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Posts Tagged ‘Ramadan’

Ramadan: The Treasure of Mercy and Absolution

July 14, 2013 3 comments

First of all, Ramadan Mubarak! Is it just me or have the last 4 days of Ramadan actually superseded the normal passage of time thereby damaging our innate time-sensing abilities and forcing us to fall into the dizzying black hole of questioning time and existence to ultimately end up sitting in a corner trying to quell the horror of knowing that this life is fleeting, but always acting as if it isn’t? It’s just me?

Perhaps we can actually avail of some of these moments and derive motivation from the awesome Ramadan lectures that have been going on.

Aalimah Humera Ahmad (student of Shaykh Zulfiqar) has been doing an amazing Tafseer of Quran in Urdu everyday which can be listened to at 424-203-8000 code 147551# (for women only). Also taught in English with the same number except with code 762992#.

Another great talk is called “Maximizing Ramadan” by Shaykh Kamaluddin Ahmed.

Today I have some notes on Shaykh Zulfiqar’s recent talk called Ramadan: The Treasure of Mercy and Absolution (translated).

Listen Here: “Ramadan: Rahmat or Maghfirat ka Khazeena” 

When Allah سبحانه و تعالى‎ told his angels to prostrate to Adam عليه السلام‎, everyone did except Iblees. When Allah asked him why he wouldn’t submit, he replied that “I am better than Adam.” He was told to leave but he asked to have time until the Day of Judgment. When he received it, he vowed to tempt humankind until the last day. Allah responded by saying that, in your competition with my people, those who manage to save themselves will be my elect people. Shaytaan (Iblees) asked Allah for provisions in his battle, and he was given the ability to be unseen by humans and have a progeny such that there will be multiple shaytaans for every human. Hazrat Adam عليه السلام‎ also asked for provisions. Allah سبحانه و تعالى said, whenever you commit a sin and repent, I will forgive you. This is our greatest might, to be able to wipe our slates clean of any sin.

Please take a moment to consider the existence of Shaytaan. Just like a mother never likes to place blame on her child, she’ll just say “He is a good kid, his friends misguided him,” similarly through His divine love, Allah سبحانه و تعالى also does not like to place blame on his people. On that Day, He will say that Shaytaan misguided His people. If there were no Shaytaan, then wouldn’t we be solely responsible for all of our sins? The Shaytaan is an excuse for His forgiveness.

In this month of Ramadan, not only are all the temptations of Shaytaan eliminated, but the rewards for our good deeds are multiplied (Nafl=Fard, Itikaf= 2 Hajj and Umrah, etc.). Additionally there are great moments of acceptance, like during sahoor and before iftar. Allah سبحانه و تعالى is sending down blank checks in these great moments and we should fill them as much as we can.

The worship done in the blessed night of Laylatul Qadr is equivalent to 1000 months of worship (meaning 83 years). Everyone receives forgiveness in this night except four:

  • the one who drinks
  • the one who is disobedient to parents
  • the one who breaks familial relations
  • And the one who harbors malice for others

It is our fasting and our Quran that will be our saviors on the last day. Just how the citizens of a country can enter it easily, one door of Paradise called “Bab-e-Rayyaan” will be the easy access for the diligent in fasting. Allah سبحانه و تعالى has said that “Fasting is for me, so its reward is with me.” Let us immerse ourselves in worship during Allah’s month. Let us do such good deeds that we become absolved of all our past misdeeds.

Ramadan-Kareem-Wallpaper

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Midnight Talk # 3

October 12, 2012 2 comments

Sister Amina Tirmizi was kind enough to send me these notes she took of Shaykh Husain Abdul Sattar’s itikaf talks. Masha’Allah they’re excellent notes, I will put up the rest soon.

Listen Here: “Midnight Talk #3” by Shaykh Husain Abdul Sattar

The way to attract the love of your Lord is through the Sunnah (the way of the Prophet). The believers recognize that they and their Lord are incomparable. Allah is majestic, humans are weak. Allah is rich, humans are poor. The interface in which human beings can connect with their Lord (need interfaces to connect to incompatible things, ie. need an adapter to plug in to use something abroad) is the interface of Rasoolallah صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم. The sunnah creates the opportunity for love of Allah, “qul in kuntum tuhibullah, fatabiuni, yuhbibukumullah.” We are physically and spiritually impure. How can we attract the attention of Allah despite our deficiencies? Allah loved the Prophet صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم  and if we begin to mimic him, then that sunnah attracts the attention of Allah and makes us capable of being loved by him. The sunnah is the mechanism to attain the love of Allahسبحانه و تعالى .

Imagine you are someone who wants to beautify yourself,you look through your jewelry box and you put on diamonds, pearls, and rubies, because you know they will attract attention. In the same way, each sunnah is like a diamond or a pearl. Each one is its own magnet and attracts Allah in its own way.

Nabi  صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم left a very small footprint in this world, he used to wear worn-out clothing with patches on it, days would go by where he wouldn’t eat, fire did not burn in his house for months etc. This was our Nabi’s interaction with the world. Remember:

  • Allah سبحانه و تعالى‎ owns the planet and the entire universe and if we use anything we should recognize that we are taking from his dominion. This means we should use according to necessity and not waste anything. We are travelers on a journey.
  • The companions of Nabi صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم used to think, “This is a place to give, and that is a place to take” (the world is a place where you take little and give a -lot, the hereafter is the place where you truly take). Hadrat Umar رضي الله عنه was given a cold cup of water and he wept thinking that maybe something in his next life would diminish if he took it. It’s like checking in to a hotel, you check in in 1973 and check out at 2020.
  • The goal is to take less here so we can take more there. We should take the wealth we have and feed others, use our time and strength to serve others, make sure everyone’s needs are filled before our desires are fed. We should plant seeds here, and reap our harvest in the hereafter.
  • Seek every opportunity to be in the service of Allah’s creation. Alleviating a difficulty of someone freezes us from the hellfire. Don’t you think we will be compared with the person who died of starvation? How can we fill our stomachs when other people are hungry? The way of the Prophet صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم is to take what you need (what is minimal) and make sure everyone else receives what they need.

May Allah make us amongst those who embed the sunnah in our lives, may He grant us abundance in our health and wealth so we can serve others with it.

Repentance and Laylatul Qadr

August 15, 2012 Leave a comment

Listen Here:Repentance and Laylatul Qadr” by Shaykh Zulfiqar Ahmad

Ramadan is going by so fast, tonight is already the 27th! It is the second to last night odd night, so it might be Laylatul Qadr (The Night of Power). Accordingly, here are some quick notes on a talk about Laylatul Qadr by Shaykh Zulfiqar Ahmad. It actually goes well (yes, certain talks go well together like biryani and raitha) with a recent talk by Shaykh Omar Hussaini called The Importance of Working Hard and Keeping Busy because he energizes you and motivates you to work hard, which is especially key in the last couple of days of Ramadan.

In the first half of this lecture, Shaykh Zulfiqar highlights the parts of the Quran in which Allah سبحانه و تعالى‎ establishes himself as forgiving. Allah سبحانه و تعالى‎ is the Most Forgiving, he loves to forgive. We should spend the nights of Laylatul Qadr in deep repentance. However, achieving forgiveness has conditions:

  • The person should be ashamed and regret his sin.
  • The person should not engage in that sin again even though he his capable of it.
  • The person rids himself of that sin for the sake of Allah سبحانه و تعالى‎ (someone may seek forgiveness for gambling after losing a ton of money, but his aim is not Allah, he is just afraid of losing wealth)
  • If the person has done something against another, he should first seek forgiveness from that person (if you engaged in backbiting, it is not proper to tell the person what you said about him, rather ask forgiveness in generalities: “Please forgive me for my mistakes”).
  • The person should perform good deeds similar to the sins he committed (If he used to drink alcohol, he should spend extra time providing water to the thirsty. If he used to hurt others, he should spend time making them happy).

The Importance of Ramadan

August 1, 2012 Leave a comment

Listen Here:Ehmiyat-e-Ramadan” by Shaykh Zulfiqar Ahmad

Ok, so I haven’t attained consistency. It’s a work in progress. But I will be putting up notes on different Ramadan related talks this month insha’Allah. This is a talk by Shaykh Zulfiqar Ahmad in which he discusses Ramadan and the Quran.

Someone recites a wonderful nasheed in the beginning of the talk, here are some lines (poorly translated):

Sari dunya mein asa nazara nahin,                        There is nothing in the world like this,

Asa manzar zamanay mein dekha nahin,               The ages haven’t seen anything,

Jaisay manzar Madinay main moujud hai.               Like the scene in Madinah.

Hai nazar main jamal-e-habib-e-Khuda,                 The beloved of Allah is in sight,

Jiski tasveer seenay main moujud hai.                   The one whose picture is within my heart.

Ramadan is the month of patience, the month of forgiveness, and it is also the month of Quran. It is the month in which the Quran was revealed. Our fasts and the Quran have a strong connection; both will stand as intercessors on our behalf on the Day of Judgment. The Quran should be recited as much as possible throughout this month.

It was normal for the pious predecessors to read at least one full Quran (usually more) e v e r y d a y. It might sound unusual to us because we have never interacted with such people but they existed. It was easy for them because of their righteousness. The person who has loads of sins on his head will find it very hard to even read one page of Quran. The similitude of this person is like one who has an illness. A person with a fever will not be able to walk around, do work, or even eat. If that same person is healthy, then everything will be easy for him. In the same way, a person who is spiritually ill will find it hard to do spiritual works.

“Salah is heavy for those who lack khushu (presence of heart)”.  

We should pray to Allah to be among those who love the Quran, who love to read the Quran, who love to hear the Quran, who are impacted and changed by the Quran. The pious predecessors would fall in prostration crying upon hearing the Quran. When have we last fallen in prostration from the words of the Quran, much less in tears? Aisha رضي الله عنه reported that she saw the tears of the Prophet صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم fall to the floor while reciting the Quran. We have made our hearts so hard that hearing Allah’s words doesn’t induce tears. We have to sincerely request Allah سبحانه و تعالى to soften our hearts, we have to repent for our sins, and consistently do Istaghfar, do good works, and seek His mercy.

We should aim to make the Quran very close to our hearts this Ramadan, so much so that its recitation is the joy of our day.

“If someone wants to know how close he is to his Lord, let him find out how close he is to the Quran.”

My thoughts: Need to learn Arabic. It is essential in developing a lasting relationship with the Quran.

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