Archives for July 2015
“Uncle, you are the best!” Hafsah exclaimed as Aminah gave Abi a huge bear hug. Then she carefully put the money away in her purse.
“Now go! You don’t want to miss anything.”
The children happily dashed into the masjid grounds. There were a lot of people at the function today. The masjid committee had set up a bouncing castle, a bumping car ride and a huge slide which was enough to fit five people. There were many stalls selling delicious food from cotton candy to Arabic dumplings.
“What’s that?” Hamaad asked pointing to a place where many people were gathered.
“That’s soapy water football.” Yusuf replied. “They play football in water.”
“Really?” Abdullah said, “I want to try that.”
“First,” Hafsah said, “Let’s go register our names.”
Since they were children and all under the age of fifteen, the masjid volunteers had asked all the children whether they were with their parents or not to register their names and their parents mobile numbersin case of an emergency.
The children went to the registration stand and waited for their turn.
“Assalamu alaykum.” A volunteer said. “Eid Mubarak kids!”
“Waalykum assalam, Eid Mubarak to you too.” Yusuf replied. “We are here to register.”
“Of course.” The volunteer pulled up a sheet, “Write down your full name and your parents’ mobile number.”
Yusuf wrote down all their full names and their parents’ mobile number. Hamaad was given a badge to wear with his name and parents number, as he was really young.
“Enjoy your day! Eid Mubarak!”
“Eid Mubarak!” the children replied back as they rushed towards their favorite attractions.
Hafsah and Aminah went to see the stalls where they were selling some clothes and handbags. The two were so excited with their money and couldn’t wait to spend it.
“Aminah! Assalmualykum.” Khadijah said. “You came!”
Khadijah’s sister and her friends had a stall of their own and were selling homemade Turkish delights. The stall was crowded since everyone wanted to buy some.
“Wa alaykum assalam. Yes.” Aminah pointed at Hafsah. “This is my cousin.”
“Assalamu alaykum.” Hafsa stretched out her hand. “It’s really nice to meet you.”
“Wa alaykum assalam. You too.” Khadijah said as she shook her hand.
“Come and join us. We are just looking around.” Hafsah said.
“Sure. I’ll just tell my sister.”
Soon enough Aminah had her arms linked with her best friend and favorite cousin. They tried out delicious food, played a few games and bought the same bags to match each other. They had so much fun that they nearly forgot the time.
The boys on the other hand spent their time only at the attractions and hadn’t spared a glance at the stalls area where the girls were at. They kept playing and playing and met many new friends who in turn kept playing and playing with them.
“Allahu Akbar , Allahu Akbar” The Mu’adhin called.
“Ya rabb!” Abdullah exclaimed, “It’s already Maghrib time!”
“Who doesn’t have Wudu’?” Yusuf asked the group of friends. All of them raised their hands.
“Last one to reach the Wudu’ area buys ice cream.” Abdullah exclaimed and they all dashed towards the Wuduu area at lightning speed.
Just as Abi instructed, the children had gathered near the gate after Maghrib. The girls had bags of stuff that they bought, while the boys were sweating and their faces were shining a bright red colour. Abi pulled the car up to the gate and the children climbed in.
“Assalamu alaykum Abi.”
“Assalamu alaykum Uncle!”
“Wa alaykum assalam kids. Had fun?” Abi turned to smile at them as they got on.
“Yes,” Abdullah replied. “I am so tired.”
“Me too.” Aminah said.
“Yeah me too.” Yusuf agreed.
“Me as well.” Hafsah chimed in.
Abi laughed. “Your mothers have prepared some wonderful food for you. Ahh. Wait. Where’s Hamaad?”
The children looked around them. There was Abdullah, Aminah , Hafsah and Yusuf. Hamaad was not in the car. Yusuf opened the door and got out, scanning the area to find Hamaad.
“Hamaad!” He called out.
Alarmed, Abi and the children got out of the car as well. “Hamaad! Where are you?”
Abi took out his phone. “Girls, you stay with me. Boys, go back to the places you went today, and see if Hamaad is around. “
The boys nodded and ran to the area where all the attractions were. “Hamaad!”
Since it was already dark, many people were leaving the Masjid grounds so the area was getting emptier and emptier. The volunteers were busy picking up the leftover trash and cleaning up.
“Hamaad!” they called out. But there was no reply. They kept searching and searching over and over again.
Where could he have been? Wasn’t he with them the whole time? Oh Hamaad. Where are you? The children thought to themselves worriedly.
Abi called up his friend who was on the Masjid committee, and asked for his help. Soon the volunteers started helping in the search as well. As the closed up stalls were stacked up and ready to be taken away, Hafsah’s tears began to flow. She was getting really scared. What if something happened to Hamaad? Was he frightened? Was he hungry?
“Hafsah?” A voice called out. It was Khadijah.
“Oh, you’re still here? What’s wrong?”
Hafsah sniffed. “My brother. He is missing.”
Hafsah nodded. Her heart was heavy. What was Ummi going to say? She was such a terrible sister.
“I saw him at the back just a few moments ago.” Khadijah said.
Hafsah looked up startled, and wiped her red nose with the back of her hand. “Huh? Where?”
Just then, Aminah entered, “Khadijah…what are you-“
Hafsah stood up and held Aminah’s arm , “She knows where Hamaad is.”
Khadijah nodded, “Follow me.”
The three girls went to the backside of the courtyard where all the stalls were being stacked. The stall owners were simply standing and talking. At a corner, there was a small boy packing up some leftover food neatly into some boxes.
“Hamaad?” Hafsa called out.
The small boy looked up to see his sister. Hafsah broke into tears and hugged her brother. “You silly boy! Where were you? We were searching high and low for you!”
Hamaad showed his sister a box. “I asked the stall owners if they had some food left over and was packing it to give to the homeless people. I have seen so many in the streets lately, and Ummi reminded me at breakfast that we have so much and some people have nothing to eat, even on Eid!”
Hafsah wanted to knock some sense into her brother but she stayed silent. What he wanted to do was a good deed.
“I am going to go get Abi and the boys, you stay here.” Aminah said as she rushed off to find her family.
Hafsah looked at Khadijah, “Thank you. You found my brother.”
Khadijah smiled, “I am glad I was able to help.”
Soon they were on their way home and driving slowly, distributing boxes to the homeless people on the streets.
“Here you go.” Abdullah said as he handed an old man a plastic box of food.
“May God bless you, child.” The man said as he accepted the box. Abdullah smiled and went back to the car.
“That was the last of them, wasn’t it?” Aminah asked. Yusuf nodded in reply.
Combined with the leftovers from the function and the food Auntie Nusaybah prepared, as well as their neighbours who had pitched in too, Abi had to make two whole trips to take the food in his car since there was no space.
“It was a wonderful idea Hamaad,” Abi said as he started the engine.
“What made you think of it?” Abdullah asked.
“It was when Ummi told me not to waste food since so many people didn’t have anything to eat. I thought about how much food we waste on such happy days and thought why not give them to those unfortunate people,” Hamaad said.
“That was really good of you to think of that,” Yusuf said.
“Yeah,” Abduallah agreed. “We did lose you, but we found something as well.”
“What?” Hamaad asked.
“Reward and satisfaction.”
“I am glad I was part of it. I feel as though we have accomplished something amazing on this wonderful day,” Aminah said, beaming.
“Just remember, next time, “ Hafsah said, “Let us know what you’re doing!”
The car filled with the sound of laughter and teasing instantly, as the beautiful day of Eid came to an end. Alhamdulillah, all Praise is for Allah, for blessing us with the special month of Ramadan and the exciting days of Eid!
- So children, even though it is a day to celebrate, it is not a day to waste. Always be mindful of those who are less fortunate than you. Allah says in Surah An’aam , ayah 141 : “And waste not by extravagance. Verily, He (Allah) likes not Al-Musrifin (those who waste by extravagance).” So make sure to eat everything on your plate. Don’t fill up your plate to the brim; you will not be able to finish it. Take little by little and keep some space in your stomach empty.
- Remember to thank Allah for giving you wonderful food, beautiful clothes to wear, family and friends to celebrate Eid with.
We, the team at the Young Learner’s Corner, wish you a blessed and fantabulous Eid. Enjoy it to the maximum! Eid Mubarak!
Written by Maryam Yousuf
The wind was blowing softly in the cool night air. The sun was nowhere in sight leaving the city in utter darkness. The streets were silent and not a sound could be heard from anywhere, except from one particular Muslim house.
“Abdullaaaaaaaah!” Aminah called out, loud enough to wake up an entire village. “Get out of the bathroom.”
Day 27 / Juzz 27
“Has the time not come for those who have believed that their hearts should become humbly submissive at the remembrance of Allah and what has come down of the truth? And let them not be like those who were given the Scripture before, and a long period passed over them, so their hearts hardened; and many of them are defiantly disobedient.” (Hadid: 16)
These ayahs are very powerful. They are supposed to take nations of Muslims that are weak in faith, and they are supposed to shake them up and revive their faith. And Allah has this way of speaking to us, such that it is life – changing.
Allah says: “Has the time not come for those who have believed that their hearts should become humbly submissive at the remembrance of Allah and what has come down of the truth?” Meaning, that just listening to the Qur’an should fill us with awe and overwhelm us. Allah is asking, isn’t it time you felt something? Felt in awe that Allah is talking to you through these words? Allah says, Don’t be like those whose hearts became hardened because they weren’t emotionally connected to the book. We are meant to have a relationship with the Qur’an which moves us to tears. That Allah is talking to ME. We shouldn’t only have an intellectual relationship with the Qur’an but an emotional relationship too. Why? Because this is the rope that connects us to Allah; the Qur’an.
Part of the meaning of Khushu’ is that mucles/limbs become numb. That you feel this sense of overwhelming awe of Allah and His Majesty.
Allah then says, “And many of them are defiantly disobedient.” Meaning, people will have just a ritualistic relationship with the Qur’an which is a tragedy because the hearts become hard and dead.
In the verse following onto this, He (swt) then says, “Allah gives life to the earth after it has died.” In the last ayah the hearts became hard; they were dead. Allah says if I can bring the dead to life, then I too can bring your heart back to life. SubhanAllah.
Ramadhan is the spring of our hearts. It’s when our hearts come alive because we are connected to the Qur’an. So make the most of these remaining few days to build on your emotional relationship with the Qur’an and let your heart be filled with awe.
May Allah make us amongst the people of the Qur’an, amongst those who are closest to Allah, ameen.
Day 26 / Juzz 26
“Indeed, We have sent you as a witness and a bringer of good tidings and a warner.
That you [people] may believe in Allah and His Messenger and honor him and respect the Prophet and exalt Allah morning and afternoon.”
To understand these two ayahs we have to understand transition. For example, if you’re teaching a class and you have a TA with you, you’re going to be addressing both the class who are plural, and your TA who is singular, all at once.
So here, Allah is addressing the Prophet ( Salallahu alayhi wasallam), and then He is addressing us as singular. As though He is saying, you do this, and you do this, but it’s still one conversation.
So Allah says: “No doubt about it We have sent you (salallahu alayhi wasallam) as a witness.” Which is something quite scary and instilled fear in the hearts of the Sahaabahs. So Allah quickly fills their hearts with hope again by following this with, “and a giver of good tidings.” He then continues and mentions a third reason why He sent the messenger (salallahu alayhi wasallam), “as a warner.”
Then He turns to the Muslims (us), I have sent him (salallahu alayhi wasallam) as a messenger “so YOU could believe in Allah and His messenger.” Allah uses the word وَتُعَزِّرُوهُ – meaning honour the messenger out of an overwhelming respect for him. So we should have this overwhelming respect which drives us to help him.
So how are we supposed to help him (salallahu alayhi wasallam) when he is no longer in our company? Allah teaches us the Du’aa the Rasulullah (salallahu alayhi wasallam) used to make which he taught us to make: “O Allah help whoever helps the religion of Muhammad. ”
So when we are serving Allah’s deen, we’re not only trying to please Allah but we’re respecting and honouring our beloved messenger (salallahu alayhi wasallam) at the same time.
Allah then says: وَتُوَقِّرُوهُ meaning, have the utmost respect for Muhammad (salallahu alayhi wasallam). He is a grand personality. Your whole attitude should change when you hear his name. You should be so humbled when his name is mentioned that you are instantly filled with an unmatched respect for him (salallahu alayhi wasallam).
Allah then finishes off with, “And you should declare Allah’s perfection night and day.”
Look at this! The first thing the ayah talked about was Allah, then the Messenger (salallahu alayhi wasallam) and then it ends with Allah. Meaning, if you don’t have respect for the messenger you won’t know what it means to glorify the perfection of Allah.
May Allah grant us a burning desire to serve His deen and may He make us amongst those who respect and honour His messenger (salallahu alayhi wasallam), ameen.
Day 24 / Juzz 24
Say, “O My servants who have transgressed against themselves [by sinning], do not despair of the mercy of Allah . Indeed, Allah forgives all sins. Indeed, it is He who is the Forgiving, the Merciful.” [39:53]
Allah addresses us in this ayah as “My servants.” عباد is different from عبيد .عبيد is used in the Qur’an for those slaves who do not obey Allah. However, عباد is used for good slaves, and even though this ayah is about sinners, Allah still addresses them as *His slaves* to give them hope.
Then Allah says “Those who have transgressed against themselves” or those who have crossed the line. Here, Allah is addressing the one who got close to the sin and fell into sin, so much so that he has piled sin upon sin. Yet, Allah is reminding, I know you’ve sinned, I know you’ve done so much wrong, but don’t cut your connection with Me, because you are still My slaves. You might even feel that your sin is too huge, but Allah is saying, “Do not despair of the Mercy of Allah.” In other words, don’t lose hope, don’t be depressed from the mercy, love and care of Allah. Don’t think that His love, care and concern is so small that your sin is bigger than that, because there is never going to be a time in your life where you can inhale and exhale, and that Allah’s Mercy will be closed, His door of Mercy is wide open. Remember that.
If the people who are going to be in the lowest pit of hellfire (the hypocrites), if they even still have hope, then what about you and I? You should never ever think that you are beyond the Mercy of Allah. People might think you’re bad and write you off, but Allah will never write you off.
There are people who are messed up totally, but they might pray one prayer every Friday, that’s the only connection with Allah they have left, but at least they left that one door open. That door is enough, because you can now turn back and repent to Allah.
Allah is telling you He loves you. He wants you to turn back to Him and re-think your life.
Now is the time to turn back to Allah. Just sit there at night and cry your heart out to Allah. Talk to Him and tell Him everything you’ve done. Allah says He will forgive ALL of them. It’s done. He will forgive all your sins, but you just admit them and turn back to Him.
May Allah make us sincere in our repentance and accept our Taubah, ameen.
Day 23 / Juzz 23
Allah says in Surah Saad:
جَنَّاتِ عَدْنٍ مُفَتَّحَةً لَهُمُ الْأَبْوَابُ
“Gardens of perpetual residence, whose doors will be opened to them.” 38:50
Here, Allah uses the word, مُفَتَّحَةً, which means ‘held open.’ So the way Allah describes the gates of Jannah is that they are left open already, they won’t be opened on the Day of Judgment, they are already open. Allah doesn’t use the word مفتوح, which means just to leave open, He uses مُفَتَّحَةً which indicates that the door is open wide. It suggests that someone has been assigned to hold the door open.
Imagine this scenario. A guest comes over to your house and you’re so worried about making things convenient for them, you leave the door slightly open so they don’t have to wait outside. But even then, the guest might hesitate seeing the door slightly open. So, you assign one of your children to stand by the door to let them in, to make them feel more welcome, and so that there is no inconvenience for a wait. How would they feel? So much more honored and welcom right?
This is the Mercy of Allah towards us. This is what Allah does for us! He has kept the gates of Jannah open to make us feel more welcome and honored.
Now if we move on to the next Surah, Zumar, Allah talks about the people of the hell fire. He says:
وَسِيقَ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا إِلَىٰ جَهَنَّمَ زُمَرًا ۖ حَتَّىٰ إِذَا جَاءُوهَا فُتِحَتْ أَبْوَابُهَا وَقَالَ لَهُمْ خَزَنَتُهَا أَلَمْ يَأْتِكُمْ رُسُلٌ مِنْكُمْ يَتْلُونَ عَلَيْكُمْ آيَاتِ رَبِّكُمْ وَيُنْذِرُونَكُمْ لِقَاءَ يَوْمِكُمْ هَٰذَا ۚ قَالُوا بَلَىٰ وَلَٰكِنْ حَقَّتْ كَلِمَةُ الْعَذَابِ عَلَى الْكَافِرِين
“And those who disbelieved will be driven to Hell in groups until, when they reach it, its gates are opened and its keepers will say, ‘Did there not come to you messengers from yourselves, reciting to you the verses of your Lord and warning you of the meeting of this Day of yours?'” 39:71
The word سِيقَ here means, rushed. The people of hellfire, they will be pushed towards Jahannam! The closer they get, the more reluctant they will be to go further. Allah says that these people will be separated into groups. People will be broken up according to their sins.
Then Allah says “Until, when they reach it.” So once the people get to the hellfire Allah says “its gates are opened.” What this indicates is that the gates of Jahnnam were not open already, they’re being opened now. Allah has left the gates of Jannah open because He wants us to go into Paradise, He wants to welcome us in! But because He doesn’t want people to go into the hellfire He keeps its gates closed. How beautiful is that?
I listened to the recitation of the 29th Juz by Sheikh Murtadha Bakour. His tone stresses during his recitation allowed me to learn:
➡The reality of Ar-Rahman from Surah Mulk.
➡The reality of Sujood from Surah Al-Qalam.
➡The reality of the obedience and disobedience from Surah Al-Haaqqah.
➡The reality of mankind and the excellence of people of piety from Surah Al-Ma’aarij.
➡The reality of seeking forgiveness (istighfaar) from Surah Nooh.
➡The reality of Tauheed from Surah Jinn.
➡The reality of pondering over the Qur’an, Tahajjud and Istighfaar, especially for a caller to Islam.
I also learnt collectively from the recitation, the reality of the day of judgement and the fragility of this life, along with it’s contents.
Indeed this Qur’an is amazing and beyond the ability to describe.
May Allah inspire us to live by the Qur’an and may Allah raise us with the family of AlQur’an on the day of judgement.
Your brother- Sajid Umar