Archive for October, 2009

Literary Characteristics of The Quran

October 31st, 2009 No comments

By Nouman Ali Khan. The Qur’an is stunning in its beauty, captivating in its words, overpowering in its message, enchanting in its harmony and baffling in its subtlety. This description means little to most, whose only exposure to the Qur’an is in translation. Join us in this remarkably unique single weekend seminar in which we will explore the unparalleled literary beauty of the Qur’an. Designed for audiences with and without background in Arabic, the program seeks to inspire unforgettable awe and appreciation of the greatest gift to humanity, the final installment of Divine Speech.

Categories: Nouman Ali Khan Tags:

Turner of Hearts

October 31st, 2009 No comments


In the age of sultans and viziers there once lived a poor but pious shaykh and a vizier who feared Allah. The fact that the shaykh was poor did not concern him, he was satisfied with whatever Allah sent him.

The shaykh was wise and knew that Allah rewards those who give charity in His Name receive a very handsome reward — a reward far greater than anyone can imagine. It was not the shaykh’s custom to ask anyone for help, but one day he really needed help so he decided to visit the vizier and ask for his help.

Without hesitation the good hearted vizier instructed his wakeel to give the shaykh 50 dirhams, which was quite a lot of money in those days.

The next week the shaykh needed more help so he went to visit the vizier and asked his help once again. When the vizier saw the shaykh he was taken aback and exclaimed “Shaykh, I gave you 50 dirhams only last week!”

The shaykh accepted the vizier’s decision and started to leave. As he left it seemed to the vizier that the shaykh was muttering something disagreeable about him to himself, however, he could not hear exactly what he was saying and said “Shaykh, aren’t you ashamed to speak against me?”

The shaykh was taken by surprise. It had not occurred to him that the vizier should think that he would do such a thing and told him that it was not so, and that he was remembering Allah saying: “O You, the Turner of hearts and eyes.”

The vizier felt ashamed of himself for thinking that the shaykh would do such a thing and quickly called for his quill and paper. His assistant handed him the quill and paper and the vizier started to write: “Give the shaykh 50 dirhams,” but instead of writing “dirhams” he wrote “dinars” — which is a lot more money.

As the shaykh thanked the vizier he did not notice what was written on the paper and took the note to the wakeel for payment.

When the wakeel read the note both he and the shaykh were surprised when he read aloud “Pay the shaykh 50 dinars,” so the wakeel asked the shaykh what he had sold the vizier. The shaykh told him that he had not sold him anything and told him what had happened.

Now the wakeel thought he had better check with the vizier before giving the shaykh such a large amount of money, so he went to the vizier to show him what he had written.

When the vizier read the note he smiled and said “His supplication has been answered, the shaykh called upon ‘He who causes hearts to turn.’ The Turner of hearts has turned both the heart and pen, therefore give him the 50 dinars.”

Categories: Tales of Wisdom Tags:

The Success Story

October 19th, 2009 No comments

At Age 4…… Success is….. Not peeing in your pants
في عمر 4…….. النجاح هو….. عدم التبوّل في ملابسك

At Age 6…… Success is….. Finding your way home – From school
في عمر 6…….. النجاح هو….. إيجاد طريقك للبيت – من المدرسة

At Age 12…. Success is… Having friends
في عمر 12…… النجاح هو….. لديك أصدقاء

At Age 18…. Success is…. Having a driver’s license
في عمر 18…… النجاح هو….. الحصول على رخصة قيادة

At Age 20….. Success is … Having money
في عمر 20…… النجاح هو….. الحصول على المال

At Age 35…… Success is… Having money
في عمر 35…… النجاح هو….. الحصول على المال

At Age 45…..Success is… Having money
في عمر 45…… النجاح هو….. الحصول على المال

At Age 55…… Success is… Having money
في عمر 55…… النجاح هو….. الحصول على المال

At Age 60……Success is…. Having money
في عمر 60…… النجاح هو….. الحصول على المال

At Age 65….. Success is… Keeping a driver’s license
في عمر 65…… النجاح هو….. استمرار مفعول رخصة القيادة

At Age 70…..Success is… Having friends
في عمر 70…… النجاح هو….. لديك أصدقاء

At Age 75…..Success is … Finding your way home – From anywhere
في عمر 75…… النجاح هو….. إيجاد طريقك للبيت – من أي مكان

At Age 80…..Success is… Not peeing in your pants
في عمر 80…… النجاح هو…… عدم التبوّل في ملابسك

هكذا هي الحياة…

أقل من أن نجري خلفها…

فاعمل لآخرتك,,,,

Categories: General Tags:

Mahmoud’s Khatam Al-Quran

October 15th, 2009 No comments

Last Sat 4th Oct, we celebrated the khatam of Quran for Dr. Murshid's son Mahmoud. Dr. Shafiq-Ur-Rahman gave some words of reminder. He encourages parents to start the process of hifz of Quran for their children as early as 6 years old as he has done this past Ramadhan with his son Hizam.
The following is the recording of the event.

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Hizam (age 6) recites the quran

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Dr. Shafiq short talk

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Mahmoud recites the quran

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Dr. Idries comments

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Dr. Shafiq closing dua

Categories: General Tags:

The Shrine

October 15th, 2009 No comments


Mulla Nasrudin’s father was the highly-respected keeper of a shrine, the burial-place of a great teacher which was a place of pligrimage attracting the credulous and the Seekers After Truth alike.

In the usual course of events, Nasrudin could be expected to inherit this position. But soon after his fifteenth year, when he was considered to be a man, he decided to follow the ancient maxim: ‘Seek knowledge, even if it be in China.’

‘I will not try to prevent you, my son,’ said his father. So Nasrudin saddled a donkey and set off on his travels.

He visited the lands of Egypt and Babylon, roamed in the Arabian Desert, struck northward to Iconium, to Bokhara, Samarkand and the Hindu-Kush mountains, consorting with dervishes and always heading towards the farthest East.
Nasrudin was struggling across the mountain ranges in Kashmir after a detour through Little Tibet when, overcome by the rarefied atmosphere and privations, his donkey laid down and died.

Nasrudin was overcome with grief; for this was the only constant companion of his journeyings, which had covered a period of a dozen years or more. Heartbroken, he buried his friend and raised a simple mound over the grave. There he remained in silent meditation; the towering mountains above him, and the rushing torrents below.

Before very long people who were taking the mountain road between India and Central Asia, China and the shrines of Turkestan, observed this lonely figure: alternately weeping at his loss and gazing across the valleys of Kashmir.

‘This must indeed be the grave of a holy man,’ they said to one another; ‘and a man of no mean accomplishments, if his disciple mourns him thus. Why he has been here for many months, and his grief shows no sign of abating.’

Presently a rich man passed, and gave orders for a dome and shrine to be erected on the spot, as a pious act. Other pilgrims terraced the mountainside and planted crops whose produce went to he upkeep of the shrine. The fame of the Silent Mourning Dervish spread until Nasrudin’s father came to hear of it. He at once set off on a pilgrimage to the sanctified spot. When he saw Nasrudin he asked him what had happened. Nasrudin told him. The old dervish raised his hands in amazement:

‘Know, O my son,’ he exclaimed, ‘that the shrine where you were brought up and which you abandoned was raised in exactly the same manner, by a similar chain of events, when my own donkey died, over thirty years ago.

Caravan of Dreams-Idries Shah

Imam al-Ghazali on Disagreement, Conflict, Debate, & Argumentation

October 5th, 2009 2 comments

Imam al-Ghazali (d. 505/1111, may Allah have mercy on him and help us to benefit from him) divided his monumental work The Revival of the Religious Sciences into four main parts: al-‘Ibadaat (Acts of Worship), al-‘Adaat (Customary Practices), al-Muhlikaat (Destructive Vices), and al-Munjiyat (Saving Virtues). In the first part (and each part comprises ten “books”), there is an extremely beneficial section concerning disagreement and conflict as well as the harmful nature of debate and argumentation. In fact, it was this very section (situated in the middle of the Book of Knowledge), that had a major effect on me back in the days when I was a student at the Islamic University of Madinah (specifically towards the end of my third and final year there. Al-hamdu lillah, I chanced upon this glorious work of the noble Imam just months before the advent of a serious and life-altering transformation in my intellectual and spiritual direction. Looking back to those days, I can honestly say that this truly incredible work was a significant and contributing factor in my decision to leave my studies there, moving on to places such as Morocco, Mauritania, and the Hadramawt Valley of Yemen (where I came in contact with this same work yet again, but in a way that I never could have imagined)).

After delineating the eight essential conditions for the proper conduct of intellectual and religious debates (which spans several pages), Imam al-Ghazali goes on to discuss the ten qualities that are considered to be the “main inward abominations” (literally, the “inward mothers of abomination” (ummahaat al-fawahish al-batinah)), the very qualities that debate itself has a tendency to engender in its participants. He lists each of these ten qualities, following each one up with a detailed description of how they are brought about and occasionally citing verses of the Quran as well as traditions narrated from our beloved Messenger, peace and blessings be upon him.

The ten qualities are as follows:

1.Envy (hasad)
2.Arrogance (takabbur)
3.Enmity (hiqd)
4.Backbiting (ghibah)
5.Self-promotion (tazkiyah al-nafs) [In this context this term certainly does not mean “purification of the soul”!]
6.Spying and faultfinding (tajassus wa tatabbu’ al-‘awraat)
7.Finding joy in the bad news of others and grief concerning what brings them joy
8.Hypocrisy (nifaq)
9.Haughtiness in accepting truth, showing contempt for it, and avidness to argue concerning it.
10.Ostentation, paying attention to the creation, and striving to turn their hearts and faces (towards one).

I must say that this is quite the laundry list of seriously troubling characteristics! After a very detailed account (again, spanning several pages), the Imam goes on to say that each one of these ten qualities can further be divided into yet another ten, equally dangerous and blameworthy (as if the first ten weren’t enough!).

He then says:

Debaters are at variance with regards to these qualities in accordance with their levels—and they have many levels—and even the greatest of these debaters in both Deen and intellect is still not safe from at least some of these characteristics. The best that he can do is to hide them, or fight against his self (nafs) with regards to them.

He then goes on to say:

[You should] know that these blameworthy qualities are also inescapable for those that occupy themselves with reminding and admonishing the masses [i.e., preachers and teachers], those who seek public acceptance, attainment of status, or gaining wealth and glory. […] In summary, these traits are unavoidable for anyone that seeks knowledge for other than the reward of Allah (the Exalted) in the Hereafter. For knowledge neglects not the knower (scholar)—it destroys him with an eternal destruction or grants him everlasting life.

At the end of this invaluable section of the Ihya, he finishes by saying:

The one who seeks leadership (ri’asah) is personally destroyed, even though he may rectify others. But such is only with the condition that he advocates doing without the things of this world and is one whose outward state is congruent with the outward state of the scholars from the pious predecessors (the Salaf), notwithstanding the fact that he harbors an intent for status and position (al-jah). His example is like the candle that burns itself while others derive light from it. The rectification of others lies in his very destruction. On the other hand, if he actually advocates the quest for the things of this world, then his similitude is like that of the burning fire: it consumes itself and everything else.

Therefore, the scholars are three in number:

1.One who destroys himself and others. These are the ones that are manifest in their desire for the world and are inclined to it.
2.One who brings felicity to himself as well as others. These are the callers of the creation to Allah (the Exalted), both inwardly and outwardly.
3.And finally, one who destroys himself while bringing felicity to others, such as those who call to the next life, outwardly rejecting the life of this world, but inwardly seeking the acceptance of creation and the attainment of status (al-jah).
Hence, look and see in which category you fall and that for which you have been busying yourself with preparation. Never think that Allah (the Exhalted) will accept anything other than what is purely for His sake, from both knowledge and action.

May Allah reward Imam al-Ghazali for sharing these beautiful and priceless teachings and perspicuous insights, and may Allah help us to internalize these matters and live in accordance with what they indicate… Amin.

Sincerely your brother,
Khalil Abu Asmaa.


Categories: Khalil Moore Tags:

Meaning of Fate

October 2nd, 2009 No comments


A certain man asked the famous Mulla Nasrudin, “What is the meaning of fate?”

Mulla replied, “Assumptions.”

“In what way?” the man asked again.

Mulla looked at him and said, “You assume things are going to go well and when they do not, you call that bad luck. You assume things are going to go badly and when they do not, you call that good luck. You assume certain things are going to happen or not happen a certain way, but you do not know what is going to actually happen. You assume the future is unknown. When you are caught out (things do not work out for you), you call that Fate.”

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October 2nd, 2009 No comments

The Caravan of Pride (Mawkeb-ul Abaa) is an eye-opening movie which skilfully portrays the heart wrenching series of events that unfolded after the martyrdom of Imam Hussain. After the massacre which took place on the plains of Karbala, the remaining members of the Family of the Holy Prophet (saw), who were not killed in the war, were taken captive and paraded in a humiliating and degrading fashion from Kufa (Iraq) to Shaam (Syria).

After the Caravan were paraded through the most difficult of conditions, underwent the most excruciating pain and were afflicted with the greatest of torments, they were finally brought to Yazids Palace in Damascus, Syria. It was here, in the very stronghold of Yazid, that the light of Truth pierced through the dark veils of ignorance Satan had thrown over the eyes of the Muslim masses, it was here, under the eternally damned eyes of the tyrant Yazid, that Syeda Zainab, the daughter of the ever victorious Lion of Allah, Ali ibne abi-Talib, delivered a unparalleled, pivotal and crucial sermon which awoke the people of Damascus from their deep slumber of heedlessness and shook the foundation of the Umayyad Dynasty, sending it crumbling to the ground. It was here, that Imam Zain ul-Abideen, in such magnificent words of eloquence, informed the people of Damascus who exactly it was they were oppressing by telling them the relationship he holds with the Holy Prophet, his great grandfather. Thus was the revolution of Imam Hussain completed, a revolution against injustice, a revolution against tyranny, a revolution seeking honour over humiliation, truth over falsehood, courage over fright, righteousness over immorality, knowledge over ignorance, a revolution whose shockwaves continue to resonate thousands of years later, and a revolution, an eternal stand against corruption, which proves to be the source of inspiration for humanity at whole…
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