Honoring Parents in Islam

Narrated by Abu Huraira (r) that the Prophet (S) was asked, “Messenger of Allah (S), Who is most deserving of my good company?” The Prophet said: “Your mother.!” The man asked again, “Then who?” The Prophet (S) said: “Your mother!” The man asked yet another time: “Then who?” The Prophet (S) said: “Your mother!” The man asked again: “Then who?” The Prophet (S) said: “Your father!”
عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ قَالَ‏:‏ قِيلَ‏:‏ يَا رَسُولَ اللهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم، مَنْ أَبَرُّ‏؟‏ قَالَ‏:‏ أُمَّكَ، قَالَ‏:‏ ثُمَّ مَنْ‏؟‏ قَالَ‏:‏ أُمَّكَ، قَالَ‏:‏ ثُمَّ مَنْ‏؟‏ قَالَ‏:‏ أُمَّكَ، قَالَ‏:‏ ثُمَّ مَنْ‏؟‏ قَالَ‏:‏ أَبَاكَ‏.
Source: Al Adabul Mufrad – Bukhari, Muslim
The greatest right over humanity is that of Almighty God!
Belief in Him and obedience to His rules are the first and foremost responsibilities that believers have towards Him.
After servitude to Almighty God, the greatest duty of believers is Ihsan (dutifulness, kindness and respect) to their parents.
Fulfillment of responsibilities towards parents is not just our social duty but a religious one – Fard ‘Ayn on each one of us!
While parents are naturally inclined to love their children, children often disregard the rights of their parents.
Indeed, it is impossible to estimate the depth of attachment and compassion parents feel for their children, nor is it possible to calculate the challenges and hardships they go through while bringing up their kids.
For this and many other reasons, showing Ihtiram (dutifulness, kindness, respect) to them is a debt of human gratitude as well as a religious obligation.
It is for this reason, and because of the enormous debt that an individual owes to his/her parents, that the Qur’an and Hadith have made it compulsory, indicating with clear guidelines as how to provide Ihsan to both parents.
Almighty God says in the Qur’an: “And your Lord has decreed that you worship none but Him, and that you show kindness to parents. And if one of them or both of them attain old age with you, say not to them a word of disrespect, nor shout at them but address them in terms of honor.
وَقَضَى رَبُّكَ أَلاَّ تَعْبُدُواْ إِلاَّ إِيَّاهُ وَبِالْوَالِدَيْنِ إِحْسَانًا إِمَّا يَبْلُغَنَّ عِندَكَ الْكِبَرَ أَحَدُهُمَا أَوْ كِلاَهُمَا فَلاَ تَقُل لَّهُمَآ أُفٍّ وَلاَ تَنْهَرْهُمَا وَقُل لَّهُمَا قَوْلاً كَرِيمًا
And lower unto them the wing of submission through mercy and say: My Lord! Bestow on them Your Mercy as they did bring me up when I was small.”
وَاخْفِضْ لَهُمَا جَنَاحَ الذُّلِّ مِنَ الرَّحْمَةِ وَقُل رَّبِّ ارْحَمْهُمَا كَمَا رَبَّيَانِي صَغِيرًا
(Al Isra’ 23, 24)
This term ‘Ihsan’ has been used in this verse of the Qur’an as a special term to describe our relationship with our parents.
In Arabic language, Ihsan means a state of a relationship in which a person is pleased even when he/she receives less than his/her due right is or offers more than what his/her duties call for.
It is clear from this definition that the Qur’an does not merely ask us to treat our parents on the basic of equality and justice.
It commands us, rather, that we show respect, kindness and love to them at all times and forever!
They have special rights and we are obliged to fulfill them!
The rights of parents are from the category of greatest rights – ‘a’zami huquq’.
One of the main distinguishing characteristics of the true Muslim is upholding parents’ rights and his/her respectful and kind treatment of the parents, because to treat them with respect and kindness is one of the greatest commandments of Islam, as explained in both primary sources of Islam – Qur’an and Sunnah.
The recognition and respect of parents is mentioned in the Qur’an eleven times and in every instance where God reminds children to recognize, to appreciate and to be grateful for the love and care they have received from their parents. (Ankabut 8)
If we fail to do as God ordered us, we will find ourselves in the category of those known as “walad al ‘Aq” or a disobedient child.
Disobedience towards parents is linked with disobedience to God just as treating them with kindness and respect is connected to belief in Almighty God.
Disobedience towards one’s parents is a great transgression that the true Muslims fear to commit, because it will demolish their reward in this world and is, in fact, viewed as one of the worst sins that will be punished even in this world.
It was reported that Muhammad (S) asked the Sahabah three times: “Shall I tell you the greatest sins?’ We said, ‘Yes, O Messenger of God.’ He said: ‘Associating partners with God and disobeying one’s parents.’’ (Bukhari, Muslim)
In another hadith, we find that the Messenger of God, Muhammad (S) warned us in following words as narrated by Nafi’ ibn al-Harith (r) that the Prophet (S) said, “Every consequence of sin is delayed by Allah, as He wills, until the Day of Resurrection, except for injustice, disobedience to parents, or severing family ties. He will hasten the punishment of those who commit them in this world before he/she dies.” (Al-Adab al-Mufrad)
عَنْ نفيع بن الحارث عَنِ النَّبِيِّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ قَالَ كُلُّ ذُنُوبٍ يُؤَخِّرُ اللَّهُ مِنْهَا مَا شَاءَ إِلَى يَوْمِ الْقِيَامَةِ إِلا الْبَغْيَ وَعُقُوقَ الْوَالِدَيْنِ أَوْ قَطِيعَةَ الرَّحِمِ يُعَجِّلُ لِصَاحِبِهَا فِي الدُّنْيَا قَبْلَ الْمَوْت
As we can understand from the verse 23 of Surah Al Isra’, God has asked human beings to recognize their parents after recognizing Almighty God, Himself.
Yes, we must recognize both of them; however, Islam stresses a special place that mothers have in children’s lives and thus children must realize that the Prophet (S) declared that our mothers are the most deserving of our good company, even before our fathers.
Abu Huraira (r) narrated that a man asked the Prophet (S) “Who is most deserving of my good company?” The Prophet said: “Your mother.!” The man asked again, “The who?” The Prophet (S) said: “Your mother!” The man asked yet another time: “Then who?” The Prophet (S) said: “Your mother!” The man asked again: “Then who?” The Prophet (S) said: “Your father!” (Bukhari, Muslim)
Ya Rabb! We beg of You to guide us to be dutiful to our parents, show them kindness, respect and be grateful for all they have done for us when we were little babies!
We ask of You, Ya Rabb! To guide us never to be among those known as disobedient children!
Allahumma Amin!


Fleeing to Allah in Times of Calamities and Trials

Fleeing to Allah in Times of Calamities and Trials

Narrated by Thabit (r) that he heard from Anas (r) that the Prophet (S) said: “The real patience is at the first stroke of a calamity.”
عَنْ ثَابِتٍ، قَالَ سَمِعْتُ أَنَسًا ـ رضى الله عنه ـ عَنِ النَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ ‏ “‏ الصَّبْرُ عِنْدَ الصَّدْمَةِ الأُولَ
Source: Bukhari
Transliteration: “As Sabru ‘Indas Sadmatil Ula.”
Our lives are often interrupted with situations, challenges, afflictions, trials and calamities.
Some of these happenings are natural and some are caused by human beings.
We lived normal lives and all of a sudden, this COVID-19 happens!
We traveled, spent time with friends and now we must plan differently due to the COVID-19 restrictions.
Some of these challenges are personal, some are related to the families, health, jobs while others are related to racism and diverse types of discrimination (like islamophobia) as well as safety and security nationally or internationally due to conflicts, aggressions and wars.
Yes, things do happen and in the midst of these happenings, we often do not see the light, the way out and loose hope!
And when we are in a such state, anxiety assails, pessimism visits us, despair and depression creep into our lives.
And that should not be the case!
Things do happen in live and we need to do all possible preventative measures that they do not happen, but still, if they happen, we must learn how to deal with them.
Whom to learn from how to deal with challenges, if not from the best of the teachers, the Chosen one (Mustafa), Muhammad (S), our role-model!
How did Muhammad (S) respond to trials and calamities?
What did he do in those challenging moments?
First of all, Muhammad (S) understood that challenges and calamities are inevitable tests in life, and we should understand the same way this reality.
“Do people think that they will be left alone because they say: “We believe” and not be tested?” (Ankabut 29:2)
أَحَسِبَ النَّاسُ أَن يُتْرَكُوا أَن يَقُولُوا آمَنَّا وَهُمْ لَا يُفْتَنُونَ
Secondly, when afflicted with challenges, he was not distracted but got more composed and the khair (good) visited him.
It was narrated by Suhaib (r) that Allah’s Messenger (S) said: “Strange are the ways of a believer for there is good in every affair of his/her and this is not the case with anyone else except in the case of a believer for if he/she has an occasion to feel delight, he/she thanks (God), thus there is a good for him/her in it, and if he/she gets into trouble and shows resignation (and endures it patiently), there is a good for him/her in it (again).” (Muslim)
عَنْ صُهَيْبٍ، قَالَ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم ‏ “‏ عَجَبًا لأَمْرِ الْمُؤْمِنِ إِنَّ أَمْرَهُ كُلَّهُ خَيْرٌ وَلَيْسَ ذَاكَ لأَحَدٍ إِلاَّ لِلْمُؤْمِنِ إِنْ أَصَابَتْهُ سَرَّاءُ شَكَرَ فَكَانَ خَيْرًا لَهُ وَإِنْ أَصَابَتْهُ ضَرَّاءُ صَبَرَ فَكَانَ خَيْرًا لَهُ
Thirdly, Muhammad (S) was an optimist who thought of Allah only the best and expected of Him only the best because he understood Allah’s words clearly, as we should: “I am as my servants think of Me.” (Hadith Qudsi – Bukhari, Muslim, Tirmizi, Ibn Majah)
عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ رَضِيَ اللَّهُ عَنْهُ قَالَ: قَالَ النَّبِيُّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ يَقُولُ اللَّهُ تَعَالَى: أَنَا عِنْدَ ظَنِّ عَبْدِي بِي
Fourthly, God Almighty taught Muhammad (S) that after the challenge, ease will come and to expect the reward for being Sabir (patient) when facing challenges in life, as God Almighty tells in the Qur’an:
“For indeed, with hardship [will be] ease. Indeed, with hardship [will be] ease.” (Ash Sharh 91:5-6)
فَإِنَّ مَعَ الْعُسْرِ يُسْرًا
إِنَّ مَعَ الْعُسْرِ يُسْرًا
“And We will most certainly try (test) you with fear and hunger and loss of property and lives and fruits. And give glad tidings to the patient.” (Al Baqarah 2:155)
وَلَنَبْلُوَنَّكُمْ بِشَيْءٍ مِّنَ الْخَوفْ وَالْجُوعِ وَنَقْصٍ مِّنَ الأَمَوَالِ وَالأنفُسِ وَالثَّمَرَاتِ وَبَشِّرِ الصَّابِرِينَ
Lastly, when the calamities assailed into his life, Muhammad (S) will flee to his Creator, as in the case of the abuse in Taif: “To You, o my Lord, I complain of my weakness!
اَللّٰھُمَّ إِلَیْکَ أَشْکُوْا ضَعْفَ قُوَّتِیْ
Ya Arhamar Rahimin (O, the most Merciful One)!
You are the Lord of the weak; You are my Lord!
To whom do you leave me?
To a distant person who receives me with hostility?
Or to the enemy You have given power over me?
And as long as You are not displeased with me, I do not mind what I face!
I would, however, be much happier with Your mercy!
Allah responds and aids Muhammad (S) with angels who ask Muhammad (S) to bring the two mountains (whose pebbles Taif people used to stone Muhammad (S)) to punish them but the Rasul (S) said: No! Rather, I pray that Allah blesses their children to be Muslims and worship Allah alone (Ar Rahiq Al Makhtum)
Ya Rabb! Guide us to understand that life is full of challenges that we need to face soberly as Muhammad (S) did by fleeing to the Creator in those difficult moments and seeing His protection – the protection of the Waliyy, Who is the Most Merciful and Compassionate!
Allahumma Amin!


Balance in Raising our Children

The Balance in Raising Our Children

by Imam Zijad

Narrated Abu Huraira (r) that al-Aqra’ b. Habis saw Allah’s Apostle (S) kissing Hasan. He said: “I have ten children, but I have never kissed any one of them, whereupon Allah’s Messenger (S) said: He who does not show mercy (towards his children), no mercy would be shown to him.”

عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ، أَنَّ الأَقْرَعَ بْنَ حَابِسٍ، أَبْصَرَ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم يُقَبِّلُ الْحَسَنَ فَقَالَ إِنَّ لِي عَشَرَةً مِنَ الْوَلَدِ مَا قَبَّلْتُ وَاحِدًا مِنْهُمْ فَقَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم إِنَّهُ مَنْ لاَ يَرْحَمْ لاَ يُرْحَمْ

Source: Muslim

Transliteration: “Innahu Man La Yarham, La Yurham.”

Muslim parents should work on building children’s self-esteem and never give a chance to tear it down.

Helping children develop healthy self-esteem is one of the most important things that parents can do for them here and now.

Children need to be assured by their parents’ attitude of care, love and mercy, not just words, that they are a special gift from God.

This attitude of parents towards children would give them sense of value, purpose, and direction in their young life.

If parents do not achieve this goal but focus on weakening or tearing their children’s self-esteem, that could leave long term consequences in their lives of their own children.

There are several ways how parents tear down children’s self-worth and self-esteem:

  1. Perfectionism: Many parents see one ‘B’ among all ‘A’s’ which their children get at the end of a term.

Such perfectionist parents will tear down their children’s self-esteem by never being satisfied with their accomplishments.

Yes, it is good to fine tune of the children’s actions and it is desirable when parents are sure that the child’s self-esteem can handle it.

However, it is important that children’s effort be applauded.

  1. Overprotection: Parents should remember that bruised knees will heal, but low self-esteem can last for a lifetime.
  2. Humiliation: There are many parents who, by their way of dealing with their children and the way they talk to them, think that they are motivating and correcting their children, but instead, they are really humiliating them.

Humiliation is a common way to rob and destroy a child of self-esteem.

This applies to everyone, especially when we are dealing with our children.

Almighty Allah says in the Qur’an: “O you who believe! Do not humiliate one another by calling each other offensive names.” (Al Hujurat 11)

All parents are having different parental styles based on their personality type, background, and experiences.

Experts say that there are several styles of parenting that strengthen or weaken the child’s self-esteem, and these are: permissive, free-reigning, authoritarian, controlling and nurturing and limits setting.

Most parents fall somewhere between permissive and controlling styles.

Permissive and free-reigning parents often have trouble setting limits.

Authoritarian parents often fail to listen what children have to say or show respect for their ideas or opinions.

Controlling parents nurture and set limits for their children, but frequently go overboard in supervising and micromanaging them.

The most balance style of parenting is the one that falls between nurturing and setting limits.

Islam promotes moderation in every aspect of life, as pointed in the last three posts, including parenting, as Almighty Allah says in the Qur’an: “And thus We have made you an Ummah of moderation (justly balanced).”(Al Baqarah 143)

On this basis, the ideal parents are those who achieve the right balance between nurturing and limit setting.

They are firm in setting limits, yet they allow children freedom within those limits.

They make very positive comments and are reasonable in discipline.

They are principled, firm yet kind, merciful and generous.

The reason is obvious: they care about their children and thus want to ensure that the children attain full potential on the path of their development and growth.

If it happens that children sometimes face challenges on that path, children will know that their parents’ support is inevitable and available at any point in time they need it.

Ya Rabb! Guide us parents to nurture our children and set limits in their lives so that our lives and their lives be filled with progress, success, cooperation and mutual celebrations!

Allahumma Amin!


Commitment in Din: Meaning and Importance

Narrated by Shahr bin Haushab who said, I asked Umm Salamah (r. ‘anha), “O Mother of the Believers! Which supplication did the Messenger of Allah (S) make frequently when he was in your house?” She said: “He (S) supplicated frequently: “O Controller of the hearts make my heart steadfast in Your religion).”
وعن شهر بن حوشب قال‏:‏ قلت لأم سلمة، رضي الله عنها، يا أم المؤمنين ما كان أكثر دعاء رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم، إذا كان عندك‏؟‏ قالت‏:‏ كان أكثر دعائه‏:‏ ‏ “‏يا مقلب القلوب ثبت قلبي على دينك‏”‏ ‏(‏‏(‏رواه الترمذي، وقال‏:‏ حديث حسن‏)‏‏)‏‏.‏
Source: Tirmizi
Transliteration: ‘Ya Muqallibal Qulubi, Thabbit Qalbi ‘ala Dinik.”
In another words, the Prophet (S) used to supplicate often that Allah keeps him committed to the principles of Islam,
For us here in Canada, another Eid this year is over, but as believers, we cannot take a rest or a vocation from our faith!
We know that upon saying the Shahadah and becoming Muslims, we make the covenant with Almighty Allah, the Creator.
At this point of time, we promise a commitment which is the essential foundation of any Islamic activity, especially in Canadian Muslim community (ies).
These committed individuals are named by Allah as ‘The Just and Balanced Nation – Ummatan Wasata.’
They individually and collectively stand in the world as witnesses to humanity: “Thus We have made you a Just and Balanced Nation, that you be witnesses over mankind and the Messenger of Allah witness over you.” (Al Baqarah 143)
Being called ‘Ummatan Wasata’, having this status is a great honor but a great responsibility as well.
Meeting the obligation to be called Ummatan Wasata and playing the role of the Just and Balanced Community are the goals set for the believing community in Canada.
To achieve these goals, members of the believing community must commit themselves to the covenant made with Allah.
What do we mean by the term “commitment”?
According to the lexicon, the term “commitment” means the state of being pledged, obliged to something.
What is then the Islamic commitment?
It means to increase the sense, the feeling, the consciousness of being pledged and obliged to Almighty Allah and the Messenger of Allah, Muhammad (S) and the betterment of others and environment we live in.
It is the sense of responsibility towards ourselves, others and environment.
In short, commitment means to make more serious and concrete pledge to work and sacrifice for the cause of Allah by making ourselves accountable to Him and making shore that others benefit from us for His sake.
Allah informs us about the Right Direction and the commitment to it in the following words: “Say: Verily, my prayer, my sacrifice, my living, and my dying are for Allah, the Lord of the ‘Alamin.” (Al An’am 162)
The best example of the commitment is found in the lives of Prophets, the Sirah of the Messenger of Allah, Muhammad (S) and the life of Sahabah.
Those who read it, first what strikes them is the high level of commitment of the members of the early Muslim community to the cause of good in the name of Allah.
1. Look at the commitment of Bilal (r) who was tortured under the Arabian sun. (We are not asked to sacrifice so much!) Look at the faith which he had. Look at the words: Ahad, Ahad, Ahad (only One God). Look at the power of his sincere Iman. Look at his struggle for social justice! Look at his readiness to sacrifice that others could have freedom.
2. Look at the commitment of Abu Bakr! He leaves his property, good social status among the Quraysh and follows the Din of Islam. He gives ALL for the pleasure of Allah and betterment of people/community.
3. Look at the personality of the Messenger of Allah, Muhammad (S), his Iman, and his energy. He refuses all the gifts, power of Duniya by choosing the Din of Allah: ‘If you would give me the sun in my right hand and the moon in my left hand I would never stop the mission ordered by Allah.’
4. Look at the lives of Ibrahim, his son Ismail and the Mother Hajar and you will find amazing examples of self-sacrifice and commitment for the sake of Allah.
Ya Rabb! Help us make our hearts committed to the Din, follow the path of commitment of the great giants and role-models from our past and make us of those who would commit ourselves to the principles of righteousness that the Almighty is pleased with.
Allahumma Amin!


Etiquettes and Sunnahs of Eid ul Adha Prayer

Narrated by Ibn ‘Abbas (r) that “The Messenger of Allah (S) would wear a red-striped cloak on the day of Eid.” عَنِ ابْنِ عَبَّاسٍ قَالَ كَانَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ يَلْبَسُ يَوْمَ الْعِيدِ بُرْدَةً حَمْرَاءَ Source: al-Mu’jam al-Awsaṭ 7808 Transliteration: “Kana Rasulullahi (S) Yalbisu Yawmal ‘Eidi Burdatan Hamra.”

Islam values manners and etiquettes in everything we do! Eid ul Adha has some important etiquettes to be observed by Muslims. Here are some etiquettes and Sunnahs with which Eids should be celebrated (of course, during the time of COVID 19, some of the extra rules must be adapted and followed issued by the Canada’s health experts as well as the SNMC team. Please visit SNMC platforms for these):

1. It is recommended to take a bath on the morning of Eid. Imam Ibn Qudamah said that it is recommended to perform Ghusl for Eid. Ibn Omar would perform Ghusl on the day of Eid and Ali is reported to have done so as well. Al- Nawawi said that the Muslims were unanimously agreed that it is mustahab to do ghusl for Eid prayer. The reason why it is mustahab is the same reason as that for doing ghusl before Jumu’ah and other public gatherings. Rather on Eid the reason is even stronger. This is opinion of the other great scholars.

2. It is recommended to dress well for Eids for it is the Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah (S) who used to dress well for Eid prayers. (Ibn Khuzaymah) Ibn Al Qayyum said that the Messenger of Allah would wear his best clothes to go to the Eid prayer. He had a cloak that he wore specifically on the two Eids and Fridays. (Zadul Ma’ad)

3. It is mustahab on Eid ul Adha not to eat anything until one comes back from the prayer, so he/she should eat from the Udhiyah if he/she has offered a sacrifice.

4. It is recommended to use different routes for going to and coming from Eid prayers. Jabir bin Abdullah reported that the Messenger of Allah (S) used two different routes for Eid, one for going to Eid prayer and another for coming back from Eid prayer. (Bukhari) Ibn Qayyim said that Muhammad (S) would take different routes on the day of the Eid, going one way and returning another one. It has been said that the wisdom for this is to greet the people of both routes; so that the people of both routes will receive blessings from him (through his supplication and salams); to fulfill the needs of the needy people on both routes, etc.’ (Zadul Ma’ad)

5. It is recommended for ladies to participate in the Eid prayers. (Bukhari, Muslim)

6. Takbir (saying Allahu Akbar) is a clearly distinctive feature of Muslims’ Eid celebrations. This is one of the greatest Sunnahs on the day of Eid because Allah says: “(He wants that you) must complete the same number (of days), and that you must magnify Allah [i.e. to say Takbir (Allahu Akbar: Allah is the Most Great)] for having guided you so that you may be grateful to Him” (Al Baqarah 2:185) On Eid ul Adha, Takbir starts from Magrib on the 9th Zul Hijjah and last until the ‘Asr prayer on the 13th Zul Hijjah. One of the recommended Takbirs is as follows: “Allahu Akbar Allahu Akbar (Allahu Akbar), La Ilaha Illallahu Wallahu Akbar Allahu Akbar Wa lillahil Hamd. (Tirmizi) On the day of Eid, the takbir starts from the time that one leaves the house heading towards the Mosque/Musalla. It is confirmed that the Messenger of Allah (S) ‘Would leave (his house), on the day of Eid, saying Takbir until he reached the Musalla, and until he performed the prayer. Once he had performed the prayer, he would stop saying the Takbir.’ (Ibn Abi Shayban) Saying Takbir when coming out of one’s house to the prayer place and until the imam comes out was something that was well known tradition among the salaf (early generations). This has been narrated by a number of scholars such as Ibn Abi Shaybah, ‘Abd a l-Razzaq and al-Firyabi in Ahkam al-Eidayn

7. After Fajr prayer, the Eid prayer should be the first thing to start the day of Eid with as it was done by the Messenger of Allah, Muhammad (S).

8. It is very important for the Muslims to congratulate one another for the Eid by saying: Taqabbalallahu Minna wa Minkum – my Allah accept from us and you, Eid Mubarak or any other good expression that is allowed in Shari’ah. Jubay ibn Nufair reported that when the Messenger of Allah, Muhammad (S) and the companions met on the Eid day, they used to say: May Allah accept our good deeds. (Ibn Hajar says that the hadith is sound) During the time of COVID-19, we must follow the rules of social distancing and thus avoid shaking hands and hugging.

Ya Rabb! Make us of those who would follow these beautiful Sunnahs so that we attain the maximum benefits of the Eid ul Adha days. Allahumma Amin!

Imam Zijad

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Imam Zijad’s Corner: An Attitude of Gratitude (Shukr)

Imam Zijad’s Corner: An Attitude of Gratitude (Shukr)Narrated by `A’isha (r) that when the Prophet (S) prayed (the night prayers: Qiyam-ul-layl), he would stand until (the skin of) his feet swelled. So, she asked him: “O Prophet of Allah, you do all of this while knowing that Allah has forgiven you all of your mistakes?”

He responded: “Should I not aspire to be a grateful servant of Allah?”

Source: Muslim

Transliteration: “Afala Akunu ‘Abdan Shukura?”

Imam ibn Hajar commented on the hadith by saying that Muhammad (S) clarified to ‘Aisha (r), and thus to all of us, that the path of worship is not the path of challenges and difficulties but the way in which we develop an opportunity to express our gratitude to the Creator for all we enjoy and for the doors of forgiveness He provided us with.

Muslim classical and modern scholars taught us that gratitude is not only the part of our faith but it is the key by which to attract abundance, blessings, prosperity, peace, tranquility and success.

One of the most important aspects of tarbiyah (education) in Islam is the cultivation of the attitude of gratitude in people’s lives.

Why gratitude is presented to be much important and beneficial in Islam?

In the context of our current situation with coronavirus pandemic, we certainly could benefit from this attitude in all aspects of our life.

Below are some practical examples of benefits of gratitude:
Gratitude trains our minds to focus on the right things in life.

When we let our minds look for problems, we see plenty of them.

Instead, if we rather look away from problems and focus on possibilities and go for solutions, we will get those too.

Let’s, therefore, use gratitude to motivate ourselves to find possibilities and search for solutions and not only the negatives associated with challenges we face in life.

Gratitude helps us to slow down on the life-highways and enjoy what we have, rather than always waiting for the next wish to come true.

Gratitude can help us recognize that we already have enough of what many people have, for long, been yearning for.

We must therefore tame our Nafs (souls) to understand that if we can’t find happiness in the blessings that we have today, then we won’t be happy with what we get tomorrow.

Thus, gratitude is a sense of fulfillment that comes not from wanting more but rather from a sense of knowing that Allah has already blessed us with what we need.

Gratitude helps us recognize other people’s favors to us.

The Prophet (S) through his sayings made it quite clear that expressing our gratitude to Allah by thanking Him also involves that we thank people who do favors for us.

The Prophet Muhammad (S) said as narrated by Abu Hurairah (r): “He who does not thank people, does not thank Allah” (Ahmad, Tirmidhi).

He also taught us how to do it: “Whoever does you a favor, then reciprocate, and if you cannot find anything with which to reciprocate, then pray for him/her until you think that you have reciprocated him/her.” (Abu Dawud)

In another hadith, he said: “Whoever has a favor done for him/her and says to the one who did it,‘Jazak Allahu khayran,’ has done enough to thank him/her.” (Tirmizi)

Gratitude isn’t about ignoring our problems.

On the contrary, gratitude helps us to be patient, accepting of life’s challenges, and accordingly trains us to seek personal fulfillment with less.

Gratitude thus makes us “low maintenance” in our demands and expectations.

This trait reduces our burden on those around us, making our company more pleasing to others instead of leaving us always unhappy, more demanding, and impossible to please because of unending demands and expectations.

Gratitude helps increase one’s blessings, as Allah says: “And (remember) when your Lord proclaimed: ‘If you are grateful, I will give you more (of My Blessings).” (Ibrahim 14:7)

Gratitude is not only expressing our thanks with words.

Gratitude goes beyond mere words.

It emerges in the heart and translates itself in our actions.

We see this in the example of the Prophet (S) whose sins were forgiven by Allah, yet, he continued to strive for His pleasure, as in the hadith above.

It is not only about saying shukr but acting shukr!

This acting part of shukr has been also presented in the example of the Prophet Dawud’s (may peace and blessings be upon him) family.

Allah says: “Work, of family of Dawud, in gratitude.” (Saba’ 34:13)

Allah did not tell Dawud “Be grateful” but told him “work in gratitude.”

May Allah help us be grateful to our own families and all those who have done any good to us, be it something huge or small and does not matter if it comes from an individual, group, association or the state. Allahumma Amin!


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Live-Streaming Discussion / Short Talks

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Tuesday, April 21st at 7:00 pm – “An Attitude of Gratitude (Shukr) and Ramadan.”

Thursday, April 23rd at 1:00 pm – Topic: “Welcoming the Month of Ramadan: The Prophet’s (S) Khutbah.”

Friday, April 24th at 1:00 pm – Today’s Friday Message: Ramadan: The Time to Come Clean with Allah.” – Please listen to the Message and then pray 4 Units (Rakat) of Salatiz Zuhr

Saturday, April 25th at 1:00 pm – Topic: “Manners of Welcoming the Month of Ramadan & Siyam.”

Sunday, April 26th at 1:00 pm – Topic: “Importance and Manners of Suhur and Iftar.”

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Live-Streaming Discussion/Short Talks

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Sunday, April 11th at 7:00 pm – Topic: “ Preparation for the Month of Ramadan: 5 Ways to Prepare for Ramadan.”
Tuesday, April 13th at 7:00 pm – Topic: “ Preparation for the Month of Ramadan: 5 Goals to Prepare for Ramadan.”
Thursday, April 15th at 7:00 pm – Topic: “ Taqwa: The Purpose of Sawm (Fasting) ”
Saturday, April 17th at 7:00 pm Topic: ” Benefits of Taqwa in the Light of the Qur’an.”

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Imam Zijad’s Corner: Modesty is Part of Faith

Imam Zijad’s Corner:  Modesty is Part of Faith

Narrated by Zaid ibn Talha رضي الله عنه that Muhammad ﷺ said: “Indeed, every religion has fine, innate and praiseworthy character, and the character of Islam is Al Haya’ (modesty or bashfulness).”
Source: Malik
Transliteration: “Inna Likulli Dinin Khuluqun; wa Khuluqul Islami Al Haya.”
This Hadith means that among all the religions, which existed before Islam, each one had one prominent characteristic or another except Al Haya’.
In other words, among all the moral values the position that Al Haya’ occupies in Islam is the most dominant and sublime and this was not the case in the earlier religions so much as it is in Islam.
 If it was like stars in the other religions, it shines forth like the sun in Islam.
 For these reasons, the attention of Muslims is invited to this prominent position and importance of Al Haya’.
 While Muslims should adopt all good moral values, they are asked specifically to give a distinct position to Al Haya’.
Al Haya’ rests at the top of the list in good manners of exceptional believers.
Al Haya’ means modesty, bashfulness, shyness, deservedness, etc.
It is a much-praised habit for it prevents its owner from doing something that is wrong.
It also brings only good to its owner, as our Prophet, Muhammad said: “Al Haya’ does not bring anything except good.” (Bukhari, Muslim)
Once the Prophet was passing by a man who was blaming someone for his bashfulness. The Messenger told him to leave the person adding: “Al Haya is a part of Faith, and Faith leads into Jannah and Al Bitha’ {indecency-shamelessness) is a part of corruption or disgust (Al Jafa’) and corruption leads to Jahannam.” (Ibn Majah, Ahmad, Tirmithi)
As it can be seen from the Hadith, the Haya’ is related with character (Akhlaq) and it helps in bringing up moral people with virtuous behavior which will lead them to Jannah.
Ibn Al Qayyim, may God be pleased with him, said that Al Haya’ is a part of life, and depending on how much Al Haya’ heart possesses, actually reflects how much moral character an individual has.
The smaller amount of Al Haya’ the individual shows, the greater deficiency of spiritual life and ineffectiveness his/her ability and competence reflects.
The Prophet, Muhammad said: “The Faith consists of more than sixty branches, and Al Haya is a part of Faith.” (Sahih Al-Bukhari)
Al Haya’ may be practiced between a servant and his/her Rabb (Lord), when a servant shows bashfulness (Al Haya’) before the Lord, especially in committing disobedience be it openly or secretly.
Allah (SWT) the Almighty informs us: “Allah knows the fraud of the eyes, and all that the breasts conceal.” (Al Gafir 19)
The shyness between Allah and His servants is the shyness of honor, because Almighty God is shy to refuse His servant when he/she raises his/her hands in supplication (Du’a).
As for shyness between the individual and other people, it is that which prevents him/her from committing a wrong, and thus hates people witnessing his/her feeling of humiliation and guilt.
He/she who is shy of God, avoids what is forbidden in all situations: in the presence of people as well as in their absence.
This Al Haya’ is the shyness of worship, and it can only be acquired by knowing God, His nearness to His servants, and His knowledge of what is open and being kept hidden and secret.
This form of Al Haya’ is the highest form of Al Ihsan. It is very clearly explained in the Hadith: “Al Ihsan is to worship God as though you are seeing Him, and while you do not see Him, yet truly He sees you.” (Sahih Muslim)


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Saturday, April 4th at 7:00 pm – Topic: “Tawakkul (Reliance) on Allah: Benefits in Times of Calamities.”
Monday, April 6th at 7:00 pm – Topic: “Preparing for the Month of Ramadan – Blessings of Ramadan.”
Wednesday, April 8th at 7:00 pm – Topic: “Being an Extra-Nice Neighbour in Times of Calamities.”
Friday, April 10th at 1:00 pm – Today’s Friday Message – Please listen to the Message and then pray 4 Units (Rakat) of Salatiz Zuhr
Friday, April 10th at 7:00 pm – Topic: “Preparing for the Month of Ramadan – 5 Reasons to Prepare for Ramadan.”
Sunday, April 12th at 7:00 pm – Topic: “Preparing for the Month of Ramadan – 5 Ways to Prepare for Ramadan.”
Tuesday, April 14th at 7:00 pm – Topic: “Preparing for the Month of Ramadan – 5 Goals to Prepare for Ramadan.”
Thursday, April 16th at 7:00 pm – Topic: “Taqwa (Mindfulness of Allah) – the Purpose of Fasting.”