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Earning Virtues (Part 1)

October 18, 2011 Leave a comment

Listen Here:Earning Virtues” by Shaykh Zulfiqar Ahmad

This is a lecture by Shaykh Zulfiqar Ahmad, and it’s in Urdu so certain things will be lost in translation. He started by discussing an interesting story about Prophet Ibrahim that I hadn’t heard before. When he was a young boy he saw the stars and thought that his prayers should be for something as beautiful as the stars and deemed them his lord. Then, he noticed the moon and saw that it was bigger, brighter and more beautiful. He then claimed the moon to be lord. When the moon set and the sun rose, he saw that the sun was even greater and brighter. After trying to make these things the object of his worship, he realized that he couldn’t pray to something or love it when it wasn’t always there. Neither the sun or the moon is visible the whole day. This was the start of his realization of Allah, a powerful ever present creator.

In the same way, we shouldn’t love the fleeting things of this world: youth, beauty, wealth, status, fashion. They are passing and not worth our true love. When we have love for Allah سبحانه و تعالى‎ we are creating a bond of loyalty, something we can always rely on and will never disappoint us.

Our love for our Creator should motivate us to continually do good deeds for Him. We should always worry ourselves with doing good deeds, earning virtues. It should be so that our bodies are exhausted from the good works we do. We should be competing in doing good with others out of our deep love for Allah سبحانه و تعالى‎. Allah سبحانه و تعالى‎ loves it when we sacrifice to please Him (give up some sleep to pray tahajjud).

Once we make Allahسبحانه و تعالى‎ ours, the entire world will be ours. Once we love Him, all the people of the world will love us. Allah سبحانه و تعالى‎  places respect in the eyes of the people for those that He loves. Instead of sharing it with others, tell Him all your stories, your pain, your happiness. You have to keep Him in your mind at all times and create a deep connection, when you always think of Him, you’ll find that He’s ever close to YOU.

Imagine if someone wanted the reward of doing something without actually doing it, you would say that’s ridiculous right? But that’s the nature of Allah’s سبحانه و تعالى‎ mercy, the person who restrains himself from sin throughout the day will receive the reward of tahajjud while he’s in his sleep. If we protect our tongues, we get the reward of fasting the day. The one who has no wealth but wants his name between the sadaqa-givers should spread his knowledge to others.

The idea of doing good should always be on our minds, when we entertain bad thoughts they develop into something more and begin to take seed in our hearts. We have to recognize the desires of our nafs and see it as an enemy. We have to know when the enemy is attacking.

Ultimately there’s no great endeavor we have to undertake in order to be wali (friend) of Allah. The one who wants to be a wali of Allah should love for his fellow human what he loves for himself. Just as you wouldn’t want others to blame you or backbite you, you shouldn’t do it to others.

According to a hadith by the Prophet صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم this saying will weigh heavy on our nam-e-amal (list of deeds):

Subhan-Allahi wa bihamdihi Subhan-Allahil-azeem:

  • Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم said, “There are two statements that are light for the tongue to remember, heavy in the Scales and are dear to the Merciful: `Subhan-Allahi wa bihamdihi, Subhan-Allahil-Azim [Glory be to Allah and His is the praise, (and) Allah, the Greatest is free from imperfection)’.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

To be continued…

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The Bacteria of Sin

October 4, 2011 2 comments

Listen Here: “The Bacteria of Sin” by Shaykh Khalid Abdul Sattar

There are two types of impurities: Najaasa Haqiqi which is the physical impurity (like playing football in the rain) and Najaasa Huqmi which is the invisible impurity that exists in the soul.

If you compare water and milk, you’ll see that water can be left out for days and nothing happens to it but if milk is left out even for a few hours it can go bad. Water has no bacteria versus milk that has bacteria that can multiply and take over. This is the same with our hearts, Allah سبحانه و تعالى‎ gave us our pure hearts and all we have to do is keep it. Minor sins just wash away with “Astaghfirullah” but consistent small sins begin to grow, they’re like injected bacteria, and soon just like you cannot call bad milk, milk anymore, similarly you cannot call the heart, heart, anymore.

Allah سبحانه و تعالى‎ gave 12-13 years for us to learn how to be human without incurring any sin. He is ever merciful and simply forgives our sins by our asking. He gave us our pure hearts and told us how to take care of it and protect it, through the shariah and sunnah. But we consistently neglect our hearts, and they start going bad from the inside and don’t realize it because we can’t physically see it (Just like how an apple goes bad, from the inside).

We have to constantly seek Allah’s forgiveness. Sending the salawat on the Prophet صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم also adds a layer of protection from sin. Anyone who makes a firm intention to turn towards Allah سبحانه و تعالى‎, then all the doors will be open to him and Allah سبحانه و تعالى‎ will protect him from falling into sin. Subhan’Allah!

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Enemies of the Heart

October 3, 2011 4 comments

First of all, I’m sorry for the complete abandonment of my blog, especially to the 2-3 people who read it. Never again. I’ll try not to do it again.

On to the next lecture…

Listen Here: “Enemies of the Heart” by Shaykh Khalid Abdul Sattar

In this lecture Shaykh Khalid Abdul Sattar details the two enemies of the heart: the inner enemy (the nafs) and the outer enemy (the shaytaan). When a person commits a sin, a black dot appears on his heart and this darkness keeps growing as the person keeps sinning. However if he repents, it is cleared like it never existed.

  • The Shaytaan (devil): A tricky manipulator who makes the sins we commit lesser and lesser in our eyes. He makes us lose our understanding of the gravity of the sin. He makes us think our sins are “not that bad,” and even makes us blame others for our actions (My parents keep annoying me, I had to speak disrespectfully to them). He also puts doubt in our minds (Did I do wudhoo?) When he whispers the idea of a sin and the person does not do it, the shaytaan will keep coming at the person with different variations and temptations.
  • The Nafs: The nafs is the seat of our inner desires. It is not an inherently evil thing, it’s simply our most human desires. The nafs needs to be controlled and our desires need to be fulfilled in halal ways. When the nafs desires a sin, it will hold on to it firmly and no distraction will calm it.

Purity of heart will be the only thing that combats these enemies:

  • Our silence should be for Allah, our speaking should be for Allah. We usually don’t know much about anything but we will be the first to speak about it. The constant use of “I think this…”
  • “Speaking much without the mention of Allah is a sign of a hard heart and the one furthest from Allah is the one with the hard heart” – Ibn Umar
  • Umar al Khattab (ra) said ” The one who speaks the most will have the most sins.
  • The  Prophetصلی اللہ علیہ وسلم said “The one who guarantees me [the purity] of his mouth and private parts, I guarantee him paradise”
  • There is great power in words, our outer and inner language should revolve around the remembrance of Allah Most High.

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