Categories
Articles of Faith New Muslims

Who Is the Muslim and How to Be One?

muslim prayer

Only someone who is a slave of none but God and a follower of none but His Messengers can be truly called a Muslim.

BY Abul A`la Mawdudi

According to the Qur’an, men go astray in three ways. The first is to ignore the guidance of God and become slaves of desire. The second is to give precedence to family, culture, society, customs and the ways of forefathers over the law of God. The third is to ignore the way enunciated by God and His Messenger (peace be upon him) and follow the ways either of so-called important people or of other civilizations and cultures.

A True Muslim

A true Muslim should be free from these three ailments. Only someone who is a slave of

none but God and a follower of none but His Messengers can be truly called a Muslim.

A Muslim sincerely believes that the teaching of God and His Messenger is absolute truth, that whatever runs counter to it is false, and that it contains all that is good for man in this world and in the Hereafter. A Muslim who has complete faith in these truths will, at every step in his life, look only to God and the Messenger to guide him and submit to whatever they require.

Such a person will never feel troubled in his heart about obeying God’s commandments, or be concerned if members of his family or his society upbraid him, or if the entire world opposes him. In each case his response will be unequivocal: I am God’s slave, not yours; I have faith in His Messenger, not in you.

What is Hypocrisy?

Serving the Self

On the other hand, a person may say, ‘This may be the directive of God and the Messenger, but it is difficult for me to accept it because it seems to be harmful. So I shall act according to my own opinion as against the guidance of God and the Messenger.’

Obviously, no faith can be alive in the heart of such a person. He is not a true believer (mu’min) but a hypocrite (munafiq). While he verbally claims to be a servant of God and a follower of the Messenger, in reality he is a slave of his own self and a follower of his own opinions.

Adherence to Society and Culture

Similarly, a person may say that whatever the injunctions of God and the Messenger may be, a certain practice cannot be given up because it has been followed since the times of his forefathers. He, too, must then be reckoned among the hypocrites, however prominent the mark on his forehead traced by prostration in endless prayers and however pious his face.

The spirit of Islam has not entered his heart. Islam does not consist merely in bowing (ruku`, prostration (sujud) , Fasting (sawm) and Pilgrimage (Hajj); nor is it found in the face and dress of a man.

Islam means submission to God and the Messenger. Anyone who refuses to obey them in the conduct of his life-affairs has a heart devoid of the real Islam – ‘faith has not yet entered their hearts’. His Prayers, his Fasting and his pious appearance are nothing but deception.

Imitating Other People

Again, someone may, in defiance of the Book of God and the Messenger’s directions, urge thus: Such and such ideas and practices should be adopted because they are prevalent in the West; this particular behavior must be accepted because other nations are making progress because of it; this point should be conceded because an important person is advocating it. Such a person is in grave danger of losing his faith. This attitude is irreconcilable to iman (faith).

If you are Muslims and want to remain Muslims, then cast overboard every suggestion which is contrary to the injunctions of God and His Messenger. If you cannot, it ill behoves you to claim to be following Islam. To assert that you believe in God and the Messenger but to ignore their injunctions in the conduct of your lives in favor of other people’s thoughts and practices is neither iman nor Islam. It is sheer hypocrisy.

Allah leaves no doubt about the ridiculous nature of such conduct:

Indeed We have sent down revelations clearly showing the truth, but God guides whomsoever He will to a straight path. They say, ‘We believe in God and the Messenger, and we obey’. Then, after that, a party of them turn away; they are not (true) believers. And when they are called unto God and His Messenger that he may decide between them, behold, a party of them turn away; but if they are in the right, they will come unto him submitting willingly. What! Is there in their hearts sickness? Or are they in doubt? Or, do they fear that God and His Messenger may be unjust towards them?

Nay, it is they who are doing wrong. All that the believers say, whenever they are called unto God and His Messenger that he may judge between them, is that they say, ‘We hear, and we obey.’ It is they who are the successful.

Whoso obeys God and His Messenger, and fears God, and has awe of Him, it is they who shall triumph. (An-Nur 24:46-52)

Reflect on the definition of iman set out here. What is iman? It consists in submitting yourselves, willingly and totally, to the Book of God and the guidance given by His Messenger.

Whatever guidance and commandments are received from these sources you must implicitly obey and no arguments against them should be listened to, whether they come from your own minds, or from members of your families, or from outsiders. You can only be a Muslim if you develop this attitude. If you do not, you are no more than a hypocrite.

Compare, now, yourselves with those who had real and true iman in their hearts and see how they obeyed Allah and the Messenger.

_________________________

The article is an excerpt from Abul A`la Al-Mawdudi’s book “Let Us Be Muslims”.

 

Soucre Link
Categories
New Muslims Reflections

Emmanuel Adebayor : I Am A Muslim and That’s Why

Emmanuel Adebayor

Now I believe am a true follower of Jesus.

Emmanuel Adebayor, the Togolese international football star, is now a Muslim. His conversion went viral in the early days of the Ramadan this year after a video was posted online showing the Tottenham Hotspurs striker, 30, clothed in a white robe, while taking his Shahadah (the Islamic Declaration of Faith).

The story was doubted particularly as the Togo football star was known as a practicing Christian with him posting pictures of himself with a priest to Facebook with captions praising God.

It was until the former Arsenal, Man City and Real Madrid forward has all confirmed his recent conversion to Islam in a new post wishing fellow Muslims a happy `Eid along with his manner of dressing.

“SEA, to all my Muslim families: may the blessings of Allah fill your life with happiness and open all the doors of success now and always. Eid Mubarak! ?À toutes mes familles Musulmanes: que les bénédictions d’Allah remplissent votre vie de joie et vous ouvre les portes du succès, maintenant et à jamais. Eid Mubarak! #GodFirst #EverythingSecond #belief #OneGod #HappyEid #EidMubarak #GoodLife #GodIsGood #GoodOverEvil #LifesGood”

The soccer star shared a message on Instagram along with a photo of himself wearing the popular Arabian white thawb and an ankle-length white shirt. He covered his head with a shemagh, a heavy red and white scarf-like head cover.

In the past few months Sheyi Emmanuel Adebayor has been releasing online family issues and how he has been dealing with them as well as vice versa.

As days, weeks, months stretched on, he was reported to have dumped his Christian faith and be a Muslim.

That’s Why I Became Muslim

In his expected usual self, he released the reasons why he converted to Islam.

Check out his reasons

I got 13 valid reasons why and how Muslims are like Jesus (peace be upon him) and true followers of Jesus than most Christians believe:

1- Jesus (peace be upon him) taught that there is only One God and Only God should be worshipped as taught in Deut 6:4, Mark 12:29. Muslims also believe this as taught in the Qur’an, verse 4:171:

O People of the Scripture! Do not exaggerate in your religion nor utter aught concerning Allah save the truth. The Messiah, Jesus son of Mary, was only a messenger of Allah, and His word which He conveyed unto Mary, and a spirit from Him. So believe in Allah and His messengers, and say not “Three” – Cease! (it is) better for you! – Allah is only One Allah. (An-Nisaa’ 4:171)

2- Jesus didn’t eat pork as taught in Leviticus 11:7 , and neither do Muslims as taught in the Qur’an:

Say: I find not in that which is revealed unto me aught prohibited to an eater that he eat thereof, except it be carrion, or blood poured forth, or swine flesh. (Al-An`am 6:145)

3- Jesus greeted with the words “as-salamu `alaykum” (Peace be upon you) in John 20:21. Muslims also greet each other this way.

4- Jesus always said “God Willing” (in sha’ Allah), Muslims say this too before doing anything as taught in the Qur’an:

And say not of anything, “I shall do it tomorrow,” without adding, “if God wills.” (Al-Kahf 18:23-24)

5- Jesus washed his face, hands, and feet before praying. The Muslims do the same.

6- Jesus and other prophets of the Bible prayed with their head to the ground (see Matthew 26:39). Muslims do too as taught in the Qur’an:

O Mary! Be obedient to your Lord, prostrate ourself and bow with those who bow (in worship). (Aal `Imran 3:43)

7- Jesus had a beard and wore a thawb. It is Sunnah for Muslim men to do the same.

8- Jesus followed the law and believed in all the prophets, (see Matthew 5:17). Muslims do too as taught in the Qur’an in two verses:

Say (O Muhammad): “We believe in Allah, and in what has been revealed to us and what was revealed to Abraham, Isma’il, Isaac, Jacob, and the Tribes, and in (the Books) given to Moses, Jesus, and the prophets, from their Lord: We make no distinction between one and another among them, and to Allah do we bow our will (in Islam).” (Aal `Imran 3:84)

The Messenger believes in that which hath been revealed to him from his Lord and (so do) believers. Each one believeth in Allah and His angels and His scriptures and His messengers – We make no distinction between any of His messengers. (Al-Baqarah 2:285)

9- Jesus’ mother, Maryam (Mary) (May Allah be pleases with her) dressed modestly by fully covering her body and wearing a headscarf (hijab) as found in 1 Timothy 2:9, Genesis 24:64-65, and Corinthians 11:6. Muslim women modestly dress the same as taught:

O Prophet! Tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to draw their cloaks close round them (when they go abroad). That will be better, so that they may be recognized and not annoyed. Allah is ever Forgiving, Merciful. (Al-Ahzab 33:59)

10- Jesus and other prophets of the Bible fasted up to 40 days (see Exodus 34:28, Daniel 10:2-6. 1Kings 19:8, and Matthew 4:1-Muslims do so also during the month of Ramadan. Muslims are required to fast the full obligatory 30 days (see Qur’an 2:183), and others take it a step further by fasting an additional 6 days to increase their rewards.

11- Jesus taught to say “Peace to this house” when entering it (see Luke 10:5), and to also greet the people in the house with “peace be unto you”.

Muslims do exactly what Jesus did and taught. When we enter our homes and the homes of others we say “bismillah” (in the name of Allah) and also greet with “as-salamu `alaykum” (peace be upon you) as taught in the Qur’an:

But if you enter houses, salute each other – a greeting of blessing and purity as from Allah. (An-Nur 24:61)

12- Jesus was circumcised. Circumcision is 1 of the 5 fitrah (pure nature) in Islam, so Muslim men are required to be circumcised. According to the Bible in Luke 2:21, Jesus was eight days old when he was circumcised. In the Torah, Allah/God stated to the Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him) that it is an “Everlasting covenant” (see Genesis 17:13).

In the Qur’an verse 16:123 Muslims are required to follow the religion of Abraham. The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said, “The Prophet Abraham circumcised himself when he was eighty years old.” (Al-Bukhari, Muslim, and Ahmad).

13- Jesus (peace be upon him) spoke Aramaic and called God ”Elah”, which is pronounced the same as “Allah”. Aramaic is an ancient, Biblical language. It is one of the Semitic languages that also include Hebrew, Arabic, Ethiopic and the ancient Assyrian and Babylonian language of Akkadian.

The Aramaic ”Elah” and the Arabic “Allah” are the same.

The Aramaic “Elah” is derived from the Arabic “Allah”, and it means “GOD”. “Allah” in Arabic also means ”God”, the Supreme GOD Almighty. You can easily see the similarity in their pronunciation so this concludes that the God of Jesus is also the God of the Muslims, of all mankind, and all that exist.

Now tell me who is the real follower of Jesus (peace be upon him)? Obviously Muslims.

Now I believe am a true follower of Jesus.

_________________________

Source: The Herald and other websites.

 

Soucre Link
Categories
Ethics & Values New Muslims

Fulfillment of Promise: The Muslim’s Conduct

An essential Part of a Muslim’s Conduct

Fulfillment of Promise: The Muslim’s Conduct

No promise and covenant is proper and correct except in rightful matters.

When a Muslim undertakes a thing, he should respect the undertaking. When he enters into any contract he should honor it till the last.

This is the demand of the faith that when a man talks of any enterprise, he should have the intention of taking it to completion, like the water which does not rest till it flows down to the lower level. He should be known among the people as a man of reliable promises, and there should be no fear of any breach of promises or of any dubious dealings from him.

Fulfillment of the promise is necessary. Similarly when an oath is taken, it should be redeemed. But this fulfillment of promise or the redeeming of the oath and pledges is necessary when the dealing is legitimate and concerns truth, otherwise honoring the promise in connection with something sinful and disobedience to Allah has no value, and there is no importance of oath in sin.

Allah’s Messenger has said:

“If someone has taken an oath, but saw an aspect of goodness in another thing, he may break his oath and pay compensation (atonement), and should perform the act which is better and has goodness.” (Muslim)

It is not proper for a man to insist on redeeming the oath. On such occasions it is better to break the oath. In a hadith it is stated:

“It is sinful for a man among you to go to his wife with his oath (unredeemed) compared to his paying the compensation (atoning) which He has fixed for breaking the oath.” (Al-Bukhari)

Covenant with Allah

For this reasons no promise and covenant is proper and correct except in rightful matters. When a man has promised to do a certain good thing, then he should try his best to fulfill it, as long as it appears good to him. He should very well know that he should stick to manly talk, faith and belief. There is no room in this for breach of promises or doubts and hesitation.

Anas ibn Malik says that his uncle Anas ibn Nadar could not take part in the Battle of Badr, and he said to the Prophet: “O Messenger of Allah! In the first battle that you fought with the polytheists I could not take part. If Allah kept me with the Prophet then they will definitely see my achievements in the second battle against the polytheists.”

When in the Battle of Uhud, there was fierce fighting and the Muslims were retreating. He prayed to Allah: “O Allah! I ask your pardon for the mistake that they have committed, and I declare myself innocent of the transgression of the polytheists”.

Saying this he rushed into the battle. In the way he met Sa`d ibn Mu`adh whom he said: “O Sa`d ibn Mu`adh! By the God of Nadar, Proceed towards Paradise. I smell its fragrance , in the valley of Uhad.”

Sa`d said: “O Messenger of Allah! The love for martyrdom, which he showed, cannot be expressed. Then he advanced.”

Anas says that we found more than eighty wounds on his body, which were caused by swords, the points of lances and the shower of arrows. The polytheists had disfigured his body and it was difficult to identify him. With great difficulty his sister identified him with the help of a mole on his fingers.

Anas says that he thinks that the following verses were revealed about him or about persons like him:

Among the believers are men who have been true to their covenant with Allah; of them some have completed their vow to (the extreme), and some (still) wait; but they have never changed (their determination) in the least. (Al-Ahzab 33:23)

The Requirements

Fulfillment of promises depends on two essential factors: memory and determination. With these two things, fulfilling one’s promises would be easy. Allah had taken a promise from Adam that he would not go near the forbidden tree, but Adam forgot the promise within a few days. He became a prey to weakness and broke his promise:

We had already beforehand taken the covenant of Adam, but he forgot,. and We found on his part no firm resolve. (Ta-Ha 22:115)

It shows that deficiency in memory and weakness of determination are two obstructions, which come in the way of performance of duty. And this is a strange thing that man, being overwhelmed by the hardships of the times, various difficulties and different pressing problems forgets the open and clear realities. To him the clear figures appear blurred, and the realities which are as striking as the light of the sun disappear from his sight.

There the necessity of a reminder becomes very pressing, to overcome the negligence and 3

forgetfulness, and to keep this important thing before men’s eyes. There are a number of verses of the Qur’an which were revealed for safeguarding the memory:

Follow the revelation given to you from your Lord, and follow not, as friends or protectors, other than Him. Little it is you remember of admonition. (Al-A`araf 7:3)

This is the way of your Lord, leading straight; We have detailed the signs for those who receive admonition. (Al-An`am 6:126)

And the raiment of righteousness-that is the best. Such are among the signs of Allah, that they may receive admonition. (Al-A`raf 7:26)

Thus shall We raise up the dead; so that you may remember… ( Al-A`raf 7:57)

Alive and wakeful memory and remembrance is essential for fulfilling promises. A man who forgets his promises and covenants, how can he fulfill them? That is why the following verse has been ended on a note of admonition after giving command of fulfilling them:

And fulfill the Covenant of Allah; thus does He command you, that you may remember. (Al-An`am 6:152)

Determination

If a man has a strong memory in respect of fulfilling his promise, it is also necessary that he should have a determination to do so, a determination which should not have any laxity or slackness in this matter a determination which should be able to overcome all the rebellious desires, and which should lighten the coming burden of difficulties.

It should be a determination which should be able to cross all the difficult valleys and blocks and should be able to set an example of selfless sacrifice for others.

The measures for weighing and appraising people are different with different people. The price one has to pay for remaining faithful sometimes is very high.

At times one requires to sacrifice all the wealth, property and the most desired thing in this respect.

The Reward

But these difficulties, sacrifices and trials of determination prove in the end to be the steps for achieving greatness and honor, as the poet says: “Why he, who considers his life and heart dear, should go to (seek) the beloved in her street.”

The Qur’an has severely criticized those who seek to achieve heights of success and glory in the shadow of comfortable living:

Do you think that you will enter paradise without such trials as came to those who passed away before you? They experienced suffering and adversity and were so shaken in spirit that even the prophet and the faithful who were with him cried: ‘When will Allah’s help come ?’ Ah ! Verily, Allah’s help is near. (Al-Baqarah 2:214)

When a man develops in himself the combined forces of a conscious and wakeful mind and a heart full of determination, then he can be considered to have been qualified to enter the group of the faithful people.

_________________________

The article is an excerpt from the book “Muslim Character”, a translation of Muhammad Al-Ghazali’s “Khuluq Al-Muslim”.

Soucre Link
Categories
Ethics & Values New Muslims

Trustworthiness: The Characteristic of a True Believer

The Broader Sense of Trust

straight way-nature

Trust is the sense of responsibility, the sense of having to appear before Allah and to account for one’s actions

Islam expects of its followers that they will be masters of live hearts and wakeful conscience, which would ensure the protection of the rights of God and humanity and which would also protect their action: from the commitment of excesses. Therefore it is necessary that every Muslim should be “ameen” (trustworthy).

In the eyes of the Shari`ah, trust has a very broad sense. This word contains an ocean of meaning, but underneath it all is the sense of responsibility, the sense of having to appear before Allah and to account for one’s actions, the details of which are given in the hadith:

“Every one of you is a guardian and everyone will be asked about his subjects. Imam is a guardian. He will be asked about his subjects. A man is the guardian of the persons in his household. He is answerable about them. A woman is the guardian of her husband’s house. She will be asked about her responsibility. The servant is the guardian of the articles of his master. He is answerable about this responsibility of his.“ (Al-Bukhari)

The narrator of the hadith, Ibn `Umar, says that he heard these things from the Prophet (peace be upon him) and he thinks that the Prophet also said: “A man is a guardian of the stock of his father and is answerable about that.”

Faith-based

The people take trust in a very limited, sense and consider it to mean the protection of others’ deposits, although in Allah’s religion this has a very broad and unlimited sense.

This is a duty for safeguarding which a Muslim advises another Muslim and in this connection seeks the help of Allah.

When a Muslim prepares to go on a journeys his brother prays for him in this way: “I pray to Allah for your religion, your trust and for the happy ending of your work.” (At-Tirmidhi)

Anas narrates that whenever Allah’s Messenger addressed a sermon to us, he invariably repeated this sentence:

“The man has no faith who cannot keep trust and the man who does not respect his promises has no religion.” (Ahmad)

Since the zenith of achievement and the highest limit of success is to be protected against the hardships of this world and the bad consequences in the Hereafter, the Prophet prays for safety from both the conditions. He has said:

“O Allah! I seek your shelter from the pangs of hunger, because it is a very bad companion, and I seek your shelter from dishonesty because it is the worst friend.” (Abu Dawud)

God’s Guardians

Hunger is the name of deprivation in the world and dishonesty is the name of destruction of religion, therefore the Prophet had prayed for being spared from both. Before attaining prophethood he was known among the people as AL-Ameen (The Trustworthy).

Similarly the trustworthiness of Musa (Moses) was observed when he fetched water for the flock of the two daughters of the good old man, had helped them, had respected their womanhood, and had treated them in a decent and gentlemanly way:

So he watered (their flocks) for them; then he turned back to the shade, and said: “O my Lord I truly am I in (desperate) need of any good that you do send me !

Afterwards one of the (damsels) came (back) to him, walking bashfully. She said: “My father invites you that he may reward you for having watered (our flocks) for us.” So when he came to him and narrated the story, he said: “Do not fear; (well) have you escaped from unjust people.

Said one of the (damsels) :“O my (dear) father I engage him on wages; truly the best of men for you to employ is the (man) who is strong and trusty. (Al-Qasas 28:24-26}

This event took place when Moses had not been made Prophet, and was not sent to Pharaohs.

And this is not at all surprising because Allah chose only those individuals for being appointed as His Messengers who were the most decent, most honest and righteous, among the people.

The self which continues to be attached to the high moral character even after undergoing the extremes of the hardship of poverty and helplessness must be belonging to a very powerful and trustworthy man; and the protection of the rights of God and His slaves demands such character only as does not change in good or bad conditions, and this is the spirit of trustworthiness.

Appointment to High Offices and Posts

There is also another sense of trust, and that is: everything should be placed at its proper and deserving place. An office or a post should be offered only to the deserving person; and responsibility should be given only to that person who is able to shoulder it and who has the capability to do justice to the trust placed in him.

Governorship, responsibilities of the party, nation or country, which are granted placing confidence in the persons concerned, are trusts, about which they are answerable. A number of proofs can be advanced in support of this statement.

Abu Dhar (May Allah be pleased with him) reports that he asked the Prophet whether he would not make him a governor somewhere. Hearing this the Prophet tapped his shoulder and said:

“O Abu Dhar ! you are weak, and this responsibility is a trust. On the Day of Judgment it will be a cause of loss of honor and ignominy. However, those people will be spared who will have accepted it with all its responsibilities and would have fulfilled whatever responsibilities they had in this connection.” (Muslim)

It is a fact that mere excellence of education or experience does not make a person most suitable for some office. It is also possible that a man may have good moral character and a righteous person, but he may not have the capabilities to fulfill the responsibilities of a certain office.

Yusuf (Joseph) was a Prophet. He was the living example of righteousness and virtuousness, but he had not offered his services to shoulder the responsibilities of the country on the basis of his righteousness and prophet-hood.

He had taken the reins of office in his hand on account of his learning and memory.

(Yusuf) Said.. ‘Entrust to me the treasures of the country. Verily, I am protector and learned’. (Yusuf :55)

_________________________

The article is an excerpt from the book “Muslim Character”, a translation of Muhammad Al-Ghazali’s “Khuluq Al-Muslim”.

Soucre Link
Categories
Conversion Stories New Muslims

Finding God: Why More and More Scots are Turning to Islam

A growing number of Scots are converting to Islam – with the majority young women.

Scots muslims

Glasgow Central Mosque alone is now seeing more than 200 Scots a year ‘revert’.

Glasgow Central Mosque alone is now seeing more than 200 Scots a year ‘revert’. Due to the rising number of Scots finding Islam, mosques across the country are also setting up support groups for new ‘reverts’. Many are fearful of abuse and intimidation.

Reversion is the preferred term within Islam for those who ‘convert’ – as Muslims believe everyone is born believing in Allah.

From Christianity

The Sunday Herald spoke to Hannah, a 25-year-old administrator from Glasgow who recently “reverted”. Hannah asked for her surname to be kept confidential. Though brought up without any particular faith, Hannah is one of a growing number of Scots who are turning to Islam despite what many see as a “demonization” of the religion.

“I’d done a degree in comparative religion and had to analyze all the religious texts,” said Hannah. “I went away from that thinking that maybe I should be a Christian.

“But a few months later, while meditating, I found myself pulled in the direction of Islam. After that I started reading again, but this time in a more emotional way. I found, I preferred the simplicity of Islam.”

After mulling it over for six months, she decided to revert. In July this year, she visited Glasgow Central Mosque to take the Shahadah (the Declaration of Faith) in front of two witnesses, in which Allah is recognized as the only God.

Her conversion was shared online by the Glasgow Central Mosque along with others including 20-year-old Jade from the Shetland Isles, and Katie, also 20 and an administration worker from Glasgow, who made her Shahadah last month.

Increasing Influx

Glasgow Central Mosque says numbers of “reverts” have been gradually rising and they are now dealing with up to four conversions a week. Along with the Edinburgh Central Mosque, it has now started support groups for new Muslims.

The total number of converts is not known, but according to a report by Faith Matters, 5,200 people now join the UK-wide Muslim population of three million every year. Scotland’s community is significantly smaller at 90,000 people, over one-third of whom live in Glasgow.

Rizy Mohammad, a co-ordinator at the Glasgow Central Mosque, said: “We are seeing an influx, particularly in the number of women expressing an interest in Islam. I don’t think there is one reason for it but it’s interesting that after 9/11, where Muslims were blamed for the bombing of the twin towers, a lot of people started doing their own research. Many found out more about Islam that led them to different conclusions.

“There is also the spiritual dimension. They’ve been part of the material world, done the shopping thing and now they are looking for a deeper connection.”

Scots & Islamophobia

But for many reverts, it is not an easy transition. High-profile conversions of white Muslims such as Richard Dart, who is serving a six-year jail sentence for plotting an attack on soldiers in Royal Wootton Bassett, mean alarm bells often sound for family members.

“Because of the extent of Islamophobia in the media, my mum, who is a Pagan, thought that I was going to join IS,” said Hannah.

“People see the violent, loud things. They don’t see the quiet Muslims who aren’t doing anything bad. My brother told her not to be so ridiculous and after about a week she came round. Now she makes sure that I don’t drink when I come to her house and even cooks halal for me.”

Hannah has also found some of the more conservative aspects of the religion, which still segregates men and women at places of worship, difficult to deal with. She admits she has taken off her hijab in parts of the city where she perceived the reaction to Muslim men and women wearing full traditional dress to be less than supportive. Since converting she has not been swimming due to concerns about covering up, and finds it hard cycling while wearing a hijab.

A 2013 Cambridge University study about women’s experience of conversion claimed it was “not for the faint-hearted”.

“I think in Islam men and women are equal but different,” said Hannah. “But I also think there are some cultural issues with equality.”

Inner Peace… Inner Power

Jay (not his real name), who converted less than three months ago after a near-death experience with drugs, said that while some friends had asked if he was going to travel to Syria and fight for IS, most people have been positive about his decision. Before his conversion, he said, he worked and partied too hard, and lived for the weekend.

“One of my colleagues in particular was keen to know why I converted,” said Jay. “He wanted to know how I could give up the clubs, drink and girlfriends, and now spend my time praying.

“I told him that now I had inner peace. I could now go to sleep at night. A few weeks later he also became Muslim.”

The Convert’s Need for Support

However, other converts have been left disillusioned. Dawud Duncan, originally from Oban, who became Muslim nine years ago, believes the lack of support from fellow “heritage Muslims” – people born into Islam -has led some reverts to leave their newfound faith.

“When a person takes the Shahadah they are treated like a superstar and everyone wants to know their story,” he said.

“However, within a week they can be left to their own devices. This can make the individual feel very isolated as they are often caught between two communities.”

Duncan, who now lives in Glasgow, currently hosts an online radio program for converts and also aims to set up a support and advocacy group. He hopes that issues raised by the group can be taken up by the leadership of the mosque to help avoid future problems.

“New Muslims have so much to offer the Muslim community and Scotland,” said Duncan. “This would include a fresh perspective and a deeper understanding of the cultural issues our society faces. Converts find it easier to explain Islam to a Scottish audience.”

His experience chimes with that of Saleem Mcgroarty, 43, from Edinburgh, a member of the Edinburgh Muslim Community Association who was raised a Catholic and converted to Islam at 26.

He no longer attends his local mosque due to concerns about its links to Saudi Arabia, a country with a very conservative approach to Islam, and has found it hard to integrate.

Mcgroarty said: “I think there should be some emotional and community support, a buddy network; the things you really need when you are moving into another world.”

_________________________

Source: The Herald

Soucre Link
Categories
New Muslims Worldview

Islam: A Religion of Quality

nature_islam

Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that unkempt, unclean and loutish individuals who spout distorted religious speculations as being wholly representative of Islam.

The Islamic world is wide-spread not only in its geography, but in its various traditions. However, when we look at the world of Islam today, a general coarsening has taken place.

At one time, Muslims were regarded as people of good character; in the Middle Ages, Saladin was regarded by the Crusaders, including Richard the Lionhearted, as a wise and noble figure worthy of respect. Islam led the world in the sciences, the arts and literature.

Now when we gaze upon the Islamic world, we see a degraded culture where shabby-looking men are held up as saints, where beautiful women are commanded by bigots to conceal their beauty, and where unkempt women are held up as paragons of virtue by the very nature of their appearance, as though having bad skin and uncombed hair somehow makes you pious.

It goes without saying that many, especially in the West, look at bedraggled men with long and disheveled beards, wearing rags and semi-literate, as examples of Islam. This occurs because the media has made them so, and these particular men love nothing more than to claim to speak for the whole of the Islamic world.

But it is not only in the West that this has happened; in the Islamic world, far too many Muslims see these same men and think to themselves, “Why, look! He wears filthy rags, and has a long and ungroomed beard. Surely this is a holy man!” Or they see a woman in stylish clothes, wearing makeup or having her hair uncovered, and the immediate reaction of far too many is, “Why, this woman is a prostitute, a Jezebel!”

This kind of foolish thinking is unfortunately commonplace in the Islamic world.

So how has it come to this? How is it that music, art and beauty is condemned, when music, art and beauty are gifts from God? Why are these gifts, which uplift and elevate the mind and soul, looked upon as curses from the devil himself?

Perhaps it is because we have allowed petty and small-minded provincials with peculiar ideas to rule the discussion for too long. We have allowed these people to enjoy a cultural dictatorship, a “tyranny of moral busybodies,” as the Christian writer C.S. Lewis so eloquently said.

We have allowed them to become cultural arbiters. And the results? A world without joy or beauty. A world where those men and women who wish to share the talents given to them by God are told their gifts are sins. What madness is this? Truly, a world in which there is no appreciation of beauty and aesthetics is little more than a manifestation of Hell itself.

There is nothing from the Qur’an that prohibits music or the arts. It is mistaken to say, “The Qur’an prohibits music!” This is bid`ah, or heresy, and those who introduce such things are committing a sin. As it says in the Qur’an:

Say, “Do you see that which God has provided for you – you make some of it unlawful (haram) and some of it lawful?” Say, “Did God allow you to do this, or do you tell lies about God?” (Yunus 10:59)

Our Prophet (peace be upon him) was a man of fine appearance and attribute, and he had an aesthetic appreciation for beauty. He used to grow roses around his house, and in a desert environment growing almost anything is a difficult task.

At that time there existed a fragrant oil and our Prophet used to use olive oil as well as that oil mixed with a beautiful smelling rose extract; he used to wear this in his hair as a brilliantine, and it made him appear more youthful. It is said his clothes, his frock and shirt were white and always kept clean and in good repair. His teeth (owing to the use of a miswak, a natural toothbrush) were white and clean.

All of these descriptions of his appearance come from the hadiths. All these descriptions are notably different from what we so often see, and all are notably different from what we see in Muslim extremists as well.

So to my fellow Muslims, please do not allow yourselves to fall into the trap of thinking that by looking shabby and scowling, that this makes you a more devout Muslim. Do not fall prey to the notion that forbidding music or art or beauty is somehow the commandment of God.

Do not think for one moment that by treating your wife as an object of scorn or contempt, or as your occasional beast of burden when you go to the shops, that you are living the truth of Islam. You are not. You are behaving in an ugly and boorish manner, and this behavior is fodder for those who seek to portray Muslims as savages.

And above all, do not fall into that trap of utopian nonsense which says that if the Muslims were simply to go back to the life of the seventh century A.D., then all would be well in the world, and we would all live in perfect contentment forevermore. This rejection of the modern world is not only profoundly silly and highly reactionary, it is dangerous.

And for the Western reader, I ask you not to fall into the trap of thinking that unkempt, unclean and loutish individuals who spout distorted religious speculations mixed with their own superstitions and cultural peculiarities as being wholly representative of Islam. They are not; overall, they are a minority. They get the attention they do simply because they manage to talk over everyone else.

And do not fall into the trap of the anti-Muslim bigots; while they like to claim they are only opposed to “extremists” and “radicals”, they portray this vocal and extremist minority as representative of the entirety of Islam, when in fact the opposite is true. Extremists speak only for themselves; they are a majority only in their fevered delusions.

_________________________

Source: huffingtonpost.com 

Soucre Link
Categories
Ethics & Values New Muslims

The Muslim: The True, The Best & The Ideal

`Abdullah ibn `Umar (may Allah be pleased with them) narrated that the Prophet (peace be upon him), said, “The Muslim is he from whose tongue and hands Muslims are safe. And the Muhajir (immigrant) is he who abandons all what Allah has forbidden.” (Al-Bukhari)

muslim

The best Muslim is defined as he who offers food to the needy and greet every one with peace.

The hadith implies that the perfect Muslim is he who refrains from abusing people physically, verbally, and mentally. In return, people will trust him and feel secure and comfortable when dealing with him.

The Basic Islam

The basic Muslim as mentioned in other traditions is he who fulfills the five pillars of Islam: testifying that there is no God but Allah and Mohammad is His messenger, offering prayers in time, gave obligatory charity (zakah), fasting the month of Ramadan, and performing pilgrimage to Mecca if one has the means to afford it.

The True Islam

The above hadith defines the Muslim as he from whose tongue and hands Muslims are safe. Scholar of Islam say that hadith refers to the perfect or true Muslim.

The true Muslim is he who, in addition to believing and performing all the pillars of Islam, refrains from harming anybody either by words or actions.

It stresses that the real Muslim avoids causing any kind of harm to people. In other words, one cannot be a true Muslim unless his religious practices of Islam are reflected in his dealings with people in real life.

The true Muslim does not only meet the basic requirements but also is always striving to be a peaceful person who respects the rights of people and refrains from causing any sort of harm, damage, or injury to them either by words or actions.

But he who practices the pillars of Islam and various acts of worship, but at the same time, he treats people with bad manners and pays no respect to their rights, is unable to understand the reality of Islam. Such a person has indeed failed to realize the significance of the acts of worship and the wisdom and spirit behind them.

The Best Islam

Moreover, according to other traditions, the best Muslim is defined as he who offers food to the needy and greet every one with peace.

`Abdullah ibn `Umar said that a person asked Allah’s Messenger, “Which Islam is the best?” He replied, “To offer food and greet with peace those whom you know and those whom you don’t know.” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim.)

Offering food symbolizes benefiting people by actions; food is mentioned here because it is easy and available, everyone can donate some food. Greeting people with peace symbolizes benefiting them by nice, encouraging, and supporting words; peaceful greeting is mentioned because it is simple and no one has an excuse not to do it.

Accordingly, the best Muslim is he who does not only abstain from harming people but also is doing his best to be beneficent to people as much as he can by words and actions.

The Ideal Muslim

The ideal Muslim not only acts with people with kind, pleasant, peaceful, and respectful manners; and is beneficent to them but also keeps himself away from nonsense and useless words and actions. He does not waste his time and/or efforts in vain actions and purposeless speeches. The

Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “Part of someone’s being a good Muslim is his leaving alone that which does not concern him.” (At-Tirmidhi)

The True Muhajir

The Prophet gave orders to his Companions to migrate to Madinah to escape the persecution of Quraish. They migrated to Madinah gradually and secretly; they left behind their houses, wealth, and possessions for supporting Allah and his Messenger.

The immigrant was honored for his great sacrifices and given the title of “Muhajir”. And he was promised a great reward from Allah. The immigration had stopped after the conquest of Makkah.

The hadith defines the true Muhajer as the one who, in addition to migrating from his homeland to the land of Islam, keeps himself away from all sorts of evil practices; and abandons whatever Allah has forbidden.

But he who migrated from his homeland to the land of Islam, and but does not refrain from indulging in sins and misconduct, has indeed failed to achieve the purpose behind his migration.

_________________________

The article is excerpted from the author’s  “The True Muslim” , published by Islam Presentation Committee (IPC), Kuwait.

Soucre Link
Categories
Articles of Faith New Muslims

Islam: The Religion of Nature

By Muhammad Al-Ghazali

Islam has called itself a ‘Natural Religion’ which is free from all these impurities :

Islam The Religion of Nature

Islam has called itself a ‘Natural Religion’ which is free from all impuritiesز

So (O Prophet) set your face steadily and truly to the faith. (Establish) Allah’s nature on which He has framed mankind. There is no change in what Allah has created; that is the standard religion; but most among mankind do not understand. (Ar-Rum 30:30)

The function of the eye is to see until there is some disturbance in it. The ear hears the sound till it becomes deaf.

The function of the nature is to follow the right path, and to rush towards it with such alacrity as the water rushes down from a height, unless it is overcome by corruption and wickedness, which may take its reins in hands and turn it away from the path of righteousness and blessings.

The disturbing things, which corrupt nature are sometimes the result of the past centuries or sometimes they are the creation of the lowly environment and ha bits and customs, or both these things together are responsible for the disturbances.

These things are a great danger for the nature of man. They cause a variety of diseases in it. The real jihad of a reformer is to fight these inhibitions and customs and to weaken their strength. He tries to relieve nature of these dangers in order that its original purity may be regained and it may be able to fulfill its real responsibility.

Islam has given a full clarification of this method.

After explaining the natural religion in the above quoted verses, the Qur’an says immediately thereafter :

Turn back in repentance to Him, and fear Him; Establish regular prayers, and be not you among those who join gods with Allah, those who split up and become sects, each party rejoicing in that which is with itself. (Ar-Rum 30:31-32)

Remaining on the Right Path

To encourage faith in place of disbelief, righteousness in place of wickedness, to adopt the policy of fearing God, in place of disturbed thoughts in respect of Allah the righteous people’s unity of thought and action-these are the manifestations that show that man has remained on the righteous nature. This has been clarified in the following verse of the Qur’an:

We indeed created man in the best of moulds, then we have abased him to be the lowest of the low, except such as believe and do righteous deeds. (At-Tin 95:4-6)

What is the best mould or form of man? The understanding of Truth and adopting it, fulfillment of its requirements and meeting of its demands.

This is called the attachment to virtuousness and decency, and consideration of these two good qualities in man’s individual and collective life is the real achievement. And attempts to make them operative in all the departments of life is the real mould and form.

But there is a very large number of people who do not reach this high level. They remain attached to the earth only.

They follow their own desires, and express disobedience of God’s commands. In this way they fall to the lowest level

The Qur’an has called this “Asfala safileen” (lowest of the low), to which Allah has thrown such people.

To throw the men of such nature to the lowest level is according to the divine law regarding guidance and transgression. And these laws are true and based on justice. The Qur’an mentions them as under:

And Allah will not mislead a people after He has guided them, in order that He may make clear to them what to fear (and avoid)-for Allah has knowledge of all things. (At-Tawbah 9:115)

In Surah Al-A`raf this law of guidance and transgression has been mentioned thus:

Those who behave arrogantly on the earth in defiance of right-them I will turn away from My signs; even if they see all the signs, they will not believe in them; And if they see the way of right conduct, they will not adopt it as the way of error is the way they will adopt; for they rejected Our signs, and failed to take warning from them. (Al-A`raf 7:146)

Who is it then that remains on the ‘best mould’ and keeps himself away from the indignities of the world? In the verses of the Surah At-Tin occurring immediately after those quoted above the answer is given:

Except such as believe and do the righteous deeds. (At-Tin 95:6)

Thus, the outcome of faith and the righteous deeds is the excellence of moral character.

There Is a Counter to the Wicked Nature

Islam’s stand ,in relation to man’s pure nature and its strength and firmness has been discussed. As regards its dealings with the devil-like natures, that has also been made clear. Islam warns mischievous-natured people. It entrusts its reins in the hands of the healthy intellect; it encourages it to bow down to the pure nature and to surrender itself to Allah.

The prophet has hinted at some of these kinds of natures :

“The son of Adam reaches the old age and two of his habits do not leave him. One is greed and the second is the unending succession of hopes.” (Muslim)

“The worst evil found in man is the frightening cowardice and the un-dignifying miserliness.”(Abu Dawud)

“If the son of Adam is given a valley of gold, he will desire to have another one. And if the other is also given, he will be greedy to have the third one. The hunger of Adam’s son will not be satisfied except when his remains are mixed with the dust. And the one who turns to Allah, Allah accepts his repentance.” (Al-Bukhari )

The Qur’an has mentioned some of the habits:

Fair in the eyes of men is the love of things they covet, women and sons; heaped up hoards of gold and silver; horses branded (for blood and excellence) ; and (wealth of) cattle and well-tilled land. Such are the possessions of this world’s life; but in the nearness to Allah is the best of the goals ( to return to ). (Aal `Imran 3:14)

The first thing Islam wants man to pay attention to is this that to run after the carnal desires of the self and to follow its unending demands will never satisfy self and make it contented. Truth and right path will not be acceptable to it.

The condition of the self is that when its one desire is satisfied, it immediately demands to have some other desire satisfied. It is always busy in eating, drinking, and having a good time, and greedy with desire to have more and more of everything. It has no hesitation in committing sin and acts of aggression and cruelty.

Therefore, Qur’an has forbidden men to follow the desires that have been considered haram (prohibited):

Nor follow you the lusts (of your heart), for they will mislead you from the path of Allah; for those who wander astray from the path of Allah, is a penalty grievous, for that they forget the Day of Account. (Saad 38:26)

_________________________

The article is excerpted from the book  “Muslim Character” , an American-English translation of Muhammad Al-Ghazali’s Khuluq Al-Muslim

Soucre Link
Categories
New Muslims Qur'an & Sunnah

The Qur’an and Our True Identity as Muslims

What does it mean to be Muslim? Put differently, what does make one worthy of being Muslim? What role does the Qur’an play in your life and identity as Muslim?

Two most important things every Muslim must know to do justice to the Book of God, the Qur’an: who is truly a Muslim and what the word ‘Muslim’ means, what defines our identity as Muslims.

Human beings who do not know what humanity is and what the difference is between man and animal will inevitably indulge in behavior unworthy of the human race and attach no value to being human.

Similarly, people who do not know the true meaning of being Muslims and how a Muslim is different from a non-Muslim will behave like non-Muslims and will not be worthy of being Muslims.

Identity of Muslim

Every Muslim, adult or child, should therefore know what it means to be a Muslim, what difference being a Muslim must make to his life, what responsibilities devolve on him, and what limits are set by Islam within which a man remains a Muslim and by transgressing which he ceases to be a Muslim.

Islam means submission and obedience to God. To entrust yourselves completely to God is Islam. To relinquish all claims to absolute freedom and independence and to follow God’s will is Islam.

To surrender yourselves before the sovereignty of God is Islam. If you bring all the affairs of your lives under God you are Muslims and if you keep any of the affairs in your own hands or entrust them to someone other than God you are not Muslims.

To bring your affairs under God means to accept unreservedly the guidance sent by God through His Book, and His Messengers.

It therefore becomes necessary to follow only the Qur’an and the Prophet’s Sunnah. Muslims follow no authority other than that of God, whether it be their reason or customs.

In every matter they seek guidance from God’s Book, the Qur’an, and His Messenger (peace be upon him) to find what they should do and what they should not do. They accept without hesitation whatever guidance they get from there and reject whatever they find opposed to it.

Such total surrender to God is what makes one a Muslim.

Source of Guidance

By contrast, people are certainly not Muslims who, instead of following the Qur’an and the Sunnah, obey the dictates of their own reason and desires, follow the practices of their forefathers, accept what is happening in society, and never bother to ascertain from the Qur’an and Sunnah how to run their affairs, or refuse to accept the teachings of the Qur’an and Sunnah by saying: ‘They do not appeal to my reason’, or ‘They are against the ways of my forefathers’ or ‘The world is moving in an opposite direction’. Such people are liars if they call themselves Muslims.

The moment you recite the word: ‘La ilaha illa Allah and Muhammad rasulu Allah’ (There is no god but Allah and Muhammad is His Messenger) ) you accept that the only law you recognize is the law of God, only God is your sovereign, only God is your ruler, only God you will obey, and only the things given in God’s Book and by His Messengers are true and right.

It means that as soon as you become Muslims you must renounce your authority in favour of God’s authority.

Consequently, you have no right to say, ‘My opinion is this, the prevalent custom is this, the family tradition is this, that scholar and that holy person say this.’

In the face of Allah’s word and His Messenger’s Sunnah, you cannot argue in this manner. You should judge everything in the light of the Qur’an and Sunnah; accept what is in conformity with them and reject what runs counter to them, irrespective of the people who may be behind them.

It is a contradiction in terms to call yourselves Muslims on the one hand, and, on the other, follow your own opinions or the customs of society or some person’s words or actions as against the Qur’an and the Sunnah. Just as a blind person cannot claim to have eyes, nor a deaf person to have ears, so a person who refuses to subordinate the affairs of his life to the dictates of the Qur’an and the Sunnah cannot call himself a Muslim.

Once Being Muslim…

No one who does not want to be a Muslim can be compelled to be one against his will. You are free to adopt any religion you like and call yourselves by any names you like.

But, once having called yourselves Muslims, you must fully understand that you can remain Muslims only as long as you stay within the bounds of Islam. These bounds are: to accept the word of God and His Messenger’s Sunnah as the ultimate criteria of truth and justice and to consider everything opposed to them as wrong.

If you remain within these bounds you are Muslims, but if you overstep them you cease to be part of Islam. To continue, in such circumstances, to consider yourselves and call yourselves Muslims is tantamount to both self-deception and deception of others.

Whoever so judges not according to what God has sent down, they are the unbelievers. (Al-Ma’idah 5:44)

_________________________

The article is an excerpt from Abul A`la Al-Mawdudi’s Let Us Be Muslims.

Soucre Link
Categories
New Muslims Qur'an & Sunnah

How to Build a Lifelong Relationship with the Qur’an

Prolonged companionship with the Qur’an must become one of your most cherished desires and occupations. Read it, therefore, as often and as much as you can. Spend as much time with it as you can find, especially the hours of night.

How to Build a Lifelong Relationship with the Qur’an

Reading the Qur’an is certainly the best way to remember Allah.

In this manner were the souls of the Prophet (blessings and peace be on him) and his Companions schooled in the way of Allah, to prepare them to shoulder the huge and weighty task that the Qur’an placed upon them.

There are a few guidelines and rules in this reward that you must bear in mind.

How Often to Read?

Every day you must read some of the Qur’an. In fact do not consider a day complete unless you have spent some time with the Qur’an. It is better to read regularly, even if it be only a small portion, than to read long parts, but only occasionally.

“Allah likes things which are done regularly, even if little”, said the Prophet (peace be on him). (Al-Bukhari & Muslim).

He also warned especially that you must attend to the Qur’an regularly, otherwise you may easily lose your gains.

“The parable of the companion of the Qur’an is like a tethered camel; a man holds on to it so long as he attends to it, and it escapes if he lets it loose. (Al-Bukhari & Muslim)

How Much to Read?

There can be no fixed answer. It will vary from person to person, and from situation to situation. The guideline must be what Allah, after taking into account all human factors, has said: “Read whatever you can with ease”. (Al-Muzzammil 73:20)

The practice of the Companions and those who followed them varied considerably. Some used to finish the whole Qur’an in two months, some in one month, some in ten days, some in one week, some even in one day. You should, however, bear in mind the following hadith as the governing criteria:

“One who reads the Qur’an in less than three days does not understand it.” (Abu Dawud & At-Tirmidhi)

Once, when Ibn `Umar upon being asked by the Prophet to read the Qur’an in one month insisted on doing so in less time, he told him:

“Read it in seven days and do not increase on this.” (Al-Bukhari)

That the Qur’an is divided into 7 hizb (groups) and 30 juz’ (parts) gives some indication of what is considered desirable.

In this respect Al-Nawawi’s advice is very sensible: One who can discover deeper meanings by contemplation should read less, similarly one who has to devote time in pursuits like education, affairs of government, or important tasks entrusted by Islam may read less. (Kitab Al-Adhkar)

The quantity of reading will very much depend on the purpose of reading. If you just want to spend time with the Qur’an, or get a quick overview, you may read much faster and, therefore, more. If you want to ponder and reflect, you may read much slower and, therefore, less. This is what Al-Ghazali means when he quotes someone as saying ‘I complete the reading of the Qur’an sometimes on every Friday, sometimes every month, sometimes every year. And (in one type of reading) I have been trying to complete it for the last thirty years but have not yet done so’. (Ihya’).

Under our present circumstances, I think, most of us should aim to finish a general reading of the whole Qur’an at least once every eight months. This should not take more than 5-15 minutes every day, depending on whether you understand the meaning directly or through a translation.

But, at least on a few occasions in your lifetime, you should also attempt to finish one reading in seven days. Or, in one month, especially in the month of Ramadan. Some time should also be devoted to reading slowly, with pondering and reflection, though not necessarily daily.

When to Read?

No time of the day or night is unsuitable for reading the Qur’an, nor is there any physical posture in which you may not do so. Allah says:

Remember the name of your Lord at morning and in the evening and part of the night. (Al-Insan 76:25)

Those who remember God when they are standing, and when they are sitting and when they are lying. (Aal `Imran 3:191)

Reading the Qur’an is certainly the best way to remember Him. The Companions and those who followed them, says An-Nawawi, used to read it during all hours of the day and night, whether they stayed in one place or were travelling.

Yet there are some specific times which are more desirable as they are recommended by the Qur’an and the Prophet (peace be on him); those moments are more rewarding and fruitful. So too there are certain recommended postures.

The Qur’an & Night Prayers

The most excellent time to read is at night, and the most desirable posture is to stand in Prayer. In one of the earliest surahs, Al-Muzzammil, as in numerous other places, the Qur’an tells us so:

They are not all alike. Of the People of the Scripture there is a staunch community who recite the revelations of Allah in the night season, falling prostrate (before Him). (Al ‘Imran 3:113)

And some part of the night awake for it, a largess for you. It may be that your Lord will raise you to a praised estate. (Al-Israa’ 17:79)

Is he who prays adoration in the watches of the night, prostrate and standing, bewaring of the Hereafter and hoping for the mercy of his Lord, (to be accounted equal with a disbeliever)? Say (unto them, O Muhammad): Are those who know equal with those who know not? But only men of understanding will pay heed. (Al-Zumar 39:9)

It also explains why reading the Qur’an during night-Prayers enables your heart to remain with your reading and strengthens your will in surrendering yourself to Allah’s guidance and fulfilling the mission He has entrusted to you.

To do so, however, requires that you should (a) memorize some portions of the Qur’an, and (b) remain awake for some time during the night.

All of you may not therefore be able to do so all the time for various reasons; the Qur’an recognizes such limitations. It, therefore, permits you to read ‘whatever you can do with ease’ which means ‘whatever portion’, at ‘whatever time’, and in ‘whatever position’.

The great need and immense benefits of reading the Qur’an in Prayer during the night however remain. Hence you should assign at least some time, however little, even a few minutes with some regular frequency, however long, say weekly or even monthly, for this purpose.

To keep as near as possible to the ideal way, it may be desirable if you read the Qur’an after or before Fajr and `Isha’ Prayers, or at dawn, or before going to bed. “Reading the Qur’an at dawn is especially commended in the Qur’an.

Establish worship at the going down of the sun until the dark of night, and (the recital of) the Qur’an at dawn. Lo! (the recital of) the Qur’an at dawn is ever witnessed. (Al-Israa’ 17:78)

To read the Qur’an while sitting on a chair, resting against a pillow, lying in bed or on a couch is not desirable, but is not prohibited. But never do so without excuse, nor make it a habit.

However, if one totally misses reading the Qur’an only because one cannot afford to sit in a proper posture, one loses something more precious.

_________________________

The article is excerpted from the author’s Way to the Qur’an.

 

Soucre Link