Sunday, October 2, 2016



by Sister Jasmine Khan

Muharram is one of the sacred months of the Islamic year. Muharram is the month with which we begin our lunar calendar. It commemorates the Hijrah undertaken by our beloved The Beloved Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) to Madina, where he was welcomed with sanctuary. It is one of the four sanctified months about which the Holy Quran says:

 "The number of the months according to Allah is twelve (mentioned) in the Book of Allah on the day He created heavens and the earth. Among these (twelve months) there are four sanctified."(Qur'an:Surah 9, Verse 36)
These four months, according to the authentic traditions, are Dhul-Qa'dah, Dhul-Hijjah, Muharram and Rajab. All the commentators of the Holy Quran are unanimous on this point, because The Beloved Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) in his last sermon, declared: "One year consists of twelve months, of which four are sanctified months, three of them are in sequence; Dhul-Qa'dah, Dhul-Hijjah, Muharram, and the fourth is Rajab." 
 It is derived from the word 'haraam' which means forbidden. What is forbidden during this month is fighting. We are not heads of countries that wage war on others, but we have our own battle fields in our homes, families, workplace and even our neighbourhoods.
Most of us live at such a frenetic pace that when we get home from work we are tired and stressed. This is the time when impatience and intolerance flares up and we fight with our partner or our children. A good thing to do is to remember who they are and what they mean to us.  With consciousness it becomes possible to think before flaring up. The same thing often happens at work as well. When we remember that we are all working to provide a service, even if we never know who benefits from what we do, it could change our attitude.  There are many of us who are not on speaking terms with family members, holding onto grudges, whether real or imagined. We should be aware that we are all different and unique, and that we are all the divine creations of Allah. Being conscious is not enough; we have to be Allah conscious, so that even if we cannot see Allah, be aware that Allah is seeing us. This should make us pause and consider before we act impulsively, or live in enmity.
The Beloved Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said that on the 10th day of Muharram we should be more generous to our family: "One who generously spends on his family on the day of Aashora, Allah will increase (his provision) for the whole year." (Hadith:Baihaqi).
We do not have to confine such generosity to the tenth day, or for that matter, for the month of Muharram. Nor does generosity have to be limited to monetary spending. We can be more generous with our time; when a child runs to tell you something while you are busy it will make a world of difference to him if you stop to listen. In this way you will be giving time as well as kindness. The child will feel validated and very often will then leave you to continue what you are doing.  Opening up to your family about your thoughts, dreams and hopes, is an excellent method of getting them to share theirs. Knowing the hopes and dreams of your children is invaluable as a means of achieving family cohesion. Another form of generosity you can share with your family is to share with them painful moments, and what you learnt from the experience.  This could lead to them sharing things which had hurt or traumatised them and as a family you can brainstorm what lessons   can be learnt from their experiences.


This year Muharram is falling very close to the silly season, and we can very easily get caught up in the hype of the summer break. It is also very difficult to focus as the body clock is winding down after a year of working and this can make us jittery and inclined to go a bit haywire.  This is the time when reflection is very important; we need to think about what we have done and what we plan to do next. Allah speaks several times in the Quran about the need for reflection, particularly in the following lines:


"If we had caused this Quran to descend upon a mountain, thou, (O Muhammad) verily hadst seen it humbled, rent asunder by the fear of Allah. Such similitude coin We for mankind that haply they may reflect" (Quran-Surah Hashr: V 21).


Come the end of December and everyone makes resolutions, as Muslims we should be making resolutions on a daily basis. The hujaaj are returning now from having performed the fifth pillar of Islam, and as we rush to greet them we could easily forget that this is the last month of our year, that Muharram is mere days away.  Now is the time to engage in reflection, to resolve to make the shift to do better. We know that we are going to be judged by our intentions, so let us try to have only good intentions for the rest of the year, Insha'Allah.


The word resolve has a two-fold meaning:  it means to make a resolution or intention to do something, but it also means to solve an issue.  Many of us carry unresolved issues, and these clutter our lives and prevent us from true spiritual connection. It is hard to have closeness to Allah when we harbour grudges against people for real or imagined slights. Forgiveness is the key; it does not excuse the other person's action, but it does set us free. It is also important to forgive ourselves when we feel we have done something we subsequently regret. We are all born pure,natural and innocent; we are born with a Fitrah. Somewhere along the way we have become contaminated by experiences, environment and conditions.  The thing is not to beat yourself up about it, acknowledge what happened and accept it. Now try to do better. Resolve to reclaim your Fitrah, the perfection that Allah created you with. It has not been lost, it has just been overlaid with a lot of things, but it is still there.


In the stormy sea of life we have often been tossed around, but with Allah consciousness we can keep our heads above water.


"The believer is the ship and the world is the water. As long as the water remains outside the ship, it will sail through it. Once the water enters the ship, it will sink. So navigate through the world, but do not let it enter your heart and sink you into itself"(Imam Al Ghazzali)


Use this period to reflect, resolve and reclaim what we were truly meant to be, Insha'Allah.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016


Udhiya (Qurbani)


What is Udhiya?


'Udhiya' is an Arabic word meaning "blood sacrifice", and 'Qurbani' is an Urdu and Persian word derived from the Arabic word "Qurban" which literally means an act performed to seek Allah Ta'ala's pleasure. It is technically used for the sacrifice of an animal slaughtered for the sake of Allah Ta'ala.


The sacrifice of an animal has always been a recognised form of worship in many religions, but in the 'Shariah' (Islamic sacred law) of The Last and Final Messenger of Allah Ta'ala (Peace be upon him) the sacrifice of an animal has been recognised as a form of ibadah (worship) during the three days of the month Zul Hijjah, namely the 10th, 11th, and 12th .


This is to commemorate the unparalleled sacrifice offered by the Prophet Sayyidna Ibrahim, Alayhi Salam, when he, in pursuance to a command of Allah Ta'ala conveyed to him in a dream, prepared himself to slaughter his beloved son, Sayyidna Isma'il, Alayhi Salam, and actually intended to do so, but Allah Ta'ala the Almighty, after testing his submission, sent down a sheep and saved his son from the logical fate of slaughter. It is from that incident that the sacrifice of an animal became an obligatory duty to be performed by every Muslim who has the means to do it.


On who is it obligatory?


Qurbani is Wajib (obligatory) on every Muslim who is

  • Of sound mind - mature (has reached the age of puberty),
  • Muqeem (i.e. he is not a Shari traveller)
  • Possesses the amount of 612,36 grams of silver or wealth equivalent to that value which is in excess of one's basic needs and debts on any of the three days of Qurbani. It is not necessary that this amount be in one's possession for a complete lunar year. (please do consult your local Islamic Scholars for more details and exact value in your local currency)


What the Quran and Hadith says:


Allah Ta'ala Ta'ala, The Most Wise says:


"It is not their meat nor their blood that reaches Allâh, it is your piety that reaches Him. Indeed He has subjected them (animals) to you so that you may glorify Allah for guiding you, and give glad tidings to those who excel in good." (Quran-22:37)


The Noble Messenger of Allah Ta'ala(Peace be upon him) is reported to have said:


"For every hair that is on the sacrificial animal, one reward is recorded for the person making the Qurbâni."


"There is nothing dearer to Allâh during the days of Qurbâni than the sacrificing of animals. The sacrificed animal shall come on the Day of Qiyamah with its horns, hair and hooves (to be weighed in reward). The sacrifice is accepted by Allâh before the blood reaches the ground. Therefore sacrifice with an open and happy heart."

"Whoever has the capacity to sacrifice and does not do so, should not come to the place where the Eid prayer is offered." (Hadith-Ibn Majah).


Therefore if you have the means to do Qurbani, do not ignore this important part of Deen. There are many more details that relate to Qurbani which we have not covered in this brief article.


For a detailed article on the Laws & Virtues of Udhiya (Qurbani) please visit:


If you still need more info regarding Qurbani please contact:

Thursday, July 28, 2016

The Artist-motivational

The Artist


Once upon a time, a well-known painter was finishing his painting. It's an incredibly beautiful painting to be shown at the Airport during the upcoming Hajj Season.


The painter wanted this painting to be a master piece. He worked on it for weeks on the top of a 24 storey building. He was consumed by and excited with his own painting that he unconsciously took a few step backward while admiring the 2 x 8 m painting. He didn't look back when he walked backward. He kept on walking backward until it was a step away from the edge of the 24storey building. Just one more step backward and he could have fallen to his death.


A man saw what the painter was doing and was about to shout at him to warn him when he realized that his shout might surprise the painter and thus make him take that fatal one step backward and fall down. So the man took a brush and some paint and began to paint on the beautiful painting until it was completely damaged.


Upon realizing what happened to his painting, the painter got very angry and moved forward to hit the man. However, some other people who were also present at the vicinity held him and showed him his last position which almost made him fall.


MORAL: Sometimes we have painted our future with such beauty and dreamed of beautiful days we will spend with our loved one, but then Allah seemed to destroy our beautiful painting when Allah sees what danger lies ahead of us. Sometimes we are angry and annoyed by what Allah has done to us, but one thing we have to keep in our mind is that our Creator Allah is Most Wise an always keeps our best of interest in mind!

So when Allaah Subhaanahu wa Ta'ala , in His Infinite Wisdom, tests us with a situation that we think is  difficult or takes away something that in our mind was good for us, we need to remember that perhaps it may not be so. Perhaps if we had continued in our way, it might have been harmful for us and whatever Allah decreed for us is actually better for us, for He is All-Wise and All-Knowing.

Allah says:"…and it may be that you dislike a thing which is good for you and that you like a thing which is bad for you. Allah knows but you do not know." (Surah Baqarah: 216)

A calamity that makes you turn to Allah is better for you than a blessing which makes you forget the remembrance of Allah.



Walking down the road, sporting the latest handbag , designer shoes and the trendiest figure hugging abayah….Wow is she turning heads around here! Is this our new cover girl?
 The Beloved Messenger of Allah( S.A.W ) said: There are two types of people who will be punished in hell and whom I've not seen:(the second type)Women will be dressed but appear to be naked, they will attract others to themselves, and they themselves will be  attracted to others. Their heads will appear like the humps of the camels, they will not enter Paradise and they will not smell its fragrance which can be smelt from such and such a distance.
Shaytaan's ambition is to mislead. When a muslimah makes a niyyah to wear the hijaab he jumps into action.
Plot 1: He tries to stop her. If he fails…
Plot 2:Misleads her in donning hijaab. She thinks she is covering,but chooses a figure hugging abayah or she lifts the jalabeeb instead of lowering….
So lets ask ourselves,are we really covered girls or do we want to be "cover girls?"
There is a parable of a flower and a pearl both striking in their beauty, lets ponder and take a lesson, which one do we want to be?
Suddenly, a tinge of distress appeared on the flower. "Nothing accounts for sorrow in your talk; so why are u depressed?" The pearl asked."Human beings deal with us carelessly; they slight us. They don't grow us for our sake but to get pleasure from our fragrance and beautiful appearance. They throw us on the street or in the garbage can after we are dispossessed of the most valuable properties; brilliance and fragrance"
The flower sighed. And then  the flower said to the pearl: "Speak to me about your life! How do you live? How do you feel it? You are buried in the bottom of the sea. "
The pearl answered: "Although I have none of your distinctive colours and sweet scents, humans think I am precious. They do the impossible to procure me. They go on long journeys, dive deep in the seas searching for me. You might be astounded to know that the further I lay, the more beautiful and brilliant I become. That's what upraises my value in their thought. I live in a thick shell isolated in the dark seas. However, I'm happy and proud to be in a safe zone far from wanton and mischievous hands and still the humans consider me highly valuable" Do you know what the flower and the pearl symbolize?
 Think ..Think..
You will find that The flower is the woman who shows her charms and the pearl is the veiled woman who conceals her beauties.
Ponder  about it!
"O Prophet(pbuh)! Say to your wives and your daughters and the women of the faithful to draw their outer garments (jilbabs) close around themselves; that is better that they will be recognized and not annoyed. And Allah is ever Forgiving, Merciful.(Al Quran Al-Ahzab:59)

Object of Despair


Emma is a lawyer
And so is Aisha too
Colleagues going into court
At about half past two

Its 1 O'Clock right now
Aisha prays before the trial
They chat about this and that
Conversing with a smile

Aisha is in full hijab
With a loose all over Abaya (Cloak)
Emma's in her business wear
With accessories and other gear

Emma's really quite bemused
At Aisha's Godly ways
She looks Aisha in the eyes
And very firmly says

You're a smart girl Aisha
Why do you wear that across your hair?
Subjugated by "man"-kind
An object of despair

Take it off my sister
Let your banner be unfurled
Don't blindly follow all around

Aisha is amazed
But not the least bit shy
She bravely puts her milkshake down
And gives Emma the reply

My dear sister Emma,
Why do you dress the way you do?
The skirt you're wearing round your waist,
Is it really you?

Now that we've sat down
I see you tug it across your thighs,
Do you feel ashamed?
Aware of prying eyes?

I see the way you're sitting,
Both legs joined at the knees,
Who forces you to sit like that?
Do you feel at ease?

I'll tell you who obliges you,
To dress the way you do,
Gucci, Klein, and St. Laurent
All have designs on you!

In the market, its designer labels for real,
Who dictate the whims of fashion,
Generating all the garb,
To incite the basest passion

"Sex Sells" there is no doubt
But who buys with such great haste,
The answer is likes like you,
Because they want to be embraced...

They want to be accepted,
On a level playing field
Sure, with brain and intellect
But with body parts revealed

Intelligence and reason
Are useful by and by
But if you want to make a mark
Stay appealing to the eye

You claim your skirt is office-like
A business dress of sorts
Would we not laugh at Mike?
If he turned up in shorts?

His could be the smartest of pants
Pinstripe from Saville Rowe
But walking round like that my friend
He'd really have to go

Why do you douse yourself in creams
To make your skin so milky?
Why do you rip off all your hair
To keep your body silky?

A simple shower's all you need
To stay respectable and clean
The time and money that you spend
Is really quite obscene

Why do you wake up at dawn,
To apply a firm foundation,
Topped with makeup and the like,
In one chaotic combination?

And if you should have to leave the house
Devoid of this routine
Why do you feel insecure
That you should not be seen?

Be free my sister Emma
Escape from your deep mire
Don hijab today my friend
And all Islam's attire

Avoid all those sickly stares
Or whistles from afar
Walk down the street with dignity
Take pride in who you are

Strength lies in anonymity
Be a shadow in the crowd
Until you speak and interact
When your voice will carry loud

You're a smart girl Emma
Wear this across your hair
Don't be subjugated by "man"-kind
An object of despair

To use your very words my friend
Let your banner be unfurled
Don't blindly follow all around

Ummah in Crises???

Ummah in Crises???

All you need to do is…….Nothing !

Unity of Muslim Ummah is so important and it cannot be emphasised enough and likewise disunity amongst the Ummah can be disastrous.


Allah, the Most Wise, says: "And hold fast, all together, by the rope of Allah, and be not divided among yourselves..." (Quran-3:103)

While we are living and enjoying the comforts and luxuries of this world, our brothers and sisters are suffering and being oppressed all around us. Has it become such that we have become immune and insensitive to such afflictions and find so hard to assist the Ummah let alone shed even one tear.

Allah Ta'ala says in the Noble Qur'aan: " Indeed, Muslims are brothers."(Qur'an: Al Hujurat:10)

The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) has emphatically stated that "No one of you becomes a true believer until he likes for his brother what he likes for himself".(Hadith-Bukhari & Muslims)

We are ONE UMMAH, if the finger feels a pain the whole body feels the pain. It is our duty to share the pain, responsibilities, burdens and needs of our fellow brothers and sisters. The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: "The example of Muslims in their mutual love, mercy and sympathy is like that of a body; if one of the organs is afflicted, the whole body responds with sleeplessness and fever."(Hadith-Muslim)

The enemies of Islam are attempting to destroy this Ummah, piece by piece and for this to happen all we got to do is….NOTHING!

Once upon a time three bulls lived in the forest. One white, one brown and one black. They were brothers and lived together in harmony. In that forest also lived a lion that had his eye on the bulls. But every time he attacked one of them the others came to his aid and together they drove the lion away.

The lion decided that he needed to change his strategy. So one day when the Black Bull was away, he went to the other two and said, "You know, the Black Bull is black and dirty and evil. Why do you keep him with you? His is a disgrace to you. You are beautiful and noble. If the Black Bull is no longer there, you will have all the grazing to yourself. He takes away your food and adds no value to you." The two bulls listened to the lion's spiel and said, "Well, you know, he is our brother. What can we do?"

"You need to do
at all," said the lion. "I am your friend. I will do what needs to be done. Just don't come to the aid of the Black Bull when he calls you." The others agreed.

The next day, they heard the voice of the Black Bull calling for help in anguish and fear. They listened to him and went back to their grazing. Gradually the calls stopped. The two brothers could not look each other in the eye but then, nice green grass wipes away memories and after a little while it was as if the Black Bull never existed.

Then one day the lion came to the White Bull when he was alone and said, "So are you happy with the advice I gave you? Didn't I advise you well? Now here is another advice. You are the real king of the forest. You are White and clean and pure and holy and beautiful. You are wise and good. You deserve to live in solitary splendour like a king. Not with some dirty brown trash who you have to share your food with. Why do you need him? He is a liability and an embarrassment to you."

"Well, what should I do?"

"You know the score.
at all. I am there to take care of everything for you. Just relax."

Next day, the White Bull heard the dying screams of the Brown Bull and closed his ears and went back to his grazing.

The White Bull lived for a few days all by himself, grazing where he wanted and drinking from the clean streams of the forest. Then one morning the lion came again. From the look in his eyes, the White Bull knew that this visit was different. All his life flashed before his eyes. He recalled the time when the three brothers stood together, shoulder to shoulder. Then he recalled all the incidents since then. As the lion sat before him, not in any hurry, knowing that the result was pre-determined, the White Bull said to him, "I have one last wish. Will you grant it to me?"

"Anything at all my friend", said the lion.

The White Bull then climbed a hill and when he got to the top of it, he called out to the people of the forest, "O! People, I do not die today. I died the day the Black Bull died."

Afghanistan, Iraq and list goes on….So dear brothers and sisters in Islam pay heed to the above story for in it lies a deep and important lesson for the Ummah. In Unity there is strength!


Let us be firm of the Quran and Sunnah, united as a Ummah and be not divided amongst ourselves. When fellow Muslims are being attacked by the Munafiqeen(Hypocrates) and enemies of Islam, be sure to be of some help and not to just sit back and do….NOTHING!


Allaah Ta'ala says:"O believers, if you help Allaah's cause, He will help you and make your feet firm (against your enemies) and those who disbelieved woe unto them and their actions are in vain." (Quran-47:7,8)

Monday, July 18, 2016

Slow down!

Slow down !

By:Abdur Rahman Umar

"Can you believe this!" lamented Yusuf as he looked sadly at his leg covered from foot to knee in a thick white plaster cast leaving his plaster stained toes exposed.

"This is so frustrating!" he continued, addressing his exposed toes who had now become his captive audience, "Just when everything was going perfectly. Now this! Like I needed it in my life?"

Ridwaan stood idly by, adding little to the lament being addressed to the toes. He fidgeted wearily with his cell phone paying little attention to the monologue until Yusuf turned to him and asked:

"Did you hear what I said? I really didn't need this in my life. Not at any time, and definitely, definitely not now. I mean..."

"What's so special about now?" enquired Ridwaan not bothering to look up from his cell phone.

Yusuf ignored his question, shifted painfully in his chair and struggled to get his leg into a comfortable position. He stared at some of the graffiti on his plaster cast "Mojo was here!" "Oops. My brain just hit a bad sector" "On the other hand, you have different fingers" and some other writings that became a bit smudgy with the first attempt at taking a shower.

"I mean how does someone rupture an Achilles tendon playing tennis? It must be a one in a million thing, and I am the one! So now I sit – six weeks with this thing on my leg. Six weeks! and at a time when the business is going so well. Just when we got the Department of Education tender for printing. There's so much to do .... preparation, layout, design. Yo! It was going crazy at work."

Ridwaan stopped fidgeting with his cell phone long enough to exclaim, "So what's the hassle. You get a nice break and fully paid on top of it!"

"You don't understand, do you!" said Yusuf, glaring at him. An uncomfortable frown crossed his forehead, "You don't know what it means. I really didn't even have enough time to eat let alone take a six week break. We were working 12 hours a day to get that tender out. So what happens now?"

"I know exactly what it means," replied Ridwaan, "It means you were moving too fast so Allah put down a speed breaker"

"What!" he exclaimed, "What you mean...speed breaker?"

"You see, sometimes when we rush through life and we forget the important things then Allah puts down a speed bump so we can slow down and reflect. Maybe a little sickness or a small problem. Just to ponder on what we're doing and what we should be doing. And that's it! You were chasing like a madman so you got hit with a speed bump."

He paused allowing his words to sink in then continued, "You know most of us get so caught up in life then we forget about Allah, our salaah becomes just a ritual and the family ...well, they even forget who we are. I bet your kids call you Uncle by now?"

"Hey, it's not that bad," said Yusuf struggling to find a comfortable position for his plastered leg, "But I hear what you saying. Things were getting a bit out of hand. I missed my daughter's pre-school jalsa, my son's graduation and dropped a couple of salaahs on the way and jip, Allah knows what else I gave up for this tender...."

Yusuf fell silent pondering on his situation, a thin smile broke on his lips and his face lit up with this new found understanding, "So this wasn't all bad then. Actually...."

"It was for you own good," Ridwaan completed the sentence for him, "Too often we forget the real things in life...our Allah, our Deen, our families and those so called little things we tend to forget."

"Yup," chorused Yusuf, "I remember a clever guy telling me once, pay attention to the little things in life, for one day you may find out they were actually the big things. Really can't believe Allah's mercy and kindness upon us. It is, as they say, more than that of a mother. He cares for us and even what I thought was a horrible misfortune was actually an act of kindness from Him."

Allah, The Most Wise, says:"…and it may be that you dislike a thing which is good for you and that you like a thing which is bad for you. Allah knows but you do not know." ( Qur'an-Surah Baqarah: 216)

A calamity that makes you turn to Allah is better for you than a blessing which makes you forget the remembrance of Allah.

 Let us slow down and ponder of the journey of life and make more calculated decisions that will not only benefit us in the transitory life of this world but more so in the eternal life of the Hereafter.