March 27, 2023 | Ramadan 5, 1444
Living The Quran
Al-Nahl (The Bee) Sura 16: Verse 90 (partial)
"Surely Allah enjoins justice, kindness and the doing of good, to kith and kin."
This directive which has been so succinctly expressed enjoins on people three principles which provide the basis for the sound ordering of human society:
1. The first and foremost principle is 'justice' which comprises two independent truths. One, that there be balance and right proportion among human beings in respect of their rights. Two, that every person be granted his rights without any distinction. What justice really demands is balance and right proportion rather than absolute equality. For instance, it would be sheer injustice if we were to grant children equal rights with their parents, or to equally compensate those who work hard and well and those who do not. Justice requires that the moral, social, economic, legal, political and cultural rights to which a person is entitled should be granted to him or her with sincerity.
2. The second principle is benevolence which broadly embraces all such good acts as politeness, generosity, sympathy, tolerance, courtesy, forbearance, mutual accommodation, mutual consideration, giving to others more than what is their due, and being content for oneself with a little less than what one is entitled to. If justice is the foundation on which the structure of a society should rest, then benevolence represents the beauty and perfection of that structure. Justice wards off the bitterness of discord and disharmony from human life. Benevolence adds to it the elements of pleasure and sweetness.
3. The third principle enunciated in this verse is liberality to kith and kin. This is a corollary of the former principle - 'benevolence' - when it is applied to one's relatives. This consists not only of sharing one's joys and sorrows with one's kin, and in helping and supporting the fulfilment of their legitimate desires within permissible limits. But also that one should recognize that one's wealth ought not to be spent exclusively on oneself and one's immediate family. Other members of the family also have a share in it.
"Towards Understanding The Quran" - Sayyid Abul Ala Mawdudi, Vol. 4, pp. 356, 357
From Issue: 576 [Read original issue]
Understanding The Prophet's Life
Cleansing the Hearts of Tarnish
Bayhaqi cited a hadith on the authority of Abd Allah ibn Umar, quoted directly from the Prophet, peace be upon him, where he says, 'Everything has its polish, and the polish of hearts is the remembrance of Almighty God. And there's nothing that better delivers from God's punishment than His remembrance.' And when they asked, 'Not even combat [jihad] for his sake?' he answered, 'Not even if someone smites with his sword until it breaks in two.'
Doubtless, a heart grows tarnished like brass or silver, and its polish is by remembrance, which may make it shine like a crystal mirror. So when one neglects the remembrance it tarnishes, and when he returns it shines. Since the heart is tarnished by two things - heedlessness and sin - it is polished by two things: remembrance and asking forgiveness.
"The Invocation of God" - Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyya, pp. 46, 47
From Issue: 547 [Read original issue]
A Quick Checklist Of Ramadan
- Make a resolve to win the maximum favour of Allah: perform extra voluntary prayers (Nawaafil), make frequent Du'a and increase remembrance (Dhikr).
- Try to recite some Quran after every Prayer. In fact if you read 3-4 pages after every Prayer you can easily finish the entire Quran in Ramadan! Study theQuranic Tafseer (commentary) every morning.
- Invite a person you are not very close with to your home for Iftar, at least once a week. You will notice the blessings in your relationships!
- Bring life to your family! Everyday, try to conclude the fast with your family and spend some quality time together to understand each other better.
- Give gifts on 'Eid to at least 5 people: 2 to your family members, 2 to your good friends, and 1 to a person whom you love purely for the sake of Allah.
- Commit to an Islamic study circles to enhance your Islamic knowledge and practice. Plan to complete reading a book on Prophet Muhammad’s (pbuh) life in these 30 days.
- Donate generously to the masajid, Islamic organizations, and any where people are in need. "This is a month of sharing!"
- Share Ramadan and its teachings of love & patience with your neighbours. Learn how at http://www.soundvision.com/info/ramadan/
- Initiate a project to promote or revive a ‘forgotten’ social cause in the Muslim and non-Muslim community: fight against racism, AIDS, drugs, cancer, smoking…etc.
- Did you know, our society, which constitutes only 20% of world’s population, actually consumes 80% of world’s resources! Volunteer at food bank or Anti-Poverty campaign, while fasting!
- Seek the rare and oft-neglected rewards of 'the night better than a 1000 months', Laylatul-Qadr.
- Weep in private for the forgiveness of your sins: It is the month of forgiveness and Allah's Mercy! It's never too late.
- Learn to control your tongue and lower your gaze. Remember the Prophet's warning that lying, backbiting, and a lustful gaze all violate the fast! Abandon foul language forever.
- Encourage others to enjoin and love goodness, and to abandon everything evil. Play the role of a Da'ee (one who invites to Allah) with passion and sympathy.
- Experience the joy of Tahajjud prayers late at night and devote yourself purely and fully to Allah in the I'tikaf retreat during the last 10 days of Ramadan.
"Ramadan: A Time for Revival or Survival?" - Young Muslims Publication [Download and distribute]
From Issue: 592 [Read original issue]