Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Nations and Tribes

O mankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that ye may know each other (not that ye may despise each other). Verily the most honoured of you in the sight of Allah is (he who is) the most righteous of you. And Allah has full knowledge and is well acquainted (with all things).
(Yusuf Ali translation - Qur'an 49:13)

My local masjid has this ayah printed on a banner that hangs in the gymnasium/extended prayer hall...and growing up, when I my heart first consciously began to incline toward practicing this beautiful deen of ours, the ayah always resonated with me...each time I'd see it, I'd be filled with a certain, unmistakable peace...the knowledge that this was the way for all of mankind -- regardless of colour, culture or language, and free of all castes -- that Allah had made us all and that He loves us all. I thought I'd post it to remind myself and others who read this blog, that this is really the way of Allah, and that we need to pay more than just lip service to this ideal that is free of all racism, if we are to unite and be successful as an ummah at both the micro and macro level -- Arabs are not superior to Persians, Persians are not superior to Indo-Paks, and as much as I love being Punjabi, we are not superior to Hydrabadis (nor are they superior to us!)..and well, you get the point.

must come to truly and sincerely love one another.


Time with Mufti Taqi: Smiling through sickness, and the hadith of mercy (Seeker's Digest)

Time with Mufti Taqi: Smiling through sickness, and the hadith of mercy

June 28th, 2006

Over the last few days, some of us have been spending a lot of time with Mufti Taqi Usmani, as he fell rather ill during the Islamic Fiqh Academy’s annual session, here in Amman (Jordan.) [He is much better now, Alhamdulillah.]

It has been amazing how the noble shaykh has been smiling and joyous throughout his illness and subsequent weakness–and how patient he has been under the barrage of questions that has been showering down upon him.

The scholars at the conference–many of the leading scholars of our Umma–have amazing deference and respect for Mufti Taqi. Some scholars, including Shaykh Muhammad Adnan Darwish, came down from Syria just to visit him briefly, and to seek his du`a’ and ijaza of baraka. Other notable scholars, such as Shaykh Akram Abd al-Wahhab al-Mawsuli, visited him. Mufti Taqi and Shaykh Akram exchanged ijazas, after each insisted that they were unworthy of such a matter.

Questions and the Hadith of Mercy

There was a beautiful majlis in which these scholars from Syria, Jordan, and Iraq asked Mufti Taqi a number of questions on contemporary issues, and sought his guidance.

Then Shaykh Iyad al-Ghawj asked the Shaykh to transmit the “Hadith al-Musalsal bi’l Awwaliyya,” a famous Prophetic hadith transmitted (with contiguous isnad) with each narrator having heard this particular hadith first before others from the person above them in the chain. The hadith is, without the full chain, is related by Abd Allah ibn Amr (Allah be pleased with him), that the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) said,

“The merciful are shown mercy by the All-Merciful. Have mercy to those on earth, and the Lord of the Heavens will have mercy upon you.” [Tirmidhi]

عن عبد اللَّه بن عمرو - رضي الله عنهما - قال: قال رسول الله صلى الله
عليه وسلم: «الراحمون يرحمهم الرحمن، ارحموا من في الأرض يرحمكم من في

Mufti Taqi related this from Shaykh Abd al-Fattah Abu Ghudda, Shaykh Hasan al-Mashshat al-Maliki, and Shaykh Yasin al-Fadani. [The previous day, Shaykh Ali Jumu`ah had narrated this hadith through his chains, including Shaykh al-Hafidh al-Tijani, and Shaykh Abd Allah ibn Siddiq al-Ghumari.]

May Allah shower His mercy upon us, and make us of those whom He loves.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Contentions 10 - Shaykh Abdal-Hakim Murad

Some of my favourite contentions from Sh. Murad's latest set:

  • The philosophers have only interpreted the world in various ways. The point, however, is not to be changed by it.
  • If you cannot be of the poor, then be with the poor. If you cannot be with the poor, then pray with the poor. If you cannot pray with the poor, then pray for the poor. Beyond this there remains not an atom’s weight of faith.
  • ‘Blessing’ is a large word, but do not be slow to use it.
  • To switch on a television is to acknowledge one’s own lack of refinement.
  • Use silence to suffocate falsehood, not truth.
  • Feminism? First empower femininity.
  • Dress in that which you would not see dishonoured.
  • The Qutb has been replaced by the kutub.
  • Blame yourself, not the age. Blame the age, not others.
  • Knowledge is to see the door. Penitence is to approach it. Prayer is to knock upon it. But to open it is not within your power.
  • Our condition is ignorance of our condition.
  • Only in the din al-fitra are women adequately acknowledged.
  • Do not doubt another’s salvation until you are certain of your own.
  • There is no knowledge of Him without love of beauty. We have been created to love beauty.
  • Despair not of those who are drawn to ugliness, for they too are probing the mysteries.
  • Others are our fellow-travellers, even if they have lost the road.
  • He that struggles to progress, though he has not been shown the road, is better than he that stands upon the road, pridefully mocking.
  • He who does not love fiqh has no body.
  • ‘I never think back. Since I cannot change the past, why should I deal with it?’ (Shimon Perez.)
  • Contingent being has no power. (‘No fear is upon them, neither do they grieve.’)
  • Religion begins where empathy tends.
  • A tariqa carries fare-paying passengers. If they will not pay, it should not continue as a railway preservation society.
  • You may show a man a thousand miracles, but if you show him no compassion, he will not believe.
  • I am my weakness; You are my strength.
  • A good prayer is from Him; a bad prayer is from us.
  • A pious young cricketing fan,
    Cheered Middlesex and Pakistan;
    For with contemplation
    On God’s revelation
    He found neither team in the Koran.
  • Which is it, of the blessings of your Lord, that you deserve?

Thursday, June 22, 2006



"And the remembrance of Allah is greater!"

"Wa la-dhikru'Llahi Akbar!"

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Augustine on Coming to Love

Augustine writes,

"Late have I loved you, beauty so old and so new: late have I loved you.
see, you were within and I was in the external world and sought you
there, and
in my unlovely state I plunged into those lovely created
things which you
made. You were with me, and I was not with you. The
lovely things kept me far
from you, though if they did not have their
existence in you, they had no
existence at all. You called and cried out
loud and shattered my deafness. You
were radiant and resplendent, you put
to flight my blindness. You were
fragrant, and I drew in my breath and now
pant after you. I tasted you, and I
feel but hunger and thirst for you.
You touched me, and I am set on fire to
attain the peace which is yours."

(X. XXVII(38), Chadwick trans., p. 201)

Friday, June 16, 2006

The Basis of the Path

The basis of the path is the focus of one's entire being on Allah. Detachment allows the heart to focus on Allah...

"Whoever leaves something of this world to gain something of the next world, will gain both. Whoever leaves something of the next world to gain something of this world, loses both."

Allah is the Most Merciful of the merciful and keener for our best interest than we are ourselves. Whoever knows the favour of Allah upon him, spends his life in thanking Him. Abu'l Hasan al-Shadhili said while spending seven years in a cave, "Oh Allah, when will I be a servant who is grateful to You?" and he heard an echo "When you don't see anyone in the world bestowing favours on you, but Allah, you are grateful". Most people don't see the greatness of Allah because of their ego--the ego has trouble avoiding arrogance, it must have it's way always vying with Allah and what He has decided.

If you want to move on the Path, you must be organized. Shaykh Nuh translated a text (roughly) as follows: "Whoever wants to draw closer to Allah, let him organize his works. Let him begin by disengaging his keenness for this worldliness: the meaning of zuhd is the diminishing of things. The blessings one needs to do without are the ones he has no shukr to Allah for because these are doing him no good".

We must understand the difference between the finite and the infinite. The finite is that which calls one to "things, things, and more things"; the infinite consists of actions done by the limbs and the heart, which call to that which is without end. We must leave excess the way a mountain climber only takes with him the absolutely necessary because we are on a journey out of this world.

[Sh. Nuh Keller, Toronto Suhba 2006 - reading from a text. These are my notes and may contain errors -- if so, they are mine and in no way reflective of the Shaykh or his teachings.]

Ignorance is not bliss

What you don't know may very well hurt you.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Doha Debates Special (Qatar Foundation) BBC World

Doha Debates Special (Qatar Foundation) BBC World
For more information, please visit: www.thedohadebates.com
QuickTime: Low

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Recommended Reading List

It's that time of year again when school's almost out for the summer. Two months off for the students so I thought I'd send them off with a reading list different from the classics they have to read in school. The following are all books I'd like to own, insha'Allah:

TV Related

Environment Related

Food Related

  • Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal by Eric Schlosser
  • Chew On This : Everything You Don't Want to Know About Fast Food by Eric Schlosser
  • The China Study : The Most Comprehensive Study of Nutrition Ever Conducted and the Startling Implications for Diet, Weight Loss and Long-Term Health by T. Colin Campbell


  • The Disappearance of Childhood by Neil Postman
  • No Logo: Taking Aim at the Brand Bullies by Naomi Klein
  • The Tipping Point : How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference by Malcolm Gladwell
  • Culture Jam: How to Reverse America's Suicidal Consumer Binge-And Why We Must by Kalle Lasn

Computer/Technology Related


  • The End of Education: Redefining the Value of School by Neil Postman


Note: I have not yet read all of these myself - - some I have read, some are recommendations to me, and others I've read about online.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Imam Ghazali on Repentance

The weighty words of the Proof of Islam:

"If you repent then break your repentance by returning to sin, then rush back to repentance. Say to yourself, 'Perhaps I will die before returning to sin this time.' Similarly, do this a third and fourth time. Just as you have made sin and returning to it a profession, make repentance and returning to it a profession. Do not be more incapable of repentance than you are of sin, nor lose hope, and do not let the Shaytan use this to prevent you from repenting. For indeed it is a sign of good. Did you not hear his [the Prophet's] (Allah bless and grant him peace) saying, 'The best of you are every one who is often tried and often penitent.' Which means they are often tried by sin and repent much and return to Allah (Transcendent and Exalted is He) with remorse and seeking forgiveness. Remember the saying of Allah (Most high): 'And he who does evil or wrongs himself, then seeks forgiveness from Allah, he will find Allah Very Forgiving, Merciful.'[4:110]" [1]

And Allah knows best and He alone gives success (tawfiq).

[1] Muhammad Bin Muhammad al-Ghazali, Minhaj al-'Abidin Ila Jannah Rabbi al-'Alamin (Damascus, al-Dar al-Dimashqiyyah, 1422 A.H.[2002]), pp.31-32.

Friday, June 09, 2006

Four Keys to the Reality of Faith (Seeker's Digest)

Four Keys to the Reality of Faith (Seeker's Digest)

Sahl ibn Abd Allah al-Tustari said,
“One doesn’t attain unto the reality of faith until one has four traits:
(1) Fulfilling one’s obligations, in accordance with the sunna
(2) Eating the halal, with scrupulousness
(3) Avoiding prohibitions, both outward and inward
(4) Remaining steadfast on this, until one’s death.”

[Ghazali, Ihya `Ulum al-Din, 2.91]

وقال سهل التسترى لا يبلغ
العبد حقيقة الإيمان حتى يكون فيه أربع خصال أداء الفرائض بالسنة وأكل الحلال
بالورع واجتناب النهي من الظاهر و الباطن و الصبر على ذلك إلى الموت

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Sh. Nuh: Recommended Books

Shaykh Nuh recommended some very important books to read tonight...I thought I'd post them here for anyone who may be interested:

Anyone who cares about the future, especially those with children...read!

Free SunniPath Course: The Hadith Jibril Explained

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Monday, June 05, 2006

SunniPath Academy's Summer Intensive Program

More Knowledge - SunniPath Academy's Summer Intensive Program

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Sunday, June 04, 2006

Three Friends

"Know that you have three friends. The first of them is your wealth,
which you shall lose at the time of death. The second of them is your
family, who shall leave you once you are in your grave. The third of
them are your actions, which shall never depart from you. So befriend
that which will accompany you in your grave, and be intimate with it.
The intelligent one is he who knows Allah, His commands and His

-Ibn 'Ata' Allah (Taj al-'arus al-hawi li tahdhib al-nufus, 32).