by Maryam Amir-Ebrahimi

Before I got married, I was given unsolicited advice on how to change in order to make myself “more appealing” to brothers. Sisters would voluntarily tell me I should be more outgoing when with men, dress more attractively to get their attention and stop being as involved with Islamic activism so I would not scare them away.

Since when is our purpose in life marriage? Where in the Qur’an does Allah ask us to change our personalities, dress style and tone down our activism in hopes of getting hitched? Nevertheless, with marriage being such a huge concern in our community, many face the temptation to change their values to find a spouse.

Here’s an idea: Instead of working to please a potential suitor, perhaps we should first seek to please Allah, the One who sows the seed of love in our hearts and can bless us with our dream husband or dream wife.

Instead of looking for marriage at every event, let’s look for marriage in our relationship with al-Wahhab, the Giver of All. Let’s be honest. We are talking about al-Mujeeb, the Responder to Prayer. Those are amongst the Names of Allah! Allah gives and He answers!

If you are an individual who struggles to lower your gaze and protect your eyes, heart, tongue and body from falling into the haram, don’t you know that Allah will indeed reward you?

Every time you glance up and see someone you wish you could be with, turn away and in that moment ask Allah to bless you with a spouse who will be the sweetness of your eyes. Would not Allah listen to and accept your supplication to Him? How could Allah possibly not accept the supplication of His adamant worshipper who is painfully struggling to maintain his or her modesty and guard his or her chastity? The Prophet ﷺ has encouraged us to “Ask and you will be given…” (at-Tirmithi) Allah will give you! How could He not when you are striving only for His Sake?

In those moments in the last third of the night, in those two rakahs which you make out of pure frustration of your situation, weeping, asking Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala – exalted is He) to answer you –  do you not think Allah the Rabb al-`alameen (Lord of the Worlds) will not respond to you? Allahu Akbar (God is the Greatest), this is Allah! Without doubt Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) is going to answer you!

The Prophet ﷺ relates from Allah in a hadith Qudsi:

“Our Lord (glorified and exalted be He) descends each night to the earth’s sky when there remains the final third of the night, and He says: ‘Who is saying a prayer to Me that I may answer it? Who is asking something of Me that I may give it him? Who is asking forgiveness of Me that I may forgive him?’” (Bukhari)

What is hooking up with a brother or sister on gchat or facebook worth in comparison to hooking up with the One who can hook you up?

As Shaykh Muhammad Faqih once said, “Hook up with Allah, Allah will hook you up!”

Let’s hook up with salah! Hook up with the Qur’an! Hook up with community work for Allah’s Sake! And have certainty that when we struggle to please Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala), Ash-Shakoor is the Most Appreciative of our work and will undoubtedly reward us.

Will that reward be in the form of an amazing spouse and an amazing marriage? Allah knows best. But the best part is that Allah knows what is BEST for us and that His bounties are limitless.

The Prophet ﷺ has told us, “Any Muslim who supplicates to Allah in a du`a’ which contains no sin [of] breaking of kinship, Allah will give him one of three things: either hisdu`a’ will be immediately answered, it will be saved for him in the hereafter, or it will turn away an equivalent amount of evil (from him)…” (Ahmad).

Thus, we must know that if we connect with Allah, we can trust that Allah will grant us whatever is best, whether it be an answer to exactly what we are asking for or something better. Allah has got our backs! Who better to trust our future with than the One who already knows it?

Easier said than done? Maybe. But what have you got to lose? If at the end of the day you are only increasing in closeness to Allah, increasing in reading the Qur’an, tasting the sweetness of your salah, and making more sincere du`a’ then insha’Allah (if Allah wills) you will have gained more than simply “a spouse” if you get married and you would have gained much more than facebook “cruising for a spouse” time while you’re attempting to find your better half…Insha’Allah you will gain more in this life and the next, and an unwavering relationship with Allah!

Here are some short, quick and amazing ways we can increase our relationship with Allah through good deeds massively rewarded inshaAllah:

–> Get what you really want: “Allah will grant whoever recites this seven times in the morning or evening whatever he desires from this world or the next” (Ibn As Sunni, Abu Dawood – both reports are directly linked to the Prophet ﷺ):

HasbiaAllahu la ilaha ila huwa `alayhi tawakaltu wa huwa Rabbu’l`arshi’l`atheem.

“Allah is Sufficient for me, none has the right to be worshipped except Him, upon Him I rely and He is Lord of the exalted throne.”

To be recited seven times in the morning (after Fajr) and seven times in the evening (between `Asr and Maghrib).

–> Say “Subhan’Allah” (glory be to Allah) 100 times. For a person who does this, “a thousand good deeds are recorded for him and a thousand bad deeds are wiped away.” [Muslim]

–> Ask Allah to forgive your brothers and sisters: “Whoever seeks forgiveness for believing men and believing woman, Allah will write for him a good deed for each believing man and believing woman.” [at-Tabarani, classed as hasan by al-Albani]

–> Work to protect yourself from the Hellfire: “Allah will spare whoever says this four times in the morning or evening from the fire of Hell” (Abu Dawood, was also reported in Bukhari).

Allahumma inni asbahtu ush-hiduka, wa ushidu hamalata `arshika, wa mala’ikataka, wa jamee`a khalqik, annaka Ant Allah, la ilaha illa Ant, wahdaka la shareeka lak, wa anna Muhammadan `abduka wa rasuluka (when saying this in the evening, say “Allahuma inniamsaytu” instead of “asbahtu.

“O Allah, verily I have reached the morning and call on You, the bearers of Your throne, Your angels, and all of Your creation to witness that You are Allah, none has the right to be worshipped except You, alone, without partner and that Muhammad is Your Servant and Messenger.”

To be recited four times in the morning (after Fajr) and evening (between `Asr and Maghrib).

The Lord of the Worlds speaks to us and tells us, “And when My slaves ask you concerning Me, then I am indeed near. I respond to the invocations of the supplicant when he calls on Me. So let them obey Me and believe in Me, so that they may be led aright” (Quran, 2:186).

You are coming to Allah with rajaa (hope), with a powerful combination of seeking Allah’s pleasure, striving to leave anything which may gain His displeasure and making a consistent effort to ask Him to open the best of ways for you and then putting your trust in Him that He will give you whatever is best. Of course Allah is going to answer you.

As was once stated, “A person has never held certainty in Allah only for Allah to disappoint him/her.’ Never will Allah disappoint those with yaqeen (certainty), tawakkul(reliance) and husn al-dhann (good opinion) of Him.” Hook up with Allah and know that without a doubt, Allah ‘azza wa Jall will hook you up in the best of ways.

Source: http://www.suhaibwebb.com

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The Disease of the Idiots

February 8, 2009

Living many years in Florida, I have to admit, I’ve become quite a bit desensitized to the fitnah that comes into my view.  This is extremely unfortunately because, well, let’s face it, to look at the haraam is still haraam.  Lowering one’s gaze is one of the hardest things to do while living in the West.  I remember when I was living in Egypt, coming in contact with the opposite gender was something that was scarce.  I would come in contact with the opposite gender at like restaurants when ordering food or something similar.  However, in the West, avoiding contact with the opposite gender is nearly impossible .  To help us get past this obstacle I thought I’d share the following quote by a South Asian scholar of the past:

To cast lustful glances is the disease of idiots. You neither give, nor receive. All you do is put your own heart in turmoil. You can stare at a girl forever, but you will never get her. You will only get the person that Allah has decreed for you as halal. Since this is a matter which has already been decided by Allah, that is why this is the disease of idiots

Therefore, let us remember next time we look at a grl (or at a boy if it is a sister looking) that we are indulging in the disease of the idiot.

Islam respects all human needs like sex and food and directs human beings to the right way where they can properly fulfill their needs and desires.

Islam considers sex as one of the essential human needs that must be properly satisfied. It is a necessity of the human being that requires favorable consideration. In fact, Islam considers it one of the requirements of life that should be properly and lawfully satisfied. Moreover, Islam does not treat it as a distasteful, filthy, or heinous act of man.

Allah states in the Glorious Qur’an Surrah Al-Imran [The Family of Imran] (3:14):�Fair in the eyes of men is the love of things they covet: women and sons; heaped-uphoards of gold and silver; horses branded [for blood and excellence]; and [wealth of] cattle and well-tilled land. Such are the possessions of this world’s life; but in nearness to Allah is the best of the goals [to return to]�.

Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) said:

Three items of this world were made attracted [or likeable] to me: women, perfume [but] the [utmost] pleasure of my eyes [soul] is in prayer�.

In fact, Islam prohibits deprivation of the sexual behavior. This is, simply, because Islam is the natural religion commensurate to pure human innate. Islam does not, at any time, interfere with the requirements of the human’s needs or desires. It rather attempts to answer and fulfill all human needs and requirements, yet by setting certain lawful limits and restrictions to ensure satisfying these needs in a right and lawful manner. Islam endeavors to keep the sex within the framework of human needs and elevates it above the savage and uncivilized way.

Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) said:

“People enter Jannah, Paradise mostly based on Taqwa of Allah (respect and fear of Allah) full respect and obedience of the Commands of Allah and His Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him)], and based on their good conduct. [While] most people enter the Hellfire because of the [ill use] of the mouth and private parts�.

Islam sets the mode for the better advancement of man, if he follows the Islamic rules and God’s Commands on the subject. Islam looks at the proper (legal) use of the sex as an act of worship, (Ibadah). A Muslim would be rewarded when he practices this act, as he is rewarded when he does any other acts of worship.

Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) said:

[A Muslim] would have an intercourse with his spouse and would be rewarded for it. The Companions (may Allah be pleased with them) asked: Oh Messenger of Allah! A person would be rewarded while satisfying his sexual need? Prophet Mohammad replied: Yes. Isn’t it that he would be punished had he practiced sex illegally (not with his spouse)? The same applies if a Muslim practiced a lawful intercourse with his spouse. As such, he would be rewarded�.

In Islam, the only way allowed for satisfying the sexual desire is a lawful “marriage”. In fact, Islam urges Muslims to seek marriage.

Islam regards marriage as a natural necessity in order to achieve tranquility and peace of mind for the Muslim. To the society, Islam regards marriage as a place to foster love, affection, closeness. Further, Islam regards marriage as a requirement to maintain the human race. Also Islam regards marriage as a mean for better moral values, preservation of honor and dignity, and preservation of the moral values of the human society. Thus, neglecting marriage or rejecting it is regarded as a denial of all the normal human behaviors and pure code of social ethics”.

Hence, marriage in Islam is a way to reach tranquility and peace of mind.

Allah states in the Qur’an Surrah Al-Room (30:21):

�And among His Signs is that He created for you mates from among yourselves, that you may dwell in tranquility with them, and He has put love and mercy between your [hearts]: verily in that are Signs for those who reflect�.

In fact marriage is essential to protect both spouses against indulgence in unlawful sexual practices that eventually leads to corruption and immoral acts [such as prostitution, fornication and adultery] in the Muslim society.

Prophet Mohammad has stressed that when he said:

There is no greater sin after the sin of associating partners with Allah than a man placing his semen in a womb [private part of a woman] that is unlawful for him to place(having sex with a woman that is not his wife)�.


source:  www.therevival.co.uk via www.islamonline.com

Can Humans Marry Jinn?

July 13, 2007

Like humans, jinn also come from a variety of different religions, ethnicities, regions of the world, etc.  There are Muslim jinn and kaafir jinn.  There are probably Sunni jinn and Shia jinn and Sufi jinn and maybe even desi jinn.  There are good jinn and bad jinn as the Holy Quran states, “There are among us some that are righteous, and some the contrary.  We follow divergent paths” (Translation of the Meaning of the Holy Quran, 72:11).  The jinn themselves live together and procreate as the Holy Quran states, “He was one of the Jinn, and he broke the Command of His Lord.  Will you then take him and his progeny as protectors rather than Me?…” (Translation of the Meaning of the Holy Quran, 18:50) as this verse proves that jinn procreate and have progeny.

However, the question that this post attempts to answer is whether or not humans and jinn can intermarry.  Intercourse is possible between species here.  There is somewhat of a difference of opinion held upon the matter of marriage.  Malik held the opinion that a human male could marry a female jinn but a human female could not marry a male jinn.  Similarly, if a human male was to marry a female jinn, the female jinn would count amongst being one of the four wives the male would be allowed to marry.  Ibn Taymiyyah held the opinion that humans and jinn could intermarry and have children.

Nevertheless, many scholars say marriage between a human and a jinn is not allowed in Islam.  Scholars that say this marriage is impermissible point to the verse, “And among His Signs is this, that He created for you mates among yourselves…” (Translation of the Meaning of the Holy Quran, 30:21).  In this verse, mates among yourselves seems to point to humans being allowed to marry only within humans (and jinn within jinn).  Al-Hasan al-Basri held the opinion that marrying a jinn was possible, yet not permissible in the Shar’iah.  You may ask, what?  It is similar to the idea of a Muslim man wanting to marry a Hindu woman.  It is possible, yet it is not allowed in the Shar’iah.  Nevertheless, even if it is possible to marry a jinn, it comes highly recommended that one try not to pursue it…

Update: Shaykh Bilal Philips was recently asked the question of the permissibility of humans and jinn inter-marrying.  He stated he was of the opinion that it is impermissible.

We, as Muslims, can learn about love from the examples set forth by Rasoolullah (SAW) in how he acted with his wives.  With this post I hope to share some examples of love from the life of our beloved Prophet (SAW).  Women were something beloved to Rasoolullah (SAW) as he said, “Made beloved to me from your world are women and perfume, and the coolness to my eyes is in prayer” (narrated in Ahmad and An-Nisai).  Rasoolullah (SAW) also stated in a hadith found in Sahih Muslim that the most precious object in this world is the pious woman.

Rasoolullah (SAW) always had a playful attitude with his wives.  For example, he (SAW) would call them by nicknames (i.e. he would call Aisha, Aaish).  Furthermore, Rasoolullah (SAW) would even race them sometimes for fun.  Originally Aisha (ra) beat Rasoolullah (SAW) in a foot-race.  Later, after she had gained some weight, Rasoolullah (SAW) would beat her and tease her about it.  When Saoda and Aisha once got into a food-fight, Rasoolullah (SAW) enjoyed the show and laughed about it.  Moreover, when Rasoolullah (SAW) and Aisha would bathe together, they would tease each other about who would be hogging all the water.

Rasoolullah (SAW) would sometimes extend his stay at Zainab’s house because she would give him honey as Rasoolullah (SAW) loved honey.  Aisha and several other wives teamed up to play a practical joke on Rasoolullah (SAW).  When Rasoolullah (SAW) came back from Zainab’s house after eating honey one day, his wives commented on the bad smell coming from his mouth.  Upon this, Rasoolullah (SAW) forbade himself from eating honey anymore.  This led to the revelation: “O Prophet! Why do you ban (for yourself) that which Allâh has made lawful to you, seeking to please your wives? And Allâh is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful. Allâh has already ordained for you (O men), the dissolution of your oaths. And Allâh is your Maula (Lord, or Master, or Protector, etc.) and He is the All-Knower, the All-Wise. And (remember) when the Prophet (Peace be upon him) disclosed a matter in confidence to one of his wives (Hafsah), so when she told it (to another i.e. ‘Aishah), and Allâh made it known to him, he informed part thereof and left a part. Then when he told her (Hafsah) thereof, she said: “Who told you this?” He said: “The All-Knower, the All-Aware (Allâh) has told me”. If you two (wives of the Prophet, namely ‘Aishah and Hafsah) turn in repentance to Allâh, (it will be better for you), your hearts are indeed so inclined (to oppose what the Prophet likes), but if you help one another against him (Muhammad), then verily, Allâh is his Maula (Lord, or Master, or Protector, etc.), and Jibrael (Gabriel), and the righteous among the believers, and furthermore, the angels are his helpers” (Translation of the Meaning of the Holy Quran, 66:1-4).  This incident led Rasoolullah (SAW) to becoming angry with his wives where he decided to abstain from them for a month.  He (SAW) returned to Aisha 29 days later and instead of being pleased upon his return, she asked him why he had returned a day early.

Rasoolullah (SAW) would always make time for his wives.  While Rasoolullah (SAW) was in itikhaf in the masjid, Safiyyah came to visit him (SAW).  Instead of turning her away, Rasoolullah (SAW) listened to her talk until she was content and left.  Once while traveling, Aisha and Safiyyah traded places to play a practical joke on Rasoolullah (SAW).  Not realizing they had changed places, Rasoolullah (SAW) went to talk with who he thought was Aisha.  Instead, Rasoolullah (SAW) ended up spending the night with Safiyyah, which irked Aisha.

In addition to being a good listener, Rasoolullah (SAW) was also very patient and tolerant with his wives.  Aisha (ra) narrated that Rasoolullah (SAW) never abused a domestic worker physically or emotionally and neither did he (SAW) beat any of his wives (narrated in Muslim).  Furthermore, Aisha narrates that Rasoolullah (SAW) would only enjoy his meals when she would sit next to him.  They would drink from one cup and he (SAW) would watch where Aisha would place her lips on the cup so that he (SAW) could place his lips on the exact same position on the cup.  He would eat from a bone after she would eat from it as he would place his mouth where she had eaten.  Rasoolullah (SAW) would also place morsels of food into her mouth and she would do the same for him (narrated in Muslim).

Within his household, Rasoolullah (SAW) showed amazing passion and mercy.  Whenever his daughter, Fatima (ra), would visit the Prophet (SAW), he would take her hand and kiss it.  He (SAW) would have Fatima sit next to him and she would do the same whenever he (SAW) would visit her (narrated in Tirmidhi).  A bedouin once told Rasoolullah (SAW) that he had never kissed his children.  Rasoolullah (SAW) told him to show mercy to them by saying, “Has Allah withdrawn mercy out of your hearts?” (narrated in Bukhari and Muslim).  While carrying his grandchild, Hasan, Rasoolullah (SAW) said, “O Allah, I love him so love him” (narrated in Bukhari and Muslim).  Rasoolullah (SAW) would even carry his granddaughter, Umama, while in prayer (Bukhari).

The death of Rasoolullah (SAW) was very moving.  While on his death-bed with a high fever, Aisha (ra) would recite Quran to Rasoolullah (SAW).  He (SAW) laid in her lap with his head on her chest knowing it was the end.  Aisha’s brother, Abdur-Rahman (ra), walked into the room with his miswak.  Rasoolullah (SAW) saw the miswak and Aisha noticed this.  She asked him if he wanted it and he nodded.  She took Abdur-Rahman’s miswak and with her teeth she moistened its bristles and gave it to him.  Rasoolullah (SAW) then mumbled that he wanted to go to “the Higher Companion.”  He (SAW) went back to Allah (SWT) as his raised his finger and left this world.  Let us all benefit from his beautiful examples in this life.  He (SAW) surely was the best example and a mercy to mankind.

And among His Signs is this, that He created for you mates from among yourselves, that ye may dwell in tranquility with them, and He has put love and mercy between your (hearts): verily in that are Signs for those who reflect” (Translation of the Meaning of the Holy Quran, 30:21).  

Subhana’Allah, people think they are doing themselves a favor by delaying marriage.  This is not the way of Islam.  The second calipha, Umar (ra), said, “Whoever calls you to eschew marriage is calling you to something other than Islam.”  Umar once saw a man who had never married.  Umar said to him, “Nobody abandons marriage except someone who is either impotent or a flagrant sinner.”   

Marriage is something found in the Sunnah of our beloved Rasoolullah (SAW).  Rasoolullah (SAW) said, “I swear by Allah. I am the most God-fearing and devout person among you; nevertheless I fast as well as break my fast, I pray as well as rest, and I marry women. Whoever desires something other than my Sunnah is not from me” (found in Bukhari).   

We can see from this that for us to be amongst those who love Rasoolullah (SAW) and follow his ways, it is a must upon us to also get married.  This is a proof that there is no celibacy in Islam.  In fact, marriage is an obligation and a religious duty in Islam and it is something that should be done to please Allah (SWT).

Not only is marriage an act of worship, but one would also be rewarded for enjoying their marriage. Rasoolullah (SAW) said, “When one of you has relations with his wife, it is an act of charity. None of you spends anything without Allah rewarding you for it, even a morsel of food that you place in your wife’s mouth.”

In a longer hadith, Rasoolullah (SAW) was asked by the Sahaba, “O Rasoolullah, when one of us fulfils his sexual desire will he have some reward for that?” Rasoolullah (SAW) answered, “Do you not think that were he to act upon it unlawfully he would be sinning? Likewise, if he has acted upon it lawfully he will have a reward”  (narrated in Muslim).

Subhana’Allah, one can see how loving and merciful Allah (SWT) is to his slave in that He will reward us for the pleasures we take in this life, insha’Allah.  

If one is able to get married, one should do so as soon as possible as Rasoolullah (SAW) said, “O assembly of young men, whoever among you has the wherewithal to marry should do so, because it helps to lower the gaze and safeguards the chastity of the private parts. Whoever is not able to marry must fast, because fasting diminishes sexual power” (found in Bukhari).

Therefore, if we are unable to get married at this time, it is important for us to fast so that it may help us in lowering our gaze as we have been commanded to do.  When one actively tries to lower his gaze, it really makes an impact on their lives.  We should all implement this important practice (especially including myself).   Those who safeguard their private parts, except before their mates or those whom their right hands possess, for (in their case) they are free from blame” (Translation of the Meaning of the Holy Quran 23:5-6).

Let us complete half of our deen by marrying.  Rasoolullah (SAW) said, “When a man marries, he has fulfilled half of his religion, so let him fear Allah regarding the remaining half.”

Indeed, it is incumbent upon us to search for the righteous sister when we marry.  Abu Hurairah (ra) narrated that Rasoolullah (SAW) said, “A woman is married for four things, i.e., her wealth, her family status, her beauty and her religion. So you should marry the religious woman (otherwise) you will be a loser” (found in Bukhari).  Narrated Abdullah ibn Amr (ra) that Rasoolullah (SAW) said, “The whole world is a provision, and the best object of benefit of the world is the pious woman” (found in Muslim).

Therefore, let us not delay our marriage and may Allah (SWT) grant us all righteous wives and families.  Ameen.  Insha’Allah, I will close with a couple of verses from the Holy Quran:

And Allah has made for you your mates of your own nature, and made for you, out of them, sons and daughters and grandchildren, and provided for you sustenance of the best” (Translation of the Meaning of the Holy Quran, 16:72).

The believers, males and females, are partners of one another; they shall jointly enjoin all that is good and counsel against all that is evil” (Translation of the Meaning of the Holy Quran, 9:71).