Sickness- A blessing in disguise

blessingSubhan’Allah, we have such a blessed gift of Allah (swt) – such a blessed gift, known as sickness. Did you ever know that sickness is a gift? It’s one of the few things that instantly draw you close to Allah (swt). You have no option, especially when medicine has been given to you, then you realise that you need to develop a link with your Maker. And that is a gift of Allah (swt). If that is what caused you to earn Paradise, then it is the best thing that could have happened to you. May Allah (swt) grant us cure. Ameen.

Some people never read Salah. Never ever. The day they cannot move anymore, they want to read Salah while sitting. Alhumdulillah! Beautiful! At least now you’re reading Salah- even though you’re now sitting, Subhan’Allah. It’s a gift of Allah (swt). So, Allah (swt) watches you, He sees you are ill, He sees you are sick. That’s a gift of Allah (swt). He knows. He made you that way because He loves you, and the Hadeeth says: ‘When Allah (swt) loves a worshipper, He tests him.’ He gives him more tests. Hence, Allah (swt) tests you. Allah (swt) will test you.

Sickness – Boon or bane?

Then you start crying to Allah (swt), helplessly. And, when you turn to Allah (swt), and obviously, there are two things that can happen- when you are sick and ill, Shaytan can get a hold of you, or spirituality can get a hold of you, religiousness can get a hold of you. So you need to be careful, it’s like treading a tightrope.

You’ll have someone who looks like a religious person and he says, ‘Hey, I can cure you.’ And you say, ‘Okay, cure is in the hands of Allah (swt), obviously- but let’s see what you have to say.’ Or if they’re giving you for example, some herbal medication or some ZamZam, or they’re giving you honey, and for example, the black seed and these things that are beneficial; various other items or they give you a diet to tell you, ‘You know what, try and abstain from this type of food; and try to eat this type of food, it’s high in mineral and vitamin.’ Alhumdulillah, we understand it.

Empty mind- A devil’s workshop

But, the minute they tell you, ‘Listen, stand on your left foot for three minutes and start looking up in the sky. And hold five leaves in your right hand and then you tell someone to put a piece of lemon in your mouth, and do that five times a day.’ You need to know that is Shaytan. Complete Shaytan. Allah (swt) is going to ask you. That is the devil, Wallahi. You need to know- where did they come from? This is nothing that makes sense. It’s not medication, it’s not herbal medication, it is superstition. It is the devil. No matter what the person who gave you this looks like, this is wrong. You need to have common logical sense that is unacceptable. This is Allah (swt); He’s going to ask you about this gift.

Early bird catches the worm

At the same time, your heart becomes softened, and you turn to Allah (swt) and cry. So your Salah, you don’t miss. Why? Because you have a problem. And, what happens when you have a major issue? Subhan’Allah. You get up a little bit earlier than Salat ul Fajr for another Salah that is known as Tahajjud. Isn’t it? You are up very early and you say, ‘Sister’, or if your husband says, ‘Hey wifey, why are you up so early?’ and you say, ‘You know, I have a problem, so that is why I am up.’ Subhan’Allah. May Allah (swt) grant us ease. Ameen.

So you are up very early and you cry to Allah (swt). This is why Allah (swt) makes it very beautifully clear where He says, “And when We show favour to man, he withdraws and turns away, but when evil touches him, then he has recourse to long supplications.” (Fussilat 41:51)

You have nothing missing in your life, absolutely nothing. Your health is okay, your wealth is okay, your children are okay, your work is okay, you salary is okay, your situation is okay, everything is beautiful. You are enjoying- eating out every other day, you have a holiday, everywhere you want to go, you have gone, and so on and you still keep on going and everything is going smoothly. Then what’s the point of knowing Allah (swt)? A lot of the people would say what’s the point of knowing? That is the time you’re supposed to get closer to Allah (swt). The winner is the one who has the Dunya and the Akhirah.

In Surah Al-Baqarah, Allah (swt) explains to us this Dua, this beautiful Dua, ‘And of them there are some who say: “Our Lord! Give us in this world that which is good and in the Hereafter that which is good, and save us from the torment of the Fire!” (Al-Baqarah 2:201) That is the beauty; you want goodness here and there. That is obviously, not everyone will get this, but that is the ultimate gift of Allah (swt).

If you have an issue, and it is quite normal to have issues, problems, difficulties, learn to turn to Allah (swt) and Allah (swt) alone. It is when things go wrong that people begin to make supplications, long Dua, prolonged Dua. You know, if you see a man walking in the Masjid, and he sits in the Masjid, asking Allah (swt). And if you find him after Salah, he is sitting there after Salat ul Asr, and you go for Salat ul Maghrib and you find him- he is sitting in the same place, crying and asking Allah (swt). What do you think? You think this man has got a big problem, he is sitting on exactly the same spot, and he is asking Allah (swt). So, that is the description of Surah Fussilat in the verse I read, “When we have bestowed upon man, we have given him, he turns away, on his side. And when evil befalls him, he makes prolonged prayer.”

Spiritual analysis via sickness

Now let’s analyze- spiritually, which is the better condition? Is it better to turn away or is it better to be engaged in prolonged prayer? What is the gift of Allah (swt) here for us? May Allah (swt) bless us. Ameen.

Why is it that old people become sick, invalid? When you’re old, you find it a little difficult to walk. May Allah (swt) grant Shifa and cure to all those who are ill. Ameen. And then sometimes you cannot walk, you have to sit down; you become old, and then, pass away.

Why is it that Allah (swt) has kept it such in the older people? Why isn’t it that in the middle of your life? He makes you sick, but then healthy once again. It is Allah’s (swt) gift that when you get old, you start suffering pain, you start turning to Allah (swt), preparing for the day you will meet with Him. It’s amazing. You know that it’s time to go. You know it. It’s a fact. Why? Because you’re old, things change, everything happens and everything starts moving in a direction that keeps on reminding you, ‘I’m no longer the little teenager I used to be.’

May Allah (swt) grant us the ability to thank Him for His gifts. Ameen.

Transcribed by Asma Imran

[Part 2] Repent Now – He (swt) is Waiting!

dewdropsThe repentance of Asiya bint Mazahim, wife of the Pharoah

Asiya was the wife of the Pharaoh. Even though she was the queen and had everything in the world, she chose to repent to Allah (swt). She chose the permanent afterlife over this temporary life. She knew well that turning towards Allah (swt) would make her lose everything; she might even lose her life. In spite of all that, she did not get attached to this world and believed in Allah (swt). She prepared herself to repent and do good deeds. The Pharaoh commanded her to leave Allah’s (swt) path but when she refused, he commanded his men to hang her with nails in her hands and legs. When this too did not work for the Pharaoh, he ordered his men to throw a big rock on her body. Asiya remained patient and steadfast, even she was sentenced to death. When she was going through all this torment, she knew that it was the best time to ask from her Lord (swt). Allah (swt) mentions her Dua in the Quran:

“And Allah presents an example of those who believed: the wife of Pharaoh, when she said: ‘My Lord! Build for me a home with You in Paradise, and save me from Pharaoh and his work, and save me from the people, who are Zalimun.’” (At-Tahrim 66:11)

The love and trust she had for Allah (swt) is evident in her Dua. In the same manner, Allah (swt) accepted and loved her Dua and made it a part of the Quran so that it remains documented till the Day of Resurrection (Qiyamah) and becomes a lesson for the believers. She has a high position of greatness, honour, and dignity for her repentance, faith, and patience.

Ibn Abbas (rtam) reported that the Messenger of Allah (swt) drew four lines on the ground and asked: “Do you know what this is?” The companions answered: “Allah (swt) and His Messenger (sa) know best.” The Messenger of Allah (sa) explained: “The best women of Paradise are Khadijah bint Khuwaylid (rtaf), Fatimah bint Muhammad (rtaf), Asiyah bint Mazahim, wife of the Pharaoh, and Maryam bint Imran. May Allah (swt) be pleased with them.” (Ahmad)

Conditions of repentance

The three basic conditions of repentance are as follows:

  1. Abstain from committing sins.
  2. Regret committing sins.
  3. Resolve firmly to never sin again.

How to atone for wronging other people

If our sin involved wronging another person, there is an additional condition to redress that wrong. If it involved money, the money should be paid. If it involved false accusation, the falsehood should be cleared up. If redress is not possible, the person’s pardon should be sought.

Some sins exist on the level of society at large such as ignorance, backwardness, civil conflict, prejudice, and a culture of intolerance. These are some of the most serious sins, and we should certainly repent from them.

The Prophet’s (sa) repentance

Our beloved Prophet (sa) used to ask Allah (swt) for forgiveness seventy times a day. Even though he was purified of sins, this was his level of piety. Allah (swt) increases your level of faith and rewards when you do Istighfar (repent).

The Prophet (sa) said: “By Allah (swt), I seek Allah’s (swt) forgiveness, and I turn to Him in repentance more than seventy times each day.” (Bukhari)


The Prophet (sa) said: “Our Lord comes down to the lowest heaven when one-third of the night remains, and says: ‘Who will call upon Me so that I may answer him? Who will ask Me so that I may give to him? Who will seek My forgiveness so that I may forgive him?’” (Muslim)

Let’s sincerely repent for our past sins and ask Allah (swt) to forgive us all: “Astaghfirullaha Rabbi Min Kulli Dhanbin (Zambin) Wa Atubu Ilaihi (Ilaih)” (“I seek the protection of Allah (swt), my Lord, from all my sins, and I turn towards Him (in repentance)”).

[Part 1] Repent Now – He (swt) is Waiting!

uturn“But whosoever repents after his crime and does righteous good deeds (by obeying Allah), then verily, Allah will pardon him (accept his repentance). Verily, Allah is Oft Forgiving, Most Merciful.” (Maidah 5:39)

Allah (swt) has sent us all on this earth to worship Him only. This life is momentary and full of trials and adversities. We are given a method to live this life but as humans, we are likely to make mistakes along the way. There will be daily encounters with the Shaytan. We have to make choices every now and then in this temporary life.

Repent in good and bad times

Life is a continuous struggle. We fall and we get up again but the struggle continues till our last breath. Allah (swt) tests us every day through blessings and through trials. A Muslim is patient when he is going through a trial, and in times of blessings, he is grateful to Allah (swt). Thus, a Muslim is in a state of either Sabr (patience) or Shukr (gratefulness).

When we face difficulties in life, we are worried and often repent. We ask Allah (swt) for His forgiveness and pray more. But as soon as the tough period is over, we gradually lose contact with our Lord (swt) and get busy in our worldly matters. Some people need a few such incidents to make sincere Taubah; but for others, a whole lifetime is not enough, as they forget their Master (swt) and continue to commit sins.

Sins may be huge but they are not greater than Allah’s (swt) mercy

Abu Hurairah (rtam) narrated that the Prophet (sa) said: “When Allah (swt) created the creation, He wrote in His Book. He wrote (that) about Himself, and it is placed with Him on the Throne: Verily My mercy overcomes My anger.” (Bukhari)

People often think that their sins are huge, but they do not realize the enormity of Allah’s (swt) forgiveness. He waits patiently for His people to turn to Him in repentance: “O you who believe! Turn to Allah with sincere repentance! It may be that your Lord will expiate from you your sins, and admit you into Gardens under which rivers flow (Paradise).” (At-Tahrim 66:8)   

Often, when a Muslim’s faith becomes weak, he may be overwhelmed by his desires. Shaitan makes the forbidden attractive to him, so he wrongs himself and commits sins. Allah (swt) accepts the repentance of anyone who repents sincerely after doing wrong as He (swt) is the most Forgiving and the most Merciful.

Repent from your heart

Repentance does not mean to utter certain words without thinking. A Muslim should repent honestly from his heart, realizing his wrongdoings, regretting his sins, and offering a sincere apology and promise to his Lord (swt) not to repeat the ill actions.

Repent before death

The doors of Allah’s (swt) forgiveness remain open until a Muslim faces his death. Allah (swt) mentions in the Quran:

“And of no effect is the repentance of those who continue to do evil deeds until death faces one of them and he says: ‘Now I repent;’ nor of those who die while they are disbelievers. For them We have prepared a painful torment.” (An-Nisa 4:18)

The Prophet (sa) said: “Allah (swt) extends His hand at night to forgive those who sinned during that day, and He extends His hand during the day to forgive those who sinned during the night. This will continue to be the case until the sun rises from the west.” (Muslim)

We may get tired of repenting but Allah (swt) never tires of forgiving

We may get tired of committing sins, but He never gets tired of forgiving His slaves. Allah (swt) loves the repentance of His slaves and expresses joy over it. The Prophet (sa) said: “When a person repents, Allah (swt) rejoices more than any one of you would rejoice after finding a camel you had lost in the desert.” (Bukhari)

Taubah: Long Over Due

erasingmistakeRamadan is  a month filled with blessings from Allah (swt). Once this blessed month arrives, one realizes its importance. We are in need for spiritual rejuvenation and revival of  the heart with constant remembrance of Allah (swt). But why?

Because  little does our heart fear Allah’s (swt) wrath and little do we hope for Allah’s (swt) mercy upon us. We have a heart that doesn’t shed tears for the sake of Allah (swt) and that doesn’t yearn to meet its Creator.

Fast to heal your heart!

Why do we feel so numb when Allah’s (swt) words are recited to us or we read them. While secretly we long for tears or some expression of joy only to find ourselves unmoved by the Divine Discourse? Why? Why? Why? The answer lies in the verse of the Quran that mentions this purpose of fasting in Ramadan:

“O you who believe! Observing As-Saum (the fasting) is prescribed for you as it was prescribed for those before you, that you may become Al-Muttaqun.” (Al-Baqarah 2:183)

We hear this verse over and over again; but in all honesty, for many of us it has lost its meaning. Ramadan comes and goes, but nothing changes. We are still inclined towards sins, still mindful of what the world thinks of us but not mindful of Allah’s (swt) commands.

Just imagine- if we were to become of the Al-Muttaqun after this Ramadan, how different we would be? Taqwa has many meanings: one of which is God Consciousness. To always know that Allah (swt) is Ever-Present and we are accountable for all our deeds. If we would always remember that Allah (swt) is watching us, how different would are actions be? Our priorities would change and sins would become disgusting and vulgar to us, as they deserve to be. But sadly, the fact is that sins are not disgusting to us anymore.

Flaunt or not?

Is it not true? We may openly talk about our sins and may flaunt them like they are accolades of the highest degree. Look at me! I am so bold. Where is this boldness when it comes to worshipping Allah (swt)? When it comes to spreading the teachings of the Quran and Sunnah? We feel shy and ashamed when it comes to doing what is right. We lose all vigour to please Allah (swt) like it’s the most tedious task in the world. Our heart doesn’t even want to consider the right choices; because it is afraid of those difficulties that lie ahead.

It is true that in this time and age, wrong doing has been made easy and attractive to us with slogans like “Flaunt it; if you got it!” and “Gotta have it!” We find ourselves swept in the whirlwind of human desires; where because of the lack of God consciousness, we are easily tempted to follow suit. So much talk of wrong doing and evil makes one’s headspin.

Is there any hope/solution?

Alhumdulillah yes! In Islam Allah (swt) gives us the best solutions to our problems.

While the world may not be willing to forgive our faults, our mistakes, Allah(swt) is Ghafoor-ur-Raheem (Most Forgiving ,Most Merciful) He not only forgives us, but is more than willing to forget; but only if we make true Taubah to him.

The moment is now. In these quiet and serene Ramadan days, let’s truly spend time analyzing ourselves and asking, “What sins have I done?

Gates wide open for repentance!

The kind of the Taubah that has been so encouraged in this month. While the devils are chained; let’s take a moment to contemplate:

While we were so busy pleasing our Nafs and being Shaytan’s partner in crime. What did we gain? It’s not a rocket science. We are weighed down by our sins; sins that we have been accumulating all year round. As a result, our hearts are numb up on the mention of Allah (swt) and we can’t motivate ourselves to do good deeds. We don’t fear Him like we should; in fact some of us satisfy ourselves saying: “Allah (swt) samajh jaeyga.” (Allah (swt) will understand)

The moment is now. In these quiet and serene Ramadan days, let’s truly spend time analyzing ourselves and asking, “What sins have I done?” In fact, make a list of all the bad things you can think of. It may be long before you can stop writing. Or maybe, you can’t even remember the many times you have repeated the same sin in different situations. Make sincere Taubah for each sin you remember and even for the ones you can’t. Ramadan in a golden opportunity for forgiveness:

“Whoever fasts Ramadan out of faith and hope for reward, his past sins will be forgiven.” (Bukhari)

All that is required is to sincerely repent and pray to Allah (swt) for forgiveness. Truly Ramadan is such a blessed month. Let’s do the Taubah that is long overdue. Taubah that can help us finally be excited about doing good deeds; no matter how small they are. Taubah that makes us increase our sense of accountability in the court of Allah (swt) so that even when we slightly err, we do Taubah fearing Allah’s (swt) anger.

May Allah (swt) give us Taufiq to sincerely repent to Him and never go back to doing those wretched bad deeds ever again. Ameen.

Pearls of Peace: An extract from Surah Kahf

surah_kahhfA journey for Allah (swt) – an inspiring story!

This Surah begins with the mention of some youth who lived under a tyrant leader. Because of their community’s deviance from the right path, the youth decided to leave them and sought refuge in a cave. Fearing their community and feeling lost, they prayed to Allah (swt), “(Remember) when the young men fled for refuge (from their disbelieving folk) to the Cave, they said: Our Lord! Bestow on us mercy from Yourself, and facilitate for us our affair in the right way!” (Al-Kahf 18:10)

And Allah (swt) answered their prayer and protected them by making them sleep for several years. One reason for losing one’s peace is being in the wrong company. We see people around us indulging in such acts that are contrary to the Quran and Sunnah, and we don’t see a way out for ourselves. In such moments, we should remind ourselves the story of these strong young men. They migrated for the sake of Allah (swt). Their migration was not for any worldly need, but to protect their Iman.

See no evil, hear no evil and speak no evil

This is a powerful statement! Another stirring statement is: garbage in, garbage out. Our brains have the ability to instantly process everything that we come across. If we read or watch filth; that is what is going to come out of our mouth. We will no more be conscious of what words we are uttering or what actions we are doing. Consider for example, you pass by a Masjid and you see people entering in flocks. You have an urge to follow them. You enter the Masjid and you are spiritually uplifted. Now you are with your friends. They offer you a glass of alcohol and you refuse it. They insist you to have a sip. You refuse but they push you. You give in and take a sip. You begin enjoying your drink. What happens next? You are addicted.

A sincere advice

Change your company and reform yourself. Protect your eyes, mouth and ears. Avoid juicy stories and vice. This is why our Prophet (sa) taught us to ask Allah (swt) for beneficial knowledge and protection of our eyes and ears. The youth discussed in Surah Al-Kahf did not just distance themselves from the wrongdoing people but also made Dua. Never leave Dua. It is your connection with Allah (swt) via which you can ask Him for goodness.

It is a mercy of Allah (swt) that He has informed man of both, the truth and the falsehood. Mankind has been given a choice to follow whatever they desire, “And say: The truth is from your Lord. Then whosoever wills, let him believe, and whosoever wills, let him disbelieve.” (Al-Kahf 18:29) Beware these choices have consequences, “Verily, We have prepared for the Zalimun; a Fire whose walls will be surrounding them (disbelievers in the Oneness of Allah). And if they ask for help (relief, water, etc.) they will be granted water like boiling oil that will scald their faces. Terrible the drink, and an evil Murtafaqa (dwelling, resting place, etc.)!” (Al-Kahf 18:29)

Repentance – a way out!

While one is free to pick his path, he is not free to escape the punishment. Every action of man is being recorded in a book, “And the record [of deeds] will be placed [open], and you will see the criminals fearful of that within it, and they will say, ‘Oh, woe to us! What is this book that leaves nothing small or great except that it has enumerated it?’ And they will find what they did present [before them]. And your Lord does injustice to no one.” (Al-Kahf 18:49) To save oneself from such an end, one must hasten to seek repentance. Because sincere repentance is the only thing that can wipe out our bad deeds. When you have shed sincere tears of repentance, compete to increase your good deeds. Don’t waste time; because we will be in need of a lot good deeds in the Hereafter. May Allah (swt) bless us with steadfastness in our repentance. Ameen.

How merciful is Allah (swt)?

Not only does Allah (swt) make us aware of the right and the wrong, but He is also willing to forgive our wrongdoings; if we turn to Him. Sadly how ungrateful is man- forever complaining and quarrelling, “And indeed We have put forth every kind of example in this Quran, for mankind. But, man is ever more quarrelsome than anything.” (Al-Kahf 18:54) We argue over Allah’s (swt) commands and Prophet’s (sa) tradition; showing disrespect and ingratitude to both of them. We should immediately surrender to the commands of Allah (swt) as soon as we learn about them.

Are we unintentionally ignoring Allah (swt)?

Allah (swt) tells us to come to the right path. But we turn away. “And who does more wrong than he who is reminded of the Ayat of his Lord, but turns away from them forgetting what (deeds) his hands have sent forth. Truly, We have set veils over their hearts lest they should understand this (the Quran), and in their ears, deafness. And if you (O Muhammad (sa)) call them to guidance, even then they will never be guided.” (Al-Kahf 18:57)

When a person chooses to ignore Allah (swt), then Allah (swt) too is not interested in guiding such a person. On the contrary, the one who loves Allah (swt); He opens his heart to comprehend the beneficial knowledge. Today, when one learns of a football match in his city or perhaps a lawn launch; we leave every other worldly task and run to be the first ones to stand in queue. But when call for prayer is given from the mosque and we are promised a greater reward for standing in the first row with the angels; we sit back and turn our attention to something else. How ungrateful man really is! May Allah (swt) make us of those who run towards doing good. May He not make us of those whose hearts have been sealed. Ameen.

Who is your child’s superhero?

Another sad reality is that our children, as young as seven and eight years old, know the names of the entire football or cricket team; but they don’t know the names of the Prophets and their Companions. These were the people who strove with their life and wealth to spread and protect Allah’s (swt) religion. These were the people who were given the glad tiding of Paradise, and we are not interested in learning about them.

A scary reminder!

Allah (swt) says, “Say (O Muhammad (sa)): Shall We tell you the greatest losers in respect of (their) deeds? Those whose efforts have been wasted in this life while they thought that they were acquiring good by their deeds!” (Al-Kahf 18:103-104) What a scary reminder! The efforts of such a person are limited to the worldly life only and he has no concern for the Hereafter. When you invite such people to study Quran, learn one verse or a Dua, they come up with countless unnecessary tasks of this world.

While the game is on, we are at loss!

Whose loss will it be if we turn away from Allah (swt)? How many hours does a man spend at his job to get a salary at the end of the month? On average, we spend at least eight hours at work weekly. Then we get our pay cheque. We work approximately for 208 hours in a month like slaves to get that cheque. Allah (swt) offers us much greater reward; not only in this world, but an eternal life of bliss in the Hereafter. Unfortunately, we are too lethargic when it comes to obligatory prayers. How many times have we woken for Fajr before the call for prayer is even given? And how many times have we woken up at 3 a.m. without hitting the snooze button when a football match is on? Those who do wake up, they wake up to get done with it. Let us commit to fall in love with our prayer because we love Allah (swt), and we seek His love and His mercy.

The way we have messed up our priorities, shows how confused we are about our purpose in life. Not only are we confused about our purpose in life; but our worship too. We have strayed away from the path of Muhammad (sa) and invented our own ways of worship; which were neither taught by the Prophet (sa) nor practiced by his Companions (ra). The proponents of innovations say, “Say (O Muhammad (sa)): I am only a man like you. It has been inspired to me that your Ilah (God) is One AIlah (God i.e. Allah). So whoever hopes for the Meeting with his Lord, let him work righteousness and associate none as a partner in the worship of his Lord.” (Al-Kahf 18:110) Hold on to Quran and Sunnah and let not Shaytan deceive you.

(Adapted from Mufti Ismail Menk’s “Pearls of Peace” series, Cape Town, Ramadan 2013. The lecture can be listened to at this link.)

Pearls of Peace – An extract from Surah Nisa 1

pearls4Before we begin today’s Pearls of Peace, there’s a challenge for everyone reading this. The brother reciting the Quran in the Taraweeh is visually impaired, yet he has memorized the entire Quran by listening to his father and CDs. You and I have been blessed with eyes. We can see the beautiful world of Allah (swt). We can read all that we want and whatever we want. What efforts have we made to read and memorize the Book of Allah (swt)?

We now start with Surah An-Nisa, the Surah named after the women. This is the status of women in Islam. There’s an entire Surah named after the women while there’s no chapter in the Quran called Ar-Rijal (the men). In this Surah, Allah (swt) draws our attention towards the rights of a woman and warns us against usurping them.

Man vs. woman

He begins the Surah by saying, “O mankind! Be dutiful to your Lord, Who created you from a single person (Adam), and from him (Adam) He created his wife (Hawwa (Eve)), and from them both He created many men and women.”

Allah (swt) describes the creation of mankind- from a single father and a single mother to make us feel compassionate about each other. Then, He says, “and fear Allah through Whom you demand your mutual (rights), and (do not cut the relations of) the wombs (kinship).”

The mention of wombs is an indication that men and women are physically different and thus created for different purposes. Men cannot perform the roles of women and women cannot perform the roles of men. He ends the first verse by saying, “Surely, Allah is Ever an All-Watcher over you.” meaning Allah (swt) is watching how we treat one another.

Dignity of a woman

In order to know how to treat someone, we first need to learn about their status. The woman needs to know where she stands in the Sight of her Creator. She needs to know how to carry herself without compromising on her values. She cannot give in to peer pressure and go against the commands of Allah (swt). She must live such a life that her living confirms that she is a gift from Allah (swt).

Rights of orphans

After honouring women, Allah (swt) talks about another stratum of the society which is weak, but its status before Allah (swt) is really high. These are the orphans. Allah (swt) chose for his Last Messenger to be an orphan, and throughout the Quran we find many verses that remind us to be kind to this weak stratum of society and give them their rights.

In our society, when the father passes away, others relatives come and take charge over the wealth of the orphan children. While they are to act as custodians until the children attain the age of maturity, the guardians do not return them their wealth or they cheat them by understating their property. Allah (swt) says, “Verily, those who unjustly eat up the property of orphans, they eat up only a fire into their bellies, and they will be burnt in the blazing Fire!” (An-Nisa 4:10). The wealth of this world is not worth trading our peace and contentment for it. A person who cheats others cannot live a peaceful life.

Rights of women

There’s another type of cheating that is done at the time of marriage. Men don’t give their brides the bridal gift known as Mahr. Allah (swt) says, “And give to the women (whom you marry) their Mahr (obligatory bridal money given by the husband to his wife at the time of marriage) with a good heart…” (An-Nisa 4:4).

Women are often too shy to demand for it themselves; therefore Allah (swt) has made it a duty of the husbands to gift it to them. In Islam, a woman is a queen. When she is small she is looked after by the father. As she grows up and is married off, it becomes the duty of the husband to look after her needs. In absence of a father and a husband, the closest Mahram relations look after her. Allah (swt) gives women rights so that she is not treated as a commodity; as it used to happen in the ignorant days. In the pagan days, the male relatives would inherit the woman along with all her wealth. Allah (swt) says what belongs to woman remains with her.

Islamic law of inheritance

In verses 11 and 12, Allah (swt) informs us about the exact proportions of inheritance to be distributed among heirs. Some people say in Islam women are oppressed, they get less of what men receive.

We must acknowledge that the system of Allah (swt) is based on justice, as He says, “These are the limits (set by) Allah (or ordainments as regards laws of inheritance), and whosoever obeys Allah and His Messenger (Muhammad (as)) will be admitted to Gardens under which rivers flow (in Paradise), to abide therein, and that will be the great success..” (An-Nisa 4:13)

Consequences of defiance

One who follows the commands of Allah (swt) will attain peace in this life and the next. On the contrary, the one who finds flaws in Allah’s (swt) system can never live in peace in this life, and in the next he will face torment. This is what Allah (swt) talks about in the verse right after this, And whosoever disobeys Allah and His Messenger (Muhammad (as), and transgresses His limits, He will cast him into the Fire, to abide therein; and he shall have a disgraceful torment.” (An-Nisa 4:14)

By warning us of the consequences, it is clear that Allah (swt) wants the best for us. Let’s understand this through an example. A mother tells her children to do something and at the same time tells the repercussions of not following her instructions. She tells them, “If you do this I will give you such-and-such gift, but if you don’t do this, then watch out.” The mother does not want to hurt her children; however, it is in their best interests that she warns  them beforehand. Allah (swt) wants the best for us. He does not want us to suffer in this life or the next; therefore He has explained us the repercussions of not following His commands beforehand. May He allow us to surrender to His commands. Ameen.

Share of a woman

To briefly touch up on the share a woman gets, let’s look at what Allah (swt) says, “…if (there are) only daughters, two or more, their share is two thirds of the inheritance; if only one, her share is half.” (An-Nisa 4:11) No male takes this much percentage of wealth. Before we use our tongues to declare something ordained by Allah (swt), we must understand the Shariah. How can something that has been decided by Allah (swt) be wrong? The problem is that we value human opinions more than what Allah (swt) tells us. And this is the reason to why we have lost our peace.

Repentance – a peaceful move!

Some of us may have committed something wrong in our lives. We might not have given others their rights, mistreated orphans or spoken bad words about Allah’s (swt) laws. This brings us to repentance. Repentance is accepted only for those who do wrong in ignorance and then repent soon after. Allah (swt) says, “And of no effect is the repentance of those who continue to do evil deeds until death faces one of them and he says: “Now I repent;” nor of those who die while they are disbelievers. For them We have prepared a painful torment.” (An-Nisa 4:18)

Our dilemma is that we like to delay things till the last minute. Look at how do we treat our prayers. When the Muezzin gives a call for prayer, and that is when we get up for ablution. By then, we are left with little time to reach the Masjid and stand in the first row. Some of us delay our prayers to the point when only a few minutes are left for it to expire and that is when we get up for prayer. Will such a prayer be accepted? Likewise, a person who has been delaying repentance until the time he meets the angel of death, will his repentance be accepted? All of us want the best in this life, then why do we offer Allah (swt) a very poor quality of deeds? May Allah (swt) protect us and help us realize our mistakes. Ameen.


It’s Never too Late to Repent

rpetance(A condensed version of the talk “On repentance” by Sheikh Kamaluddin Ahmed)

Allah (swt) said in the Quran, “Leave (O mankind, all kinds of) sin, open and secret. Verily, those who commit sin will get due recompense for that which they used to commit.” (Al-Anam 6:120)

Hastening to perform Taubah for our sins

In other places in the Quran, Allah (swt) says, “O you who believe! Turn to Allah with sincere repentance.” (At-Tahrim 66:8 and Hud 11:3)

Now this word “Taubah” (repentance) is very interesting, because Allah (swt) says “Do Taubah towards Allah.” What it means is that repentance is (what you call in English) a “paradigm shift”. If you’re living a life of sin or are engrossed in one particular sin, you must totally turn away from the sin and orient yourself back towards Allah (swt). Someone who is distant from Allah (swt), His Book and His Messenger (sa) will find it difficult to leave sin.

Four things that ensure acceptance of our repentance

1.  Repent to Allah (swt) sincerely

The seeker must promise to Allah (swt) sincerely in his heart that he will never commit the sin again. People say, “How can we say that when we know we will do it again?”

Well, life is like a boxing match, where you have to get up every time you are knocked down. The coach would get happy if you manage to get up after every knock down. Similarly Allah (swt) loves those who try again and again for His Mercy. When your clothes get dirty, you don’t stop washing them thinking, “What is the use when we know that they will get dirty again?” Hence we need to wash ourselves, we need to purify our souls, our intentions hoping that Allah (swt) will forgive us and we won’t repeat that sin.

Once two young men were arguing and they went to an old man to settle their argument. They asked, “Who is more beloved to Allah (swt), he who sins and repents or he who never committed the sin in the first place?” The old man said, “I am not an Islamic scholar; I am a weaver. I can just tell that when I am weaving, I have to follow many threads on my loom. If a thread snaps, I tie it back, but from then on I keep an eye on that thread. So it may be that Allah (swt) keeps a special gaze of mercy on those who break away from Him, but tie themselves back through repentance.” Allah (swt) says in the Quran, “O man! What has made you careless concerning your Lord, the Most Generous?” (Al-Infitar 82:6)

When your clothes get dirty, you don’t stop washing them thinking, “What is the use when we know that they will get dirty again?” Hence we need to wash ourselves, we need to purify our souls

2. Forgive others for the sake of Allah (swt)    

It comes in a Hadeeth: “On the Night of Qadr everyone’s prayers are answered except the person who has malice and a grudge against people in his heart.” (Shuab ul Iman)

Hence, we should forgive even if we are justified in being angry. Allah (swt) is justified in being angry with us when we sin; are we more justified in being angry than He is? It would have been completely appropriate for Allah (swt) to punish us immediately whenever we sinned. The second we looked at something that we shouldn’t have, He should have made us blind. In such a case, all of us would be blind, deaf, mute and crippled. If we wish Allah (swt) to accept our repentance, we must forgive others.

Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi (ra) writes in one of his books that once there was a man and wife. The wife did something very bad, so much so that the man would have been justified in divorcing her. She asked him to forgive her. He thought, “O Allah (swt), I forgive her for Your sake.” Later the man passed away and somebody saw him in a dream. The man said in the dream, “Allah (swt) forgave me for everything. Allah (swt) said that you forgave her because she was My servant, I forgive you because you are My servant.”

3. Abandon bad company   

We must keep ourselves away from the people who bring us closer to sin. Every night in the Isha prayer in Dua Qunut, we declare “O Allah (swt) I will isolate myself and I will repudiate that person who disobeys You.” A bad friend is worse than a snake because when a snake bites you, it sends you to your death, but a bad friend sends you to hellfire. A bad friend is even worse than Shaitan because Shaitan only whispers, but a bad friend takes you toward the sin.

4. Increase in your good deeds

People, who fall into any sin feel ashamed about it and so they stop praying, thinking that how can they face Allah (swt).

Quran says, “Say: O ‘Ibadi (My slaves) who have transgressed against themselves (by committing evil deeds and sins)! Despair not of the Mercy of Allah, verily Allah forgives all sins. Truly, He is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” (Az-Zumar 39:53).

How does Allah (swt) address these people? He doesn’t say “you sinners”, He says “My servants/slaves”. He doesn’t kick them out of the servant hood. He still takes them under His Custody.

Rewards for the Repenting Ones

1. A clean slate

Once repentance is accepted, the person becomes as if he doesn’t have any sins. We should make Dua that Allah (swt) erases each and every aspect of sin from us; May He remove even the memory of the pleasure of the sin.

2. Protection by Allah (swt) from Shaitan

Allah (swt) protects the person from Shaitan. Quran says, “Verily! My slaves (i.e the true believers of Islamic Monotheism), you have no authority over them. And All-Sufficient is your Lord as a Guardian.” (Al-Isra 17:65)

We cannot fight Shaitan, we can only seek Allah’s (swt) protection from him.

3. Acquiring an esteemed rank with Allah (swt)

Allah (swt) will include the person among the ranks of His Beloved. Quran says, “…Truly, Allah loves those who turn unto Him in repentance and loves those who purify themselves.” (Al-Baqarah 2:222)

There was a man called Hasan al Basri who taught Quran on the command of Hazrat Ali (ra). One of his students was a widowed woman who dedicated her life to raising her son. Her son was a big sinner. She always tried to work on her son and take him to Hasan al Basri to make him leave his sinful ways. The son remained stubborn and did not leave sin. This continued until the time of his death. The mother cried and asked him to repent. Finally the son said that he felt the error of his ways and wanted to repent. He wanted Hasan al Basri to lead his funeral prayer. The mother went to the Sheikh but he refused saying that her son was just fooling her again. When the son got to know about this, he told his mother to drag his corpse around the city and show the people the fate of a sinner and sadly he passed away. Later Hasan al Basri went to meet the mother. He told her that after she had left, he heard a voice saying, “You think you are the friend of Allah (swt), but you refuse to pray the funeral prayer of His friend?”

My Journey Towards Allah’s Love

keep-calm-because-allah-loves-you-2It’s neither an inspiring story, nor is it life changing. But yes, it is a heart changing story. It has changed my perspective about Allah (swt). I have understood that ‘one cannot cheat Allah (swt)’. Most of us tell our children to ‘fear Allah (swt)’. When we do wrong, Allah (swt) will punish us.However, very few people teach their offspring that Allah (swt) does not like to punish; if He wills, He can guide us to the right path, but this will happen only if we understand His love and seek His forgiveness. I was also scared of Allah (swt), but I never really loved Him (swt). His existence frightened me, but never gave me the strength to fight the evil.

I was once a girl who was God-fearing but not exactly very pious. I fell prey to my own wrong desires and went astray from the straight path. Being a married woman, I started falling for someone else. In doing so, I fooled my husband and deceived my loved ones. This betrayal was like playing with fire, without thinking about my values and responsibilities. It was a trap of Shaytan and without realizing my mistake, I was attracted to it. Since life wasn’t easy for me, I found excuses for my behaviour. I convinced myself I was helpless.

I was not being punished but actually Allah (swt) was showing me that He loved His mankind and doesn’t always punish one for the sins. Instead, He gives us a chance to go back to Him. I have realized how much Allah (swt) loved me.

It all ended, when one day I found out that my husband was suffering from a life threatening disease. I was sure this was because of my misdeeds. I was struck by a shocking realization of what would happen if I lost him. My dead conscience was reprised finally. I prayed to Allah (swt), weeping bitterly and repenting for my astray thoughts.

Suddenly, things started to take a different turn and I found they were getting better. Astonishingly, the doctors told me it was a miracle that he was coming back to life. The first thought that struck me was that I was not being punished but actually Allah (swt) was showing me that He loved His mankind and doesn’t always punish one for the sins. Instead, He gives us a chance to go back to Him. I have realized how much Allah (swt) loved me. I was amazed that Allah (swt) could show me the right way without tearing my life apart. Now, I always tell my kids that when you do something wrong, don’t be scared; only feel the love for Allah (swt) and ask for quittance; He blesses, and grants us forgiveness. Stand firm with Him and He will never let you go alone in the darkness. We cannot dodge Allah (swt), because at the end of the day, ultimately we have to go back to Him. He is the absolute love of a true Muslim.

We all need to love Allah (swt), the Merciful, rather than being scared of Him. Islam is a religion which teaches that loving Allah (swt) can overwhelm your heart. Majority of us are scared of Allah (swt). That is why we aren’t true Muslims. I have come back to my real path and feel like a better Muslim: more patient and more content. My faith has become firmer and stronger. It is all because now, “I truly love Allah more than I fear Him, and His love is enough for me”.

Fiqh of Tawbah


The Prophet (sa) used to ask Allah (swt) for forgiveness more than 70 times a day. (Bukhari) Should we not be concerned about asking for forgiveness 70 times more than that?

The term ‘Tawbah’ is defined in two ways. In the linguistic sense, Tawbah is derived from the Arabic root word ‘Taba Yatutbu’, which literally means to ‘return to something’. Sinning is not a part of human beings’ natural disposition. Hence, when we sin we fall out of our Fitrah, we repent we return to our Fitrah. In the conventional sense, Tawbah is defined by Hafiz Ibn Hajar as leaving a sin due to its ugly nature, feeling remorseful over indulging in a sin, resolving to never repeat a sin and returning the rights of the people, if it was involved in a sin.

Elements of Tawbah

For repentance to be accepted, it needs the following important elements.

  1. Sincerity of Intention

We repent to Allah (swt) because we fear Him. It is not because of people or any other reason. Allah says: “…invoke Him…with the intention that you are doing your deeds for Allah’s sake only…” (Al-Araf 7:29)

  1. Feeling remorseful

The Prophet (sa) said that remorse is repentance (Ibn Majah).

  1. Resolve to stay away from sins

If this determination is lacking, it can nullify the Tawbah itself. However, if one returns to the sin, it doesn’t nullify the repentance as long as this resolve is intact. For one to stay determined on one’s Tawbah, one should keep doing good deeds, stay away from the places and sources of sins, adopt good companionship, engage in Dhikr and be prepared for death.

  1. Return the rights

Return the rights to Allah (swt) (if it’s Allah’s (swt) right that is taken away) and/or to people (if it’s people’s tangible or intangible right that is taken away).

  1. Repent before it’s too late

Tawbah is accepted only if offered before the prescribed time. This time for an individual is when one sees one’s death approach him or her. Hence, it’s the time before the soul leaves the body or reaches the throat. As we see in the example of Firaun, the time he made repentance was not accepted as he had already seen his death approach him.

Collectively, the time of Tawbah will expire when the sun will rise from the west instead of the east, which is one of the biggest sign of the Day of Judgement. (Muslim)

Virtues of Tawbah

There are many benefits to achieve by doing Tawbah. Following are some of them:

  1. Attaining love of Allah (swt)

Allah (swt) says: “…Truly, Allah loves those who turn unto Him in repentance…” (Al-Baqarah 2:222) Those who are loved by Allah (swt) will receive guidance, Allah’s protection and safety from hellfire.

  1. Success

Allah (swt) says: “…And all of you beg Allah to forgive you all, O believers, that you may be successful.” (An-Nur 24:31) This can also refer to worldly success, in terms of giving up sins, purifying our habits, etc.

  1. Acceptance of good deeds

Allah (swt) says: “And whosoever repents and does righteous good deeds, then verily, he repents towards Allah with true repentance.” (Al-Furqan 25:71)

  1. Forgiveness and Allah’s (swt) Mercy

Allah (swt) says: “But those who committed evil deeds and then repented afterwards and believed, verily, your Lord after (all) that is indeed Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” (Al-Araf 7:153) The mercy of Allah (swt) expands to such an extent that evil deeds change into good deeds for the one who does Tawbah. (Al-Furqan 25:70)

  1. Blessings in this world and hereafter

Blessings in this world may include, rain, children, spouses, rivers, gardens and wealth that is not necessarily in huge sums but will benefit more and go a long way. (Nuh 71:10-12) Likewise, the blessings of hereafter includes pardon, paradise, safety from disgrace, being with the Prophet (sa) and having our light perfected. (At-Tahrim 66:8)

  1. Receiving the supplications of the angels

Allah (swt) says: “Those (angels) who bear the Throne (of Allah) and those around it glorify the praises of their Lord, and believe in Him, and ask forgiveness for those who believe (in the Oneness of Allah) (saying): ‘Our Lord! You comprehend all things in mercy and knowledge, so forgive those who repent and follow Your Way, and save them from the torment of the blazing Fire!’” (Ghafir 40:7)

  1. Obeying the will of Allah (swt) and pleasing Him

Allah (swt) says: “Allah wishes to accept your repentance…” (An-Nisa 4:27) Allah (swt) becomes happy with the repentance of His slave such that He erases sins completely as stated by Prophet (sa) that a sinner who repents is like the one who has not committed the sin. (Ibn Majah)

Errors in making Tawbah

There are certain mistakes that people make in Tawbah, of which one needs to be careful:

  1. Not repenting at all: This is a characteristic of Shaytan; Allah (swt) commands us to not follow the footsteps of Shaytan, as indeed he is our plain enemy.
  2. Delaying Tawbah: One thinks that when they will get to a certain point in life or a specific age, then they will repent. However, we do not know when our death is written for us. What if tomorrow never comes?
  3. Not giving Tawbah its due importance: This means to be heedlessness towards Tawbah or forget to repent because it is not important for one anymore.
  4. Heedlessness of sins: One performs good deeds but is not careful about leaving sins.
  5. Fear of returning to sins: Some people think they are too weak to give up certain sins. Hence, out of fear of returning to that sin again, they do not repent. However, repentance will be the cause of increase in strength, Insha’Allah!
  6. Leaving Tawbah out of fear of what people will say: We live in a society where many of us are people pleasers. However, a Mumin or a Muslim is Allah’s (swt) pleaser first and foremost. Moreover, pleasing people is a goal that will never be achieved. If we live to please Allah (wwt), Allah and his people will be pleased with us, Insha’Allah!
  7. The argument of Qadr (predestination): We often hear people saying: “If Allah wants me to pray, he will make me start praying.” However, to understand Qadr, we need to see the two types of will. The first type is existential will that is only in Allah’s (swt) control, for example, our birth and our death. We have no control over them. The second type is legislative will, which consists of commands and prohibitions. In this, we have a choice or free will for which we will be judged upon by Allah on the Day of Judgement. Tawbah falls in the second category.
  8. Despair of Allah’s (swt) mercy: This happens because we forget that the doors to Tawbah are always open His slaves, as Allah mentions: “…Despair not of the Mercy of Allah, verily Allah forgives all sins…’” (Az-Zumar 39:53) Moreover, Allah mentions at different places in the Quran that even a hypocrite has a chance to repent (An-Nisa 4:145-146); even a disbeliever has a chance to repent (Al-Maidah 5:73-74); even an oppressor has a chance to repent (Al-Buruj 85:10).

There are various signs of an accepted Tawbah in this world and in the hereafter. In this world, the sign is that the person, who did Tawbah, is guided to do good deeds. He or she becomes a caller to Tawbah and has an ultimate good ending. Additionally, the sign of an accepted Tawbah in the hereafter is easy reckoning of deeds by Allah (swt) and attainment of paradise.

We have amongst us a prime example of the one who repented and the one who didn’t repent, along with their ultimate ends. When Adam (as) disobeyed Allah (swt) he asked for forgiveness. However, when Iblees disobeyed Allah (swt) he asked for respite and an extension of life until the end of time to lead the children of Adam (as) astray. Allah (swt) answered both requests. Hence, it is Tawbah that determines one’s ultimate end in the hereafter: paradise or hellfire!

Adapted from a workshop organized by Azan in Karachi. Summarized for Hiba Magazine by Nageen Pervez, team member, Azan.

Most Beloved People To Allah: The Tawwabeen


By Eman Al-Obaid – Al-Huda Sisters, Dubai

Tawwabeen are those who repent to Allah (swt) for their inadequacies and strive to improve themselves spiritually, eventually this improvement is reflected in their actions. It is not the same as ‘seeking forgiveness’ (Istigfaar), repentance (Tawbah) encompasses much more. Istigfar is only one of the steps in the process of repentance; it requires not only change but also action.

The root of Tawbah is t-w-b; “…suppose you are travelling somewhere and by mistake you take a wrong turn. You realize you are travelling on the wrong path. Armed with this awareness, the first thing you will do is to return to the place from where you took the wrong turn — this process is called Tawbah in Arabic…”

After the person repents from committing a major sin, he is as though he didn’t commit any sin at all. This is great encouragement – Allah has promised to accept our repentance and totally wipe out our sins. 

People are under the misconception that if they do not sin, they do not need to do Tawbah. However, Allah says in the Quran: “…Truly, Allah loves those who turn unto Him in repentance…” (Al-Baqarah 2:222). Why does Allah love those who repent? We are Allah’s salves, He does not needs us, yet He loves and appreciates us for any effort we make to follow His commands. If Allah loves a group of people, we certainly want to be among them. Imagine how life will be when Allah is happy with you! Subhan’Allah

Process of Tawbah

  1. Recognize that you have committed a major sin or transgressed against yourself. Major sins include associating partners to Allah. When a person sins his faith decreases.
  2. After committing the sin, you return to Allah. What makes a person (who committed a sin) return to Allah? Allah’s mercy; He will send some means in order to make that person remember Him. Allah doesn’t leave them astray – Allah makes them recall through signs – like books, lectures or advice from someone.
  3. When you return to Allah, you regret your sin. You feel ashamed because of Allah’s Greatness and Mercy. You feel guilt / regret / remorse when you think of your actions.
  4. Now you will feel the urge to repent with sincerity. You will hasten because you want to do it before you die. Guilt is the gate to Tawbah. It is worse if you sin but do not feel any regret or guilt – because then you will not repent.

After Tawbah your faith and Iman are strengthened and renewed. You will reinforce your belief in Allah, knowledge about Him and the Day of Judgement. When your faith and Iman are strengthened, your heart turns to Allah. Allah welcomes everyone who repents and returns to Him.

This is motivation for us – Abu Musa Al-Ash’ari (ra) reported, the  Prophet (sa) said: “Allah, the Exalted, will continue to stretch out His Hand in the night so that the sinners of the day may repent, and continue to stretch His Hand in the daytime so that the sinners of the night may repent, until the sun rises from the west (start of the Day of Judgement).” (Muslim)

Stop and quit the sin immediately, this is the journey of the توابون

Allah welcomes everyone who repents and returns to Him. 

Allah appreciates each step of this process; the more difficult the sin is to give up, the greater the reward. Determination, sincere intention and effort not to regress and commit the sin again follows repentance along with righteous deeds Replace sins with good deeds.

What happens if you commit the sin again?

Even if you commit the sin, again (by mistake) you will be considered to be among the توابون because the heart is determined not to commit the sin again. We are weak and can fall in to sinning again. If we repent again – Allah will accept the repentance, Allah is generous in His forgiveness. Only Allah knows your intentions when you recommit sins – and when you do Tawbah.

It was once said to Al-Hasan Al-Basri: “…a man commits a sin, makes Tawbah, and then commits a sin again, and he makes Tawbah again, until when? He replied: I do not see such a behaviour as being anything other than part of the good traits of character of the believers”.

After the person repents from committing a major sin, he is as though he didn’t commit any sin at all. This is great encouragement – Allah has promised to accept our repentance and totally wipe out our sins. In human relationships, if one commits a mistake – no matter how many times he apologizes –people always associate him with that particular incident, but it is different with Allah.

Hadith – “All the sons of Adam are sinners – no one is perfect but the best of people are the ones who repent.” (Ahmad and others).

But why does Allah love the Tawwabeen?

  1. They know that their Lord is the only One who can forgive them. They know only Allah can bestow forgiveness in response to repentance from beginning to end
  2. They feel gratitude that Allah is their Lord – perfect in every way.
  3. They remember Allah after committing a sin by recalling His signs; it is a sign from Allah of accepting their repentance.
  4. They realize that Allah is guiding us to repentance; Allah loves it when we repent, He makes it easy for us. Repenting to Allah is not a favour to Allah – it is a favour from Allah that He accepts our repentance.
  5. They depend on Allah’s mercy, when Allah accepts the repentance of His slave; He will make everybody forget the sin.
  6. They know Allah has total control; they are embarrassed to be among those who have witnessed their sins.

May Allah make us among those who repent. Ameen.

Catch an awe-inspiring transcription of Fiqh of Tawbah, based on a workshop conducted by Brother Kashif Nasheem Dilkusha, project head, Azan, in an upcoming issue of Hiba Magazine.

Blessed Repentance – A True Story

repentanceNayyara Rahman tells the true story of a girl who rebuilt her life

Deliverance comes in unusual ways, and to unusual people. On the surface, nobody would think of her as unfortunate. Being born to a Muslim father and a Christian mother not only exposed her to different cultures, but different lives.

When her Lebonese family moved to Australia, she fit right in. For although she was half-Muslim, the girl was quite unscrupulous about how she dressed, dined, and generally lived her life. The Quran was more of an ornament than anything else in the household, the prayer mat just another piece of tapestry.

Upon reaching adulthood, she never missed her childhood innocence. In fact, she was eager to lose it, and soon did. Purity was a distant thought, as it sometimes is when you are young and beautiful. Her list of admirers grew, especially after she became the cover girl for an illicit magazine. For someone whose sole purpose in life was to be happy, she was doing very well indeed. But, something was still gnawing at her. Soon she found out what it was.

As she was channel surfing at a friend’s house one day, an unusual program caught her eye. It was about Chastity. She felt that the words were directed towards her. After all, every day of her life consisted of the evils being talked about: immodesty, fornication, and an overwhelming lust for this world. She thought about the Fire that was so real, and shivered.

Now, she knew. The best way to understand Allah’s Mercy is to know that all you have to do is ask, and He gives. Once she had made up her mind to reform, guidance followed soon after. She left her boyfriend. The girl who never grew tired of tank tops began to see the beauty of the Hijab. Someone who prided herself on being the darling of fashion magazines began to appreciate the Quran’s Eloquence. Drugs and drink were shoved away to make room for fasting and prayer.

At last the gnawing stopped. Her days were now periods of peace – a very welcome change from the rowdy clamour she had left behind. She had never known such contentment, and she believed that life did not get any better than this. That is when fate stepped in again.

Allah has a way of testing His Faithfuls, and He tested her too. She had not been feeling well for some time. At an examination at the local hospital, she was diagnosed with a brain tumour. However, she was not afraid. After all, her life belonged to Him. He had much more of a right over it than she did.

Nevertheless, the surgery took place. The result was gloomy. She died soon after, at the tender age of twenty-two. It all happened in the course of three weeks. Her reversion to Islam up until her death.

However, her brief attempt to reconstruct her life did not go in vain. There is so much we can learn from her: For one thing, we must remember Allah helps those who work hard towards self-improvement. It is never too late to change, and no goodness, no matter how small, goes unseen by Him.

Above all, remember, that there is no such thing as a ‘long life’ for those of us who understand what it is. Should not we make the most of whatever time we do have left?