MOTIVATION FOR SALAAH

MOTIVATION FOR SALAAH

So I have been really busy teaching, had a car accident (Aalhamdolillah much better now).

I was doing the beauty of salaah with the older children class, for motivation for Ramadan and inshallah every day of our lives.

I would like to share what we have learnt and been trying to practice so far:

Excerpts from “How to taste the true beauty of salaah” series by Mishari Al Kharraz:

1. Say Allahu akbar and throw the world behind you.

Did you ever think: why do we start our prayer with Allahu akbar not with subhanAllah? Realize that when you say Allahu akbar you affirm that the one before whom you are about to stand is greater than anything occupying you at that moment— greater than your sleep, your families, your bills, and your worries. Just imagine that when you say Allahu akbar while raising your hands you are throwing all of that behind you!

2. Visualize the veil.

When you stand to pray, Allah ‘azza wa jall commands: Raise the veils from between Me and my servant! As soon as you say Allahu akbar and start your prayer, Allah sets His beautiful face to yours and doesn’t turn away from you, unless you do. When your thoughts or your sight drifts off, He orders the veils to be drawn back down. Visualize these veils being lifted to keep concentrated with your heart and body. Are you still drifting? This is why you repeat the great words Allahu akbar as you move into each position; it’s a reminder and a new chance again and again to focus!

3. Salute the King.

Imagine walking into a palace, how would you recognize the servants of the king? Probably by their humble position: looking down. As you lower your gaze to the place of your prostration and place your hands right over left and close to your chest it is time to salute the King. Imagine standing in front of Allah ‘azza wa jall as you utter this beautiful saluation and feel each word: Subhanakallahumma wa bihamdika, wa tabaarakasmuka wa ta’alaa jadduka— How perfect You are O Allah, and I praise You. Blessed be Your name, and lofty is Your position and none has the right to be worshipped except You.

Realize that only the parts of salah you are mindful of are being accepted and that Shaytan does his very best to steal every sweet moment you have with Allah!

4. Feel each ayah of Surah Al-Fatiha is answered.

You are now ready to enter the essence of it all: Surah Al-Fatiha, the greatest surah of the Quran, without which your prayer is nullified. Know that Allah Himself answers back when you recite of Surah Al-Fatiha, so add a short pause after each ayah, feeling this amazing dialogue. How can you ever drift of in this part of the prayer?

5. Utter His name with pure love.

What has brought you to stand here right now? It is your love and longing to be with Allah ‘azza wa jall. And when you meet up with your beloved, what do you first say? The sweet sound of the beloved’s name, the name that blesses everything it falls upon! Feel the bismillaahir-rahmaanir-raheem soothing your heart as it gently rolls off your lips.

6. Stand still at: “the Lord of the worlds.”

Rasulullah (SAW) told us, “Alhamdulillah fills the scale!” [Muslim] Really feel gratefulness when you say alhamdulillah. Did you see those documentaries where they zoom out from the cells of a plant’s leaf all the way to the planets and galaxies? Now instead of that leaf, start the zoom out process with the image of yourself standing before Allah. Then zoom back down, back through the universe, to the place you are standing in prayer. The next time you pray view yourself from above and far away and truly taste the meaning of Rabbil aalemeen (Lord of the worlds)!

7. Reflect on Ar-Rahmaanir Raheem before Maaliki yawmid-Deen.

Have you ever wondered why Allah’s names Ar-Rahmaanir and Ar-Raheem come before Maaliki yawmid-Deen (Master of the Day of Judgement)? Be reminded that it is the Most Gracious and Merciful who will judge us on the the Day of Judgement! So feel empowered and comforted when you say Ar-Rahmaanir-Raheem and then pause a moment at Maaliki yawmid-Deen, realizing the horrors of that Day.

8. Know what iyyaaka na’budu wa iyyaaka nasta’een really means.

You alone we worship, and unto You alone we turn for help. Let this remind you to make Allah alone your focus, not the people. So when you are asked, why did you do this or that (deed), you can firmly answer: for Allah! Feel this ayah by knowing that the sahabah used to weep for hours reciting it. One of them was once praying in Mecca. His friend went ahead and did the tawaf and when he returned to him, he was still at this verse, repeating it and crying, until the sun came up.

9. Say Aameen as if your life depended on it.

The most comprehensive supplication you can make is: ihdinas-siraatal-mustaqeem (Guide us to the straight path). See how you followed the proper etiquettes of how to ask Allah? You started glorifying and praising Him and then you make your request: Guide us. Now realize that your entire existence depends on this supplication. The ameen you’ll pronounce now will have to come from the bottom of your heart. Ameen means: My Lord, grant or answer (my prayers). Say ameen as if you have been sentenced to death and are pleading for pardon, begging with passion.

10. Feel the bond with your Rabb. 

When you say subhana Rabbiyya- al-‘atheem (How perfect My Lord is, The Supreme) in ruku’, focus on the pronoun that means my (in Rabbi). It adds that element of bonding: He is My Lord, who raised me in His care and who is nurturing me. Know Rasulullah (SAW) and the Companions used to be in the bowing position as long as he would be in the standing segment of salah. One companion said that he recited Al Fatiha, then Al Baqara, Ali Imran, An-Nisaa’ and Al Ma’ida, and the companion Abdullah Ibn Al Zubair was beside him, still in his ruku’.

11. Win the grand finale: your sujood.

Your sujood is the ultimate symbol of complete submission to your Creator. Rasulullah (SAW) said: “The closest that a servant is to his Lord is when he is in prostration.” [Muslim] And: “Prostrate much because there is no Muslim that prostrates to Allah except that Allah raises him one degree in Paradise by it and forgives for him a sin.”[Ahmad] Imagine you are being raised one degree in Paradise with each sujood and a sin falls off you with each prostration. Prostrate with body, heart, and soul and taste the sweetest feeling in the world!

12. Supplicate before the tasleem.

After the words of the tashahhud (sitting position at the end of prayer) and before the tasleem (saying salaam to indicate the end of prayer), there is a precious moment many waste! When the Rasulullah (SAW) taught Abdallah ibn Mas’ood (RA) the tashahhud he said: … Then let him choose whatever supplications he wishes. [Al-Bukhaari, Muslim]. Just before you say tasleem, make at least three heartfelt dua’s to benefit from this treasure chest instead of rushing to say the salaam!

Remember this: the sweetness of this life lies in remembering Him, the sweetness of the next life lies in seeing Him! The next time you proceed for prayer, go because you love Him, go because you miss Him and long to be with Him. Feel your heart flutter. Only then, will you be on your way to attaining that inner peace and comfort salah was prescribed for.

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Feeling That Your Imaan Is Low?

Feeling That Your Imaan Is Low?

Don’t get discouraged if your Imaan is low sometimes. You are not a lost case. Imaan is organic and can be cultivated. Just as a tree needs sunshine, water and good soil; Imaan needs salat, dua’, fasting, Dhikr, sadaqa, Quran recitation, contemplation of Allah’s signs and blessings, and the company of good people and Mu’mineen.

 Authentic Islamic knowledge is also important. The more you increase your knowledge, the more you understand the depth of Laa ilaha il-Allah. The more you study, the more you are awed by the Majesty of Allah; the more you appreciate the beauty of Islam and its completeness, the more your mind feels certain, and your heart feels assured, and your soul feels peace. All of this leads to Taqwa) and increased Imaan.

 You don’t have to change your life in one day, or adopt all these behaviours at once. Try to implement them in your life one at a time.

 When Rasulullah (SAW) sent Mu’aadh ibn Jabal to the people of Yemen to teach them about Islam, he said, “O Muaadh! You are going to a community who are of the People of the Book. So, first invite them to bear witness that there is none worthy of worship except Allah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah. If they accept this, then inform them that Allah makes five prayers in a day and night obligatory for them. If they accept this, then inform them that Allah makes charity (i.e., Zakat) obligatory for them. (It is) to be taken from their rich and given to their poor.” (Bukhari)

 You can start the same way. Keep Laa ilaha il-Allah on your tongue all the time, and start doing your salat. You will feel the difference in your Imaan right away, as it takes root and grows.

 Of course avoiding sins and making repentance for past sins is part of the formula too, but don’t despair if you are still committing sins. Start doing the behaviours of Imaan as I described, and this will lead you in a very natural way to giving up sin, and making tawbah. You will not have to force it. Just as a river washes the dirt from your skin, actions like salat and Dhikr will wash away your desire for sinful things, and you will find your connection with Allah getting stronger and stronger.

 Abu Hurairah (RA) narrated, “I heard Rasulullah (SAW) saying, ‘suppose one of you had a river running at his door, and he washed from it five times a day: would any dirt remain on him?’ They (the companions) said, ‘No dirt will remain on him.’ He (Rasulullah (SAW)) said, ‘That is the likeness of the five prayers. Allah remits sins with them.’”

 Of course you should ask Allah to renew the Imaan in your heart and always make it grow. But you must also strive and struggle. Allah says:

ٱللَّهِ‌ۗ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ لَا يُغَيِّرُ مَا بِقَوۡمٍ حَتَّىٰ يُغَيِّرُواْ مَا بِأَنفُسِہِمۡ‌ۗ

“Verily, Allah does not change the condition of a people until they (first) change that which is in their hearts.” (Surah ar-Rad 13:11)

 You must put in the work. You can do it. Your soul is as capable of purity and Imaan as anyone else’s. Your soul obeys the laws of creation that Allah has set down. It will respond to these actions of Imaan. Go ahead. I know you can do it, Insha’Allah.

 Some people say, “I can’t pray, I am too corrupted. I have committed too many sins. I would feel like a hypocrite, and I’m sure Allah would not accept my prayer. I have to stop all my sins first, and then I can pray with a clean spirit.”

 That’s like saying, “I can’t take a shower because I am too dirty. I need to get clean first, and then I’ll take a shower.”

The salat is the purifier. You perform salat for many reasons, one of which is to wash away your sins. Even if you continue to commit sins, keeping on doing your salat, just as you bathe every day because you get dirty ever day.

 If it doesn’t feel like it’s working right away, give it time. Keep on performing your actions of Imaan. Don’t give up. When you plant a seed, you don’t see anything at all for many days. And then all you see is a tiny shoot. Give your tree time to grow. Give yourself time to change. Trust the process that Allah has given us. Your Imaan will come back Insha’Allah, and will soar to the sky

The Ramadaan Sermon Of Rasulullah (SAW)

The Ramadaan Sermon Of Rasulullah (SAW)

Salmaan Al-Farsi (RA) reported that Rasulullah (SAW) delivered a sermon on the last day of the month of Sha’ban. In it Rasulullah (SAW) said:

“O People! The month of Allah (Ramadaan) has come with its mercies, blessings and forgiveness’s. Allah has decreed this month the best of all months. The days of this month are the best among the days and the nights are the best among the nights and the hours during Ramadan are the best among the hours. This is a month in which you have been invited by Him (to fast and pray). Allah has honoured you in it. In every breath you take is a reward of Allah, your sleep is worship, your good deeds are accepted and your invocations are answered.

Therefore, you must invoke your Lord in all earnestness with hearts free from sin and evil, and pray that Allah may help you to keep fast, and to recite the Holy Qur’an. Indeed! Miserable is the o­ne who is deprived of Allah’s forgiveness in this great month. While fasting remember, the hunger and thirst, o­n the Day of Judgement. Give alms to the poor and needy. Pay respect to your elders, have sympathy for your youngsters and be kind towards your relatives and kinsmen. Guard your tongue against unworthy words, and your eyes from scenes that are not worth seeing (forbidden) and your ears from sounds that should not be heard.

Be kind to orphans so that if your children may become orphans they will also be treated with kindness. Do repent to Allah for your sins and supplicate with raised hands at the times of prayer as these are the best times, during which Allah Almighty looks at His servants with mercy. Allah Answers if they supplicate, Responds if they call, Grants if He is asked, and Accepts if they entreat. O people! You have made your conscience the slave of your desires.

Make it free by invoking Allah for forgiveness. Your back may break from the heavy load of your sins, so prostrate yourself before Allah for long intervals, and make this load lighter. Understand fully that Allah has promised in His Honour and Majesty that, people who perform salat and Sajdah (prostration) will be guarded from Hell-fire o­n the Day of Judgement.

O people!, if anyone amongst you arranges for Iftaar (meal at sunset) for any believer, Allah will reward him as if he had freed a slave, and Allah will forgive him his sins. A companion asked: “but not all of us have the means to do so” Rasulullah (SAW) replied: “Keep yourself away from Hell-fire though it may consist of half a date or even some water if you have nothing else.”

O people! anyone who during this month cultivates good manners, will walk over the Sirat (bridge to Paradise) o­n the day when feet will tend to slip. For anyone who during this month eases the workload of his servants, Allah will make easy his accounting, and for anyone who doesn’t hurt others during this month, Allah will safeguard him from His Wrath o­n the Day of Judgement. Anyone who respects and treats an orphan with kindness during this month, Allah shall look at him with kindness o­n that Day. Anyone who treats his kinsmen well during this month, Allah will bestow His Mercy o­n him o­n that Day, while anyone who mistreats his kinsmen during this month, Allah will keep away from His Mercy.

Whoever offers the recommended prayers during this month, Allah will save him from Hell, and whoever observes his obligations during this month, his reward will be seventy times the reward during other months. Whoever repeatedly invokes Allah’s blessings o­n me, Allah will keep his scale of good deeds heavy, while the scales of others will be tending to lightness. Whoever recites during this month an ayah (verse) of the Qur’an, will get the reward of reciting the whole Qur’an in other months.

O people! the gates of Paradise remain open during this month. Pray to your Lord that they may not be closed for you. While the gates of Hell are closed, pray to your Lord that they never open for you. Satan has been chained, invoke your Lord not to let him dominate you.”

Ali ibn Talib (RA) said: “I asked, ‘O Messenger of Allah, what are the best deeds during this month’?” ‘Rasulullah (SAW) replied: ‘O Abu-Hassan, the best of deeds during this month is to be far from what Allah has forbidden’.

 

Salah al-Istikahra

Salah al-Istikahra

Description of the Salah al-Istikahra

The description of Salah al-Istikahra was narrated by Jabir ibn ‘Abd-Allah al-Salami (RA) who said:

“The Messenger of Allah (SAW) used to teach his companions to make Istikahra in all things, just as he used to teach them surahs from the Qur’an. Rasulullah (SAW) said: “If any one of you is concerned about a decision he has to make, (or in the version narrated by Ibn Mas’oud as: ‘if any one of you wants to do something…) then let him pray two rakaahs of non-obligatory prayer

A translation of the Dua is as follows:

“Oh Allah, I seek Your counsel by Your knowledge and I seek Your assistance by Your power and I ask You from Your immense favour, for verily You are able while I am not, and verily You know while I do not, and You are the knower of the Unseen. O Allah, if You know this affair ( mention affair here ) to be good for me in relation to my religion, my life and aftermath, my present and future, then decree it and facilitate it for me, and bless me with it, and if You know this affair to be ill for me concerning my religion, my life and end, my present and future, then remove it from me and remove me from it, and decree for me what is good, whatever it may be, and make me satisfied with it.”

Another translation is as follows: “O Allah, I seek Your guidance [in making a choice] by virtue of Your knowledge, and I seek ability by virtue of Your power, and I ask You of Your great bounty. You have power, I have none. And You know, I know not. You are the Knower of hidden things. O Allah, if in Your knowledge, this matter (then it should be mentioned by name) is good for me both in this world and in the Hereafter (or: in my religion, my livelihood and my affairs), then ordain it for me, make it easy for me, and bless it for me. And if in Your knowledge it is bad for me and for my religion, my livelihood and my affairs (or: for me both in this world and the next), then turn me away from it, [and turn it away from me], and ordain for me the good wherever it may be and make me pleased with it.” (Reported by al-Bukhari, al-Tirmidhi)

Conditions of the Salah

One must perform Wudhu before entering into any Salaah and so Wudhu must be performed before doing Salah al-Istikahra.

Ibn Hajar said, commenting on this hadith: “Istikahra is a word which means asking Allah to help one make a choice, meaning choosing the best of two things where one needs to choose one of them.”

With the Salaah completed one should immediately say the supplications of al-Istikahra.

Istikahra is done when a decision is to be made in matters which are neither obligatory nor prohibited. So one does not need to do Istikahra for deciding whether he should go for hajj or not. Because if he is financially able to do it then hajj is obligatory and he does not have a choice.

But Istikharah can be done in all kind of other permissible matters where a choice needs to be made such as buying something permissible, taking a job or choosing a spouse etc.

It is related in the Hadith that Rasulullah (SAW) used to teach the Istikharah to the Sahaabah like the Qur’an is taught to children. In another Hadith it is stated that ‘He does not fail who makes Istikharah and he does not regret who makes consultation.

Method

Rasulullah (SAW) said, “If one of you is concerned about some practical undertaking, or about making plans for a journey, he should perform two rakaahs of voluntary prayer.” Then with all sincerity recite the following Du’a.

اللَّهُمَّ إِنِّي أَسْتَخِيرُكَ بِعِلْمِكَ وَأَسْتَقْدِرُكَ بِقُدْرَتِكَ وَأَسْأَلُكَ مِنْ فَضْلِكَ الْعَظِيمِ فَإِنَّكَ تَقْدِرُ وَلَا أَقْدِرُ وَتَعْلَمُ وَلَا أَعْلَمُ وَأَنْتَ عَلَّامُ الْغُيُوبِ اللَّهُمَّ إِنْ كُنْتَ تَعْلَمُ أَنَّ هَذَا الْأَمْرَ خَيْرٌ لِي فِي دِينِي وَمَعَاشِي وَعَاقِبَةِ أَمْرِي فَاقْدُرْهُ لِي وَيَسِّرْهُ لِي ثُمَّ بَارِكْ لِي فِيهِ وَإِنْ كُنْتَ تَعْلَمُ أَنَّ هَذَا الْأَمْرَ شَرٌّ فِي دِينِي وَمَعَاشِي وَعَاقِبَةِ أَمْرِي فَاصْرِفْهُ عَنِّي وَاصْرِفْنِي عَنْهُ وَاقْدُرْ لِيَ الْخَيْرَ حَيْثُ كَانَ ثُمَّ ارْضِنِي بِهِ

Allahumma innee astakheeruka bi ilmika wa-astaqdiruka biqudratika wa-as’aluka min fadhlika al-adheem. Fa innaka taqdiru walaa aqdiru. Wa ta’lamu walaa a’alamu wa anta allaamul ghuyoob. Allahumma in kunta ta’lamu anna haadhal-amr khayrun liy fiy deeniy wa-ma’aashiy wa-‘aaqibat amriy, fa’qdruhliy wa-yassirh liy thumma baarik liy feehi. Wa in-kunta ta’lamu anna haadhal amr sharrun liy fiy deeniy wa-ma’aashiy wa-‘aaqibat amriy. Fa asrifh annee wa-srif ‘anhu. Wa aqdurh liyal khayr hayth kaana thumma a-rdhiniy bihee

(At both instances where “haadhal amr” appears, mention affair here) Translation:

“O Allah! Behold I ask You the good through Your Knowledge, and ability through Your Power, and beg (Your favour) out of Your infinite Bounty. For surely You have Power; I have none. You know all; I know not. You are the Great Knower of all things.”

“O Allah! If in Your Knowledge this matter be good for my faith (Deen), for my livelihood, and for the consequences of my affairs, then ordain it for me, and make it easy for me, and bless me therein. But if in Your Knowledge, this matter be bad for my faith (Deen) for my livelihood, and for the consequences of my affairs, then turn it away from me, and turn me away there from, and ordain for me the good wherever it be, and cause me to please with it.”

To Bow Down Before My Allah

To Bow Down Before My Allah

Before darkness crumbles,
Before light takes its first breath,
I awake…
To depart to a place that humbles
To determine my destination after death.

Believing- to which I cannot say farewell,
I awake…
To eyes still under slumber’s spell
To limbs and bed, that are allies
To comfort that there is a prize.

As I stand before the One,
I awake…
With past sins, mistakes undone,
With modesty and lowered gaze,
With infinite gratitude and praise.

Before and after darkness crumbles,
Before and after light takes its first breath,
Five times, I awake…
To peace
To renewal
An outlet for release
An escape from the cruel
To direction of which path to follow

I awake.
I awake
I awake.
For Him.
For One.
For Allah

On The Wings Of Salaah.

On The Wings Of Salaah.

Just close your eyes and open your heart,
And feel your worries and cares depart.
Just yield yourself to the Almighty above,
And let Him hold you secure in His love.

For life on earth grows more involved,
With endless problems that can’t be solved.
But Allah only ask us to do our best,
Then He will take over and finish the rest.

So when you are tired, discouraged and blue,
There is always one door that is open to you.
And that is the door to The House of Salaah,
And you’ll find Allah waiting to meet you there.

And The House of Salaah is no further away,
Than the quiet spot where you kneel and pray.
For the heart is a shrine when Allah is there,
As we place ourselves in His loving care.

And He hears every prayer & answers each one,
When we Pray in His name – Thy will be done.
The burdens that seemed too heavy to bear,
Are lifted away on the wings of a Salaah.

Heads Down On Earth…..

Heads Down On Earth…..

Non Muslim scientist proved we are more electrically charged now than ever before;

 Due to the electromagnetic radiations from the things around us like:

  • Mobiles 
  • TV
  • AC
  • Microwaves etc…

If we don’t want this radiation to harm us, we should place our forehead on the floor more than once a day, as the earth has the tendency to absorb radiation. It is also proven that it’s more effective when your forehead is placed on the sand!

We Muslims put our heads down on Earth more than 34 times daily in Salaah (or we should) Subhaan’Allah!

There is always wisdom behind Allah Almighty’s commandments. 

So think about….

 فَبِأَىِّ ءَالَآءِ رَبِّكُمَا تُكَذِّبَانِ

“Which of the favours of your Lord will you deny?” (Surah Rahman)