1. Put Allah first, despite any resistance you may face for doing so. Be brave and speak up, even against friends and family.
2. Pose it as a question to engage the listener, tap into their conscience and to avoid direct confrontation.
3. Address them as ‘my people’ to remind them you’re family so they don’t psychologically distance themselves from you for opposing their view.
4. Tell them, ‘I fear for you’, which reminds them you are not out to hurt them, and that you want what is in their best interest.
5. Give examples to help them relate and understand better.
6. Remind them that ‘Allah doesn’t want to harm you, He doesn’t opress His servants. Allah wants you to do well.’
7. Tell them you’re there for them. This implies you’re leading by example, willing to take responsibility and be part of the solution.
8. Speak in an objective manner, don’t get sidetracked by interruption, and always bring it back to the point.
9. Bring everything into perspective by reminding them this life is temporary and the hereafter is what counts.
— Some lessons from the Believer of the Pharaoh’s family from the Quran (40:28-39)
In looking at how Allah made the sun, moon and stars to light up the physical world and to help us see, does it make sense for Him to leave our morals and spiritual world in the dark? Absolutely not, so He sent the Quran as source of guidance and light.
Different houses have different types of lights, a family living in a remote village might use lanterns at night, some use fluorescent lights, while others use typical lightbulbs. Regardless of what type they have, when the sun comes up we all do the same thing, we turn them off. The light from God came so we switch off our artificial lights.
The same goes for our minds and thoughts, when the guidance comes from Allah on a matter we switch off our personal views and feelings, in submission to the superior guidance from Him.
Light upon light.
— Paraphrased from Sh. Sharawi’s tafseer of Surat Al-Maedah
Whenever I see something that I find beautiful, like most people, I pick up my phone, hold it up and take a photo. Sometimes I’m so caught up in trying to take the perfect photo or video that I miss out on experiencing the moment.
And I noticed this feeling in my heart that I want to hold on to the beauty of the experience forever. It’s sort of a visual greed, expressed through my need to collect all the things I like and keep them. So seeing with my eyes isn’t enough, I literally want to capture it, steal it for myself and hoard it.
After mulling over why that is, I think maybe my reaction was in response to fear. A fear of losing the beauty, that I believe stems from a subconscious certainty that it, and everything else in this world, are only temporary.
Instead of using that understanding to give everything its due significance, I do the opposite and react with my fear of losing it and chase after it.
That’s Dunya in a nutshell, every blessing and experience are temporary, regardless of if we chase and hoard them or not. Either we will leave it behind or it will leave us. Only the hereafter is forever. And that’s worth chasing after.
If I want to immortalize the moment then I need to use the opportunity to thank God for blessing me and ask Him to bless it. That way I’ve hopefully earned His reward and sought His pleasure which does go with me into eternity Inshallah.
The sun rises so beautifully wrapped in soft shades of pink reflected on the clouds and a warm burst of golden yellow that gently fades into the blue sky. What a wonderful thing, it never gets old, it’s so unbelievably beautiful.
I didn’t used to get why the Quran talks about the sky and stuff so much. I thought it was repetitive. But it made a little more sense this morning.
Just as we can be certain of what He says about His signs in the universe around us, we can be equally sure of what He tells us of the unseen. We’ll know the hereafter is as real as the sunrise, as sure as it happening everyday until the day of judgement.
It’s the very same sky Allah is talking about in the Quran, Him above it as it suits His majesty and we’re below it. All of the creation silently points to the Creator, will we notice?
“…[It is] the promise of Allah, [which is] truth, and who is more truthful than Allah in statement.”
Knowing and slacking off is one thing, but be careful of those trying to argue against the rules of Allah to justify their position and feel confident in their blatant disobedience of God.
Arguing in the name of femenism, modernity and freedom doesn’t change the fact that it’s wrong. Just because everyone does it, doesn’t mean it is right. If you don’t arm yourself with knowledge and understanding you’ll have a hard time telling the difference.
1- Rectify your Intentions
2- Make a daily special time for Allah
3- Force yourself to do good even when you don’t feel like it.
4- Make a complete and final change not partial change for a temporary duration.
5- Ask Allah for help! You can’t do it yourself, even if you have the means.
When the Children of Israel were with Moses (pbuh) after leaving Egypt, they were given Mann and Salwa to eat as a gift from Allah. But they weren’t content with that, and instead asked Moses (pbuh) in surat Al-Baqarah to call on Allah for different types of foods that were grown from the earth.
Sh. Al-Sha’rawi was explaining that they didn’t trust what was from Allah to be good enough, and they wanted their choice of foods instead. He said, they put more stock in what they preferred and not what Allah chose and provided for them.
This made me think of how attached we get to what we think is best for us, and what we want. We make a plan and do the work, but we’re so invested in getting the specific results we wanted. When that’s not the case it’s painful for us to accept. Sometimes we’re even angry and bitter about it.
The lesson and challenge is in trusting Allah (swt) in His Wisdom and Knowledge and Mercy to do what’s best for us. It’s easy to think we have faith in Allah’s Wisdom because we’re getting what we want. But it’s an act of submission and faith to trust in Him when we don’t. We have to remember He’s teaching us and giving us Tarbiyah out of love for us. Our reaction when we’re tested is the chance to develop our character into true people of faith.
It starts with getting to know Allah (swt) first, then acts of the heart like fear, hope, love, reliance, trust and sincerity become more feasible. You can’t direct all that to someone you don’t know.
May He give us the tawfeeq to know Him, and to have full reliance on Him and trust what He can give us with more certainty than what’s in our own hands.
Sh. Muhammad b. Muhammad al-Mukhtar al-Shinqiti
If someone warns you that there’s a bad pothole ahead that can take out your tires, or black ice on the road, or a hidden police car on the highway, you would thank them. Because it’s in your best interest to avoid the harm they warned you about.
You’re well aware that what you stand to gain from avoiding the harm, outweighs the freedom of ignoring warnings and falling into it.
The reason many verses of the Quran mention the Messengers telling the people, “I’m not asking you for any compensation” is because the guidance they’ve come with is so beneficial to those receiving it, that common sense and social norms dictacte that such beneficial information would deserve compensation for all the good it brings.
Allah (swt) is guiding you around the potholes and protecting you from harm with His orders and prohibitions; for your benefit.
He doesn’t need to, and won’t lose anything if you ignore the warnings. If you want to reduce the religion to doing the minimal work and you want to be borderline in your obedience then it’s your loss; your tires. ”
Reflection on Sh. Al-Sharawi’s discussion of Surat As-Sajdah.