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Posts tagged ‘Fresh beginning’

18
Mar

How to make a fresh start – Part 3

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Assalamu Alaikum.

[Here are Parts 1 and 2.]

10) Our companionship can make or break us.

The scholar asked the murderer to leave his evil land and go to a land where there were pious people.

So one of the reasons for his evil actions was due to the place that he was in and the type of people that he was surrounded by.

So, if we want to make a fresh start, we need to take a look at the people around us. What are they like? Do they enjoin us to good… or to evil?

There are many Quranic ayaat about the importance of having righteous companions.

Look at what the people of hellfire will say when asked why they were put into hell:

مَا سَلَكَكُمْ فِي سَقَرَ

قَالُوا لَمْ نَكُ مِنَ الْمُصَلِّينَ

وَلَمْ نَكُ نُطْعِمُ الْمِسْكِينَ

وَكُنَّا نَخُوضُ مَعَ الْخَائِضِينَ

وَكُنَّا نُكَذِّبُ بِيَوْمِ الدِّينِ

حَتَّىٰ أَتَانَا الْيَقِينُ

“What has caused you to enter Hell?”

“They will say: “We were not of those who used to offer their Salah (prayers). Nor we used to feed Al-Miskin (the poor); And we used to talk falsehood (all that which Allah hated) with vain talkers. And we used to belie the Day of Recompense. Until there came to us (the death) that is certain.” [Surah Al-Muddaththir (74) : 42-47]

One of the reasons was because they were too busy mooching around with vain talkers.

Here’s another ayah that informs us of the disbeliever’s regret on the Last Day:

وَيَوْمَ يَعَضُّ الظَّالِمُ عَلَىٰ يَدَيْهِ يَقُولُ يَا لَيْتَنِي اتَّخَذْتُ مَعَ الرَّسُولِ سَبِيلًا

يَا وَيْلَتَىٰ لَيْتَنِي لَمْ أَتَّخِذْ فُلَانًا خَلِيلًا

لَقَدْ أَضَلَّنِي عَنِ الذِّكْرِ بَعْدَ إِذْ جَاءَنِي ۗ وَكَانَ الشَّيْطَانُ لِلْإِنْسَانِ خَذُولًا

“And (remember) the Day when the dhaalim (wrong-doer, oppressor, polytheist, etc.) will bite at his hands, he will say: “Oh! Would that I had taken a path with the Messenger (Muhammad). Ah! Woe to me! Would that I had never taken so-and-so as a friend! He indeed led me astray from the Reminder (this Quran) after it had come to me. And Shaitan (Satan) is ever a deserter to man in the hour of need.” [Surah Al-Furqan (25) : 27-29]

Allah advises us in the Quran to be around those who are obedient to Him:

وَاصْبِرْ نَفْسَكَ مَعَ الَّذِينَ يَدْعُونَ رَبَّهُمْ بِالْغَدَاةِ وَالْعَشِيِّ يُرِيدُونَ وَجْهَهُ ۖ وَلَا تَعْدُ عَيْنَاكَ عَنْهُمْ تُرِيدُ زِينَةَ الْحَيَاةِ الدُّنْيَا ۖ وَلَا تُطِعْ مَنْ أَغْفَلْنَا قَلْبَهُ عَنْ ذِكْرِنَا وَاتَّبَعَ هَوَاهُ وَكَانَ أَمْرُهُ فُرُطًا

“And keep yourself patiently with those who call on their Lord (i.e. your companions who remember their Lord with glorification, praising in prayers, etc., and other righteous deeds, etc.) morning and afternoon, seeking His Face, and let not your eyes overlook them, desiring the pomp and glitter of the life of the world; and obey not him whose heart We have made heedless of Our Remembrance, one who follows his own lusts and whose affair (deeds) has been lost.” [Surah Al-Kahf (18) : 28]

لَا تَجِدُ قَوْمًا يُؤْمِنُونَ بِاللَّـهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الْآخِرِ يُوَادُّونَ مَنْ حَادَّ اللَّـهَ وَرَسُولَهُ وَلَوْ كَانُوا آبَاءَهُمْ أَوْ أَبْنَاءَهُمْ أَوْ إِخْوَانَهُمْ أَوْ عَشِيرَتَهُمْ ۚ أُولَـٰئِكَ كَتَبَ فِي قُلُوبِهِمُ الْإِيمَانَ وَأَيَّدَهُمْ بِرُوحٍ مِنْهُ ۖ وَيُدْخِلُهُمْ جَنَّاتٍ تَجْرِي مِنْ تَحْتِهَا الْأَنْهَارُ خَالِدِينَ فِيهَا ۚ رَضِيَ اللَّـهُ عَنْهُمْ وَرَضُوا عَنْهُ ۚ أُولَـٰئِكَ حِزْبُ اللَّـهِ ۚ أَلَا إِنَّ حِزْبَ اللَّـهِ هُمُ الْمُفْلِحُونَ

“You (O Muhammad) will not find any people who believe in Allah and the Last Day, making friendship with those who oppose Allah and His Messenger, even though they were their fathers, or their sons, or their brothers, or their kindred (people). For such He has written Faith in their hearts, and strengthened them with Rooh (proofs, light and true guidance) from Himself. And We will admit them to Gardens (Paradise) under which rivers flow, to dwell therein (forever). Allah is pleased with them, and they with Him. They are the Party of Allah. Verily, it is the Party of Allah that will be the successful.” [Surah Al-Mujadilah (58) : 22]

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا اتَّقُوا اللَّـهَ وَكُونُوا مَعَ الصَّادِقِينَ

“O you who believe! Be afraid of Allah, and be with those who are true (in words and deeds).” [Surah At-Tawbah (9) : 119]

There are also many ahadeeth about taking righteous people as friends:

لا تصاحب إلا مؤمنا ، ولا يأكل طعامك إلا تقي

Abu Saeed (radiallahu anhu) narrated that the Prophet (salallahu alaihi wasallam) said: “Do not accompany except a believer, and do not let anyone eat your food but one of taqwa (piety).” [Sunan Abee Dawood, Hadeeth No. 4832. Graded “hasan” by Al-Albani in Sahih Sunan Abee Dawood, Hadeeth No. 4832.]

مثل الجليس الصالح والسوء ، كحامل المسك ونافخ الكير ، فحامل المسك : إما أن يحذيك ، وإما أن تبتاع منه ، وإما أن تجد منه ريحا طيبة ، ونافخ الكير : إما أن يحرق ثيابك ، وإما أن تجد ريحا خبيثة

Narrated Abu Musa (radiallahu anhu): The Prophet (salallahu alaihi wasallam) said, ‘The example of a good pious companion and an evil one is that of a person carrying musk and another blowing a pair of bellows. The one who is carrying musk will either give you some perfume as a present, or you will buy some from him, or you will get a good smell from him, but the one who is blowing a pair of bellows will either burn your clothes or you will get a bad smell from him.” [Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume No. 7, Hadeeth No. 442]

Ultimately, we are whom we befriend:

الرجل على دين خليله فلينظر أحدكم من يخالل

Abu Hurairah (radiallahu anhu) narrated that the Prophet (salallahu alaihi wasallam) said: “A man follows the religion of his close friend, so let one of you look at whom he takes as his close friend.” [Sunan Abee Dawood, Hadeeth No. 4833. Graded “hasan” by Al-Albani in Sahih Sunan Abee Dawood, Hadeeth No. 4833.]

So, let us all look around and see what kind of people we befriend because they represent who we truly are, and those are the kind of people we will be with in the hereafter as well.

جاء رجل إلى رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم فقال : يا رسول الله ! متى الساعة ؟ قال ” وما أعددت للساعة ؟ ” قال : حب الله ورسوله . قال ” فإنك مع من أحببت ” . قال أنس : فما فرحنا بعد الإسلام ، فرحا أشد من قول النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم ” فإنك مع من أحببت ” . قال أنس : فأنا أحب الله ورسوله . وأبا بكر وعمر . فأرجو أن أكون معهم . وإن لم أعمل بأعمالهم

Anas ibn Malik (radiallahu anhu) reported that a person came to Allah’s Messenger (salallahu alaihi wasallam) and said to Allah’s Messenger: When would be the Last Hour? Thereupon he (the Prophet) said: What preparation have you made for the Last Hour? He said: The love of Allah and of His Messenger (is my only preparation).* Thereupon he (the Prophet) said: You would be along with one whom you love. Anas said: Nothing pleased us more after accepting Islam than the words of Allah’s Messenger: You would be along with one whom you love. And Anas said: I love Allah and His Messenger and Abu Bakr and Umar, and I hope that I would be along with them although I have not acted like them. [Sahih Muslim, Hadith No. 6380]

[*Another narration states “significant preparation” which implies that he fulfilled his obligatory duties.]

To be continued…

30
Aug

Lecture/Article: Repentance in Ramadan

Assalamu Alaikum.

I think many people dream of being religious one day, or at least that’s what I understood after talking to many sisters.

The key word here is “dream”. Many of us dream. So we think that one day, it will all fall into place and we’ll be great slaves of Allah and we’ll go to Paradise.

Brothers and Sisters, we can’t sin day and night and barely remember Allah  and then expect to get that house in Paradise.

Paradise is earned. And who will earn it? The ones who strove hard for it.

[Note: We do not get into Paradise solely through our good deeds, but rather through the Mercy of Allah.]

Let’s all ask ourselves a few questions:

1) Have we changed at all in the last few years?

-Do we have more tawheed than before?

– Are we more conscious that Allah is watching us?

– Do we pray more?

– Are we more attached to the Quran? Do we apply it more?

– Do we have more knowledge of Islam?

– Do we have better manners?

– Do we give in charity more?

– Are we more modestly dressed than before? [This applies to both men and women.]

– Do we control our tongues more? Do we use them more for the remembrance of Allah or for the remembrance of this worldly life?

– Do we sin less? And if we sin, how long does it take us to ask for Allah’s Forgiveness?

We should all try to ask ourselves in which areas we have improved.

2) If we didn’t change at all or didn’t change much, then why not?

Are we really in it to please Allah? Or are we still worried about what created beings have to say?

Created beings who, like us, fall ill, need to go to the bathroom, will get old and will die (and when buried, will rot in the ground).

Are we attached to them* more than we are to Allah?

[*Them = Spouses, children, family, friends, colleagues, celebrities, you name it.]

And saying “no” doesn’t prove we aren’t. Our actions are what will prove if we are or are not attached to them.

3) When is the time for change going to come?

Allah says:

“Has not the time come for the hearts of those who believe to be affected by Allah’s Reminder (this Quran), and that which has been revealed of the truth, lest they become as those who received the Scripture before (i.e. Jews and Christians), and the term was prolonged for them and so their hearts were hardened? And many of them were Faasiqoon (rebellious, disobedient to Allah).” [Surah Al-Hadid (57) :16]

Isn’t it way past time?

Here are two resources that talk about repenting in Ramadan. Don’t we want to be different people in Shawwal than we were in Shaban?

Here’s the article: Repentance in Ramadan.

Repentance in Ramadan by Said Rageah