Ramadan Message

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Assalamu Alaykum

All praises are due to the Almighty Allah (SWA) for His infinite blessings and mercy. May His peace and blessing be upon

the Holy Prophet, Nabi Muhammad (PBUH), his companions, his family and followers.

 

As we reach the dawn of a very blessed month of Ramadaan, the Habibia Soofie Mosque Committee, on behalf of the

Habibia Soofie Trust and the Imaamat, wishes you and your family, and all Muslim communities around the world a

very spiritual RAMADAAN KAREEM.

 

May the Almighty Allah bless you with the opportunity to take full advantage of His mercy, blessing and generosity

during the month of Ramadaan. We encourage you to fill your time in His remembrance and Ibaadat, extend continuous

Durood Shareef on the Holy Prophet, Nabi Muhammad (PBUH), join us for Taraweeh and Thikr, spend time with your

families, visit the graves of your beloved deceased and immerse yourself in the blessings of the Ramadaan.

 

Please also remember the poor especially during this time and give generously to those

who are in need of basic sustenance and support. The Habibia Youth Forum is

maintaining the annual "Zammilooni" Blanket Drive for the second year now. They are

currently running collections of a R 100 per blanket and food parcel, which will all go

towards the underpriviledged. Please support them generously by contributing to this

initiative.

 

We also encourage all Musallis to make continuous dua for all the Muslims that are

suffering in Syria, Palestine, Egypt, Burma and Palestine, North Africa, and all over the globe. May

the Almighty Allah ease their pain and release them from all forms of oppression and

suffering.

 

Jazakum Allah Khairan and Ramadaan Kareem to all.

Tribute to Hadrat Shah Muhammad Saied Soofie RA

Assalamu Alaykum

All praise is due to Allah -Subhanahu Wa Ta'ala-, and our choicest blessings and Salutations upon the Master of all creation, Sayyidina Muhammad Rasullulah -Sallalahu Alayhi Wa Sallam-, his Purified Household and companions – may Allah have mercy on all of them -.

Bahaqqe Khwajegane Chiste Murshid, Sa'ide Basafa Meri Khabar Lo!

By the right of the spiritual kings, Oh spiritual guide of the Chisti Order, Sa'id the Purest, come to my aid!

 

The Habibia Soofie Masjid and family would like to bid a sore and sombre farewell to Hazrath Hajee Shah Mohamed Saied Soofie Siddiqi, the head custodian of the Habibia Soofie Saheb Badsha Peer Darbaar in Durban and the Sahibe Sajjada (Head) of the Chishti Nizami Habibi Soofie Order of South Africa, who passed away whilst on Umrah, in the holy land of Makkatul Mukarramah.

Hazrath Hajee Shah Mohamed Saied Soofie was the second eldest son of Hazrath Shah Goolam Muhammad Soofie Sani (may the mercy of Allah -Subhanahu Wa Ta'ala- be upon them), and was honoured with the head custodianship of the Mazaar of Hazrath Soofie Saheb - Rahmatullahi Alayhi - and Hazrath Sheikh Ahmed Badsha Peer - Rahmatullahi Alayhi - after the demise of his father in 1978. Hazrath played a very instrumental role and was often the supervisor to the renovations of various Soofie Masaajid such as Soofie Masjid Riverside, Soofie Masjid Kenville, the Soofie Masjid in Cape Town as well as the Mazaar of Hazrath Soofie Saheb, Hazrath Sheikh Ahmed Badsha Peer and Hazrath Moulana Abdul Latief Qadi (may the mercy of Allah - Subhanahu Wa Ta'ala - be upon them). Hazrath Saied was also the most senior member of the Soofie family.

It is at this time we remember the Hadith of the beloved Prophet - Sallalahu Alayhi Wa Sallam - "A person who passes away while performing the Hajj or Umrah will not be questioned (in the qabr) nor will any reckoning be taken from him (on the day of Qiyamah). He will be told: “Enter Jannah in peace with those who have attained salvation” (Bayhaqi). It was the wish of Hazrath to pass away in the holy lands of Makkatul Mukarammah or Madinatul Munawarrah and by the grace of Almighty Allah - Subhanahu Wa Ta'ala - and through his infinite mercy, the wish was accepted and Hazrath passed away in the precincts of the Holy Haram of Makkah in the hour of Thuhr Salaah on Sunday, 7th Rabi-ul-Akhir 1437. Hazrath was honoured to have his Janaaza Salaah in front of the Ka’aba in the Haram of Makkah with over a million people reading for him. Hazrath was then buried in the cemetery of the Haram, which is located a few kilometers away from Jannatul Mu'ala.

Hazrath Shah Mohamed Saied Soofie will be remembered for his humble, kind and modest ways. He was a person who occupied himself with the remembrance of Allah -Subhanahu Wa Ta'ala -. His nights were spent in voluntarily and Tahajjud prayers, whilst the day was spent attending functions, visiting the sick and ensuring the needs of the community was fulfilled. He would ensure that he always honoured the invite of his Muslim brother, whether they be rich or poor. Hazrath has left a great legacy and history will judge his unselfish contribution to the Muslim community in Durban and all over South Africa.

When the news of Hazrath's passing reached South Africa, thousands of Mureedeen, devotees and followers gathered in Riverside and other Masaajid across the country, whilst others took to social media expressing their deepest sympathy and condolences, in respect to this great Sufi master. What more can be said about a man who lived his life in the service of Allah and Islam, illuminated his days and nights with Athkaar and Durood, and in reward, he was granted an Illuminated end.

We pray to Allah - Subhanahu Wa Ta'ala - to grant him a high abode in Jannah-Tul-Firdaus, to make his grave a Garden from the Gardens of Paradise, to widen his grave and to fill it with Light upon Light Insha Allah. May Allah - Subhanahu Wa Ta'ala - honour him with the company of the beloved Prophet Muhammad - Sallalahu Alayhi Wa Sallam -, the Awliyaa and the Saliheen and may he be raised on the day Qiyaamah with all the great personalities amongst whom he lays buried in Makkatul Mukarramah.

Ameen.

 

Moulana Goolam Qutbuddien Kagee
Habibia Soofie Masjid- Cape Town

Hazrath Sheikh Abdul Kareem Kagee Siddiqi Habibi RA

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Imam Abdul Karriem RA presenting Sheikh Abdul Basiet RA with a garland.He was born in 1912, and was the youngest son of Hazrath Ahmed Qadi Siddiqui and Kulsoom. His mother Kulsoom was one of the seven sisters of Hazrath Shah Moulana Abdul-Latief Qadi Siddiqui (R.A.). 

He received his education at the Habibia Soofie Madrassa, Doornhoogte, Cape Town. He was given the administration and control of the khanqah at the age of 24. In 1936, he married Khurshid Bi, the daughter of his maternal uncle, Hazrath Shah Mohammed Yusuf Habibi.

With the community assisting him, he brought changes at the Darbar. In the 1940's he enclosed the verandah of the original masjid. In 1947, he became the mureed of Hazrath Shah Goolam Hafiz Soofie (Bhaijaan R.A.), the fourth son of Hazrath Soofie Saheb (R.A.). He received the khilafat from his murshid (Hazrath Bhaijaan R.A.) in 1952. In 1964, he undertook the present back extension of the masjid. The madrassa was rebuilt by brick. For feeding purposes during functions at the Darbar, a shelter between the madrassa and the masjid was built. In 1981, Sheikh Abdul-Basit Abdus-Samad R.A., the great Egyptian Qari, visited Cape Town. He received a garland from Imam Abdul-Kareem R.A.

In 1986, he laid the present foundation for the extension, assisted by members of the family and members of the congregation. On the 13th Shawwaal 1406 H (Sunday 21 June 1986), he passed away at the of 74.

The following are his off-spring: Goolam Ally, Mohammed Yusuf, Abdur-Raheem, Goolam Qutboodeen, Zubeida Khatoon, Goolam Rasool, Zohra, Khairunnisaa, Goolam Shabeer, and Goolam Sabier. Goolam Ally, Muhammad Yusuf, Abdur-Raheem, and Goolam Rasool passed away.

* Eid al-Fitr Mubarak 1437! *

Dear beloved Brothers and Sisters,

Assalamu alaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatu

In the Name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful

On this special day of Eid ul Fitr, we express our immense praise and deepest gratitude to the Almighty Allah (SWA) for his infinite blessings and mercy, having gifted us with the opportunity to experience another blessed month of Ramadaan. May he shower His peace and blessing upon the Holy Prophet, Nabi Muhammad (PBUH), his companions, his family and followers.


On behalf of the The Habibia Soofie Trust Committee and the Imaamat we wish all the Musaalis, the residents of the surrounding areas, all communities of the Western Cape and our visitors from near and abroad, a very blessed and joyous EID Mubarak. May the Almighty Allah enlightened your homes, bless your families with peace and happiness and may he keep us all on the Siratul-Mustaqeem. We express our gratitude to all those that have contributed to activities at Habibia Mosque during this very blessed and spiritual month of Ramadaan.


• We thank all the Hufaath who have led us during Taraweeh, Salatul Layl and Tasbih Salah, having the beautiful Qur'an with so much passion and sincerity, often bringing tears to our eyes
• Thank you to the Muattheens who woke up during the early hours of the morning and stayed up till late at night to call us to salaah and reciting during the salaah breaks
• We thank our local Moulana’s and visiting Shuyukh for the lectures conducting during the Jumuah and Taraweeh Salaahs.
• We also thank the cleaning staff and all those that have contributed to the maintenance of the mosque. It’s a huge task to ensure that the mosque is kept clean and all provisions for the Musaalis are met with a high standard.
• Finally, we also thank those that have contributed financially and in kind toward the Ramadaan programs, the food hampers, the Zamillooni Blanket and Food Initiative and towards the maintenance of the mosque, both local donors and throughout Southern Africa.

Jazakallah to all and may Almighty Allah bless you and your families for your contribution.
THE HABIBIA SOOFIE TRUST COMMITTEE

 

Shabe-Baraat 1437

Insha Allah, the programme will take place after Maghrib on Saturday 21 May.

The lecture will be delivered by Shaykh Goolam Hafiz Rooknodien.

For more info, please see the Masjid noticeboards.

All welcome! Ladies accommodation provided. Light refreshments will be served thereafter.

The Everlasting Mercy of the Noble Prophet Muhammad (SAW)

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All praise is due to Allah, Lord of the worlds, and peace and blessings upon the most noble of His prophets, Nabee Muhammad (SAW), his family, his companions and upon everyone who follows them with goodness until the Day of Judgement.

Allah’s purpose for the creation of mankind is that man should worship Him. To assist mankind in this regard Allah sent His prophets as a guide and a form of mercy unto humanity. All the prophets of Allah possessed bravery and determination, but on Muhammad (saw) Allah bestowed the greatest qualities that would make him a worthy leader. Prophet Muhammad (saw) is the prime of Allah’s servants, the best of His creation and the dearest of his servants towards Him.

Allah chose for Muhammad (saw) some of His own attributes thus distinguishing him from the other prophets. Allah named the Noble Prophet as ‘the Merciful’ when he said: ‘ A messenger has indeed come to you, from amongst yourselves. It grieves him that you should suffer, he is very anxious over you and to the believers he is most Kind and Merciful.’

Allah has an abundance of mercy that is specifically for the believers, and Allah has bestowed on the Prophet (saw) a great blessing by making him a mercy unto mankind and creation. Allah says: ‘And We have not sent you but as a mercy to all the worlds.’ ‘The worlds’ refers to man, Jinn, animals, trees, stones and the entire universe; therefore what an honour for Nabee Muhammad (saw)! This characteristic of mercy became manifested in the Prophet (saw) until it dominated his being and led him to excel to the greatest level of excellence. Thus Nabee Muhammad (saw) became a leader to man, a perfect example, a Guide and the greatest messenger to mankind.

This mercy that Allah had placed in the character of the Prophet (saw) manifested itself and impacted on all aspects of his life; it affected his interactions with not only his family and companions, but his enemies and all of creation as well. A few such examples will now be illustrated.

The Mercy of the Prophet (saw) to the Believers

This mercy was manifested in his dealings with the believing servants of Allah. Prophet Muhammad (saw) was like a ray of grace, kindness and thoughtfulness. His living example of excellence in all facets of life led to the believers trusting him and accepting his message as the final prophet of Allah. This meant that the Prophet (saw) was able to lead them to worship Allah as he should rightfully be worshipped. Through this mercy the Muslims became sincerely affectionate among themselves; they had mercy on each other and took each other as brothers. Therefore, some of the believers were a mercy for others like one body: if one part of the body is injured, the rest of it becomes unstable/imbalanced with pain and fever. Through the abundance of Allah’s mercy, the believers became the most merciful of people over themselves and their families; they managed the harm that the disbelievers inflicted upon them, and bore with patience the insolence of people as a mercy to them.

The Mercy of the Prophet (saw) to all of Mankind

The Prophet’s mercy was not limited to the companions; it encompassed all people. When Allah sent the Angel of the Mountains to crush the mountain over the disbelievers, the prophet interceded by saying: ‘No, perhaps Allah will bring out from their offspring who will worship Allah as One.’ He did not want their destruction and ruin even though they had injured and insulted him and his companions. Such was the mercy of Prophet Muhammad (saw)! The Prophet said to the people: ‘The Most Gracious will have mercy on those who have mercy, so have mercy for those on the earth, and the One in the heavens will have mercy on you.’ The Prophet is also reported to have said: ‘Whoever does not have mercy, will not be shown mercy.’ This is a general call to all humankind: the believer and the disbeliever, male and female, the young and the elderly. Nabee Muhammad (saw) is calling out to all people that this is the mercy of Allah so we should accept it properly and not let it go to waste, else our spiritual side will be wasted.

The Mercy of the Prophet to Small Children

It is narrated that the Prophet Muhammad (saw) was joking with the small children and kissing them while his companions were around and observing him. A man from the Bedouins went to the Prophet (saw) and said: ‘It is strange of you; you are joking with children and kissing them. I have ten children, and I have not kissed one of them!’ The Prophet replied: What can I do for you while Allah has certainly removed mercy from your heart?’ From this it can be concluded that great emphasis was placed on treating children with love, kindness and compassion, because they are the adults of the future and in turn would continue the cycle of love and mercy.

The Mercy of the Prophet (saw) to the Jinn

The Prophet Muhammad (saw) was sent as a messenger to the world of man and jinn; and just as he was a mercy to mankind he was a mercy to the jinns as well. The Prophet (saw) did not harm the jinns, nor did he cause them grief. The prophet (saw) advised his companions to fulfil the needs of the jinn by instructing them to not ‘clean yourselves with bones or dung, for indeed, it is the food of your brothers the Jinn.’

The Prophet (saw) as a Mercy to the Animals

The Prophet Muhammad (saw) came to mankind with a religion that says to them ‘There is not a thing, except that it glorifies His praise.’ This implies that everything in the universe praises Allah, including the animals. The Prophet (saw) admonished people that they should treat animals with kindness and mercy, as this was a means of pleasing the Almighty, and a means of showing gratitude to Him for having provided animals as a form of sustenance to man. It is narrated that a woman entered the fire of jahannam for not feeding a starving and thirsty cat, while a man was granted jannah for climbing down a well to get water for a thirsty dog. Thus the Prophet (saw), through his example and his teachings was a mercy unto the animals.

The Prophet as a Mercy to the Trees and Stones

The Prophet Muhammad (saw) was as merciful to the trees and stones as he was to any other creation. He used to advise his soldiers who were going to battle to not unnecessarily cut down a tree or destroy a nest. It is also narrated that before a mimbar was built for him, the Prophet (saw) would place his hand on the trunk of a cut date palm while he was lecturing. As soon as the mimbar was ready and the Prophet (saw) began using it, the trunk began to cry like a small child. When the Prophet (saw) heard it, he descended from the mimbar, placed his compassionate hand on it and did not take his hand away until the trunk calmed down. This was a great act of kindness and mercy

The Prophet Muhammad (saw) was indeed a distinguished person with an exemplary character. He was honoured with the Almighty’s attribute of mercy for the benefit of mankind and all of Allah’s creation. With this mercy

the Prophet (saw) was able to lead mankind to becoming more tolerant, more caring, more compassionate and more loving. We pray to Allah that all His servants will have mercy on each other, and through this attribute of mercy we become His dearest servants, Ameen.

Adapted from, Dr Jamaal Abu Hassaan, Lecturer of Uloomul Qur’aan and Tafseer, Zarqa Private University, Jordan. January 2007

 

Remembering the birthday of the Noble Prophet Muhammad (saw)

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This article is dedicated to the Beloved Prophet Muhammad (saw) and all Muslims, especially the Muslims of South Africa.

Remembering the birthday of the Noble Prophet Muhammad (saw)

Every year, in this month of Rabbi-ul-Awwal, Muslims through out the Islamic World commemorate the birth of the beloved and most esteemed Prophet Muhammad (saw). He was sent as a messenger from Allah to guide and lead mankind from a state of ignorance and darkness to one of light and spiritual awakening.

When the Prophet (saw) was born, the signs of goodness, peace and tranquillity slowly began to manifest itself in the lives and characters of the people of Makkah, and all they interacted with, including the trees and animals. Thus the birth of the beloved Prophet (saw) was a mercy unto all creation.

Verily this birthday represents the movement of the rebirth of human nature from the bonds of injustice and evil to justice and goodness; it represents the spreading of mercy in this world that was overcome with corruption and sin. This birthday came to enlighten mankind to its true nature of goodness and kindness, so that the veils of ignorance would be lifted and truth and justice would reign supreme.

The birth of the Prophet Muhammad (saw) marked an end to the social injustices that existed not only in Makkah, but everywhere in the world. The Qur’aan states ‘All of you are from Adam and Adam is from sand.’ This implies that all people are equal, irrespective of their social background. There is also no differentiation between male and female: ‘Oh mankind! Verily, We created you from a male and a female, and We made you into nations and tribes so that you may know each other. Indeed, the most honourable of you in front of Allah is the one who is the most God-conscious.’ This illustrates that the male and female complete each other, and neither of the two can live without the other. Thus the birth of the Prophet (saw) had tremendous implications for the concept of equality and social justice.

The celebration of the Prophet’s birthday is also a reminder of the brotherhood and unity of Islam. It is a form of unification of Muslims when all are remembering and commemorating the birth of the noblest of prophets whose message of Islam brought with it a new way of life that resounded with mercy, truth, kindness, love, compassion, justice and equality for all. It is also a celebration of knowledge and spiritual awakening. The Prophet Muhammad (saw) was a teacher who led by example, and his teachings encompassed all facets of life in all its diversity. Thus he brought about an awareness and an appreciation for their existence that was previously lacking in his followers. They gained a new and enlightened perspective on the world, and were empowered in this way.

The birthday of the Prophet (saw) is a reminder of the courage that Islamic Aqidah nurtured in the spirits of the Muslims. They chose to face the challenges that confronted them, rather than running away; they began loving death for the sake of their religion and yearning for it, rather than fearing it. Thus the Muslims died for the highest and most honourable of reasons: the survival of the religion of Islam.

On the 12th of Rabbi-ul-Awwal we recall all the goodness, all the love, all the brotherhood, all the cooperation, all the strength, all the courage and all the humanity of the Muslims. It marks the day of moving from a state of ignorance and darkness to one of enlightenment. Thus, are we aware that the birthday of our beloved prophet Muhammad (saw) is, without a doubt, the real day of our birth!

Adapted from, Dr Jamaal Mahmood Abu Hassaan, teacher of Uloomul Qur’aan (Sciences of the Qur’aan) and Tafseer, Zarqa Private University, Jordan.

Prophet Muhammad S.A.W: An Exalted Example of Character

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In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful. All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger S.A.W.

In the beginning, it should be noted that our love for our Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) is really great. This love places many obligations and duties on our shoulders. Among these duties is to show respect to him, study his Biography and follow in his footsteps, defend him against any misconception and to try to spread the truth about his morals, manners and Sunnah.

Referring to Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) Allah, Most High, says, “And you (stand) on an exalted standard of character.” (Al-Qalam 68: 4) “Ye have indeed in the Messenger of Allah a beautiful pattern (of conduct) for any one whose hope is in Allah and the Final Day, and who engages much in the praise of Allah.” (Al-Ahzab 33: 21)

Muhammad SAW: A Unique Character

The uniqueness of the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) is that he was not only a great person in his own time, but he is great for all times, for all people of any race, color, nationality or geographical location. His example was good for the 7th century Arabs and it is good also for the humanity living now at the beginning of this 21st century. He is an excellent example for the rich and poor, for young and old, for rulers and ruled, for the most intelligent as well as the most common people. Allah sent him as His Prophet for all humanity. Allah says in the Qur’an: Say: “O people! I am sent unto you all, as the Messenger of Allah, to whom belongs the dominion of the heavens and the earth: there is no god but He: it is He that gives both life and death. So believe in Allah and His Messenger, the unlettered Prophet, who believed in Allah and His Words: follow him that (so) you may be guided.” (Al-A`raf 7: 158)

Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) practiced what he preached. He very carefully and meticulously followed the Qur’an, Allah’s Word that was revealed to him. He followed and lived the Qur’an at every moment in every detail of his life. His life was the reflection of Allah’s Words. He became the Qur’an in person, the embodiment of the Qur’an, or one may even say in a metaphorical sense “the Word in flesh”. It is reported in a Hadith: Sa`d ibn Hisham said that he asked `A’ishah, Prophet’s wife (may Allah be pleased with her) “Tell me about the character of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him).” She said, “His character was the Qur’an.” (Musnad Ahmad, Hadith No. 24139)

Some of His Attributes

The morality of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) was not restricted to just a few moral attributes, but included diverse traits and aspects of life. He was kind, compassionate, caring, generous and humble, but he was also strong, brave, eloquent, wise and insightful. He was a great planner, organizer and thinker, yet he was also a man of faith, trust and devotion to Allah. He was involved and active with his family and community but he did not neglect his prayers, fasting and devotion to Allah. Actually, he prayed so much that no one prayed like him. He was exemplary as a teacher, preacher, Imam, leader, statesman, and judge, commander of the armies as well as a husband, a father, a grandfather, a businessman, a neighbour and a friend.

Before he received the honor of nubuwwah (Prophethood), he was known among the people of Makkah as As-Sadiq Al-Amin, the most honest and trustworthy person. He kept this character throughout his life. He never broke a pledge or promise. Even his enemies could not accuse him of being dishonest. He was a most humble person. He used to mingle with the poor and sit with them. He stopped people standing up for him. He used to sit wherever there was a place available in an assembly and never sought a prominent or elevated place. The newcomers sometimes would not know who was the Prophet among the people. When he entered the city of Makkah as a conqueror leading a big army, he entered in a most humble manner. In a unique demonstration of humility his forehead was touching the saddle of his camel!

Muhammad: A Mercy to Mankind

He was the most merciful person. Allah called him as “A mercy to the worlds” (Al-Anbiya’ 21: 107) He was merciful to his family, followers, friends, even enemies. He was merciful to young and old, to humans and to animals. Those who persecuted him in Makkah and killed his relatives and his followers, when they were defeated in the battles and brought as captives, were forgiven by him. He did not ever take revenge or retaliated. He was the most forgiving person.

Constancy was a very important aspect of his moral behavior. Once he established some good way or practice he used to follow it and adhere to it always. He used to say: “The dearest deed to Allah is the one that is performed regularly, even if it was a little.” (Al-Bukhari, No. 5983)

His Names

The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) has many names reflecting his attributes and qualities. Some of the most beautiful names of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) mentioned in both the Qur’an and Hadith are the following: Muhammad (the praised one), Ahmad (most praiseworthy), Hamid (the giver of praise and thanks), Ar-Rasul (the Messenger), An-Nabi (the Prophet), Shahid (the witness), Rashid (the righteous), Bashir (the giver of good news), Nadhir (the warner), Da`i (the caller to Allah), Hadi (the guide), Mahi (the remover of evil), Fatih (the conqueror), Ra’uf (the compassionate), Rahim (the merciful), Mujtaba (the chosen one), Mustafa (the selected one), Murtada (the well-pleasing in the sight of Allah), As-Sadiq (the truthful), Al-Amin (the trustworthy), Musaddiq (the confirmer of truth), Habibullah (Allah’s beloved one), Safiullah (the one selected by Allah), Najiullah (the one protected by Allah), Shakur (the most grateful one), Karim (the noble one), Hakim (the wise one), Sayyid (the leader), Siraj Munir (the shining lamp), Jawwad (the generous one), `Adil (the Just), and Khatam Ar-Rusul (the final Messenger). May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him!

by Mufti Muzzammiel Siddiqi

 

Muhammad (SAW) the Prophet of our time and all times

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Allah SWT our Creator who knows what is best for us, teaches us in the Quráan how to achieve success in all its elements, this success can be achieved by following the footsteps of the best of creation, Nabi Muhammad SAW. Allah SWT says “You have indeed in the Messenger of Allah a beautiful pattern (of conduct) for any one whose hope is in Allah and the Final Day, and who engages much in the remembrance of Allah.”(33:21). He says in another verse “If you obey him (Muhammad), you shall be on right guidance” (24:54)

Prophet Muhammad SAW is the most ideal role model of all times.

Let us reflect upon the following: The Holy Qurán is the book of guidance which contains everything, it’s the revelation of Allah the All wise, All-knowing, and whoever adheres to the Qurán will certainly attain success. Allah SWT says: “And We have sent down to you (Muhammad) a Book explaining all things, a Guide, a Mercy, and Glad Tidings to Muslims” (16:89).

The beloved Prophet SAW was an embodiment of the Qurán, that is how he was described by his wife Sayeda Aísha who lived with him and knew him very well, when she was asked about the character of the beloved Prophet SAW she answered by saying “His character was the Qurán” (Muslim). It is more significant when this description comes from the wife of the prophet SAW, because the relationship with the family shows a man’s character, it’s possible to pretend or put on a good character with others whom we spend a short time with, but the real test is with our families whom we live with. The Prophet SAW said “The best of you is he who is best to his family, and I am the best of you to my family" (Tirmithi, Ibn Majah).

We are very fortunate that the life of the Prophet SAW has been recorded in its minute details.  Allah SWT promises to preserve His book, “We have, without doubt, sent down the remembrance (Qurán); and We will surely guard it (from corruption).” (15:9). The Sunnah of the Prophet SAW explains the Qurán, that is why the preservation of the Qurán includes the preservation of the Sunnah which is what the Prophet SAW said, did or approved. Allah SWT says, “Nor does he (Muhammad) speak of (his own) desire, it is only a revelation revealed (to him)” (53:3, 4). Furthermore, Allah SWT teaches us about the perfection of the message of the Prophet SAW and how important it is to follow, “And whatsoever the messenger (Muhammad) gives you, take it; and whatsoever he forbids you, abstain (from it)”(59:7).

Allah SWT perfected the character of His beloved Prophet SAW that we find guidance in all aspects of his life. This guidance is in words and actions. Let us compare between the life of the Prophet Muhammad SAW and some of the other Prophets, peace and blessings be upon them all. This comparison is in no way degrading of the other Prophets and we can find this clearly in the Qurán as Allah SWT says “Those Messengers! We preferred some of them to others; to some of them Allah spoke (directly); others He raised to degrees (of honor)” (2:253). This comparison shows the perfection in the personality of the Prophet SAW. If you study the life of Prophet Eesa A.S, you will not find examples in following him as a husband or a father, on the other hand, there are many examples which show Prophet Muhammad SAW as the most ideal husband, the best father, wise father in law and the most well balanced family man.

The other example is that of Prophet Sulaiman A.S who was a king. You cannot find a role model for a poor man. However, Prophet Muhammad SAW experienced every thing, in poverty he was patient and contented, and in prosperity he was generous and grateful.  In the life of the Prophet SAW we find direction for all sorts of situations; in peace and war, defeat and victory, prosperity and poverty, ease and difficulty and for every experience that a human being can go through.

The perfect model of the beloved Prophet SAW transforms lives. It transformed the life of Abu Bakr, Umar Ibn Al-Khataab, Uthmaan Ibn Afaan, Ali Ibn Abi Talib and all the other companions may Allah be pleased with them. They were the stars around the moon of guidance and mercy. They filled this world with light and they were a great proof of the perfection of the example of the Prophet SAW.   The perfect model of the Prophet SAW continued to transform the lives of all the great Muslim leaders, reformers and scholars who have come before us, and still continues to do so to millions of people around the globe. This is evident in Islam being the fastest growing religion in the world.

The perfect model of the Prophet SAW was the salvation and solution of all the problems of that time, and the times after him and there is no doubt it is the cure to the challenges we face in this world today. The Prophet SAW is described in Surah Al-Anbiyaa as a mercy to all worlds. He was a true mercy to all around him, if we aim towards being a mercy to Allah’s creation we will indeed solve all problems we face in the modern world starting from global warming, armed conflicts, poverty, immorality, disunity and other challenges which threaten our existence on this earth.

Many Non Muslim personalities spoke highly of the perfect model and character of the Prophet SAW, below are some of the sayings of prominent leaders and writers.

• Mahatma Gandhi said; “I wanted to know the best of the life of one who holds today an undisputed sway over the hearts of millions of mankind.... I became more than ever convinced that it was not the sword that won a place for Islam in those days in the scheme of life. It was the rigid simplicity, the utter self-effacement of the Prophet the scrupulous regard for pledges, his intense devotion to his friends and followers, his intrepidity, his fearlessness, his absolute trust in God and in his own mission. These and not the sword carried everything before them and surmounted every obstacle. When I closed the second volume (of the Prophet's biography), I was sorry there was not more for me to read of that great life. 'Young India,'1924.

• Sir George Bernard Shaw said; “I have studied him - the wonderful man, and in my opinion from being an anti-Christ, he must be called the Savior of Humanity. I believe that if a man like him were to assume the dictatorship of the modern world he would succeed in solving its problems in a way that would bring it the much needed peace and happiness. 'The Genuine Islam,' Vol. 1, No. 8, 1936.

• Michael Hart in his book The 100, A Ranking of the Most Influential Persons In History, New York, 1978 said; “My choice of Muhammad to lead the list of the world’s most influential persons may surprise some readers and may be questioned by others, but he was the only man in history who was supremely successful on both the secular and religious levels…it is probable that the relative influence of Muhammad on Islam has been larger than the combined influence of Jesus Christ and St. Paul on Christianity.....it is this unparalleled combination of secular and religious influence which I feel entitles Muhammad to be considered the most influential single figure in human history.

Oh Allah, we ask you to shower your peace and blessings upon the most beloved Prophet SAW, his family, companions and all those who follow him righteously until the Day of Judgment. Ameen.

by Sheikh Ahmad Abu Ghazaleh

 

The Excellence Of Durood Sharief

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Allah says in the Holy Quran, “And WE raised you in praise/rememberance.”

The Blessed Prophet of Islam, The Prophet of Peace, Muhammed S.A.W, is Allah’s greatest creation. Allah himself praised our blessed Prophet S.A.W in many instances, for His character and His patience and perseverance. But no praise can be greater than what Allah says in the Holy Quran, in Surah Al Ahzab verse 56, “Indeed Allah and His Angels send salutations on The Messenger, O’ You who believe, You also send salutations upon him!” This verse of the Holy Quran made it compulsory upon all the believing men and women to send salutations upon the Blessed Messenger S.A.W. It also raises the Prophet S.A.W in status, for Allah himself, Our creator, Our Nourisher, He who is not dependent on any creation, He who is one, The Supreme, is informing us that He also sends salutations upon the beloved, Muhammad S.A.W, and that Allah has also made it obligatory on the Angels to also send Salutations on the Prophet Muhammad S.A.W.

Salutations or Durood Shareef as we have grown accustomed to calling it, is one of the greatest and yet simplest means to achieving closeness to Allah. In order for any individual to gain Allah’s focus and attention, he has to be engaged in actions that please Allah Ta-Ala. And it is beyond a shadow of doubt that Allah’s focus and attention is on that individual who is constantly remembering and saluting His Beloved, Muhammad S.A.W.

Sayedina Hassaan Bin Thaabit (May Allah Be Pleased with Him), the great poet of the Prophet S.A.W composed various couplets in praise of the Prophet S.A.W. In one Couplet he speaks about how Allah has raised the status of the Prophet S.A.W, He says, “And Allah brought together the name of the Prophet S.A.W with his name in every instance, even at the time when the Azaan is called, When the Muazzin says, I testify that there is no diety besides Allah, his azaan will not be complete without him also saying, I testify that Muhammed S.A.W is Allah’s Messenger.”

There are various Ahaadith that speak about the benefits of sending salutations. We will extract just a few from the various narrations in order to see the benefits of sending salutations to the greatest of Mankind.

1. When we send Salutations to the Prophet S.A.W we are obeying a direct order from Allah Ta-Ala. This obedience Insha Allah itself will earn us great reward.

2. We are following in Allah Ta-ala’s example Himself, for Allah Himself says in the Holy Quran that He also sends salutations upon His beloved Muhammed S.A.W.

3. When an individual sends one Durood Shareef or one Salutation on the Messenger of Allah, according to various traditions Allah sends ten greetings back for him.

4. Also, not only are there ten greetings sent for him, but he is raised by Allah in status ten positions, ten good deeds are written for him, and ten bad deeds are removed from his book of actions.

5. Durood shareef is also a means of getting ones Dua to be accepted. Sayedina Ali R.A says that: “A veil is formed between Allah and every Dua that a believer makes, until the person making the dua sends salutations on the blessed Prophet S.A.W. If he sends his salutations on the Blessed Messenger S.A.W then that veil disappears and the dua presents itself to Allah Ta-Allah. If the person making the Dua does not send Salutations on the Prophet S.A.W, then his dua returns to the earth and remains unanswered.” One of the students of Abdullah Ibn Abbas R.A also states: “If anyone of you wishes to have his duas answered, then before making the dua, he should send durood shareef to the Prophet S.A.W, and after making his dua he should complete by sending durood shareef, for whenever Salutations are sent, the salutations are accepted, and Allah is the Most Honourable, that he will accept the salutation in the beginning and the salutation at the end, and leave out accepting the dua that is between the two salutations.”

6. Durood Shareef is also a means of gaining closeness to the Messenger of Allah S.A.W. If one constantly sends his salutations then beside the reward, the blessing etc that is attained, he also attains the intercession of the Prophet S.A.W on the day of Resurrection, when we as Muslims will need the assistance of the beloved Prophet S.A.W the most.

7. Sayedina Ghouse Paak, Mohiyudeen Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilani R.A states in his book, Safinatul Qadiriyah, that when an individual sends salutations on the Prophet S.A.W, what could be more pleasing, more honourable for him, than his salutation been answered, and him receiving a reply to his salutation. That is why when you send Durood, send it with the utmost of respect and sincerity, for the Messenger of Allah S.A.W that you are sending it too, is not dead, but alive and according to narrations he is also aware of who is sending salutations upon him, and he gives a reply to it.

8. Sending Durood Shareef on Allah’s blessed messenger also saves a believer from falling into the category of a Bakheel or Miser. In a hadith narrated by Sayedina Aisha R.A.H, she says that once the Messenger of Allah S.A.W said, “Woe unto him who does not see me on the day of resurrection! So She asked, Änd who will be of the unfortunate ones who will not have the privilege of seeing you on the day of resurrection O Messenger of Allah S.A.W? The Blessed Prophet S.A.W replied: “The Miser. He will not see me on the day of resurrection!” She asked: “And who is this Miser? The Messenger of Allah S.A.W. replied:” He who hears my name but does not send salutations on me”. Allah save us from this unfortunate group of believers. Ameen!

9. Another great benefit of Durood Shareef is salvation from the punishment in the grave. Sayedina Sufyaan At Thouri R.A, who is a great narrater of Hadith, narrates that one day whilst he was making Tawaaf of the Ka-aba, he came across an individual also in tawaaf, but this individual was not reading Takbeer or Tahleel, but he was reciting constantly Durood Shareef. Being one of the foremost Imams of his time, he questioned the man, on why he was reciting Durrod. The man in return narrated to him that one day he accompanied his father on a journey of Hajj, and whilst on that journey his father took ill, and passed away, immediately after passing away, his fathers face turned pitch black. The man was so ashamed and yet frightened that immediately he made the ghusl and covered the face. He says that after a little while sitting besides the body he fell asleep, and in his sleep, he sees an extremely fair and handsome looking man coming towards the janazah. The man takes a white cloth and throws it over his fathers face, and immediately the face of the father returns to normal. He asked the man who are you? The Man replies, Ï am Muhammed (S.A.W) The Prophet of Allah. Your father was a sinner who constantly transgressed against Allah’s commandments, but he constantly sent salutations on me. Because of his salutations on me Allah has forgiven Him!” The son awakes and sees that his father’s face had returned to normal.

These are various lesson and benefits that we as believers can attain by send Durood and Salaam on the Blessed Messenger Muhammed S.A.W.

In conclusion I would like to mention the wise words from the Sufi Grandmaster, Sayedina Imam Ahmed Zarrooq R.A. “Make constant Zikr of Allah and salutation on the Prophet S.A.W, for they are both steps on the path that will take you closer to Allah Ta-Ala. Even when a person is seeking a Murshid, and is unable to find his Murshid and guide to take him to Allah, the Messenger S.A.W has said that Salutations on me is NOOR, LIGHT, and when that light enters the heart then all forms of darkness disappears, and if one is unable to find his way due to darkness, then the Prophet S.A.W Noor is the best guide to that which is the best way.

Allah give us understanding and grant us success in this world and the next. O’ Allah send salutations on Muhammed S.A.W and the Family of Muhammed S.A.W like you sent salutations on Ibrahim and the Family of Ibrahim A.S.

In conclusion we must constantly engage in those actions that please Allah. It is beyond doubt that the true love for the beloved of Allah (SWT) pleases Him. One can achieve true love for the blessed Messenger S.A.W only after constant remembrance and salutations upon Him.

by Moulana Goolam Muhammad Soofie

 

Muhammad (SAW) the Prophet of our time and all times

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Allah SWT our Creator who knows what is best for us, teaches us in the Quráan how to achieve success in all its elements, this success can be achieved by following the footsteps of the best of creation, Nabi Muhammad SAW. Allah SWT says “You have indeed in the Messenger of Allah a beautiful pattern (of conduct) for any one whose hope is in Allah and the Final Day, and who engages much in the remembrance of Allah.”(33:21). He says in another verse “If you obey him (Muhammad), you shall be on right guidance” (24:54)

Prophet Muhammad SAW is the most ideal role model of all times.

Let us reflect upon the following: The Holy Qurán is the book of guidance which contains everything, it’s the revelation of Allah the All wise, All-knowing, and whoever adheres to the Qurán will certainly attain success. Allah SWT says: “And We have sent down to you (Muhammad) a Book explaining all things, a Guide, a Mercy, and Glad Tidings to Muslims” (16:89).

The beloved Prophet SAW was an embodiment of the Qurán, that is how he was described by his wife Sayeda Aísha who lived with him and knew him very well, when she was asked about the character of the beloved Prophet SAW she answered by saying “His character was the Qurán” (Muslim). It is more significant when this description comes from the wife of the prophet SAW, because the relationship with the family shows a man’s character, it’s possible to pretend or put on a good character with others whom we spend a short time with, but the real test is with our families whom we live with. The Prophet SAW said “The best of you is he who is best to his family, and I am the best of you to my family" (Tirmithi, Ibn Majah).

We are very fortunate that the life of the Prophet SAW has been recorded in its minute details.  Allah SWT promises to preserve His book, “We have, without doubt, sent down the remembrance (Qurán); and We will surely guard it (from corruption).” (15:9). The Sunnah of the Prophet SAW explains the Qurán, that is why the preservation of the Qurán includes the preservation of the Sunnah which is what the Prophet SAW said, did or approved. Allah SWT says, “Nor does he (Muhammad) speak of (his own) desire, it is only a revelation revealed (to him)” (53:3, 4). Furthermore, Allah SWT teaches us about the perfection of the message of the Prophet SAW and how important it is to follow, “And whatsoever the messenger (Muhammad) gives you, take it; and whatsoever he forbids you, abstain (from it)”(59:7).

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Allah SWT perfected the character of His beloved Prophet SAW that we find guidance in all aspects of his life. This guidance is in words and actions. Let us compare between the life of the Prophet Muhammad SAW and some of the other Prophets, peace and blessings be upon them all. This comparison is in no way degrading of the other Prophets and we can find this clearly in the Qurán as Allah SWT says “Those Messengers! We preferred some of them to others; to some of them Allah spoke (directly); others He raised to degrees (of honor)” (2:253). This comparison shows the perfection in the personality of the Prophet SAW. If you study the life of Prophet Eesa A.S, you will not find examples in following him as a husband or a father, on the other hand, there are many examples which show Prophet Muhammad SAW as the most ideal husband, the best father, wise father in law and the most well balanced family man.

The other example is that of Prophet Sulaiman A.S who was a king. You cannot find a role model for a poor man. However, Prophet Muhammad SAW experienced every thing, in poverty he was patient and contented, and in prosperity he was generous and grateful.  In the life of the Prophet SAW we find direction for all sorts of situations; in peace and war, defeat and victory, prosperity and poverty, ease and difficulty and for every experience that a human being can go through.

The perfect model of the beloved Prophet SAW transforms lives. It transformed the life of Abu Bakr, Umar Ibn Al-Khataab, Uthmaan Ibn Afaan, Ali Ibn Abi Talib and all the other companions may Allah be pleased with them. They were the stars around the moon of guidance and mercy. They filled this world with light and they were a great proof of the perfection of the example of the Prophet SAW.   The perfect model of the Prophet SAW continued to transform the lives of all the great Muslim leaders, reformers and scholars who have come before us, and still continues to do so to millions of people around the globe. This is evident in Islam being the fastest growing religion in the world.

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The perfect model of the Prophet SAW was the salvation and solution of all the problems of that time, and the times after him and there is no doubt it is the cure to the challenges we face in this world today. The Prophet SAW is described in Surah Al-Anbiyaa as a mercy to all worlds. He was a true mercy to all around him, if we aim towards being a mercy to Allah’s creation we will indeed solve all problems we face in the modern world starting from global warming, armed conflicts, poverty, immorality, disunity and other challenges which threaten our existence on this earth.

Many Non Muslim personalities spoke highly of the perfect model and character of the Prophet SAW, below are some of the sayings of prominent leaders and writers.

• Mahatma Gandhi said; “I wanted to know the best of the life of one who holds today an undisputed sway over the hearts of millions of mankind.... I became more than ever convinced that it was not the sword that won a place for Islam in those days in the scheme of life. It was the rigid simplicity, the utter self-effacement of the Prophet the scrupulous regard for pledges, his intense devotion to his friends and followers, his intrepidity, his fearlessness, his absolute trust in God and in his own mission. These and not the sword carried everything before them and surmounted every obstacle. When I closed the second volume (of the Prophet's biography), I was sorry there was not more for me to read of that great life. 'Young India,'1924.

• Sir George Bernard Shaw said; “I have studied him - the wonderful man, and in my opinion from being an anti-Christ, he must be called the Savior of Humanity. I believe that if a man like him were to assume the dictatorship of the modern world he would succeed in solving its problems in a way that would bring it the much needed peace and happiness. 'The Genuine Islam,' Vol. 1, No. 8, 1936.

• Michael Hart in his book The 100, A Ranking of the Most Influential Persons In History, New York, 1978 said; “My choice of Muhammad to lead the list of the world’s most influential persons may surprise some readers and may be questioned by others, but he was the only man in history who was supremely successful on both the secular and religious levels…it is probable that the relative influence of Muhammad on Islam has been larger than the combined influence of Jesus Christ and St. Paul on Christianity.....it is this unparalleled combination of secular and religious influence which I feel entitles Muhammad to be considered the most influential single figure in human history.

Oh Allah, we ask you to shower your peace and blessings upon the most beloved Prophet SAW, his family, companions and all those who follow him righteously until the Day of Judgment. Aameen.

by Sheikh Ahmad Abu Ghazaleh

Intro to Hajj

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[الْيَوْمَ أَكْمَلْتُ لَكُمْ دِيْنَكُمْ وَأَتْمَمْتُ عَلَيْكُمْ نِعْمَتِيْ وَرَضِيْتُ لَكُمُ الْإِسْلَامَ دِيْنًا]

"On this day, I have perfected for you your religion, completed My favours upon you and chosen  for you Islam as your way of life." Surah 5, Verse 4

On the day of `Arafah, the year before Sayyiduna Rasoolullah SAW passed away, he delivered his farewell sermon at `Arafah, which combined all the laws and rulings of Islam. Allah SWT revealed the above verse at the same time and the last laws of Hajj also came down.

It is certainly, through Hajj and with Hajj that the Islamic Shari`ah is perfected and the religion completed. A servant can only feel and discover the reality of spirituality during Hajj. That is why Allah SWT says in Surah Al-Hajj, Verse 32:

[وَمَنْ يُّعَظِّمْ شَعَائِرَ اللهِ فَإِنَّهَا مِنْ تَقْوَى الْقُلُوْبِ]

"And whosoever sanctifies the rites of Allah, then indeed it is a sign of the piety of their hearts."

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The Holy Prophet Muhammad SAW is reported to have said:

".اَللّٰهُمَّ حَبِّبْ إِلَيْنَا الْمَدِيْبَةَ كَحُبِّنَا مَكَّةَ أَوْ أَشَدَّ"

"Oh Allah! Make Al-Madinah beloved to us in the same manner that we love Makkah or more intense."

The beautiful city of Al-Madinah Al-Munawwarah is the abode and home of the Most Beloved of Allah, The Holy Prophet SAW. It is the place that his blessed body lies buried, and it is frequently visited by thousands of Muslims every year. Those who go for Umrah and Hajj visit the holy grave of the Beloved Prophet SAW to send salutations upon him and beg for his intercession.

The Glorious Message of Hajj

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All Praise belongs only to Almighty Allah Azza Wajjal Who has blessed some with happiness, and redued others to destitution; Who hath brought some to death, and others to life; Who hath brought some things into existence, and other things He brought to naught; Who hath created life from an emitted clot, and then set Himself apart from His Creation through His Attributes of independence (Ghina) and endued some of His servants with excellence, enriching with His Blessings those who toil and labour, and withholding His rewards from those who are indolent and languid.

May His everlasting Peace and Blessings be upon His Beloved Nabee Muhammad Ibn Abdullah Rahmatul Liel Ala'meen Sallallahoo Alayhi Wasallam. Alhumdoelillah! Once again the Supreme Will of Almighty Allah Subhanahu Wata'ala has brought together the faithful in the home of Tawhid and the abode of Divine Mercy and munificence, summoning them to the Holy Ka'bah. Once again, the celestial call of verse 27 of Surah Al-Hajj is echoed all across the world:

"Proclaim among mankind the Hajj"

This proclamation has overcome the physical as well as the imposed distances that separate the Muslim Ummah from one another, pulling a galaxy of hearts that throb with one faith, Muhabbat, and a single yearning towards the centre of the Unity of Almighty Allah Subhanahu Wata'ala and the unity of the Ummah of His Beloved Nabee Muhammad Sallallahoo Alayhi Wasallam. For many years, pagan ignorance and enmity have endeavoured to cut off this great Islamic family from its roots. It is a miracle of Hajj that the intellectual, emotional, and religious bonds between the Muslim Ummah have remained unbroken and their mutual influences have continued on an ascending course. Although the secrets and mysteries of Hajj are greater than what can be expressed, there are prominent characteristics d to break the mutual bonds of brotherhood based on faith. And, yet, every year, the duty of Hajj has revived the spirit of Tawhid and unity within this ancient noble family. Every year new buds that sprout - in a greater number than the year before, bear the good news of a new spring of religious life, Imaan, and Islamic love and fraternal feelings, thus undoing the work of the enemy.

that are visible to every discerning eye even at a first glance. The Hajj is the only religious rite wherein Almighty Allah Subhanahu Wata'ala has summoned every individual Muslim, that is, everyone who has the means and the ability - to a single location from all over the Doonya, drawing him or her out of the solitude of homes and the places of worship during certain known days, and linking the individuals together in the course of various movements and pauses and collective rites of Ibadah as declared in verse 199 of Surah Al-Baqara:

"Then march on from where the people march on, and pray for Allah's forgiveness. Allah is All-Forgiving, All Compassionate."

In the course of these outward collective rites, the ultimate goal is the remembrance of Almighty Allah Tabaraqa Wata'ala, which is something inward and performed within the innermost recesses of the heart as pointed out to us in verse 28 of Surah Al-Hajj:

"That they may mention Allah's Name on days well known over such beasts of the flock as He has provided them: So eat thereof, and feed the poor."


Each and every act of performing Hajj are clear and eloquent lessons in purposeful, collective, and conscious movements to a Muslim in his or her journey in the orbit of Tawhid and through the arena of life around only one single centre - Almighty Allah Subhanahu Wata'ala. Life in the mirror of Hajj is a perpetual movement, or, rather, a motion involving perpetual becoming towards the Glorious Creator and Sustainer of the heavens and earth. Hajj is a living and everlasting practical lesson which, if learnt intelligently, can direct the conduct of our life in practice and shape it. This great global gathering of the Ummah is held every year so that in its atmosphere of Muhabbat, solidarity and understanding, and the air of Almighty Allah Azza Wajjal's remembrance, every Muslim may find the path and direction through life and then return back to his and her loved ones and homeland.

Year after year others will come and learn, find and return, to speak and to act, to listen, think and contemplate; that, ultimately, the entire Muslim Ummah may attain what Almighty Allah's Beloved - Rahmathul Liel Ala'meen Sallallahoo Alayhi Wasallam and the Din of Al Islam have taught them: to always keep in one's view the great panorama of the life of the Ummah of Islam. This great panorama of the life of the Ummah of Islam manifests itself so much so that one is able to see beyond national, racial, ethnic, and tribal frontiers; to examine the depths of one's own existence and to learn the conduct, the path and the direction of a life worthy of a Muh'min; and to do all this in the light of the remembrance of our Glorious Creator and Sustainer.

DSC0000147This is the refreshing spring of consciousness that in Hajj, every year gushes forth in the Divine Sanctuary for the benefit of the great multitude of Hujjaj, and this plenteous and perpetual source of guidance can satiate everyone who open their hearts and minds to receive its limpid abundance. Hajj is a manifestation of the unity and solidarity of Muslims. The fact that Almighty Allah Subhanahu Wata'ala has called all Muslims to assemble at a certain place at a certain time and to perform certain rites and movements that symbolize coexistence, harmony and discipline, and to assemble together for several days and nights, its first salient impact is to infuse each one of them with a feeling of love, solidarity and communal unity.

The annual Hajj with its sacred rites, rituals and places, must revive the spirit of unity, oneness and greatness in all the Muslims of the world and forge a single united Ummah out of the different nations and tribes and then lead that single united Ummah into the secure valley of exclusive service of Almighty Allah Subhanahu Wata'ala and prepare the ground for the realization of the words of our Glorious Creator and Sustainer in verse 92 of Surah Al-Anbiyaa:

"Verily, this Ummah of yours is a single Ummah and I am your Lord, so serve and worship Me."

The Hajj of Nabee Ebrahim Alayhis Salatu Wasallam is the same as the Hajj of our Beloved Nabee Muhammad Sallallahoo Alayhi Wasallam wherein the movement of Tawhid and unity is the driving spirit of all the rites and ceremonies. It is a Hajj that is a source of Baraka'h and guidance and is the main support of the life and strength of the one single united Ummah. It is a Hajj that possesses abundant benefits and is rich with the remembrance of Almighty Allah Subhanahu Wata'ala, a Hajj wherein the Muslim nations get a concrete feeling of being part of a united world-wide Muslim Ummah and are relieved from feelings of weakness, impotence and self-alienation through an invigorating sense of Muhabbat, brotherhood and fraternal closeness with other nations.

There have been attempts, in the past as well as in the present era, to project the Hajj as a religious duty on an individual character, wherein everyone's concern is his or her own worship and prayer, to say nothing of those victims of ignorance and neglect who view the Hajj as a kind of commercial and sight-seeing trip. However, with its salient features, which are not to be found in any other Islamic rite, the Hajj is far above the narrow conceptions of the former and the stale and erroneous notions of the latter group.The true meaning of Hajj is to discover the significance and worth of the great duty to the House of Almighty Allah Azza Wajjal. The Hajj is a manifestation of Tawhid (monotheism) and the Ka'bah is the home of Tawhid.

The repetitive mention of 'remembrance of Allah' (Dhik'rullah) in the noble verses related to Hajj, indicates the presence in this Sanctuary should have the blessed result of wiping out the traces of every agent aside from Almighty Allah Rabbul Ala'meen from the mind and conduct of Muslims. The traces of the various forms of Shirk must be wiped out from their life. In its surroundings, the axis and focus of all movement is Almighty Allah Subhanahu Wata'ala. The Tawaf around the Holy Ka'bah, the Sa'ee between Safa and Marwa, the (Rami) pelting of Shaythaan at the Jamarats, the Wuqoof at Arafat and all other Divine rites involved in the Hajj - each of them symbolizes, in its own way, attraction towards none other than Almighty Allah Rabbul Ala'meen.

This is the sincere creed of our beloved father Nabee Ebrahim Alayhi Salatu Wasallam the great idol breaker and herald of Tawhid who stands at the apex of history. Shirk does not always have a single form. The idols are not always images of stone, wood and metal. The Baitullah and the Hajj must serve to identify and negate Shirk in its specific contemporary forms in all ages as well as identify the idols and false deities and their specific manifestations. Today, of course, the idols of Lat, Manat and Uzza are no longer there, but their place has been taken by the more dangerous idols of imperialist power and wealth and the idols of pagan, domineering, and anti-Islamic systems whose influence fills the entire atmosphere of the life of Muslims all over the world.

The Hajj and the great congregation around the House of Tawhid should negate these manifestations of Shirk and warn the Muslims against them. The Hajj in this clear and unambiguous sense has been considered the highest platform for the declaration of Bara'ah with the Musrikin and it is the day of the Greater Hajj (Day of Arafat) that has been assigned by Almighty Allah Subhanahu Wata'ala for the declaration of Bara'ah with the Mushrikin on His Own behalf and that of His Beloved Nabee Sallallahoo Alayhi Wasallam for Almighty Allah has made this crystal clear in verse 3 of Surah At-Tauba:

"And an announcement from Allah and His Messenger, to the people

(assembled) on the Day of the Great Pilgrimage, - that Allah and His

Messenger dissolve (treaty) obligations with the pagans. If you repent,

that will be better for you; but if you turn your backs, know that you

cannot frustrate Allah. And give thou good tidings to the unbelievers

of a painful punishment."

The call of Bara'ah that the Hujjaj make during Hajj is a call for the condemnation of imperialism and its agents who, regrettably, exercise a powerful influence over Muslim countries. By imposing a pagan culture, polity and way of life over Muslim societies, they have shattered the practical basis of Tawhid in the life of Muslims and involved them with the worship of non-god. Their allegiance to Tawhid is purely a verbal and nominal one and there is no trace of the spirit of Tawhid in their lives. The mysteries and secrets underlying Hajj are much more than what I have indicated here, and reflection on these secrets, all of which are meant to revive the Islamic personality of the Muslim individual and society - and to revive the struggle against the agents hostile to it, opens up a new horizon before the pilgrim and draws him or her towards a world of relentless effort and dynamism.

The primary duty of each and ever Hujjaj is to reflect upon these secrets and to exchange views with other Muslims from all over the world in order to find clues and solutions to solving problems facing and confronting the global Muslim Ummah. Is it not the purpose of Islam and its luminous laws to administer and guide the material and spiritual affairs of human life? Is it not the case that religiosity and politics are inextricably united in the Islamic ethos? Today when the Muslim Ummah are once again awakening and rising up to the task of struggling for the sake of Almighty Allah Subhanahu Wata'ala, the aroma of liberty, independence and return to Islam and to the Most Holy and Glorious Qur'an and to the Sunnah of Almighty Allah's Beloved Nabee Sallallahoo Alayhi Wasallam has filled the atmosphere in many Islamic countries.

It is essential, more than ever before, that we, as a united Ummah, strenghten our bonds with our luminous and miraculous past, with the first era of Islamic struggle and Qiyam, Ruku and Sujood for the sake of none other than our Glorious Creator - Almighty Allah Subhanahu Wata'ala. We must begin to examine the tools that were created for us. As Muslims, we must become aware of other people defining for us our reality. We must be able to detach ourselves from man-made concepts of right and wrong, good and evil, individuality and equality. In order to see our problem objectively, and define our struggle, we must elevate our consciousness above the temporal concepts found in man-made documents.

Beloved Ummah of Almighty Allah's Beloved! Only by becoming aware of the Sacred Source of Legislation can we understand for what goals we should be struggling. As the 'favoured Ummah' - let us seek to implement Divine Justice. Let us struggle for what Almighty Allah Azza Wajjal has commanded. That, my most beloved brothers and sisters in Islam is our purpose in life. That is the true reality. And Almighty Allah knows best.

Imam Abdul Hameed

Hajj: The perfection of Islam

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[الْيَوْمَ أَكْمَلْتُ لَكُمْ دِيْنَكُمْ وَأَتْمَمْتُ عَلَيْكُمْ نِعْمَتِيْ وَرَضِيْتُ لَكُمُ الْإِسْلَامَ دِيْنًا]

"On this day, I have perfected for you your religion, completed My favours upon you and chosen  for you Islam as your way of life." Surah 5, Verse 4

On the day of `Arafah, the year before Sayyiduna Rasoolullah SAW passed away, he delivered his farewell sermon at `Arafah, which combined all the laws and rulings of Islam. Allah SWT revealed the above verse at the same time and the last laws of Hajj also came down.

It is certainly, through Hajj and with Hajj that the Islamic Shari`ah is perfected and the religion completed. A servant can only feel and discover the reality of spirituality during Hajj. That is why Allah SWT says in Surah Al-Hajj, Verse 32:

[وَمَنْ يُّعَظِّمْ شَعَائِرَ اللهِ فَإِنَّهَا مِنْ تَقْوَى الْقُلُوْبِ]

"And whosoever sanctifies the rites of Allah, then indeed it is a sign of the piety of their hearts."

 

Sayyiduna Abu Hurayrah RA reports that Rasoolullah SAW said:

[مَنْ حَجَّ فَلَمْ يَرْفُثْ وَلَمْ يَفْسُقْ رَجَعَ كَيَوْمَ وَلَدَتْهُ أُمَّهٗ]

"Whosoever performs Hajj and does not behave in an obscene manner nor does he leave the obedience of Allah, he returns like he was on the day when his mother gave birth to him." Agreed upon by both Imams Al-Bukhari and Muslim RA.

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This means that he does not say or do anything contrary to the commands of Allah SWT and His Beloved Prophet SAW, nor does he commit any sin or disobey Allah SWT. If he fulfils this, then he returns from his Hajj as pure as a new born baby, without any sins and with a clean slate. It is noteworthy here that this is only for the minor sins; as he has to seek pardon from Allah SWT for the major sins and from his fellow man for any wrongs he may have done to that person.

Imam Al-Bukhari RA also narrates on the authority of Sayyidah `Aa-ishah RA, the Mother of the Believers that she said:

يَا رَسُوْلَ اللهِ، نَرَى الْجِهَادَ أَفْضَلَ الْأَعْمَالِ، أَفَلَا نُجَاهِدُ؟ قَالَ: لَا، لٰكِنَّ أَفْضَلَ الْجِهَادِ ]

 

[حَجٌّ مَبْرُوْرٌ

"Oh Messenger of Allah; we consider Jihaad as the best of deeds, should we not carry out Jihaad? He replied: No; but the best Jihaad is a Hajj that is accepted by Allah."

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In order for a Hajj to be righteous and accepted, it has to be entirely free from sin. When Imam Al-Hasan RA was enquired about a Hajj that is accepted he replied: "For a servant to return turning away from the life of this world, not attached to it, and desiring only the Hereafter." This is the meaning of the hadeeth:

 

كُنْ فِي الدُّنْيَا كَأَنَّكَ غَرِيْبٌ ]

[أَوْ عَابِرُ سَبِيْلٍ

 

"Live in this world as if you are a stranger or just someone passing through."

Narrated by Imam Al-Bukhari on the authority of Sayyiduna `Abdullah Ibn `Umar RA.

Indeed, Sayyiduna `Abdullah Ibn `Umar RA used to say: "When you go to sleep at night then do not wait for the morning, and when you get up in the morning then do not wait for the evening. And take from your health for your sickness and from your life for your death."

Imam Ahmad Ibn Hajar Al-`Asqalani RA states that the stranger in this world is the one who does not have a place from which he seeks refuge or tranquillity; and the one passing through always goes from one place to another. Therefore, we have to continue walking forwards in our journey to Allah SWT and not delay or stop, otherwise we will perish."

Furthermore, life is not free of health and sickness, and thus the one who is healthy should benefit from it, as he will not know the value of that health until he loses it. Sayyiduna `Abdullah Ibn `Abbaas RA reports that Rasoolullah SAW said:

 

اِغْتَنِمْ خَمْسًا قَبْلَ خَمْسٍ: شَبَابَكَ قَبْلَ هَرَمِكَ، وَصِحَّتَكَ قَبْلَ سَقَمِكَ، وَغِنَاكَ قَبْلَ فَقْرِكَ]

[وَفِرَاغَكَ قَبْلَ شُغُلِكَ، وَحَيَاتِكَ قَبْلَ مَوْتِكَ

"Take benefit from five things before five things: Your youth before your old age, your health before you are ill, your wealth before you are in poverty, your free time before you are occupied, and your life before your death." - Narrated by Imam Al-Haakim in Al-Mustadrak.

The Perfection of Islam

"On this day, I have perfected for you your religion, completed My favours upon you and chosen  for you Islam as your way of life." Surah 5, Verse 4

The Everlasting Mercy of the Noble Prophet Muhammad (SAW)

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All praise is due to Allah, Lord of the worlds, and peace and blessings upon the most noble of His prophets, Nabee Muhammad (SAW), his family, his companions and upon everyone who follows them with goodness until the Day of Judgement.

Allah’s purpose for the creation of mankind is that man should worship Him. To assist mankind in this regard Allah sent His prophets as a guide and a form of mercy unto humanity. All the prophets of Allah possessed bravery and determination, but on Muhammad (saw) Allah bestowed the greatest qualities that would make him a worthy leader. Prophet Muhammad (saw) is the prime of Allah’s servants, the best of His creation and the dearest of his servants towards Him.

Allah chose for Muhammad (saw) some of His own attributes thus distinguishing him from the other prophets. Allah named the Noble Prophet as ‘the Merciful’ when he said: ‘ A messenger has indeed come to you, from amongst yourselves. It grieves him that you should suffer, he is very anxious over you and to the believers he is most Kind and Merciful.’

Allah has an abundance of mercy that is specifically for the believers, and Allah has bestowed on the Prophet (saw) a great blessing by making him a mercy unto mankind and creation. Allah says: ‘And We have not sent you but as a mercy to all the worlds.’ ‘The worlds’ refers to man, Jinn, animals, trees, stones and the entire universe; therefore what an honour for Nabee Muhammad (saw)! This characteristic of mercy became manifested in the Prophet (saw) until it dominated his being and led him to excel to the greatest level of excellence. Thus Nabee Muhammad (saw) became a leader to man, a perfect example, a Guide and the greatest messenger to mankind.

This mercy that Allah had placed in the character of the Prophet (saw) manifested itself and impacted on all aspects of his life; it affected his interactions with not only his family and companions, but his enemies and all of creation as well. A few such examples will now be illustrated.

The Mercy of the Prophet (saw) to the Believers

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This mercy was manifested in his dealings with the believing servants of Allah. Prophet Muhammad (saw) was like a ray of grace, kindness and thoughtfulness. His living example of excellence in all facets of life led to the believers trusting him and accepting his message as the final prophet of Allah. This meant that the Prophet (saw) was able to lead them to worship Allah as he should rightfully be worshipped. Through this mercy the Muslims became sincerely affectionate among themselves; they had mercy on each other and took each other as brothers. Therefore, some of the believers were a mercy for others like one body: if one part of the body is injured, the rest of it becomes unstable/imbalanced with pain and fever. Through the abundance of Allah’s mercy, the believers became the most merciful of people over themselves and their families; they managed the harm that the disbelievers inflicted upon them, and bore with patience the insolence of people as a mercy to them.

The Mercy of the Prophet (saw) to all of Mankind

The Prophet’s mercy was not limited to the companions; it encompassed all people. When Allah sent the Angel of the Mountains to crush the mountain over the disbelievers, the prophet interceded by saying: ‘No, perhaps Allah will bring out from their offspring who will worship Allah as One.’ He did not want their destruction and ruin even though they had injured and insulted him and his companions. Such was the mercy of Prophet Muhammad (saw)! The Prophet said to the people: ‘The Most Gracious will have mercy on those who have mercy, so have mercy for those on the earth, and the One in the heavens will have mercy on you.’ The Prophet is also reported to have said: ‘Whoever does not have mercy, will not be shown mercy.’ This is a general call to all humankind: the believer and the disbeliever, male and female, the young and the elderly. Nabee Muhammad (saw) is calling out to all people that this is the mercy of Allah so we should accept it properly and not let it go to waste, else our spiritual side will be wasted.

The Mercy of the Prophet to Small Children

It is narrated that the Prophet Muhammad (saw) was joking with the small children and kissing them while his companions were around and observing him. A man from the Bedouins went to the Prophet (saw) and said: ‘It is strange of you; you are joking with children and kissing them. I have ten children, and I have not kissed one of them!’ The Prophet replied: What can I do for you while Allah has certainly removed mercy from your heart?’ From this it can be concluded that great emphasis was placed on treating children with love, kindness and compassion, because they are the adults of the future and in turn would continue the cycle of love and mercy.

The Mercy of the Prophet (saw) to the Jinn

The Prophet Muhammad (saw) was sent as a messenger to the world of man and jinn; and just as he was a mercy to mankind he was a mercy to the jinns as well. The Prophet (saw) did not harm the jinns, nor did he cause them grief. The prophet (saw) advised his companions to fulfil the needs of the jinn by instructing them to not ‘clean yourselves with bones or dung, for indeed, it is the food of your brothers the Jinn.’

The Prophet (saw) as a Mercy to the Animals

The Prophet Muhammad (saw) came to mankind with a religion that says to them ‘There is not a thing, except that it glorifies His praise.’ This implies that everything in the universe praises Allah, including the animals. The Prophet (saw) admonished people that they should treat animals with kindness and mercy, as this was a means of pleasing the Almighty, and a means of showing gratitude to Him for having provided animals as a form of sustenance to man. It is narrated that a woman entered the fire of jahannam for not feeding a starving and thirsty cat, while a man was granted jannah for climbing down a well to get water for a thirsty dog. Thus the Prophet (saw), through his example and his teachings was a mercy unto the animals.

The Prophet as a Mercy to the Trees and Stones

The Prophet Muhammad (saw) was as merciful to the trees and stones as he was to any other creation. He used to advise his soldiers who were going to battle to not unnecessarily cut down a tree or destroy a nest. It is also narrated that before a mimbar was built for him, the Prophet (saw) would place his hand on the trunk of a cut date palm while he was lecturing. As soon as the mimbar was ready and the Prophet (saw) began using it, the trunk began to cry like a small child. When the Prophet (saw) heard it, he descended from the mimbar, placed his compassionate hand on it and did not take his hand away until the trunk calmed down. This was a great act of kindness and mercy

The Prophet Muhammad (saw) was indeed a distinguished person with an exemplary character. He was honoured with the Almighty’s attribute of mercy for the benefit of mankind and all of Allah’s creation. With this mercy

the Prophet (saw) was able to lead mankind to becoming more tolerant, more caring, more compassionate and more loving. We pray to Allah that all His servants will have mercy on each other, and through this attribute of mercy we become His dearest servants, Ameen.

Adapted from, Dr Jamaal Abu Hassaan, Lecturer of Uloomul Qur’aan and Tafseer, Zarqa Private University, Jordan. January 2007

 

Laylatul Qadr Programme 1436

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The Events Leading up to Laylatul Qadr - the Night of Revelation
Laylatul Qadr Programme at Habibia Soofie Masjid
 
 
Allah Ta'ala had sent many Anbiya to the Ahle Kitaab. Nabi ibraheem, Nabi Ishaaq, Nabi Dawood Nabi Moosa Nabi Eesa and many others. But all of them told them: the final Messenger of Allah will come with Final Book of Allah to Makkah. Nabi Ibraheem told them I am Khaleelullah, the friend of Allah, but Habeebullah, the Beloved of Allah will come with Kitaabullah, the Book of Allah to Makkah. Nabi Moosa said I am Kaleemullah, but Habeebullah ! he will come with the Book of Allah to Makkah. Nabi Eesaa told them I am RoohullH, but Habeebullah! He will come to Makkah, with the book of Allah and then emigrate to Madinah.  
All of their Prophets, all of their Anbiya told them: The Final Messenger is coming. Allah Ta'aala is going to send His Beloved, His greatest Nabi, Sayyidina Muhummud sallAllahu alayhi wasallam to Makkah and Allah will reveal to him the final Revelation, the Book of Allah, the Book of Salvation.
So groups of believers, Mu'mins from amongst the Ahl Kitaab emigrated to Makkah. 
Amongst them was Waraqah bin Noufal. He was a great scholar, a great Aabid. He translated the Tawrah into Arabic. He was known as the Shaykh al Kabeer of Makkah. The Grand Shaykh of Makkah. Waraqah and his friends when they would see the Makkan people having their Shirk festivals, they would say what is this.  This is not the Deen of Nabi Ibraheem. 
Waraqah patiently waited. He made his Ibadah and he patiently awaited the Final Rasool and the Final Book Of Allah. Waraqah would even go to the cave of Hira and make Ibaadat alone in this cave. 
Everyday his sister would see Hadrath Abdullah, the blessed father of Nabi sallAllahu alayhi wasallam. She would ask him to marry her, so that she can be the mother of his child. And each day Hadrath Abdullah would refuse. Then Hadrath Abdullah married Bibi Aaminah. The next day Waraqah's sister did not ask to marry Hadrath Abdullah. So he asked her, each day you ask me for marriage, but today you do not. She replied, that Noor which I perceived on your forehead is not there anymore. This was the effect of Nabi sallAllahu alayhi wasallams Noor on his fathers face. Now that Noor entered the womb of Bibi Aamina and in this way the Final Nabi Sayyidina Muhummud sallAllahu alayhi wasallam was born. 
Twenty five years later, Waraqah's cousin, Bibi Khadija who was a successful businesswoman, asked Nabi sallAllahu alayhi wasallam to take a caravan of goods to Syria and conduct business on her behalf. Nabi sallAllahu alayhi wasallam went on this trip, and returned. The trip was very successful. 
Then those who were on the trip told Bibi Khadija that they had seen very extraordinary things on this trip. This trip was special. When they arrived in Syria, A hermit, a Sufi type of a person came to them. Asked them about Nabi sallAllahu alayhi wasallam. Then he asked them which city do they come from. They replied Makkah. The hermit told them Verily this person is Allah's Nabi. 
Whilst they were returning to Makkah,  the heat of the Arabian Sun was very intense. Bibi Khadija's workers explained that in the midst of the intense Arabian Heat, two angels were shading Nabi sallAllahu alayhi wasallam.  Yes they withnessed two angels shading the Nabi. My dear friends the truth is, as Seerat bin Hishaam explains, whenever Nabi sallAllahu alayhi wasallam would leave Makkah Jibreel Alayhis salaam would accompany him. Jibreel alayhis salaam was his companion. He was no stranger to Nabi sallAllahu Alayhi wasallam. 
Bibi Khadija heard all this, and she went to her cousin Waraqah bin Noufal. She told Waraqah about this miracle. Waraqah said, Khadija! this is the Final Prophet. This is the Final Prophet. Bibi Khadija asked Waraqa to make a proposal of marriage on her behalf. Remember! Waraqah's sister had proposed several times to Hadrath Abdullah, the father of Nabi sallAllahu alayhi wasallam but he refused. Now Bibi Khadijah was proposing to the Nabi himself. Nabi sallAllahu alayhi wasallam accepted and he made Nikah to Bibi Khadija. 
Nabi sallAllahu alayhi wasallam is Allah's Habeeb, Allah's Beloved and so he enjoyed making Allah's Ibadat. He made Ibadat to such an extent that preferred to sometimes be alone in his Ibaadat. 
For this purpose, Nabi sallAllahu alayhi wasallam left Makkah, he left the mundaneness of a city. He set for the peaceful mountains to make his Ibadat there, a month at a time. Tafseer Roohul Bayaan explains, The first time that Nabi sallAllahu wasallam went out for this seclusion, the mountain that he first approached declined to host the Nabi. 
The mountain called out, Ya RasoolAllah, please alight. I fear that you may become Shaheed on my back. I fear that you may be martyred on me. 
The mountain knew that soon an incident was to happen in Nabi sallAllahu alayhi wasallam's life. An incident so powerful that a mountain could crumble. 
Another mountain, Jablun Noor called out ilayya Ya Rasool, ilayya Ya Rasool. Come to me Oh Rasool. Come to me Oh Messenger. In Jablun Noor is the cave of Hira. Nabi sallAllahu alayhi wasallam would now come to this cave. He would carry a little food with him and spend a month in this cave. Here he would make Allah Ta'aala's Ibadat and he would make Ziyarat of the distant Kaaba. Then when he would return home, he would first go to the Kaba, make Tawaaf of the Kaaba then return home. 
This continued and when Nabi sallAllahu alayhi wasallam passed the age of 36, Allah Ta'ala began sending an Angel to Nabi sallAllahu alayhi wasallam.  This angel was Hadrath Israfeel Alayhis Salaam. The Hadith books of Biography, Imam Bayhaqi in his Dalaailin Nabuwwa, Imam ibn Jareer in his Tareekh Tabari and Imam Qastalani in his Mawahibul Ladunya narrate that Angel Israfeel Alayhis salaam continued coming to Nabi sallAllahu alayhi wasallam for a period of three years. He would come with messages from Allah Ta'aala and this three years served as a preparation for a very great revelation to come by way of the Quran. 
Imam Qastalani explains that Hazrath Israfeel alayhis Salaam coming with messages from Allah was the first phase of Wahi. Next came the second phase of Wahi. 
Sayyidah Ayesha Siddeeqa radi Allahu anha explains that the revelation of the Quran did not begin suddenly before it was a phase of Ru'yatus Saadiqa - a vision of Reality. 
Ru'yatus Saadiqa is the true visions that the Anbiya (Prophets) have whilst asleep. Please don't think that the sleep of the Anbiya is like our sleep. No, no. Nabi sallAllahu alayhi wasallam clarifies that when the Anbiya sleep, their hearts are Awake. Friends whilst the Anbiya sleep and have Ru'yatus Saadiqa, in reality they receive revelation from Allah Ta'aala.  
When Nabi Ibraheem alayhis salaam was instructed to sacrifice his son, Nabi Ismail alayhis salaam, this instruction came whilst he was sleeping in Ru'yatus Saadiqa. Imam Shafee rahmatullahi alayhi explains that when Nabi Ibrahim alayhis salaam got this instruction in his dream, in his Ru'yatus Saadiqa, he saw Allah Ta'aala in his Ru'yatus Saadiqa and Allah Ta'aal instructed him to do this sacrifice.  Yes Imam Bayhaqi has recorded this from Imam Shafee rahmatullahi alayhima. 
Thus when the Anbiya have the True Vision, the Ru'yatus Saadiqa, they receive revelation from Allah. 
So during this second phase of Wahi, Nabi sallAllahu alayhi wasallam would have Ru'yatus Saadiqa and during this Allah Ta'ala would reveal whatever He wished to, to His Beloved. 
Nabi sallAllahu alayhi wasallam continued to spend some amount of time at the cave of Hira. Then, at the age of 40, .... Friends, now remember that before this for three years angel Israfeel alayhis salaam came to Nabi sallAllahu alayhi wasallam with revelation from Allah Ta'aala. Then for six months the next phase of revelation began. In this second phase Nabi sallAllahu alayhi wasallam would have true Prophetic dream - Ru'yatus Saadiqa wherein he would see Allah Ta'aala and Allah Ta'aala would speak to Him as He pleased. Then at the age of forty the next phase of Wahi commenced. This is the most famous phase of Wahi. 
One of the nights of Shahru Ramadaan, whilst Nabi sallAllahu alayhi wasallam was in the cave of Hira, Angel Jibreel alayhis salaam came to Nabi salAllahu alayhi wasallam. Jibreel alayhis salaam said to RasoolAllah sallAllahu Alayhi wasallam, Read. To which RasoolAllah sallAllahu Alayhi wasallam said I am not at (the state) of Qaari. Jibreel alayhis salaam then embraced RasoolAllah sallAllahu Alayhi wasallam very tightly. Jibreel alayhis salaam again said Read, to which RasoolAllah sallAllahu Alayhi wasallam replied I am not at (the state) of Qaari. This happened three times and on the fourth time RasoolAllah sallAllahu Alayhi wasallam recited the first part of Surah Iqra Bismi Rabbik. 
This was the first revelation of the Quran. It was the start of the third and most excellent phase of revelation. 
RasoolAllah sallAllahu Alayhi wasallam went home and said to Sayyidah Khadija that just as he had seen in his dream, the angel had visited him and he narrated the incident of the revelation. The Quran continued to be revealed to RasoolAllah sallAllahu Alayhi wasallam over the next 20 years until it was completed. 
This, friends is a description of the environment and the circumstances in which Allah Ta'aala revealed the Quran to His Beloved sallAllahu Alayhi wasallam. 
This incident of the revelation of the Quran was very significant and special. It changed the course of man's life on earth. It opened a new, fresh leaf in the history of creation. It is the night in which the Beloved of Allah came into direct closeness with the Speech of Allah Taala. 
Islam remembers this event as Laylatul Qadr. Allah Ta'aala has blessed that night each year and He sends down angels who on this night convey to the worshipping believers, Salaam from your Rabb. 
Join millions of Muslims as they commemorate this event, this night, Laylatul Qadr, with various types of Ibadah; Nafl Salah, recitation of Quran, recitation of Durood, etc.
 
 
Courtesy of Islam South Africa
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