Time is a Precious Commodity
نِعْمَتَانِ مَغبونٌ فيهما كَثيرٌ مِنَ النَّاسِ الصِّحَّةُ ، وَالفَرَاغُ
The two most undervalued assets by people are good health and leisure time.
—The Prophet Muḥammad (peace and blessings be upon him)
[Bukhārī 5933, Tirmidhī 2226, Ibn Mājah 4160, Aḥmad 2224, 3038, Dārimī 2591, Riyad al-Saliheen #97]
The Fault is in Us, Not in Time
نَعِيبُ زَمَانَنَا وَ العَيبُ فِينَا
وَ مَا لِزَمَانِنَا عَيبٌ سِوَانَا
“We blame time and the fault is in us,
There is no fault in time except us.”
— Imām al-Shāfi‘ī RH [d. 204H/820CE]
(Read on pg 39, Dr. Gohar Mushtaq, The Intelligent Heart, The Pure Heart. Ta-Ha Publishers. London: 2006.)
“Losing time is worse than death, as losing time keeps you away from Allah and the Hereafter, while death keeps you away from the worldly life and people.”
Today is All You Have
إن بلاءنا أننا نعجز عن حاضرنا و نشتغل بماضينا ، نهمل قصورنا الجميلة ، و نندب الأطلال البالية . . . الريح تتجه إلى الأمام ، و الماء ينحدر إلى الأمام ، و القافلة تسير إلى الأمام ، فلا تخالف سنة الحياة
Our tragedy is that we are incapable of dealing with the present. Neglecting our beautiful castles, we wail over dilapidated buildings. Everything on earth marches forward, preparing for a new season—and so should you.
Beware of Three
Beware of Allah’s anger with regards to three:
- Beware that you fall into shortcomings concerning what He has commanded you.
- Beware that He sees you while you are feeling discontent concerning the provision He has granted you.
- Beware of feeling dismay at your Lord if you seek a provision of this life, but cannot acquire it.
—’Sufyān al-Thawrī RH [161H/778CE]
(Read on pg 24, Abdul-Malik bin Muhammad ibn Abdul Rahman Al-Qasim, Life is a Fading Shadow. Darussalam Publishers. Riyadh:1999.)
Remedy for the Heart
There are two main things you have to do. The first is to move your heart from dwelling on the things of this world and move it to dwell on the Hereafter, then focus all your heart on the Qur’an and ponder its meanings and why it was revealed. Try to understand something from every aayah and apply it to the disease of your heart. These aayaat were revealed (to treat) the disease of the heart, so you will be healed, by the permission of Allah.
—Ibn al-Qayyim RH [d. 751H/1350CE] on curing one’s heart
(Read on pg 57, Shaikh Muhammad Salih al-Munajjid, Weakness of Iman. Dar us-Sunnah Publisher. Birmingham:2003.)
Satan’s 3 Wishes
Iblis (satan) said, “If I win three things from the son of Adam, I will have earned what I wanted from him: if he forgets his sins, thinks high of his actions, and becomes fond of his opinion.”
—Dirar b. Murrah RH
Sifatus-Safwah vol. 3, p. 116
(Read on pg 39, Abdul-Malik bin Muhammad ibn Abdul Rahman Al-Qasim, Life is a Fading Shadow. Darussalam Publishers. Riyadh:1999.)
Its not the land that make anyone Holy . . .
The Companion Abu’l-Dardā’ RA who was living in the land of al-Shām (present day Syria/Palestine) once invited his colleague Salmān al-Farsī RA to come and live with him in the Holy Land. Salmān RA wrote back to him:
إِنَّ الأَرْضَ لا تُقَدِّسُ أَحَدًا ، وَإِنَّمَا يُقَدِّسُ الإِنْسَانَ عَمَلُهُ
It is not the land that makes anyone holy, but one’s deeds.
—Salmān al-Farsī RA [d. 35/644]
You Are Everything Today but MUSLIM!
Lament that in the world, Muslims are descending
We say this in reply that you are condescending
With alien ways and culture you are not transcending
Are you Muslim still, what message are you sending
You are Syed, you are Mirza, Afghan in origin
Everything you are, but ARE YOU MUSLIM in religion?
—The timeless poet Muḥammad Iqbāl RH [d 1357/1938]
أفضل الأعمال ما أكرهت عليه النفوس
Imam Abu Bakr ibn Abid Dunya (rahimahullah) has recorded this as the statement of ‘Umar ibn ‘Abdil ‘Aziz (rahimahullah). (Muhasabatun Nafs, Hadith: 113)
“The best actions are those which the nafs is forced to carry out/dislikes doing.”
سلام ياعمر الفاروق
Quotes of ‘Umar (radiyallahu ‘anhu)
Umar bin Al-Khattab, the second caliph and Companion of the Prophet (peace be upon him) once said that if it were not for three pleasures, he would not find any joy in life.
One of these three pleasures was “sitting in the company of men who like to pick good topics for conversation just as people like to pick good dates from a tree.”
“Beware of excessive meat, for it has an addiction similar to that of wine”- (Muwatta Imam Malik, Hadith: 2702)
“Get used to a tough life, for luxury does not last forever.”
“I have never regretted my silence. As for my speech I’ve regretted it many times.”
“Allah loves moderation and hates extravagance and excess.”
Umar ibnul Khattab (ra) said: ”Invite people to Islam even without words” They asked ”How?” He replied ”With your manners.”
“I fear the day where disbelievers are proud of their falsehood and Muslims are shy of their faith.”
“The biggest gift after Iman (Faith) is your wives.”
وجدنا خير عيشنا بالصبر “We found the best of our lives through patience.”
Sayyiduna ‘Umar ibn Al Khattab (radiyallahu ‘anhu) wrote to his his governors saying, “In my view, the most important of your affairs is Salah. Whoever protects it and performs it [habitually and timeously], is protecting his Din. Whoever is negligent about it will be even more negligent about other matters…” (Muwatta Imam Malik, Hadith: 6)
‘Umar (May Allah be pleased with him)was an excellent judge of character, and he said: “Do not be deceived by a man’s eloquence rather whoever fulfills trusts and refrains from impugning people’s honor is a real man.”
And he used to say: “Don’t look at a man’s prayer or fasting, rather look at his reason and honesty.”
And he said: “There are two types of men I do not fear for you: A believer whose faith is obvious and a kafir whose kufr is obvious. Rather I fear for you the hypocrite who hides behind a show of faith but strives for some other purpose.
“When you see that any scholar loves the world, then his scholarship is in doubt.”
Umar RA series
Mawlana Tariq Jamil Saheb
The famous Tabi’i; Sayyiduna Sa’id ibn Musayyab (rahimahullah) reports that Sayyiduna ‘Umar (radiyallahu ‘anhu) laid eighteen sterling advices for the people, each one filled with wisdom:
1. When someone disobeys Allah in matters that impacts on you, you can retaliate in no better way than obeying Allah in matters that impact on him.
2. Always assume the best about your brother unless you learn something about him that you cannot reconcile.
3. Never assume the worst about any statement that a Muslim makes as long as you are able to make a good interpretation.
4. One who exposes himself to suspicion must never blame anyone who holds a bad opinion of him.
5. Whoever guards his secrets will retain the choice [and control of it] in his hands.
6. Ensure that you keep true friends to stay under their wings because they are a source of beauty during times of prosperity and a means of protection during times of hardship.
7. Ensure that you speak the truth even if it leads to your death.
8. Never delve into matters that do not concern you.
9. Do not ask about matters that have not occurred because that which has already taken place is enough to keep you occupied from that which has not.
10. Never seek your needs from one who does not love to see your success.
11. Never keep the company of a sinner, as you will learn his sinful ways.
12. Keep away from your enemy.
13 & 14. Beware even of your friends, except for the trustworthy one and none can be trustworthy unless he fears Allah.
15. To be humble in speech.
16. Lower yourself in obedience of Allah.
17. Stand firm against His disobedience.
18. Consult in your matters those who fear Allah, indeed Allah says:
انما يخشى الله من عباده العلمؤا
It is those who have knowledge among His slaves that fear Allah. (Surah Fatir, Verse: 28)
(Rawdatul ‘Uqala of Imam Ibn Hibban (rahimahullah), pg.82-83 with a chain of reliable narrators)
The New Year
by Shaykh Mawlānā Muhammad Saleem Dhorat hafizahullāh
Having just completed the year, the ‘New Year’ is seen and heard all around us. However, the question remains as to what should be a Muslim’s take on these events.
Upon the passing of a year, the common trend is to celebrate; people have birthday parties, wedding anniversaries etc. However, in certain spheres this is not the case; take the example of a businessman who at the end of the (financial) year will first take stock of the past year. He will meticulously go through the accounts of the past year taking into account every single penny. He will check to see if he made a profit, and if so then how can he make more in the coming year. He will check his expenses: where did he spend his money? Can he make further savings? All of this is done so that he can make the coming year more profitable than the one that has passed.
This should be the case at the end of the year in every Muslim’s life for we too have been sent to this world as businessmen with the commodity of time; which is life. We will have to one day give account for every second in the Court of Allāh ta‘ālā, when our books of deeds shall be presented.
We will bring forth a book for him that he will find wide open, (and We will say to him) ‘Read your book. Enough are you today to take your own account.’ (17:13-14)
‘Umar radhiyallāhu ‘anhu, emphasising the same, says:
Take stock of your own lives before Allāh ta‘ālā reckons you. And assess yourself before you are assessed by Allāh. And prepare yourselves for the great summoning.
It is our belief that on the Day of Judgement Allāh ta‘ālā will reckon us for everything that we did in the world.
On the day when everybody shall find present before him whatever good he did and whatever evil he did, he will wish there would have been a wide space between him and that (day). (3:30)
No matter how minute or trivial an act we did, we will find that it is present in our book of deeds.
So, whoever does any good act (even) to the weight of a particle will see it. And whoever does evil (even) to the weight of a particle will see it. (99:7-8)
This will be to the extent that in awe people will say:
‘Woe to us! What a book is this! It has missed nothing, minor or major, but has taken it into account.’ Thus they will find whatever they did present before them, and your Lord will not wrong anyone. (18:49)
We need to keep this reality in mind and spend our lives with regular reflection on our actions with Murāqabah and Muhāsabah. Murāqabah means to supervise and oversee oneself to ensure that he/she stays away from disobediences of Allāh ta‘ālā and spends every moment seeking the Pleasure of Allāh ta‘ālā. Muhāsabah means taking account of one’s activities at the end of the day, week and year; and thanking Allāh ta‘ālā for the ability to have performed any good actions and seeking forgiveness for any sins one may have committed. Inshā’allāh, if this is adhered to, then we will see a great change in our lives. We will find ourselves spending every second of our lives with great care.
The end of a year is a time to reflect and say to yourself, ‘Another year from my precious life has passed. Who knows how many more years, if any, I have remaining?’ Let us spend them in those avenues that bring the pleasure of Allāh ta‘ālā and stay away from those things that bring His displeasure, so that we can meet Allāh ta‘ālā in a state that He is pleased with us.
© Riyādul Jannah
We live in societies in which most men and women have lost their sense of modesty, women are obsessed with their appearances and wear clothes to be seen by others and to attract the attention of other men even if they are married! They have lost their sense of shame. Marriage is often looked upon as old-fashioned and short-term affairs and frivolous relationships are the norms, everyone waiting to attract a better partner and feeling totally justified to dump one partner for another at the drop of a hat. Feminism too has reached its peak and men and women are told to suppress their natural emotions. Men are not even embarrassed when their wives are dressed up and attract the attention of other men, they don’t mind if another man sees, chats laughs and even dances with their womenfolk and if they do mind, they are told not to be so possessive!
In Islam, we have a concept of gheerah. Gheerah is an Arabic word which means protectiveness or jealousy. It is a good type of jealousy, like when a man feels jealous or protective over his wife or sisters and other-womenfolk and doesn’t like other men to look at them. It is a natural inbuilt feeling Allah has given men and women. The Prophet (peace be upon him) had the most gheerah for his wives and all of the companions were known for their gheerah. All Muslim men should have a collective sense of protectiveness for Muslim women as Allah says in the Qur’an, the meaning of which is:
“The Men are the protectors and maintainers of women…” 
Men who do not care about how their women behave and appear in front of other men and don’t enforce hijaab upon their wives or women-folk are called dayyooth. Being a dayyooth is a major sin and a detailed description of this evil characteristic can be found in al-Dhahabi’s Book of Major Sins.
A story of Gheerah
To further understand the quality of gheerah, we can look at an incident that Asma’ (may Allah be pleased with her) the daughter of Abu Bakr al-Siddiq (may Allah be pleased with him) and sister of Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her), relates about herself. Abu Bakr was a wealthy merchant and married his daughter Asma’ to the great companion Az-Zubayr ibn al-‘Awwam (may Allah be pleased with him) who was a very poor man but a man of great piety and one of the companions who was promised Paradise. Asma’ relates:
“When Zubayr married me, he had neither land nor wealth nor slave…” so Asma’ had to work very hard kneading dough, going far off to get water. “And I used to carry on my head,” she continues, “the date stones from the land of Zubair which Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) had endowed him and it was a distance of two miles from Madinah. One day, as I was carrying the date-stones upon my head, I happened to meet Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him), along with a group of his Companions. He called me and told the camel to sit down so that he could make me ride behind him. I felt shy to go with men and I remembered Zubair and his gheerah and he was a man having the most gheerah. The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) understood my shyness and left. I came to Zubair and said: “The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) met me as I was carrying date-stones upon my head and there was with him a group of his Companions. He told the camel to kneel so that I could mount it, but I felt shy and I remembered your gheerah.” So Asma’ declined the offer made by the Prophet (peace be upon him). Upon this Zubair said: “By Allah, the thought of you carrying date-stones upon your head is more severe a burden on me than you riding with him.”
Sometimes Muslim women don’t understand if their menfolk want them to cover their faces or if they ask them to change something about the way they dress or speak in public, thinking that the men are being over-protective. But my dear sisters! If your husband asks you not to wear a certain colour of khimar because it brings out the beauty of your eyes or if he wants you to cover your face – be thankful! Be proud of the fact that your husband has a sense of gheerah for you and that he values you and cares for your hereafter. He knows what men can be like more than you do and so never try and suppress his gheerah in these types of matters. And his concern for you should incite your own sense of honour! Why should any man be able to see your beauty and think indecent thoughts about you? We must nurture our own and our menfolk’s sense of gheerah by behaving and dressing modestly ourselves and paying attention to their valid opinions. We expect certain behaviour from them and they expect it of us. And besides, if our husband asks us to do something that is not haram, we must do it.
Brothers! How can you allow your wife or sister to walk around attracting the attention and evil-thoughts of other men? How can you not mind if she smiles as she talks to other men? Nobody has the right to enjoy her and her company but you and her Maharim men. You are not overbearing if you first encourage and then enforce the hijab on your womenfolk because YOU will be asked about it on the Day of Judgement and it is also a major sin upon you! It is upon the men to enforce these things in their homes and you cannot use the excuse that your wife didn’t want to. Women need a firm, balanced, guiding hand from their men, so with wisdom, you must enforce hijab in your home. You are a shepherd and are responsible for your flock!
Allah reminds us all in the Qur’an, the meaning of which is:
“O you who believe, Protect yourselves and your families from a fire whose fuel is men and stones.”
There is a big difference between how Islam values and protects women and how cheaply women are treated outside of Islam. As Muslims, we have to be careful that our sense of modesty, shame and gheerah don’t wear out in a society in which people have lost it.
قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم: إني غيور وإن إبراهيم كان غيورا وما من امرئ لا يغار إلا منكوس القلب
Imam Abu Bakr ibn Abi Shaybah (rahimahullah) has recorded this Hadith [mursalan] with a weak chain.
(Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaybah with annotations of Shaykh Muhammad ‘Awwamah -hafizahullah-, Hadith: 18009)
Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said:
“Most certainly I have a sense of possessiveness [over my wives] and Ibrahim (‘alayhis salam) also had a sense of possessiveness over [his wife]. None except a [cuckold] is void of this quality.
And Allah Ta’ala Knows Best.
Answered by: Moulana Suhail Motala