بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
Somehow, I knew that word would catch your eye.
What is “Al-Muhajiroon”?
Well, that’s the name of a bi-monthly magazine run by the sisters at the Enlightened into Islam Center in Kuwait. [Here’s their blog.]
And it’s quite nice indeed. [Those of you who want to know more about the Names of Allah will REALLY like it. They have an article on a Name in each issue.]
You can download all the previous issues here.
Here are the Ramadan issues:
[Click on the picture to download the issue.]
1) Servitude in Fasting (Year 1429 AH)
2) What is after Ramadan? (Year 1430 AH)
3) Two Occasions of Joy for the Person Observing Saum (Fasting) (Year 1431 AH)
4) Patience and Gratitude during the Month of Ramadan (Year 1432 AH)
5) Lailatul Qadr – The Night of Decree (Year 1433 AH i.e. this year’s edition)
The Centre has also produced a couple of books. You can find them all online here.
Two of them are related to Ramadan:
[Click on the picture to download the book.]
1) The Verdicts of Fasting
2) Zakaat-ul-Fitr (The Breaking Fast Charity)
PS. It’s a total coincidence that three of the last four posts (including this one) have links to Islamic magazines.
بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
Someone sent me an absolutely marvelous link on zakaah the other day.
It was an interactive e-magazine which explains the fiqh (jurisprudence) of zakaah in an easy way.
If you’re anything like me (i.e. the fiqh of zakaah just goes above your head), then this e-mag is for you:
Make sure you click on all the links, otherwise you’ll lose out on the “interactive” part of the magazine.
[Note: Zakaah has nothing to do with Ramadan. It’s just that most Muslims seem to pay their zakaah in Ramadan.]
بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
Are Zakaah and Ramadan related?
In reality, they are not. [Zakaatul Fitr, which is different from zakaah, IS related to Ramadan though.]
However, many people pay their zakaah in Ramadan (only for some of them to erase the word “charity” from their vocabulary for the next 11 months).
I’ve put up some resources on zakaah before (the search function is very useful, you know).
However, here is a very simple guide to zakaah: A Brief Guide to Zakaah
There are two important issues that people always ask about:
1) How does one pay zakaah on the interest money they earned (which are unlawful earnings obviously) before they repented?
Here’s the fatwa (ruling) of Shaikh Ibn Baz (rahimahullah) on this issue.
2) How does one pay zakaah on money that he has loaned to others?
Here’s the fatwa of Shaikh ibn Uthaimeen (rahimahullah) on this issue.
بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
[This is the series with all the lovely bathroom pics, remember?]
So where were you?
Well, currently you’re in the bathroom, dying to rush out and get some coffee.
Sorry, that’s going to have to wait. It’s time for Fajr and you need to do wudhu (ablution) first.
So, now you need to head over to the wash basin (or sink, if you prefer).
[Why do I get the feeling that you’re still thinking about the coffee?]
So, how do you do wudhu?
Well, you do it the way the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) did it, of course.
If you’re a beginner, please read this post on my New Muslim blog.
If you want something more advanced, then try this book: The Prophet’s (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) Wudhu
Apart from doing the external actions the proper way, don’t forget to renew your intention when doing wudhu.
How can you do that? Well, one of the ways is to remember the many virtues of doing wudhu. Here’s one of them:
إذا توضأ العبد المؤمن ، فتمضمض ، خرجت الخطايا من فيه ، فإذا استنثر خرجت الخطايا من أنفه ، فإذا غسل وجهه خرجت الخطايا من وجهه ، حتى تخرج من تحت أشفار عينيه ، فإذا غسل يديه خرجت الخطايا من يديه ، حتى تخرج من تحت أظفار يديه ، فإذا مسح برأسه خرجت الخطايا من رأسه ، حتى تخرج من أذنيه ، فإذا غسل رجليه خرجت الخطايا من رجليه ، حتى تخرج من تحت أظفار رجليه ، ثم كان مشيه إلى المسجد ، وصلاته نافلة له
[Note: The sins being mentioned here are minor sins and not major sins. What’s the difference? I’ll write a future post on that, insha-Allah, when I start a new series on the major sins.]
So, try to remember this hadeeth whilst you’re doing wudhu. You’ll notice a big change in your wudhu.
You could also try to use a siwak. That will get you even more rewards!
So, now that you’ve finished your nice, proper, refreshing wudhu, what next?
Well, you need to leave the bathroom and recite the required dhikr (remembrance). After that, you would recite the adhkar (remembrances) for wudhu (i.e. those recited after it).
However, that’s for the next part.
To be continued…
بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
Remember this series? The last part discussed khushoo (humility) in prayer.
Salaah (prayer) is the second pillar of Islam. After this comes the zakaah (the obligatory charity).
[Note: It is zakaah and not zakaat. And while we’re having a language lesson, I’d also like to point out that “namaz” is an Urdu/Farsi/Turkish word, not an Arabic word so could we please stop using it in the English language? Baarakallahu feekum.]
Prayer is the right of Allah, whereas zakaah is the right of the slaves of Allah.
Allah has mentioned salaah and zakaah together 82 times in the Quran (according to Shaikh Saleh Al-Fawzan), thereby showing how intertwined these two really are.
So it’s strange to find people who pray but do not give zakaah. [Of course, it’s even stranger to find people who give zakaah but do not pray!]
If one wants to be a complete Muslim, one should fulfill both the rights of Allah and the rights of creation. Safeguarding one’s prayers and paying the zakaah are the first steps towards that.
I’m completely useless with the fiqh (jurisprudence) of zakaah so I won’t even go there. [I studied it 4 times and it just keeps going above my head.] You may find many resources here though.
However, I’d like to point out the following important points:
1) Zakaah is obligatory but sadaqah (charity) isn’t.
Zakaah is a bit like the five obligatory prayers and sadaqah is a bit like the voluntary prayers, in the sense that you have the obligatory part for everyone and you also have the voluntary part for those that want to go the extra mile.
2) Zakaah is not necessarily due in Ramadan. It is due when one (lunar) year passes on the wealth.
You might have multiple times where you pay zakaah during the year as you might have zakaah due on different things.
4) Zakaah and Zakaatul fitr are two totally different things.
The former is due after one (lunar) year. The latter is due at the end of Ramadan and is paid in the form of food.
5) Zakaah is not due on everybody. It is only due on those who fulfill the required conditions .
6) The one who doesn’t pay the zakaah out of stinginess is a major sinner. However, the one who doesn’t pay the zakaah because he doesn’t think it it obligatory is a disbeliever.
7) Zakaah can only be given to one of eight categories of people, whereas there is no restriction on who sadaqah can be given to.
Apart from the fasts and the night prayers, what also distinguishes Ramadan from the other months is the brotherhood (which is shown through the zakaah and sadaqah). So we need to extend this brotherhood to the other months as well.
Unfortunately, one of the issues that we’re facing today as an ummah (nation) is that the money flows in during Ramadan and all the people in need get enough.
However, in the other 11 months, the well seems to dry up.
Why is that? Well, I guess it’s the same reason that some people pray only in Ramadan but not outside of it.
The reason is that they don’t understand the Names and Attributes of Allah, nor do they know about His Rights. Due to this, they cheat themselves by only worshipping Him during Ramadan.
So, it is incumbent for the one who is truly sincere in worshipping Allah that he does so 12 months a year, not just one!
So we not only need to work on improving our prayers but we also need to be more consistent in giving charity.
An amazing story of consistency in giving charity would be Shaikh ibn Baz (rahimahullah). I heard that he gave so much charity that he never paid zakaah (because his wealth did not fulfill the conditions as he gave it away before the year passed), subhan Allah.
Insha-Allah, in the next post of this series, I’ll clear up some misunderstandings that people have about charity.
بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
Yes, they’re almost upon us – the best nights of the year.
No more napping. We need to take some action.
This Ramadan, I haven’t posted many resources because I did that last year.
I thought I would just link to the useful ones:
[All of these link to the post which contains the resource.]
Last Ten Days, Laylatul Qadr, Itikaf, Zakaatul Fitr and Eid
Articles / Books
1) When is Laylatul Qadr? [Don’t forget to read this one!]
6) Resources for Itikaf – Umm Muawiyah’s very own guide as to what you REALLY need for itikaf.
[Note: It seems that some people get confused between Zakaah and Zakaatul Fitr. They are two totally different things.]
Is this the last post for this Ramadan, you ask?
I wish but no. A few more to go, insha-Allah…
بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
Knowledge International University is offering two live (free) webinars on the Fiqh of Fasting.
Webinar 1: Introduction to Fiqh of Fasting
Friday 12th August, 10:30PM Saudi Time by Assim Al Hakeem
[That’s 11:30 PM UAE time and 7:30 PM GMT.]
Webinar 2: Contemporary Issues to Fiqh of Fasting
Sunday 14th August, 4:30PM Saudi Time by Shaikh Saad Ash-Shethry
[[That’s 5:30 PM UAE time and 1:30 PM GMT.]
There’s no registration required.
How can you listen in?
Just go to the KIU website and click on the live session link. You’ll find it on the main page.
This is a good opportunity for all of us to review what we already know and learn more, insha-Allah.
بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
[Fiqh = Jurisprudence. It sort of means the rulings regarding a particular thing.]
Last year, I put up a lot of resources on studying the fiqh of fasting so I thought I’d link to some of those again.
Which resource should you use?
Well, it depends on your level. If you are a beginner, try to choose one and stick with that for now.
However, if you are a student of knowledge, then you should try to go through as many of them as possible.
Also, I’d advise everyone to take notes and summarise the points in your Ramadan journal. That way, you won’t have to go through these books and lectures each year. All you have to do is to read your own notes.
[Note: The links take you to the earlier posts which contain the resources. I haven’t linked to the resources directly.]
1) Basic Fiqh for Ramadan by Brother Abu Taubah.
Nice and simple.
2) Ramadan Rulings By Brother Moosa Khoory
Also nice and simple. Oh and he’s also from the UAE.
3) 186 Rules for Ramadan by Brother Waleed Basyouni.
Good series. It mentions all the required issues.
He also has another lecture entitled “How to make this your best Ramadan ever“.
4) The Month of Mercy by Brother Abu Abdissalam
For those who like British accents.
Both of these are from a seminar entitled “From the Moon to the Spoon”….
6) Fasting in Ramadan by Shaikh Saleh As-Saleh
Covers just about every important topic related to Ramadan.
7) Fiqh of Siyaam by Brother Abdur Rauf Shakir
I haven’t linked to this before. His lectures are really detailed, masha-Allah. It’s very good for students of knowledge.
8) Two free courses from Islamic Online University
For those who prefer to study properly.
Books / Articles
1) The Fast of Ramadan by Shaikh Muhammad ibn Jamil Zino
Nice, simple, well-organized book.
2) Ramadan and Fasting by Brother Abdel Kader Kamel Tayeb.
Organised in a different way but that makes it more appealing.
Summarises the rules of fasting.
4) Rulings Pertaining to Ramadan by Shaikh Muhammad Salih Al-Munajjid
All the fatwas from Islam Q and A.
5) Ramadan as observed by the Prophet (salallahu alaihi wasallam) by Shaikh Saleem Al-Hilali and Shaikh Alee Hasan Al-Halabee
6) Lessons on Fasting, Taraweeh and Zakaah by Shaikh Muhammad Saalih Aal- Uthaimeeen (rahimahullah)
Simple book? Of course. Didn’t you notice the “Uthaimeen” in the author’s name?
7) The Nature of Fasting by Imam Ibn Taimiyyah (rahimahullah)
Just another book by one of the greatest scholars of all time.
بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
5) Steps to be taken to solve the difficulties mentioned above (contd. for Part 1)
c) Remove any hurdles that are present in waking up for Fajr.
Well, there are many hurdles that people face. Different people have different issues.
I would like to mention one of the hurdles though (and I apologise if it sounds crude but it needs to said) and that is something that many married people (especially newlyweds) face.
Many of them delay doing the ghusl for janaabah (the full bath to remove ritual impurity) until the morning. And what happens in the morning? Well, many of them feel too lazy to wake up and so they end up oversleeping and not praying Fajr. So, I would advise such people to do the ghusl BEFORE they go to sleep.
Of course, someone might point out that the Prophet (salallahu alaihi wasallam) sometimes did ghusl before he slept and sometimes he did it after he slept which means that it is permissible both ways.
That’s right and I never said that it wasn’t. However, for those that end up oversleeping Fajr due to the ghusl issue, it is better for them to do it before they sleep.
It’s similar to the case of Witr. It’s permissible to do it before you sleep or after you wake up (before Fajr). The best time is at the end of Qiyaam Al-Layl. However, if one is generally unable to get up for Qiyaam Al-Layl then it’s better that he/she prays it before sleeping.
d) Get out of the bedroom and go to the kitchen.
And I say that as a person who loves her room and hates the kitchen…
If we stay in our rooms at this time, then all we’ll be able to see are our nice cozy beds. And after a few minutes of staring at our beds, we’ll hop back in to them.
So, what we need to do is get out of the room and go to the kitchen. [For those of you who live in studio apartments, at least try to move further away from the bed and closer to the kitchen area…]
Why go to the kitchen? Well, because it’s so uncozy (yes, a new word) and so uninviting and it’s also where the caffeine is.
Yes, I know that I said that we need to get over our caffeine addiction but first I think we need to solve the post-Fajr nap problem.
e) Keep blaming yourself the whole day and tell yourself about the amount of time you lost.
Yes, we need to feel bad for wasting so much time sleeping. If we feel bad, we’ll put in more effort to get up and stay up the next morning.
f) Start working on something important.
Have you ever noticed that when our mind is engaged in something, we forget to be sleepy?
So, working on something really important and difficult might stop us from resnoozing (yes, another new word).
Also, for those who wanted to work on the other habits, then the time right after Fajr would be the best time.
If someone spent 15 minutes reciting the Quran after Fajr, then they would also be able to cultivate a habit of reciting the Book of Allah daily.
Also, for those who want to walk daily, then you could do it for 15 minutes and you could recite the morning adhkar (remembrances) at this time.
For the brothers who pray in the masjid, you could use the time between the adhan and the iqaamah for recitation. And if you can’t stay in the masjid until the sun rises, then you could recite the morning adhkar on the way back home.
Also, if you walked or cycled to and from the masjid instead of using a car, then that would double as a form of exercise. And you’d also get lots of fresh air.
6) Suggestions for those people who might not be able to stay awake.
Okay, I think we should all understand something. When somebody makes a general suggestion, it doesn’t have to apply to everybody. A person should be able to know what works for them and what doesn’t.
So, for example, when I spoke about forming this habit, I was NOT talking to all the readers.
Why not? Because for some of them it might be more productive to go to sleep after Fajr.
For example, for those who work night shifts (like doctors), it’s not possible to ask them to stay awake in the mornings because that is their sleeping time!
Also, there might be people who suffer from insomnia. What happens if they haven’t been able to sleep the whole night? They won’t be able to function unless they get some sleep. I know this because it has happened to me frequently.
Also, there might be someone who works the entire morning and studies at night (or vice versa) and they might only get a few hours of sleep in the night as a result of this. So, this kind of person might be more productive throughout the day due to getting that extra bit of sleep.
Now, I mentioned in Part 1 that the Prophet (salallahu alaihi wasallam) asked Allah to bless his ummah in the early part of the day and that he himself never slept after Fajr.
So, someone may ask, wouldn’t sleeping after Fajr be opposing the sunnah? Well, no, because they have a valid reason.
Also, sometimes one might give up something good in order to achieve an even greater good in its place.
For example, I recall a lecturer mentioning that Abdullah ibn Masood (radiallahu anhu) used to get very tired when doing nafl (optional) fasts which left him unable to do much recitation (his strength). So he decided to stop doing that, so he could focus on reciting the Quran. So, he left one good thing for another good thing which he happened to be better at.
However, I still have some suggestions for the people mentioned above (those who need to sleep after Fajr):
a) If you work at nights, then try to pray some rakaahs of Qiyaam Al-Layl. Also, try to remember to do dua (last third of the night) and istighfar (the time before Fajr). Also, try to remember to recite the sleeping adhkar and surahs before you go to sleep.
b) Try not to sleep until you’ve recited the morning adhkar.
c) Try to stay awake remembering Allah until sunrise and then sleep after that.
I recall reading that this is what Shaikh Ibn Uthaimeen (rahimahullah) used to do and this is what most of us do when we are in itikaf.
This is because the time between Fajr and sunrise has a lot of virtue (a good time to recite the Quran and memorise it) so it would be better to stay awake during it and sleep after sunrise.
d) For those who might not get the chance to pray Dhuha later, try to stay awake 15-20 minutes past sunrise, then pray Dhuha and then go to sleep.
These are just some suggestions. If anybody has anything else that they’d like to add, then please feel free to do so.
Insha-Allah, I hope that we are all able to cultivate this habit at the end of these 3 weeks.