Expert’s opinion : Are you lucky- Does your family give you tears of joy and merry?

Qurrata Aaiyyun                                                          Image Courtesy


Ya Allah (swt), give us the undeserved gift! What gift?  – a gift from our wives and our husbands, and our children, give us what makes our eyes so happy that it makes us cry- Qurrata Aaiyyun  it cools our eyes.

Do you know what that means? It makes you so happy that you want to cry.

When you listen to your children recite the Quran, and they love reciting the Quran- it makes you so happy that you want to cry.

When you look at your wife, and how she is raising your children- it makes you so happy that you want to cry. When she looks at her husband, who wakes up her children for Fajr, and takes them to the Masjid- she wants to cry, she is so happy. Our husbands cry and our wives cry; but they don’t cry because they are happy… they cry for other reasons.. We are asking Allah (swt) for tears of joy – we want to be so happy with our family. But, how can we achieve that?

When you go home, every day you fight with your wife.

She asks: “Why are you so late?”

You say: “Why are you asking me? You always ask me! Don’t you know there is traffic? Look outside the window!”

This happens every single day. Then, you get so angry that when you look at the child, you are like:

“Why are you playing with the toy? Why do you look happy? We don’t have happiness here. Where is your homework?”

Child says: “I didn’t get any homework…”

“Why not? I am going to complain to your school!”

God, this is not Qurrata Aaiyyun. There are people, who come to the Masjid for Salah, which is supposed to give you peace, make you calm and settle you down. Then, they go home, and there is a tornado that walked into the house. Children hide under the bed, and the wife gets off the phone. You cannot be the reason for your family to be afraid of you!

You should be a reason for your family to be joyful, overjoyed. Children should love you, they should run to you, and hug you when you come home – that is the relationship you should have with your children.

And, while I am on this topic, twenty, thirty and forty years ago, parenting was different – now, it’s not the same. For fathers- you cannot afford to be authorities over your children, you can no longer afford that. You have to be friends and authorities with your children. Our fathers were not friends with us, they were authorities. We didn’t like nudge our dad on the back and say: “Hey dad, let’s go play some basketball; let’s go play some football!” We didn’t do that.

When Abu (Baba, or Aba Jan) came home, we sat straight and said: “Assalamu Alaikum!” You get their shoes. That was twenty or thirty years ago, but nowadays, your kids don’t do that. And they won’t! We are living in 2016, brothers and sisters! We have to accept the reality that our children are exposed to a lot of things- no matter if you are in the Muslim world, or anywhere else.

“Ahtaraam” (respect) will remain. You have to respect your parents. However, we, as parents are the only ones, who can give to our children the love of Islam. And, you will not be able to give it to them, if you are only in authority, if you only yell at them and tell them what to do- without being their friend. Every father here should know, and master the video games their children play. First of all, it’s a problem, if you let them play video games; however, if you are letting them play, and  are not stopping them- then you better be sitting there, and playing with them. Don’t watch the news – you are not going to change the world! Believe me – you have watched enough news, and nothing has changed. Listen to it in the car, don’t come home and watch TV, don’t come home and watch the news – come home and play with your kids, do homework with your kids, talk to your kids, take your kids to the Masjid-  do that with them and make your kids love you. If we, fathers, don’t do this, we will lose our next generation – I am guaranteeing you.

[Reflections] Why I Wear the Hijab

hijab                                                    Image Courtesy www.


I start with His praise for it is Allah (swt) who guides me each day, and His infinite mercy sustains me for my every breath.

Recently, I was asked by somebody to write a piece for Hijab Day about my journey and my experience wearing Hijab. I was thrown into a bit of a dilemma- as this was a case of, “Well I don’t really celebrate any days as such!”; and not wanting to be offensive, as I knew he in his own right was being sincere. I wrote this over night as I decided to go with how I feel. I didn’t think that this is what was wanted out of me, but I have found that I can only find words when I speak from the heart, or I can’t say anything at all. This is what I wrote, but I didn’t give it in as I felt there could not be a competition for what each of us feels.

I don’t need a day to define the Muslimah that lives inside of me.  Every day for me is a Hijab day. Although, we go through our trials, and are in the various stages of life, but I do not call my Hijab a struggle. For me- it is a source of comfort of beauty,  peace, love, and an integral part of Deen. I don’t need days and I don’t need symbols- but I do need Him, His guidance, His mercy, and even, the people He sends as friends, as teachers, and as fellow travellers throughout this journey.

Years ago, somebody told me during that tough phase when I first wore the Hijab- that this is just a sip of the ocean. Truly, I have found that Deen is so much more than that sip. It is the ocean of life; holding onto Deen, and trying not to deviate- is the real challenge.

I come from a secular back ground, where after several years, the smallest insult to my face is that I am insane. I hear stories about my past as if there was never a time of repentance. I am told by near and dear ones that I may not be forgiven. After all, I came into it so late. After all, wasn’t I so terrible? And yes, I was; and yes, I have repented; and yes, it still goes round and round in my head. Could I have been better? Could I not have done more? For me- the depth of my madness is a normal conversation; for me- this is a normal day.

I don’t ask for sympathy for what is the point in asking for it when I look at His mercy, and I know that He chose me- the lowest of all the repentant sinners to be on His path; the one who forgot Him, but was not forgotten by Him. What I do ask for is forgiveness; and that He makes it easy for all of us. This is not a rant nor this is a complaint- this is plainly the lives of many. I am just the same story in another book which can go into volumes. But each of our stories does matter to our own selves.

When Allah (swt) wants to purify a soul, he tests it through trial and tribulation. Every soul goes through this in its own different ways.

So, here we are after each insult that broke us down; you see it only broke us to re-shape us. If you felt torn apart, it was only to weave you into something stronger.

This madness has made me weep; it has made me cry; and it has made me love. If this is what it is, and the end leads to something far better than what my human mind can fathom, then let me live in my madness.

Those who know me have known my story of “love”. So, this is not a speech of grief. This is truly a story of wanting more of that ocean. I turn everything around as this is the way I will fight. You see I love my Rabb.

And I do it for His love. I love my Prophet (sa) and I love my Deen. I find no embarrassment in secular groups to say it.  And because of this love, I also love my sisters for the sake of Allah (swt).

I cannot compare my stories to any struggling Muslimah- as sometimes when I hear others relate their lives- I am humbled by the strength of the women in this Ummah. But our stories don’t end here, do they? We will go back home. and we will struggle, and we will live some more, and that is how we will move each day.

We do what we do with love for the sake of Him; that love for which there are not enough words in the human language to describe.

When you think of who you’re doing it for, it becomes easy to close chapters and lay certain pages of life to rest- knowing deep in your heart- He has other stories for you. Better plans than we can possibly imagine. I am not just speaking about the Hijab. I speak about our way of life. Imagine, the Mercy upon us when we could have been of those unaware.

From the Creator who has written millions of beautiful journeys, you should be assured, He has got yours covered every step of the way.

After all, “Wa Huwa Ala Kulli Shai in Qadeer”.  He is powerful over everything. So, engrave this belief into your soul.

Yes, I know there are days; but just believe each day will be a good day. For even if you have slept with a face soaked in tears, wake up knowing He is still with you.  For He is As-Sami (The All-Hearer); and He does listen to your Dua- the one you made when you felt there was nobody there. And, He is Al-Wadud (The Ever Loving) – the one who loves you the most. He has all the beautiful names that belong to Him.

And, this great entity, Al-Azeem (The Magnificent) chose us to be on His path; always watching over us, protecting us, loving us, guiding His slaves to Jannah; guiding us back to Him.

When you think of all the things you are hit with; when it seems you are flooded; just then, right at that moment, find that knowledge within you; the knowledge that He will never leave you, and it is then you can truly feel this beautiful realization; that feeling which comes from within; when you utter from the depth of your soul, when you cry out and truly mean the words, Alhumdulillahi Rabb il Aalameen. When you know and understand in that moment of relief that all praise truly belongs to Him.

Repentent sinner

Struggling Muslimah



Bringing Deen in your child’s heart

quran_childThere is a good difference between teaching Deen and making your child love Deen. Teaching comes very easily; you have to instruct your children to pray, greet with peace, to be honest at all times, and to avoid all kinds of sins. They will practise it as long as they are under your supervision, but it cannot be guaranteed in your absence. In order to make them really want to do the righteous acts you have to instil love for the Deen in their hearts.
Don’t scare them with imaginary beings.

It is the most common practise in our society that, as adults, we are prone to scaring kids using imaginary beings with some horrible made-up names. It temporarily solves the problem, but in the long run, it will not do any good. First of all, it will make your child feel deceived when he or she will discover that a scary being as such never existed. Then, it will make your child think that it is alright to lie; and then, they might lie to you as well for small and big matters. Lastly, they will never get to realize the Greatness of Allah (swt).
Instead, tell them about Allah (swt), the Most Merciful, the Most Gracious. If it is about finishing their homework, tell them that since Allah (swt) has blessed them with the opportunity to study at a school, they should thank Him by finishing their school work. If you want them to finish their food, or eat a particular dish they don’t like, tell them about how Allah (swt) will be pleased if he or she eats the food Allah (swt) has blessed your family with.

Increase their trust in Allah (swt)
Increasing your children’s trust in Allah (swt) will help to make their perception about the Judgement Day, the existence of Hell and Paradise stronger. Start doing it from a very young age. Each time they are worried, tell them that Allah (swt) is with them at all times. When your children are afraid to go to school because you will not be there, let them know that even though you can’t be there, Allah (swt) will be looking after them. This makes the existence of Allah (swt) more real to children, and they start feeling protected by Allah (swt).

Make them realize their value in the sight of Allah (swt)
We all know and must believe that Allah (swt) loves each one of us more than anyone else in this world. Children will only know that when they will persistently hear from their parents. Also, for this reason, you need to avoid taunting your children about something they are not good at, or scold them unnecessarily.

Let your children know that Allah (swt) loves them more than you do or anyone else does. Make them realize the blessings Allah (swt) has showered them with. Let them know that the happiness they receive is by the blessings of Allah (swt), and that is only because they mean a lot to Allah (swt).

Don’t shun them for wrong deeds
When you catch children doing something wrong, don’t shun them or isolate them. Instead ask them to repent and rectify their mistakes. Explain to them why it is wrong to commit a sin, or to go against the commandments of Allah (swt); and that Allah (swt) is the most forgiving if they decide not to repeat their mistake.

Rewards are more effective than punishments
It is very easy to punish your children, and punishments will eventually stop your children from doing the wrong act; but better than this is to reward them for the good deeds. By rewarding, you will increase the chances of them going good deeds again.

The reward does not have to be materialistic all the time. You can juggle between rewarding with a toy, chocolate, their favourite food, reading them their favourite book, playing a game with them that they enjoy or simply encouraging them with words.

Do what you preach
‘Do what you preach’ is the most important rule that parents forget to apply when teaching their children anything. Children learn more from your actions than from your words. If you tell them that we are not supposed to lie, then you should be careful of not lying as well. If you ask them to perform the prayers on time, then they must see you doing the same.

Allow open and friendly discussions
You can only expect your children to take you seriously, if they have that trust that you are not trying to boss them- but rather, you care for them. Take some time out every day to sit and talk to your children. Let them be open enough to discuss their doubts and confusions, especially when it comes to the Deen. Do your best not to show your irritation even if you do get irritated by their questions. Of course, there always have to be this certain boundary that you will have to maintain; but, as long as, they are really serious about asking a question, you don’t have to be too hard on them.

Randomly tell them prophetic stories
I have heard this complaint from a lot of parents that their kids enjoy listening to stories; but whenever they take that opportunity to tell them Islamic tales, they quickly lose their interest, and the whole purpose of telling that story gets destroyed.

My advice is to start the story in a general manner. You don’t have use the name of the Prophet right at the start of the story. Start with telling the story and try to grasp your child’s interest with the whereabouts of the story. Whenever we are telling kids stories of the Prophets, we focus more on their names and less on the moral of the story; whereas. children are always more interested in what the story is all about. So, once you have gained the attention get to the name of the Prophet.

Introduce them to the words of Allah (swt)
Making your children learn and memorize the Quran is an excellent act. But, along with that make them understand the meaning of the verses they recite is important. Quran has covered all topics related to our lives. What could be a better way to educate your children than with the words of Allah (swt).

Instilling Deen in your child’s heart is easier said than done. But, if you do it with pure intentions, Allah (swt) is sure to help you. May Allah (swt) be pleased with all the efforts you put in to bring up a pious offspring. Ameen.

Raising confident Muslim kids

confidentIt is our fault as parents, when our children begin to panic, have self-doubt and are unable to express themselves. I say this because- in this challenging and fast paced world, children are not given the necessary attention from home to make them confident enough to face the challenges of the outside world. The home is the first port of attachment of every child and when it is damaged, their confidence is largely affected.

It is our duty as parents to imbue confidence in our children in order to make them productive human beings. And, this must start from a very tender age so that they bloom with confidence and can aspire to fly high. When a child is loved and accepted for who he/she is, they develop confidence which enrich their productivity level. Such a child is capable of coping with external challenges, and can live life to its fullest.

The following are few tips that would help us, as parents, to play our roles in enhancing confidence in our children from an early age:

  1. It is important that we always praise our children even when they perform below average in an exam. Instead of yelling at them, we must adopt nice words like, ‘Don’t worry dear, if you give it your best shot, next time you would perform better Insha’Allah’. Words like this show our children that they are loved. And, it teaches them how to react to failure. Today, we hear about children who commit suicide, or become withdrawn out of fear of their parents’ reaction when they fail. We surely do not want such for our kids Insha’Allah.
  2. When our kids deserve admonishing, it should not be done publicly. A large number of us are guilty of this. Children are prone to act silly at times- it is our duty as adults to be mature in our reaction. We shouldn’t be so angry that we smack them in malls, or in front of other people. In fact, no child should be admonished in the presence of other siblings.
  3. Never make your child feel useless by the way you treat them. Grant them equal treatment. Do not love one child above the other. This is generally unfair. No matter how unruly a child might be, it is your duty to treat them with the same treatment as others. Sometimes, when you treat them too unfairly, you push them farther from you. And, they become more rebellious. It is our fault, if our children become so unruly to a point that is unbearable.
  4. Every time we speak with them, we should be polite and speak with respect. Please, thank you, JazakumullahKhairan are words we should make use of regularly. We should never use swear words. Apart from the fact that it hurts the child, the child begins to use those words too.
  5. Dear parents, please don’t expect your child to behave like adults. Treat them within their age group. Let them act like the child they are. Please, don’t expect them to be smart and neat at all times. They are only children. When they want to be carried on the shoulder, please do that for them. After all, when they come of age, we wouldn’t have to do that and might even miss it. Don’t take their childhood away from them prematurely.
  6. Sometimes, your children are happy when you seek their opinion in making a decision. Let’s say you want to buy a scarf, it wouldn’t do you any harm if you ask your child the colour he/she thinks you should go for. Yes try this! The child automatically feels wanted and loved.
  7. Stick their achievements on the wall at home. Schools do this to show they are proud of them. Aren’t we proud of them too? After all they are our children.
  8. Instead of words, why not try using more of actions to teach them. Let me tell you this, they imitate your actions in your absence. So, we should be careful what we do in their presence. When they see you pray, read the Quran and do good deeds, they follow your footsteps. This means you teach them to follow your example.
  9. Teach your children before the public does. Teach them to handle mobile devices responsibly. When they ask questions, satisfy their curiosity- else it would be satisfied outside the home. Talk to them about marriage from age ten. Don’t fret! They know about it already from age nine. Break the ice! Say something about it. You just might not go into intimate details at their age.
  10. Do not for once shout at them. I feel shouting is only meant for someone down there on the scale of relevance. Our children don’t belong there, refrain from doing this. Yes! Sometimes they get us so angry that we want to let it all out. But, pause a minute to examine the situation, and remember that he/she is only a child.
  11. Pray for your children. Make Dua for them. By doing this, we teach them to pray for us too.
  12. Repeatedly tell your child how much you love them. Treat them like pearls. Hug them tightly, kiss them and complement them. Tell them how beautiful or handsome they look. Of course, it increases their confidence.

We should begin to prod our children gently as heavy-handed method of parenting would damage their confidence. I know that there are some parents whose deeds develop confidence in their children, but the truth is, they are the minority. I pray that we serve as role models for the kids in our lives; teaching them through example how to be confident, and achieve great feats in this life and the hereafter. May Allah (swt) bless our efforts, and guide our children to be the comfort that we desire. I pray they grow up to be the apple of our eyes. May Allah (swt) help us to be parents who would raise confident children that would be a blessing to this Ummah. Ameen.

A Decade of Happy Marriage


win 7 home premium 64 bit product key
win 7 home premium key oem
win 7 home premium serial key 2014
win 10 professional key paypal
win server 2012 r2 essentials cd key
win 7 enterprise key cheap
win 10 ultimate activation code 2012
win 7 professional serial key 32 bit
win server 2012 essentials keygen
Office Outlook 2016
windows 7 activation key sale
windows 7 professional sp1 key
Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0
Microsoft Windows Vista Enterprise with SP2
windows 7 license key cheap
windows 7 enterprise product key code
windows 7 key cheapest
windows 10 activation keygen
windows 10 enterprise activation key download
Microsoft Office 2010
win 10 license key finder
win 8.1 pro genuine product key
win server 2008 genuine activation key
win server 2012 install cd key
win 8 standard key code
win 7 professional sp1 key oem
win 10 Home Basic to Ultimate Anytime Upgrade
Office Visio Standard 2013
win 7 64 bit product key
win server 2012 r2 standard keygen
win 8 professional activation key 64 bit
win 8.1 professional 64 bit product key
win 7 enterprise x86 serial key
win 7 product key buy home premium
win 7 Ultimate
win 10 ultimate sp1 32 bit cd key
win server 2008 r2 standard key activation
win server 2008 32 bit cd key
win server 2008 r2 enterprise key 2012
win 8 standard activation key
win 7 home basic genuine key
win 10 cd key not valid
win 8.1 enterprise product key price
win 10 professional key cheap
win 7 enterprise activation key download
win 10 professional license key purchase
win 10 activation key purchase
win 8 license key sticker
win 8.1 pro dell oem key
win 8.1 pro cd key
win 7 home premium oem key asus
win 8 enterprise key shop
Office 2016
win 7 Home Premium to Ultimate Anytime Upgrade
win embedded 8 standard key
win 10 home premium sp1 key original
Office Project Professional 2013 SP2
win 10 professional 64 bit product keygen
win server 2008 r2 original key
Windows Server 2008 Datacenter R2
windows server 2012 r2 essentials keygen
windows 8 enterprise key
windows 7 home cd key
McAfee AntiVirus Plus 2013 (1PCs-2Year)
windows 10 ultimate serial key list
Norton Internet Security 2013 2 years/3 PC
windows 10 license key
windows 10 home premium sp1 key original
windows 8.1 enterprise x64 serial key
Windows 10 Starter to Home Premium Anytime Upgrade
windows server 2008 key
Microsoft Office Outlook 2010
windows 10 home premium sp1 key serial
windows embedded 8 standard key
windows 7 home premium key shop
windows 10 enterprise activation key download
Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011
Microsoft Windows Vista Business with SP2
windows 7 ultimate key cheap
windows 8 professional oem key
Windows Server 2003 Web Edition
Rosetta Stone German Level 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 Set
Microsoft Office 2007 Ultimate
windows 8.1 cd key list
Windows Vista to Ultimate Anytime Upgrade
windows 7 professional product key activation code
windows 7 professional product key prices
Windows 10 Starter to Home Basic Anytime Upgrade
McAfee Total Protection 2013 (3PCs-2Year)
windows 7 home oem key
windows 7 home premium activation key oem
windows 7 enterprise serial key 64 bit
windows 7 home premium keygen 32 bit
windows server 2008 buy key
McAfee Internet Security 2013 (3PC-1Year)
windows 8 enterprise genuine key
windows 7 ultimate oem key 2012
Microsoft Windows Vista Home Basic With SP2
Windows 7 Enterprise SP1

9 happy marriage

Being a young girl, I repeatedly had to listen to such statements: “Whatever you study, one day you have to get married and do the household chores.”

I used to ignore it as much as I could. After the bone-breaking study of medicine with all work and no play schedule, there came a time when I had to tie a knot with somebody and leave all my books. I had to start from scratch and set foot in the sea of entirely new experiences and learning. Anatomy and biochemistry that had become a part and parcel of my life got replaced by the study of kitchen management and hacks.

My married life is now ten years old, and a proud feather is added to my marriage cap. I have realized the deeper meaning of marriage – it is a pact of making your sharp corners round.

According to Mufti Ibrahim Desai: “There can be no doubt in the success of a marriage governed by the fear of Allah (swt).”

I don’t celebrate marriage anniversaries by parties or hip-hop; but I do celebrate by pondering over the lessons that I had learnt during that year and store them in my memory. Each year, I implement those lessons into my life to get more happiness and success. My secret of a blissful marriage is based on the following lessons.

  1. Silence is the best medicine

It is very usual to have differences, but to remain calm and composed is an art, which is achieved through excellent self-control tactics. Arguing at times of conflict can make the situation worse by letting the Satan enter into it.

Abu Saeed Al-Khudri reported that the Prophet (sa) said: “If anyone is humble for the sake of Allah (swt) by a degree, Allah (swt) will elevate him one degree, until he reaches the highest degrees; if anyone is arrogant towards Allah (swt), Allah (swt) will lower him one degree until he reaches the lowest of low degrees.” (Ibn Hajar Al-Asqalani)

The very first thing that took me to the tantrums after my marriage was the late night schedule of my husband’s job. As my father was a government officer, we used to enjoy the evening tea with him at home. When I shared that with my hubby, I got a mind-blowing lecture of office responsibilities and problems. The best I could do was to pray to Almighty Allah (swt) and remain silent. The next year, my hubby changed the job, in which he had the facility to return back home early and could work from home. Silence helped me keep a peaceful environment at home.

  1. Conquer through love

Love is the language that everybody understands. Showing constant gratitude and love takes your hubby to the Mount Everest of his self-esteem. In turn, he showers you with the same.

  1. To err is human, to forgive – divine

Females have a 967432 GB of memory, and on any little issue, they open up the historical book of complaints, which ignites never-ending arguments. I used to avoid it by imagining the large number of women burning in hellfire, due to ungratefulness to their husbands.

It was narrated by Abdullah ibn Abbas (rtam) that the Messenger of Allah (sa) said: “I was shown Hell, and I have never seen anything more terrifying than it. And I saw that the majority of its people are women.” They said: “Why, O Messenger of Allah (sa)?” He said: “Because of their ingratitude (Kufr).” It was said: “Are they ungrateful to Allah (swt)?” He said: “They are ungrateful to their companions (husbands) and ungrateful for good treatment. If you are kind to one of them for a lifetime and then she sees one (undesirable) thing in you, she will say: ‘I have never had anything good from you.’” (Bukhari)

  1. The foolish secret

I know this is difficult to apply for many of us, but believe me – it works. I used to surprise my hubby by listening to common talks with great astonishment. It is a secret, which I apply regularly and keep my relationship filled with joy.

  1. Invest in your relationship

Sharing lovely gifts and words adds strength to my life and fuels my passion to live together. A beautifully-wrapped present leaves a long lasting effect on the heart of your hubby – it will never be a waste!

  1. Out of sight wins the mind!

It sounds awkward but this is another secret to my fulfilling joyous life. Whenever I used to return from my mom’s house, I used to find a new spark in my married life. Being away for some time allows one to re-discover, and have some ‘me’ time. It helps both to settle and look into the disputes with an impartial aspect.

  1. Give credit

Your achievements and success must be because of your hard work, but transfer the credit to your hubby, as that success wouldn’t have been possible without his broadmindedness, compromise, support, and appreciation. Try to be more courteous and giving.

  1. Show gratitude

Thank your hubby often; it takes just a second but kindles the light of respect and love. Nothing big is required to admit his support – only a nice comment on his return from the office or shop can make the day wonderful for both of you.

  1. Share with care

Effective communication is the life and blood of a successful relationship. Not a single day of my married life has passed without sharing problems, asking or just telling the whole day routine. It gradually and slowly builds up the understanding between the two souls.

  1. Trust is a must

Last but not the least, trust is the key to a prosperous and ever growing married life. Hiding petty matters from the hubby may be of no value at the moment, but it will eventually shake the pillars of married life. Remember the key point that after your marriage, your hubby is the most worthy person in your life. Although ten years have passed, I am still striving to the best of my abilities, so that I don’t let anyone down. Insha’Allah.

Maternal affection- Signs of Allah’s (swt) compassion

handholdingRecent scientific research has shown that there are genes in infants that are activated when they receive affection — or lack of affection — from their mothers.

Brain analysis performed by researchers from NYU Langone Medical Center has revealed that several hundred genes are more, or less, active when infants experience pain than those that do not. However, when infants receive affection from their mothers as a manifestation of Allah’s (swt) compassion, fewer than a hundred genes are similarly expressed.

In a study involving rats, Regina Sullivan, a neurobiologist researching the subject, for the first time revealed the short-term effects of maternal affection on a distressed infant’s brain.

The study was also designed to show the long-term consequences of maternal affection. The study’s conclusion was striking, because similar effects were shown in humans, as well as, other mammals.

The study showed that a mother’s “Tender Loving Care” (TLC) reduces sensations of pain in babies. TLC also had a positive effect on early brain development. It was conducted by altering gene activity in the region of the brain involved in emotions.

Sullivan said: “Our study shows that a mother comforting her infant in pain does not just elicit a behavioural response, but also the comforting itself modifies — for better or worse — critical neural circuitry during early brain development.”

The study involved genetic analyses on the almond-sized amygdala region in the infant rat’s brain. This is the region responsible for emotional processes. Signals related to fear or pleasure, for instance, are processed by that region.

Sullivan discovered that maternal affection controlled electrical signaling in the infant rat’s brain. The latest research has shed light on the complex mechanisms by which affection eliminates feelings of pain in newborns.

Sullivan went on to say that nobody would want to see an infant, from whatever species, suffering; and emphasized that, new alternative methods should be developed to treat pain in infants, since the opiate-based drugs used to treat adults suffering from physical pain could be very dangerous for infants. Maternal affection and care, and maybe even factors such as the mother’s scent, may be able to reduce that pain.

Sullivan directed her attention to the long-term consequences of these genetic modifications. In her view, these long-term consequences must be compared to the short-term benefits for tying pain stimuli throughout infancy to the mother, the symbol of safety and security.

Sullivan also said: “The more we learn about nurturing the infant brain during infancy, the better prepared we are to deal with the long-term problems that arise from pain, and physical and mental abuse experienced during infancy.”

It is of course, Almighty and Omniscient Allah (swt) Who produces all living things’ superior characteristics; Who causes them to adopt rational plans; and Who creates and inspires these. “And Allah did create you (Adam) from dust, then from Nutfah (male and female discharge semen drops i.e. Adam’s offspring), then He made you pairs (male and female). And no female conceives or gives birth, but with His Knowledge. And no aged man is granted a length of life, nor is a part cut off from his life (or another man’s life), but is in a Book (Al-Lauh Al-Mahfuz) Surely, that is easy for Allah.” (Fatir 35:11)

Chance is unable to account for the cause and source of a living being’s behaviour. It is of great importance to examine living being’s behaviour from that perspective because observations show that no living being is completely uncontrolled. It is Allah (swt), the Lord of the earth and heavens and all that lies between; Who creates all living things from nothing; Who observes them at every moment and commands their behaviour. This is revealed as follows in the Quran, “

“I put my trust in Allah, my Lord and your Lord! There is not a moving (living) creature but He has grasp of its forelock. Verily, my Lord is on the Straight Path (the truth).” (Hud 11:56)

The wisdom behind sensitivity to affection

There is much wisdom in the way that Allah (swt) creates people to be so sensitive to love and affection. Allah (swt) is the Most Merciful of the merciful, and He commands people to submit to, and seek refuge in, Him alone.

People are created to be so sensitive to love and affection- so that they feel a natural need to seek the shelter of their Lord, the All-Merciful and the Most Loving. Such people turn to Allah (swt) with a great passion, and submit to Him in all matters.

The affection that people need as babies is met by the love of Allah (swt) manifested in the mother; but as a person gains consciousness, he becomes aware that he needs to seek the shelter of Allah’s (swt) love, and he needs to alter his mind and will accordingly. Believers who possess unwavering faith know that Allah (swt) is the All-Merciful and the Most Merciful; and that He is the most loving toward His servants; and they feel His love and compassion throughout their lives.

Paradise, the greatest manifestation of His love, awaits the believers in their eternal lives.

It is revealed in the Quran that Allah (swt) is the Most Merciful of the merciful as follows, He (Moses) said, “Musa (Moses) said: “O my Lord! Forgive me and my brother, and make us enter into Your Mercy, for you are the Most Merciful of those who show mercy.”(Al-Araf 7:151)

And (remember) Ayub (Job), when he cried to his Lord: “Verily, distress has seized me, and You are the Most Merciful of all those who show mercy.”(Al-Anbiya 21:83)

What the heart says…

Mend a broken heart

My heart is dead. My heart is rotten.

Oh, I gave too much time to this world, my Allah (swt) I have forgotten.

I tried to squeeze out happiness from this Dunya, but all I ended up with, is a broken heart.

Oh my heart is dead. Yes, it is rotten.

It’s filled with diseases… that overcame its beauty.

I feel it shrinking as it is becoming a black deep hole.

Yes, my heart I’m describing, you may call me crazy.

But, you’re not aware of a miracle- quite exemplary!

There is a vitamin for a heart that has lost its beauty.

Oh heart… Are you okay? What caused you this misery?

The heart replied in awe. Your sins oh man! Your sins oh son of Adam!

They’re darker than the night. They’re much poisonous than venom.

And the heap you bring in me, Wallahi, I am buried;

Buried in your sins way deep down.

You lied, you backbit, you disobeyed, you envied.

You hated, didn’t love. You danced, didn’t pray.

You listened to music. Wallahi, that destroyed me!

You talked to Na-Mehrem, that made me blind;

there stood a wall in me that would decline any light.

You had no modesty. Your gazes weren’t down.

Your anger was like fire, it burnt all peace in me.

You were disrespectful to your parents. Believe me, that’s when I was doomed!

You spoke ill of others, encouraged their sins. You were selfish and greedy.

You sat in front of that big screen all day. That misshaped me, misguided me, and misplaced me.

You kept earning Haram. You kept eating Haram. How could that ever enlighten me?

You counted your money and restrained from charity.

You thought “money” could bring you happiness only!

You deceived your Lord and no light could ever reach me!

Darkness creeped in till I shrank into a black deep hole.

Oh son of Adam, you’re really such a fool!

You move around with a dead heart, thinking you’re too cool.

Now that you know what caused me to die. Perhaps, I shall tell you, how to make me alive.

Yes it is actually possible! This black deep hole could become an enlightening lantern.

Just keep listening carefully. It’s not at all hard I tell you.

One simple ingredient I long for. One vitamin that has the cure.

Oh son of Adam, “Verily, in the Remembrance of Allah do hearts find rest!” (Ar-Rad 13:28)

I beg you, I do… Just remember Allah (swt)!

Dhikr is the key, the antibiotic to my disease.

Take a doze everyday. Start slow and it will guide you to eternal peace!

Keep your hands busy in worldly necessities. And your heart busy in the Dhikr of Allah (swt).

Believe me, I’ll become a brand new heart.

The darkness will disappear, the holes will fill up, the bruises will heal, I will size-up!

Just remember your Lord, praise Him, love Him. Obey Him, fear Him. Make Him yours!

Because, even after, all the darkness you brought in me, He always loved you. He kept an eye on you in patience, that you shall one day remember Him.

Just ask for forgiveness one single time, and He will forgive you without any complains.

He will make the darkness disappear from me, and light me up in a way you can’t believe.

And trust me, that when I’m healed- you will heal. No power could destroy you, no darkness could reach you, nce you have a healed me.

And if you shall leave me dead again- just crawl back to Him, remember Him.And He shall guide you.

Umm Waraqah bint Nawfal (ra) and her love for Quran

flower-on-quranAlso known as Umm Waraqah bint Abdullah (ra), her name is ascribed to her grandfather Nawfal. She was from the learned people of the Ansar (the helpers of Madinah). Besides fasting and being an ardent worshipper, Umm Waraqah (ra) had one more distinguishing quality – she had memorised the Quran and was the Imam of the women.

The Lover of the Quran and the Female Imam

Umm Waraqah (ra) was a rich woman having a prestigious lineage. Instead of losing herself in the worldly pleasures, she made herself busy in studying, understanding, reflecting on and memorising the Quran. The Quran was the main focus of her life, by which she lived till her end.

Instead of losing herself in the worldly pleasures, she made herself busy in studying, understanding, reflecting on and memorising the Quran

Preserving Allah’s (swt) Book in her heart, there was no chance that Allah (swt) would not honour her. The Prophet (sa) permitted her to lead the women in prayer in her house. She requested for a Muadh-dhin, and an old man was appointed.

Lessons to draw: Being chosen to serve the Quran is indeed a great honour. We must continuously work on our relationship with the Quran; having studied it once, we must spend time reflecting on its verses, live by them, preserve them in our hearts, and share them with others. We also learn that a woman can lead other women in prayer. We find the examples of Aisha (ra) and Umm Salamah (ra). But in order to lead others in prayers, one must first work on the recitation of the Quran.

The People of the Quran stay awake in the Nights

Being a memoriser of the Quran, we see that Umm Waraqah (ra) sought guidance from the Quran. Quran inspired her to next courses of action.

When she read: “Perform As-Salat (Iqamat-as-Salat) from mid-day till the darkness of the night (i.e. the Zuhr, ‘Asr, Maghrib, and ‘Isha’ prayers), and recite the Quran in the early dawn (i.e. the morning prayer). Verily, the recitation of the Quran in the early dawn is ever witnessed (attended by the angels in charge of mankind of the day and the night). And in some parts of the night (also) offer the Salat (prayer) with it (i.e. recite the Quran in the prayer), as an additional prayer (Tahajjud optional prayer Nawafil)…,” (Al-Isra 17: 78-79), she knew that Allah (swt) is speaking to her. From that day onwards, she started getting up for Tahajjud and reciting the Quran. It became a habit.

On his way for the Fajr prayer, Umar ibn Al-Khattab (ra) would hear her reciting the Quran. He would admire this lady for her commitment and love for the Book of Allah (swt). He knew it was indeed a blessing of Allah (swt) to be granted the honour of waking up at Tahajjud and reciting the Quran; not due to a worldly need but purely for the love of Allah’s (swt) Speech. When he would return from the Masjid he would still hear Umm Waraqah’s (ra) voice, reciting the Quran.

Building a strong relationship with the Quran, cleansed Umm Waraqah’s (ra) heart from its diseases. She held no rancour or hatred for anyone. She was a gentle and kind-hearted person which opened up the hearts of others. Neighbourhood ladies would visit her often for the congregational prayer, as well as, the educational gatherings.

Let us express our love for the Book by challenging ourselves to memorise its Surahs and revising them in our prayer

Lessons to draw: Our love for anything is only displayed by our attitude towards it. If we truly love the Quran, then Quran will become the most important thing in our life. The best recitation of the Quran is that which is recited in the prayer. Let us express our love for the Book by challenging ourselves to memorise its Surahs and revising them in our prayer. Let us not remain content with only learning the small ones. We should also encourage our Huffaz to not leave their recitation after memorising the Book. They must show their gratitude to Allah (swt) for the great honour. Little should be our sleep and long should be our nights spent in worship.

(Adapted from the book: Seerat e Sahabiyat k Darakshan Pehlu and the lectures of Dr. Farhat Hashmi: Seerat e Sahabiyat)

A whisper in void


My love and sacrifice for Him, who heals the wounds in my heart- slowly, but perfectly.
My self submitted to His will, who holds my unknown fate.
My faith and belief in the One from whom I beg mercy.
My contentment affiliates with Him who is everywhere I go.
My eyes desperate to catch a glimpse of the One I feel everywhere, but see nowhere.
My head bows to His majesty and greatness, none dares to deny.
My day begins and ends praising Him, who’s worthy of every praise.
My secrets and facts are known to Him, who peeks inside my heart.
My sins and goofs are unknown to the world; He knows and keeps them hidden.
My success and failure, it is He who decides.
My thanks merely paid to Him, who absolves sinners like nobody else.
My God, my Lord, my Allah (swt), enlist me amongst those you love.

The Self-Esteem Vaccine – Fosters the Life of your Child



Firstly, let’s try to understand what self-esteem really is. Self esteem maybe defined as a person’s self worth or how a person thinks of himself/herself. It usually develops from childhood and matures until we reach our adulthood.

Self- esteem in children is like a weapon in this challenging world. A child, who is loved and accepted for who he/she is, usually develops a high self-esteem; and is much capable of coping conflicts, stressful situations, and high pressure circumstances. They are better prepared to take on new challenges and live life to its fullest. They know their strengths and weaknesses; they are more optimistic, and even more realistic with reasonable expectation from others.

On the contrary, children with low self-esteem find it difficult to handle stressful situations and challenges, leading to major anxiety, panic, low performance issues, self- doubt and frustration. They have self-critical thoughts which are generalized as being “I am not good enough!” or “I can’t do anything right!”. They become solemn, withdrawn, or even clinically depressed at times.

Self-esteem originates early in life. Once we reach our adulthood, it’s difficult to change the programming we have acquired in the course of our life, or how we have learned to perceive things- old habits die hard. Hence, it would be very wise and intuitive of parents to develop and promote their child’s self-esteem early on.

The following are few tips that would boost your child’s self-esteem.

Let them take risks in life (Raise risk takers)

Let your children put themselves out there; in order to do so you have to step back. To build confidence in children, you have to let your children take chances; make their own choices and let them take responsibility for the choices as well.Throw them in the deep end and they will reach the shallow end on their own.

Let them fall (It is not about never falling, it is about always getting back up)

Sometimes, when children take their first step they fall- please let them fall, and tell them that it is okay to fall, it’s a part of life, you can’t always win. Let children try, fail, try again and fail again; but when, they finally succeed- they learn more about their own capabilities, strength and weaknesses. Many parents think that failure and struggle in life will result in poor self-esteem in children, but it’s actually a golden opportunity to help build it. The rain never stopped the itsy bitsy spider from climbing up, did it?

Unconditional Love (No terms and conditions)

Let your child know that your love is without conditions. Even if she/he makes mistakes or takes a wrong turn in life, it doesn’t make the parents stop loving him/her any less; your doors should always be open to your child- in fact your child must know you are his/her life line.

Be specific in your praise (Don’t just slap a gold star on everything)

Always praise your child in his/her achievements, but be specific. For instance, if a child gets good marks in her/his English exam, don’t just say “good effort”; tell her/him what a great job he/she has done on the essay, and how impressed you were. Do not praise the beautiful drawing your child did on the neighbour’s wall!

Let your child know how proud you are of them (cheer a little louder)

A little goes a long way. Your child needs to know how proud you are of of him/her. They need to know you see them struggle, suffer and win. You need to encourage them when they bring home a trophy- make them a trophy case and get ice cream; and when they don’t, they still deserve an ice cream for trying.

Avoid saying hurtful things (thou shall not hurt)

Children are usually sensitive to critical comments. Parents need to be extra cautious with their use of words. Parents usually end up saying hurtful things or slapping their child- especially when they are busy. So, whenever your child comes asking for your help- though you are on the edge, stop, take a deep breath, see what your child needs and help them; if not urgent, explain gently that you are too busy and will help her/him, but in a little while. Instead of being physical or being loud to the child, try explaining to them calmly. Children who don’t feel safe, or are abused at home, are at the greatest risk for developing poor self-esteem; and they may even resort to a conflicted life.

Set Goals (brief them on objectives)

Teach your children to make goals in life, and help them accomplish them; they may take pride in their achievements which will help a lot in boosting their self-esteem. And also show them the importance of planning. You are never lost when you have a map.

Be a Great Role Model for your Child (Do as I do)

You can’t expect your children to have a high self-esteem, if you are constantly complaining about things yourself, and showing a pessimistic personality; your children mimic you. You need to nurture your own self-esteem and your children will have a great role model to look up to.

Be your child’s counselor

Be your child’s counselor instead of asking others for help. If you think your child is suffering with low self-esteem, try to figure out what could have gone wrong; sit down with your child, talk to him/her, try to listen to him/her, give him/her your undivided attention. Even if the child doesn’t want to talk initially, keep on trying, he will open up eventually. If you are consistent, you should take professional help only in worst case scenarios ,but first you must try it on your own, because you can’t substitute parental love and attention with any professional help; and if, you are not ready to guide your child, then someone else will, that could end badly.

Lastly, parents should acknowledge that promoting healthy self-esteem in children is as important as giving your child three meals and a warm jacket in winters. Healthy self-esteem is the greatest gift that parents can give to their children.

(Part 2) Love and loyalty for Allah (swt) – Divine legacy of Prophet Ibrahim (as)

Sahara-Desert-9Click here to read the first part of the article.

3.  Submission
This love brought about submission towards Allah (swt) for Ibrahim (as) because obeying and submitting to the orders is the natural consequence of love. If you can’t submit, you don’t really love.

Every prophet has a specific quality. When it comes to Ibrahim (as), his unique quality is submission. He was submissive to his Lord.

“When his Lord said to him, “Submit (i.e. be a Muslim)!” He said, “I have submitted myself (as a Muslim) to the Lord of the ‘Alamin (mankind, Jinns and all that exists).” (Al-Baqarah 2:131)

The scholars describe this verse as:  When Allah (swt) ordered him to submit, there was no pause and no intermission, and no question asked. Allah (swt) said, “Submit,” and Ibrahim (as) immediately said, “I submit to the Lord of the worlds.”  He did not even ask a question in any regard.  When we check the life of Ibrahim (as) and the rites of Hajj, we see the submission of Ibrahim (as).  For that reason, Islam (which is submission and surrendering to the will of Allah (swt)) goes all the way back to the original practice of monotheism of Ibrahim (as). Whereas we need to have a thousand questions answered, a hundred heart attacks, many motivational reminders and many sleepless nights making the decision before we finally take up some Quranic command- wearing Hijab, for instance.

When Allah (swt) ordered him to submit, there was no pause and no intermission, and no question asked.

This is what we learn from the experience of Ibrahim (as); he submitted to the Will of Allah (swt). But, we have a problem with this type of submission. If you look closely, the heart of the Quran’s message is:
1. Accept Allah (swt) as your Master.
2. Accept yourself as His slave.
3. Guidance comes to those who accept themselves as His slaves.

It is very easy for us to accept that Allah (swt) is Merciful. We accept that, and say “cool, I will still do whatever I want.”

But, we have a hard time accepting that He is our Master. Because that implies we are slaves and slaves are not free people; they are supposed to do all that their Master says. They are supposed to submit.
And because our evil desires and egos are so inflated, we fail to accept Him as our Master. We might say it with our tongues, but our actions prove otherwise.

If you want to really live the legacy of Ibrahim (as), you have to accept Allah (swt) as your Master and submit to His commands.

4. Sacrifice
Because of this over flowing love for Allah (swt), Ibrahim (as) was ever ready to give up anything and everything for Allah (swt).
He left his father, his people and his homeland where he lived and grew up, his comfort and eventually, even prepared to literally slaughter his extremely beloved son, Ismail (as) – all for the sake of Allah (swt).

But, Allah (swt) saved him from the great trial of sacrificing his beloved son. Because the purpose was not to slaughter the son, rather the aim was to make the heart pure for Allah’s (swt) love. And Ibrahim (as) had that pure love.

Are we ready to give up all that we desire for the Only One we believe in?

If we are able to take this lesson of sacrificing everything for the love of Allah (swt) from the act of sacrifice done on Eid-ul-Adha, then we have achieved the essence of the message. Because in the end, it all comes down to this: Are we ready to give up all that we desire for the Only One we believe in?

5. Tawakkul

“O Ibrahim, will you go and leave us in this valley in which there are no people and nothing?” Hajra (ra) said that to her husband, Ibrahim (as), several times, and he did not answer her. Then she said to him: “Is it Allah (swt) Who has commanded you to do this?” He said: “Yes.” She said: “Then He will not forsake us.” (Bukhari)

It is an unparalleled example of having trust in Allah’s (swt) plan. But with it also reflect on Ibrahim’s (as)  state of Tawakkul. Is it easy to leave behind your family in a remote place like this? Definitely not. But, when Allah (swt) tells you so, you do it without any hesitation and fear.

Can we do that? With our current state of faith, the answer will be obvious.

Any rewards of this love for Allah (swt) and this unmatched submission? Yes many. And one of the obvious ones is:

6. Hajj and building the Kabah

“And (remember) when Ibrahim (Abraham) and (his son) Ismail (Ishmael) were raising the foundations of the House (the Kabah at Makkah), (saying), ‘Our Lord! Accept (this service) from us. Verily, You are the All-Hearer, the All-Knower’” (Al-Baqarah 2:127)

The chapter of the establishment of Hajj is a unique chapter.  Muslims are still following the legacy of Ibrahim (as). Remember  whenever you go for Hajj, you are the response of Ibrahim (as). You are the response of his call when Allah (swt) told him to call the people to come for Hajj!  Proclaim the Hajj, and let the people come and answer his call! Till this day, we remember him and follow his example.
The essence of Propfet Ibrahim (as) legacy
This is the legacy of the great Prophet of Allah (swt), Ibrahim (as). Love Allah (swt). Then submit. And that’s the true meaning of being a Muslim.

Love for Allah (swt) made him succesful. And Allah (swt) praised him as follows,

“And (remember) when the Lord of Ibrahim (Abraham) [i.e., Allah] tried him with (certain) Commands, which he fulfilled. He (Allah) said (to him), “Verily, I am going to make you a leader (Prophet) of mankind.” [Ibrahim (Abraham)] said, “And of my offspring (to make leaders).” (Allah) said, “My Covenant (Prophethood, etc.) includes not Zalimun (polytheists and wrong-doers).”

(Al-Baqarah 2:124)

La ilaha illa Allah is not just a statement of the tongue; let the heart bear witness!

Love and loyalty for Allah (swt) – Divine legacy of Prophet Ibrahim (as)

maqam“And Allah did take Ibrahim (Abraham) as a Khaleel (an intimate friend)” (An-Nisa 4:125)

All of us are going to leave our footsteps and traces behind in this world. And when we die, we will be remembered and judged according to those traces. They can be either good or bad. That will be the legacy we leave behind.

Surely our legacy should be powerful and inspiring. But what should that be? What can we do that will outdo other common legacies? How about delving into one of the most brilliant legacies ever left behind? The legacy of Ibrahim (as). For the Quran says,

“Indeed there has been an excellent example for you in Abraham and those with him” (Al-Mumtahinah 60:4)

People leave behind their stories which the world remembers and cheers upon. But, the legacy we are going to mention here is unique. It is unique, simply because, it is not only a legacy of power and a great vision- but more importantly-  it is a legacy of loyalty and pure heart-felt love; a legacy of loving Allah (swt).

Ibrahim (as) was a man of vision and deep insight. He thought of not only his immediate children, but rather, his entire progeny. His concern for their spiritual well being and his constant prayers to Allah (swt) depict his deep vision; the vision of making pure Tawheed stay alive in his descendants.

Spiritually enriched legacy of Ibrahim (as)

1. Pure love for Allah (swt) and living La ilaha illa Allah

“Human history is the long terrible story of man trying to find something other than God which will make him happy.”

Allah (swt) praised his friend in His Book, the Quran,

Verily, Ibrahim (Abraham) was an Ummah (a leader having all the good righteous qualities), or a nation, obedient to Allah, Hanifa (i.e. to worship none but Allah), and he was not one of those who were Al-Mushrikun (polytheists, idolaters, disbelievers in the Oneness of Allah, and those who joined partners with Allah).”(An-Nisa 16:120)

Due to his love for Allah (swt), he found what we all keep looking for all through our lives; and, it is the most hard-to-snag things of all – peace!

1. Devotion.
2. True in faith.
3. No shirk (which means absolute Tawheed)
The pure concept of Tawheed etched in ones heart + devotion + truthfulness in faith = 100% pure love for Allah (swt) and Him alone.

This was Ibrahim (as)!
2. Attainment of peace through struggle and sacrifice

Strangely, if you see Ibrahim’s (as) life in a quick glance, you see no fruits- because what you find is, either struggle or sacrifice. But, analyzing much more deeply, you find contentment behind those struggles; and extreme love behind those sacrifices. Due to his love for Allah (swt), he found what we all keep looking for all through our lives; and, it is the most hard-to-snag things of all – peace!

Contrary to what Ibrahim (as) had for Allah (swt) – i.e. pure love and firm belief in Tawheed – what we have is another story. Simply put, we do not have that peace in our lives; we cringe at the very thought of separation with our loved ones. We cannot even begin to imagine the idea of sacrificing something small (like to quit smoking) for Allah (swt) – let alone something big! Our lives revolve around obsessive love for our spouses, crazy children-centered homes, overwhelming desire for a friend, excessive love for wealth, extra hope pinned in some human being…
You can go on and on as the list is pretty much endless.

We seek for love in all the wrong places, and hence, come back heartbroken.

Fault with our theory of love

We seek for love in all the wrong places, and hence, come back heartbroken. The moment we love anything more than our Creator, that very thing we love more becomes the cause of our greatest pain. But, Ibrahim (as) found love in its right place with Allah (swt), and that’s why, he had “Qalb-e-Saleem” – a sound heart.

We profess with our tongues that we believe in La ilaha illa Allah, but our actions seldom actualize the Kalimah. We claim we love Allah (swt) the most, but fail to give Him priority every time.(You delay Fajr prayer for sleep, you miss Dhuhr for work, Isha for the World Cup, take interest based loans to please your wife etc.)

We are taken over by the love of this world, and that leaves us with less or no room for the love of the Creator in our lives. The famous novel “Twilight” teaches us obsessive love for humans- which involves loving the creation more than the Creator; breaking all the boundaries of Halal and Haram in the name of love for some other creature.

Nowadays, other forms of love are creeping in a Muslim’s heart.  Muslims need to make the love of Allah (swt) superior to all other love ideologies.

Ibrahim (as) found love in its right place with Allah (swt), and that’s why, he had “Qalb-e-Saleem” – a sound heart.

Know that people will continue their lives when you die. Indeed, when you die they will stop calling you by your name: they will ask, “Where is the Janazah? Where is the body?” Once you’re buried, they will refer to you as “his grave”; and will say, “I’m going to visit the grave of so and so.”
Hence, do not sacrifice your relationship with your Lord for the sake of your family and friends.
Focus on a relationship that is for eternity: your relationship with Allah (swt).

Look at this profound piece of writing:

“Allah (swt) has decreed that he who loves something other than Him will surely be tormented by it; that one who fears something other than Allah (swt) will come under its control; that one who involves himself with something to the exclusion of Allah (swt), will find it a source of grief; that one who prefers another over Allah (swt) will not be blessed therein; and that one who tries to please a fellow creature by anything displeasing Allah (swt), will without fail, bring His anger upon himself.”
(Ibn Qayyim Al Jawziyya)

[To be continued Insha Allah]

Lessons of Patience from Umm Sulaym Bint Malhan (ra)

sabrMother’s love for her son

The Prophet (sa) would often visit Talha’s (ra) family; he would not go to any other home besides his wives’. The scholars explain that Umm Sulaym (ra) and her sister Umm Haram (ra) were maternal aunts of the Prophet (sa) either through breastfeeding or blood. Hence, they were Mahram.

One day, when the Prophet (sa) came, Umm Sulaym (ra) presented him with dates and Ghee (purified butter). The Prophet (sa) informed that he was fasting. He, then went in a corner, and offered two units of voluntary prayer. Anas (ra) and his mother joined him, as well. The Prophet (sa) prayed for Umm Sulaym (ra) and her family. Umm Sulaym (ra) then requested the Prophet (sa) to pray for her dear son Anas (ra). The Prophet (sa) said, “O Allah (swt)! Give him wealth and children, and bless him.” This Dua was accepted by Allah (swt). Anas (ra) grew up to be wealthy and there were many children from his lineage.

Lessons to draw: We see that Umm Sulaym (ra) misses no chance to seek the best for her son. When her husband rejected her, she dedicated herself to Anas’s upbringing. When Anas (ra) grew up a little, she sent him to the Prophet (sa) to serve him and to learn directly from him. When the Prophet (sa) visited their home, she requested prayers for her dear son.

We see that Umm Sulaym (ra) misses no chance to seek the best for her son. How attentive are we to the many opportunities around us?

How attentive are we to the many opportunities around us? How enthusiastic are we in seeking lasting goodness for our children?

Umm Sulaym’s (ra) patience

Umm Sulaym’s (ra) exemplary patience and strength at the passing of her son is an incident that she is most known for.

Allah (swt) blessed Umm Sulaym (ra) and Abu Talha (ra) with a beautiful son Abu Umair. He was the apple of their eyes. One day, Abu Umair fell sick and he died. Abu Talha (ra) was away on a business trip. Umm Sulaym (ra) instructed everyone not to send the news to her husband. She wanted to inform him herself.

When he returned home, Umm Sulaym (ra) served him and allowed him to rest. She then informed the father of their son’s passing away. She said, “O Abu Talha! What is your opinion if some people have trusted you with something, and then they demand to take it back? Should their property not be returned to them?”

Abu Talha (ra) replied that it was their right to claim it back. Umm Sulaym (ra) said, “See our son was Allah’s (swt) Amanah; today, He has taken back His Amanah. Our son has passed away.” She then advised him to be patient.

The next day when Abu Talha (ra) informed the Prophet (sa) about the night’s incident, the Prophet (sa) supplicated for the family.

When Allah (swt) tests someone and they clear their test, He rewards them with something better. After the passing of Abu Umair, Umm Sulaym (ra) and her husband were blessed with another little boy. The Prophet (sa) named him Abdullah ibn Abu Talha and gave him Tahneek.

When the child is taken back, the mother advises the father to be patient. Generally, it is the woman who seeks consolation from others, but here we see that the woman is giving comfort to the man.

Abdullah ibn Abu Talha lived a long life and had many sons – each of them a memoriser of the Quran. This was all because of the Prophet’s (sa) supplication for the family, and their admirable patience and generosity for the sake of Allah (swt).

Lessons to draw: People are inflicted with trials to ascertain their conduct. How are they going to react? Are we going to complain while we do not own anything in this world? All that we enjoy are special favours of Allah (swt). A couple cannot have a child, unless Allah (swt) wills. When the child is taken back, the mother advises the father to be patient. Generally, it is the woman who seeks consolation from others, but here we see that the woman is giving comfort to the man.

(Adapted from the book: Seerat e Sahabiyat k Darakshan Pehlu by Mehmood Ahmad Ghazanfar and the lectures of Dr. Farhat Hashmi: Seerat e Sahabiyat)

Beyond imagination is the love of Allah (swt)- 2

keep-calm-because-allah-loves-you-2Continued from here

10:30 a.m. April 7th 2013

It was not that she had never been insulted before. Being a house help, she was used to people looking down at her. It was not that she had never been insulted because of money. It was always money which made her beg in front of people- people she worked hard for. She had been insulted all her life by them just because she asked for some extra money to pay for some tuition fees or an unexpected medical expense.

But it was different this time.

This time, it was Amir who insulted her.

This time, it was Amir who insulted her because of money.

Money she had borrowed from him some months ago. She never thought of it as a debt. It was her son’s money. She deserved to spend it. She never thought he would ask for it. And in such a way!

“I want my money back!” he frowned with not even a sprinkle of recognition in his eyes, “You said you’d give it back in two months. It has been four already. I’ve been very patient.  But now I need the money.”

“I….I’ll see what I can do……” was all she could mutter.

Why did Allah (swt) make her suffer in the hands of her own flesh? Were her life-long sufferings not enough?

The way Amir looked at her was still alive in her mind. She just couldn’t shake the image off. How can he be so cruel to his own mother? It was so hard for her to accept that fact.

11:30 a.m. March 15th 2013

“Assalamu alaikum.”

“Wa alaikum asalam Farri, How are you?”

“Alhumdulillah Bhai. I’ve made the envelopes as you told me to. I had been so busy with the kids’ exams that I just couldn’t do it before.”

“Oh, it’s ok Farri. I know it must be real hard with kids and all. Take your time. Once you’ll start this, everything will just fall into a routine and it won’t be hard every month. I really appreciate you doing this.”

“Oh Bhai, please don’t say it like this. I’m doing it for Allah (swt) and I’ll get the reward from Him Insha’Allah.”

“Let me know when you plan to deliver these envelopes.”

“Sure, Insha’Allah in a week.”

“Allah Hafiz.”

“Allah hafiz.”

11:00 a.m. April 7th 2013

She had been crying since morning. She was tired. She had to look for a way to return the money to her son. She just wouldn’t allow anyone to look down upon her even if it was her son. She had too much self-respect to allow that to happen. She opened her locker. She had been saving money for a bad time. She never knew her bad time was around the corner. She counted out the cash. It was only 4500. She had to return ten thousand! Where will she get the remaining money from? She just didn’t have the strength to think about it. Suddenly, she made a decision. She had a small pendant left of her jewellery. She had given whatever she had to her daughters and daughter in law. She was saving this pendant as it was very dear to her………the only gift left of her husband. But, the task was more important. She hurriedly went to the jewellery store in the market near her house. It was closed. Who opens a store at eleven a.m.? In her hurry, she didn’t even look at the time.

Clumsily, she walked back home. Everything was going wrong that day.

“Allah (swt) just does not care what happens to me. He just cares about the people who do big things in His way. I’m such a sinner, why would He waste His precious time on me?”

She just couldn’t stop herself from thinking.

9:00 a.m. April 7th 2013

“Assalamu alaikum Bhai, I’m going with Ahmer today to distribute the envelopes so thought I should let you know.”

“Wa alaikumasalam. You still didn’t? I thought you made the envelopes 15-fifteen days ago.”

“Yes Bhai, but Ahmer couldn’t find the time before today.”

“Hmm……I’ve already sent the next installment of the money. Make sure you don’t delay it this time.”

“No Bhai, this is my first time so I’m taking Ahmer along as he knows all the addresses. Once I know the addresses, I’ll do it alone next time.”

11:15 a.m. April 7th 2013

As she returned home to her room, she realized she only had few hours left before her son returned. She had to have the money before that. She just didn’t know what to do. Her eyes kept coming back to the prayer mat folded on the table.

“How can I ask Him? Why would he care?”

“But do you have anyone else to turn to?” someone pleaded inside her.

“I need the money now. How can He help now? I just don’t see any way.”

“Why don’t you just submit yourself? Put your worries in His hands and sit back.” The voice spoke again, but this time with determination.

She stood up and put her head on the floor crying hysterically.

“You know I have nowhere to go. You know I never asked anyone else for help. You know very well if You won’t help me, I’ll be helpless.”

She was just crying her heart out.

“I have no one else but You, Ya Rabbi. Don’t leave me now. I know I have sinned a lot and I’m not a very loyal servant to You, but still I am Your servant. You have to help me. I need You.”

She didn’t know what she was saying. She just wept uncontrollably in front of her Lord.

She was so absorbed in her conversation with her Allah (swt) that she did not hear the doorbell. It was when her grandson came running into the room saying someone had come to meet her. Then she raised her head from the floor.

11:30 a.m. April 7th 2013

“Assalamu alaikum auntie, how are you?”

“Wa alaikum assalam Farzana Beta, it’s been a long time since I last saw you.”

“Yes auntie, it’s been a long time. Were you crying? Your face looks so puffy?”

“I was just resting. Amir’s son told me that you had come. I didn’t even hear the doorbell.”

After twenty minutes, and a cup of tea, Farzana stood up to leave. She handed an envelope to her whispering, “Bhai sent this auntie. He had been planning this for about six months but it took so long to actually happen. He’ll send this every month from now.”

She started to show her disapproval, but Farzana just pressed her hand lovingly.

“Aren’t we your children auntie? Don’t you have any rights over us? Just take this as our mother. Please. You’ll make us very happy if you take this from us.”

12:00 p.m. April 7th 2013

Her hands were trembling as she opened the envelope in the privacy of her room. It was 10-ten thousand rupees,  exactly ten thousand. The same amount she needed. The same amount she had been begging Allah (swt) for. He did listen. He did care. He did answer. She was overwhelmed with emotions.

“Ya Rabbi, You helped me from a way that I never thought existed. I was so foolish to think so low of You. You are the owner of the heavens and the Earth and You love me. How could I think you’d leave me when I make Dua to you.” She was in Sujud again begging for His forgiveness for thinking Allah (swt) would not answer her Dua. Then, out of nowhere, a thought struck her mind! Wasn’t she upset? Didn’t she cry that morning? Didn’t she make Dua for the money? But Farzana said they had been planning to give this for six months. Had Allah (swt) heard her Dua even before she uttered it? Did Allah (swt) love her so much that even when she didn’t know she would need the money, he had started planning how she’d get the money? Can there be anyone else but Allah (swt) to love her? She had attained peace. She had found the greatest friend.

Beyond imagination is the love of Allah (swt)

sunset9:30 a.m. April 7th, 2013

Her hands trembled as she opened her prayer mat. Amir’s words echoed in her ears as she closed her eyes, and called upon the Almighty. She didn’t deserve that. Nobody deserved that! Why her out of all the people? She had wasted 25-twenty five glorious years of her life as a single parent raising 5-five kids. Five kids! No easy task. It was a roller coaster ride with more downs than ups. She went through a lot but came through. Came through to have what? What did she ever do to deserve that? Tears rolled down her cheeks as she whispered to her God.

She lived with her only son, Amir. Her daughters were married off and lived with their families. Her son was also married and had two sons of his own. Together, they portrayed a picture of a big happy family. Only she knew what she had to endure to get to that stage.  But she didn’t have any regrets. She was happy. She was content with what she had. She never complained. She never asked for more. Even though in her heart she knew she deserved more. She knew she was being tested and she strived to win. But what did she get after all those hard-spent years?

8:00 a.m. Dec 20th 2012


“Yes, Bhai? Assalamu alaikum.”

“Wa alaikumasalam Farzana, how are you and everyone else?”


“Did you get my email?”

“Yes Bhai, got it. I’m on it right now. Don’t worry. I’ll let you know in a week or so.”

“Ok, Ok. Take your time. I know you’re busy with your new job and all.”

“Yeah, but I’ll get it ready in a week.”

“Ok Farri, take care and give my love to the kids.”

9:40 a.m. April 7th 2013

She wanted to scream. She wanted to shout. But her lips were sealed. No words came out. Is this what it all ends up to? She survived mountains of miseries to get beaten by this? But this was the mother of all miseries, she must’nt forget. How was she going to survive this? She could feel the sweat trickle down her spine as she recalled the insult she was just put through. She wanted to talk to the Lord. She wanted to cry it all out. But she couldn’t. She had never felt so worthless in her life.

10:00 a.m. Dec 29th 2012

“Assalamu alaikum”

“Wa alaikumasalam Bhai. I was going to call you today.”

“Haha Farzana, that’s what you say every time I call you. So? Did you do the work?”

“Yes Bhai, almost done. It’s taking a lot more time than I thought it would. I didn’t imagine it would take so long.”

“Yes, it must be hard work. But consider it a great favour towards your brother.”

“Haha no Bhai, don’t take it wrong. I’m not complaining. In fact, I’m sorry that I can’t do it any quicker.”

“Take your time Farri. I don’t want you to rush through it. You doing that favour for me is a big help. Take care and give my love to the kids.”

9:50 a.m. April 7th 2013

She was in Sujud. Her whole body shook as she cried. She wasn’t weak. She wasn’t weak at all. She was as strong as a woman can be in this society- maybe even more! She didn’t let anything come between her and her kids’ well being. She met every obstacle headstrong. All she wanted in return was to have a peaceful life with her kids and grandkids- as the women of this society are brought up dreaming about. It was never in her slightest imagination that things would take such a bleak turn.

‘Why did You leave me like this?’ she whispered to her Lord, ‘is this how You reward me, pay me for all the sacrifices I made?’

This was not the woman she used to be. Today’s event showed her that she was the one meant to suffer from the beginning. No matter what she did, no matter how strong she became, she was still a weak woman meant to suffer in the hands of the men in her life. And this time that man was her own flesh and blood; her son, Amir.

9:30 p.m. Jan 23rd 2013

“Assalamu alaikum”

“Wa alaikum assalam Bhai.”

“Heard about your father in law’s death.”

“Yes bhai. It was so tragic. He was in such good health. It all happened in a week. The kids are all in a shock. They just can’t accept their Dada is no more with them.”

“Yes, it must be the hardest for kids. Give them some time. They’ll be ok.”

“Yes, Bhai. I had been so busy for the last two weeks, I just couldn’t work on the list Bhai.”

“Of course farri, I wouldn’t even worry about that now.”

“I know Bhai. I just feel so ashamed. You told me to do it such a long time ago and I still couldn’t do it.”

“Well, you will do it eventually right? So don’t worry about it.”

“Yeah Bhai, I’ll do it as soon as the kids get settled”

10:10 a.m. April 7th 2013

She no longer had any hope. Good deeds and sacrifices were of no worth in the eyes of God. She suffered all her life alone with 5-five little kids thinking she was being tested and once she proves herself, it will all be over. She’ll see better days. She didn’t lose hope even when her son couldn’t get a degree from a renowned university because she couldn’t afford it. She didn’t lose hope even when her son couldn’t get a good job because he didn’t have a fancy degree. She didn’t lose hope even when she was forced to live in a rundown apartment which she couldn’t afford to paint. She had hope that good days will come- but not anymore. God didn’t care about her. He had better things to do.

11:00 a.m. Feb 13th 2013

“I got your mail sis. It was such a big help!”

“I’m so sorry it took me so long. All I had to do was make a list of our relatives who were having a rough time here. It wasn’t so hard. I just couldn’t find time.”

“It’s all right. You did do it. That’s all that matters. Now all I have to do is send you the money. You’ll then have to make different envelopes of them and send them to the different addresses you’ve sent me. I’ll let you know how much to whom, Ok?”

“Ok, Bhai. And Bhai, I think it’s a very noble thing you’re doing- keeping record of all the less privileged in the family and sending them money. I think you’re doing an awesome job!”

“Thanks Farri, it’s the least I can do. On my last trip, I saw them living so miserably it broke my heart. I hope this money I send them each month makes up for the things I could’ve done while living there.”

“Yes, I’m sure they’ll all really appreciate it once they get the money.”

10:20 a.m. April 7th 2013

Why did she even think God would actually care about her? She was a nobody. God only cared for people who did big things for Him. She didn’t. All she did was raise five kids and somehow screwed up that too. Wasn’t God there when she was having a hard time feeding the kids with a low paying job as a house help? Didn’t God see how she struggled to get her daughters married off at the right time? Apparently not or He would’ve had some pity on her.

9:30 a.m. March 1st 2013

“Assalamu alaikum”

“Wa alaikum assalam, Farri. I’ve sent the money. You’ll get it in two days time. Then you’ll have to make separate envelopes and deliver the money. I’ve also sent you the email telling how much money to whom.”

“Ok Bhai. Don’t worry. I’ll take care of it.”

“You just don’t know how much I appreciate what you’re doing Farri.”

“No Bhai, I’m doing it for myself. I want to make my contribution in this good work.”

“May Allah (swt) reward you for it.”

[To be continued Insha Allah…]

From Ignorance to Enlightenment – Tumadir bint Amr (ra)

lilyfloThe daughter of Amr ibn Harith, and the wife of Rawaha ibn Abdul Aziz Sulma,  Tumadir (ra) was named so because of her extremely fair complexion. She is also known as “Khansa” because of her flat and short nose. This title was given to her by Rasulullah (sa).

The Arabic Poetess

Tumadir (ra) was a woman of multiple qualities. She was courageous, determined, strong, intelligent, eloquent, and beautiful. But what made her stand out was her poetry.

She had two brothers Sakhr and Muwaiya whom she dearly loved. When they were murdered, she recited elegiac verses that were later compiled as a Dewan. Whoever heard these verses would begin crying. Considered to be the best female poet in Arabic literature, her compositions have also been translated in the French language.

A Loving Sister

Tumadir (ra) was married to a rich man who did not know how to manage his wealth. His senseless spending led them to tatters. When he had wasted all his wealth, they approached Tumadir’s brother Sakhr for help. Her brother gathered all his belongings and divided them into two. He then asked his sister to choose whichever portion pleased her. They gathered the stuff and returned home. Soon they were back to poverty. The generous brother again gathered his belongings, divided them into two, and told his sister to take whichever portion pleased her. His wife complained, but the brother did not stop giving.

Therefore, when he passed away Tumadir (ra) commented: “My brother was so generous with me that each time we were in need, he gathered all his wealth and divided it into two. Can’t I be generous with him in my mourning?”

One day, Umar (ra) asked her about the dark circles around her eyes. She replied that it was due to her crying. Umar (ra) reminded her that they were dwellers of hell. Tumadir (ra) replied that earlier she used to cry on their murder, and then she cried because they died as unbelievers.

Tumadir (ra) replied that earlier she used to cry on their murder, and then she cried because they died as unbelievers.

Lessons to draw: What kind of siblings are we? Are we generous or stingy? Do we care about our siblings? And most importantly, do we care about our family’s and our own hereafter?

Tumadir’s Conversion to Islam

Tumadir (ra) converted to Islam along with her sons when a delegation of her tribe visited the Prophet (sa). When the Prophet (sa) met Khansa (ra), he requested her to recite some poetry. He also testified as her being the greatest poet when a delegation from Banuti claimed to be the best.

Lessons to draw: The Prophet (sa) encouraged people for their distinctive talents and did not keep back from complimenting them.

A Brave and Patient Mother

When the Battle of Qadsiyah was announced, her sons packed up to participate. Knowing that this might be her last meeting with her sons, Tumadir (ra) said,

“O my dear sons! You accepted Islam willingly and migrated on your choice. By Allah (swt), other than whom there is no real God, you are a son of man and a mother who gave birth to you.

Enter with complete willingness and valour when the battle becomes intense. Then you will either succeed as a victor bringing along war booty or you will return to your Lord as His guest and as a martyr.

I neither cheated your father nor humiliated your maternal uncles, and I did not let anything mix with your lineage. You know very well what great reward there is in fighting with the unbelievers. Know this too very well that the eternal house is better than the perishable house.

Allah (swt) says: O you who believe! Endure and be more patient (than your enemy), and guard your territory by stationing army units permanently at the places from where the enemy can attack you, and fear Allah, so that you may be successful. (Al-Imran 3:200)

When you wake up in the morning with health and well-being, enter the battlefield while being conscious of fighting with your enemy. Enter with complete willingness and valour when the battle becomes intense. Then you will either succeed as a victor bringing along war booty or you will return to your Lord as His guest and as a martyr. In both the situations, success will kiss your feet.”

Her speech motivated the sons. They knew they were to return either as a victor or a martyr. They were obedient to their mother and strong in their faith. These qualities made them fearless and determined. The Muslims won the battle, but Khansa (ra) lost all four of her sons.

While earlier, she had violently mourned her brothers’ death, this time she neither tore off her clothes nor beat her chest or wailed. Her ignorance had ended with her conversion to Islam. She was a believer then. She knew that Islam did not accept such way of mourning.

She thanked Allah (swt) for choosing all four of her sons for martyrdom and honouring her by it

She had recited elegiac poetry in her brother’s remembrance but that time her words were different. She thanked Allah (swt) for choosing all four of her sons for martyrdom and honouring her by it. She also prayed for His Mercy and asked Him to allow her to enter Paradise with her sons.

Lessons to draw:This is called entering into enlightenment from ignorance. Her entire perspective about life changed with her conversion to Islam. She was not angry at Allah’s decision. She did not lose her senses. Rather used this painful time to supplicate to Him.

Adapted from the book: Hayat e Sahabiyat k Darakshan Pehlu by and the lectures of Dr. Farhat Hashmi: Seerat e Sahabiyat.