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New Muslims Prayer

The Muslim Prayer: Its Rules and Timing

What are the rules of Muslim prayer? How do we shorten the prayer? And when is it applicable? When should we make for the missed prayer? Are there times when it is wrong to pray?

Shortening the Prayer

When a person is travelling with the intention of proceeding forty eight miles or over from his home he should shorten the obligatory prayers of four units to two each.

What are the rules of Muslim prayer?

As a rule, every Muslim, male or female, should offer the prayer in its due time.

The curtailment is applicable to the Noon (Zhuhr) Prayer, the Mid-Afternoon (`Asr) Prayer, and the Evening (`Ishaa’) Prayer. The Early Morning (Fajr) Prayer and the Sunset (Maghrib) Prayers remain unchanged.

This advantage remains effective even after the traveler arrives at his destination, if he does not intend to prolong his stay there for fifteen days or more. Otherwise, he should offer the reducible prayers in their original and complete number of units.

While traveling under these circumstances, he is exempt from all supererogatory prayers (sunnah) except the two sunnah units of the Early Morning (Fajr) and Witr which follows the Evening (`Ishaa’) prayers

There are some minor differences of interpretation between the various schools of law regarding the travel distance and the travel duration.

Times When Muslim Prayer is Forbidden

The Muslim is forbidden to offer either obligatory or supererogatory prayers at:

1- The time when the sun is rising;

2- The time when the sun is at its zenith;

3- The time when the sun is setting;

4- The period of menstruation or confinement due to childbirth

5- The time of impurity, partial or complete

It must be clarified that if a person forgets, oversleeps or misses a prayer, he must perform it immediately when he remembers regardless of the position of the sun.

Making up for Delayed Prayers

1- As a rule, every Muslim, male or female, should offer the prayer in its due time. Failing to do so is a punishable sin unless there is a reasonable excuse for delay.

2- With the exception of women in confinement or menstruation and any who remain insane or unconscious for some time, every Muslim must make up for his or her delayed obligatory prayers.

3- When making up for the delayed prayers one must offer them in their original form, e.g., if they were due shortened they should be offered so and vice-versa.

4- Order between the delayed prayers and between these and the present ones should be maintained, i.e., the first in due-ness is offered first unless the missed prayers are too many to remember their exact dates, or the time available is not sufficient for both missed and present prayers.

In this case, the present prayer comes first and the missed ones may be offered later. At any rate, the Muslim must make certain that his record is clear to the best of his knowledge, and that there are no missed prayers.

The Taraweeh Prayers

These prayers are special characteristic of the month of Ramadan. They follow the Evening (‘Ishaa’ ) Prayers. They consist of eight to twenty units (Rak’ ahs) offered two by two with short break between each two units. It is much more preferable to say them in a congregational form and before the Witr, which is the last part of the Evening Prayer.

Invalidation of Prayers

Any prayer becomes invalid and nullified by any act of the following:

1- To anticipate the Imam in any act or movement of prayer;

2- To eat or drink during the prayer;

3- To talk or say something out of the prescribed course of prayers;

4- To shift the position away from the direction of qiblah in Mecca; unless it is

impossible to the worshipper to face the qiblah;

5- To do intentionally and unnecessary any noticeable act or movement outside the acts and movements of prayer;

6- To do anything that nullifies the ablution, e.g., discharge of urine, stool, gas, blood, etc.; unless due to a medical condition not in the worshipper’ s control, in this case the worshipper needs to perform ablution only once for every fard (obligatory) prayer, and he should not repeat the ablution to perform the Sunnah prayer relative to that Fard prayer

7- To fail in observing any of the essential acts of prayers, like standing, reciting the Qur’an, ruku’, sujud, etc.; unless for reasons of disability or physical ailment.

8- To uncover the body between the navel and knees during the prayer in the case of males; and in the case of females, to uncover any part of the body, except the face and the hands.

Any prayer which becomes invalidated must be repeated properly.

_________________________

The article is excerpted from the author’s well-known book “Islam in Focus”.

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New Muslims Prayer

Friday Prayer: Its Rules & Manner

The obligatory (fard) Prayer in Islam includes the five daily prayers and the weekly noon congregational prayer; Friday Prayer. Failure to observe these prayers on time is a serious and punishable sin.

Friday prayer

It is a convention for the Muslims to reassure themselves, confirm their religious bonds and social solidarity.

The Islamic congregation is a positive answer to the acutest problems of humanity rising from racial discrimination, social castes and human prejudices.

In the congregational service of Islam, there is no king or subject, rich or poor, white or colored, first or second class, back or front benches, reserved or public pews. All worshippers stand and act shoulder to shoulder in the most disciplinary manner regardless of any worldly considerations.

The Friday Prayer (Salatu Al-Jumu`ah)

This weekly convention of Friday Congregation is compulsory upon every Muslim who is required to observe the other prayers and has no reasonable excuses to abstain.

It falls on Friday of every week and is especially important because:

1- It is the occasion earmarked by God for the Muslims to express their collective devotion.

2- It is an appointment to review our spiritual accounts of the week gone by and get ready for the following week just as people do in any other business.

3- It is a convention for the Muslims to reassure themselves and confirm their religious bonds and social solidarity on moral and spiritual foundations.

4- It shows how the Muslims give preference to the call of God over and above any other concern

Muslim of the Daylight Saving time zones seem to run into some difficulties and confusion over the proper time for the Friday Congregational Prayer (Jumu`ah). The problem can be solved easily by setting the prayer time between 1:15 to 2.30 p.m. throughout year.

In this way there will be no need to change the time from winter to summer. We strongly recommend this to our brethren so that they may work it into their weekly schedules as a permanent arrangement.

The Highlights of the Friday Prayer

This prayer of Friday is marked by these features:

1- Its time falls in the same time as that of the noon prayer (Zhuhr Prayer), and it replaces the very same prayer.

2- It must be said in a congregation led by an Imam, no single person can offer it by himself.

3- If any person misses it, he cannot make up for it; Instead, he has to offer the noon prayer, the original prayer which this service normally replaces

4- All kinds of normal work are allowed on Friday as on any other week day. For Muslims there is no Sabbath. They can carry on with their usual duties and activities provided they come to the congregational service in time. After the service is over, they may resume their mundane activities.

5- This Friday prayer must be performed in a mosque, if there is one available. Otherwise, it may be said at any gathering place e.g. homes, farms, parks. etc.

6- When the time for prayer comes, the adhan is said, the Imam stands up, facing the audience and delivers his sermon (khutbah) which is an essential part of the service.

Muslims are recommended to offer Sunnah prayers before the sermon. As for those who will arrive at the mosque during the sermon they should offer the two brief units of the Sunnah prayer “Tahiyatu Al-Masjid” (Mosque greetings) and then sit down to listen.

While the Imam is talking nobody should talk, everyone present should take a sitting position and listen to the sermon quietly to the end

7- The sermon (khutbah) consists of two parts each beginning with words of praise of God and prayers of blessing for Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). In the first part some Qur’anic passage must be recited and explained for the purpose of exhortation and admonition.

At the end of the first part the Imam takes a short rest in the sitting posture, then stands up to deliver the second part of his sermon. General affairs of the Muslims may be stated in either or both parts of the sermon. In the second part, especially, the Imam prays for the general welfare of all Muslims

8- After that, the Iqamah is made and the two obligatory units are offered under the leadership of the Imam who recites Al-Fatihah and the other Qur’anic passage in audible voice. When this is done, the prayer is completed. After that, Sunnah prayers may be offered individually in a low voice.

The Sunnah prayers may be offered at home. Also they may be replaced with some obligatory prayers that one has missed in the past and for which one has to make up.

Any participant in the Friday weekly congregation or `Eid Prayers should do his best to be neat and tidy.

Though there is no compulsory reason for a complete ablution, a bath is strongly recommended as it makes one fresher and more pleasant.

_________________________

The article is excerpted from the author’s well-known book “Islam in Focus”.

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Categories
New Muslims Prayer

Night Prayer Negligence and Its 13 Losses

The Night Prayer or Qiyam Al-Layl stands for the practice by Muslims as they stand in the night in prayer. This prayer extends from the time immediately after `Isha’ Prayer until the Fajr (i.e., Dawn) Prayer.

Merits of Night Prayer

Many hadiths (narrations) by Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) as well as verses of the Qur’an show the significance as well as importance of the Night Prayer and the merits attributed to those who regularly and properly perform it.

Night Prayer Negligence and Its 13 Losses

“You should pray Qiyam al-Layl, for it is the habit of the righteous people who came before you, and it will bring you closer to your Lord”

Allah the Almighty says what may mean,

“O you who wraps himself (in clothing), arise (to pray) the night, except for a little – half of it – or subtract from it a little or add to it, and recite the Qur’an with measured recitation.” (Al-Muzammil 73: 1-4)

The Prophet (Peace be upon him) is reported to have said:

“Allah, Our Lord, descends (in a manner befitting His Majesty) to the nearest heaven to us of this universe during the last third of the night and says: ‘Is there anyone to call upon Me so that I shall respond to him (fulfill his prayer). Is there anyone to ask of Me that I may grant his request. Is there anyone to seek My forgiveness so that I shall pardon him (and forgive his sins)’.” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

The Prophet (Peace be upon him) also said: “You should pray Qiyam al-Layl, for it is the habit of the righteous people who came before you, and it will bring you closer to your Lord, expiate for bad deeds, prevent sin, and expel disease from the body.”(At-Tirmidhi and Ahmad)

Given this, what is it really that a Muslim loses if s/he abandons and/or neglects the Night Prayer?

At least, one will lose thirteen (13) precious things; foremost among which are what follows:

The First Loss

One will lose the entitlement to the title or description of `Ibad Al-Rahman (i.e. Servants of the Most Compassionate), as Allah the Almighty says,

“And the servants of the Most Merciful are those who walk upon the earth easily, and when the ignorant address them (harshly), they say (words of) peace. And those who spend (part of) the night to their Lord prostrating and standing (in prayer).” (Al-Furqan 25: 63-64)

The Second Loss

He will lose entitlement to the title or description of “the Righteous”, as Allah the Almighty says,

“Indeed, the righteous will be among gardens and springs. Accepting what their Lord has given them. Indeed, they were before that doers of good. They used to sleep but little of the night. And in the hours before dawn they would ask forgiveness.” (Al-Dhariyat 51: 15-18)

The Third Loss

He will lose entitlement to the title or description of “the Devoutly Obedient” or “the People of Understanding”, as Allah the Almighty says what may mean,

“Is one who is devoutly obedient during periods of the night, prostrating and standing (in prayer), fearing the Hereafter and hoping for the mercy of his Lord, (like one who does not)? Say, “Are those who know equal to those who do not know?” Only they will remember (who are) people of understanding.” (Al-Zumar39: 9)

The Fourth Loss

He will lose the “high unique station” designated for those standing in prayer at night, as Allah says,

“They are not (all) the same; among the People of the Scripture is a community standing (in obedience), reciting the verses of Allah during periods of the night and prostrating (in prayer).” (Aal `Imran 3: 113)

The Fifth Loss

He will lose the chance that “supplication may be answered” such as that of Prophet Zakariya, as Allah the Almighty says what may mean,

“So the angels called him while he was standing in prayer in the chamber, “Indeed, Allah gives you good tidings of John, confirming a word from Allah and (who will be) honorable, abstaining (from women), and a prophet from among the righteous.” (Aal `Imran 3: 39)

The Sixth Loss

He will lose the chance to “be protected and assisted” by Allah the Almighty, Allah says,

“O you who wraps himself (in clothing). Arise (to pray) the night, except for a little – Half of it – or subtract from it a little. Or add to it, and recite the Qur’an with measured recitation. Indeed, We will cast upon you a heavy word. Indeed, the hours of the night are more effective for concurrence (of heart and tongue) and more suitable for words.” (Al-Muzammil 73: 1-6)

The Seventh Loss

He will lose the opportunity that his “good deeds do away with misdeeds” as one of the preconditions for this is that one performs the prayer at the approach of the night. Allah the Almighty says what may mean,

“And establish prayer at the two ends of the day and at the approach of the night. Indeed, good deeds do away with misdeeds. That is a reminder for those who remember.” (Hud 11: 114)

The Eighth Loss

He will lose the opportunity to “be resurrected to a praised station in Paradise”. Allah says in His Ever-Glorious Qur’an what may mean,

“And from (part of) the night, pray with it as additional (worship) for you; it is expected that your Lord will resurrect you to a praised station.” (Al-Isra’ 17: 79)

The Ninth Loss

He will lose “Allah’s Satisfaction” with him, as Allah says,

“So be patient over what they say and exalt ( Allah ) with praise of your Lord before the rising of the sun and before its setting; and during periods of the night (exalt Him) and at the ends of the day, that you may be satisfied.” (Taha20: 130)

The Tenth Loss

He will lose “Allah’s constant care” about him. Allah the Almighty says in His Ever-Glorious Qur’an what may mean,

“And rely upon the Exalted in Might, the Merciful. Who sees you when you arise. And your movement among those who prostrate.” (Al-Shu’ara’ 26: 217-219)

The Eleventh Loss

He will lose the opportunity to be among those regarding whom Allah says “You are in Our Eyes”. Allah says in the Qur’an what may mean,

“And be patient, (O Muhammad), for the decision of your Lord, for indeed, you are in Our eyes. And exalt ( Allah ) with praise of your Lord when you arise. And in a part of the night exalt Him and after (the setting of) the stars.” (Al-Tur 52: 48-49)

The Twelfth Loss

He will lose the “good that is hidden” for those who stand in prayer in the night. Allah says,

“And no soul knows what has been hidden for them of comfort for eyes as reward for what they used to do.” (Al-Sajdah 32: 17)

The Thirteenth Loss

He will lose the chance to “follow the sunnah” of Prophet Muhammad and his companions. Allah the Almighty says in the Qur’an,

“Indeed, your Lord knows, (O Muhammad), that you stand (in prayer) almost two thirds of the night or half of it or a third of it, and (so do) a group of those with you.” (Al-Muzammil 73: 20)

Given this, will a sane Muslim do without, neglect or abandon standing in prayer in the night or the Night Prayer? I doubt it!

Again, the Prophet  said:

“Verily, there is one hour during the (entire) night when any Muslim (submitting to the Will of Allah the Almighty) may call upon Allah and request anything of Him, regardless of whether the matter be worldly or of the hereafter. Allah, the Almighty will grant and fulfill the request. This is the case every night.” (Muslim)

_________________________

The article is taken from truth-seeker.info written by Dr. Ali Al-Halawani

Dr. Ali Al-Halawani is Assistant Professor of Linguistics and Translation, Kulliyyah of Languages and Management (KLM), International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM), Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. He was Assistant Professor and worked for a number of international universities in Malaysia and Egypt such as Al-Madinah International University, Shah Alam, Malaysia (Mediu) and Misr University for Science & Technology (MUST), Egypt; Former Editor-in-Chief of the Electronic Da`wah Committee (EDC), Kuwait; Former Deputy Chief Editor and Managing Editor of the Living Shari`ah Department, www.islamOnline.net; Member of the International Union of Muslim Scholars (IUMS); and member of the World Association of Arab Translators & Linguists (Wata). He is a published writer, translator and researcher. You can reach him at alihalawani72@hotmail.com.

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New Muslims Prayer

Praying on Time: Between Deep Faith & Fashionable Identity

The struggle to find a prayer space for praying at work is familiar to many Muslim Americans, but it’s magnified even more in creative fields like fashion….

Praying: Life Example

Muslims praying

Our faith is so deeply intertwined with our identity that we can’t compartmentalize it out of myself at work.

I’m sitting in a cubicle farm. The minutes are ticking away and time is quickly running out. If I don’t do it now, I’ll miss my chance. I could just ask somebody. But I’m new here and barely know anyone.

Shifty-eyed, I assess my surroundings to gauge the possibility of getting caught, contemplating the backlash that potentially awaits me. Finally, internal debate gives way to desperation and I just go for it.

I crawl under my desk and create a makeshift barricade with a trash bin and desk chair to block myself from view as much as possible. I hope to God no one comes by to ask me where we’re at on that brand statement. I pull my scarf over my head, and hastily offer my afternoon prayers.

Mental Break

The requirements for Muslim prayers aren’t burdensome. A clean space and five or ten minutes are all you need. There are five daily prayers and depending on daylight savings, one to three of them fall squarely within the confines of the 9-to-5 work day.

Solitary prayers are a keenly personal act. They require focus, concentration and detachment from the hustle and bustle of life as you silently recite Qur’anic passages to yourself. In this respect, the divine communication is no different from meditating, practicing yoga, or taking a quiet mental break. All are meant to renew your spirit and take your mind off of everyday minutiae.

Muslim prayers also involve certain movements like standing, bowing and prostrating- which is where things get tricky. It’s not exactly something you can do incognito. Nothing is more clumsily awkward than a coworker finding you mid-prayer. The whole experience is akin to having someone unwittingly walk in to a bathroom stall you’re currently using. There’s lots of apologizing on both sides, avoidance of eye contact and pretending afterward that the whole thing never happened.

The struggle to find a prayer space at work is familiar to many Muslim Americans, but it’s magnified even more in creative fields like fashion, where typically few Muslims end up. As a “creative type” who has worked at several fashion brands, I’ve almost always been the lone Muslim employee.

Consequently, I’ve developed the special ability to ferret out secluded nooks and crannies for prayer at work. I’ve found office gyms with changing rooms are usually the best bet for privacy and low risk of intrusion.

Sometimes I’ll pray in my car as a last resort, though it’s tough getting spiritual in a metal can that’s been baking in the Southern California heat, especially when your coworkers are pulling up to the spot next to you, fresh off a Starbucks run.

But that brings in a host of potential complications. Like so many millions of Muslim women around the world, my version of modesty does not include donning the hijab, the headscarf that anyone with a cable news subscription will recognize as a “marker” of Muslim-ness, albeit an arbitrary one. Not visually standing out in this way actually makes it that much more difficult to bring up the “Muslim conversation” and the related “prayer conversation”.

Without the visual reference, I’m simply an ethnic-looking person who seems to have assimilated into modern Western society completely, given my proficiency in non-accented English and ability to discuss the finer points of the Real Housewives franchise. Unless I volunteer that I am, in fact, Muslim, I can pass.

Unfortunately for me, the last thing Muslims are perceived as is arbiters of cool.

Adding to all of this is the fact that I’ve been working in marketing and fashion since I graduated college. These industries thrive on what’s au courant, trending, and viral. Somehow, a 1400-year-old tradition of daily prayer doesn’t fit in with that sort of ethos. Sometimes appearing outwardly religious at work can be a turnoff, like you’re out of touch with the times.

Seeking Wholeness

Sometimes, you’re afraid that asking for allowances for religious reasons might make you appear like a slacker asking for extra breaks. And sometimes you really just don’t want to become the go-to girl for questions on ISIS. Because, honestly? I don’t have any more answers than you do.

This paranoia does not come from nowhere. The worry that you might be seen as someone foreign and weird is one that any second-generation kid born and brought up in America lives with. But for Muslim Americans that fear is compounded by the way Islam is wildly misconstrued in the media as a backward and oppressive religion that needs to be brought into the 21st century.

So I resolve to keep that part of myself out of the office because I’ve found that matters of religion, especially those pertaining to Islam, can make others feel uncomfortable. I don’t want my coworkers to feel they need to handle me with kid gloves for fear of coming off as culturally insensitive. I want to be able to joke, jive and have a rapport with them. Some of the most creative ideas I’ve had were borne from those kinds of team relationships.

I just want them to think I’m normal.

But that afternoon, cowering under my desk to pray, I realize something: My faith is so deeply intertwined with my identity that I can’t compartmentalize it out of myself at work. And pre-emptively judging my new colleagues, assuming they’re too narrow-minded to understand, is unwarranted on my part.

My faith is so deeply intertwined with my identity that I can’t compartmentalize it out of myself at work.

On Balance

The next day, I gather up my courage and walk over to my manager. I imagine her giving me a look of sheer bewilderment as I reveal this deep dark secret about who I really am. I picture her discussing this moment with girlfriends in a hushed tone over drinks. I hesitate for a few seconds, stumbling over how to frame the question, before sputtering out my request.

“Sure, there’s a conference room,” she says without a hint of surprise or shock, before directing me to the holy grail of secret prayer spots: a room, tucked away in a deserted hallway, with no windows and a door that locks. I’m flooded with relief and thank her profusely.

“All you had to do was ask,” she nonchalantly responds, as if it were no big deal.

Because, in fact, it is not a big deal.

_________________________

Source: racked.com

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Categories
Divine Unity New Muslims

Islam, Muslims, and the One God

By Sulaiman Dufford

nature

A Muslim is any person anywhere in the world whose obedience, allegiance, and loyalty are to God.

Islam and Muslims

The name of this religion is Islam, the Arabic root of which is “silm” or “salam”, both meaning peace. “Salam” may also mean greeting one another with peace.

One of the beautiful names of God is that He is “As-Salam” (The Peace), but this Divine Name also means more than that: it means submission to the One God, and living in peace with the Creator. It means living in peace with one’s self, with other people, and with the natural environment.

A Muslim is supposed to live in peace and harmony with all these segments. Hence, a Muslim is any person anywhere in the world whose obedience, allegiance, and loyalty are to God, the Lord of the universe, and to the innate harmony of His Creation. Thus, Islam is a total system of living.

Muslims and Arabs

The followers of Islam are called Muslims. Muslims are not to be confused with Arabs. Muslims may be Arabs, Turks, Persians, Indians, Pakistanis, Malaysians, Indonesians, Europeans, Africans, Americans, Chinese, Russians, or other nationalities.

An Arab could be a Muslim, a Christian, a Jew, or an atheist. Any person who adopts the Arabic language is called an Arab. However, the language of the Qur’an (the Revealed Book of Islam) is also Arabic. Muslims all over the world try to learn Arabic so that they may be able to read the Qur’an and understand its meaning.

Although personal supplications can be in any language, Muslims pray their five required daily prayers in the language of the Qur’an, namely Arabic, which is also, and perhaps not by coincidence, one of the most stable, sophisticated, and beautiful languages in modern history.

Thus, whereas some religions have their liturgical languages (such as the Catholics used to have Latin), the Muslims are blessed with more than that. The Muslims have a “revelatory language”, the unchanged and incorruptible language in which the Qur’an was actually received.

The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) was confronted and entranced by the Angel Gabriel off and on over a period of years in both Makkah and Medina, and all of these segments of the Qur’an were immediately dictated to his Companions.

Yet, even though there are more than a billion Muslims in the world, there are only about two hundred million Arabs, of whom about ten percent are not Muslim. Thus, Arab Muslims constitute only about twenty percent of the Muslim population of the world.

Allah, the One and Only God

Although Allah is the name of the One and Only God, we may call Him by ninety-nine other beautiful names, such as: The Gracious, The Merciful, The Beneficent, The Creator, The All-Knowing, The All-Wise, The Lord of the Universe, The First, The Last, and others.

He is the Creator of all human beings. He is the God for the Christians, the Jews, the Muslims, the Buddhists, the Hindus, the atheists, and others. Muslims put their trust entirely in Allah, and they seek only His help and only His guidance.

Muhammad

Muhammad (peace be upon him) was chosen by God to deliver His message of peace, namely Islam. Muhammad was born in 570 C.E. (Christian or Common Era), in Makkah in Arabia. He was entrusted with the message of Islam when he was at the age of forty years. The revelation that he received is called the Qur’an, while the message is called Islam.

Muhammad is considered to be the summation and the culmination of all the prophets and messengers that came before him. He purified the previous messages from adulteration and completed the message of God for all humanity.

He was also entrusted with the power of explaining, interpreting, and living the teachings of the Qur’an. When asked why he did not perform miracles as other prophets before him were said to have done, he replied that the Qur’an was his miracle.

The Sources of Islam

The legal sources of Islam are the Qur’an and the Hadith. The Qur’an contains the exact words of God- its authenticity, originality, and totality are intact.

The Hadith are reports by Companions of Muhammad of indisputable integrity of the sayings, deeds, and explanations of the Prophet Muhammad. The Prophet’s sayings and deeds themselves are called “Sunnah”. Those related to explication of verses of the Qur’an are considered binding upon all Muslims.

Those Hadith related to Prophet Muhammad’s dress and personal behavior as an Arab are considered optional. However, the “seerah”, or writings of followers of Muhammad about his life and actions, provide examples of daily living for Muslims.

The Islamic Creed

Muslims, or those who wish to convert to Islam, must agree to and hold the following beliefs as inviolable:

1- Oneness of God

He is One and the Only One. He is not two-in-one or three-in-one. This means that Islam rejects the idea of a trinity, a son of God, or any man-god. By implication, people are created equal in front of the Law of God. There is no superiority for one race over another.

However, God has created the races with different ethnic cultures, colors, languages, beliefs, and skills, so as to interest and inspire one another. The Qur’anic teaching is that the different races are meant to be complementary, not confrontational. The concept is global, not tribal.

If there is superiority among mankind, it is only God Who knows what it really is. It is only God Who knows which men or women are among the truly pious or the truly righteous.

2- The Revealed Books

Christians, Jews, and Muslims are all “People of the Book“. All have received teachings revealed directly from God, and perhaps others before them have received revealed Books as well, even though their books may have been lost or fragmented.

The Qur’an, being the only fully authentic and unchanged of the revealed Books, is considered the final treasure given to mankind. Further advice is not needed, only deeper understanding of divine advice already given in the Qur’an, as well as earlier books. Muslims are required to believe in and respect all revealed Books that have descended to mankind throughout its history.

God promised in the Qur’an to protect its contents until the end of history, and evidence of that protection can be found in the thousands and thousands of children, as well as devout adults, who can recite the entire Qur’an by memory, from cover to cover, as well as the millions who can and do recite portions of it every day of their lives.

3- The Prophets of God

Muslims believe that God sent different messengers throughout the history of mankind. All came with the same message and the same teachings. It was the people who misunderstood and misinterpreted them.

Muslims believe in, among others, Adam, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Ismail, Jacob, Moses, David, Jesus, and Muhammad. The prophets of Christianity and Judaism are indeed the Prophets of Islam. Even the Buddha may have been a prophet whose original teachings were lost or corrupted, since the Qur’an states that many prophets unknown to modern history also brought revealed Books and teachings. The Hindu Vedas may have been fragments of the Book brought by Abraham (Brahmanism).

4- Angels

Muslims believe that there are unseen creatures such as angels created by God for special missions in the universe. At the end of every prayer, Muslims give the greeting of “Peace” to the angels which accompany them over each shoulder – to the right, the Recording Angel for our good deeds; to the left, the Recording Angel for our sins.

The Qur’an was revealed and taught to Prophet Muhammad through the agency of the Angel Gabriel. The Prophet tells many stories in his Hadith about angels appearing in the world.

5- The Day of Judgment

Muslims believe that there is a Day of Judgment when all people of the world throughout the history of mankind till the last day of life on earth, are to be brought for accounting, reward, and punishment.

The Prophet enjoined all Muslims to hold the reality of this day in awe and trepidation, and to manage all their earthly affairs with the inevitability of this day in mind.

To that end, the Islamic rituals and actions have been given by God to the Prophet, and thence to all the Muslims, to protect and sharpen Muslims’ remembrance of the Last Day.

_________________________

Source: iiie.net

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Categories
Acts of Worship New Muslims

How to Offer the Funeral Prayer

funeral-prayer

The imam stands beside the body facing the qiblah at Mecca with the followers behind him in lines.

The prayer to God for the deceased Muslim is a common collective duty (Fard Kifayah). This means that some Muslims should offer this prayer, and when it is offered by some of the Muslims present at the time it is sufficient, and the other Muslims become exempt from responsibility.

– When a Muslim dies, the whole body – beginning with the exposed parts washed in ablution (wudu’ ) – must be washed a few times with soap or some other detergent or disinfectant, and cleaned of all visible impurities. A man washes a man and a woman washes a woman. A woman may wash her husband, and a man or woman may wash young children. During the washing, the washer’s hands should be covered by gloves or cloth, and the private parts of the dead body should be washed without being seen.

When the body is thoroughly clean, it is wrapped in one or more white cotton sheets covering all the parts of the body

– The dead body is then placed on a bier or in a coffin and carried to the place of prayer, a mosque or any other clean premises. The body is put in a position with the face toward the qiblah (direction of Makkah).

– All participants in the prayer must perform an ablution unless they are keeping an earlier one. The imam stands beside the body facing the qiblah at Mecca with the followers behind him in lines.

– The imam raises his hands to the ears declaring the intention in a low voice to pray to God for that particular deceased one, and saying Allahu Akbar (God is the Greatest). The worshippers follow the imam’s lead and after him place their right hands over the left ones under the navel as in others prayers

– Then the imam recites in a low voice the “Du’ a Thana’” and Al-Fatihah (the 1st chapter of the Qur’an) only.

– Then he says Allahu Akbar without raising his hands and recites the second part of the Tashahhud:

Allaahumma salli ‘ala Muhammadin wa ‘ala aali Muhammadin kamaa sallayta ‘ala Ibraheema wa ‘ala aali Ibraheem. Innaka hameedun majeed. Allaahumma baarik ‘ala Muhammadin wa ‘ala aali Muhammadin kamaa baarakta ‘ala Ibraheem wa ‘ala aali Ibraheem. Innaka hameedun majeed.” (O Allah, exalt Muhammad and the family of Muhammad as You exalted Ibrahim (Abraham) and the family of Ibrahim. Verily You are full of praise and majesty. O Allah, bless Muhammad and the family of Muhammad as You blessed Ibrahim and the family of Ibrahim. Verily, You are full of praise and majesty.)

– Then he makes the third takbir saying Allahu Akbar without raising the hands and offers a supplication (du`aa’ ) in any suitable words he knows, preferably these

O God! Grant forgiveness to our living and to our dead, and to those who are present and to those who are absent. And to our young and to our old folk, and to our males and to our females. O God! whomsoever You grant to live, from among us, help him to live in Islam, and whomsoever of us You cause to die, help him to die in faith. O God! Do not deprive us of the reward for patience on his loss, and do not make us subject to trial after him.”

– Then the fourth takbir (saying Allahu Akbar) without raising the hands is made followed by the concluding peace greetings right and left as in other prayers. It should be remembered that the worshippers behind in lines follow the lead of the Imam step by step and recite privately the same utterances in low voice.

– After completing the Prayer, the body is carried to the graveyard, there the body is lowered in the grave for burial with the face resting in the direction of Mecca. When lowering the body down these words are said:

“In the name of God and with God, and according to the Sunnah (Traditions) of the Messenger of God upon whom be the blessings and peace of God.”

– Besides these, any other fit prayers may be offered. If the deceased is a child under the age of puberty, the prayer is the same except that after the third Takbeer and instead of that long supplication the worshippers recite these words:

“O God! Make him (or her) our fore-runner, and make him for us a reward and a treasure, and make him for us a pleader, and accept his pleading.”

The whole funeral prayer is offered in the standing position.

Whenever a funeral procession passes by, be it of a Muslim or otherwise, every Muslim should stand out of respect for the dead.

The grave should be built and marked in a simple way. The dead body should be covered with white cotton sheets of standard material. Any extravagance in building the grave or dressing up the body in fine suits or the like is non-Islamic. It is false vanity and a waste of assets that can be used in many useful ways.

The custom of some Muslims of offering a big and costly banquet upon burial of the deceased is also non-Islamic and an irresponsible waste of money and effort that can be of infinite benefit If used otherwise.

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The article is excerpted from the author’s well-known book “Islam in Focus”.

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Acts of Worship New Muslims

What Did the Prophet say about Congregational Prayer?

By Editorial Staff

The Prophet (peace be upon him) encouraged Muslims to attend the congregational prayer at the mosque, warning against staying away from it, and that it is fard kifayah (collective obligation).

Congregational Prayer

“The prayer in congregation is twenty seven times superior to the prayer offered by person alone.”

Superiority of Congregational Prayer

Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) said, “The congregational prayer  is twenty seven times superior to the prayer offered by person alone.” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “The prayer of a man with another man is better than his praying alone, and the prayer of a man with two other men is better than his praying alone or with only one other man, and the more people there are, the more beloved it is to Allah.” (An-Nasa’i and Abu Dawud)

Also, it was narrated that Ma`dan ibn Abu Talhah Al-Ya`muri said:

Abud-Darda’ (may Allah be pleased with him) reported:

I heard the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) saying:

“If three men in a village or in the desert, make no arrangement for Salah (prayer) in congregation, Satan must have certainly overcome them. So observe prayer in congregation, for the wolf eats up a solitary sheep that stays far from the flock.” (Abu Dawud)

Anas bin Malik narrated that:

Allah’s Messenger said: “Whoever performs prayer for Allah for forty days in congregation, catching the first takbir, two absolutions are written for him: absolution from the Fire, and absolution from the Fire, and absolution from hypocrisy.” (At-Tirmidhi)

`Isha’ & Fajr

Uthman ibn `Affan (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that Allah’s Messenger said:

“Whoever attends `Isha’ (prayer) in congregation, then he has (the reward as if he had) stood half of the night. And whoever prays `Isha’ and Fajr in congregation, then he has (the reward as if he had) spent the entire night standing (in prayer).” (At-Tirmidhi)

`Uthman ibn `Affan reported:

I heard the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) saying: “One who performs `Isha’ (Night) prayer in congregation, is as if he has performed prayer for half of the night. And one who performs the Fajr prayer in congregation, is as if he has performed prayer the whole night.” (Muslim)

Narrated Abu Hurairah:

The Prophet said, “Allah will prepare for him who goes to the mosque (every) morning and in the afternoon (for the congregational prayer) an honorable place in Paradise with good hospitality for (what he has done) every morning and afternoon goings. (Al-Bukhari)

Narrated Abu Hurairah:

Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) said:

“If the people knew the reward for pronouncing the Adhan and for standing in the first row (in congregational prayers) and found no other way to get that except by drawing lots they would draw lots. And if they knew the reward of the Zhuhr prayer (in the early moments of its stated time), they would race for it (go early). And if they knew the reward of `Isha’ and Fajr (morning) prayers in congregation, they would come to offer them even if they had to crawl.” (Al-Bukhari)

Congregational Prayer

“For when one of you is walking for Salah, he is, in fact, engaged in Salah.”

More Virtuous

It was narrated that Ibn `Umar said:

“The Messenger of Allah said: “The prayer of a man in congregation is twenty-seven levels more virtuous than a man’s prayer on his own.” (Ibn Majah)

It was narrated that `Uthman ibn `Affan said:

“I heard the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) say: “Whoever does wudu’ (ablution) properly, then walks to (attend) the prescribed prayer, and prays with the people or with the congregation or in the Masjid, Allah will forgive him his sins.” (An-Nasa’i)

Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) reported:

I heard the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) saying, “When the Iqamah is pronounced, do not come to it running, you should walk calmly with tranquility to join the congregation. Then join in what you catch for and complete what you miss.” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

Narrated Abu Hurairah:

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “Allah will prepare for him who goes to the mosque (every) morning and in the afternoon (for the congregational prayer) an honorable place in Paradise with good hospitality for (what he has done) every morning and afternoon goings. (Al-Bukhari)

Abu Musa (may Allah be pleased with him) reported:

The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said,

“The person who will receive the highest reward for Salah (prayer) is the one who comes to perform it in the mosque from the farthest distance. And he who waits for Salah to perform it with the Imam (in congregation) will have a greater reward than the one who observes it alone and then goes to sleep.” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

Messenger of Allah peace be upon him) said, “For when one of you is walking for Salah, he is, in fact, engaged in Salah.” (Muslim)

Abu Hurairah reported Allah’s Messenger as saying:

“The servant is constantly in prayer so long as he is in a place of worship waiting for the prayer (to be observed in congregation), and the angels invoke (blessings upon him in these words): O Allah! pardon him. O Allah! show mercy to him, (and they continue to do so) till he returns (from the mosque having completed the prayer) or his ablution breaks. I said: How is the ablution broken? He said: By breaking of the wind noiselessly or with noise. (Muslim)

Narrated Abu Hurairah:

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said,

“The prayer offered in congregation is twenty five times more superior (in reward) to the prayer offered alone in one’s house or in a business center, because if one performs ablution and does it perfectly, and then proceeds to the mosque with the sole intention of praying, then for each step which he takes towards the mosque, Allah upgrades him a degree in reward and (forgives) crosses out one sin till he enters the mosque. When he enters the mosque he is considered in prayer as long as he is waiting for the prayer and the angels keep on asking for Allah’s forgiveness for him and they keep on saying: ‘O Allah! Be Merciful to him, O Allah! Forgive him, as long as he keeps on sitting at his praying place and does not pass wind.” (Al-Bukhari)

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New Muslims Zakah

The Blessings behind Zakah

The Blessings behind Zakah

Paying your zakah means that what is left of your money will be more blessed and more productive for you.

Deep down, you may think of zakah (obligatory alms) as a tiresome once-a-year event that simply involves a quick online payment of 2.5% of your cash and a bunch of gold weighed on scales in your kitchen! But there is a lot more to it. Fully understanding and practicing this beautiful Pillar of Islam can lead to a more productive and successful existence at both an individual and community level. How?

Paying your zakah correctly triggers some marvelous productivity boosters that you probably have never thought of! Here’s what actually happens to you and your life when you pay your zakat:

1- Purifying the Soul

Nothing prevents us more from reaching the heights of productivity than our sins. Day and night, we disobey Allah (Glorified and Exalted be He) in all sorts of ways, knowingly and unknowingly, blotting our hearts and blocking the light of Allah from entering them. One critical way of clearing out the junk from our hearts is to pay zakah.

Linguistically, zakah carries meanings of cleansing and purification, originating from the same root as the word tazkiyah. In fact, when Allah commanded the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) to collect zakah, He specifically mentioned its purifying power:

Take from their wealth a charity to cleanse and purify them through it and pray for them. Indeed your prayer gives them tranquility. And indeed Allah is All Hearing, All Knowing. (At-Tawbah 9:103)

2- Blessing the Wealth

Apart from purification, zakah also carries meanings of growth and enhancement. Paying your zakah means that what is left of your money will be more blessed and more productive for you. Our Prophet emphasized this by warning against delaying the payment of zakah or not paying it at all:

“Zakah is never intermingled with any amount of wealth without destroying and rotting it.” (Al-Bukhari)

It is said that zakah represents the ‘filth’ within our wealth, i.e. an amount that we may have incurred through some form of sin or dishonesty, however small or great. For our money to remain blessed, it is vital to get rid of the ‘filth’ as soon as possible. This is akin to the dross that is filtered from a blast furnace, leaving a pure, pristine metal behind.

3- Opportunities for the Poor and Needy

One doubtless benefit of zakah is to help the poor and needy become more productive. By freeing them of the immediate stress of meeting their very basic needs, distributing zakat effectively allows those in need to pursue opportunities to help them turn their lives around.

4- Incurring the Mercy of Allah

In a powerful verse in the Qur’an, Allah says:

…I afflict with My punishment whomsoever I choose, but My mercy encompasses everything. So I will prescribe it (i.e. My mercy) for those who are God conscious, pay Zakah and believe in Our signs. (Al-Anfal 7:156)

This verse is one of just two in Qur’an where zakah is not mentioned in conjunction with the obligatory prayer. Notice how Allah mentions the fulfillment of zakah in such an amazing position: between the qualities of taqwa (God-consciousness) and iman (belief) in His signs. At the same time, He (Exalted be He) makes paying zakah a direct cause for incurring His mercy, without which being productive would be utterly impossible.

5- Endless Rewards

Just after one of the most famous verses in the Qur’an, the Verse of Light, Allah mentions a special group of people:

Men who are not diverted by business or trade from the remembrance of Allah, establishing the prayer and paying zakat, fearing the day (of judgment) in which hearts and sights are turned upside down. (An-Nur 24:37)

Here Allah extols the virtues of those who are busy, productive and successful in a worldly sense, but at the same time do not allow themselves to forget the most important aspects of their faith: remembering their Lord, establishing the prayer and paying zakah.

Allah then promises them an amazing outcome:

Allah will recompense them according to the best of what they have done and He will grant them increase out of His bounty. Allah provides for whomsoever He wills without measure. (An-Nur 24:38)

May Allah (Exalted be He) make us among those mentioned in the above verse! May He enable Muslims everywhere to understand and fulfill their obligation of zakah, thereby incurring His mercy and pleasure. Ameen.

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Source: productivemuslim.com.

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New Muslims Zakah

Rights of the Poor and Needy in Islam

poor and needy

Muslims willingly offer the due amount in obedience to Allah’s commands. They pay it to the poor and the needy.

Allah (Exalted be He) praises those who spend for His cause in order to help the poor and the needy in the Islamic society. This is based on the instructions of the verse in the  Qur’an:

And in their wealth is a recognized right. For the (needy) who asks and the one who is deprived. (Al-Ma`arij 70:24,25)

As a matter of fact Islam regards the charity given to the poor and the needy as one of the most virtuous deeds. Moreover, Islam warns those who conceal and save up their wealth and do not spend for the cause of Allah. Allah says in the Qur’an:

It is not righteousness that you turn your faces towards East or West. But the righteousness is to believe in Allah and the Last Day, and the Angels, and the Book, and the Prophets, and to give of your wealth out of love for Him, to your kin and orphans and the needy and the wayfarer and those who ask, and for the ransom of slaves… (Al-Baqarah 2:177)

The ones who accumulate the wealth without giving the due right of the poor and needy as commanded by Allah, are promised by Allah that they will receive a severe punishment on the Day of Requital. Allah says in the Qur’an:

And those who hoard up gold and silver and do not spend in the Path of Allah then warn them of the painful torment. (At-Tawbah 9:34)

For this reason Zakah was prescribed as one of the basic tenets of Islam. Zakah is a set percentage (2.5%) of the accumulated wealth over a period of one year.

On Whom & To Whom?

Muslims willingly offer the due amount in obedience to Allah’s commands. They pay it to  the poor and the needy. Zakah is obligatory upon those who possess the appropriate amount on which Zakah is due. Allah states in the Qur’an:

And they were commanded not except to worship Allah, offering Him alone sincere devotion, being true (in faith); to establish regular Prayer; and to give calculated Charity; and that is the right Religion. ( Al-Bayyinah 98:5)

Zakah is prescribed with the following principles and conditions:

1- The person to pay Zakah must possess “nisab” (the appropriate amount as stipulated in the Islamic Shari`ah).

2- A period of one-year must pass while the owner maintains this amount in his possession. If less than a year passes, Zakah will not be required.

Islam defines the types of people who are entitled to receive Zakah. This is based on the verse in the Qur’an:

Verily alms are for the poor and the needy, and those employed to administer (the funds); for those whose hearts have been (recently) reconciled (to the truth); for those in bondage and in debt; in the cause of Allah; and for the wayfarer: (thus is it) ordained by Allah, and Allah is All- Knower and All-Wise. (At-Tawbah 9:60)

Why We Pay It!

Islam imposes Zakah in order to uproot poverty from the Islamic society, treat the resulting problems stemming from poverty such as: theft, murder, attacking people and taking their property unjustly. In addition, it revives the mutual social welfare and support among members of the Islamic society.

Furthermore, Zakah is used to fulfill the needs of the needy, the destitute, and to pay the debts of those who have debts and are not able to pay their debts due to a sound and legitimate reason.

Moreover, the payment of Zakah purifies one’s heart, soul and  wealth as well. An owner of a wealth will become less selfish and greedy when he/she pays this charity with a pure heart. The Almighty Allah states in the Qur’an:

And those saved from the covetousness of their own souls; they are the ones that achieve prosperity. (At-Taghabun 64:16)

Zakah purifies the hearts of those who are less affluent since they will have less hatred, jealousy and bitterness against the rich and wealthy class of people of the society because they see that they are paying their just dues and the rights to their poorer brethren.

The Almighty Allah warns those who refuse to pay their due Zakah against a severe punishment:

And let not those who covetously withhold of that which Allah has bestowed on them of His Bounty (wealth) think that it is good for them. Nay, it will be worse for them; soon shall the things which they covetously withheld be tied to their necks like a twisted collar on the Day of Resurrection. To Allah belongs the heritage of the heavens and the earth; and Allah is well-acquainted with all that you do. (Aal `Imran 3:180)

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Source: The article is an excerpt from the author’s Human Rights in Islam and Common Misconceptions.

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New Muslims Zakah

Sadaqah: Its Virtues and Benefits in Qur’an and Sunnah

By: Sayyid Saabiq

The legitimacy of giving sadaqah other than that of zakah is not restricted by a time limit or definite nisab. The amount designated for expenditure need not be a certain percentage (for example, a tithe, a one-quarter tithe, or a one-tenth tithe). It is an open-ended matter that is left to the beneficence, generosity, and condition of the one who gives. The protection of a revered man from destruction and harm is an obligation upon whoever can help him, but more than that, it is left unquantified.

People overlook most of the public rights which the Qur’an supports, for these rights seek to establish an honorable and just social life. People spend only a small amount on the needy and even less for beggars because they are considered the least deserving nowadays. This is due to the fact that beggars have made begging a profession, even though most of them are well-to-do.

Ibn Hazm says: “It is enjoined upon the rich of every country to support their poor, and the ruler has the authority to force them to do so. This is called for when the prescribed zakah or the holdings of other Muslims are not enough to meet the needs of the poor. In that case, their food and their clothing to protect them from the elements and the eyes of the passer-by would be provided by the rich.”

The proof for this is in the saying of Allah:

Give the kinsman his due, and the needy, and the wayfarer. (Al-Israa’ 17:26)

Allah also says:

Show kindness to parents, to near kin and orphans, to the needy, to relatives, to neighbors who are not related to you, to fellow travelers and wayfarers, and (to the slaves) whom your right hand possesses. (An-Nisaa’ 4:36)

Generosity urges support for the above-mentioned people and forbids harming them.

Referring to the guilty in the life to come, the Qur’an says that they would ask each other: “What brought you to this hellfire?” They will answer: “We were not of those who prayed, nor did we feed the needy”. (Al-Muddaththir 74:42-44)

Thus, Allah links feeding the needy with performing prayers.

The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: “He who does not have mercy upon people, Allah’s mercy will be kept from him.” (At-Tirmidhi)

Thus, anyone upon whom Allah bestowed His grace and who sees his Muslim brother hungry, in need of clothes, and miserable, and still does not help him, he will, indeed, deprive himself of Allah’s mercy.

`Uthman An-Nahdi reported that `Abdur-Rahman ibn Abi Bakr informed him that the Companions of As-Suffah were poor and that the Messenger of Allah, upon whom be peace, said: “He who has enough food for two, let him invite a third, and he who has food for four, let him invite a fifth or a sixth.”

It is related from Ibn `Umar that the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: “A Muslim is a brother of another, and he should neither do injustice to him nor betray him.”

Thus, anyone who lets a needy Muslim go without food or clothes while, in fact, he is able to feed and clothe him would have betrayed him.

It is related from Abu Sa`eed Al-Khudri that the Messenger of Allah said: “He whose holdings exceed his needs, let him support the one whose holdings do not, and he whose food exceeds his needs, let him share it with him who does not have food.” Abu Sa`eed Al-Khudri says: ”Then he mentioned so many kinds of property that we thought no one of us had the right to have anything surplus with us.” This is the consensus of the companions, as it was reported by Abu Sa`eed Al-Khudri.

Concerning this tradition, it is reported on the authority of Abu Musa Al-Ash`ari that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “Feed the hungry, visit the sick, and ransom the prisoner.”

There are many verses in the Qur’an and numerous sound hadiths on this subject. `Umar says: “If I were to live again the past which I have already lived, I would take the surplus from the rich and distribute it among the poor immigrants (muhajirun).” This is considered to be the most authentic report.

`Ali said: “Allah (the Exalted be He) has placed a due upon the properties of the rich to meet the needs of the poor. Thus, if the poor go hungry or naked or struggle because of the neglect of the rich, then Allah will hold them (the rich) accountable on the Day of Judgment and will punish them.”

Ibn `Umar is reported to have said: “There is a due on your property other than zakah.” It is related from `A’ishah (the mother of the believers), Al-Hasan ibn `Ali, Ibn `Umar that all of them replied to those who had asked them: “If you are asked for help in cases of blood money, heavy debt, or desperate poverty, then it is a must for you to give them from your holdings.”

It was accurately reported by Abu `Ubaydah ibn Al-Jarrah and 300 Companions that (once) when their provisions had run very low, Abu `Ubaydah ordered them to collect what was left and place it into two bags and then allot it to each one equally. Then he said: “It is not permissible for a hard-pressed Muslim to eat the meat of a dead animal or a pig when he can find surplus food from either a Muslim or a dhimmi (non-Muslims living under the protection of the Islamic State). It is an obligation of the one who has food to feed the hungry.”

Allah says:

And if one party of them does wrong to the other, fight those who do wrong until they return to the ordinance of Allah. (Al-Hujurat 49:9)

Thus, one who withholds a right is an oppressor of his brother. The latter is the possessor of that right.

On this basis, Abu Bakr As-Siddiq waged war against those who refused to pay their zakah.

From the preceding, one can see the degree of compassion and commiseration that Islam has for the deprived. Islam, in fact, excels over all other faiths and systems. They are like weak, sputtering candles when placed next to the bright and steady light of the sun of Islam.

Voluntary Sadaqah

Islam calls upon the individual to spend freely in ways that please the heart of the donor, and evoke generosity, goodness, reverence, and obedience to Allah.

Voluntary Sadaqah in the Qur’an

Allah says:

The parable of those who spend their wealth in the way of Allah is that of a grain of corn: it grows seven ears, and each ear has a hundred grains. Allah gives manifold increase to whom He pleases; Allah cares for all and knows all things. (Al-Baqarah 2:261)

By no means shall you attain righteousness unless you give freely of that which you love, and whatever you give, Allah knows it well. (Aal `Imran 92)

And spend from what We have made you heir. For those of you who believe and spend, for them is a great reward. (Al-Hadid 57:7)

Voluntary Sadaqah in the Hadith

The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: “Sadaqah appeases the anger of the Lord and wards off the agony of death.” (At-Tirmidhi)

It is similarly related that the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: “The sadaqah of the Muslim increases during his lifetime. It also softens the agony of death, and through it, Allah takes away arrogance and vanity.”

The Messenger of Allah said: “’There is not a day in which the obedient servants rise in the morning or two angels descend, and one of them says: ‘O Allah! Compensate the one who spends freely.’ The other angel says: ‘O Allah! Let an annihilation come upon the one who is niggardly.’” (Muslim)

The Messenger of Allah said:

“Acts of kindness protect one from ruin wrought by evil. Sadaqah given secretly appeases the anger of the Lord, and a gift to strengthen the ties of relationship increases one’s life span. All good deeds are sadaqah, and those who do acts of kindness in this world are also the same people in the other world. Those who do misdeeds in this world are the same people in the other world. The first of those who shall enter Paradise are the people who do acts of kindness.” (At-Tabarani)

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The article is an excerpt from the author’s translated book “Fiqh Us Sunnah”.

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