Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Quran Lecture: The Story of Qarun

In the Name of Allah, The Most Kind The Most Merciful

Here is a lecture of the story of Qarun, which can be found in the Quran in Surah 28, Ayats 76 - 83. Click here to listen. Length is about 20 minutes.

76. Qarun was doubtless, of the people of Moses; but he acted insolently towards them: such were the treasures We had bestowed on him that their very keys would have been a burden to a body of strong men, behold, his people said to him: "Exult not, for Allah loveth not those who exult (in riches).

77. "But seek, with the (wealth) which Allah has bestowed on thee, the Home of the Hereafter, nor forget thy portion in this world: but do thou good, as Allah has been good to thee, and seek not (occasions for) mischief in the land: for Allah loves not those who do mischief."

78. He said: "This has been given to me because of a certain knowledge which I have." Did he not know that Allah had destroyed, before him, (whole) generations,- which were superior to him in strength and greater in the amount (of riches) they had collected? but the wicked are not called (immediately) to account for their sins.

79. So he went forth among his people in the (pride of his wordly) glitter. Said those whose aim is the Life of this World: "Oh! that we had the like of what Qarun has got! for he is truly a lord of mighty good fortune!"

80. But those who had been granted (true) knowledge said: "Alas for you! The reward of Allah (in the Hereafter) is best for those who believe and work righteousness: but this none shall attain, save those who steadfastly persevere (in good)."

81. Then We caused the earth to swallow up him and his house; and he had not (the least little) party to help him against Allah, nor could he defend himself.

82. And those who had envied his position the day before began to say on the morrow: "Ah! it is indeed Allah Who enlarges the provision or restricts it, to any of His servants He pleases! had it not been that Allah was gracious to us, He could have caused the earth to swallow us up! Ah! those who reject Allah will assuredly never prosper."

83. That Home of the Hereafter We shall give to those who intend not high- handedness or mischief on earth: and the end is (best) for the righteous.

84. If any does good, the reward to him is better than his deed; but if any does evil, the doers of evil are only punished (to the extent) of their deeds.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Quran Lecture: Sending Blessings on the Prophet

In the Name of Allah, The Most Kind The Most Merciful

Alhamdolillah, I have started giving Quran lectures at my local Islamic center and will be posting them Inshallah. Here is a lecture of Surah Al Ahzab, Ayat 56:

Allah and His angels send blessings on the Prophet: O ye that believe! Send ye blessings on him, and salute him with all respect.

Click here to listen. Length is about 25 minutes.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Call For Comments!

In the Name of Allah, the Most Kind the Most Merciful

I see from the feed that we have a lot of visitors, from all over the place Mashallah! Please leave a comment, even if it's just to say 'I agree' or 'I disagree'! I have no ego to bruise... if what I am saying is correct, it's from Allah, and if I'm wrong, it means I need to improve! May Allah reward you all.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

An email from a Buddhist and a reply

In the Name of Allah, The Most Kind The Most Merciful

Buddhist: The objective including mental development in Buddhism is to realise Anicca (Impermanence)of everything created, including heaven and hell. Thereby letting go of everything including the 'vehicle' that took you to the religion (Buddhism). The objective in Islam is the ultimate purification to reach heaven. Cant think of a proper example....lets take 1 -9. 9 is the highest number. So (my understanding and I mean no offence) is that Islam will take you to 9. The highest possible. In the case of Buddhism it would take you to 0. Where nothing remains..but it is still something. if you know what I mean...

Reply: According to Islamic belief, when all is said and done... when you have lived your life in this world and got whatever you wanted out of it... if you make it to paradise and get whatever you want from paradise... for the believer, there is one final but great thing. The believer actually gets to see his Creator, face to face. Every pleasure the believer has ever felt, whether mental or physical, whether in this life or in paradise, is practically nothing when compared with this pleasure. To meet your Creator... the one who has created this huge universe, which is at least 14.5 billion years wide, while you are a tiny speck in the universe... the one who has been living eternally, while you lived for maybe 70 years... the amazing honor you get when you, a simple piece of flesh and bone which came from a drop of sperm, meet the One who not only created you, but the whole of humanity, the earth itself, the sun, the solar system, the galaxies, the whole universe... the feeling you get from that cannot be measured on any scale. Here is the hadith describing this:

When the inhabitants of Paradise enter Paradise, God, the Glorious and Exalted, will say to them: `Do you wish me to give you anything more?' They will reply: `Have You not made our faces bright? Have You not brought us into Paradise and delivered us from the Hell?' And God will remove the Veil. The (dwellers of Paradise) will feel that they have not been awarded anything dearer to them than looking at their Lord.

May Allah grant us all the reward of looking at Him, Ameen.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Do you want to be a millionaire?

In the Name of Allah, The Most Kind The Most Merciful

Amazingly, this article was published on Forbes!

Like the Prophet(SAW) said, Riches does not mean having a great amount of property; real wealth is self-contentment.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Thoughts at a Janaza

In the Name of Allah, The Most Kind The Most Merciful

I always try avoid being harsh, but at the same time we need to be realistic. I attended a Janaza (Funeral) Prayer yesterday for a friend of a family friend, and wanted to share some of the thoughts I had throughout the day.

It was a sister who has passed away (may Allah have abundant mercy on her, Ameen). She was in her 30's, and had been battling cancer for a few years. She left behind a husband and a 14 year old girl, may Allah grant them patience and comfort. So I guess the first thought that comes to mind: this can happen to any of us, anytime. None of us should think that we'll live forever, or that things like cancer can't happen to us.

Monday, December 7, 2009

A visit to a Jewish Temple

In the name of Allah, The most Kind The Most Merciful

A couple of days ago, I and a few members of our local community visited a Jewish temple to give them a cake for Eid. Every Eid, we try and give cakes to the local Jewish and Christian congregations. It was an interesting experience. We got there early, and attended the last few minutes of their service (had to put on one of those caps). They were bowing a lot, which reminded me of the verse in Surah Al Baqarah addressed to the Children of Israel : 'And bow down with those who bow down'. There are many types of Jews out there, these were 'in the middle' : not the orthodox ones with the black coats and long beards, and not the extremely liberal ones. We were greeted very warmly, they seemed genuinely pleased to see us. After the service, they allowed me to speak for a few minutes. I spoke about our local community, and how we give cakes to our faith based neighbours on our festivals. I explained briefly the significance of Eid Al Ahda, without explicitly saying who was the son that Ibrhaim (AS) sacrificed. Rather than say the term 'Jews', I stuck to the term 'Children of Israel'. One of the things I said was that the sacrifice of Ibrhaim (AS) makes us think: 'Do not think what God can do for you, think what you can do for God'. I mentiond that the cake we got was kosher (laughter from the audience). I ended by saying that I hoped we could work together in those areas where we have common goals, like the existence of God, the sanctity of marriage, the sanctity of unborn life, and respect for parents. The Rabbi endorsed this after my speech, talking about working together to counter secular values.

Afterwards, we got to partake with the congregation with the aforementioned cake and coffee (good thing, I had not had time for breakfast). We had some interesting discussions. I was able to talk to a couple of people and explain to them that Moses is the most often mentioned person in the Quran. I learnt about the differences between kosher and halal meat, and why meat and dairy cannot be mixed. Throughout the whole time, we kept getting thanked for coming to visit, and for the brief speech I made. I got an invitation from a woman who runs an interfaith organization which works towards common goals. And I got to talk to a Jewish guy who has written a book about Evolution and Genesis, where he says there is no problem accepting both. It seems to boil down to the meaning of the hebrew word 'yaum', the same as the Arabic word, and whether it literally means 'day' or means 'period'.

I left feeling that we had got benefit out of it. May Allah accept this from us, and keep us sincere in our intentions, Ameen.