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August 16, 2010

Two articles for those who are busy doing itikaf in the kitchen or tawaf around the office

by Umm Muawiyah

Assalamu Alaikum.

[Okay, so the “itikaf in the kitchen” wasn’t my joke (but the “tawaf around the office” was).]

You’re stuck in the kitchen? And you spend your entire Ramadan there?

Or perhaps you’re  stuck in the office? And you spend your entire Ramadan there?

[By “stuck”, I mean “stuck” as in used in the following sentence: “I am stuck in quicksand.”]

I suppose now would be a good time to give you a lecture about not being too obsessed with the dunya (worldy life) but it’s the Month of Mercy, so I’ll spare you and let you read the following two articles so that you can be encouraged and not be discouraged:

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http://islamqa.com/en/ref/65875

How can she make use of her time when she is cooking in Ramadaan?

I would like to know what actions are recommended during this blessed month in order to increase one’s reward, such as dhikrs, acts of worship, and mustahabb actions. I know about Taraweeh prayer, reciting Qur’aan a great deal, seeking forgiveness a great deal and praying at night. But I want to know some words I can repeat during my daily duties such as when I am cooking or doing housework, because I do not want to miss out on the reward.

Praise be to Allaah.

May Allaah reward you with good for this concern and eagerness to do good and righteous deeds during this blessed month.

To the good deeds that you have mentioned may be added charity, feeding the poor, going for ‘Umrah and observing i’tikaaf for those who are able to do so.

As for the words that you can repeat whilst you are working, these include tasbeeh (saying Subhaan Allaah (Glory be to Allaah)), tahleel (saying Laa ilaaha ill-Allaah (There is no god but Allaah)), takbeer (saying Allaahu akbar (Allaah is most Great)), praying for forgiveness, making du’aa’ and responding to the muezzin. Keep your tongue moist with the remembrance of Allaah and seek a great reward with a few words which you can utter. For every tasbeehah you will have (the reward of) one charity, for every tahmeedah (saying Alhamdulillah (Praise be to Allaah)) you will have (the reward of) one charity, for every takbeerah you will have (the reward of) one charity, and for every tahleelah you will have (the reward of) one charity.

The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Every person’s every joint must perform a charity every day the sun comes up, every tasbeehah is a charity, every tahmeedah is a charity, every tahleelah is a charity, every takbeerah is a charity, enjoining what is good is a charity, forbidding what is evil is a charity, and if you do two rak’ahs at duha time (the forenoon), that may be sufficient.” Narrated by Muslim, 720.

And he (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Two words which are light on the tongue and heavy in the Balance, and beloved to the Most Merciful: Subhaana Allaah wa bihamdih, subhaan Allaah il-‘Azeem (Glory and praise be to Allaah, glory be to Allaah the Almighty).” Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 6682; Muslim, 2694.

And he (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Whoever says ‘Subhaan Allaah il-‘Azeem wa bi hamdih (Glory and praise be to Allaah the Almighty),’ a palm tree will be planted for him in Paradise.” Narrated by al-Tirmidhi, 3465; classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Tirmidhi.

And he (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Whoever says ‘Astaghfir Allaah ul-‘azeem alladhi laa ilaaha illa huwa al-hayy ul-qayyoom wa atoobu ilayh (I seek the forgiveness of Allaah the Almighty, beside Whom there is no other god, and I repent to Him),’ will be forgiven even if he fled from the battlefield.” Narrated by Abu Dawood, 1517; al-Tirmidhi, 3277’ classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh Abi Dawood.

And he (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “There is no Muslim on earth who prays to Allaah for something but Allaah will grant him it, or divert an equivalent evil from him, so long as he does not pray for sin or the severing of family ties.” A man among the people said: “Then we will pray a great deal.” He said: “Allaah is most generous.” Narrated by al-Tirmidhi, 3573; classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Tirmidhi.

And he (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “When you hear the muezzin, say what he says, then send blessings upon me, for whoever send one blessing upon me, Allaah will send ten blessings upon him. Then ask Allaah to grant me al-waseelah, which is a position in Paradise which will be attained by only one of the slaves of Allaah, and I hope that I will be the one. Whoever asks for al-waseelah for me, intercession will be granted for him.” Narrated by Muslim, 384.

And he (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Whoever says when he hears the call to prayer, ‘Allaahumma rabba hadhhi’l-da’wat il-taammah wa’l-salaat il-qaa’imah, aati Muhammadan al-waseelah wa’l-fadeelah wab’athhu maqaaman mahmoodan alladhi wa’adtahu (O Allaah, Lord of this perfect call and the prayer which is about to begin, grant Muhammad al-waseelah (a station in Paradise) and al-fadeelah (a rank above the rest of creation), and raise him to the praised position that You have promised),’ my intercession will be granted for him on the Day of Resurrection.” Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 614.

See also the answer to question no. 4156

May Allaah increase us and you in beneficial knowledge and righteous deeds.

And Allaah knows best.

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http://islamqa.com/en/ref/4156

What can you do in one minute?

In our offices and workplaces we can hardly find time to do acts of worship and righteous deeds. What can we do in the short time that we can find in our day? How can we make use of it?

Praise be to Allaah.

Time is of the essence, it is too precious to be wasted or neglected. The wise person is the one who pays attention to his time and does not treat it as a vessel to be filled with cheap things and vain talk. Instead, he limits it to worthy efforts and righteous deeds that please Allaah and benefit other people. Every minute of a person’s life carries the potential to raise his own status and to make his people happier, little by little.

If you are keen to attain the highest position, and bring the most happiness to your people, then forget about relaxing and keep away from empty amusement.

In one minute you can do a lot of good and earn much reward. In just one minute, by giving in charity, studying, memorizing, or striving to do good deeds, you can make sure that this minute of your life is not wasted.  One minute may be recorded in your book of good deeds if you know how to make the most of it and take care of it:

Strive to make the most of each minute

If you forget it, you forget the most important thing, the truth.

There follows a list of things that can be done in one minute, by the permission of Allaah:

1.     1.     In one minute you can recite Soorat al-Faatihah 3 times, reciting rapidly and silently. Some scholars said that the reward for reading al-Faatihah is more than 600 hasanahs, so if you read it 3 times you will, by the permission of Allaah, gain more than 1800 hasanahs – all of that in one minute.

2.     In one minute you can recite Soorat al-Ikhlaas (Qul Huwa Allaahu Ahad) 20 times, reciting rapidly and silently. Reciting it once is equivalent to one-third of the Qur’aan. If you read it 20 times it is equivalent to reading the Qur’aan 7 times. If you read it 20 times in one minute each day, you will have read it 600 times in one month, and 7200 times in one year, which will be equal in reward to reading the Qur’aan 2400 times.

3.     You can read one page of the Book of Allaah in one minute.

4.     You can memorize a short aayah of the Book of Allaah in one minute.

5.     In one minute you can say Laa ilaaha ill-Allaah wahdahu laa shareeka lah, lahu’l-mulk wa lahu’l-hamd wa huwa ‘ala kulli shay’in qadeer (There is no god except Allaah alone with no partner; to Him be dominion and praise, and He is Able to do all things) – 20 times. The reward for saying this is like freeing 8 slaves for the sake of Allaah from among the sons of Ismaa’eel.

6.     In one minute you can say Subhaan Allaahi wa bi hamdihi (Glory and praise be to Allaah) 100 times. Whoever says that in one day will be forgiven for his sins even if they are like the foam of the sea.

7.     In one minute you can say Subhaan Allaahi wa bi hamdihi Subhaan Allaah il-‘Azeem (Glory and praise be to Allaah, glory be to Allaah the Almighty) 50 times. These are two phrases which are light on the lips, heavy in the balance and beloved to the Most Merciful, as was narrated by al-Bukhaari and Muslim.

8.     The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “When I say ‘Subhaan Allaah, wa’l-hamdu Lillah, wa laa ilaah ill-Allaah, wa Allaahu akbar (Glory be to Allaah, praise be to Allaah, there is no god except Allaah, and Allaah is Most Great)’, this is more beloved to me than all that the sun rises upon.” (Narrated by Muslim). In one minute, you can say all of these words more than 18 times. These words are the most beloved words to Allaah, the best of words, and they weigh heavily in the balance of good deeds, as was narrated in the saheeh ahaadeeth.

9.     In one minute you can say, Laa hawla wa laa quwwata illa Billaah (there is no strength and no power except with Allaah) more than 40 times. This is one of the treasures of Paradise, as was narrated by al-Bukhaari and Muslim. They are a means of putting up with difficulties and of aiming to achieve great things.

10. In one minute you can say Laa ilaaha ill-Allaah approximately 50 times. This is the greatest word, for it is the word of Tawheed, the good word, the word that stands firm. If these are the last words of a person, he will enter Paradise, and there are other reports which indicate how great these words are.

11. In one minute you can say Subhaan Allaah wa bi hamdih, ‘adada khalqihi, wa ridaa nafsihi, wazinata ‘arshihi, wa midaada kalimaatihi (Glory and praise be to Allaah, as much as the number of His creation, as much as pleases Him, as much as the weight of His Throne and as much as the ink of His words) more than 15 times. This words bring many more times the reward for other forms of tasbeeh and dhikr, as was reported in saheeh ahaadeeth from the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him).

12. In one minute you can seek the forgiveness of Allaah more than 100 times by saying “Astaghfir-Allaah (I seek the forgiveness of Allaah). The virtues of seeking forgiveness are no secret, for it is the means of attaining forgiveness and entering Paradise, and it is the means of being granted a good life, increasing one’s strength, warding off disasters, making things easier, bringing rain and increasing one’s wealth and children.

13. You can say a few brief and concise words in one minute, and Allaah may bring about some good through them that you could never imagine.

14. In one minute you can send blessings on the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) 50 times by saying Sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam (May Allaah bless him and grant him peace). In return Allaah will send blessings upon you 500 hundred times because one blessing brings ten like it.

15. In one minute you can motivate your heart to give thanks to Allaah, to love Him, to fear Him, to put hope in Him, to long for Him, and thus travel through the stages of ‘uboodiyyah (total enslavement to Allaah). You could do this when you are lying on your bed or walking in the street.

16. In one minute you can read more than two pages of a useful book that is easy to understand.

17. In one minute you can uphold the ties of kinship by calling a relative on the phone.

18. You can raise your hands and recite any du’aa’ you wish from the books of du’aa’, in one minute.

19. You can say salaams to and shake hands with a number of people in one minute.

20. You can forbid an evil action in one minute.

21. You can enjoin something good in one minute.

22. You can offer sincere advice to a brother in one minute.

23. You can console someone who is depressed in one minute.

24. You can remove something harmful from the road in one minute.

25. Making the most of one minute motivates you to make the most of other periods that would otherwise be wasted.

Al-Shaafa’i (may Allaah have mercy on him) said:

When people go to sleep, I let my tears flow, and I recite a verse of the most eloquent poetry

Is it not a waste that nights go by and I do not increase in knowledge, yet this time is counted as part of my life?

Finally, the more sincere you are towards Allaah and the more aware you are of Him, the greater will be your reward and the more your hasanaat will increase.

Note that most of these actions will not cost you anything; they do not require tahaarah (purity) and they will not tire you out or take much effort. On the contrary, you can do them whilst you are walking, or in your car, or lying down, or standing, or sitting, or waiting for somebody.

These actions are also among the greatest means of attaining happiness, expanding the chest (i.e., bringing relief and joy) and removing stress and anxiety. May Allaah help us and you to do that which He loves and which pleases Him. May Allaah bless our Prophet Muhammad.

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