Saturday, March 31, 2007

The True Solution

Once there were two students walking along a river. One of them just so happened to glance over at something floating in the river. It did not take long for him to realize that it was a baby! Without hesitation he jumped into the river to save the infant from drowning. When he jumped in he realized that there were at least ten more in his immediate area, all of them screaming and crying as they bobbed by.

Quite naturally he started screaming to the other student. "Help! C'mon man! Get in here! Look at all of these babies! We gotta help 'em!" The other student, however, kept walking upstream, despite noticing a river full of babies, with more and more floating downstream.

For every one that the first student saved, eight passed him. There were just too many."C'mon man! Don't you have a heart?! I can't grab all of these babies alone!" The second student replied, "I'm going upstream to find out who's throwing all of these babies in the river."

The point of this short story is to demonstrate the importance of going to the source of the problem to have a greater impact. Many people address each of society's social ailments as separate entities. Thus we find numerous organizations that target a specific poison; The solution to racism, spouse abuse, child abuse, crime, pollution, alcohol abuse, drug addiction, and other social ills is one.

Each problem does not require its own organizations and groups to eliminate it. The solutions for all of these is one. That one, is Islam.

Sayings of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh)

  • There are three roots to Iman (Faith): not to trouble him who shall say 'there is no deity but God;' not to think him an unbeliever on account of one fault; and not to discard him for one crime.
  • When asked to mention one of the most excellent parts of Iman (Faith) Muhammad said, "To love him who loveth God, and hate him who hateth God, and to keep your tongue employed in repeating the name of God." What else? He said, "To do unto all men as you would wish to have done unto you, and to reject for others what you would reject for yourself."
  • Speak to men according to their mental capacities, for if you speak all things to all men, some cannot understand you, and so fall into errors.
  • Verily your deeds will be brought back to you, as if you yourself were the creator of your own punishment.
  • Feed the hungry and visit the sick, and free the captive, if he be unjustly confined. Assist any person oppressed, whether Muslim or non-Muslim.
  • Do a good deed for every bad deed that it may blot out the latter.
  • All Muslims are as one body. If a man complaineth of a pain in his head, his whole body complaineth; and if his eye complaineth, his whole body complaineth.
  • Assist your Muslim brother, whether he be an oppressor or oppressed. "But how shall we do it when he is an oppressor?" enquired a companion. Muhammad replied, "Assisting an oppressor consists in forbidding and witholding him from oppression."
  • Ye will not enter Paradise until ye have faith, and ye will not complete your faith until ye love one another.
  • Verily, each of you is a mirror to his brother: then if he seeth a vice in his brother he must tell him to get rid of it.

Read hundreds more: Sayings of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh)

Friday, March 30, 2007

The Value of Honesty

Narrated Abu Umamah (r.a.) Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said:

a) I guarantee a home in Paradise for a person who gives up arguments and disputes even if he is on the truth.

b) And (I (also) guarantee) a home in the middle of Paradise for a person who gives up lying (false statements) even while joking.

c) And (I (also) gurantee) a home in the highest part of Paradise for a person who has a high standard of character.”

This hadith is quoted by Abu Dawud, Al Trimidhi, An-Nasa’I and Ibn Majah

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Junaid Jamshed pays tribute to Bob Woolmer

Becoming a better Muslim

What we can do...
  • First of all, acknowledge that nobody is perfect, we all have our strengths and weaknesses. E.g. some people are disciplined and always pray on time (strength), some people can't respect their parents (weakness), and others can't stop back-biting (weakness).
  • Then, start to analyse our weaknesses and highlight them in our minds, so that we are aware of them in a very clear manner. This is important because sometimes we don't really know our own weaknesses (maybe because we are afraid to face them). Don't hesitate to write things down on a piece of paper, it will help you in some way or another.
  • Over a period of time, start to think about ways in which you can stop yourself from repeating the same mistakes time and time again, i.e. the weaknesses you've identified.
  • Try to reform and gradually bring about positive change, but be prepared for failure.
  • In case of failure, accept that you've not been able to fight the weakness and try again.
  • Trying again is what makes you feel more confident, like when you play a computer game - you don't abandon it when it says 'Game Over'.
  • Keep trying and don't let yourself feel that you cannot do it, because when you give up - you are taking the advice of your open enemy - the Shaytaan.
  • Example: Identified Weakness: You don't read the Q'uran often enough. Why don't you read the Q'uran often enough? How can you change this? When will you change this? Set an achievable target for the next few weeks. Always remind yourself that this is one of your weaknesses and you're trying to do something about it. If you don't manage to meet your set target, don't ignore the issue, keep thinking about it. The Shaytaan will try to convince you to put this matter to the back of your head (so you forget about it). But be clear in your mind that you are going to continue your struggle until you overcome your weakness.
  • Use this technique for both weaknesses and strengths (monitor your strengths also, make sure that they remain).
  • InshaAllah the fact that you are constantly thinking about 'enhancing' your Imaan will help you to become successful. Remember, ignoring an issue is the worst way of addressing it.
  • Be active and positive, and enjoy the process of making yourself a better Muslim.