Commentary ~ Hope

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

One shouldn’t lose hope in Allah; that is the beginning of the path to safety. If you do not walk this path, know at least where that road begins, and do not say: “I have made mistakes.” Strive to always be on the straight path and nothing crooked will reach you. Righteousness is the stick of the Prophet Moussa (Moses) (peace be upon him), and crookedness is the magic (of Pharaoh’s magicians). When righteousness is manifest, it devours all magic. If you do wrong, you only harm yourself. The damage does not reach Allah. When you become straight, all that is crooked disappears. Never lose hope.

Commentary ~ Eighteen Guidelines

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

Sa’eed bin Musayyib (MAPH) reports that there were eighteen guidelines that Umar Al-Khataab (MAPH) formulated for the people, every one of which is replete with wisdom. He said:

  • When someone disobeys Allah in a matter that impacts on you, you can give him no punishment worse than obeying Allah in matters that impact on him.
  • Always assume the best about your brother unless you learn something about him that you absolutely cannot reconcile.
  • Never assume the worst about any statement that a Muslim makes as long as you are able to make a favourable interpretation.
  • The person who exposes himself to slander must never rebuke anyone who holds a bad opinion of him.
  • Whoever guards his secrets will retain the choice in his hands.
  • Ensure that you keep true friends to stay under their wings because they are a source of beauty during times of prosperity and a means of protection during times of hardship.
  • Always speak the truth even though it leads to your death.
  • Never delve into matters that do not concern you.
  • Do not ask about matters that have not occurred because that which has already taken place is enough to preoccupy you from that which has not.
  • Never seek your needs from one who does not want to see your success.
  • Never treat false oaths lightly because Allah will then destroy you.
  • Never keep the company of the sinners to learn from their sinful ways.
  • Keep away from your enemy.
  • Beware even of your friends, except for the trustworthy one and none can be trustworthy unless he fears Allah.
  • Be humble when in the graveyard.
  • Be humble when submiting to Allah’s commands.
  • Seek Allah’s protection at the time of disobeying His commands.
  • In your affairs, consult with those who fear Allah because Allah says:
  • …It is only those who have knowledge among His slaves that fear Allâh… (Sura 35.28)

(Khateeb, Ibn Asaakir and Ibn Najjaar, as quoted in Kanzul Ummaal (Vol. 8 Page 235))

MAPH: May Allah be pleased with him

The Lives of the Sahaba (Hayat-Assahaba)
By Muhammad Yusuf Kandhelwi – Volume III
Translation Edited by Azfal Hoosen Elias
Editor: Zam Zam Publishers
Page 508

Commentary ~ Futility

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

Sentence of Imam Ali (may Allah be pleased with him):

We recognize the futility of someone in that he talks a lot about things that do not concern him and in that he informs about things about which he was not asked.

Commentary ~ The True Believer

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

Yahya ben Mo’âz, who died in the year 258 (871-872), said: “…I find it strange the people who avoid eating unhealthy things for fear of getting sick, and who, never abstaining from sin, do not shelter their person from the punishment of the Lord most high. There are three kinds of intelligent people: those who abandon this world before this world abandons them; those who build their grave before entering it, and those who strive to please the Lord most high before arriving at His Court. Whosoever practices moderation of the desires of the heart will see their heart flooded with light. (…) The knowledgeable is he who prefers above all the glorification of the Name of Allah. In whose heart that person has the fear of the Lord most high, his whole being longs to be worshiping and stays away from sin. Every thing has its kind of beauty: the beauty of the acts of worship, is fear (taqwa).”

Commentary ~ Then his Heart Dies

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

Umar Ibn Al-Khattaab (MAPH) once said to Al-Ahnaf Ibn Qais (MAPH):

“O Ahnaf, the more one laughs, the less dignity will he possess. Whoever jokes (excessively or indecently) is a person who will be taken lightly. Whoever does something frequently will become known by that thing. Whoever speaks often, errs often; the more often one errs, the less modesty will he possess; whoever has a low level of modesty will also have a low level of piety (Taqwa); and when one has a low level of piety, then his heart dies.”

MAPH: May Allah be pleased with him

Glimpses Of The Lives Of Righteous People,
Darussalam publishing, Pp. 24-25,
Quoting from “Sifatus-Safwah”, 1/1449

Commentary ~ Charity that is given in secret

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

Rabi bin Khuthaim said: “All that is desired not for Allah, but for something or someone else, perishes.”

Abu-Hamzah Ath-Thumali said: “Ali bin Husain used to carry loaves of bread on his back during the nighttime, to give them in charity. And he would say: ‘Indeed, charity that is given in secret extinguishes the anger of the Lord.'”

Amr bin Thabit said: “When Ali bin Husain died, they washed him and found black stains on his back. They asked: ‘What is this?’ And they were told: ‘He used to carry sacks of wheat during the nighttime on his back, and he would distribute them to the poor inhabitants of Al-Madinah.'”

Gems and Jewels
Compiled by: Abdul-Malik Mujahid
Publisher: Maktaba Dar-us-Salam
ISBN: 9960-897-59-1

Commentary ~ Qutaibah and His Prisoner

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

Abu ‘Ubaidah relates that a number of people were presented to Al-Hajjaj; they were all accused of rebelling against him, and so he ordered that they all be executed. Because the time of prayer had arrived, there remained one from them who was still not executed. Al-Hajjaj said to Qutaibah bin Muslim, “He shall remain with you and you will bring him to us early tomorrow.”

Qutaibah said: I went and took the man with me, and as we were on our way, he said, “Qutaibah, do you wish to do a good deed?” I asked, “And what is that?” He said, “I have things that were trusted to me by people, and your companion, Al-Hajjaj, will surely kill me. Let me go free so that I may return each item to its rightful owner. And Allah is my Guarantor that I will return to you tomorrow.” I was amazed at what he said, and I laughed at him. He then repeated for a second time the same words and said, “By Allah, I will return to you.” He continued and persisted in the same manner, until finally, I said, “Go.” When he left, and when I could no longer see him, I returned to my senses and said: ‘What did you do to yourself, O Qutaibah?’ I returned to my family and spent the night, which seemed to last forever. In the morning, there was a man knocking at our door, and when I went to open it, there stood before me the same man from the day before. I said, “You have returned?” He said, “I made Allah as a Guarantor and then why should I not return?” I took him with me, and when Al-Hajjaj saw me, he said, “Where is the prisoner, Qutaibah?” I said, “He is at the door.” I brought him before the ruler and I informed him of the story. Al-Hajjaj gave him many piercing glances, and then said to me, “I give him to you as a gift.” I left with him and when we had exited from the building, I said to him, “Go wherever you please.” The man raised his head to the sky and said, “O Allah, all praise is for You.” He said nothing more and left.

Gems and Jewels
Compiled by: Abdul-Malik Mujahid
Publisher: Maktaba Dar-us-Salam
ISBN: 9960-897-59-1

Commentary ~ Retribution

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

Allah the Exalted, while promising that the retribution of good and evil will happen on the Day of Judgment, in fact, however, sends a small sample of that retribution here, at every instance and at every moment. If man discovers joy in his heart, he is being rewarded for making someone happy; if he is sad, it is that he has made someone sad. These rewards are presents from the other world and signs of the Day of Retribution, so that we may understand, with so little that which is great. We are being shown from a large warehouse, a small handful of wheat.

So that you know and remember that all discomfort, all darkness, all depressions that befall you, are the bitter fruit of sin and the pain you yourself have caused, even though you do not remember the evil that you have done through negligence, or ignorance, or because of a bad companion with no Iman (faith) who downplayed the sins in your eyes, to the point where you no longer considered them sins. Think of the reward: what is the level of your fulfillment and what is the degree of your depression? Certainly, depression is the punishment of sin and fulfillment is the reward of submission to Allah.

Commentary ~ Nothing is more Precious

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

Nothing, it has been said, is more precious than intelligence used in the service of a good and firm management that itself is nourished by the reverential fear of Allah (Taqwa). There is no good neighborliness without evenness of temper; it is based upon the good education that the behavior of each will be judged; without Divine assistance, there is no success to be expected. Similarly, trade with others only profits where, based on virtue, it aspires for sole compensation the Supreme Reward. There is no better Piety than adherence to the limits set by Islam, there is no better Science than that of reflection; there is no better devotion than fulfilling the obligations of Divine institution; there is no better demonstration of Faith than that which is done in discretion; there is no better merit than humility and no nobility except that which comes with Knowledge. Fair share must be made for what the body feels with, always in mind, the idea of the precariousness of things and of Death.

Commentary ~ A Pious Man

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

A pious man is of unshakable faith. His faith is strong and accompanied by conviction. He yearns for knowledge. He is independent, but moderate. He submits completely to Allah when he prays. He remains noble even when poor. He shows patience in times of difficulty. He always seeks legal (halal) sustenance. He is full of enthusiasm for the straight path. He is careful not to be stingy. He has no reprehensible desires. He controls his anger. Everyone expects him to be good to them, and no one can think he wants to hurt them. He does not speak unkindly. He speaks softly. He does nothing reprehensible. All that he does is desirable. He is calm even in times of disturbance. If he is at ease, he is grateful to Allah. He does not commit a sin for the love of a friend. He does not offend others by insulting or defaming them. He does not harm his neighbor. He suffers difficulties, but others have nothing to fear from him. He strives to obtain salvation in the Afterlife, but he does not harm anybody. If he approaches someone, it is because he has affection and kindness for that person. He doesn’t avoid another person by vanity, nor does he befriend another person to fool him.

Commentary ~ Between two good deeds

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

Mou’awia Ben Qourra reported that Mou’adz Ben Jabal said to his son: “O son! When you do the prayer, make ​​it as if it were your last prayer without any hope that you will make another after it. Know my son, that the believer dies between two good deeds one that he has advanced (completed) and another that he has delayed. “(Abu Na’im).

The Compagnons of the Prophet (Hayat-Assahaba)
By Mouhammad Youssef Al-Kandahlawi – Volume II
Translated by Fawzi Chaaban
Editor: Dar El Fikr – Beyrouth/Liban
Page 339

Commentary ~ Dissatisfaction is a trap of the devil

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

The devil prevails in his subjugation of man most often in two areas: dissatisfaction and desire. In these instances he finds his prey to be extremely vulnerable, particularly when displeasure becomes deep-rooted. At this point, he says, he does, and he thinks that which displeases his Lord. For this explicit reason, the Prophet (SAWS) said upon the death of his son Ibrahim (the Prophet’s (SAWS) son, who the Prophet named Ibrahim and died at a young age):

“The heart is sad, the eye sheds tears, and yet we don’t say anything, except that which pleases our Lord.”

The death of one’s child is something that might lead to resentment in a person’s heart. Hence, the Prophet (SAWS) informed us that, in such a situation, a situation regarding which most people are resentful and which causes them to say or do that which is displeasing to their Lord, they must not say anything except that which pleases their Lord. If one were to keep the following three matters at his fingertips when he is displeased and angry about what has happened to him, then the burden of his calamity will lighten significantly. They are:

  • To know and to believe in the wisdom of Allah, and in the fact that Allah knows best what is good and beneficial for His slaves.
  • To be conscious of the great reward and recompense that Allah promised to the slave who becomes afflicted and is then patient.
  • To know and accept that rulings and judgments are with Allah, while submission and obedience are for His slaves.

Is it they who would portion out the Mercy of your Lord?… (Koran 43.32)

SAWS: May Allah exalt his mention and protect him from imperfection

La Tahzan (Don’t be sad)
By Aaidh ibn Abdullah al-Qarni
Translated by: Faisal ibn Muhammad Shafeeq, 2nd ed. Riyadh 2005
Publisher: International Islamic Publishing House
ISBN Hard Cover: 9960-850-36-6
ISBN Soft Cover: 9960-850-44-7

Commentary ~ The distribution of the Book of Deeds

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

On the Day of Judgement the Book of Deeds will be handed out. The manner in which this happens is that the Books of Deeds will be thrown in the air from a high elevation. Mankind is below, and these books will be thrown from above. At that moment when you see your book coming down and you don’t know if it is going to land in the right hand or the left hand (if it is in the right hand that is a good sign, if it lands in the left hand that is a bad sign) and you know that this is the record of your life upon which you will be judged is one of the moments when the Messenger of Allah (SAWS) says “the hair turns gray”. It is a very difficult and extremely critical moment. Allah (The Exalted) says:

That Day shall you be brought to Judgement, not a secret of you will be hidden. Then as for him who will be given his Record in his right hand will say: “Take, read my Record! “Surely, I did believe that I shall meet my Account!” So he shall be in a life, well-pleasing. In a lofty Paradise, The fruits in bunches whereof will be low and near at hand. Eat and drink at ease for that which you have sent on before you in days past! (Koran 69.18-24)

That person who receives the Book of Deeds in the right hand says: “Take, read my Record!” That person is willing to show it to everyone. That person is happy and proud. That person understood his/her account would reach them. “Surely, I did believe that I shall meet my Account!” I knew that this day will come. That person will be in a life of bliss. Notice here that Allah is talking about fruits that are low and Allah says “Eat and drink at ease.” It is a very appropriate moment to say “Eat and drink” because at that moment on the Day of Judgement hunger and thirst are at the extreme limits. So the Book will be given and that person will be told that soon you will enter into Jannah (Paradise) and you will eat and drink as you like. Because of the long waiting on the Day of Judgement and extreme hunger and thirst, there is a special value for being told that you will eat and drink for what you did in the days before. This is a very important point; it depends on what you did in the days before. The past will be what you will be held accountable “for that which you have sent on before you in days past!”

Now what about the one who receives the Book in the left hand?

But as for him who will be given his Record in his left hand, will say: “I wish that I had not been given my Record! “And that I had never known, how my Account is? “I wish, would that it had been my end (death)! “My wealth has not availed me, “My power and arguments (to defend myself) have gone from me!” (It will be said): “Seize him and fetter him, Then throw him in the blazing Fire. “Then fasten him with a chain whereof the length is seventy cubits!” Verily, He used not to believe in Allâh, the Most Great, And urged not on the feeding of Al­Miskîn (the poor), So no friend has he here this Day, Nor any food except filth from the washing of wounds, None will eat except the Khâti’ûn (sinners, disbelievers, polytheists, etc.). (Koran 69.25-37)

This person may have loved life so much but on the Day of Judgement they are saying “I wish I was dead now, I wish I had never existed, and of no profit to me has been my wealth and my power they have perished from me”. My wealth didn’t do me any good and my power did not help me. The two things that we strive and struggle for in dounia, power and wealth on the Day of Judgement they will say it is no good. Money buys you whatever you want in dounia. You could buy a house, buy a fancy car, buy the best food; you could go wherever you want, and so it is a tool that gets you what you want. It fulfills your desire, that’s what money does. On the Day of Judgement money will not buy you anything. Money will not get you anything. It is worthless. Hundred dollar bills are pieces of paper they have no value. Therefore what was wealth one day is now nothing. So the person will say: “My wealth is not doing me any good. That wealth that I worked years and years to acquire now when I need it is worthless. I need to buy happiness now but it is not there for me anymore”. Power is the same thing. Power gives you dominance and opens for you doors of opportunity. When you have power you do whatever you want. On the day of Judgement, the person will be powerless. They will be at the lowest levels, because that person on the Day of Judgement will not even have power over their own limbs. Your hand will speak against you. Your tongue will speak against you. Your feet will speak against you. So you are powerless, you do not even have command over your own body. That person will say: “Why was I fighting for power? I killed people for power, I abused people for power, where is it now? I do not even have command over my own self”. Therefore power and wealth are of no value on the Day of Judgement and we need to realize this right now. If we acquire wealth we acquire it for the sake of Allah, if we acquire power we acquire it for the sake of Allah, not for ourselves.

May Allah let the Book of Deeds land in our right hands on the Day of Judgement. Ameen.

Commentary ~ Free the slaves

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

Hassan al-Basri was one of the Tabi’en (second generation after the Companions RA). Once, after giving the Friday sermon a group of slaves came to him and said, “Shaykh please, next week, give a speech about freeing the slaves!” Hassan agreed and next week there, waiting anxiously, were the slaves. Hassan ascended the pulpit. His speech moved hearts and brought tears to dry eyes, but he failed to mention anything about freeing slaves? The slaves thought to themselves that the Shaykh must have forgot, thus, once again, the following week they took the 50 yard line seats and waited hoping soon to be free. However, the Shaykh failed to mention anything again? After a number of weeks the slaves were sure that the Shaykh sold them out, gotten cold feet and they began to hold the Shaykh in contempt.

One year passed and the tired slaves entered the Masjid of the Shaykh. They had long since forgotten their request and were taken aback, when suddenly he began to mention the conditions of slaves and the importance of freeing them! Their faces looked like bright lamps as the Shaykh encouraged all to free their slaves in exchange for Allah’s mercy and pleasure.

After the sermon the slaves were freed and they ran to the Shaykh asking why he waited one year to give the speech. Hassan al-Basri responded: “At the time you ask me to give the speech I readily agreed. However, after you left I realised that I had no slave of my own. Being a poor man I had to save some money for around one year’s time in order to purchase a slave. Today, alhumdulillah! I was able to purchase a slave. After I purchased him I went to the market and freed him. Finally, I went to the Masjid and gave my sermon.” Looking baffled the freed men asked, “But why? Why did you go to all this trouble?” The Shaykh responded, “If I gave that speech a year ago I would have been encouraging the people to do something that I had not done. Thus, I decided to wait until I freed a slave so that my actions and words would be equal.”

Commentary ~ The moment of death had arrived

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

It was 4 in the morning when the moment of death had arrived.
What is this? The man in a state of shock cried.
The man started to tremble suddenly shaken,
To his sleeping wife he cried out don’t let my soul be taken.

I want to live; I am not yet ready to leave,
My family is dependent on me, can there be no reprieve?

With the order of Allah there is no delay,
Prepare yourself for the grave there is nothing to say.
Why do you fear to die by the Will of Allah?
Come; be content to return to your Lord Allah.

I am ashamed that I never had the time to remember my Lord,
Forgetting this moment, I preferred piling riches into a hoard.
The orders of Allah, I did not obey,
Five times a day I never did pray.
Every year, Ramadan came and Ramadan went,
I never had the time or the will to repent.
The Hajj on me had become an obligation,
But spending of my money was too much of a tribulation.
I ignored giving Zakat and charity taken from my possessions,
But loved giving and taking forbidden interest it was an obsession.
I forgot all my religious duties and obligations,
Being fearful of my company’s managers, bosses and administration.
Of my Faith I felt a hidden shame,
At all times fearful of the disbelievers blame.
The distress of the Muslims always bored me a lot,
Instead the artifices of this world were all that I sought.
I imitated the disbelievers in all of their actions,
Drinking wine and champagne was just one of my distractions,
Not to mention the women, those were always an attraction.
O woe on to me I was really astray,
Can there not be even a little delay?

As you well know, this is your last moment of life,
Every soul will taste death even if you cry, plead or feel strife.
Your parents you neglected time and time again,
You pushed away the hungry and the weak who never were your friends.
Your daughters sang and danced in clubs of the night,
While your sons got lost and trapped with women of vice.
Instead of procreating righteous children as Muslim believers,
You have raised your children instead as ignoble disbelievers,
So rich with wealth and material goods,
But oh so poor with what really would do them some good.
You always ignored the call to the Prayer,
The Koran to you was unknown, a complete stranger.
You never kept your promises, at all times fighting,
Your favourite weapon was defamation and back-biting.
You under-paid your employees whom you targeted,
While from the fruits of their labour you harvested.
Never shared of your wealth with the poor and the orphan,
While running away from the sick with great aversion.

I know, I know, I feel very ashamed.
I have a deep regret and feel very pained.
If I had signs of this imminent death,
I would have changed before my last breath.

O miserable soul, your Creator has provided all the signs that you need,
To believe in Allah, His Angels, His Books, and His Messengers and to do good deeds.
But to Allah’s Signs you were blind and you were deaf.
The signs there were many for those who reflect,
Your only concern was confined to this passing life.
Since the Koran you have ignored,
Know that it was said by your Lord,
The life of this world is but play and a pastime,
That is nothing compared to what lies in the Hereafter.
You ignored the warnings in the Koran as a traitor,
You will now be returned to your Creator.

The man’s face was now frozen in its deathly slumber.
His body couldn’t express the pain of the soul, leaving the body in a tumble.
Life, at times, does have its surprises, but never death. Why?
Because everybody knows that we are born and that one day we will die.

Commentary ~ Today is all you have

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

When you wake up in the morning, do not expect to see the evening — live as though today is all you have. Yesterday has passed with its good and evil, while tomorrow has not yet arrived. Your life’s span is but one day, as if you were born in it and will die at the end of it. With this attitude, you will not be caught between an obsession over the past, with its anxieties, and the hopes of the future, with all its uncertainty. Live for today: During this day you should pray with a wakeful heart, recite the Quran with understanding, and remember Allah with sincerity. In this day you should be balanced in your affairs, satisfied with your allotted portion, concerned with your appearance and health.

Organize the hours of this day, so that you make years out of minutes and months out of seconds. Seek forgiveness from your Lord, remember Him, prepare for the final parting from this world, and live today happily and at peace. Be content with your sustenance, your wife, your children, your work, your house and your station in life.

…So hold that which I have given you and be grateful. (Quran 7:144)

Live today free from sorrow, bother, anger, jealousy, and malice.

You must engrave onto your heart one phrase: Today is my only day. If you have eaten warm, fresh bread today, then what do yesterday’s dry, rotten bread and tomorrow’s anticipated bread matter?

If you are truthful with yourself and have a firm, solid resolve, you will undoubtedly convince yourself of the following: Today is my last day to live. When you achieve this attitude, you will profit from every moment of your day, by developing your personality, expanding your abilities, and purifying your deeds. Then you say to yourself:

Today I shall be refined in my speech and will utter neither evil speech nor obscenity. Also, I shall not backbite.

Today I shall organize my house and my office. They will not be disorderly and chaotic, but organized and neat.

Today I will be particular about my bodily cleanliness and appearance. I will be meticulous in my neatness and balanced in my walk, talk, and actions.

Today I will strive to be obedient to my Lord, pray in the best manner possible, do more voluntary acts of righteousness, recite the Qur’an, and read beneficial books. I will plant goodness into my heart and extract from it the roots of evil — such as pride, jealousy, and hypocrisy.

Today I will try to help others — to visit the sick, to attend a funeral, to guide the one who is lost, and to feed the hungry. I will stand side by side with the oppressed and the weak. I will pay respect to the scholar, be merciful to the young, and reverent to the old.

O’ past that has departed and is gone, I will not cry over you. You will not see me remembering you, not even for a moment, because you have traveled away from me never to return.

O’ future, you are in the realm of the unseen, so I will not be obsessed by your dreams. I will not be preoccupied about what is to come because tomorrow is nothing and has not yet been created.

« Today is my only day » is one of the most important statements in the dictionary of happiness, for those who desire to live life in its fullest splendour and brilliance.

La Tahzan (Don’t be sad)
By Aaidh ibn Abdullah al-Qarni
Translated by: Faisal ibn Muhammad Shafeeq, 2nd ed. Riyadh 2005
Publisher: International Islamic Publishing House
ISBN Hard Cover: 9960-850-36-6
ISBN Soft Cover: 9960-850-44-7

Commentary ~ Allah is Most Kind to His slaves

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

A high-ranking member of the Riyadh community related to me that in 1376 Hijri, a group of fishermen from the town of Jubayl set out for the ocean, and after spending three days and three nights fishing, they did not manage to catch even a single fish. Meanwhile, a group of nearby fishermen caught many fish. They were surprised, not merely from the disparity between their failure and the other group’s success, but because they were performing the five daily prayers and failed while the other group was not praying and succeeded. One of them said, “How perfect is Allah! We prayed to Allah every single prayer and we didn’t get anything; the other group did not prostrate to Allah even once over the last few days and look at all they managed to get!” In this way, the Shaytaan (Devil) whispered evil suggestions to them and advised them to abandon the prayer. The next morning, they did not wake up for Fajr (the Morning Prayer). They also neglected to perform the Dhuhr (Noon) and Asr (Afternoon) Prayers. Before nightfall, they set out for the ocean; they caught a fish and upon slitting it open they found a pearl in its stomach — a very expensive pearl. One of them took the pearl in his hand, stared at it, and said, after reflecting, “How perfect is Allah! When we obeyed Him we got nothing, and when we disobeyed Him this is what we got! Indeed, this sustenance before us is of a doubtful nature.” Then he took hold of the pearl and hurled it into the ocean, saying immediately afterwards, “Allah will recompense us with better than this. By Allah, I will not take it, for we acquired it after abandoning the prayer. Come with me, and let us leave this place wherein we disobeyed Allah.” They traveled three miles before camping for the night. Shortly afterwards they went fishing again, and they caught a fair-sized fish. When they slit it open, they found the same valuable pearl inside its stomach. They said, “All praise is due to Allah, Who has provided us with good sustenance.” They caught the fish after praying, remembering Allah, and asking for His forgiveness, so this time they kept it.

You should notice one important difference: the object was one and the same, but it was filthy when they acquired it while they were disobeying Allah, and it was pure when they acquired it while obeying Him.

Would that they were contented with what Allâh and His Messenger gave them and had said: “Allâh is Sufficient for us. Allâh will give us of His Bounty, and (also) His Messenger (from alms, etc.). We implore Allâh (to enrich us).” (Quran 9:59)

Verily, it is Allah’s kindness. So whenever somebody abandons something for Allah, Allah provides him with something that is better.

This reminds me of a story of Ali (may Allah be pleased with him). One morning, he entered Masjid al-Koofa to pray two voluntary units of prayer. Before entering, he found a boy standing at the door. He said to him. “O boy, restrain for me my mule until I finish praying.” As Ali was entering the Mosque, he made an intention to reward the boy with a dirham for his services. Meanwhile, the boy removed the noseband from the mule and rushed off to the marketplace to sell it. When Ali came out of the Masjid, he found no boy, but only his mule without its noseband. He commissioned a man to go after the boy and ordered him to go to the marketplace since it was more than likely that the boy would go there to sell the noseband. The man found the boy auctioning it in the market and he bought it from him for a dirham. He returned to Ali and informed him of what happened. After hearing what occurred, Ali said, “How perfect Allah is! By Allah, I intended to give him a lawful dirham, but he refused to take it other than in an unlawful way.”

Whatever you may be doing, and whatever portion you may be reciting from the Qur’ân, – and whatever deed you (mankind) may be doing (good or evil), We are Witness thereof, when you are doing it. And nothing is hidden from your Lord (so much as) the weight of an atom on the earth or in the heaven. Not what is less than that or what is greater than that but is (written) in a Clear Record. (Quran 10:61)

La Tahzan (Don’t be sad)
By Aaidh ibn Abdullah al-Qarni
Translated by: Faisal ibn Muhammad Shafeeq, 2nd ed. Riyadh 2005
Publisher: International Islamic Publishing House
ISBN Hard Cover: 9960-850-36-6
ISBN Soft Cover: 9960-850-44-7

Commentary ~ Why have you come here?

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

During the reign of the just Khalifah Umar Ibn Al Khattab (RadiAllahu Anhu), one of the many battles that ensued was the wars against the Persian Empire.

One of the great military commanders and heroes of the Muslim armies, Saad Ibn Abi Waqqas (RadiAllahu Anhu), sent one of his messengers to meet with Roostum, the leader of the Persian army. That man was Rabi Ibn Aamir (RadiAllahu Anhu).

Rabi Ibn Aamir (RadiAllahu Anhu) was a very poor man, who came riding to see Roostum on a short legged, hairy horse. His sword was wrapped in an old piece of cloth, as he could not even afford a proper sheath for it. In fact his whole attire was very modest, humble and inexpensive.

The Persians, having received word that a representative of the Muslim general was coming to meet them, prepared for this meeting as they would according to their custom. Rich and luxurious carpets were laid out. Heavily embellished cushions and rugs were spread, rich brocades and robes. Royal guards stood to attention in the court of Roostum, along with his advisors and delegates. It was indeed the proper preparation for such a high level meeting as was customary for the Romans and the Persians.

What they envisioned from the representative of the Muslims was that he would come in a similar fashion. What actually happened was not what the Persians expected.

Rabi Ibn Aamir (RadiAllahu Anhu) comes straight into the hall, without permission, onto the rugs and carpets while still mounted on his horse. The delegates cry out and try to stop him, but he ignores them and carries on. He then dismounts, with his weapons at which point the Persian guards try to stop him. They tell him that he is not to enter with his weapons. So he replies to them:

“Well, you are the ones who invited me. So you either let me in, with my arms, or I am going to leave.”

The guards are told by Roostum to allow him to enter, so Rabi Ibn Aamir (RadiAllahu Anhu) strides forward, with his weapon blades poking holes into the rugs as he walks over them, leaving gashes and marks upon them.

Roostum asked, “Why have you (The Muslims) come here (Persia)?”

This poor Bedouin Muslim replied with the following, timeless and enthralling words:

“Allah the Most Glorious the Most High has sent us, to deliver you, from worshipping the creation, to worshipping the Creator of the creation; and deliver you from the constriction of this world, to the vastness of this world and the Afterlife; and from the oppression of religions to the justice of Islam.”

The effect of his words, on the laymen people surrounding Roostum, was deep and profound.

Rabi Ibn Aamir (RadiAllahu Anhu) was saying that we (The Muslims) have come to remove your people from being the slaves of each other to being the slaves of the Lord of the Universe and all Creation. To remove you from servitude of this human king (you are all sitting on the floor and he is sitting on a throne), to serving the One whose Throne extends across the Heavens and the Earth.

Commentary ~ A Manifestation of Justice

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

It has been related that one of the sons of ‘Amr bin Al-‘As (May Allah be satisfied with him), the governor of Egypt, struck a young Christian Egyptian with his whip. This young Egyptian complained to the Leader of the Believers, ‘Umar ibn Al Khattab (May Allah be satisfied with him), who in turn wrote to the governor and asked his immediate presence along with his son. ‘Umar also invited the young man who had been stricken. When they all gathered in Umar’s chamber where he issued rulings, Amr’s son admitted that he had wronged the young man. The Leader of the Believers handed his whip to the Christian boy and said to him, “Strike this son of the most noble!” The boy raised his whip and struck the son of the governor. ‘Umar said, “Strike Amr’s forehead as well.” The boy responded, “O Leader of the Believers, I have already stricken the one that struck me.” ‘Umar said, “By Allah, had you stricken him, I would not have prevented you, for this son of ‘Amr only hit you under the authority of his father.” Turning to ‘Amr, ‘Umar related a renowned saying to him: “When have you taken people for slaves, when their mothers have borne them as ones that are free?”

Gems and Jewels
Compiled by: Abdul-Malik Mujahid
Publisher: Maktaba Dar-us-Salam
ISBN: 9960-897-59-1
Page 52

Commentary ~ A Difficult Predicament Indeed

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

One of our pious predecessors, Thabit bin Nu’man, was hungry and tired as he was passing through a garden that bordered a river. He was so hungry that he could hear his stomach growling, and so his eyes became fixated on the fruits he saw on the various trees of the garden. In a fit of desperation, he forgot himself and extended his hand to an apple that was within reach. He ate half of it and then drank water from the river. But then he became overcome by guilt, despite the fact that he had only eaten because of dire need. He said to himself, “Woe unto me! How can I eat someone else’s fruits without his permission? I make it binding upon myself to not leave this place until I find the owner of this garden and ask him to forgive me for having eaten one of his apples.” After a brief search, he found the owner’s house. He knocked on the door, and the owner of the garden came out and asked him what he wanted.

Thabit bin Nu’man said, “I entered your garden that borders the river, and I took this apple and ate half of it. Then I remembered that it does not belong to me, and so I ask you now to excuse me for having eaten it and to forgive me for my mistake.” The man said, “On one condition only will I forgive you for your mistake.” Thabit bin Nu’man asked, “And what is that condition?” He said, “That you marry my daughter.” Thabit said, “I will marry her.” The man said, “But heed you this: indeed my daughter is blind, she does not see; mute, she does not speak; deaf, she does not hear.” Thabit began to ponder over his situation; a difficult predicament indeed did he find himself to be in now; what should he do? Not get out of it, thought Thabit, for he realized that to be tested by such a woman, to take care of her, and to serve her, are all better than to eat from the foul matter of the Hellfire as a reward for the apple that he ate. And after all, the days of this world are few and limited.

And so he accepted the condition to marry the girl, seeking his reward from Allah, Lord of all that exists. He was nonetheless somewhat anxious in the days prior to the marriage. He thought, “How can I have relations with a woman who neither speaks nor sees nor hears?” So miserable did he become that he almost wished for the earth to swallow him up before the appointed date. Yet despite such apprehensions, he placed his complete trust upon Allah, and he said, “There is neither nor power except with Allah. Indeed to Allah do we belong, and to Him do we return.” On the day of his marriage, he saw her for the first time. She stood up before him and said, “Peace be upon you, and the mercy and blessings of Allah.” When he saw her grace and beauty, he was reminded of what he would see when he would imagine the fair maidens of Paradise. After a brief pause, he said, “What is this? She indeed speaks, hears, and sees.” He then told her what her father had said earlier. She said, “My father has spoken the truth. He said I was a mute because I do not speak any forbidden word, and I have never spoken to a man who is not lawful to me. And I am indeed deaf in the sense that I have never sat in a gathering in which there is backbiting, slander, or false and vain speech. And I am blind in the sense that I have never looked upon a man who is not permissible for me.”

Noble reader, reflect on and learn a lesson from the story of this pious man and this pious woman and of how Allah brought them together. The fruit of this noble marriage was the birth of a child who grew up to fill the earth with knowledge; yes, their son was Imam Abu Hanifah An-Nu’man, may Allah have mercy on him.

Gems and Jewels
Compiled by: Abdul-Malik Mujahid
Publisher: Maktaba Dar-us-Salam
ISBN: 9960-897-59-1
Page 261

Commentary ~ Love of Allah

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

Ibn Qayyim (may Allah have mercy on him) said that there are ten things that bring about the love of Allah:

1) Recitation of the Quran with reflection and with understanding of its meanings.

2) Seeking closeness to Allah by performing voluntary deeds after having performed obligatory ones, for that leads one to the highest levels of love.

3) Remembering Allah during every situation – with one’s time, heart and deeds… one’s share of that love is to the degree of one’s share in that remembrance.

4) Preferring what He loves to what you love when your desires are strong.

5) Allowing your heart to reflect on His Names and Attributes.

6) Reflecting on His many favors and blessings, both the apparent ones and hidden ones, for that leads to His love.

7) Having your heart softened as it is worshipping Allah.

8) Being alone with Him in worship when He descends during the last third of the night. And this means to invoke Him, to recite His Speech, to stand with all sincerity and with good manners and with good submission, and to end that with repentance and with seeking His forgiveness.

9) Sitting with those who are truthful in their love of Allah.

10) Staying away from all that creates barriers between the heart and Allah.

Gems and Jewels
Compiled by: Abdul-Malik Mujahid
Publisher: Maktaba Dar-us-Salam
ISBN: 9960-897-59-1
Page 22

Commentary ~ Magnanimity

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

Ar-Rabi’atur-Raiy said, “Magnanimity consists of six characteristics: 3 as regards to when one is at home, and 3 as regards to when one is on a journey. As for when one is on a journey – spending from one’s provisions, good manners, and pleasantry with one’s companions. As for when one is at home – recitation of the Quran, adhering to the mosques, and chastity of one’s private parts. ‘Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) said, “There are two kinds of magnanimity: the outward kind and the inward kind. The outward kind is maintaining a good appearance, and the inward kind is chastity.”

Gems and Jewels
Compiled by: Abdul-Malik Mujahid
Publisher: Maktaba Dar-us-Salam
ISBN: 9960-897-59-1
Page 140

Commentary ~ Allah was indeed Pleased with Their Deed!

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

A man went to the Prophet (SAWS) and said, “O Messenger of Allah! Indeed I am extremely hungry.” The Prophet (SAWS) sent a message to one of his wives, asking, “Do you have any food with you?” She said, “No, by the One Who has sent you with the truth, all I have with me is water!” He then sent messages to all of his wives, asking the same question, and the answer of each one of them was, “No, by the One Who has sent you the truth, all we have with us is water.” Allah’s Messenger (SAWS) said to his Companions: “Who will be a host tonight, may Allah have mercy on him?” A man from the Helpers (the Ansar) called Abu Talhah (may Allah be pleased with him) stood and said, “I, O Messenger of Allah.”

He went to his house and asked his wife, “Do you have any food with you?” She said, “All I have with me is a little bit of food for our children.” He said, “Give excuses to them, and try to make them go to sleep! And when our guest comes, make him think we are also eating as he puts his hand forward to eat. Then go to the lamp and pretend that you are fixing it, but instead put it out. And give him the impression that we are eating, so that our guest eats and fills himself.”

She did what her husband asked her to do: she made her children sleep hungry, she placed the food before the guest, she stood to turn the lamp off – but she was giving the impression of simply adjusting the lamp. Then she sat with her husband and with the guest for the meal. They sat idle as the guest ate.

On the following day, he went to Allah’s Messenger (SAWS), who said to him: “Tonight Allah laughed, or wondered at your action.” And then the following Verse was revealed:

“And give them preference over themselves, even though they were in need of that.” (Quran 59:9)

SAWS: May Allah exalt his mention and protect him from imperfection

Gems and Jewels
Compiled by: Abdul-Malik Mujahid
Publisher: Maktaba Dar-us-Salam
ISBN: 9960-897-59-1
Page 108

Commentary ~ Do not attach Your Heart to Other than Allah

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

Imam Ibn Taimiyyah (may Allah have mercy on him) said: “Anyone whose heart is attached to the creation, hoping for someone from the creation to help him or provide for him or guide him, then his heart submits to them and to the degree that his heart submits to them he becomes their slave. This holds true, even if he is outwardly a ruler or a guardian over those whom he treats as masters. The wise one looks at realities and not at appearances. So if a man’s heart is attached to his wife, even though that is permissible, his heart remains a prisoner to her, and she may rule over him as she pleases – though outwardly he is her master and her husband. In reality, he is her prisoner and her slave, especially if she knows how much he is in need of her and how much he is in love with her and how much he feels that she cannot be replaced by anyone else. At that point, she rules over him as the tyrant master rules over his subjugated slave, who cannot escape or go free. Indeed for the heart to be taken as a prisoner is a much greater matter than for the body to be taken as a slave or prisoner. Even a body that is a slave can have in it a serene and peaceful and happy heart. As for the heart that is slave to other than Allah (the Exalted), then that is true humiliation, imprisonment and slavery.

Gems and Jewels
Compiled by: Abdul-Malik Mujahid
Publisher: Maktaba Dar-us-Salam
ISBN: 9960-897-59-1
Page 195

Commentary ~ Our Pious Predecessors and Their Dutifulness to Their Parents

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

Muhammad bin Sirin related that the price of a date-palm tree was as high as 1000 dirhams during the period of ‘Uthman bin ‘Affan (may Allah be pleased with him). Once during that period, Usamah went to a date-palm tree that belonged to him, pierced it, and took out its palm pirth. Then he went and gave it to his mother to eat. People said to him, “What made you do this when you know that the price of a date-palm tree has reached 1000 dirhams?” He said, “My mother asked me for it (for the palm pirth), and she has never asked me for anything that I was able to give her except that I gave it to her.”

Gems and Jewels
Compiled by: Abdul-Malik Mujahid
Publisher: Maktaba Dar-us-Salam
ISBN: 9960-897-59-1
Page 172

Commentary ~ Sudden Death

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

There have been many incidents in which people suddenly die in circumstances that portend evil; such cases have often been witnessed by the righteous, whose Faith increased in consequence, thus making them more prepared for the Hereafter. For example, Ibn Rajab related from ‘Abdul-Aziz bin Abi Rawwad, who said,

“I was with a man who was dying and who was being prompted to say the Shahadah: None has the right to be worshipped but Allah (and Mohamed is the the Messenger of Allah). His last words were, ‘He is a disbeliever by what you say.’ I asked about him and found out that he was an alcoholic.”

‘Abdul-Aziz said,

“Protect yourselves from sins, for it were sins that were his ruin.”

Qurtubi related from Rabi’ bin Sabrah bin Ma’bad Al-Juhani, a pious person from Basrah:

“I met people from Sham, who reported that it was said to a man who was dying, ‘Say: None has the right to be worshipped but Allah.’ And his response was, ‘I drink (alcohol), so give me something to drink.'”

And Ibn Qayyim related in Al-Jawab Al-Kafi,

“It has been said to some of them, ‘Say: None has the right to be worshipped but Allah.’ They answered, ‘Ahh Ahh, I am not able to say it.'”

Gems and Jewels
Compiled by: Abdul-Malik Mujahid
Publisher: Maktaba Dar-us-Salam
ISBN: 9960-897-59-1
Page 95

Commentary ~ The Final Command of the Ruler Muhammad Al-Fateh to His Son

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

Muhammad Al-Fateh, a Muslim ruler during the Ottoman Empire, was known for his knowledge, bravery, justice, piety and humility. He was able to conquer Constantinople when many before him had failed. And at that time he was only 23 years old.

At the end of his life, he advised his son, saying: “Here I am dying, but I am not sorry, for I have left behind one such as you. Be just, righteous, and merciful. Give generously to the people and defend them without distinguishing between them. Spread Islam, for that is compulsory upon the kings of the earth. Give precedence to religion over all things and do not become tired in that pursuit. Do not appoint people who do not care about religion and who do not stay away from major sins, those who have plunged themselves into wickedness and into evil innovations. Expand the borders of our nation through Jihad and watch over the wealth of the treasury, making sure that it is not wasted. Never extend your hand to the wealth of anyone from the people except by the right of Islam. Guarantee the weak for their strength and give freely your generosity to those who deserve it.”

Gems and Jewels
Compiled by: Abdul-Malik Mujahid
Publisher: Maktaba Dar-us-Salam
ISBN: 9960-897-59-1
Page 187

Commentary ~ The Continuation of Your Deeds

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) related that Allah’s Messenger (May Allah exalt his mention and protect him from imperfection) said, “When a person dies, his deeds are cut off except for three: from charity whose benefit continues, knowledge that is benefited by, and a righteous son who supplicates for him.” (Sahih Muslim)

Gems and Jewels
Compiled by: Abdul-Malik Mujahid
Publisher: Maktaba Dar-us-Salam
ISBN: 9960-897-59-1
Page 117

Commentary ~ Choosing a Husband

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

A man asked Hasan bin ‘Ali, “I have a daughter and people have proposed to her, so to whom should I marry her?”

He said, “Marry her to one who fears Allah, for if he loves her, he will honor her; and if he hates her, he will not wrong her.”

Gems and Jewels
Compiled by: Abdul-Malik Mujahid
Publisher: Maktaba Dar-us-Salam
ISBN: 9960-897-59-1
Page 171

Commentary ~ Preserving the Honor of the Muslim

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

One day, ‘Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) left his home with Abdullah bin Mas’ud (may Allah be pleased with him) and during the late hours of the night, they saw the glow of a fire burning at a distance. They followed the light until it led them to a home with a burning lamp. Upon seeing the lamp, ‘Umar entered the house and saw an old man sitting with alcohol in front of him and a female singer entertaining him. The old man was caught off-guard by ‘Umar’s sudden attack when he said to him, “I have not seen a sight more shameful than what I have witnessed tonight from an old man who should be awaiting death.”

The old man responded, “Indeed, O Leader of the Believers, what you have done is more shameful. You have entered my house without my permission and spied on me – and is not spying forbidden in Islam?” ‘Umar admitted to the truth of his statement and left the old man’s house, biting his garment and crying as he said, “May the mother of ‘Umar lose him if Allah does not forgive me.” Thereafter, the old man stopped attending the gatherings of ‘Umar. After some time passed, ‘Umar saw the old man in one of the last rows of his gathering and wished to speak with him. Fearing harshness from ‘Umar, the old man approached him cautiously, being asked to come closer and closer until he was finally seated near the Leader of the Believers. ‘Umar asked to have his ear next to his mouth and said, “By the One Who has sent Prophet Muhammad with the truth, I have not informed anyone of what I saw of you that night, nor have I informed ‘Abullah bin Mas’ud, for indeed he was with me.” The old man replied, “O Leader of the Believers! By the One Who has sent Prophet Muhammad with the truth, I too have not returned to those evil actions since the night you entered upon me.” Umar uttered out loud, “Allahu Akbar!” yet no one from the gathering knew what had occurred between the two men.

Gems and Jewels
Compiled by: Abdul-Malik Mujahid
Publisher: Maktaba Dar-us-Salam
ISBN: 9960-897-59-1
Page 34