"To the men, especially those who are religious - before looking right and left, look at yourself. How do you view women? Your night prayers, your daily fasts, your memorization of scripture, your charity, your pilimigrage, your knowledge and your teaching, your struggles for the sake of God - everything you do - won’t get you to a point where you are something before God if you don’t let all of that pass through the gateway of benevolence to women." Habib ‘Ali Zain Al Abideen Al Jifri
Travel not from creature to creature, otherwise you will be like a donkey at the mill. Rather go from creatures to the Creator.
- Ibn Ata’Allah rahimahu Llah
"Some people remember Allah when they are eating while some people think about food when they are praying. Both eat and pray, but they are as far apart from each other as the heavens are from the earth."
— Al Habib Umar
My Ramadan Prayer
As we stand on the verge of beginning the great fast,
let us pray that the blessings we enjoy are decreed to last.
Let us pray for the people, who have lost their homes, fields and cattle in the flood, that they are patient and see their sins washed away by torrents of forgiveness and divine love.
Let us pray for all of those living in lands that have been invaded and occupied, that their resolve for deliverance is not weakened nor their hearts rendered cold, callous and dry.
Let us pray for the elders who have seen only war as successive decades pass by, that they are not so traumatized that they cannot find tears to cry.
Let us pray for the fathers, who watch as their sons are mercilessly dragged away, that they will live to see the justice of a better day.
Let us pray for our sisters, who with such great dignity represent all of us, that they never lose sight of the fact that they are carrying a divine trust.
Let us pray for the teachers, who toil sometimes in unbearable situations, that they remain strong and undaunted in their commitment to future generations.
Let us pray for the believers everywhere, that they are the recipients of divine aid and celestial care.
Let us pray for the babies, be they little boys or girls, that they will be blessed to inherit a saner, safer and more secure world.
Let us pray for this troubled nation we live in, to realize that we cannot forever escape the wages of our sins.
Let us pray for the children, whose mothers or fathers have been deported, that their dreams will not be deferred nor their hearts distorted.
Let us pray for the legions, who for someone’s profits have been incarcerated, that through the message of the Prophet their minds can be liberated.
Let us pray for all of the boys and girls in the ‘hood, to learn that virtue is its own reward, and that its recompense is always good.
Let us pray for even the malicious fools, who picket Masjids and burn the Qur’an, that they repent, are guided, and come to know the blessings of Ramadan.
There is some philosophy behind hardships and tribulations. They are manifestations of God’s mercy with his believing servants. Shaykh Muhammad Sa’id Ramadan Al Bouti [Hāfizullāh-Ta‘ālā]
Isn’t it ironic how it is the very blessings God gifts us which deceive us away from Him?
Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on earth. – Muhammad Ali
"Every civilization: Hindu, Buddhist, Confucianist, Christian, Jewish and Muslim, all of them understood that learning was to make a better human being, learning was not to make more money; it was to make a better human being." — Shaykh Hamza Yusuf
The Messenger of Allah (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) said: “Whoever says, ‘Subhan Allahi wa bi hamdihi’ one hundred times, his sins will be forgiven even if they were like the foam of the sea.” [Sunan Ibn Majah]
“Subhan Allahi wa bi hamdihi” means that Allah (subhana wa ta’ala) is pure of defects and praise belongs to Him alone.
To really understand that Allah (subhana wa ta’ala) is pure of defects implies not ascribing any shortcomings to Him. We think that we don’t ascribe any shortcoming to Him but when we question fate, when we talk about “untimely deaths,” or when it comes to adopting a Hukm Shari and we don’t, justifying our stance with “We know our situation better” we are in fact attributing defects to Allah (subhana wa ta’ala). With such statements we are implying that Allah doesn’t know better, that His wisdom is not infinitely more than ours, that His love of us isn’t infinitely more than our love of ourselves. With such statements we negate the Subhan Allahs that roll off our tongues.
Nothing is worthy of praise except Allah, since anything praiseworthy is so because He made it so. It is only a minute fraction of the good and beauty that is with Him.
Thus, when we say “Subhan Allahi wa bi hamdihi” we should keep its meaning in mind and feel it in our hearts. We should stop for a moment to think about what we are saying, so that we don’t live our lives in contradiction to it.
Saying “Subhan Allahi wa bi hamdihi” a hundred times causes minor sins to be forgiven no matter how many they are in number. For the expiation of major sins it is necessary that we be aware of the mistake we are asking forgiveness for and intend to avoid committing the same in future.
I wonder what people would’ve looked like if we had been allowed to decide on our own looks, yet not being allowed to see what others chose.