Must-See in Madinah


Was the dome of the Prophet’s (sa) Masjid always green? What did the Hujrah of Fatimah (rtam) look like? How did the Prophet’s (sa) camel react to his death? I never knew all this until I discovered Dar Al-Madinah Museum. It was an unexpectedly pleasant surprise. Not very popular, it is called Mathaf Dar Al-Madinah. The Museum is nestled in the Knowledge Economic City – Al-Marifa Hall. It lies in the outskirts of main Madinah city adjacent to the King Abdul Aziz Road.

If you wish to be dazzled by the history of Islam and live it, this is the place to be.

To read the rest of this article and more, subscribe to Hiba Magazine.

Review: Islam and the Arab Awakening


The Arab Spring began with a fruit vendor, a highly educated university graduate forced to sell fruit out of a cart on Tunisia’s streets, who burned himself in protest of unemployment and poverty in December 2010. This was the spark and soon the entire MENA (Middle East and North Africa) region was on fire.

This revolt masquerading as a revolution began in Tunisia,overthrew Mubarak in Egypt and now Morsi, led to a Libyan civil war that saw Gaddhafi killed, massacre in Syria of innocents by Bashar al Asad, demonstrations in Bahrain, and elsewhere. Tariq Ramadan expertly takes the reader on a journey from how this internet revolution was actually masterminded by the West, how they cannot completely control the direction it has taken and what could result – explore the Arab Spring, its beginning, significance and consequence in a well written, impeccably referenced and insightful manner.

Islam and the Arab Awakening consists of four chapters, an introduction and a conclusion. Ramadan tells us that as early as 2003, the West offered training to young protesters already on social media about how to start peaceful movements using this platform.

“The uprisings that swept the Arab world did not come from nowhere. As early as 2003…there had been talk of democratization in the MENA zone. It had…become…Bush’s key argument for intervention in Iraq. One year later MENA cyber-dissidents were signing up for training courses in non-violent protest. Institutions funded by American administration…organized lectures…and set up networks that would provide training…in the use of the Internet and social networks.”

We read further on that in Egypt’s case Google provided satellite codes for internet access after the government shut down the internet, however in Syria Google was not so cooperative, why? Mubarak was on his way out, the US needed a new ally, Bashar al Asad is still useful? The first chapter “Made to order uprisings?” raises many such questions. Chapter two, “Cautious optimism” analyzes how the future cannot be controlled or predicted, and how the West didn’t account for young Muslims to try and provide a self-made solution, true to Islam and their culture. They do not want an imported democracy – one a media informs us will bring the ‘Arab world’ into the 21st century. ‘Islam, Islamism, Secularization’, debates the very premise of what this new wave means. Ramadan talks about the Arabs being absorbed into a Western alter ego. Arabs reject secularism, but the Islamist parties have offered nothing viable either. Finally chapter four talks about “The Islamic reference”. Ramadan calls for Arab Muslims to draw upon “cultural capital” to produce “something new, something original”. He denounces the dictatorships that have starved progress in all fields.

“A genuine, tangible process of reform, democratization and liberation cannot take place without a broad based social movement that mobilizes civil society as well as public and private institutions. It is precisely here that the reference to Islam assumes…an immediate, imperative and constructive meaning.”

Islam has the answer, we need to overlook our differences and work together. “The Arab world had shaken itself out of its lethargy.” This line begins the conclusion; let’s see what the future holds. The promise is there, the system (Islam) is in place, all that is needed is someone to follow it.

Dying and Living for Allah (swt)

Vol 6 - Issue 3 Dying living for AllahBy Ayesha Nasir 

Written by: Khurram Murad

Pages: 80

Publisher: “The Islamic Foundation”

Available at: “Darussalam Publishers and Distributors,” Tariq Road, Karachi

In times of grief, you usually turn to a good book. But, the book we are talking about here is not just any book. It’s the last will of Khurram Murad, which is also known as “Dying and Living for Allah (swt)”. This beautifully written book has been translated by Syed Abu Ahmad Akif and deals well with the topic of death – a matter many are afraid to think about.

Khurram Murad was the Director General of the Islamic Foundation in United Kingdom from 1978 to 1986. He had also worked as a chief consulting engineer in Karachi, Dhaka, Riyadh and Tehran. In 1991, he became the editor of the monthly journal, Tarjuman-ul-Quran.

This book is none other than a ‘Nasihah’ as described by Professor Khurshid Ahmed who wrote the Foreword. Khurram Murad has left behind some good and potentially life-changing advice, not only for his family, but for the whole Ummah. As Mr. Ahmed mentions, this compilation is more than advice. It is a gift in the form of a will that deals with what Khurram Murad wishes to tell his people- the knowledge and truth he gained from his sixty-four years which were dedicated to the cause of the Islamic Movement and to fulfilling his duty of being a true servant of Allah (swt).

This publication has four major parts. The ‘Introduction’ deals with the importance of writing a will, and its significance in Islam. He addresses the will to his family at first, but mentions that he would not mind a public circulation of it.

The author also mentions some of the Duas he would recite before going to bed which are: “O Allah (swt), if You seize my soul, then be merciful to it”.

The first part of the book is called “Death and Sabr”. It deals with the pain and grief that comes with a person’s death upon the person’s relatives, friends and colleagues. Being a prominent individual in the Muslim community, Khurram Murad talks about how people should react when he departs this world. He suggests some steps to control the emotional and mental states while facing death of a near one.

He also talks about different levels of Sabr (patience), and how one pleases Allah (swt) by being patient in times of utmost despair. He points out that prayer is the only way to combat emotions of apprehension, anguish and sorrow.

The next chapter is called “Message for Successful Living”. Most of us have read motivational literature on how to make the best use of life, but none of us has ever written a concise document on the best way to live life to its maximum. That is exactly what Khurram Murad has done. This chapter features what Muslims should strive for: Allah’s (swt) pleasure, Jannah, following the Prophet’s (sa) way and so forth. Hence, the author tells us, how we should implement our desires into actions. Even though most of the points seem as the most basic of human virtues, many of us have forgotten, how exactly it feels to do good deeds wholeheartedly and solely for Allah’s (swt) pleasure.

The book ends with a personal message by Khurram Murad called “Journey to Fear and Hope”. When everything has been done, only one thing remains – looking forward to being brought before Allah (swt).

People die each day, and almost all of them forgotten. After their funerals, their wills are referred to because that is what they ‘legally’ leave behind for others. Khurram Murad left behind more than any family or any Ummah could ask for.

The main question that this book puts in front of us is, “Are you ready to face Him (swt)?”