بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

What is stinginess? Can we withhold trade secrets?

by admin

A Sahaabi رضي الله عنه asked Nabi ﷺ, “Which is the most evil action in the sight of Allah?” Nabi ﷺ replied, “Bad character and stinginess”. Stinginess does not only apply to withholding money. Generally, stinginess refers to not helping someone when you know you can.

A person can be stingy with their knowledge, skills, understanding and wisdom. Perhaps you are skilled and talented in certain matters where your family are not. To withhold your skills is stinginess. Perhaps you are experienced in a matter where your colleagues are not. To withhold your experience, stay quiet and watch them struggle is stinginess. If someone seeks your advice but you do not share your wisdom, that too is a form of stinginess.

For example, businessmen have trade secrets. Like a secret ingredient to a special recipe, if someone wants to know that exact secret which could put your local business at risk, it is permissible to not inform them. That is your livelihood and you are not obliged. However, if you run a successful bakery and another person in town wants to open one too. If they approach you for tips, queries about the type of oven or baking tools they should buy, your experience and knowledge can help them save money. You have been through the struggles of opening a business, your help would be invaluable. To withhold it, is stinginess.

Eventually they will learn, why not help them from the beginning? Do not see other businesses as competitors who will empty your pockets, see them as opportunities to earn the currency of the hereafter. We all start from square one, we were all once amateurs. Help people work their way up and Allah will help you in your work. To reject them is to be stingy and to be stingy is disliked by Allah. May Allah save us from His displeasure, aameen.

— Hazrat Ml. Dawood Seedat حفظه الله

Above is an extract from Hazrat’s talk on 16/04/18 in Masjid-ut-Taqwa, Pietermaritzburg. To listen to the full talk, please click here.

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بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Uswatulmuslimah.co.za | Role Models for the Muslimah

‘Eid or Anticlimax?


Imagine receiving an elaborately wrapped gift platter filled with the most exotic sweet meats. From burfee to magaj and jalebee to halwa, the platter promises the taste buds a trip to gastronomic ‘heaven’. However, as you undo the wrapping and pull back the cellophane, you see a flash of movement. No! A giant cockroach darts out from behind the burfee block and climbs over the goolaab jamoon in its race for freedom!

This is a typical example of an anticlimax. A person expected one thing, and everything seemed promising, and suddenly, things turned out completely contrary to expectations.

‘Eid is the occasion when the servants of Allah Ta‘ala receive their prizes and rewards for obeying Allah Ta‘ala and worshipping Him faithfully throughout the month of Ramadhaan. Hence, although ‘Eid is a joyous occasion, a Muslim’s greatest concern is that Allah Ta‘ala should crown his efforts with acceptance. If Allah Ta‘ala does not accept his efforts, his hunger and exertion would have been to little or no avail.

Bearing this in mind, a Muslim will thus ensure that he continues to obey Allah Ta‘ala on this day, not descend into sin and transgression. In this regard, some of the avenues of sin that are most common on this occasion are those of intermingling between non-Mahram men and women, dressing inappropriately (e.g. revealing or body hugging clothing) and being lax regarding salaah.

To commit such sins on any occasion is bad – but on the occasion of ‘Eid is even worse. By behaving in this manner, how do we hope to gain the acceptance of Allah Ta‘ala?

When the cockroach is found in the platter, nobody wants to partake of the sweetmeats. Similarly, when the day of ‘Eid is spoilt with sin, it taints the efforts of the entire month of Ramadhaan.

May Allah Ta‘ala bless us all on this joyous occasion and crown our broken efforts with His acceptance.

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Uswatulmuslimah.co.za | Role Models for the
Muslimah

Set Aside for Sadaqah


Abu Umaamah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) was a Sahaabi who loved to give charity. Hence, he would even make a point of setting aside wealth to give in charity. His love for charity was such that he would never turn a beggar away empty handed, even if it meant giving the beggar an onion, date or something else that he could eat.

One day, a beggar came to Abu Umaamah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu). However, at that time, Abu Umaamah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) had already given everything that he had set aside in charity, and all he possessed were three dinars (gold coins). Not wishing to turn the beggar away empty handed, he gave him one of the dinars. Not long thereafter, another beggar came, so he gave him a dinar as well. Finally, when a third beggar arrived, Abu Umaamah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) gave him the third dinar, thus spending all the wealth that he possessed.

When his slave girl, who was not a Muslim, saw that he had given all the wealth in charity, she became upset and exclaimed, “You did not leave anything for us!” However, Abu Umaamah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) was unaffected and calmly lay down to rest before the Zuhr Salaah.

When the Zuhr azaan was called out, the slave girl woke Abu Umaamah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) for the salaah. On awaking, he performed wudhu and proceeded to the musjid for the Zuhr Salaah. After he had departed, the slave girl lamented and felt pity for him as he was fasting. She thus took a loan and used the money to buy food for his supper and oil to light the lamp. Before his arrival, she went to prepare his bedding for the night. However, to her utter surprise, she found three hundred gold coins in the bedding! She thought to herself, “He only gave the three dinars in charity as he knew that he had left three hundred dinars in his bedding.”

Abu Umaamah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) eventually returned home after the ‘Esha Salaah. On entering the home, he saw the food laid out for him and the lamp burning, and thus began to smile in happiness saying, “This is goodness which has come to us from the side of Allah Ta‘ala.” After he had eaten, the slave girl said to him, “May Allah Ta‘ala have mercy on you! You had kept some money in reserve for difficulties, yet you did not inform me of it so that I could use it?” Abu Umaamah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) was surprised and asked, “What money? I did not keep any money in reserve.”

The slave girls thus went to his bedding and opened it, showing him the dinars. When Abu Umaamah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) saw the dinars, he became happy, (as he realized that it had come from Allah Ta‘ala) and greatly amazed. On her part, the slave girl was so affected that she immediately accepted Islam.

(Hilyatul Awliyaa vol. 10, pg. 134)

Lessons:

1. When a person gives charity with the sincere intention of pleasing Allah Ta‘ala, he will definitely be rewarded. Sometimes, he is even rewarded in this world as well as the next. Often, a person does not realize that many of the favours of Allah Ta‘ala that he is enjoying are a result of the charity that he is giving.Similarly, Allah Ta‘ala averts calamities from his servants when they give charity.

2. The generosity of the Sahaabah (radhiyallahu ‘anhum) was such that they never turned a person away empty handed, even if it meant giving their own food or money away and going hungry.

3. Just as we set money aside and save for holidays, upgrading the home or car, etc., we should set money aside for sadaqah, even if it be a small amount. This amount, in reality, is our investment for Jannah.

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Abu Bakr (RA) and Rabeeah (RA)’s dispute

by admin

There was a Sahabi named Rabeeah Al-Aslami (RA). Nabi ﷺ gave him a plot of land and an adjacent plot to Abu Bakr (RA). After some time elapsed, they both disagreed on a date palm tree that was on the border of their lands. Both were claiming that the tree was on their side. As the dispute intensified, Abu Bakr (RA) said some negative words to him. Immediately, he regretted his words causing him to forget the dispute. He was no longer concerned about the tree and he offered it to Rabeeah (RA). He requested him to utter the same words back to make it even.

However, Rabeeah (RA) held him in very high regard, how then can he utter negative words back? Naturally, he refused to do so. Abu Bakr (RA) insisted but he continued to refuse. Eventually, he walked away to take the case to Nabi ﷺ. A few clansmen were close by and had overheard the dispute. They said to Rabeeah (RA), “May Allah have mercy on Abu Bakr! He was the one who said something inappropriate to you, so why is he asking the Messenger of Allah ﷺ for help against you?”

Rabeeah (RA) replied, “Do you know who he is? He is Abu Bakr As-Sideeq, the second of two (in the cave of Thaur) and the most eminent of all Muslims. So beware: do not let Abu Bakr see you taking my side against him, for he might become angry as a result. Then he will go to the Messenger of Allah who will become angry because of Abu Bakr’s anger, and then Allah – the Possessor of Might and Majesty – will become angry because of their anger. And as a result of that, Rabeeah will become destroyed.”

The clansmen were focused on the case, assuming that he would take them as a witness against Abu Bakr (RA). But he was more concerned about pleasing Allah, which is exemplified by his profound reply. Thus, they left the scene and he followed Abu Bakr (RA) closely.

Once they both reached Nabi ﷺ, Abu Bakr (RA) gave his account of what happened. Nabi ﷺ then raised his head towards Rabeeah (RA) and asked him to say his side of the story. For it is a mark of fairness, to listen to both sides of the story before passing a judgement; which we often omit when speaking on a matter. Rabeeah (RA) then narrated the exact same account of what happened. He included the negative words that Abu Bakr (RA) had said and that he refused to repeat them back.

Nabi ﷺ said, “Yes, indeed. And do not say similar words to him, but instead say; ‘May Allah forgive you, O Abu Bakr.'” Rabeeah repeated these words and forgave him. However, Abu Bakr (RA) still felt guilty. Thus he turned around and walked away crying.

Look at the softness of his heart. He used slightly harsh words and that alone reduced him to tears, even after he was completely forgiven. From this story, we can see that the Sahaaba (RA) had clean hearts. They had disagreements in the spur of the moment, this happens to everyone. However, when the hearts are clean disputes are resolved immediately. Before Islam, they would fight for decades and many problems would arise from one small dispute. After Islam, even a big dispute was easily resolved. This highlights the importance and positive changes that occur after tazkiyah is done.

Nowadays, we do not give enough importance to our spiritual purification. We utter many incorrect, hurtful words as though we will never be reckoned or held accountable. To hold others to account whilst forgetting ourselves, is against the teachings of our deen. Rabeeah (RA) feared incurring the wrath of Allah, due to which he gave preference to forgiving rather than arguing. And what about ourselves, what do we give preference to?

May Allah enable us to cleanse our hearts and bless us with good character, Aameen.

— Hazrat Ml. Dawood Seedat حفظه الله

Above is an extract from Hazrat’s talk on 03/08/17 in Masjid-ut-Taqwa, Pietermaritzburg. To listen to the full talk, please click here.

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Uswatulmuslimah.co.za | Role Models for the
Muslimah

Dedicated for Deen


(Sayyidah Maryam ‘alaihas salaam – Part Two)

The mother and father of Sayyidah Maryam (‘alaihas salaam) were ‘Imraan and Hannah. Before the birth of Maryam (‘alaihas salaam), Hannah was unable to bear a child.

One day, Hannah observed a bird feeding its chick. Seeing this spectacle of love and compassion, her heart was overcome by the desire to have a child. She thus turned to Allah Ta‘ala in du‘aa, begging him to bless her with a child, until her du‘aa was answered. Soon thereafter, when she conceived, she vowed to Allah Ta‘ala that she would dedicate her child to worshipping Him and serving Musjidul Aqsa. (Surah Aal ‘Imraan v35, Tafseer Ibnu Katheer vol. 2 pg. 337)

When the child was born, Hannah noticed that it was a girl! However, normally only a male child would be dedicated for serving in the musjid and worshipping Allah Ta‘ala. Nevertheless, Hannah understood that Allah Ta‘ala knew best, and it was in His infinite wisdom that He had blessed her with a daughter, instead of a son. (Surah Aal ‘Imraan v36, Tafseer Qurtubi vol. 5 pg. 101 and Tafseerul Madaarik vol. 1 pg. 172)

Hannah then named her daughter ‘Maryam’ which meant ‘worshipper’ in the language of the time. In doing so, her intention was that although her daughter cannot serve in the musjid, on account of being a female, she will still dedicate her to worshipping Allah Ta‘ala. (Surah Aal ‘Imraan v36, Tafseerul Madaarik vol. 1 pg. 173 and Bayaanul Quraan vol. 1 pg. 222)

Hannah then made a special du‘aa saying, “I seek Your protection (O Allah) for her and her progeny from Shaitaan the rejected.”

Whenever a child is born, Shaitaan interferes with the child and pokes it, causing it to cry out aloud. However, through the blessing of this du‘aa of Hannah, Sayyidah Maryam (‘alaihas salaam) and her son, Nabi ‘Isa (‘alaihis salaam), were both safeguarded from Shaitaan and thus did not cry when they were born. (Surah Aal ‘Imraan v36 and Saheeh Bukhaari #3286 and #4548)

Lessons:

1. Every person has unfulfilled wishes, desires and aspirations. Sometimes, a person desires to be blessed with a child. Regardless of what the desire may be, the only One who can fulfill our ambition is Allah Ta‘ala. Hence, even though we adopt the means, we believe, from our hearts, that only Allah Ta‘ala can make the means effective. After all, there are so many people who undergo fertility treatment, yet still fail to conceive.

2. The ambition of Hannah was not to merely have a child, but rather to dedicate her child to the worship of Allah Ta‘ala and serving the musjid. There are many parents who even before the birth of their children, plan their career path, whether in medicine, law, engineering, etc. However, how many parents plan for their children to be the worshippers of Allah Ta‘ala and their sons to be devotees of the musjid? How many parents take steps to ensure that their children attend the best madrasahs and acquire the best Deeni upbringing and education? These are the ultimate ‘careers’ as these ‘professions’ bear profits in the Hereafter.

3. We all plan and hope for our lives to work out in a certain way. However, Allah Ta‘ala knows what is best for us and blesses us accordingly. On our part, we should always be happy and content with the decree of Allah Ta‘ala and should be appreciative of His favour upon us, as we do not even deserve any of His bounties.

4. When her child was born, the concern of Hannah was for her children to be protected from Shaitaan. Hence, every parent, from before their child is even born, should worry for the safety of their child’s imaan and take the appropriate steps to safeguard their Deen. Together with putting the necessary measures into place, we have to make constant du‘aa to Allah Ta‘ala to safeguard them from all evil and sin.

(to be continued insha-Allah)

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Wi-Fi Free


We often see the sign “Free Wi-Fi”. In fact, we often search for this sign, as people fear becoming ‘disconnected’. Whether in a hotel, airport, restaurant or anywhere else, this sign is a sure draw card, attracting people to the premises.

However, it is doubtful that any of us would have seen a sign saying “Wi-Fi Free”, even though this is the sign that we all need to hang in our homes at the very least for the last ten days of Ramadhaan.

The last ten days of Ramadhaan are unlike the first twenty days. It is most probably during one of the odd nights of these ten days that Laylatul Qadr (the Night of Power) occurs which is more virtuous than a thousand months. Showing his Ummah the importance of these ten days, Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) exerted himself even further during this blessed period.

After understanding the significance of these ten days, we all desire to exert ourselves and reap the great rewards offered by Allah Ta‘ala. However, there are numerous distractions which lie in ambush, waiting to ‘pounce’ and trap us, preventing us from fulfilling our ambition. Among these, perhaps the greatest distraction is the internet.

Be it novels, social media or anything similar, most of these distractions are facilitated by the internet. Hence, to ‘nip the distraction in the bud’, we should aim to make the last ten days (rather make the entire month of Ramadhaan) Wi-Fi and internet free.

By freeing ourselves of these distractions, we will find ourselves free to make the most of this blessed period. Furthermore, the internet is the cause of many evils and sins taking place. Hence, disconnecting from the internet will undoubtedly aid us in connecting with Allah Ta‘ala, which is the very objective of the month of Ramadhaan.

May Allah Ta‘ala assist us all to make the most of this blessed period and truly connect with Him.

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Salah is like a fruit

by admin

With regards to Salah, Imam Ghazali رحمة الله عليه has said that cleanliness of the clothes and body, is like the outer peel of a fruit. For example, an orange has an outer peel. Inside, each orange segment is covered by a thin skin. Now if a person was to buy an orange and there are marks on the peel, he will assume that the orange is not tasty so he will not buy it. On the other hand, if the outside is unblemished, he will buy it assuming the inside to be tasty.

Just like the orange peel is important, similarly, how we make our Whudu for Salah is very important. Hazrat Ml. Yunus Patel رحمة الله عليه would say that to increase khushu/concentration in Salah, our Whudu must be correct. Thereafter, our clothing is like the skin on each orange segment. We must make an effort to dress in a manner pleasing to Allah. After that, our heart must be sincere. This will beautify our Salah until our Salah becomes perfected from the outside in and from the inside out.

— Hazrat Maulana Dawood Seedat حفظه الله