An incident of Mawlana Thanwi (rahimahullah) – Not putting any creature in difficulty

unnamed (12)Always stay clear of causing distress to the heart of another being as this will lead to loss of blessings in your life.

Hazrat Thanwi (rahimahullah) writes about an incident where his wife needed to attend a gathering at her relatives. His wife requested from him to feed the fowls that she had in her care, to throw grain for them and provide fresh water as was her daily habit. Hazrat Thanwi (rahimahullah) agreed to see to it that the birds will get their daily feed. On the appointed day, his wife left. Now, work that a person is not used to doing as a part of his daily schedule easily slips his mind. Hazrat Thanwi (rahimahullah) therefore started his days’ work, making Wudu (ablution) and then sitting to write Tafsir-Bayanul-Quran. While sitting, Hazrat says: “My thoughts would just not flow!” After sitting like this for a while, Hazrat thought to himself that perhaps he had committed a sin which is blocking him from continuing his work and therefore he should make Istighfar (seek forgiveness). So Hazrat sat and made Istighfar for some time, sincerely asking Allah to forgive this sin which was driving away his knowledge. Hazrat says: “After making Istighfar for half an hour, I suddenly got the realisation that my wife had asked me to feed grain to the fowls and supply them with fresh water and I had slipped up in doing this. I stopped my writing and went home, only to find the fowls hungry and thirsty. Almost an hour had passed since their usual feeding time. I placed the grain and water and the fowls ate to their satisfaction. I then returned to my place of writing and immediately Almighty Allah put the details of the Tafsir in my mind.”

Subhanallah! By causing discomfort to a fowl which is such a small creature, Allah withheld the details of the Tafsir from his mind, yet we cause discomfort to the servants of Allah and expect to be blessed with divine help and guidance. A (true) Muslim is one from whose tongue and hands the next Muslim is safe. We must always be on guard that through our actions the heart of another is not being distressed. May Almighty Allah grant us the understanding.

From a lecture titled: Dil-Azari by Shaykh Zulfiqar Ahmad Naqshbandi (may Allah elevate him). Download from tasawwuf.org

If Rasheed Ahmed doesn’t pick up their shoes, what else should he do?

images-38Hazrat Maulana Rasheed Ahmed Gangohi (Rahimahullah) would treat his students with great love and affection. Once it suddenly started raining while he was imparting a lesson to his students sitting in the compound of the Masjid. In order to prevent their books from getting wet in the rain, the students ran towards their rooms leaving their shoes behind. Hazrat Gangohi (Rahimahullah) spread a piece of cloth on the ground, placed the shoes of all his students on it, and carried the bundle on his head to the students. When the students saw this, they were amazed and astonished and said, “Why did you do so, we would have collected our shoes ourselves”. Hazrat replied, “The people who study قال الله (what Almighty Allah said i.e. The Quran) and قال الرسول (what the Blessed Prophet SallalahuAlayhiWaSallam said i.e. The Hadith), if Rasheed Ahmed doesn’t pick up their shoes, what else should he do?”

Source: Ba-Adab-Ba-Naseeb, Etiquette 2: How a teacher should be kind to his students and consider them as his sons. By Shaykh Zulfiqar Ahmad Naqshbandi (D.B)

Inculcating the habit of making Salaam and being thankful in children

picsart_12-28-08-40-37(From the lectures of Shaykh Zulfiqar Ahmad Naqshbandi D.B)

Allah’s Messenger (Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) said:

Afshus-Salaama-Baynakum.

Spread salaam amongst yourselves. (Muslim)

Get little children into the habit of making salaam with both hands whenever they greet someone. Get them into the habit of making Salaam as much as possible. Inculcate this culture in your communities. This boosts the child’s confidence and frees him of inhibitions. He isn’t fearful in the company of other people because he is used to making Salaam. The proper method of making Salaam should be taught to the child. This creates confidence in the child and removes cowardice and fear from his heart.

In the same manner, the child should be taught to be grateful to others from a small age. As soon as he reaches the age of understanding, explain to him that whenever someone does him a favour, he must thank him/her. Inculcate the habit of thanking others into the child from a young age. When the child gets into the habit of thanking people, he will automatically learn to thank Allah Ta’ala as well.

Allah’s Messenger (Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) said:

Man-Lam-Yashkurin-Naasa-Lam-Yashkurillaah.

He who does not thank people has not thanked Allah. (Ahmad)

It is amazing how even though Allah Ta’ala has ordered us to be thankful on so many occasions, there are very few mothers who teach their children the words of gratitude. “Jazakumullah”, “Jazakallahu Khayran”, teach these words to your children so that they know the Sunnah way of showing gratitude. This practice was supposed to be ours but today the non-Muslims have adopted it.

A strange story regarding the teaching of gratitude.

This humble servant was on a flight from Paris to New York in 1997. When I took my seat in the aircraft, a French lady with her three or four year old daughter came and set on the seat next to mine. There were only three seats, so the mother sat on one, the daughter on the next one and this humble servant sat on the last seat. This humble servant has a habit of taking a kitab to read on flights. This helps in lowering the gaze and passing time. For these reasons, this humble servant began reading a kitab. After a while, an airhostess arrived to serve food. This humble servant declined the offer because he was not sure about the Halal status of the food. I normally take my own packed food with me on flights, and if I do not have my own food with me, I bear the hunger and partake of something when arriving at my destination.

Anyway, the French lady took some food and began feeding her daughter and at the same time partaking from it herself. Now, because she was sitting on the next seat, even though I was reading my kitab and not paying attention to her, I could make out what she was doing by her movements. She put a morsel of food in the girl’s mouth and after she had eaten it, the lady said, “Say Thank You”. Her daughter replied, “Thank You”. She then put another morsel in the girl’s mouth and made her say Thank You again. After putting each morsel of food in her daughter’s mouth, the lady would make the girl say ‘Thank You’. According to my estimation, the lady made her daughter say the words ‘Thank You’ thirty six (36) times during the course of the meal.

I noted with amazement, that this habit of showing gratitude would surely become part of this child’s character and she will be thankful to everyone for the rest of her life. This is an Islamic habit but alas, our Muslim daughters have forgotten it and the non-Muslims have adopted it. This is why we should teach children these habits from childhood. Inculcate the habit of making salaam and showing gratitude in our children. When a mother does not teach the child to be grateful, when he grows up he doesn’t show gratitude to his parents or his siblings and some are so ill-mannered that they are not grateful to Allah Ta’ala for his bounties as well.

Whose mistake was this? It was the mother’s fault for not teaching her child to be grateful when he/she was small.

Whenever you give your child something; feed him food, make him wear his clothes or do anything for him, tell your child to say “Jazakallahu Khayran/May Allah reward you well”. This is a good habit and must be inculcated in children.

Wisdom behind straightening the rows in Salaah

imagesThe heart cells are unique in the way that they are the only cells in the body to pulsate (beat rhythmically). If a single heart cell is placed on a slide under a microscope, it will beat for a short while, but will soon lose its rhythm. If two cells are placed on a slide at a far distance, they will also die after a short time of beating without rhythm. However, if two heart cells are put close together on a slide, surprisingly they start beating in synchrony and do not die. The reason the two cells beat in synchrony is because when cells in the heart pulsate in unity, they produce electrical energy, which forms an electromagnetic field. When the two heart cells synchronize, they strengthen each other and start to beat in unity. This phenomenon can be observed at a macroscopic level as well. When people are in close proximity in a room, their hearts start to beat with the same rhythm. Even their breathing pattern synchronizes. If we ponder over this above-mentioned research, we understand the wisdom behind the stressed-upon commandment of the Prophet of Allah, Muhammad (Sallallahu Alayhi wa Sallam) who instructed his followers to straighten the rows in the congregational Salaah (prayers). Some narrations follow below wherein the importance of straightening the rows is emphasized:

1. Narrated from Anas ibn Malik (Radiyallahu Anhu) that the Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi wa Sallam) said: “Straighten your rows, for straightening the rows is part of perfecting Salaah (prayer).” (Bukhari)

2. Narrated from Ibn Mas’ood (Radiyallahu Anhu) that Allah’s Messenger (Sallallahu Alayhi wa Sallam) used to touch our shoulders when we were praying and he would say “Make the rows straight and do not differ, lest your hearts differ.” (Muslim)

3. Narrated that Nu’maan bin Basheer (Radiyallahu Anhu) said: “The Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu Alayhi wa Sallam) used to straighten our rows as if he was straightening the shaft of an arrow, until he saw that we had learned it. Then he came out one day and was about to say the Takbeer, when he noticed a man whose chest was sticking out of the row. He said: “Slaves of Allah! Make your rows straight or Allah will cause discord among you.” (Bukhari and Muslim)

The heart generates a very strong electromagnetic field that can be measured with special instruments from a distance of up to ten feet away. When people are in close proximity, the electromagnetic energy produced by their hearts is exchanged between them and this energy can be detected by sensitive instruments. The hearts also generate waves when they beat and this means that all the hearts start to be affected by the waves generated by the strongest heart (that of the leader, etc.) and start to beat in the same rhythm as the strongest heart.

When Muslims are praying behind one Imam (leader) and they straighten their rows, as a result their hearts become synchronized. Their hearts beat in unity and thus their hearts are strengthened. It is also for this reason that the power of joint worship is recognized in Islam.

The old adage which states that UNITY IS STRENGTH, is always true and the behaviour of the heart cells beating in unity testifies to this fact. The Khalif, Umar ibn Al Khattab (Radiyallahu Anhu) said: “There is no Islam without a Jama’ah (congregation) and there is no congregation without a leadership.”

Adapted from the book ‘Human Heart: Blood Pump or Source of Intellect?’ By Dr. Gohar Mushtaq. 

The Ring

picsart_10-01-01-52-21A powerful king, ruler of many domains, was in a position of such magnificence that wise men were his mere employees. And yet one day he felt himself confused and called the sages to him. 

He said: “I do not know the cause, but something impels me to seek a certain ring, one that will enable me to stabilize my state. I must have such a ring. And this ring must be one which, when I am unhappy, will make me joyful. At the same time, if I am happy and look upon it, I must be made sad.”

The wise men consulted one another, and threw themselves into deep contemplation. Finally, they came to a decision as to the character of this ring which would suit their king.

The ring which they devised was one upon which was inscribed the legend:

THIS, TOO, WILL PASS.

Qubuliyyah (acceptance) of Darul ‘Uloom Deoband

screenshot_2016-09-20-12-21-07Narrated by Shaykh Zulfiqar Ahmad Naqshbandi (D.B) 

The blessings of the Yaqeen-e-Kaamil (outstanding conviction in Almighty Allah) stemming from the heart of Hazrat Moulana Muhammad Qaasim Nanotwi (Rahmatullah ‘Alayh) is the reason why Almighty Allah granted this institution (Darul Uloom Deoband) the Qubooliyyat-e-‘Aammah (widespread acceptance) that it enjoys today, such acceptance that boggles the mind of a person. A group of individuals were produced by this institution whose works have spread throughout the world.

Alhamdulillah, Allah Rabbul ‘Izzah has blessed and guided this Aajiz (humble servant) through the connection of the Deen, to visit approximately fifty countries, in the east and the west. (I’ve) seen America and Africa, (I’ve) went to a place where it’s day for 6 months and night for 6 months, I’ve also went to icy Siberia, where, when you’re making Wudu, you break the ice and take water from beneath to do the Wudu (ablution) and then perform Salah on the ice and the ice does not get disturbed. Allah Rabbul Izzah has also blessed me with visiting places where homes are built of snow, where even the tray wherein food is served is made of ice. Allah Rabbul Izzah also took me to one place called ‘End of the World’, in this place the sun sets and as soon as it sets, it rises again. Scientists term it the furthest corner of the world.

After visiting all these places, this Aajiz (humble servant) realized and deduced that wherever he went, there was a spiritual child of Darul Uloom Deoband present, keeping alive the work of Deen.

Ye ‘ilm o hunar ka gehwara

Tarikh ka wo shahpara he

Har phool yaha ek shola he

Har sarw yaha minara he

 The secret of such Qubuliyyah (acceptance) is the Ikhlaas (sincerity), Tawajjuh ilal-laah (focusing on Allah), Anabat ilal-laah (turning to Allah), Taqwa (Allah-consciousness) and Taharah (purity) with which the work is done. These are all bounties that attract the acceptance of Almighty Allah.

Translated from an urdu lecture of Shaykh Zulfiqar Ahmad Naqshbandi [May Allah Elevate him], Title of Lecture: Akaabir-e-Deoband awr Yaqeen Muhkam (Safar-e-Hind 2011)

 

Don’t be a walking corpse. Ways to wake up your dead heart.

images (12)“The dead person is not one who has left the world, the (truly) dead one is he who walks the earth with a dead heart.”

Stages of hardening of the heart.

There are stages that lead to heart becoming hard. In the first stage the heart becomes dark. Darkness is then followed by rust settling on the heart and in the third stage Qasawat (hardness) overtakes the heart. Qasawat (hardness) is caused when a person stays Ghaafil (unmindful) for long periods of time.

There is hope

The locks on the heart can be opened. It need not stay there forever. The darkness can be removed and the heart can become soft once again.

Imam Qushayri (Rahmatullah Alayh) has mentioned some ways to bring the heart alive.

1. Tears of regret.

The proof of this is in the Noble Ahadeeth (sayings) of The Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam)

Al Huznu Jilaa-ul Quloob

To grieve (over one’s sins) illuminates the heart.

2. Staying clear from disobedience.

The wise men have said: “Whoever leaves sin, his heart achieves softness.”

A narration states: “Whoever lowers his gaze (from unlawful) seeking Allah’s pleasure, Allah bestows him with the sweetness of Imaan (faith) that he will taste in his heart till the day he meets Him.”

3. Abundance of Dhikr (Remembrance of Allah)

Everything has a polish and the polish of the hearts is the remembrance of Allah.

4. Tilawah (recitation of Qur`an)

The Hadith informs us that hearts rust just as iron rusts. The Sahaabah R.A (Noble Companions) asked: “How can this rust be removed?” The Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) replied: ‘With Recitation of Qur`an’.

The reason the Qur`an was revealed is to give life to dead hearts. One name of the Qur`an is ‘Rooh’ (life / soul)

Just as the soul gives life to the outer body, the Qur`an gives life to the inner being of a person. Abdullah (Rahmatullah Alayh) says: “Recite Qur`an and stir the heart with it.”

The third Khalif of Islam, Sayyidinah Uthman (Radiyallahu anhu) is reported to have said: “If your hearts were pure, they would never become satiated of recitation of Quran.”

5. Staying Hungry / Fasting

6. Duaa at the time of Tahajjud (pre-dawn prayer)

7. Suhbat-e-Sulahaa (Staying in the company of the righteous)

Almighty Allah has made the Qalb (spiritual heart) such that it is able to contain His Tajalli (attention) and Divine Light. May Almighty Allah bless us with illuminated hearts.

Translated from an Urdu lecture of Shaykh Zulfiqar Ahmad Naqshbandi (May Almighty Allah elevate him) titled Qalb-Bait. Download from tasawwuf.org