ISLAMIC - ISLAMIC
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KNOWLEDGE.

1)           WHICH ELM IS REQUIRED MENTIONED IN AHADEETH?

2)           BASIC DEEN KNOWLEDGE REQUIRED BY A MUSLIM

3)           UNDERSTANDING GOD AND THE SPIRIT

4)           WHAT IS SOUL?

5)           NAFS AND ITS KINDS

6)           WHO IS SAHABI?

7)           WHAT IS THE SUNNAH?

8)           GOING TO CHINA FOR KNOWLEDGE

9)      importance of elm (education)

10)       DID THE ARABS KNOW ABOUT ALLAH BEFORE THE PROPHET

11)           BONDS OF ISLAM WILL BE UNDONE

 

12)           QAREEN (COMPANION)

13)           TIME DIFFERENCE BETWEEN ADAM & MUHAMMAD (PBUH)

14)           ALLAH HAS SEALED THE HEART OF KUFFAR

15)           ALL RELIGIONS TEACH RIGHTEOUS, THEN WHY FOLLOW ISLAM?

 

16)         prayers not answered or fulfilled by Allah (SWT)?

 

17)        DO MUSLIMS WORSHIP THE KAABA?

 

18)       BACKBITING

 

19)       CALLING BY NAMES

 

20)       DOES DREAMS HAVE ANY MEANING

 

21)       HOW TO REACT WITH DREAMS

 

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1. WHICH ELM IS REQUIRED MENTIONED IN AHADEETH?

Question :

There are many ahadeeths describing the importance of elm (science) and that scientists will have a great reward, so what's meant by elm? Is it just the forensic elm that's mentioned in ahadeeths or could it be any kind of elm like biology, physics, electronics etc?

Answer :  Praise be to Allah . 

The knowledge mentioned here is the knowledge of sharee’ah which is derived from the Quran and Sunnah. This is the legacy of the Prophets, for the Prophets did not leave behind dirhams and dinars (money), rather they only left behind knowledge. Whoever learns it gains a great deal. When the texts commend knowledge, what is meant is knowledge of the Quran, Sunnah and sharee’ah. This also includes knowledge of nahw (grammar), i.e., the Arabic language, because it is the language of the Quran; knowledge of how inheritances are to be shared out (faraa’id); acts of worship (‘ibaadaat); interactions with others (mu’aamalaat); punishments prescribed in sharee’ah (hudood); the shar’i literature and Arabic literature, for it is the biography of the close friends (awliya’) of Allah  and His righteous slaves.

Similarly it is important to know the means to this knowledge, such as Usool al-Fiqh, tawheed, ‘Aqeedah, the basic principles of Islam, etc. With regard to other, worldly sciences which the Muslims need to know, there is no doubt that they come under the heading of fard kifaayah (communal obligation, i.e., if some of the community does it, the rest are absolved of the obligation); those who are able to learn them are obliged to do so, thus fulfilling the obligation of fard kifaayah, because the people are in need of that, so long as that does not prevent them from learning the things that they are obliged to know.

Undoubtedly there is benefit in sciences such as biology, chemistry, etc. Many of the scholars were of the view that it is obligatory to learn necessary crafts and industries, and there should be enough people who have these skills, such as blacksmiths, tailors, barbers, etc.

 Shaykh ‘Abd-Allah  ibn Jibreen

 And the sciences which Muslims are in need of, such as military skills, are even more essential and more obligatory. And Allah  knows best.

Sheikh Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid

Excerpted, with some modifications, from: http://islamqa.com/en/

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2. BASIC DEEN KNOWLEDGE REQUIRED BY A MUSLIM

Question :

What every Muslim should know about his Deen?

Answer :  By Habib Ahmad

Prophet Muhammad (saws) said: "Seeking Knowledge is obligatory upon every Muslim." (Related by Ibn 'Adiyy, Al-Bayhaqi & Al-Tabarani)

Though this Hadith is known and memorised by most Muslims, the essence, the amount, and the kind of knowledge referred to in this Hadith remains misunderstood by many.

If it is true that the knowledge incumbent upon every Muslim pertains to religious knowledge, or al-'Ilm al-Shar'i, how deeply does one have to pursue his quest of this knowledge to fulfill his duties and discharge the learning obligations placed upon him? In other words, what are the minimum teachings that every Muslim - male or female - is required to know about his Deen?

TYPES OF KNOWLEDGE IN ISLAM

Muslim scholars classify knowledge into two categories:

Obligatory Knowledge (fardh 'ayn)

This refers to knowledge of the fundamentals of Islamic beliefs which every Muslim must know. Seeking this knowledge is an obligatory duty upon every Muslim. All obligatory knowledge deal exclusively with al-'Ilm al-Shari'i, that is, knowledge pertaining to Islamic faith, acts of worship, and the necessary transaction in the daily dealing of a Muslim.

Optional Knowledge (fardh kifayah)

This is not a duty required of every individual, but rather it falls upon the community as a whole. Hence, if a group of individuals in the community undertake to acquire this kind of knowledge, all other individuals will be exempted from this duty, and the whole community will be free from responsibility or negligence to acquire this kind of knowledge. Examples of such knowledge include studying Islamic law and other basic sciences, industries and professions which are vital for the welfare of the society.

Unlike obligatory knowledge, optional knowledge covers part of Islamic knowledge and all worldly knowledge. The former is called al-'Ilm al-Shar'i al Kifa'i (optional Islamic knowledge), while the latter is called al-Ilm al-dunyawi (worldly knowledge).

Religious sciences: These cover all branches of Islamic Shariah, such as: tafsir (Qur'anic exegeses), fiqh, hadith sciences (known as mustalah al-hadith or 'Ilm usul al-hadith), seerah (the Prophet's biography), Islamic political science, (As-siyasah al-shar'iyah), Islamic history, etc.

Each of these sciences may require knowledge of other sciences to fully and comprehensively cover the substance of the matter studied. For example: tafsir needs Arabic grammar, Arabic literature, and other linguistic skills; Hadith sciences need the science of criticism (which looks at the narrators' credibility, trustworthiness, power of memorization, etc.), called 'Ilm al-jarh wat-ta'deel.

The natural and applied sciences: These are all the basic sciences, industries and professions which are of vital necessity for the welfare of the community. Examples of such fields include: engineering; agriculture, fisheries, food sciences, etc.

Leaders of every Muslim community should always do their best to procure the necessary number of scholars, professionals and qualified men and women in all fields of optional knowledge needed by the community. For example, Muslims in America must train sufficient number of Shariah scholars to answer questions raised by members of the community. They must also prepare enough educators – administrators, teachers and counsellors to fill the growing needs of Islamic schools in this country. Both male and female Muslim doctors are needed in every city to care for male and female Muslim patients, respectively.

From the above discussion, we can fully understand the responsibility that lies upon the shoulders of Muslims in this continent. Any community which does not take the necessary steps to satisfy its own needs in all fields of optional knowledge becomes subject to the punishment of Allah. Consequently, all its members will share the blame and the sins for their shortcomings.

MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS FOR ISLAMIC SCIENCES

First, the understanding fundamentals of Iman: This is also called 'Ilm Usul ud-Deen (Fundamentals of Deen), or 'Ilm al-Tawheed (the Oneness of Allah), or simply 'Aqeedah (Islamic faith). Every Muslim must have a general knowledge of all matters pertaining to his faith. He should have a clear understanding of the Lord he worships, the Prophet he follows and the Deen to which he committed himself. Needless to say, one should exert the best of one's effort to acquire these fundamentals.

Second, understanding Islamic rules and conduct (fiqh al-ahkam): This is also called fiqh al-'Ibadat (understanding of acts of worship). This field covers all aspects of the Islamic acts of worship that are necessary for the correct practice of one's Salat, Zakat, Sawm, and Hajj. It also covers all aspects of family issues, such as marriage, divorce, children's education, as well as rules and regulations for one's business transactions such as, buying, selling, borrowing and lending, etc.

A Muslim is obligated to learn from fiqh al-ahkam only matters that are related to Ibadah (worship) he needs to perform; and rules of a particular transaction he wants to undertake. For example, if a Muslim has not reached the age for prayer or fasting, he does not have to learn about them though he may be encouraged to do so. Also, if one does not have the necessary means to perform Hajj, one does not need to learn its rituals until one becomes able to undertake the Hajj journey.

By learning those two branches, a Muslim will know His Lord by all His beautiful names and Most High attributes. He will renounce all imperfections that ignorant and deviant people attributed to Allah. He will know the status, function and rights of the Prophets and, thus, will not elevate them to a divine status, nor will he degrade them to a status that does not befit their prophethood as many heretics had done. He will follow a similar course when dealing with other required beliefs, such as the belief in the Angels, the Books, the Predetermined Decree, the Last Day, the punishment in the grave, etc. On the other hand, before performing any act of worship, a Muslim should know the requirements, the conditions and the desirable actions pertaining to that act. Hence, He will never practice any act of worship or undertake any transaction not sanctioned by the Qur'an or Sunnah.

Just by contemplating the Islamic knowledge of Muslims today, the reader will realize how much those two disciplines, which are required of every Muslim, have been neglected, if not totally ignored. Unfortunately, there are many Muslim professors, doctors, and engineers, who hold the most advanced academic or professional positions in their respective institutions, yet do not possess the minimum knowledge of the Islamic sciences. Ironically, while it takes only a few weeks or even a few days to acquire the obligatory Islamic knowledge, it may take at least two years to obtain a basic degree in any worldly field. Though these brothers and sisters are to be thanked and encouraged for their worldly endeavour, they are undoubtedly sinful due to their shortcomings in learning the required Islamic knowledge.

Every Muslim should know that once he has corrected his beliefs, and Ibadah, through knowledge, and cleansed his devotions from any type of Shirk (i.e. Showing off, pleasing others besides/other than Allah, etc.), he can aspire and hope for his reward from Allah (Most Exalted is He). Indeed, it is through knowledge and sincerity that one can enter paradise. This is how we can understand the Hadith of our beloved Prophet : "Whoever adopts the path of seeking knowledge, Allah eases for him the way to Paradise." (Related by Ahamad, Tirmithi, Abu Dawud, Ibn Majah, and al-Darami)

MUSLIMS SHOULD TEACH WHAT THEY LEARN

A Muslim who has learned the requirements of his individual duties is responsible for disseminating the knowledge he has acquired to his family members first; then to his friends, co-workers, neighbours, etc. Allah (Most Exalted is He) says:

"O you who believe! Ward off from yourselves and your families a Fire (Hell) whose fuel is men and stones…"  (At-Tahrim 66:6)

The only way to save one's family members from Hell is to teach them the Islamic obligations and instruct them to observe them consistently.

The Messenger of Allah also emphasized this responsibility. He said: "Every one of you is a steward and is accountable for that which is committed to his charge. The ruler is a steward and is accountable for his charge, a man is a steward and is accountable for his charge, a man is a steward in respect of his household, a woman is a steward in respect of her husband's house and his children. Thus, everyone of your is accountable for that which is committed to his charge." (Related by Bukhari and Muslim)

The following Hadith is a strong reminder for anyone of us whom Allah has blessed with some Islamic knowledge: "Whoever is asked about a knowledge that he knows about and then hides it and keeps it away, he will be bridled on the day of judgement with a bridle of fire." (Related by Ahmad, Abu Dawud and Al-Tirmidhi)

CHOICES TO STUDY FURTHER

Whether one who has acquired the requisite knowledge and committed himself to spreading it, will further his study or be content with that level is left to his decision. One should realise, however, that not all people possess the aptitude and diligence to enter the depths of Islamic knowledge, for this is a favour that Allah gives to whomever He pleases.

Nevertheless, one should keep in mind the virtues and merits of disseminating the knowledge of Islam. The Prophet said: "Allah and His angels and the creatures of Heavens and earth, even the ant in its dwelling and the fish in the sea, do send Salat to the one who teaches people (good) beneficial knowledge." (Related by Al-Tirmidhi)

The Salat of Allah is His mercy that he bestows on His slaves; the Salat of the angels and other creatures is to ask Allah to forgive these servants.

Excerpted, with some modifications, from: http://www.missionislam.com/

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3. UNDERSTANDING GOD AND THE SPIRIT

Question :

I have had this question puzzling me for some time, I am Muslim Alhamdulillah and I had a question concerning this verse in the Quran "Behold, thy Lord said to the angels: I am about to create man from clay (71) When I have fashioned him (in due proportion) and breathed into him of My spirit, fall ye down in obeisance unto him." (Sad 38:71-72)

According to this verse, what appears is that Allah SWT is breathing part of His spirit into him. So is this technically saying that Allah SWT has a spirit like other human beings? But how can this be when it clearly says in the Quran in Surat Al- Ikhlas, verse 4: "And there is none like unto Him".

How can Allah SWT have a spirit, for He is God the Absolute and One. Or is this verse saying that He created the spirit He put into Adam, but it belongs to Him as a possession, meaning it is His spirit in a genitive sense. Please help me for I am very confused.

Answer :  Name of Counselor         Ahmad Saad

First of all, I am very happy that a question like this is being asked as it opens the door for a lot of people to learn and for us to dispel misconceptions and clarify very vital and important points.

Let's stress the fact that Muslims believe that Almighty Allah is One. He is not like anything or anyone and nothing is like unto Him. His Oneness and uniqueness is that of entity, actions and attributes as mentioned by great scholars of theology like Imam Abu Jaafar At-Tahawi (b. 239/853) in his well known text Al-Aqeedah At-Tahawiyyah' (The Creed of Imam Al-Tahawi; known as the statement of Ahl-As-Sunnah wal Jamaah.)

The oneness of entity means that nothing is like Almighty Allah as we are all created from materials. Therefore, there are peers for us and even if we cannot see the individuals created from that material, we can see the material itself.

For instance, the Jinns are created from fire, although we, as created from clay, cannot see jinn because their substance is lighter than ours, we can still see the substance they are created from, i.e. fire. Yet, Almighty Allah is beyond substances and matters because He is the One who created them.

The oneness of actions means that it is only Him who has created things out of scratch and fashioned them in this unique unprecedented way.

The oneness of attributes means that Allah's attributes are the same in all situations and cases. When something big happens, He (glory be to Him) has already known it by His same knowledge without having to adapt His knowledge to suit this big thing. His knowledge is one, His Power and Might is one as well.

This oneness is the core message of the Quran and its assertion is the aim of all divine messages sent with various messengers and Prophets in various ages and centuries.

Now coming to the point upon which you built your question, let's address it in its all aspects.

There is always a problem with communicating words when they are translated into another language and there is a famous saying that goes: 'a translator is a traitor' and there is some truth in it as transferring the meaning between various languages normally leads to the twisting of it.

Taking this into consideration, we have to look at the Arabic original to discern what is the real wording. In addition, we understand that the Quran explains the Quran and the substance of the Quran is the Arabic language. So we need to use two important tools to clarify this ambiguity; i.e. the Arabic language and the Quranic verses that can help in explaining this one in hand.

When we look at the occurrences of similar messages in the Quran, we will find that the main text speaking about spirit and its nature is in Surat Al-Israa', verse 85 which gives the meaning of:

*{They are asking you concerning the Spirit. Say the Spirit is by the command of my Lord, and of knowledge you have been vouchsafed but little.}* (Al-Israa' 17:85)

If we notice here, the verse says: 'it is by the command' i.e. it is created by the command of my Lord. This verse which was revealed as a response to a group of people who were asking the Prophet all the time about the spirit, its nature, its substance and if it is created or preexisted and the Prophet (peace be upon him) did not have a clear-cut answer to them.

Therefore, the Quran came telling the Prophet the answer, which is that the spirit is a creature just like all other creatures. It is created by Allah to dwell in the bodies of human beings and is functioning there by the command of Allah and once Almighty Allah commands it to stop functioning, life comes to an end.

As for its substance and the material it is created from, this is something beyond our understanding and it is one of the secrets known to Allah only. Definitely, there are many secrets in this universe that have not been yet unfolded to us.

What we can grasp is that the 'spirit' is something different in nature from liquids, gases, physical matters and is known to Allah only as it is created by Him.

Imam Al-Fakhr Al-Razi in his great exegesis of the Quran known as 'Al-Tafsir Al-Kabir; Mafatih Al-Ghayb' (The Great Commentary: The Keys to the Unseen) commented on this verse of Surat Al-Israa' and communicated to us the message that the unbelievers were asking about this unsolved matter of the spirit, is it eternal, is it created, or what about it?

And the answer of the Quran was very clear: As for its being created or non-created, of course it is created and it is something of the actions of Allah that He gives life, instills spirits in people or takes it from them. As for its substance, you are yet far limited to understand this.

But why does Allah say: 'min ruhi' (from My Spirit) in the verse you referred to?

Imam Al-Fakhr Al-Razi explains this as well in his commentary on the verse and says: 'Almighty Allah has said 'My' and added the spirit of Adam to Himself just as a way of honoring Adam and ennobling him.' (Al-Tafsir Al-Kabir, the commentary on Surat Al-Hijr)

Being added to Allah does not necessarily mean it is part of Him (glory be to Him). It is as when you say about a painting you have painted: 'This is my brush', it does not mean that the brush is part of you or that the brush has done that, rather, you are using metaphor.

Another example is when someone loves someone and says 'he is my heart' it just denotes his care and love for him, not that he has physically become a part of him.

Believers are supposed to think of Allah's creation and ponder upon the universe, but never to think of His entity. This is beyond our intellects, simply because we are subject to the laws of Allah and Allah is the Creator of such laws, so He is not subject to them.

No one can claim that he is unified with Allah because he is the 'spirit' of Allah, because such confusion has led unbelievers to fall into the abyss of claiming that Allah has physical, or, "biological" children.

The Quran is very clear that everything we think of Allah, He is far beyond. And let me conclude with what Imam At-Tahawi mentioned as well:

"Imaginations cannot attain Him, comprehensions cannot perceive Him, and creatures do not bear any similarity to Him." (The Creed of Imam At-Tahawi; translated by Hamza Yusuf, published by Zaytuna Institute 2007, p. 49)

Excerpted, with some modifications, from: www.readingislam.com/

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4. WHAT IS SOUL?

Question :

What is Soul and its travel from body to death and back on the Day of Judgment?

Answer

THE JOURNEY OF THE SOUL

(By Sheikh Suhaib Hasan, Safar 1416 AH)

During the lifetime of the Prophet (saws) the Jews of Medina sent their allies, the Makkan infidels, to the Prophet (saws) to ask about the soul. In reply to their questions, the following Qur'anic verse was revealed:

"They ask you [O Muhammad (saws)] concerning the Ruh (Soul). Say: 'It is one of the things, the knowledge of which is only with my Lord. And of knowledge, you (mankind) have been given very little."  (Al-Israa 17:85)

What is the Soul ?

The Qur'an and Sunnah give us only a limited knowledge concerning the soul. From it we can say that the Arabic words 'Ruh' and 'Nafs' are both used, sometimes interchangeably, for the soul. Imam Ibn Al-Qayyim wrote in his scholarly work "Kitab al Ruh",

" Ruh is an entity which differs totally from the physical body. It is a subtle, ecclesiastical, enlightened living and moving body which penetrates into the depths of the organs and flows into them like the water in the rose or the oil in the olive or the fire in the coal. As long as these organs remain able to accept the impressions of this subtle body, the 'Ruh' remains attached to these organs and provides them with feeling and movement. But when these organs are spoiled because of the dominance of diseased elements upon it, and they are no longer able to accept the impressions of the soul, it leaves the body and heads towards the world of the souls. "

There is some difference in the way the words 'Ruh' and 'Nafs' are used. The 'Ruh' is the subtle spirit, which resides in the heavens and needs a physical body to carry it on the earth. When this spirit is given a body, life begins and it is described as 'Nafs'. The word 'Nafs' is used in a number of ways by the Qur'an, all of which imply the meaning of a soul with a body.

1. 'Nafs' meaning "Self."

"…. You know what is in my self but I do not know what is in Your self…."  (Al-Ma’ida 5:116)

2. 'Nafs' meaning "Blood".

"The (insect) which has flowing Nafs (blood)."

3. Nafs means as a strong force in man, which can push him either towards good or evil. The concept of 'Nafs al Ammara bis Su' ('Nafs' which encourages evil) and 'Nafs al Lawwama' ('Nafs' which blames) and 'Nafs al Mutmainna' ('Nafs' which is contented) are discussed in the next chapter.

Four Worlds

The soul is a creature of Allah. It is blown into every human being when it is just a fetus of 120 days old, it remains in contact if not inside the human being throughout its life on earth, and at the point of death it departs from the body to reside in the heavens. Like everything else in the universe it is a creation of Allah, but as the above Qur'anic verse informs us, mankind has been given only limited knowledge concerning it. When a body is given a soul, life begins. And when the soul leaves the body, life ends and death begins.

During their journeys through this universe, the soul and its body travel through four different worlds:

1. The womb - where the soul joins its body.

2. This world - where we all live for a limited period only.

3. The grave - a ‘Barzakh’ period.

4. The Hereafter - The final destination of all human beings.

Each world is greater than the last, and the final world of the Hereafter is eternal and the most important. It is difficult for us as human beings living amidst the hubbub of worldly life to comprehend the sheer futility of this world and the permanence of the Hereafter. Thousands of dead are buried around us every day, but we find it impossible to envisage the new stage of the journey upon which they have embarked. To the living, the grave is simply an empty and dark hole in the ground; to the dead, it is their window into either Paradise or the Fire. And it is precisely because they cannot comprehend the next life that the majority of human beings refuse to believe in and obey Allah.

In this situation, we are like the fetus in the womb of its mother. Consider the unborn child whose only home for nine months is a dark and cramped place where it receives nourishment, warmth and space to grow. Suppose we could speak to the unborn child; what would we say when describing the world waiting for it outside? We would talk to it about the clouds, the mountains, the trees and the oceans. We would talk of a spectrum of colours, smells, tastes and textures. We would mention the thunder of trains, the roaring of planes, the speed of cars. We would describe flowers, birds and animals; a world of lush gardens, cascading rivers, valleys and plains. An enormous world of huge deserts, massive oceans and vast landscapes. a bustling world filled with noise, movement and numerous nationalities of people speaking a variety of languages.

Would the little infant curled up in it's mother's womb understand the message? Indeed not. The womb is the only place he knows and to imagine the outside world would be beyond his comprehension. In the same way, our life in this world is temporary and like it or not, we will have to leave it to enter the world beyond the grave. Just because we cannot envisage or see the world of the Barzakh does not mean that it does not exist.

Two deaths and two lives

The Qur'an mentions two deaths and two lives given to us by Allah

"How can you reject faith in Allah, seeing that you were dead and He gave you life. Then He will cause you to die, then He will bring you to life, then to Him will be your return."  (Al-Baqarah 2: 28)

"They will say: Our Lord, twice have You given us death and twice have You given us life…"  (Al-Ghafir 40:11)

Soul’s First death

When the soul is first created it has no physical body and is considered to be a dead creature. In this state it is referred to as 'Ruh', and this is the first death as even death is created by Allah.

"He is the one who created Death and life in order that He may try which of you is best in deeds, and He is the Exalted, the Forgiving."   (Al Mulk 67: 2)

The Qur'an also tells us that all the souls of mankind were created before the creation of Adam and were asked to testify to the Lordship of Allah.

"When your Lord drew forth from the loins of the children of Adam their descendants, and made them testify concerning themselves: ‘Am I not your Lord?’. They said, ‘Yes, we do testify.’ This lest you should say on the Day of Judgement: ‘We were not aware of this.’ "  (Al A’raaf 7:172)

The first life begins when the soul is breathed into an embryo in the womb of its mother, and now the soul is referred to as 'Nafs'. The word Nafs is also used for ‘blood’, and so women who are in a state of post-natal bleeding are known as 'Nufasaa’. As long as blood surges healthily through the body, there will be life in that body.

Abdullah ibn Mas’ud reported that the Messenger of Allah (saws) said:

"Indeed the creation of each one of you is brought together in his mother’s belly for forty days in the form of a seed, then he is a clot of blood for a similar period, then a morsel of flesh for a similar period. An angel is then sent to him who blows the breath of life into him..."  (Sahih al-Bukhari and Muslim)

Scholars of Islam have concluded from this hadeeth that because the angel of life blows the soul into the fetus when it is 120 days old, abortion on very strict medical grounds is permissible only before the fetus is 4 months old. Once life has been blown into the fetus it becomes a living creature and to terminate its life is murder.

The second death occurs when the soul leaves the body at the end of its appointed time on earth.

"Every Nafs (soul) shall taste death ...." (Aal Imran 3: 185)

The Nafs dies and is buried, while its soul soars up to the heavens. That is why the Prophet (saws) taught us:

"At death, the eyes follow the departing soul, so close the eyes."

The second life will be the eternal life beginning on the Day of Judgement when the bodies will be resurrected and their souls will be blown into them once again.

After the second life on the Day of Judgment, the death will be slaughtered and then there will be no more death and human will be everlasting (till the time Allah may please).

The Different States of Each Nafs

1.    NAFS AL-MUTAMAINNA – It is the fully Satisfied Soul.

"0 you satisfied soul (27) Return to your Lord pleased with yourself and pleasing to Him (28) Enter among My servants (29) And enter My paradise".   (Al-Fajr 89:27 - 30)     

The Qur'an explains how one can achieve the noble state of the satisfied soul.

"….Indeed, in the remembrance of Allah do hearts find satisfaction." (Al-Ra'd 13: 28)

The Quran is the voice of Al-Rahman just as music is the voice of Satan. If the evil-inspiring soul finds solace in music, dance and its paraphernalia, the satisfied soul finds its peace and consolation in the Quran, prayer and the company of the righteous. The satisfied soul has such a deep conviction in Allah and the Last Day that never is it upset by the sorrows or demands of this world.

During his return from a Jihad expedition, the Prophet (saws) once sat down to rest under the shade of a tree far from his devout companions. A Makkan called Chawrath bin Al Harith saw his golden chance and came forward with his sword drawn: "O Muhammad. Who is going to save you from me now?" Calm and un-fearing, the Prophet (sallallahu alaihe wa-sallam) stood tall and replied simply, "Allah!". The man was surprised into confusion by this simple answer and unconsciously dropped his sword. The Prophet (sallallahu alaihe wa-sallam) immediately picked up the sword and asked, "Tell me who will save you now?". The man quietly answered, "There is no god worthy of worship but Allah."

lllness, financial worries, loss of property or death of dear ones does not cause the satisfied soul to wail, curse or lament. Whenever it faces any problems it simply say, "To Allah we belong and to Him we shall return" and faces the misfortune with patience and trust in its Lord.

Such are the souls described in the Qur'an;

"Be sure, We shall test you with something of fear, hunger, some loss of goods or lives or fruits of your toils. But give glad tidings to those who are patient. (155) Those who say, when afflicted by calamity: "To Allah we belong and to Him we shall return”.   (Al Baqarah 2:155-156)

The satisfied soul believes that all happiness and sorrow is by the decree of Allah. It therefore feels no need to lament at misfortunes or to boast at success.

"No misfortune can happen on earth or to your soul but it is written in a decree before We bring it into existence. That is truly easy for Allah (22) In order that you may not despair over matters that pass you by, nor exult in favors bestowed upon you, for Allah loves not the vain boasters."  (Al Hadid 57: 22-23)

No worldly anxieties upset the satisfied soul. If it fails to acquire something for which it has struggled for many years, it will accept its destiny and remember the following words of the Prophet of Allah (saws):

"What has reached you was never meant to escape you and what has escaped you was never meant to reach you." (Muwadih by Al-Khateeb Al-Baghdadi)

The satisfied soul seeks its nourishment in Dhikr (the remembrance of Allah), prayer, fasting, Zakat and Hajj. It relies heavily for support on the branches of faith, the highest of which is to say and believe in ‘There is no god worthy of worship except Allah and Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah’, and the lowliest of which is to remove an obstacle from the path. Angels are present to strengthen this soul and to bless and greet it when it departs this material life, when it is resurrected and when it is admitted into the gardens of paradise. Their greeting to it is the greeting of a Muslim to his fellow Muslim: ‘Peace be unto you’;

"And those who feared their Lord will be led to the Paradise in crowds; until they arrive there, its gates are opened and its keepers will say: ‘Peace be upon you! Well have you done. Enter here and dwell forever."   (Az Zumar 39: 73)

2.    NAFS AL AMMARA BIS SU' – It is the soul that dictates evil.

"And I do not free myself from blame. Indeed the human self is inclined to evil, except when my Lord bestows His Mercy (upon whom He wills). Indeed my Lord is Forgiving, Merciful." (Yusuf 12:53)

In contrast this soul which earns the company of Satan because it ignores the remembrance of Allah.

"The one who withdraws himself from the remembrance of the Merciful, We appoint for him a Satan to be a companion to him." (Az-Zukhruf 43:36)

Satan’s cohorts and tunes surround the evil soul day and night. It drives from one satanic act to other. You will see it lying and cheating, wasting time on leisure and sports, frequenting cinemas and concerts, listening to music and dancing.

As one contemporary writer said, "The godless society’s motto is ‘work and play', while the motto of the god-conscious society is, ‘work and pray’ "!

3. NAFS AL LAWWAMA – It is the Self-reproaching soul.

"I do call to witness the Resurrection Day (1) And I do call to witness the self-reproaching Soul."   (Al Qiyamah 75:1-2)

The noblest of the souls is the satisfied soul, which at its last moments on earth will receive the glad news from its lord of "Enter among My servants and enter into my Paradise." In contrast is the soul, which inspires evil and disobedience. And between these two extreme states is the self-reproaching soul, which checks its actions and blames itself when it commits evil. Most souls hover between these different states depending on the person’s faith and actions.

The self-reproaching soul succumbs to evil inspirations but then regrets its actions and reproaches itself for being weak and vulnerable. These feelings of remorse cause it to turn back to Allah, to repent sincerely, and to receive spiritual solace. It is better for each Nafs to blame itself whenever it commits a wrong. If not, it will find itself being blamed from all those around it. Consider how the self-reproaching soul is mentioned with the Day of Resurrection in the Qur'an.

"I do call to witness the Resurrection Day (1) And I do call to witness the self-reproaching soul."   (Al Qiyarnah 75:1-2)

There is a common factor between these two entities, which is that both are courts of justice. The Nafs al Lawwama is an inner court of justice within each person; when he acts wrongfully. His conscience or soul reprimands him, and it is then up to him to pay heed to it or to ignore it. Besides placing an inner court of justice within each person, the Creator has also prepared a larger Court, which will operate on the Final Day and will mete out justice to all of mankind.

What You Sow you will Reap.

The man who believes that there is no afterlife and that he will not be accountable in a divine court becomes a slave of this world. He hankers after its comforts and luxuries, and will break any laws that stand between him and success. In his desperate quest for more wealth, he will refuse to differentiate between halal and haram. The tyrants and criminals of this world operate in the same manner. If to achieve their goals requires murder and violence, then so be it. The Bosnian Serbs were among the twentieth century’s worst examples of barbarity and tyranny; led by a pathological lust for more land, their evil knew no bounds.

In contrast is the man who believes in Allah and in the questioning of the Last Day. He fears his Creator’s wrath and desires his Lord’s favors. Certainty of belief in paradise and hell guides his entire life, not just the moments spent in prayer. To him this world is merely a short journey, the destination of which is the Hereafter. Thus he directs most of his efforts towards earning Paradise and devotes only part of his time to earning his bread in this world. He is constantly aware of his divine mission to call the misguided people around him to Islam and so he buries himself in da’wah work.

Belief in the Hereafter is the catalyst which stimulates the souls seeking a better future and its importance has been emphasized in the Qur'an repeatedly. The true believers have been described as those who have firm faith in the Hereafter, because that will be the true life.

"What is the life of this world but amusement and p lay? But indeed the home of the Hereafter is the true Life, if only they knew." (Al Ankabut 29:64)

The Ultimate Success is not in amassing fortunes, being famous or having a fantastic career, but success is in escaping the fires of hell.

"Every soul shall taste death, and only on the Day of Judgement will you receive your full recompense. The one who is saved from the Fire and admitted into Paradise will have attained success, for the life of the world is nothing but the goods of deception.   (Aal Imran 3:185)

The Messenger of Allah (saws) declared that wise is the man who reminds himself constantly of the accountability on the Day of Resurrection and so works hard for the life succeeding death. And stupid is the man whose only concerns are the transient desires and comforts of this life.

The Prophet (saws) also described this world as a farm for the 'Akhira.' (Hereafter). Whatever you sow in this world, you shall reap in the Hereafter. In order that people may not become complacent that the Day of Judgement is far away in the distant future, he advised each person to remember that his Judgement will begin on the day he dies.

Experiences of the Soul after Death

The New World of Barzakh begins when the person’s soul leaves his body and his short life on this earth comes to an end. The dying man experiences things which cannot be comprehended by the people around him. As his soul leaves his body through his nostrils, his eyes follow his soul. For this reason, the Prophet (saws) advised the people to close the eyes of the deceased to make his appearance less ghastly. Allah Almighty says about this moment of dying.

“Then why do ye not (intervene) when (the soul of the dying man) reaches the throat (83) And ye the while (sit) looking on (84) But We are nearer to him than ye, and yet see not (85) Then why do ye not,- If you are exempt from (future) account (86) Call back the soul, if ye are true (in the claim of independence)?”  (Al-Waqia 56: 83 - 87)  

As the person dies and enters a New World, a window into the 'Akhira' is opened for him to allow his soul to view Heaven and Hell. Death is a time of truth and the lies with which disbelievers surround themselves in this world are exposed. These lies include the denial of the existence of Allah, rejection of the punishment of the grave, and denial of the Day of Judgement.

So when death comes to the disbelievers and they feel the heat of the raging fires of hell, they begin to plead for a second chance on earth to do good. But all their pleading is in vain.

"Until, when death comes to one of them, he says, ‘O my Lord. Send me back to life (99) In order that I may do good deeds in the things that I neglected.’ By no means! It is but a word he says. And before them is a barzakh until the day they are raised up."  (Al Mu’minun 23:99-100)

The journey of the soul from the earth to heaven where it meets its Lord is described vividly in the following hadith:

Al-Bara b. ‘Azib said: We went out with the Prophet (saws) to the funeral of a man of the Ansar and came to the grave. It had not yet been dug, so Allah’s Messenger (saws) sat down and we sat down around him quietly. He had in his hand a stick with which he was making marks on the round. Then he raised his head and said, "Seek refuge in Allah from the punishment of the grave; saying it twice or thrice. He then said, "When a believer is about to leave the world and go forward to the next world, angels with faces white as the sun come down to him from heaven with one of the shrouds of paradise and some of the perfume of paradise and sit away from him as far as the eye can see. Then the angel of death comes and sits at his head and says, ‘Good soul, come out to forgiveness and acceptance from Allah.’ It then comes out as a drop flows from a water-skin and he seizes it; and when he does so they do not leave it in his hand for an instant, but take it and place it in that shroud and that perfume, and from it there comes forth a fragrance like that of the sweetest musk found on the face of the earth. They then take it up and do not bring it past a company of angels without their asking, "Who is this good soul?’ to which they reply, ‘So and so, the son of so and so’, using the best names by which people called him on the earth. They then bring him to the lowest heaven and ask that the gate should be opened for him. This is done, and from every heaven its archangels escort him to the next heaven until it is brought to the seventh heaven, and Allah who is great and glorious says, ‘Record the book of my servant in Illiyyun and take him back to earth, for I created mankind from it, I shall return them into it, and from it I shall bring them forth another time.’ His soul is then restored to his body, two angels come to him, and making him sit up say to him, ‘ Who is our Lord’ He replies, ‘My Lord is Allah.’ They ask, ‘What is your religion?’ and he replies, ‘My religion is Islam.’ They ask, ‘Who is this man who was sent among you?’ and he replies, ‘He is Allah’s Messenger.’ They ask, ‘What is your [source of] knowledge?’ and he replies, ‘I have read Allah’s Book, believed in it and declared it to be true.’ Then one cries from heaven, ‘My servant has spoken the truth, so spread out carpets for him from paradise, and open a gate for him into paradise.’ Then some of its joy and its fragrance comes to him, his grave is made spacious for him as far as the eye can see, and a man with a beautiful face, beautiful garments and a sweet odor comes to him and says, ‘Rejoice in what pleases you for this is your day which you have been promised.’ He asks, ‘Who are you, for your face is perfectly beautiful and brings good?" He replies, ‘I am your good deeds.’ He then says, ‘My Lord, bring the last hour; my Lord, bring the last hour, so that I may return to my people and my property.’

But when an infidel is about to leave the world and proceed to the next world, angels with black faces come down to him from heaven with hair-cloth and sit away from him as far as the eye can see. Then the angel of death comes and sits at his head and says, ‘Wicked soul, come out to displeasure from Allah.’ Then it becomes dissipated in his body, and he draws it out as a spit is drawn out from moistened wool. He then seizes it, and when he does so they do not leave it in his hand for an instant, but put it in that hair-cloth and from it comes forth a stench like the most offensive corpse found on the face of the earth. They then take it up and do not bring it past a company of angels without their saying, ‘Who is this wicked soul?’ to which they reply, ‘So and so, the son of so and so’, using the worst names that he was called in the world. When he is brought to the lowest heaven, request is made that the gate be opened for him, but it is not opened for him. (Allah’s Messenger (saws) then recited, ‘The gates of heaven will not be opened for them and they will not enter paradise until a camel can pass through the eye of a needle.’ Allah who is most Great and Glorious then says, ‘Record his book in Sijjin in the lowest earth,’ and his soul is thrown down. (He (saws) then recited, ‘He who assigns partners to Allah is as if he had fallen down from heaven and been snatched up by the birds, or made to fall by the wind in a place far distant.’ His soul is then restored to his body, two angels come to him, and making him sit up say to him, ‘Who is your Lord?’ He replies, ‘Alas, alas, I do not know.’ They ask, ‘What is your religion?’ He replies, ‘Alas, alas, I do not know.’ They ask ‘Who is this man who was sent among you?’ He replies, Alas, alas, I do not know.’ Then one cries out from heaven, ‘He has lied, so spread out carpets from hell for him, and open a gate for him into hell.’ Then some of its heat and hot air comes to him, his grave is made narrow for him so that his ribs are pressed together in it and a man with an ugly face, ugly garments and an offensive odor come to him and says, Be grieved with what displeases you, for this is your day which you have been promised.’ He asks ‘Who are you, for your face is most ugly and brings evil?’ He replies, ‘l am your wicked deeds.’ He then says, My Lord, do not bring the last hour.’

In another version there is something similar containing this addition:

"When his soul comes out every angel between heaven and earth and every angel in heaven invoke blessings on him, and the gates of heaven are opened for him, no guardians of a gate failing to supplicate God that his soul may be taken up beyond them. But his soul, i.e., the infidel’s, is pulled out along with the veins and every angel between heaven and earth and every angel in heaven curse him, and the gates of heaven are locked, no guardians of a gate failing to supplicate God that his soul may not be taken up beyond them."   (Ahmad transmitted it)

The person who answers the questions correctly and is destined for paradise will feel that his grave is expanding and becoming a garden of paradise. The angels will tell him gently, "Sleep like the sleep of a bride."

But the person who fails to answer the questions correctly will feel the grave closing in on him and a door into hell will be opened for him. His mortal body will decompose and eventually disappear into the ground, but his soul will continue to feel the punishment it earned in its life on earth. The punishment of the grave is the first hurdle the person has to overcome after death, and if he overcomes it easily, the rest of his trial on the Day of Judgement will be similarly easy. For this reason, the Messenger of Allah (saws) used to recite the following du’aa frequently :

"My Lord, I seek refuge in You from the punishment of the grave, and seek refuge in You from the torture of the hell fire, and I seek refuge in You from the trials of the false messiah, and I seek refuge in You from the trials of living and dying."

Zaid b. Thabit narrated that the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihe wa-sallam) and his Companions were passing through a belonging to the Banu An Najjar when the Prophet (sallallahu alaihe wa-sallam) mount shied and almost unseated him. They were close to a few graves in which polytheist were buried, so the Prophet (sallallahu alaihe wa-sallam) said, "These , , people are being tortured in their graves, and were it not that you would stop burying your dead, I would ask Allah to let you hear the punishment in the grave which I can hear."

(Saheeh Muslim)

The Soul's Journey in Brief

1. To sum up the evidence, it is clear that the souls of all people, believers and unbelievers, are taken up to the heavens at the time of death by angels and presented to Allah Almighty.

2. The record of the believer’s deeds is placed in a high place in heaven called Illiyyin and the sinner’s record is thrown into the lowest earth known as Sijjin.

"Nay! Truly the record of the evil-doers is preserved in Sijjin (7) And what will explain to you what Sijjin is? (8) A register inscribed”.   (Al-Mutaffifin :7-9)

“Nay! Truly the record of the pious is preserved in Illiyyin. (18) And what will make you know what Illiyyin is? (19) A Register inscribed (20) To which bear witness those nearest to Allah (i.e. the angels)."  (Al-Mutaffifin  83:18-21)

3. The souls are returned to their bodies temporarily for questioning by the angels.

4. When the soul returns, the dead person is able to hear the retreating footsteps of the men who came to bury him. This is an exception to the general rule in the Qur'an that the dead cannot hear the living.

"Verily, you cannot make the dead to hear, nor can you make the deaf hear the call when they flee, turning their backs."  (An Naml 27:80)

"Nor are alike the living and the dead. Verily, Allah makes whom He will hear, but you cannot make those in the graves hear."   (Fatir 35:22)

5. The blessed soul is taken to the heavens where it is changed into a bird and eats freely from the fruits in paradise. It rests in a state of peaceful sleep while the cool breezes of paradise flow gently over it. In contrast is the sinner’s soul, which is thrown with contempt into the lowest earth to feel the savage heat and stench of hell. Both kinds of soul reside in the same places as their Records of deeds.

6. The torture of the grave is for the soul, but if Allah Wills, it can also be felt by the body. The human body has to decay and decompose into the ground, but as the punishment of the grave is for the soul, it can continue until the Last Day.

Common Questions Answered

1. Groups of Muslims claim that the questioning in the grave is proved only by hadeeth literature and not by the Qur'an. To reply to them, consider the following verse of Surah Ibrahim :

"Allah will keep firm those who believe, with the Word that stands firm in this world and in the Hereafter. And Allah will cause the wrongdoers to go astray. and Allah does what He wills."   (Ibrahim 14:27)

The first stage of the Hereafter is the time of Barzakh, the period between death and resurrection. The Prophet (saws), as narrated by Al-Baraa bin Aazib, explained that the believers will be aided in standing firm with their answers in the grave when the angels Munkar and Nakir come to question them, while the wrong-doers will falter at this critical time.

2. The same group of Muslims claim that the punishment or bliss of the grave are also proven only from hadeeth and not from the Quran. Our reply is that the punishment of the grave is mentioned in a number of Quranic verses:

(a) Pharaoh and his followers have been exposed to the Fires of Hell every morning and evening since their deaths, and they will continue to suffer in this manner until the Day of Resurrection. On that day they will actually enter the fire.

"The Fire; they are exposed to it morning and evening. And on the Day when the Hour will be established, it will be said: Cause Pharaoh’s people to enter the most severe torment." (Al Ghafir 40: 46).

(b) "Because of their sins they were drowned, then (immediately) were made to enter the Fire, and they found none to help them without Allah."  (Nuh 71:25)

The disbelievers from the people of Nuh were drowned and then immediately thrown into the Fire. According to Arabic grammar, the letter ‘fa’ in this verse indicates immediacy. As the Day of Judgement is still in the future, the punishment, which began, immediately after Nuh’s people drowned must be the punishment in Barzakh.

(c) "And among the Bedouins around you (0 Muhammad), some are hypocrites and so are some among the people of Madina. They exaggerate and persist in hypocrisy. You know them not, but We know them. We shall then punish them twice, and thereafter they shall be brought back to a severe torment".   (Al Tawba 9:101)

Abdullah bin Abbas explained in his tafseer of this verse that the disbelievers and hypocrites would be tortured twice before their chastisement on the Day of Judgement. The first will be a wretched life on this earth, and the second will be in Barzakh.

"…. And if you could see when the wrong-doers are in the agonies of death while the angels are stretching forth their hands saying, ‘Deliver your souls! This day you shall be recompensed with the torment of degradation because of what you used to utter against Allah other than the truth…." (Al An’am 6:93)

A disgraceful punishment is promised the day their souls leave their bodies. The use of the word ‘today’ indicates that the torture will be immediate, and as such cannot be referring to the Day of Judgement but to the time in the grave.

"And if you could see when the angels take away the souls of the disbelievers, they beat their faces and their backs, (saying) ‘Taste the punishment of the blazing Fire (50) This is because of that which your hands had sent forward. And indeed, Allah is not unjust to His slaves." (Al Anfal 8:50-51)

"Then how will it be when the angels will take their souls at death, beating their faces and their backs?" (Muhammad 47:27)

Both the above verses speak of a beating by the angels immediately after death.

3. The rewards and bliss of the grave are also mentioned by the Qur'an. For example, the story is told of a man who warned a prophet that his enemies were plotting to kill him. When the disbelievers realized that the man had betrayed them, they punished him and viciously put him to death. Immediately after his death the man was told to enter paradise and when he saw the luxuries and wonders of paradise, the man wished he could tell his people about his happy fate.

"It was said to him (when the disbelievers killed him): ‘Enter Paradise’. He said: ‘Would that my people knew (26) that my Lord has forgiven me and made me one of the honored ones."  (Ya Sin 36:26-27)

The real Paradise will reveal all its favors and wonders on the Day of Judgement, but this man received only a taste of paradise in his grave which gave him such rapturous joy.

"Those whose lives the angels take while they are in a pious state, saying to them, ‘Peace be upon you, enter Paradise because of the good which you used to do in the world". (Al Nahl 16:32)

"Think not of those who are killed in the Way of Allah as dead! Nay! They are alive, with their Lord, where they have provisions (169) They rejoice what Allah has bestowed upon them from His bounties. Rejoicing for the sake of those who have not yet joined them but are left behind (not yet martyred) that on them no fear shall come nor shall they grieve."  (Al Imran 3:169-170)

The life of the martyrs is not like the life on earth. The Messenger of Allah (saws) explained this further in the following narration.

"Their souls are in the crops of green birds which are in lamps suspended from the Throne of Allah, which fly where they wish in Paradise and then return to these lamp. Their Lord looks on them and asks whether they desire anything, and they ask in reply what they wish when they can go where they like in Paradise. He asks them three times, and when they see they will not be left until they ask something, they tell their Lord that they wish Him to return their souls to their bodies so that they may be killed in His path again. Then when He that they lack nothing they are left without further questioning."  (Transmitted by Muslim)

Excerpted, with some modifications, from: http://www.missionislam.com/knowledge/Soul.htm

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5. NAFS AND ITS KINDS

Question :

What is human “Nafs” by Quran?  What are its kinds?

Answer :

There is some difference in the way the words 'Ruh' and 'Nafs' are used. The 'Ruh' is the subtle spirit, which resides in the heavens and needs a physical body to carry it on the earth. When this spirit is given a body, life begins and it is described as 'Nafs'. The word 'Nafs' is used in a number of ways by the Qur'an, all of which imply the meaning of a soul with a body.

1. 'Nafs' meaning "Self."

"…. You know what is in my self but I do not know what is in Your self…."  (Al-Ma’ida 5:116)

2. Nafs means a strong force in human, which can push him either towards good or evil.

There is concept of 'Nafs al Ammara bis Su' ('Nafs' which encourages evil) and 'Nafs al Lawwama' ('Nafs' which blames) and 'Nafs al Mutmainna' ('Nafs' which is contented).

The Different States of Each Nafs

3.    NAFS AL-MUTAMAINNA – It is the fully Satisfied Soul.

"0 you satisfied soul (27) Return to your Lord pleased with yourself and pleasing to Him (28) Enter among My servants (29) And enter My paradise".   (Al-Fajr 89:27 - 30)     

The Qur'an explains how one can achieve the noble state of the satisfied soul.

"….Indeed, in the remembrance of Allah do hearts find satisfaction." (Al-Ra'd 13:28)

The Qur'an is the voice of Al-Rahman just as music is the voice of Satan. If the evil-inspiring soul finds solace in music, dance and its paraphernalia, the satisfied soul finds its peace and consolation in the Qur'an, prayer and the company of the righteous. The satisfied soul has such a deep conviction in Allah and the Last Day that never is it upset by the sorrows or demands of this world.

During his return from a Jihad expedition, the Prophet (saws) once sat down to rest under the shade of a tree far from his devout companions. A Makkan called Chawrath bin Al Harith saw his golden chance and came forward with his sword drawn: "O Muhammad. Who is going to save you from me now?" Calm and un-fearing, the Prophet (sallallahu alaihe wa-sallam) stood tall and replied simply, "Allah!". The man was surprised into confusion by this simple answer and unconsciously dropped his sword. The Prophet (sallallahu alaihe wa-sallam) immediately picked up the sword and asked, "Tell me who will save you now?". The man quietly answered, "There is no god worthy of worship but Allah."

lllness, financial worries, loss of property or death of dear ones does not cause the satisfied soul to wail, curse or lament. Whenever it faces any problems it simply say, "To Allah we belong and to Him we shall return" and faces the misfortune with patience and trust in its Lord.

Such are the souls described in the Quran:

"Be sure, We shall test you with something of fear, hunger, some loss of goods or lives or fruits of your toils. But give glad tidings to those who are patient. (155) Those who say, when afflicted by calamity: "To Allah we belong and to Him we shall return”.   (Al Baqarah 2:155-156)

The satisfied soul believes that all happiness and sorrow is by the decree of Allah. It therefore feels no need to lament at misfortunes or to boast at success.

"No misfortune can happen on earth or to your soul but it is written in a decree before We bring it into existence. That is truly easy for Allah (22) In order that you may not despair over matters that pass you by, nor exult in favors bestowed upon you, for Allah loves not the vain boasters."  (Al Hadid 57:22-23)

No worldly anxieties upset the satisfied soul. If it fails to acquire something for which it has struggled for many years, it will accept its destiny and remember the following words of the Prophet of Allah (saws):

"What has reached you was never meant to escape you and what has escaped you was never meant to reach you." (Muwadih by Al-Khateeb Al-Baghdadi)

The satisfied soul seeks its nourishment in Dhikr (the remembrance of Allah), prayer, fasting, Zakat and Hajj. It relies heavily for support on the branches of faith, the highest of which is to say and believe in ‘There is no god worthy of worship except Allah and Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah’, and the lowliest of which is to remove an obstacle from the path. Angels are present to strengthen this soul and to bless and greet it when it departs this material life, when it is resurrected and when it is admitted into the gardens of paradise. Their greeting to it is the greeting of a Muslim to his fellow Muslim: ‘Peace be unto you’;

"And those who feared their Lord will be led to the Paradise in crowds; until they arrive there, its gates are opened and its keepers will say: ‘Peace be upon you! Well have you done. Enter here and dwell forever."   (Az Zumar 39:73)

4.    NAFS AL AMMARA BIS SU' – It is the soul that dictates evil.

"And I do not free myself from blame. Indeed the human self is inclined to evil, except when my Lord bestows His Mercy (upon whom He wills). Indeed my Lord is Forgiving, Merciful." (Yusuf 12:53)

In contrast this soul which earns the company of Satan because it ignores the remembrance of Allah.

"The one who withdraws himself from the remembrance of the Merciful, We appoint for him a Satan to be a companion to him." (Az-Zukhruf 43:36)

Satan’s cohorts and tunes surround the evil soul day and night. It drives from one satanic act to other. You will see it lying and cheating, wasting time on leisure and sports, frequenting cinemas and concerts, listening to music and dancing.

As one contemporary writer said, "The godless society’s motto is ‘work and play', while the motto of the god-conscious society is, ‘work and pray’ "!

3. NAFS AL LAWWAMA – It is the Self-reproaching soul.

"I do call to witness the Resurrection Day (1) And I do call to witness the self-reproaching Soul."   (Al Qiyamah 75:1-2)

The noblest of the souls is the satisfied soul, which at its last moments on earth will receive the glad news from its lord of "Enter among My servants and enter into my Paradise." In contrast is the soul, which inspires evil and disobedience. And between these two extreme states is the self-reproaching soul, which checks its actions and blames itself when it commits evil. Most souls hover between these different states depending on the person’s faith and actions.

The self-reproaching soul succumbs to evil inspirations but then regrets its actions and reproaches itself for being weak and vulnerable. These feelings of remorse cause it to turn back to Allah, to repent sincerely, and to receive spiritual solace. It is better for each Nafs to blame itself whenever it commits a wrong. If not, it will find itself being blamed from all those around it. Consider how the self-reproaching soul is mentioned with the Day of Resurrection in the Quran.

"I do call to witness the Resurrection Day (1) And I do call to witness the self-reproaching soul."   (Al Qiyarnah 75:1-2)

There is a common factor between these two entities, which is that both are courts of justice. The Nafs al Lawwama is an inner court of justice within each person; when he acts wrongfully. His conscience or soul reprimands him, and it is then up to him to pay heed to it or to ignore it. Besides placing an inner court of justice within each person, the Creator has also prepared a larger Court, which will operate on the Final Day and will mete out justice to all of mankind.

Excerpted, with some modifications, from: http://www.missionislam.com/knowledge/Soul.htm

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6. WHO IS A SAHABI?

( A Companion of Prophet Muhammad )

Question:

Who is a Sahabi?

Answer:

The Jumhur (vast majority) - define the Sahabi as one who

1. Saw the Prophet even for a split second.
2. Believed in him when seeing him.
3. Died a Muslim.

One who saw the Prophet  while being a disbeliever, then believed in him only after the time of the Prophet , is a Tabi`i. The latter case is the rare instance mentioned by the scholars of "a Tabi`i who saw the Prophet ."

And Allah knows best.

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7. WHAT IS THE SUNNAH?


Question:

What is the Sunnah? For the new and prospective Muslim, how should one interpret the Sunnah? Should it be considered the emulation, or imitation rather of His (saw) actions or the striving of the state of His (saw) character?

Answer:  Praise be to Allah .

Sunna, pl. sunan: "Road" or "practice (s)." Standard practice, primarily of the Prophet sallAllahu `alayhi wa-Alihi wa-Sallam, including his sayings, deeds, tacit approvals or disapprovals. Hadith Scholars add his personal traits - including physical features - to this definition.

The "sciences of the Sunna" (`ulum al-Sunna) refer to the biography of the Prophet MHMD(sira), the chronicle of his battles (maghazi), his everyday sayings and acts or "ways" (sunan) including his personal and moral qualities (shama'il), and the host of the ancillary hadith sciences such as the circumstances of occurrence (asbab al-wurud), knowledge of the abrogating and abrogated hadith, difficult words (gharib al-hadith), narrator criticism (al-jarh wal-ta`dil), narrator-biographies (al-rijal), etc. This meaning is used in contradistinction to the Qur'an in expressions such as "Qur'an and Sunna" and applies in the usage of hadith Scholars.

"The Sunna in our definition consists in the reports transmitted from the Messenger of Allah MHMD, and the Sunna is the commentary (tafsir) of the Qur'an and contains its directives (dala'il)" (Imam Ahmad).

The early Sunni hadith Masters such as Abu Dawud and Abu Nasr al-Marwazi also used the term "the Sunna" in the narrow sense to refer to Sunni Doctrine as opposed to the creeds of non-Sunni sects.

In the terminology of usul al-fiqh or principles of jurisprudence, sunna denotes a saying (qawl), action (fi'l) or approval (taqrir) related from (nuqila `an) the Prophet MHMDor issuing (sadara) from him other than the Qur'an.

In the terminology of fiqh or jurisprudence, sunna denotes whatever is firmly established (thabata) as called for (matlub) in the Religion on the basis of a legal proof (dalil shar`i) but without being obligatory, the continued abandonment of which constitutes disregard (istikhfaf) of the Religion and sin, and incurs blame (lawm, `itab, tadlil) - also punishment (`uquba) according to some jurists.

Some made a distinction between what they called "Emphasized Sunna" (sunna mu'akkada) or "Sunna of Guidance" (sunnat al-huda), such as what the Prophet MHMDordered or emphasized in word or in deed, and other types of Sunna considered less binding in their legal status, such as what they called "Non-Emphasized Sunna" (sunna ghayr mu'akkada) and "Sunna of Habit" (sunnat al-`ada).

The above jurisprudential meanings of Sunna are used in contradistinction to the other four of the five legal categories for human actions - fard ("obligatory"), mubah ("indifferent"), makruh ("offensive"), haram ("prohibited") - and apply in the usage of jurists from the second Hijri century.

More on the Sunna as binding evidence (Hujjiyyat al-Sunna) at:

http://www.sunnah.org/fiqh/usul/probativeness_sunna/Default.htm
& < at living islam : islamic tradition >

And Allah knows best. 

Was-Salam
Hajj Gibril Haddad

Excerpted, with slight modifications, from: http://www.livingislam.org/

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8. GOING TO CHINA FOR KNOWLEDGE

Question:

Does this hadith "Even if you have to go to China to earn knowledge, go" is sound and applied to woman too?

Answer: Praise be to Allah.

With regard to the hadeeth mentioned, “Seek knowledge even if you have to go as far as China, for seeking knowledge is a duty on every Muslim,” Shaykh al-Albaani said in Da’eef al-Jaami’: “(It is) fabricated.” (no. 906). 

The proven hadeeth is that which was narrated by Ibn Maajah from the hadeeth of Anas ibn Maalik, who said: “The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: ‘Seeking knowledge is obligatory upon every Muslim.’” (220. Classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh Sunan Ibn Maajah. What is meant by knowledge here is knowledge of sharee’ah (Islamic knowledge). Al-Thawri said: “It is the knowledge for which no person has any excuse for not knowing.” And Allah knows best.

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9. importance of elm (EDUCATION)

Question:

They are many ahadeeths describing the importance of elm , (education, science) and that scientists will have a great reward, so what's meant by elm? Is it just the forensic elm that's mentioned in ahadeeths or could it be any kind of elm like biology, physics, electronics etc?

Answer: Praise be to Allah. 

The knowledge mentioned here is the knowledge of sharee’ah which is derived from the Qur’aan and Sunnah. This is the legacy of the Prophets, for the Prophets did not leave behind dirhams and dinars (money), rather they only left behind knowledge. Whoever learns it gains a great deal. When the texts commend knowledge, what is meant is knowledge of the Qur’aan, Sunnah and sharee’ah. This also includes knowledge of nahw (grammar), i.e., the Arabic language, because it is the language of the Qur’aan: knowledge of how inheritances are to be shared out (faraa’id); acts of worship (‘ibaadaat); interactions with others (mu’aamalaat); punishments prescribed in sharee’ah (hudood); the shar’i literature and Arabic literature, for it is the biography of the close friends (awliya’) of Allah and His righteous slaves. Similarly it is important to know the means to this knowledge, such as Usool al-Fiqh, tawheed, ‘Aqeedah, the basic principles of Islam, etc.

With regard to other, worldly sciences which the Muslims need to know, there is no doubt that they come under the heading of fard kifaayah (communal obligation, i.e., if some of the community does it, the rest are absolved of the obligation); those who are able to learn them are obliged to do so, thus fulfilling the obligation of fard kifaayah, because the people are in need of that, so long as that does not prevent them from learning the things that they are obliged to know. Undoubtedly there is benefit in sciences such as biology, chemistry, etc. Many of the scholars were of the view that it is obligatory to learn necessary crafts and industries, and there should be enough people who have these skills, such as blacksmiths, tailors, barbers, etc.

Shaykh ‘Abd-Allah ibn Jibreen

And the sciences which Muslims are in need of, such as military skills, are even more essential and more obligatory. And Allah knows best.

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10. DID ARABS KNOW ABOUT ALLAH BEFORE THE PROPHET

Question:

We know that Holy Prophet's()father name was Abdullah & he had passed away before Prophet's birth.With this background please tell that what was the concept in arabs about "ALLAH"before prophet.Were they familiar to this word before prophet's birth?How did they differentiate Allah from idols,if at all they did?

Answer:

You should note that Arabian societies before Islam were not atheistic societies that denied the existence of Allah, or societies that were unaware that there is a Lord, Creator and Provider. They knew that, and they still retained some traces of the religion of Ibraheem, and they had contact with Jews and Christians. But their problem was that they did not worship Allah Alone in exclusion to others; they had other gods whom they associated in worship with Him, and which they worshipped not on the basis that they were the Lord, the Creator the Provider, but because they claimed that these were intermediaries who would intercede between them and Allah and bring them closer to Allah. Hence Allah said concerning them (interpretation of the meaning):

“And if you (O Muhammad) ask them: ‘Who has created the heavens and the earth,’ they will certainly say: ‘Allah....” [Luqmaan 31:25]

This indicates that they acknowledged that Allah is the Creator. Another aayah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“And verily, if you ask them: ‘Who created the heavens and the earth?’ Surely, they will say: ‘Allah (has created them)....” [Az-Zumar 39:38]  

Many aayaat indicated that they believed in the Unity of Lordship (Tawheed al-Ruboobiyyah); their shirk was with regard to divinity (uloohiyyah), as Allah says concerning them (interpretation of the meaning):

“And those who take Awliyaa’ (protectors, helpers, lords, gods) besides Him (say): ‘We worship them only that they may bring us near to Allah....’” [Az-Zumar 39:3] 

i.e., they said, we only worship them so that they may bring us closer to Allah.

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11. BONDS OF ISLAM WILL BE UNDONE

Question :

The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, “The bonds of Islam will be undone one by one. Each time one bond is undone, the people will move to the next one (and adhere to that). The first bond to be undone will be ruling (al-hukm) and the last one will be prayer (al-salaah).” What does this hadeeth mean? And what is meant by the undoing of ruling (al-hukm)?

Answer: Praise be to Allah. 

The hadeeth mentioned was narrated by Imaam Ahmad in his Musnad, al-Tabaraani in al-Mu’jam al-Kabeer, and Ibn Hibbaan in his Saheeh, with a jayyid isnaad from Abu Umaamah al-Baahili (may Allah be pleased with him) from the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), who said:

“The bonds of Islam will be undone one by one. Each time one bond is undone, the people will move to the next one (and adhere to that). The first bond to be undone will be ruling (al-hukm) and the last one will be prayer (al-salaah).”  

The meaning of this hadeeth is apparent, which is that the more Islam becomes “strange”, the more people will go against its teachings and will undo its bonds, which is a reference to its obligations and commandments. As the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “Islam began as a stranger and will go back to being a stranger as it started, so give glad tidings to the strangers.” (Narrated by Muslim in his Saheeh).

 The meaning of the phrase “the first bond to be undone will be ruling (al-hukm)” is apparent; it refers to the failure to rule according to the sharee’ah of Allah. This is what is happening today in most of the so-called Muslim countries. It is known that what is obligatory upon all is to rule according to the sharee’ah of Allah in all things, and to beware of ruling according to laws and customs which go against the sharee’ah, because Allah says (interpretation of the meaning): 

“But no, by your Lord, they can have no Faith, until they make you (O Muhammad) judge in all disputes between them, and find in themselves no resistance against your decisions, and accept (them) with full submission [An-Nisaa’ 4:65]

“And so judge (you O Muhammad) among them by what Allah has revealed and follow not their vain desires, but beware of them lest they turn you (O Muhammad) far away from some of that which Allah has sent down to you. And if they turn away, then know that Allah’s Will is to punish them for some sins of theirs. And truly, most of men are Faasiqoon (rebellious and disobedient to Allah). [Al-Maa’idah 5:49] 

Do they then seek the judgement of (the days of) Ignorance? And who is better in judgement than Allah for a people who have firm Faith” [Al-Maa’idah 5:50] 

“....And whosoever does not judge by what Allah has revealed, such are the Kaafiroon (i.e. disbelievers — of a lesser degree as they do not act on Allah’s Laws)" [Al-Maa’idah 5:44]

It was We who revealed the law (to Moses): therein was guidance and light. By its standard have been judged the Jews, by the prophets who bowed (as in Islam) to Allah's will, by the rabbis and the doctors of law: for to them was entrusted the protection of Allah's book, and they were witnesses thereto: therefore fear not men, but fear me, and sell not my signs for a miserable price. If any do fail to judge by (the light of) what Allah hath revealed, they are (no better than) Unbelievers.

“....And whosoever does not judge by that which Allah has revealed, such are the Zaalimoon (polytheists and wrongdoers — of a lesser degree”). [Al-Maa’idah 5:45]

“....And whosoever does not judge by what Allah has revealed (then) such (people) are the Faasiqoon [the rebellious i.e. disobedient (of a lesser degree)] to Allah    [Al-Maa’idah 5:47]

The scholars (may Allah have mercy on them) explained that the rulers of the Muslims are obliged to rule according to the sharee’ah of Allah in all the Muslims’ affairs and in all the conflicts that arise among them, in obedience to these verses. They explained that the one who rules by anything other than that which Allah revealed, if he believes that it is permissible for him to do so, is guilty of major kufr which puts him beyond the pale of Islam…

But if he believes that this is not permissible, but he rules by something other than that which Allah revealed for a bribe or for some other purpose, although he believed that that is not permissible, and that it is obligatory to rule according to that which Allah revealed, then he is guilty of lesser kufr, lesser zulm and lesser fisq.

 We ask Allah, may He be glorified, to make all the Muslim rulers rule and judge according to the sharee’ah and to make their people adhere to it, and to cause them to beware of whatever goes against it, for He is the Most Generous, Most Kind. Undoubtedly ruling according to sharee’ah and acting in accordance with it is in our best interests in this world and in the Hereafter, and will be a source of pride in this world and in the Hereafter. It will keep us safe from the plots of our enemies and help us to be victorious over them, as Allah says (interpretation of the meanings):

“O you who believe! If you help (in the cause of) Allah, He will help you, and make your foothold firm” [Muhammad 47:7]

 “....and (as for) the believers, it was incumbent upon Us to help (them)” [Ar-Room 30:47]

 “....Verily, Allah will help those who help His (Cause). Truly, Allah is All‑Strong, All‑Mighty. (40) Those (Muslim rulers) who, if We give them power in the land, (they) enjoin Iqaamat‑as‑Salaah [i.e. to perform the five compulsory congregational Salaah (prayers) (the males in mosques)], to pay the Zakaah and they enjoin Al‑Ma‘roof (i.e. Islamic Monotheism and all that Islam orders one to do), and forbid Al‑Munkar (i.e. disbelief, polytheism and all that Islam has forbidden) [i.e. they make the Qur’aan as the law of their country in all the spheres of life]. And with Allah rests the end of (all) matters (of creatures) [Al-Hajj 22:40-41]

 “Verily, We will indeed make victorious Our Messengers and those who believe (in the Oneness of Allah Islamic Monotheism) in this world’s life and on the Day when the witnesses will stand forth, (i.e. Day of Resurrection) [Al-Ghaafir 40:51]

The Day when their excuses will be of no profit to Zaalimoon (polytheists, wrongdoers and disbelievers in the Oneness of Allah). Theirs will be the curse, and theirs will be the evil abode (i.e. painful torment in Hell‑fire)” [Al-Ghaafir 40:52]

And there are many similar aayaat.

With regard to the words of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), “and the last one will be prayer (al-salaah)”, this refers to large numbers of people who do not pray and who are negligent with regard to salaah. This is what is happening today in many Muslim countries. We ask Allah to put the Muslims’ affairs right and to help them to adhere strongly to His religion and to be steadfast.

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12. QAREEN (COMPANION)

Question:

Is there anything in Islam that is called the Qareen? I would like to know whether I have a Qareen. What does Islam say about this, or does it not exist at all?

Answer: Praise be to Allah.

Yes, there is something which is called the qareen, which Allah has caused to accompany every human being. This qareen pushes a person to do evil things and to disobey Allah, with the exception of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), as will be explained below. 

Allah says (interpretation of the meaning): 

“His companion (qareen) will say: ‘Our Lord! I did not push him to transgression, (in disbelief, oppression, and evil deeds), but he was himself in error far astray.’ (27) Allah will say: ‘Dispute not in front of Me, I had already in advance sent you the threat. (28) The Sentence that comes from Me cannot be changed, and I am not unjust  to the slaves’”  [Qaaf 50:27-29] 

Ibn Katheer said: “ ‘His companion (qareen) will say – Ibn ‘Abbaas (may Allah be pleased with him), Mujaahid, Qutaadah and others said: this refers to the devil who is appointed to accompany him. ‘Our Lord! I did not push him to transgression means, he will disown that person on the Day of Judgement, and will say, Our Lord! I did not push him to transgression meaning, I did not lead him astray. 

but he was himself in error far astray means, he was misguided in himself, receptive to falsehood and resistant to the truth – as Allah says elsewhere (interpretation of the meaning): 

‘And Shaytaan (Satan) will say when the matter has been decided: “Verily, Allah promised you a promise of truth. And I too promised you, but I betrayed you. I had no authority over you except that I called you, and you responded to me. So blame me not, but blame yourselves. I cannot help you, nor can you help me. I deny your former act in associating me (Satan) as a partner with Allah (by obeying me in the life of the world). Verily, there is a painful torment for the Zaalimoon (polytheists and wrongdoers).”’ [Ibraaheem 14:22] 

The phrase Dispute not in front of Me refers to what Allah will say to the human and his companion from among the jinn, when they dispute before Him, and the human says, ‘O Lord, this one led me astray from the Reminder after it had come to me’ and the devil will say, Our Lord! I did not push him to transgression, (in disbelief, oppression, and evil deeds), but he was himself in error far astray – i.e., from the path of truth.

Allah will say, Dispute not in front of Me meaning, in My presence. I had already in advance sent you the threat means, I sent the warning on the lips of the Messengers, and I sent down the Books, so proof and evidence was established against you.

The Sentence that comes from Me cannot be changed – Mujaahid said, this means I have passed My judgement.

and I am not unjust  to the slaves means, I do not punish anyone for the sin of another, and I only punish a person for his sin after proof has been established against him.” 

Tafseer Ibn Katheer, 4/227

It was narrated that ‘Abd-Allah ibn Mas’ood said: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “There is no one among you but a companion from among the jinn has been assigned to him.” They said, “Even you, O Messenger of Allah?’ He said, “Even me, but Allah helped me with him and he became Muslim (or: and I am safe from him), so he only enjoins me to do that which is good.” 

According to another report, “… There is assigned to him a companion from among the jinn and a companion from among the angels.”  Narrated by Muslim, 2814

Al-Nawawi included this in a chapter which he called: Baab Tahreesh al-Shaytaan wa Ba’thihi Saraayaahu li Fitnat il-Naas wa anna ma’a kulli insaanin Qareen (Chapter on the evil of the Shaytaan and his sending his troops to tempt the people, and the fact that there is a jinn-companion with every human being). 

Al-Nawawi said:

“Fa aslamu (and I am safe from him) or fa aslama (and he became Muslim). These are two well known versions. One means ‘and I am safe from his evil and his temptation.’ The other means that ‘the qareen became Muslim and became a believer, so he does not tell me to do anything but good’.  

There was some scholarly dispute as to the form of the word. Al-Khattaabi said that the word was Fa aslamu (and I am safe from him); al-Qaadi ‘Iyaad said that it was fa aslama (and he became Muslim), which is more correct, because the hadeeth says, ‘so he only enjoins me to do that which is good’.  

They also disputed as to the meaning of the word fa aslama.  Some said that it meant that he (the qareen) submitted and surrendered, as it was narrated elsewhere than in Saheeh Muslim, fa astaslama [he gave up and surrendered]. It was also suggested that it means that he became a Muslim and a believer. The latter is the apparent meaning. Al-Qaadi said: Note that the ummah is unanimously agreed that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) was protected from the Shaytaan in physically, mentally and with regard what he said. This hadeeth contains a warning against the temptation of the qareen and his whispers and temptations. We know that he is with us so we should beware of him as much as possible.  Sharh Muslim, 17/157, 158 

It was narrated from ‘Abd-Allah ibn ‘Umar that the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “If anyone of you is praying, he should not let anyone pass in front of him; if that person insists then he should fight him for there is a qareen with him.”  Narrated by Muslim, 506. 

Al-Shawkaani said:

“The phrase ‘for there is a qareen with him’—according to al-Qaamoos [an Arabic-language dictionary] the word qareen refers to a companion; the Shaytaan always accompanies man and never leaves him. This is what is referred to here.”   Nayl al-Awtaar, 3/7

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13. TIME DIFFERENCE BETWEEN ADAM & MUHAMMAD (PBUH)

Question :

How long was the period of time between the creation of Adam (peace be upon him) and the creation of Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him)?

Answer: Praise be to Allah.

There is nothing in Islam that defines the period between Adam and Muhammad (peace be upon them both); indeed the length of time that Adam (peace be upon him) lived is not known. 

But there are some ahaadeeth and reports which, if we put them together, we can arriver at an approximate length of time, but that not cover the complete period. Some of these ahaadeeth and reports are saheeh (sound) and others are subject to differences of scholarly opinion, and some periods of time are not defined precisely in any reports. Among the saheeh reports concerning that are the following: 

1 – Allah says concerning the length of time that Nooh (peace be upon him) remained calling his people: 

“....and he stayed among them a thousand years less fifty years....” [Al-‘Ankaboot 29:14] 

2 – The period between ‘Eesa and our Prophet (peace be upon them both): al-Bukhaari narrated that Salmaan al-Faarisi said: “The period between ‘Eesa and our Prophet (peace be upon them both) was six hundred years.” There are also other reports whose soundness is debatable, which mention the following:  

3 – The period between Adam and Nooh (peace be upon them both): it was narrated from Abu Umaamah that a man said: “O Messenger of Allah, was Adam a Prophet?” He said, “Yes, and Allah spoke to him.” The man asked, “How much (time) was there between him and Nooh?” He said, “Ten centuries.” Narrated by Ibn Hibbaan in his Saheeh, 14/69; and by al-Haakim, 2/262. He said it is saheeh according to the conditions of Muslim, and al-Dhahabi agreed with him. Ibn Katheer said in al-Bidaayah wa’l-Nihaayah (1/94): this is (saheeh) according to the conditions of Muslim, even though he did not narrate it. 

4 – The period between Nooh and Ibraaheem (peace be upon them both): our evidence is in the continuation of the hadeeth of Abu Umaamah (may Allah be pleased with him) quoted above: … He said, “And how long was there between Nooh and Ibraaheem?” He said, “Ten centuries.” (Narrated by al-Haakim in al-Mustadrak, 2/288. He said: this hadeeth is saheeh according to the conditions of Muslim, although he did not narrate it. And it was narrated by al-Tabaraani in al-Mu’jam al-Kabeer, 8/118. 

It was reported that some of the narrators of this hadeeth were da’eef (weak), but al-Albaani classed it as saheeh on the basis of corroborating reports. 

Some of the reports that were narrated include the following: 

5.    The period between Moosa and ‘Eesa (peace be upon them both). Al-Qurtubi said: there was some difference of opinion as to the length of this period. Muhammad ibn Sa’d mentioned in his book al-Tabaqaat that Ibn ‘Abbaas said: “between Moosa ibn ‘Imraan and ‘Eesa ibn Maryam (peace be upon them both) there were one thousand and seven hundred years, and there was no fatrah (interval when no Prophet was sent) between them, for one thousand Prophets of the Children of Israel were sent between them, apart from other Prophets who were also sent (to other nations).

And between the birth of ‘Eesa and the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) there were five hundred and ninety-nine years.” (Tafseer al-Qurtubi, 6/121). Ibn Hajar said: “The narrators are agreed that the period of the Jews until the coming of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) was more than two thousand years, and the period of the Christians until the coming of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) was six hundred years.” (Fath al-Baari, 4/449) 

By looking at the verse, ahaadeeth, reports and opinions quoted above, if they are correct then we may use them to work out the period in question. 

But as for being certain of the length of time between Adam and Muhammad (peace be upon them both), then in addition to the above there are many other considerations to be addressed before we can work it out, including the following: 

Differences of scholarly opinion concerning the definition of the word qarn (translated above as “century”) – does it mean one hundred years, or does it mean one generation? What we know is that the lifespan of the people at that time was a fraction of the time that Nooh spent in calling his people, and we do not know how long the people of those generations lived.

       There is no report which defines the number of years between prophet Ibraheem and Moosa (peace be upon them both).

It remains to be said that being certain about such matters or researching them are not things on which we base our acts of worship or our actions, and the words of Allah are sufficient for us:

“And (also) ‘Aad and Thamood, and the Dwellers of Ar‑Rass, and many generations in between” [Al-Furqaan 25:38]

       We must strive to follow the example of these Prophets and walk in their footsteps, because this is the purpose behind mentioning them and their lives:

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14. ALLAH HAS SEALED THE HEART OF KUFFAR

Question:

If Allah has sealed the hearts of the Kuffar i.e. non-Muslims, then why are they to be blamed for not accepting Islam?

Answer:

1. Allah has sealed the hearts of those who are continuously bent on rejecting the truth

Allah (swt) mentions in Surah Al Baqarah chapter 2 verses 6 and 7

"As to those who reject Faith, it is the same to them Whether thou warn them or do not warn them; they will not believe.  [Al-Baqarah 2:6]

Allah hath set a seal on their hearts and on their hearing, and on their eyes is a veil; great is the penalty they (incur)." [Al-Baqarah 2:7]

These verses do not refer to common Kuffar who reject faith. The Arabic words used are al-lazina kafaroo, those who are bent on rejecting the truth. It will not make any difference to such people whether you warn them or not, they will not believe. Allah has set a seal on their hearts and on their hearing and on their eyes is a veil. It is not because Allah has set a seal on their hearts that these kuffar do not understand and believe, but it is the vice-versa. It is because these kuffar are bent on rejecting the truth and whether you warn them or not they will not believe, that Allah has set a seal on their hearts. Therefore Allah is not to blame, but these kuffaar who are bent on rejecting the faith are responsible.

2.    Example of teacher predicting a student will fail

Suppose an experienced teacher, before the final examinations, predicts that a particular student will fail in the exams, since the student is very mischievous, not attentive in class and does not do his homework. If after the student appears for the examination, he fails, who is to be blamed for the student failing: the teacher or the student? Just because the teacher predicted, it does not mean that the teacher is to be blamed but the student himself is responsible for his failure.

Similarly Allah (swt) knows in advance that there are some people who are bent on rejecting the faith and Allah has put a seal on their hearts. Thus these non-Muslims themselves are responsible for rejecting the faith and not Allah (swt).

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15. ALL RELIGIONS TEACH RIGHTEOUS, THEN WHY FOLLOW ISLAM?

Question:

All religions basically teach followers to do good deeds. Why should a person only follow Islam? Can he not follow any of the religions?

Answer:

1. Major difference between Islam and most other religions

All religions basically exhort mankind to be righteous and eschew evil. But Islam goes beyond that. It guides us towards practical ways of achieving righteousness and eliminating evil from our individual and collective lives. Islam takes into account human nature and the complexities of human society. Islam is guidance from the Creator Himself. Therefore, Islam is also called the Deenul-Fitrah (the natural religion of Man).

2. Example - Islam commands us to shun robbery and also prescribes method of eli-minating robbery

a. Islam prescribes method of eliminating robbery

All major religions teach that theft is an evil act. Islam teaches the same. So what is the difference between Islam and the other religions? The difference lies in the fact that Islam, besides teaching that robbing is evil, shows a practical way of creating a social structure in which people will not rob.

b. Islam prescribes Zakat

Islam prescribes a system of Zakat (obligatory annual charity). Islamic law prescribes that every person who has a saving that exceeds the nisab level i.e. more than 85 grams of gold, should give 2.5% of that saving every lunar year in charity. If every rich person in the world gave Zakat sincerely, poverty will be eradicated from this world. Not a single human being would die of hunger.

c. Chopping off the hands as punishment for robbery

Islam prescribes chopping off the hands of the convicted robber. The

Glorious Qur’an says in Surah Maidah:

“As to the thief, male or female, cut off his or her hands:a punishment by way of example, from Allah, for their crime: and Allah is Exalted in power, full of wisdom.” [Al-Maidah 5:38]

The non-Muslim may say, “Chopping off the hands in this 20th century. Islam is a barbaric and ruthless religion!”

d. Results achieved when Islamic Shariah Implemented

America is supposed to be one of the most advanced countries in the world. Unfortunately it also has one of the highest rates of crime, theft, and robbery. Suppose the Islamic shariah is implemented in America i.e. every rich person gives Zakat ( 2.5% of his savings in charity above 85 grams of gold every lunar year), and every convicted robber has his or her hands chopped off as a punishment. Will the rate of theft and robbery in America increase, remain same or decrease? Naturally it will decrease.

Moreover the existence of such a stringent law would discourage many a potential robber. I agree that the amount of theft that takes place in the world today is so tremendous that if you chop off the hands of all the thieves, there will be tens of thousands of people whose hands will be chopped off. The point here is that the moment you implement this law the rate of theft will decline immediately. The potential robber would give it a serious thought before jeopardizing his limbs. The mere thought of the punishment itself will discourage majority of the robbers. There will barely be a few who would rob. Hence only a few person’s hands would be chopped off but millions would live peacefully without fear of being robbed. Islamic Shariah is therefore practical, and achieves results.

3. Example: Islam prohibits the molestation and rape of women. It enjoins hijab and prescribes capital punishment for a convicted rapist.

a. Islam prescribes method of eliminating molestation and rape

All the major religions declare the molestation and rape of women as grave sins. Islam teaches the same. What then is the difference between Islam and the other religions? The difference lies in the fact that Islam does not merely preach respect for women, or abhor molestation and rape as serious crimes, but also gives clear guidance as to how society can eliminate such crimes.

a. Hijab for men

Islam has a system of hijab. The Glorious Qur’an first mentions hijab for the men and then for the women. Hijab for the men is mentioned in the following verse:

“Say to the believing men that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty: that will make for greater purity for them: and Allah is well acquainted with all that they do.”  [An-Noor 24:30]

The moment a man looks at a woman and if any brazen or unashamed thought comes to his mind, he should lower his gaze.

a. Hijab for women

Hijab for women is mentioned in the following verse:

“And say to the believing women that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty; that they should not display their beauty and ornaments except what (must ordinarily) appear thereof; that they should draw their veils over their bosoms and not display their beauty except to their husbands, their fathers, their husbands’ fathers, their sons....” [An-Noor 24:31]

The extent of hijab for a woman is that her complete body should be covered. The only part that can be seen, are the face and the hands up to the wrists. If they wish to cover, they can even cover these parts of the body. However some Islamic scholars insist that even the face should be covered.

c. Hijab prevents molestation

The reason why Allah has prescribed Hijab for the women is given in the Qur’an in the folowing verse of Surah Al-Ahzab:

“O Prophet! Tell thy wives and daughters, and the believing women, that they should cast their outer garments over their persons (when abroad): that is most convenient, that they should be known (as such) and not molested. And Allah is Oft-Forgiving, most Merciful.” [Al-Ahzab 33:59]

The Qur’an says that Hijab has been prescribed for the women so that they are recognized as modest women this would prevent them from being molested.

d. Example of twin sisters

Suppose two sisters who are twins and who are equally beautiful, walk down a street. One of them is wearing the Islamic Hijab i.e. the complete body is covered except for the face and the hands up to the wrists, and the other twin is wearing a mini skirt or shorts. Around the corner there is a hooligan who is waiting for an opportunity to tease a girl. Who will he tease?

The girl wearing the Islamic Hijab or the girl wearing the mini skirt or shorts? Dresses that expose more than they conceal, are an indirect temptation to the opposite sex for teasing, molestation and rape. The Qur’an rightly says that the hijab prevents women from being molested.

e. Capital punishment for rapist

The Islamic shariah prescribes capital punishment for a convicted rapist. The non-Muslim may be horrified at such a stringent punishment in this age. Many accuse Islam of being ruthless and barbaric. I have asked a common question to hundreds of non-Muslim men. Suppose God-forbid, some one rapes your wife, your mother or your sister and you are made the judge. The rapist is brought in front of you. What punishment would you give him? All of them said, “we would put him to death.” Some went to the extent of saying, “we would torture him to death”, If your wife or your mother is raped you want the rapist to be put to death. But if someone else’s wife or mother is raped, capital punishment is a barbaric law. Why the double standards?

f. U.S.A. has one of the highest rate of Rape

The United States of America is supposed to be one of the most advanced countries of the world. An F.B.I report in the year 1990 says that 1,02,555 cases of rape were reported. It further says that only 16% of the cases of rapes are reported. Thus, in order to know the actual number of rapes that took place in 1990, the reported figure should be multiplied by 6.25. We get a total of 6,40,968 rape cases that took place in the year 1990. If the total is divided by 365 the number of days in a year, we get an average of 1,756 rape incidents everyday.

Later another report said that an average of 1900 cases of rape are committed in U.S.A every day. According to National Crime Victimization Survey Bureau of Justice Statistics (U. S. Dept. of Justice) in 1996 alone 3,07,000 cases of rape were reported. Only 31% of the actual cases of rape were reported. Thus, 3,07,000 X 3.226 = 9,90,322 rapes took place in 1996.

That is, an average of 2,713 cases of rape took place everyday in America in 1996. Every 32 seconds one rape is taking place in America. Maybe American rapists got bolder. The FBI report of 1990 continues and says that out of the rape cases that were reported only 10% of the rapist were arrested, that is only 1.6% of the actual rapes committed. Out of those arrested, 50% were let free before the trial. This would mean that only 0.8% of the rapists faced a trial. In other words if a person commits 125 rapes the chances that he will get a punishment for rape is only once. Many would consider this a good gamble. And the report says that of those people who faced trial 50% received sentences of less than a year’s imprisonment though the American law says rape carries a seven year sentence of imprisonment. For a rapist, the judge is lenient to first time offenders.

Imagine a person commits 125 rapes and the chances of being convicted is only once, and 50% of the time the judge will grant leniency and give a sentence of less than a year!

g. Results achieved when Islamic Shariah Implemented

Suppose the Islamic shariah is implemented in America. Whenever a man looks at a woman and if any brazen or unashamed thought comes to his mind, he lowers his gaze. Every woman wears the Islamic Hijab, that is the complete body is covered except the face and the hands upto the wrists. After this if any man commits rape, he gets capital punishment. The question is, will the rate of rape in America increase, will it remain the same or will it decrease? Naturally it will decrease. Islamic Shariah gets results.

4. Islam has Practical Solutions for the Problems of Mankind

Islam is the best way of life because its teachings are not doctrinaire rhetoric but practical solutions for the problems of mankind. Islam achieves results both at the individual and collective levels. Islam is the best way of life because it is a practical, universal religion not confined to any ethnic group or nationality.

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16. prayers not answered or fulfilled by Allah (SWT)?

Question :

Why prayers are not generally answered by Allah (SWT)?

Answer :

 1. You may dislike a thing which is good for you (2:216)

The reply to this question is given in the Glorious Qur’an in Surah Baqarah chapter 2 verse 216:

“....But it is possible that ye dislike a thing which is good for you, and that ye love a thing which is bad for you. But Allah knows, and you know not.” (Al-Baqarah 2 : 216)

2. Praying for a motor cycle.

There may be a very pious person who prays to Allah (SWT) for a motor cycle but the prayer is not answered. Allah knows very well that if the person acquires a motor cycle he will have an accident and get crippled. The Qur’an rightly says you may love a thing which is bad for you but Allah knows and you know not.

3. Businessman misses flight due to traffic jam.

Suppose a rich businessman is supposed to catch a flight in order to click a deal which would fetch him billions of rupees. While going to the airport to catch the flight, there was an unusual traffic jam on the road, which prevented him from reaching the airport on time. The businessman misses the very flight and sorrowfully says “This is the worst thing that has ever happened to me in my life.”

While returning back home he hears on the radio that the very flight that he was supposed to catch has crashed and all the passengers have died. The businessman happily says: this is the best thing that has ever happened to me in my life.

Allah knew best that the life of the businessman was much more precious than the billions of rupees that he had lost. You may dislike a thing which is good for you, but Allah knows and you know not.

4. Surah Shura-chapter 42 verse 27.

The Qur’an mentions in Surah Shura chapter 42 verse 27

“If Allah were to enlarge the provision for His Servants, they would indeed transgress beyond all bounds through the earth; but He sends (it) down in due measure as He pleases. For He is with His servants well-acquainted, watchful.”   (Ash-Shura 42 : 27)

5. Surah Baqarah chapter 2 verse 186.

It is mentioned in the Qur’an in Surah Baqarah chapter 2 verse 186

“When My servants ask thee concerning Me, I am indeed close (to them): I listen to the prayer of every suppliant when he calls on Me:....”   (Al-Baqarah 2 :186)

6. Surah Ghafir chapter 40 verse 60.

It is mentioned in Surah Ghafir chapter 40 verse 60

“And your Lord says: “Call on Me; I will answer your (Prayer): but those who are too arrogant to serve Me will surely find themselves in Hell – in humiliation” (Al-Ghafir 40 : 60)

7. Allah answers your prayer by not answering.

Allah (SWT) says in the Qur’an that
“you call on Me and I will answer the prayer”. These verses of the Qur’an are not falsified when your prayers are not answered. In fact Allah (SWT) in His Divine Wisdom answers your prayers by not granting you what you with your limited and finite knowledge had asked for.

8. Unbelievers and impious people have luxury.

Some people wonder how is it that several unbelievers and impious people lead a luxurious life. They worship false gods and pray to them for wealth. Since these people worship false gods yet, Allah (SWT) answers their prayers and gives them wealth which further leads them away from Allah (SWT) and thus in the long run it is harmful for them.

9. Believers remember Allah whether rich or poor.

A true believer is a person who, irrespective of whether he is rich or poor, remembers Allah (SWT). Allah (SWT) has described such people in Surah An Noor chapter 24 verse 37

“Men, whom neither traffic nor merchandise can divert from the remembrance of Allah nor from regular prayer, nor from the practice of regular Charity: their (only) fear is for the Day when hearts and eyes will be transformed (in a world wholly new)-" (
An-Noor 24 : 37)

10. A True believer always says Alhamdullillah.

A true believer is a person who irrespective of what ever happens says, ‘Alhamdulillah’. Praise be to Allah. Even when he goes in loss he says Alhamdullillah, because he has faith in Allah that if Allah permitted the loss to be incurred it has to be beneficial in the long run. In short he has faith in Allah, that whatever happens, happens for the good.

And Allah Knows Best.

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17. DO MUSLIMS WORSHIP THE KAABA?

Question:

When Islam is against idol worship then why Muslims :

1.    Bow down to the Kaaba in their prayer?

2.    Also tawaaf of Kabba is like idol worshipping?

Answer:

1. Muslims bowing down to the Kaaba in prayer?

Kaaba is the Qibla i.e. the direction Muslims face during their prayers. It is important to note that though Muslims face the Kaaba during prayers, they do not worship the Kaaba. Muslims worship and bow to none but Allah. It is mentioned in Surah Baqarah:

“We see the turning of thy face (for guidance) to the heavens: now shall We turn thee to a Qiblah that shall please thee. Turn then thy face in the direction of the Sacred Mosque: wherever ye are, turn your faces in that direction.”  (Al-Baqarah 2:144)

Islam believes in fostering unity

For instance, if Muslims want to offer Salaah (Prayer), it is possible that some may wish to face north, while some may wish to face south. In order to unite Muslims in their worship of the One True God, Muslims, wherever they may be, are asked to face in only one direction i.e. towards the Kaaba. If some Muslims live towards the west of the Kaaba they face the east. Similarly if they live towards the east of the Kaaba they face the west.

Kaaba is at the Centre of the World Map

The Muslims were the first people to draw the map of the world. They drew the map with the south facing upwards and north downwards. The Kaaba was at the centre. Later, western cartographers drew the map upside down with the north facing upwards and south downwards. Yet, Alhamdullilah the Kaaba is at the centre of the world map.

Hadith of Umar (may Allah be pleased with him)

Regarding the black stone, Hajr-e-Aswad (Black Stone), there is a hadith (tradition), attributed to the illustrious companion of the Prophet Muhammed (pbuh), Umar (may Allah be pleased with him)

According to Sahih Bukhari, Volume 2, book of Hajj, chapter 56, H.No. 675.

Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) said, “I know that you are a stone and can neither benefit nor harm. Had I not seen the Prophet (pbuh) touching (and kissing) you, I would never have touched (and kissed) you”.

People stood on Kaaba and gave the adhaan

At the time of the Prophet, people even stood on the Kaaba and gave the ‘adhaan’ or the call to prayer. One may ask those who allege that Muslims worship the Kaaba; which idol worshipper stands on the idol he worships?

2. Tawaf around Kaaba like worshipping

When the Muslims go to Masjid-e-Haram in Makkah, they perform tawaf or circumambulation round the Kaaba. This act symbolizes the belief and worship of One God, since, just as every circle has one centre, so also there is only one Allah (swt) worthy of worship.

It is essential to define the essence of the message to which Islamic sharee’ah calls, and how it differs from the idolatry of Jaahiliyyah. Then we will be able to understand whether tawaaf around the Ka’bah is a manifestation of idolatry or of Tawheed and Islam.  

If we refer to the Book of Allah, may He be exalted, we will see that the essence of the Islamic religion is submission to the commands of Allah and taking Him as our only Lord and God, and rejecting all others who are worshipped unlawfully. 

As for ignorant idol-worship, it means submitting to something other than Allah, and turning to something other than Allah, be it a rock, an idol or a “wali” (“saint”), as a weak and humble slave filled with hope and fear. These things – in Islam – can only be for Allah, may He be glorified and exalted.  

The Muslim who affirms the Oneness of Allah obeys the commands of Allah in submission to His greatness, may He be glorified and exalted. If He were to command him to prostrate to a human being, or to venerate a human being or a rock, then he would obey that as an act of worship to Allah and in submission to His command and wisdom, as the angels did when Allah commanded them to prostrate to Adam (peace be upon him), and they prostrated. 

As for the idolatrous mushrik (one who does not worship God), he prostrates to a human being or a rock out of respect for the person or rock itself, and in submission to what he imagines they possess of the power to benefit or harm, turning to them with hope and fear and humility. In doing that he is not paying any attention to the command of Allah, or to His rulings, rather he is directing his submission and worship to something other than Allah on the basis of his own whims and desires. 

Hence Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah (may Allah have mercy on him) said: 

As for submission, devotion of the heart and acknowledgement of divinity and Lordship, these can only be directed towards Allah alone, and if directed towards anyone or anything else they are utterly false. As for prostration it is connected to the commands of Allah, because Allah has commanded us to prostrate to Him, and if He had commanded us to prostrate to any of His creation other than Him, we would have prostrated to that one in obedience to Allah if He wanted us to venerate the one to whom we were prostrating. As He has not commanded us to prostrate, then we should not do it at all. The prostration of the angels to Adam was an act of worship to Allah, obedience to Him and a means of drawing closer to Him, and it was a way of honouring and respecting Adam. And the prostration of Yoosuf’s brothers to him was a greeting. End quote. 

Majmoo’ al-Fataawa (4/360, 361). 

Thus we may differentiate between many cases in which actions may appear outwardly to be similar, but in fact one is Islam, Tawheed and faith, whereas the other is shirk, kufr and idolatry. 

That includes tawaaf around the Ka’bah: 

The Muslim who affirms the Oneness of Allah obeys the command of Allah in all matters, great and small. When he hears the words of Allah (interpretation of the meaning), “Then let them complete the prescribed duties (Manâsik of Hajj & Umra) for them, and perform their vows, and circumambulate the Ancient House (the Ka'bah at Makkah)” (Al-Hajj 22:29), he cannot help but obey them, so he circumambulates the sacred House out of love for Allah and in obedience to Him, hoping for mercy from Allah and fearing His punishment. And he does not go beyond what he has been commanded to do of tawaaf, so he does not touch the stones of this House or think that it can bring benefit or cause harm. 

As for the idolatrous mushrik, he is the one who circumambulates rocks or shrines, venerating them, hoping that they will relieve his distress and answer his prayers, weeping out of fear of them, beseeching them, and seeking to draw closer to them by means of different acts of worship such as prostration, sacrifices, circumambulation and supplication. In doing so he is not obeying the command of Allah or the laws of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), rather he is obeying his own whims and desires and the shaytaan. 

So there is a great and clear difference between the actions of those who believe in Tawheed (Oneness of God) in Islam, and the manifestations of idolatry and shirk. The one who does not pay attention to this difference will become confused, and will no longer be able to differentiate between kufr and faith.

We hope that the difference between the two is now clear. 

And Allah knows best.

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18. BACKBITING

Question:

I have been doing lots of ghibah (backbiting) about many people (friends and family) but now I feel very bad about it and want to repent for it, but I’m scared to ask people for forgiveness( it might effect the relationship). What should I do to make my heart clean? Inshallah I will become a better Muslim some day. How should I start asking forgiveness without telling them how much I backbitten about them?

Answer: Allah swt says: 

". O you who believe! Avoid much suspicions, indeed some suspicions are sins. And spy not, neither backbite one another. Would one of you like to eat the flesh of his dead brother? You would hate it (so hate backbiting). And fear Allâh. Verily, Allâh is the One Who accepts repentance, Most Merciful. (12) O mankind! We have created you from a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know one another. Verily, the most honourable of you with Allâh is that (believer) who has At-Taqwa  [i.e. one of the Muttaqûn (pious)]. Verily, Allâh is All-Knowing, All-Aware."  (Al-Hujjarat 49:12,13) 

Allah(swt) says: 
"God accepts the repentance of those who do evil in ignorance and repent soon afterwards; to them will God turn in mercy: For God is full of knowledge and wisdom. (17) Of no effect is the repentance of those who continue to do evil, until death faces one of them, and he says, "Now have I repented indeed;" nor of those who die rejecting Faith: for them have We prepared a punishment most grievous." (An-Nisa 4:17 - 18)

Also,
"And establish regular prayers at the two ends of the day and at the approaches of the night: For those things, that are good remove those that are evil: Be that the word of remembrance to those who remember (their Lord)" (Hüd 11:114)
 
You can ask forgiveness from your friends and relatives without mentioning that you have done backbiting. Instead you can say that we are friends (and relatives) and it is possible that something might go wrong unintentionally or somehow. Please forgive whatever bad I have told or listened. May Allah (SWT)  reward you based on your intention.

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19. CALLING BY NAMES

 

It is absolutely against the guidance of Islam and a sin in the Sight of Allah Almighty to appoint or call others by offensive or derogatory nicknames; or nicknames which are derived out of hatred, mockery, sarcasm, envy, jealousy, etc.

But there is absolutely no harm in assigning or calling another by a good nickname, a name which has been derived out of love and compassion, not out of hatred, or sarcasm, or mockery, etc.

For example, Allah Almighty has Himself assigned ‘Nicknames’ for His Noble and Beloved Messenger SallAllah u Ãlayhi Wasallam like Muzammil and Mudatthir meaning one who is wrapped up in a cloth or blanket; or the nickname Prophet Mohamed SallAllah u Ãlayhi Wasallam assigned to His beloved cousin and son-in-law, Hadrat Ali (Radhi Allah u anhu) by calling him Abu-Turab (literally meaning ‘father of dust’ or ‘one who lies upon dust’).

The Prophet SallAllah u Ãlayhi Wasallam said: O’ community of people, who believed by their tongue, and belief did not enter their hearts, do not back-bite Muslims, and do not search for their faults, for if anyone searches for their faults, Allah  Subhanahoo Wa Ta’ala will search for his fault, and if Allah Subhanahoo Wa Ta’ala searches for the fault of anyone, He disgraces him in his house!’ Sunan of Abu-Dawood Hadith 4862 Narrated by AbuBarzah al-Aslami.

The Prophet SallAllah u Ãlayhi Wasallam said: ‘When I was taken up to heaven I passed by people who had nails of copper and were scratching their faces and their breasts.’ I asked: ‘Who are these people, O Jibrael?’ He replied: ‘They are those who were given to back biting and who aspersed people`s honour.’ Sunan of Abu-Dawood Hadith 4860 Narrated by Anas ibn Malik.

Almighty Allah `s Messenger SallAllah u Ãlayhi Wasallam said: ‘Do you know what is backbiting?’ They (the Companions) said: “Allah  and His Messenger SallAllah u Ãlayhi Wasallam know best”. Thereupon Prophet SallAllah u Ãlayhi Wasallam) said: ‘Backbiting implies your talking about your brother (behind his back) in a manner which he does not like.’ It was said to him: “What is your opinion about this that if I actually find (that failing) in my brother which I made a mention of?” Prophet SallAllah u Ãlayhi Wasallam said: ‘If (that failing) is actually found (in him) what you assert, you in fact backbited him, and if that is not in him it is a slander.’  Sahih Muslim HadithHadith 6265 Narrated byAbuHurayrah

To talk about an individual’s mistakes or fault behind his back to another, in a manner that if that individual was present amongst them, he would dislike it is back-biting, which is a sin and absolutely forbidden in Islam.

The Prophet SallAllah u Ãlayhi Wasallam said, "The atonement for backbiting is to pray for forgiveness of the person who was slandered and to say, `O Allah , forgive us and him`." Fiqh-us-Sunnah Fiqh 4.107b.

Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Almighty Allah ’s Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me alone. Allah Almighty Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.

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20. DOES DREAMS HAVE ANY MEANING

Question :

I have a question about dreams. Does Allah try to communicate to his creations through dreams? Do the dreams humans have mean anything? Thanks

Answer:
 
First of all, dreams or visions are not sources of legislation, so it shouldn't be threatening or frightening to anybody and it doesn't have a binding force of legal rules.

Second, the interpretation of dreams is not an experimental knowledge but a divine gift bestowed on whom Allah wills. It is not a science that has certain laws; it is merely based on opinions, and hence what is written or said about the interpretation of dreams is not reliable and cannot be taken for granted.  
 
Bukhari,Vol 9, Book 87. Interpretation Of Dreams.Hadith 156: 
Narrated By Ibn 'Umar:
I was a young unmarried man during the lifetime of the Prophet. I used to sleep in the mosque. Anyone who had a dream, would narrate it to the Prophet. I said, "O Allah! If there is any good for me with You, then show me a dream so that Allah's Apostle may interpret it for me." So I slept and saw (in a dream) two angels came to me and took me along with them, and they met another angel who said to me, "Don't be afraid, you are a good man." They took me towards the Fire, and behold, it was built inside like a well, and therein I saw people some of whom I recognized, and then the angels took me to the right side. In the morning, I mentioned that dream to Hafsa. Hafsa told me that she had mentioned it to the Prophet and he said, "'ABDULLAH is a righteous man if he only prays more at night." (Az-Zuhri said, "After that, 'Abdullah used to pray more at night."

Elaborating on the interpretation of dreams, we'd like to cite for you the following fatwa issued by Sheikh `Atiyyah Saqr, former head of Al-Azhar Fatwa Committee, on this issue:

"As for interpretation of dreams, this issue is certainly one of hidden secrets known only to Almighty Allah, the Knower of the Unseen. So all that is written or said of the interpretation of dreams is just a matter of personal reasoning and is not reliable. This is because this issue is one of the Unseen matters that have something to do with spirits and their interaction with outer worlds. It is not true that it has certain laws; it is merely based on opinions through which some people issued many books claiming to be authoritative reference on interpreting dreams. On this, Sheikh Abdul Ghani Al-Nablusi has written a book entitled Ta`tir al-Anam fi Ta`bir al-Manam. As the author of the book himself, he admits that the interpretation of dreams varies from one person to another and from one atmosphere to another.

However there are certain facts you should know about, and all of them are based on authentic Hadiths quoted from the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him); they are:

First Hadith: "A vision is from Almighty Allah (it's a form of divine inspiration) whereas a dream is from Satan. When any one of you have a bad dream, let him/her spit out (without saliva) to the left side and recite the two 'Protective Surahs' (An-Nas and Al-Falaq) and the dream will not harm him/her, Allah willing."

Second Hadith: "At the approach of the Hour, the Muslim will have a true vision, and honesty will help him to have the clearest and truest vision. Moreover, seeing a true vision is the 46th degree of prophethood. Vision is of three kinds: the good one with glad tidings from Allah; the bad dream, which is from Satan to invade hearts with sadness; the third one is the effect of an afore thought matter. So if any one of you sees something sad in a vision, he should offer two rak`ats in prayer and never reveal it to anyone."

Third Hadith: The Prophet said that if anyone sees him in his vision, he has truly seen him, for Satan can never disguise himself in the honorable form of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him). (Bukhari) 
 
To conclude, the interpretation of dreams is not an experimental knowledge to pass on to people, generation to generation. It is a divine gift bestowed on whom Allah wills. Prophet Joseph's talent of interpreting dreams is a case in point. But, we should say that dreams or visions are not sources of legislation, so it shouldn't be threatening or frightening to anybody and it doesn't have a binding force of legal rules."

Al-Bukhari, Vol 9, Book 87. Interpretation Of Dreams. Hadith 139.  
Narrated By 'Aisha: Allah's Apostle said (to me),
"You were shown to me twice in (my) dream. Behold, a man was carrying you in a silken piece of cloth and said to me, "She is your wife, so uncover her,' and behold, it was you. I would then say (to myself), 'If this is from Allah, then it must happen.'"

And Allah Almighty knows best.

Excerpted, with some modifications, from:http://www.islamicity.com/

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21. HOW TO REACT WITH DREAMS

Question :

Should we  believe in the dream or not and how to react with them?

Answer :  Praise be to Allah.  

Note that the things people see in their sleep may come under one of two categories : 

1 – Dreams/visions 

2 – Confused dreams 

Confused dreams in turn are divided into two categories: 

1 – The Shaytaan’s attempts to frighten 

2 – The workings of the subconscious. 

So it may be said that what people see in their dreams may be divided into three categories: 

1-  Visions or dreams that come from Allah.

2-  Attempts by the Shaytaan to frighten us

3-  The workings of the subconscious. 

These categories are indicated by the hadeeth narrated in Saheeh Muslim (no. 2263) from Abu Hurayrah, which says that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “When the time (of the Day of Resurrection) draws near, a believer's dream will hardly be false. And the truest vision will be of one who is himself the most truthful in speech, for the vision of a Muslim is the forty-fifth part of Prophecy, and dreams are of three types:

The good dream which is glad tidings from Allah;

The bad dream which causes distress, which is from the Shaytaan;

And the dream which represents what a person is thinking about.

So if any one of you sees a dream which he does not like he should get up and pray, and not tell people about his dream…” 

It was narrated from ‘Awf ibn Maalik that the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “Dreams are of three types: some are terrifying things from the Shaytaan, aimed at causing grief to the son of Adam; some are things that a person is concerned with when he is awake, so he sees them in his dreams; and some are a part of the forty-six parts of Prophecy.”  (Saheeh Sunan Ibn Maajah, 3155) 

It was narrated from Abu Hurayrah that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “Dreams are of three types: glad tidings from Allah, what is on a person’s mind, and frightening dreams from the Shaytaan. If any of you sees a dream that he likes, let him tell others of it if he wishes, but if he sees something that he dislikes, he should not tell anyone about it, and he should get up and pray.”     (Saheeh Sunan Ibn Maajah, 3154) 

There follow a number of saheeh ahaadeeth which describe how to deal with what one sees in one’s dream. 

1 – It was narrated that Abu Qutaadah said: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “Good dreams come from Allah and bad dreams come from the Shaytaan. If anyone sees a bad dream that scares him, let him spit drily to his left and seek refuge with Allah from its evil, then it will not harm him.”  (Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 3292) 

2 – It was narrated that Abu Salamah said: I used to see such terrible dreams that that I began to shake and have a fever, but did not cover myself with a cloak until I met Abu Qutaadah, and I mentioned that to him. He said, “I heard the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) say,  ‘Good dreams come from Allah and bad dreams come from the Shaytaan. If anyone sees a bad dream that he dislikes, let him spit dryly to his left three times and seek refuge with Allah from its evil, then it will not harm him.’”   (Narrated by Muslim, 2261) 

3 – It was narrated that Abu Hurayrah said: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “If any one of you sees a dream that he dislikes, let him turn over, and spit dryly to his left three times and ask Allah of His goodness, and seek refuge with Him from its evil.”   (Saheeh Sunan Ibn Maajah). 

4 – It was narrated from Jaabir that the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “If any one of you sees a dream that he dislikes, let him spit dryly to his left three times and seek refuge with Allah from the Shaytaan three times, and turn over onto his other side.”   (Narrated by Muslim, 2262). 

5 – The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) told us the difference between good dreams and bad dreams. It was narrated from Abu Sa’eed al-Khudri that he heard the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) say: “If any one of you sees a dream that he likes, it is from Allah, so let him praise Allah for it and tell people about it. But if he sees something other than that, that he dislikes, it is from the Shaytaan, so let him seek refuge with Allah from its evil and not mention it to anyone, for it will not harm him.”   (Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 7045).  

So it is clear that good dreams come from Allah and bad dreams which a person dislikes come from the Shaytaan, so he has to seek refuge with Allah from their evil. 

6 – It was narrated that Abu Hurayrah said: the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “If any one of you sees something that he dislikes, let him get up and pray, and not tell people about it.”  (Narrated by Muslim, 2263). 

7 – It was narrated from Jaabir that a Bedouin came to the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and said, “I dreamt that my head was cut off and I was chasing it.” The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) rebuked him and said: “Do not tell anyone how the Shaytaan is messing about with you in your dreams.”   (Narrated by Muslim, 2268) 

So we may sum up from these ahaadeeth the most important points about what a person should do if he sees a dream that he dislikes, as follows: 

1- He should know that this dream is from the Shaytaan who wants to cause him grief, so he should annoy the Shaytaan by not paying any attention to him.

2- He should seek refuge with Allah from the accursed Shaytaan.

3- He should seek refuge with Allah from the evil of this dream.

4- He should spit dryly to his left three times, i.e., blowing with a little bit of saliva.

5- He should not tell anyone about it.

6- He should turn over from the side on which he was sleeping, so if he was lying on his left side he should turn over to his right side, and vice versa.

7- He should get up and pray. 

If a person adheres to this etiquette, then we hope that this bad dream will not harm him, as it says in the texts. And Allah knows best.

Excerpted, with some modifications, from: http://islamqa.com/en/

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