BISMILLAH AR-RAHMAN AR-RAHEEM!

AS SALAAMU ALAIKUM WA RAHMATULLAHI WA BARAKATUH!

MAY ALLAH ALLOW THIS BLOG TO BENEFIT ALL OF OUR MUSLIM BROTHERS & SISTERS! AMEEN!

Friday, October 22, 2010

How to Urge Others to Make Duaa

As Salaamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuh!

Insha Allah this finds you in the best of health and Iman.


This is a very beneficial resource I found online, with several chapters on Duaa.  Below is Chapter 1.

 http://www.duas.org/od/chap1.htm

HOW TO URGE OTHERS TO MAKE DUAA

DUA AS RECOMMENDED BY INTELLECT
DUA AS RECOMMENDED BY QURANIC VERSES AND HADITHS
  • Why our Duas are not answered
  • Advantages of Dua
  • Caution
  • Admonition in case Duas are not answered

Friday Night: A Perfect Time for Duaa

As Salaamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuh!

Insha Allah this finds you in the best of health and Iman.

“Throughout Friday night Allah (swt) calls:

-Isn’t there any believing servant who calls upon Me until before dawn so that I will grant his worldly and spiritual request?
-Isn’t there any believing servant who repents his sins before down so that I will forgive him?
-Isn’t there any believing servant whose sustenance is meager and asks Me to increase it before dawn so that I will increase his sustenance?
-Isn’t there any ailing and believing servant who asks Me to heal him before dawn so that I will heal him?
-Isn’t there any imprisoned servant who asks Me to free him from prison so that I will free him from prison?
-Isn’t there any oppressed believing servant who asks Me to take his right from the oppressor before dawn so that I will help him and restore his right?
  Imam Baqer or Imam Sadeq (A.S.) has said:
*   * 

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Red Lentil Soup Recipe

As Salaamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuh!

Insha Allah this finds you in the best of health and Iman.



1 cup dried red lentils
1 medium onion, diced
1 TB olive oil
2 chicken (or vegetable) bouillon cubes
2 bay leaves
1 ½ tsp cumin (or use curry powder for a different flavor if you make this every night)
¼ tsp black pepper
3 cups hot water
Fresh lemon and parsley (optional, for garnish)

In a saucepot, heat the oil on medium heat and add the onion; sauté for 5 minutes or until the onion is slightly softened.  Add the lentils, bouillon cubes, bay leaves, cumin, black pepper, and hot water; cover the pot and bring the soup up to a rolling boil, then turn down the heat and let it boil gently for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Taste the soup for salt and pepper.  Serve garnished with fresh lemon and a sprig of fresh parsley if desired.




Saturday, September 18, 2010

Purification - Seeking Tawba/Tauba (Repentance)

As Salaamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuh!

Insha Allah this finds you in the best of health and Iman.


Iblis, better known as Shaitan, worshipped Allah (swt) the best compared to any of the Angels.  Even though Iblis was a Jinn and not an Angel, Allah (swt) put him in the same category.  When Allah (swt) commanded the Angels to do something, Iblis was included in with this command.

Iblis disobeyed Allah (swt) when the Angels were commanded to bow down to Adam.  Iblis thought he was too good to bow down, then Allah (swt) cast him away.  Iblis or Shaitan, never asked Allah (swt) for forgiveness because he thought he didn't need to repent, he thought he was too good to ask for repentance.

The Root Word for Iblis in Arabic means "one who gives up hope".

We as humans and servants of Allah (swt) have to admit when we make mistakes.  We cannot ask for forgiveness unless we admit we made the mistake & not make excuses for it.  Allah (swt) wants to forgive us & he enjoys forgiving but we have to ask for forgiveness with sincerity.  Allah (swt) is waiting for us to ask for forgiveness.

Sometimes we feel that we don't need to ask for forgiveness, that Allah (swt) will forgive us anyway.  THAT IS THE SAME MENTALLITY THAT IBLIS/SHAITAN HAD.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Straightening the Rows: From the Perfection of Salah

As Salaamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuh!

Insha Allah this finds you in the best of health and Iman.



 

Straightening the Rows: From the Perfection of Salaah

Thursday, 18 February 2010
Compiled and Translated by Moosaa RichardsonThe following addresses some of the conclusions reached in the book "Laa Jadeed fee Ahkaam as-Salaat" of Shaykh Bakr Aboo Zayd (may Allaah have Mercy on him) in regards to perfecting the straightness of the rows.
 

The obvious meaning of the prohibition: 'do not leave gaps for the shaytaan' is to not leave any space, or to stand next to each other, connected
 

The following addresses some of the conclusions reached in the book "Laa Jadeed fee Ahkaam as-Salaat" of Shaykh Bakr Aboo Zayd (may Allaah have Mercy on him):

In the Name of Allaah, the Most Merciful...

May His Salaat and Salaam be upon the Final Messenger...

1. The obvious meaning of the order: "fill the gaps" is to not leave any space between people when praying.  When two people stand side by side and connect to each other - their shoulders and feet connect.  If they were to move even closer; their hips, (sides of) knees, and (sides of) calves touch.  (Try it) Oddly shaped people (obese or otherwise) may not be able.

2. The obvious meaning of the prohibition: "do not leave gaps for the shaytaan" is to not leave any space, or to stand next to each other: connected.

3. The obvious understanding of the Companions when addressed with this speech was to not leave any space, to the point that they joined their ankles, knees, and shoulders, as narrated explicitly by the likes of Anas and Nu'maan (may Allaah be pleased with them both).

4. Their understanding and application was witnessed by the Prophet (sallallahau 'alayhe wa sallam) who did not rebuke them for extremism or harshness.  This is something called "taqreer" and thus becomes legislation, and can be easily identified as the correct understanding.

5. It is possible to join knees when standing, so to claim that this is impossible and necessitates ta'weel (leaving the obvious understanding) of the action of the Companions is false.  (Again - try it)  Of course the whole knee is not intended (that would be impossible), rather it is a case of "itlaaq al-kull wa iraadatul-ba'dh".  The intended meaning is the sides of the knees, as is obvious.

6. al-Khattaabee's words in al-Ma'aalam (1/184) "wa laa yahaak-ku bimankibihi mankiba saahibhi" do not in any way imply that one should leave spaces in the row.  It means that they should not "grind" their shoulders together in a way that causes friction, and thus a distraction for one's prayers.  Joining shoulders does not necessitate any friction between them.  Actually the hadeeth, "The best of you are the softest (or easiest) with their shoulders in prayer." is a proof that the shoulders are indeed supposed to be connected in the row, since how could a person be described as being "soft-shouldered" while he is not touching anything?!

7. Ibn Hajr's words in Fat-hul-Baaree (2/211) are clear in conveying how important it is to not leave gaps.  Nothing he said could be interpreted as an indication that we are to leave gaps.  His reference to the actions of the Comapanions (joining their shoulders and feet) as a "mubaalaghah" does not in any way mean a negative mubaalaghah (extremism, excessiveness, etc.)  Rather it is a praiseworthy mubaalaghah (devout fulfillment of an order), like in the hadeeth "Baalighoo fil-istinshaaq..."  (Sniff in a lot of water when performing wudhoo...)  Had they engaged in a blameworthy mubaalaghah, how could the Messenger of Allaah (sallallaahu 'alayhe wa sallam) remain silent about it?!

8. al-Bukhaaree called the chapter he collected this hadeeth in: "The chapter of joining the shoulders and feet together in the row".  This is the obvious meaning understood from the reports of the Companions actions, as mentioned.

9. Joining the feet and shoulders does not necessitate being "overly obsessed" with it, nor being distracted from one's devotion to the prayer.  People who claim this are often used to praying without anyone touching them, so a simple touch disturbs them.

10. Swaying in the prayer line has become common, both front to back swaying, and side to side.  Joining the shoulders in the row is the prophetic solution for this modern day innovation that comes from the Jews and their manner of prayer.  This swaying is a kind of heedlessness that desperately needs a solution, as pointed out by the scholars, including Shaykh Bakr Aboo Zayd (may Allaah have Mercy on him) himself in his book Tas-heeh ad-Du'aa'.

11. Joining the feet and shoulders does not mean hurting people.  There are people who hurt the Muslims by literally "jamming" their ankle bone to their brother's ankle bone and maybe even grinding it, perhaps excessively.  This is a clear contradiction to the sense of ease and tranquility we are to establish in the prayer.

12. Many people are confused about how to line up for prayer.  Some people draw a line and ask the people to put their toes on it.  Others say we should put our heels on it.  This is a practice that was not done in the time of the Prophet (sallallaahu 'alayhe wa sallam), one that has arisen as a solution to a problem that exists because we left the original guidance of the Messenger (sallallaahu 'alayhe wa sallam) and do not join our shoulders and ankles together in the row.  A row with people's ankles and shoulders connected is a straight and connected row and usually only needs a few minor adjustments before starting the prayer.

13. Anas' statement about the manner of lining up that "If I would do this with any of them today, they would flee like wild mules!" proves that he was describing the actual physical joining of the feet and shoulders, not an allegorical one.
 
Two more benefits related to the topic:

1. Stand naturally, feet shoudler width apart.The distance between a person's two shoulders is not something he can control or stretch out.  Thus, the correct amount of space for a person to take in the row is what he needs to place his shoulder to his neighbor's shoulder on both sides.  Some people may stretch their feet wider thinking to be filling a gap, while in fact they are not!  When a person widens his stance (wider than shoulder width), he will likely not connect his shoulder to anyone's shoulder.  So it can be known from this that a person should stand naturally, feet about shoulder width apart.  The idea of the shoulder being the most important thing to connect is indicated in the hadeeth "Align yourselves by your shoulders and fill the gaps."
 
2. Another harm from not implementing the Sunnah, and another invention to replace itPeople who wear things that limit their vision in prayer, like some styles of Arab headwear, like the shimaagh or ghutrah, those who also insist on not connecting themselves to the row, may stand at or near the end of a row, and be left heedless that someone has left the row (to renew wudhoo', etc.) and there is a need to move over.  Since he can not see sideways becsause of the headwear, and his shoulder is not connected to the row, he may only notice when moving into rukoo' that the row has actually abandoned him and he is off by himself on the side of the row totally disconnected!  While the one who is connected knows of this issue because he can feel the absence the one standing next to him.  In fact, the people who demand that gaps be left in the row have invented a custom to help solve this issue: they actually tug on the clothes of a person to tell him he needs to move over, and they take it as a kind of duty to notify the one next him!  This is an additional action in the prayer that is not necessary when people pray together in the way done by the Messenger of Allaah (sallallaahu 'alayhe wa sallam) and his companions.

And Allaah knows best. 
 
 
 

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Duaa is Answered on Wednesday, Insha Allah!

As Salaamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuh!

Insha Allah this finds you in the best of health and Iman.


Dua is Answered on Wednesday(Inshallah)

جابر بن عبد الله يقول : دَعَا رَسُولُ اللهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ فِي هَذَا المَسْجِدِ ، مَسْجِدُ الفَتْحِ ، يَوْمَ الاثْنَيْنَ وَيَوْمَ الثَلاَثَاءِ وَيَوْمَ الأَرْبَعَاءِ ، فَاسْتَجَيْبَ لَهُ بَيْنَ الصَّلاَتَيْنَ مِنْ يَوْمَ الأَرْبَعَاءِ قَالَ جَابِرُ : وَلَمْ يَنْزِلْ بِي أَمْرٌ مُهِّمٌ غَائِظٌ إِلاَ تُوَّخَيْتُ تِلْكَ السَّاعَةَ ، فَدَعَوتُ اللهَ فِيهِ بَيْنَ الصَّلاَتَيْنَ يَومَ الأَرْبَعَاءِ فِي تِلْكَ السَّاعَةَ ، إِلاَ عَرَفْتُ الإِجَابَةَ

“Jabir Ibn ‘Abdullah (may Allaah be pleased with him )said, “ The Messenger of Allaah(peace and blessings be upon him) supplicated to Allaah in this masjid(Masjid Al-Fath) on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. His dua was answered on Wednesday between the prayers of Thur and Asr. Jabir(may Allaah be pleased with him)said,” There wasn’t anything that was crucially important for me to have solved, except I called on Allaah during that hour of the day between Thur and Asr knowing He would answer.”

Collected by Imam Al-Bukhari in Adab Al-Mufrad (703)
Graded Hasan by Shaykh Al-Albani(May Allaah have mercy upon him) in Saheeh Adab Al-Mufrad.

Shaykh Hussain Awayaasha(may Allaah preserve him )said in his explanation of Saheeh Adab Al-Mufrad.
“The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings be upon him)supplicated to Allaah in this masjid(Masjid Al-Fath )on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday” Masjid Al-Fath: is a masjid located on the eastside at the top of a mountain stump. A person can ascend to this masjid by two routes; one on the east and the other on the north side. This is the general meaning of Masjid al-Fath. It has also been said that Masjid Al-Fath is Masjid Ahzab or a Masjid on High ground. [ Fadl 2/174]
“His dua was answered on Wednesday between the prayers of Thur and Asr” .

Shaykh Al-Albani(may Allaah shower him with mercy) commented on this saying: If this companion wouldn’t have narrated to us that the prophet(peace and blessings be upon him)made Dua to Allaah during this hour we wouldn’t have known. The person present witnesses what the absent person doesn’t. This hadeeth has significant meaning;since Jabir narrated the information when exactly his dua was answered. And this shows that the Dua for the Messenger(peace and blessings be upon him)was answered at that hour during Wednesday. Consequently Jabir began to do that same thing he saw Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) do on Wednesday between Thur and Asr. End of Quote from the book.

Ibn Taymeeyah(728H) said in his book “ Iqtedahus Siratul Mustaqeem (1/433), ” A group of our companions and other people act by this hadeeth. They see to it that they call on Allaah during this time; as narrated by Jabir(may Allaah be pleased with him). The place where Jabir made Dua to Allaah isn’t mentioned, but the time period in which he did is mentioned.

The Importance of Dhikr!

As Salaamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuh!

Insha Allah this finds you in the best of health and Iman.


Dhikr (Remembrance) in the Quran and Sunnah

"Those who believe (in the Oneness of Allâh), and whose hearts find rest in the remembrance of Allâh, Verily, in the remembrance of Allâh do hearts find rest" (Surah ar'Ra'd 13:28)

"O you who believe! Celebrate the praises of Allah, and do so often; and glorify Him morning and evening." (Holy Qur'an 33:41-41)

Allah (SWT) has commanded us to remember him always. He says:  "Remember Me, I shall remember you." (Qur'an 2:152)

Allah(SWT) says in the Quran Al-Kareem: "And establish regular prayer, for prayer restrains from shameful and unjust deeds, and remembrance of Allah is the greatest thing in life, without doubt." (Surah al-Ankabut 29:45)

"When any group of men remember Allah, angels surround them and mercy covers them, tranquillity descends upon them, and Allah mentions them to those who are with Him." (Reported by Abu Hurairiah)

The Prophet (SAW) has described many forms of dhikr and their importance.

Among them is what is described in this hadith: "And whoever says Subhan Allah wa bihamdihi (Glorified is Allah with all praise due to Him) a hundred times during a day, will have all sins wiped off even if they were as numerous as the foam on the surface of the sea." (Bukhari)

"If anyone extols Allah (Subhan Allah) after every prayer thirty-three times, and praises Allah (Al Hamd-u-Lillah) thirty-three times, and declares His Greatness (Ahhah-u-Akbar) thirty-three times, ninety-nine times in all, and say to complete a hundred: "There is no god but Allah, having no partner with Him, to Him belongs sovereignty and to Him to praise due, and He is Potent over everything," his sins will be forgiven even if these are as abundant as the foam of the sea.
" (Tirmidhi and Ahmad)

The Prophet (SAW) said, "The contrast between a person who glorifies Allah and one who does not remember Him is like that between the living and the dead." (Bukhari & Muslim)

The people said, "O Allah's Apostle! The rich people have got the highest degrees of prestige and the permanent pleasures (in this life and the life to come in the Hereafter)." He said, "How is that?" They said, "The rich pray as we pray, and strive in Allah's Cause as we do, and spend from their surplus wealth in charity, while we have no wealth (to spend likewise)." He said, "Shall I not tell you a thing, by doing which, you will catch up with those who are ahead of you and supersede those who will come after you; and nobody will be able to do such a good deed as you do except the one who does the same (deed as you do). That deed is to recite 'Subhan Allah ten times, and 'Al-Hamdulillah ten times, and 'Allahu Akbar' ten times after every prayer." (Bukhari) “Those who are admitted to paradise will not regret over anything of this world, except the time spent without dhikr in their life.” (Bayhaqi) 

Ibn Umar has narrated that "The Prophet (SAW) said, 'When you pass by a garden of Paradise, settle therein.' The companions asked, 'What are the gardens, O Messenger of Allah?' The Prophet (SAW) replied "The assemblies or circles of dhikr. There are some angels of Allah who go about looking for such assemblies of dhikr, and when they find them they surround them.'" The Prophet (SAW) said: "If people sit in an assembly in which they do not remember Allah nor invoke blessing on the Prophet, it will be a cause of grief for them on the Day of Judgment."

(Narrated by Abu Hurairiah) The Prophet (SAW) said "Allah (SWT) says: 'I am to my servant as he expects of Me, I am with him when he remembers Me. If he remembers Me in his heart, I remember him in My heart, and if he remembers Me in an assembly, I mention him in an assembly better than his, and if he draws nearer to Me a hand's span, I draw nearer to him an arm's length, and if he comes to me walking I come to him running." 

Monday, May 10, 2010

Modest clothing is required for Brothers just like it's required for Sisters!

As Salaamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuh!

Insha Allah this finds you in the best of health and Iman.
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Okay, this is a topic that sometimes bothers me when I see it not being followed by Brothers.  Too often I see the Sister wearing Hijab and Jilbab, completely covered like how she is supposed to be................and then on her arm or at her side is her husband who is wearing tight clothing with the shirt tucked into his jeans that shows his body.  I have even seen Brothers wearing really short shorts that show their thighs!  Just as Sisters are not allowed to show our shape to the general public or to non-mahrams, the Brothers are supposed to follow this as well.  Now, I am not saying that all Brothers dress like this.  Alhamdulillah, I have seen many Brothers in thobes, Brothers wearing jeans but with a long shirt over them, etc.   Sister's if your mahrams are not covering like how they are supposed to, please encourage them to do so.  This will benefit them as well as you Insha Allah.


This is not Hijab because the navel area is showing:


This is not Hijab because the jeans are too tight showing all shape:


This is not Hijab because the thighs are showing:


Reported Muhammad Jahsh, "The Messenger of Allah, upon whom be peace, passed by Ma'mar while his thighs were uncovered. He said, to him, 'O Ma'mar, cover your thighs, for they are (part of the) 'aurah." This is related by Ahmad, al-Hakim and al-Bukhari in Tareekh and in mu'allaq form in his Sahih.

Reported Jurhad, "The Messenger of Allah passed by me when the cloak I was wearing did not cover my thigh. He said, 'Cover your thigh, for it (is part of the) 'aurah." This is related by Ahmad, Abu Dawud and at-Tirmidhi, who called it hassan, and by al-Bukhari in mu'allaq form in the Sahih

This is a really good article titled:
"The Fiqh of Covering One's Nakedness (awrah): a Detailed Explanation"
http://qa.sunnipath.com/issue_view.asp?HD=1&ID=2039&CATE=128

This is a Question & Answer from Sheik Muhammad S. Al-Munajjid
http://www.islam-qa.com/en/ref/150

Men's 'awrah and wearing pants with shirt tucked in
Is it permissible for a Muslim man to wear his shirt tucked in his pants, showing the shape of his legs, buttocks, etc., especially in some countries where women are not ashamed to look at them? And when they perform prayer, shouldn't they be wearing a long shirt covering their private parts while they prostrate?

Praise be to Allah.
The `awrah (private parts to be necessarily covered) for men includes what is between the navel and the knees as stated by the Prophet SAWS (peace be upon him), so covering it is obligatory according to Islamic law. Wearing shorts that disclose the thighs or show the shape of the buttocks, does not cover the `awrah. Neither does a dress that is transparent and displays skin complexion, nor a tight dress that shows the size, shape or bends of the `awrah. All of this is prohibited (haraam) in front of people whether the women are ashamed of looking at it or not (as asked in the question). If the trousers (or pants) are wide enough and not tight, then one may tuck his shirt in it as long as it does not display his `awrah. Covering the `awrah is obligatory during the prayer and outside it. What many people do is cover their `awrah while going to prayer but are negligent of it outside the prayer. This is a clear mistake and a wrong act which happens due to lack of understanding or as a result of a misunderstanding of the matter.

The Sister's awrah is from head to toe.  
The Brother's awrah is from his navel to his knees.


Now Sisters, it's your turn!  I have seen many sisters wearing the head scarf (hijab) wrong.  I have seen sisters draping them in a way that the entire front of the neck is shown, the ears are showing, some even wear them like a headband, some wear the hijab very loosely showing lots of hair in the front.  Below are pictures of what I am talking about.  Some even wear tight jeans with short shirts that barely cover anything and show all the shape.  Some sisters wear short sleeved shirt and a head scarf.  Some sisters wear short length dresses that show the lower leg.  Many sisters are wearing the trendy "Maxi Dresses" with a long sleeve shirt underneath.  Granted the Maxi Dress is long enough but it hugs the breast area accentuating the chest area!  This is wrong.  Honestly, what is the point of even wearing a head scarf if you are going to dress like this?!  YOU CAN BE STILL BE FASHIONABLE WHILE DRESSING APPROPRIATELY!


 

1001 Uses for White Distilled Vinegar - Who would have thought?!

As Salaamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuh!

Insha Allah this finds you in the best of health and Iman.
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White Vinegar is great to clean with because it is All Natural, Environmentally Friendly, Non-Toxic & Economical!  You can buy White Vinegar at any grocery store, Wal-Mart, Kmart, Target, etc.  The most widely seen brand is Heinz, but there are many other brands that I imagine are just as good.  Use Vinegar in the Garden, Laundry, for your Car, Pet care & yes, Cooking!  Below are 26 ways to clean with White Vinegar.  The ones I have actually done below are highlighted in BOLD.  To see all 1001 uses, click here:
http://www.vinegartips.com/scripts/pageViewSec.asp?id=7


1. Deodorize the sink: Pour 1 cup baking soda, followed by 1 cup hot vinegar, down the drain. Let sit for at least 5 minutes, then rinse with hot water.
2. Deodorize the garbage disposal: Make ice cubes out of vinegar. Run the disposal with a few vinegar ice cubes and cold water.
3. Clean countertops: Wipe down surfaces with a rag dipped in vinegar.
4. Clean the fridge: Use a mixture of half water, half vinegar to wipe down the interior shelves and walls.
5. Remove soap build-up and odors from the dishwasher: Once a month, pour 1 cup of vinegar into an empty dishwasher and run the machine through its entire cycle.
6. Bust oven grease: If you’ve got grease spots on the oven door, pour some vinegar directly on the stains, let it sit for 15 minutes, and wipe away with a sponge.
7. To make old glassware sparkle: To get rid of the cloudy effect, wrap a vinegar-soaked towel around the glass and let it sit. Remove and rinse with hot water.
8. Get rid of lime deposits on your tea kettle: Fill the kettle with vinegar and let it boil. Allow it to cool, and rinse with water.
9. Remove stains in coffee cups: Create a paste using of equal parts vinegar and salt (or in lieu of salt, baking soda) and scrub gently before rinsing.
10. Treat Tupperware stains (and stinkiness): Wipe the containers with a vinegar-saturated cloth.
11. Remove stains on aluminum pots: Boil 1 cup vinegar and 1 cup water.
12. Deter ant infestations: Spray outside doorways and windowsills, and anywhere you see a trail of critters.
13. Clean can openers: Scrub the wheel of your can opener with vinegar using an old toothbrush.
14. Remove stickers or labels: Cover the sticker with a vinegar-soaked cloth. Let it sit overnight—it should slide right off by morning.
15. Shine porcelain sinks: A bit of vinegar and a good scrub should leave them sparkling.
16. Clean grout: Pour on some vinegar, let it hang out for a few minutes, and buff with an old toothbrush.
17. Clean the shower door: Spray them down with vinegar pre-shower, or post (after you’ve squeegeed the glass) to remove hard water deposits.
18. Clean a grimy showerhead: To get rid of scum, fill a Ziploc with ½ a cup of baking soda and 1 cup vinegar and tie it around the showerhead. Let it sit for an hour, until the bubbling has stopped. Remove the bag and run  the shower.
19. Make a toilet sparkle: Pour in a cup or two of vinegar and let it sit there overnight before scrubbing with a toilet brush.
20. Polish linoleum floors: Add 1 cup of vinegar for every gallon of water you use to wash the floor.
21. Clean paintbrushes: Soak paintbrushes for an hour before simmering them on the stove to remove hardened paint. Drain and rinse.
22. Clean grills: Spray vinegar on a ball of tin foil, then use it to give the grate a firm scrub.
23. Disinfect wood cutting boards: Wipe down wood boards with a wash of vinegar.
24. Clean the microwave: Fill a microwave-safe bowl with 2 cups water and ½ cup vinegar. Heat it on full power for 3-4 minutes until it comes to a boil. Keep the door closed for a few minutes longer to let the steam fill the microwave, loosening the grime. Remove the bowl (carefully!) and wipe down interior walls with a sponge.
25. Polish patent leather accessories: Give them a rub with a vinegar-soaked cloth. Buff with a dry cloth.
26. Add a bit of white vinegar to your rinse cycle, which strips away past detergent build-up. Vinegar also gets rid of any lingering odors clinging to the fabric.

Characteristics of the Best Women of Creation (part 3 of 3)

As Salaamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuh!

Insha Allah this finds you in the best of health and Iman.
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Look at the great intellect and good opinion of this noble lady, how she advised the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam), thereby removing his grief and concern. Similarly, the righteous woman should advise her husband in all that is good and will remove anguish and cause of concern from him.
Another example from the Sunnah of the righteousness of women is that of Umm Saleem - the wife of Abu Talhah (radiy Allahu 'anhu). Abu Talhah was a disbeliever when he came to Umm Saleem asking for her hand in marriage. She refused, saying, ‘I will o­nly marry you if you become a Muslim'. So he became a Muslim and she made her mahr (dowry) his Islam. They were blessed with a son whose name was Abu Umayr. He was very beloved to Abu Talhah, but however after a few years he passed away. So when Abu Talhah entered upon his wife and asked ‘How is Abu Umayr?', she answered him saying ‘He is in the best of all situations'. Then she beautified herself for her husband and after he had taken pleasure from her she said ‘What do you think if a people had given another people some property to look after and they came o­ne day to ask for their property back, do you think they have the right to do so?' Abu Talhah said ‘Yes, of course'. So Umm Saleem said ‘Verily, Allah has taken back His property'. At this Abu Talhah became very angry and said ‘You did all of this and then told me the news about my son?' So he went to the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam) and told him about what had happened. The Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam) said ‘May Allah give blessings upon that night and what you did together'. They were granted a son from that very night and his name was Abdullah. Abdullah had nine other sons , all of whom had memorised the Qur'aan. This was in answer to the du'aa of the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam).

Once a guest came to the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam), so he said to his companions ‘Who will take care of my guest tonight?' o­ne of the Ansaar said ‘I will, O Messenger of Allah'. So he went home and said to his wife ‘What do we have for food?' She said ‘We o­nly have enough food for our children'. He said ‘Put the children to sleep whilst they are hungry. When the Prophet's guest arrives, serve him the food and put out the lamp and pretend to eat so that he does not think we are not eating'. So she obeyed her husband in this. The guest went back to the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) and told him what the Ansaari and his wife had done. When the Ansaari went to the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) the next day, he (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) said ‘Allah (subhannahu wa ta'ala) is Astonished at what you did last night with regards to your guest. And Allah revealed the Ayah “And those who, before them, had homes (in Al-Madina) and had adopted the Faith, - love those who emigrate to them, and have no jealousy in their breasts for that which they have been given, and give them preference over themselves, even though they were in need of that.”4

So what has preceded are some of the examples of how a woman can become amongst the most honourable and the best of creation, and thereby earn Paradise - and may Allah make us from among its people - Ameen.

FOOTNOTES

2. Suratu-Fatir (35):11.

3. Bukhaaree.

4. Tirmidhee, Nasaa'i & Ibn Maajah.

5. Saheehul-Jaami' 3407.

6. Al-Muwwatta Imaam Maalik.

7. Tirmidhee.

8. Suratul-Furqaan (25):74.

9. Saheehul-Jaami' 674.

10. Bukhaaree.

11. Bukhaaree.

12. Tirmidhee.

13. Bukhaaree & Muslim.

14. Ibn Maajah & Ahmad.

15. Abu Daawood & Nasaa'i.

16. Bukhaaree.

17. Suratul-Ahzab (33):33.

18. Related by Al-Baghawee in Sharhus-Sunnah 10:44.

19. Bukhaaree.

20. Suratu-Nur (24):30-31.

21. Suratu-TaHa (20):121.

22. Tirmidhee, Abu Daawood & Nasaa'i.

23. Bukhaaree.

24. Muslim.

25. Suratul-Qasas (28):9

26. See from Suratu- Maryam (19):16

27. See Suratu-Tahrim (66):10

28. Suratul-Hashr (59):9

The Housing of the Mothers of the Believers

As Salaamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuh!

Insha Allah this finds you in the best of health and Iman.
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From the book: The Houses of the Companions around the Prophet's Mosque by Imtiaz Ahmad (A summary and translation of Dr. Mohammed Ilyas Abdul Gani's book of the same title)

Hujrat is plural of Hujrah. It means a hut or an ordinary cottage. Here Hujrat means those houses in which the Prophet Mohammed (sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) stayed in Madina with his wives (radhi Allahu anhun). According to several narrations, the Prophet Mohammed (sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) built two huts for his two wives when he built the Prophet's Mosque in Madina. One hut was for Aisha (radhi Allahu anha) and the other for Sauda (radhi Allahu anha). Later on he had more wives and he, therefore, built similar huts for them. He built nine such huts during his lifetime and he spent the last ten years of his life in these huts. One of these huts happens to be his resting place till the Day of Judgment...

Historians agree about the location of five Hujrat. These were the residences of Hafsa, Aisha, Sauda, Zainab bint Khazima and Umm Salma (radhi Allahu anhun). There are some differences among historians about the locations of the other Hujrat. After analyzing their difference we arrive at the conclusion that all these Hujrat were situated on the eastern side of the Prophet's mosque. They were in a row and extended beyond the northern boundary of the mosque...

What were these Hujrat like? Each Hujrah consisted of a small room and a tiny backyard. The backyard was enclosed by the branches of palm trees and unbaked bricks. Blankets of hair were thrown on them to ensure privacy in the yard. The door of each Hujrah was not built from an expensive wood. Each door had a rough blanket hanging there for privacy. Hence each Hujrah reflected humbleness and modesty.

Dimension of each Hujrah was approximately 5m x 4m and the backyard was 5m x 3.5m. A person standing in a Hujrah could touch the ceiling by his hand.

Saeed bin Musayyab wished that these Hujrat should not have been demolished during the extension of the Prophet's Mosque. He said, "I earnestly wished that these Hujrat were left as they were, to remind the visitors as well as the new generations of Madina about the lifestyle of Prophet Mohammed (sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) and his contentment with so very little. Owners of lofty buildings would hopefully avoid bragging about their worldly assets after their visit to these humble cottages."

The locations of Aisha's Hujrah and Sauda's Hujrah are shown on the map below. Sauda (radhi Allahu anha) died during the year 55 Hijrah. She gave her Hujrah to Aisha (radhi Allahu anha) at the time of her death. The location of Hafsa's Hujrah can also been seen on the map. There ran a very narrow street between the huts of Aisha (radhi Allahu anha) and Hafsa (radhi Allahu anha). It was so narrow that hardly one person could pass through it at a time. Aisha (radhi Allahu anha) and Hafsa (radhi Allahu anha) used to talk to each other while sitting in their own Hujrat. Zainab bint Khuzaima (radhi Allahu anha) passed away two months after her marriage to the Prophet Mohammed (sallallahu alaihi wa sallam). Location of her Hujrah can be seen on the map. When the Prophet Mohammed (sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) married Umm Salma (radhi Allahu anha) he housed her in the hut that formerly belonged to Zainab bint Khazima (radhi Allahu anha).

Sunday, May 9, 2010

6 Rights of Every Muslim

As Salaamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuh!

Insha Allah this finds you in the best of health and Iman.
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6 RIGHTS OF EVERY MUSLIM
By: Shaykh 'Abdur-Rahmaan as-Sa'dee

Taken from: Bahjatu Quloob il-Abraar wa Qurratu ‘Uyoon il-Akhyaar fee Jaami’ il-Akhbaar, Pgs. 65-67, No. 29

Abu Hurayrah (radee Allaahu ‘anhu) narrated that the Messenger of Allaah (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: “The rights of the Muslim upon the Muslim are six.” It was said: “And what are they O Messenger of Allaah?” He replied: “When you meet him, give him the greeting of peace, when he invites you, respond to his invitation, when he seeks your advice, advise him, when he sneezes and praises Allaah, supplicate for mercy upon him, when he becomes ill, visit him, and when he dies follow him (i.e. his funeral).” This hadeeth was reported by Muslim. These 6 rights, whoever establishes them in dealing with the Muslims, then his establishing things other than them (from the obligations) are even more important (or necessary). And his doing these things results in him fulfilling these obligations and rights, which contain an abundance of good and tremendous reward from Allaah.

The First Right: “When you meet him, give him the greeting of peace.” For verily the greeting of peace is a cause of love, which results in producing faith (al-Eemaan), which results in the person entering the Paradise. This is as Prophet (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: “By the one in Whose Hand is my soul, you all will not enter into the Paradise until you believe, and you will not believe until you love each other. Shall I not direct you to something that if you do it, you will love each other? Spread the greeting of peace amongst yourselves.” The greeting of peace is from the virtuous characteristics of Islaam. For verily each of the two people who meet each other supplicates for the other for safety from evils, and mercy, and blessing that brings about every good. And what follows this is a cheerful face and appropriate words of greeting which result in unity and love, and it removes feelings of estrangement and cold disassociation. Thus, giving the greeting of peace is the right of the Muslim, and it is obligatory upon the person who is greeted to return greeting with a similar greeting or o¬ne that is better than it. And the best of the people are those who start the greeting of peace first.

The Second Right: ”When he invites you, respond to his invitation.” This means that when he invites you with an invitation to some food and drink, then fulfil the request of your brother who has drawn near to you and honoured you with the invitation. Respond to his invitation (i.e. accept it), unless you have an excuse. The

Third Right: “And when he seeks your advice, advise him.” This means that if he seeks consultation with you regarding some action, as to whether he should do it or not, then advise him with that which you would like for yourself. Thus, if the action is something that is beneficial in all aspects, then encourage him to do that, and if it is something harmful, then warn him against it. And if the action contains both benefit and harm, then explain that to him and weigh the benefits against the harms. Likewise, if he consults with you concerning some dealing with someone among the people, or whether he should marry a woman off to someone, or whether he should marry someone, then extend your pure and sincere advice to him, and deal with him from the view point of what you would do for you own self. And avoid deceiving him in any matter of these things. For verily whoever deceives the Muslims, then he is not of them, and indeed he has left off the obligation of being sincere and advising. And this sincerity and advising is absolutely obligatory, however it becomes more emphasised when the person seeks your advice and he requests from you that you give him a beneficial opinion. For this reason the Prophet (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) specifically mentioned it in this important situation. The explanation of the hadeeth: “The religion is sincerity”, has already been mentioned previously (in this book) in a manner that suffices without us having to repeat the discussion here.

The Fourth Right: “And when he sneezes and praises Allaah, then pray for mercy upon him.” This is due to the fact that sneezing is a favour from Allaah, in the expelling of this congested air that is blocked in certain parts of the body of the human being. Allaah makes it easy for this air to have a passage out where it can exit, and thus the sneezing person feels relief. Thus, the Prophet (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) legislated that the person praise Allaah for this favour, and he legislated for his (Muslim) brother to say to him: “May Allaah have mercy upon you.” He also commanded the person who sneezed to answer his (Muslim) brother by saying to him: “May Allaah guide you and set right your affairs.” Therefore, whoever does not praise Allaah, then he does not deserve for others to pray for mercy upon him, and in this case he cannot blame anyone except himself. For he is the o¬ne who has caused himself to lose the two blessings: the blessing of praising Allaah, and the blessing of his brother's supplication for him that is a result of the praising.

The Fifth Right: “And when he becomes ill, visit him.” Visiting the sick is from the rights of the Muslim, and especially for the person who has a highly stressed and emphasised right upon you, like the relative, and the friend, and so forth. It is from the best of the righteous deeds. And whoever visits his Muslim brother, he remains engulfed in the mercy (of Allaah), and when he sits with him the mercy (of Allaah) covers him. And whoever visits the sick Muslim at the beginning of the day, the Angels send prayers of blessing upon him until evening comes, and whoever visits him at the end of the day, the Angels send prayers of blessing upon him until morning comes. It is desired for the person who visits the sick to supplicate for him to be cured and to make him feel at ease. He should ease his worries by giving him glad tidings of well-being and recovery (i.e. be positive). He should remind him of repentance and turning to Allaah, and he should give him beneficial admonition. He should not sit with him too long (i.e. over staying his welcome), rather he should o¬nly sit with him long enough fulfil the right of visiting, unless the sick person is positively effected by many people coming in to see him and many people coming to sit with him. Thus, for each situation there is a different statement (i.e. advice o¬n how to deal with it).

The Sixth Right: “And if he dies, follow him (his funeral).” For verily whoever follows the funeral until the deceased's body is prayed over, then he will receive a Qeeraat of reward. (Translator's note: A Qeeraat is an amount equivalent to the size of the Mountain of Uhud in Madeenah.) And if he follows the funeral procession until the body is buried, then he will receive two Qeeraats of reward. And following the funeral procession contains (fulfilment of) a right for Allaah, a right for the deceased, and a right for the living relatives of the deceased.

Hadith of the Guarantee - Q & A

As Salaamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuh!

Insha Allah this finds you in the best of health and Iman.
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QUESTIONS & ANSWERS
1. Question: Is it allowed to keep the daily newspaper inside the house (as it also contains pictures)? How do we understand the hadith the Prophet صلى الله عليه و سلم: “The angels do not enter into a house (room) where there is a picture”[5] and other similar ahaadeeth about those that make pictures that they will be tortured on the Day of Resurrection[6]?
Answer: The issue is as mentioned by questioner regarding the danger of pictures or picture-taking. Indeed there is a great threat as it relates to it and it is very dangerous. For this reason, that which the Muslims should do as it relates to these pictures, is to only keep in his home that which is of dire necessity, or if there is a great need for these pictures. That which there is no need for should be gotten rid of. That which remains should be only pictures known as (الصور الممتحنة) – the pictures that are not used for glorification by being placed on walls etc. As it relates to other than these types of pictures then one should strive to get rid of rest of them to best of his ability because it is a dangerous issue.

2. Question: I have two daughters who are currently living in Egypt with their father. He does not allow me to speak with them unless he is able to be there with them. He spends most of his time here in America while they are there with his wife. I would like my children back here with me or if that is not possible I want some kind of relationship with them. I have not spoken to my children for three (3) years, and have not seen them for four (4) years. What is your advice to me and to him?
Answer: The first thing is to advise the woman with patience and to seek her reward from Allaah سبحانه و تعالى as this is indeed a great calamity that has befallen her regarding her children. We ask Allaah سبحانه و تعالى to make her affair easy and we advise her to make du’aa to Allaah سبحانه و تعالى to make her affair easy and to correct the affair and to correct this issue that has been the cause of her not talking to or seeing her children for that length of time. As it relates to the daughters, they are acquiring sin by not contacting their mother. This type of contact and relationship with their mother is obligatory upon them. For them to continue in this type of cutting off of ties – this type of boycott/abandonment is not permissible no matter what reason they give. The mother has a great status in Islaam and a great status as it regards her children. Allaah سبحانه و تعالى will ask those daughters on the Day of Judgement about this mother and their relationship with their mother. As it relates to her not having any contact with her daughters for three years – this is from despicable character, on the part of the one who has caused this disconnection between the two. We advise her to try to treat situation in best way possible even if she has to call her former husband and remind him to fear Allaah سبحانه و تعالى in a way that is better, even if she has to write to him reminding him about the duty a daughter has for their mother and the relationship that a mother and chid should be able to have.Likewise, her speech with the daughters should be that which is lenient, gentle and not harsh. Maybe it was something that she said to the daughters about the (former) husband that caused him to take such a hard stance and cut-off the relationship between the daughters and the mother – maybe it is something he heard from her, or maybe not. If this was the reason then she should leave that off and she should make the relationship between her and her daughters be one of goodness and reminding one another to be obedient to Allaah سبحانه و تعالى and it should be a relationship based on helping them in obedience to Allaah
عز و .3.
Question: We are living as a minority in the lands of the kuffar. Many incidents of verbal abuse occur here. For instance, you may be driving a vehicle and some of the kuffar use hand signals or yell out to you. Are you able to retaliate with the like of them, i.e., make hand signals back or stop the car to threaten them or should you have sabr(patience) so that you can also give them Da’wah to Islaam?
Answer: The answer is as the Prophet صلى الله عليه و سلم said: “the Muslim is not one who curses others nor is he one who is a constant criticizer nor does he have a filthy mouth or filthy actions.”[7] This type of filth that is done with hand signals and verbal threats/abuse is not to be retaliated with its like, because the Believer, as the Prophet صلى الله عليه و سلم said, is not filthy in his actions or statements. Allaah سبحانه و تعالى says when describing the servants of Ar-Rahmaan:وَإِذَا مَرُّوا بِاللَّغْوِ مَرُّوا كِرَاماً{… and if they pass by some evil play or evil talk, they pass by it with dignity.}[Al-Furqaan 25:72]
Also, Allaah سبحانه و تعالى says:وَأَعْرِضْ عَنِ الْجَاهِلِينَ{… and turn away from the foolish} [Al-A’raaf 7:199]
However, if it is at all possible to give this person some advice or da’wah, then this should be done, if not, then one should walk by them, as the poet says: “And I may walk by a foolish person and he curses me and I keep on walking and I say that doesn’t concern me” Meaning that you walk by these type of people and you deal with them like you didn’t even see them do anything or hear them say anything.

4. Question: If sisters are taking Islaamic classes in the Masjid downstairs and the musallah is upstairs or vice versa and the salaah time comes in, is it a must for the sisters to attend the Jamaa’ah or can they do their salaah later?Answer: That which is most appropriate i.e. that which the Muslimah should do if she is in the masjid at that time when the salaah is established, is to pray with the Muslims in Jamaa’ah. If salaah is taking place and she is sitting and talking with other sisters this is not appropriate; rather, if she is in the Masjid when the salaah is being made she should pray with the Muslims in Jamaa’ah.

5. Question: Can one give monetary assistance to needy kuffar in order to invite them to Islaam?
Answer: Yes, it is permissible to give assistance to the needy ones even if they are disbelievers. This assistance may be in the form of money in order to bring their hearts closer and to invite them to Islaam. In the books of Aadaab (characteristics, moral behaviour etc.) there is a chapter called “Giving a gift to the mushrik”and they give evidence for that. Likewise Allaah سبحانه و تعالى says in the Qur’aan: لا يَنْهَاكُمُ اللَّهُ عَنِ الَّذِينَ لَمْ يُقَاتِلُوكُمْ فِي الدِّينِ وَلَمْ يُخْرِجُوكُم مِّن دِيَارِكُمْ أَن تَبَرُّوهُمْ وَتُقْسِطُوا إِلَيْهِمْ إِنَّ اللَّهَ يُحِبُّ الْمُقْسِطِينَAllâh does not forbid you to deal justly and kindly with those who fought not against you on account of religion nor drove you out of your homes. Verily, Allâh loves those who deal with equity. [al-Mumtahanah 60:8]
It is stipulated as a condition when giving assistance in the form of money that you ensure that it is not used in a manner that is impermissible, for example, do not give to someone who will use it to buy intoxicants or to go and do something impermissible with a prostitute or to use it to gamble or the like. Rather, if they need to use it for food, drink their home etc. then this is permissible.

6. Question: What do you say about talking about the people of innovation in a joking manner, in order to laugh and joke about them and give them nicknames in order to belittle them?
Answer: To mention the bad characteristics of a person of bid’ah especially if he is one who calls to his bid’ah, then to mention his faults in giving naseehah and advice to the Muslim is permissible in order to warn the Muslims from this individual. However, the aspect of mocking this individual and being sarcastic and laughing at him etc. is not from advice to the Believers. It is very important that one differentiates between the two affairs: naseehah (advice) by mentioning the faults of the individual in order to warn the people and the other affair of mocking people which is a despicable trait.

7. Question: Is it allowed to read parenting books from non-Muslims, and applying those principles when raising our children so long as those principles and theories do not contradict Islamic teachings?
Answer: In the Book of Allaah سبحانه و تعالى and the Sunnah of His Prophet صلى الله عليه و سلم you will find that which will suffice the Muslim and does not allow the Muslim to be left to these other means. That which is upon this woman and the likes of her is to go back to the Book of Allaah سبحانه و تعالى and the Sunnah of the Prophetصلى الله عليه و سلم and that which has been gathered from these two sources by the People of Knowledge, relating to the topic of tarbiyyah (nurturing and cultivating the children) so that she can nurture her children in accordance with the Book of Allaah سبحانه و تعالى and the Sunnah of the Prophet صلى الله عليه و سلم. She should not go by herself and read the books written by people who are not trustworthy and then become fooled by them. Perhaps she may be one who is tried in her religion, or her children may be tried and tested with this type of fitnah and they may be raised in a manner which is far from that which Islaam commands and encourages us to be upon. And perhaps she may believe that these characteristics which she is trying to instil in her children are beneficial, and perhaps it may not occur to her until it is too late, that the things that she has been instilling in her children are wrong i.e. when she sees the negative results of giving them these characteristics that are far from the Book and the Sunnah. As it is said ‘there is nothing equal to being safe’, so it is safe for her and better for her, and she will find that which is sufficient in turning back to Book of Allaah سبحانه و تعالى and the Sunnah of the Prophet صلى الله          عليه و سلم

Natural Face, Body & Hair Care - Using ingredients from your pantry/fridge!

As Salaamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuh!

Insha Allah this finds you in the best of health and Iman.
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I've never liked putting chemicals into my body.  Whenever I needed a pain reliever I always opted for an Aspirin because most of the other pain relievers are chemically made/created.

Insha Allah soon I will start a family.  Therefore, I have recently decided that it was time to start taking away the chemicals I put into my body by using natural body, face and skin care products.  You can buy natural products but you usually pay a higher retail price.  OR, you can do like what our ancestors did and make your own from ingredients you have in your pantry/fridge like Oatmeal, Honey, Oils, Sugar, Eggs, Milk, Fruits, Vegetables, Yogurt, etc!

When you look at the ingredients of your dish liquids, shampoos, conditioners, face washes/scrubs, body washes/soaps, deoderants, etc you will find Sodium Lauryl Sulfate or Sodium Laureth Sulfate which are chemical bubbling detergents that can be harsh on the skin.  You will also find a few types of Parabens in the products that you buy which have been linked to Cancers.  Parabens are chemically made as well.  Deoderants/Anti Perspirants contain Aluminum which too is also linked to Cancers.

YOU CAN LITERALLY REPLACE YOUR LAUNDRY DETERGENT, FABRIC SOFTENER, DISH LIQUID, SHAMPOO, CONDITIONER, DEODERANT, FACE CARE, HAIR CARE, BODY CARE, ETC WITH ALL NATURAL INGREDIENTS!

So, I have been researching the internet to find all natural homemade recipes for my face, body and hair.  I have found several websites with literally thousands of recipes!  I will list some of these websites in a minute.

Here is a website that has recipes for all the BOLDED categories above: http://www.passionatehomemaking.com/?s=household+cleaner&submit=Search

I decided to take the first step by finding natural face washes, scrubs and face masks using ingredients of what I have in my pantry as of right now, which are Oatmeal, Wheat Germ, Honey, Corn Meal, Corn Starch, Sesame Seeds, etc.

I always knew that Oatmeal & Honey were great for the skin as they are used in many retail bath & body products.  Oatmeal is great for Poison Ivy, Sunburns, it helps soothe the skin, is hypoallergenic, help absorb oil on the face, makes the skin soft, has good amino acids in it, etc.  Honey is great for the skin as well.  Natural honey has enzymes, phytonutrients & antioxidents.  Most of the store bought honeys have these components removed through being homogenized, heated & purified.  When looking for a honey for skin care, get an organic or natural one, but read the label carefully first.  When using Oatmeal for skin care, use the plain ones, not the flavored ones.

Tonight I decided to try washing my face with nothing but Honey.  My face felt really soft afterwards.  Honey has been used for centuries to clean the skin.  I honestly can't see myself washing my entire body with honey, but I might try it one day just to see what it's like.

I found some great recipes online using Oatmeal and/or Honey.  I tried a face scrub recipe tonight as well and liked the results.  In a small plastic Rubbermaid container I mixed the below ingredients:
1/2 Cup ground Oatmeal (I used a small food processor to grind these up)
1/2 Cup of Cornmeal
1/2 Cup of Wheat Bran
I took 1 teaspoon of the powdered mix and put into a small Dixie cup and mixed with a bit of water to make a paste or you can mix with honey.  I put that mixture on my face and scrubbed.  You can then rinse off with warm water.  MY FACE FELT REALLY SMOOTH AND SOFT AFTERWARDS!

Rose Water or Plain Green Tea are great for facial toners/astringents.  I also found a face mask that I will use twice a week using only Oatmeal, Honey & Yogurt.  The first video below shows the recipe amounts.

THESE ARE WEBSITES WITH RECIPES:
http://www.bathandbodyrecipes.com/

http://www.pioneerthinking.com/lotions.html

http://www.natural-skin-care-info.com/index.html 

http://www.passionatehomemaking.com/?s=household+cleaner&submit=Search

http://face-natural.com/blog/natural-skin-care-articles/raw-honey-great-for-natural-skin-care

http://www.ehow.com/how_4584824_oatmeal-facial-cleanser.html




THIS VIDEO TALKS ABOUT NATURAL INGREDIENTS FOR WASHING, SCRUBBING, TONING THE SKIN, WHAT SHE USES FOR FACE MASKS, MOISTURIZERS, ETC.


Saturday, May 8, 2010

Characteristics of the Best Women of Creation (part 2 of 3)

As Salaamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuh!

Insha Allah this finds you in the best of health and Iman.
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CHARACTERISTICS OF THE BEST WOMEN OF CREATION (PART 2 OF 3)

This type of woman is the o­ne through which a man would receive happiness in his home and o­ne who will raise a righteous family. The Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam) said,


“Everyone of you is a guardian, and is responsible for what is in his custody. A lady is a guardian of her husband's house and is responsible for it.”16

And Allah (subhannahu wa ta'ala) said,


“And stay in your houses, and do not display yourselves like that of the times of ignorance.”17

By doing this, a woman can become of those truly obedient to Allah.

It must be noted that obedience to the husband is mentioned as being o­nly in those affairs which are good, i.e. o­nly in that which complies with the shari'ah (Laws) of Allah. So, if he orders her to pray, fast, and take care of the home, then this is all good and she should obey him in doing so. However, if he orders her with disobedience to Allah, then “There is no obedience to the creation when it involves disobedience to the Creator.”18 So if he orders her to be neglectful of her prayers or in her fasting, or he wants her to beautify herself in a way which is not permissible, or to leave the house wearing perfume etc., then she should not obey him in this as this is disobedience to Allah. The Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam) said,


“No obedience for evil deeds, obedience is required o­nly in what is good.”19

THE RIGHTEOUS WOMAN should take care of and guard her herself and her honour. Allah praised Maryam the mother of ‘Isa (alayhis salam) for possessing this great quality of chastity. From this guarding of chastity comes many other affairs.


1. Lowering the gaze. Allah has ordered both the men and the women to lower their gaze and to protect their private parts.20
2. Not leaving the house wearing perfume or displaying ornaments. Allah has ordered the woman to cover herself up in order to protect her honour and chastity. It is the practise of jaahiliyyah (ignorance) for the women to go out uncovered, and they consider this to be progress and liberation! Rather, it is from the ways of shaytaan. Allah mentions in the Qur'aan that when shaytaan whispered to Aadam and Hawwa, and they ate from the tree, their private parts became apparent to them.21 So the way of shaytaan is to make apparent and to display the ‘aurah. Every society in which open displaying of the people's private parts is prolific is an evil society and is upon the path of destruction. The Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam) said, “When a woman applies perfume and then goes about in an assembly, she is like such and such i.e. an adulteress.”22

THE RIGHTEOUS WOMAN should not be o­ne who is given to complaining and nagging, rather she should be o­ne who brings happiness into the home. We can take an example from the story of Ibraaheem (alayhi sallam), when he left his wife, Hajar, in Makkah. Hajar said to him, “Who has ordered you to do this?” Ibraaheem answered her, saying, “Verily, my Lord has ordered me to do this”. So she said, “If this is Allah's order, then Allah will never leave us and destroy us.” A further example can be found in the story of Ismaa'eel (alayhi sallam) and his wife. Ibraaheem continued to visit Hajar and his son Ismaa'eel, until when his son had grown up and married he visited him at his home in Makkah. He knocked o­n the door and found that Ismaa'eel was not home. His wife was present but she did not recognise her husband's father. Ibraaheem began to question her as to her situation and whether or not she was contented etc. She replied that they were in a period of great poverty and trials, and she began complaining about her situation. So Ibraaheem said to her, “When Ismaa'eel returns, tell him to change the outer screen (lit. veil) of his house. So when Ismaa'eel returned, his wife informed him that an old man had visited him whilst he was out and that he had asked her about her situation, to which she replied as she had replied. Then she told him of the message Ibraaheem had left. Ismaa'eel then said to his wife, “Verily, it was my father and he ordered me to divorce you.” So he divorced her and married another woman. Some time later Ibraaheem came again to visit his son and again found that he was not home. So he asked Ismaa'eel's new wife about her situation and whether or not she was content. She replied, “Alhamdulillah. Allah has given us great blessings and given us all that we need,” even though at the time she had absolutely nothing in her house. So, before Ibraaheem left he said, “Tell Ismaa'eel to keep the outer screen of his house.” When Ismaa'eel returned, his wife told him of his visitor and what he had said. Ismaa'eel said, “That was my father and he told me to keep you as my wife.”23

Note how Ibraaheem, this great Prophet of Allah, described the woman as the outer screen of the house. This is because she is the keeper and protector of the house and those affairs concerning it. Whoever enters the house does so by her permission and knowledge. The shayateen wish for the women to leave their homes in their beautification, leaving behind their clothing, so that when the people have taken their pleasure from them, then they turn away from them as if they were nothing. Rather, the woman is as Ibraaheem described her, as she is the o­ne who takes care of the affairs of the home. A poet o­nce said, “The mother is (like) a school. If you take care of the mother, you take care of the whole society.” The Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam) said,


“O women, you should give charity and ask for much forgiveness. For I saw you in bulk amongst the dwellers of Hell.” A wise lady among them said, “Why is it, Messenger of Allah, that our folk are in bulk in Hell?” He (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) replied, “You curse too much and are ungrateful to your husbands. If o­ne of you has a husband who is good to you for all of his life and then you see o­ne thing from him which displeases you, you say ‘Verily, he was never good to me at all'.”24

So, as the intimate companion of her husband, the woman must ensure to take care of these affairs, for if she is good and righteous then the whole society becomes good. But if there are conflicts and disputes in the home, then this leads to the destruction of the society.

In the Qur'aan, Allah (subhannahu wa ta'ala) mentions some examples of the righteousness of women. He (subhannahu wa ta'ala) gave the stories of four women, two of which were righteous and two who were evil. As for the pious women, they were the wife of Fir'awn and Maryam the daughter of ‘Imraan.



When the wife of Fir'awn saw Musa (alayhi sallam) in the cradle, her eyes were full of love for him. She said to Fir'awn, “A comfort of the eye for me and for you. Kill him not, perhaps he may be of benefit to us, or we may adopt him as a son.”25 So he (Fir'awn) granted her wish and Musa grew up in her household. When he became a Prophet and began calling the people to Islam, she answered this call and became a Muslim, despite the fact that she was the wife of Fir'awn - the man who claimed to be Allah Himself, (subhannahu wa ta'ala) - and despite all that she possessed through being the wife of a king; she refused that and chose to be amongst Allah's company. This is a great example of how a woman chose the Hereafter over and above all of the wealth of this world.

The example of Maryam bint ‘Imraan was that she took care of herself and her private parts in such a way as shows us the great importance of the woman's being chaste and not going out of the house unclothed ,etc.

The first example of the two evil women is that of the wife of Nuh (alayhi sallam). She used to go and tell the people of Nuh about what he was doing and planning; working and plotting against her husband.



And the example of the wife of Lut (alayhi sallam) is similar. When the two angels came to Lut, she told his people that two young men had come to her house, so the people came in an attempt to do evil to them.27

Islam has forbidden that the secrets of the household be divulged outside, and these two examples show the evil of this action. Therefore, the example of a good woman is o­ne who is quick in doing good deeds, she takes care of her private parts and does not spread the secrets of the home. She is o­ne who will be a caller to good, o­ne who closes the doors which lead to evil.

From the Sunnah we have the example of Umm Salamah - the wife of the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam), the mother of the Believers. She was a woman who possessed great intellect and was of good opinion. When the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam) went to make ‘Umrah in the year 6AH, the Quraish prevented him from doing so and turned him back. He (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam) told his companions, who were dressed in ihraam ready for ‘Umrah, to cut their hair and slaughter their animals. They were astonished, and were hesitant to do this. He ordered them again and still they did not do as he had commanded. The Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam) entered into the tent of Umm Salamah, unhappy and disturbed by what had happened, and he told her that he had ordered his companions to shave their heads and slaughter their animals but they did not do anything. Umm Salamah said, ‘Go yourself in the midst of your companions and cut your hair and slaughter your animal. They will follow your example'. So he did this and they all followed his example.

Characteristics of the Best Women of Creation (part 1 of 3)

As Salaamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuh!

Insha Allah this finds you in the best of health and Iman.
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CHARACTERISTICS OF THE BEST WOMEN OF CREATION

By: Shaykh Saleem al Hilaalee

Verily Allah created us to worship Him, and He created everything in pairs (male and female) in order that life may continue and that His worship may be established. Allah says,


“And Allah did create you (Aadam) from dust, then from Nutfah (male and female discharge semen drops i.e. Aadam's offspring), then He made you pairs (male and female).”2

Both the man and the woman have obligations and duties to fulfil, each o­ne's duties in harmony with the other's; the woman's duties complete and perfect those of the man, and the man's duties complete and perfect those of the woman. From those qualities which Allah and His Messenger (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam) have praised, and which are required in a believing woman in order for her to perform her duties correctly, the greatest of these is the quality of her possessing the Deen. The Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam) said,


“A woman is married for four things: her wealth, her family status, her beauty and her deen. So you should marry the religious woman (otherwise) you will be a loser.”3

As for the husband, he should also be a righteous man, as the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam) said,


“When someone with whose deen and character you are satisfied asks your daughter in marriage, accede to his request. If you do not do so, there will be temptation o­n Earth and extensive corruption.”4

Indeed the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam) was sent to perfect the people's character, and he (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam) praised the woman who possesses these noble qualities and perfect character, saying that she is to a man the best possession in this world -


“The whole world is a provision, and the best object of benefit of the world is the pious woman.” 5

Allah has created the woman as a companion for the man, in order that they may live in this world performing their duties and observing Allah's commands correctly. The Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam) said,


“I was sent to perfect good character,”6 and, “Among the Muslims the most perfect, as regards his faith, is the o­ne whose character is excellent, and the best among you are those who treat their wives well.”7

In order to achieve success in this world and the Hereafter the woman must adopt this methodology of perfecting her character, beginning with those affairs concerning her home. The woman is an essential component in the building of the home in order that it may be established upon Taqwa (fear of Allah & piety). Allah says that those who believe say,


“Our Lord! Bestow o­n us from our wives and our offspring who will be the comfort of our eyes...”8

Thus, the correction of the household is the first step towards the correction of the society. 


THE RIGHTEOUS WOMAN is the o­ne who knows her responsibilities, her rights and obligations, and performs those acts which are obligatory upon her. The Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam) said,



“If a woman prayed her five daily prayers, fasted in the month (of Ramadan), protected her private parts from illegal sexual intercourse, and obeyed her husband, it will be said to her: ‘Enter Paradise from whichever gate you like',”9

And he (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam) said,


“Islam is based o­n (the following) five (principles): to testify that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah and that Muhammad (sallallahu 'alayhi wasallam) is His Messenger, to offer the prayers dutifully and perfectly, to pay Zakaat, to perform Hajj, and to observe fast during the month of Ramadhaan.”10

This is the first thing which the woman must take care of in all circumstances; whether difficulty, ease, pleasure or dislike - i.e. to perform the five obligatory pillars of Islam. Allah says, recorded in a hadeeth qudsi, “And the most beloved things with which My slave comes nearer to Me is what I have enjoined upon him.”11 


THE RIGHTEOUS WOMAN should know the rights of her husband upon her and should obey him in all that is obedience to Allah. When Mu'aadh (radiy Allahu 'anhu) came to the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam) and wanted to make sajdah (prostration) to him [as an act of respect], he (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam) stopped him and said, “If I were to order anyone to prostrate himself before another, I should order a woman to prostrate herself before her husband.”12 This is because of the great position of the husband with regards to his wife. He (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam) also said,



“Whenever a man calls his wife to their bed but she refuses to come, letting him spend the night angry with her, she is cursed by the angels until she relents.”13

And he (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam) also said,


“By the o­ne in whose Hand is the soul of Muhammad! No woman has fulfilled her obligations to her Lord until she has fulfilled her obligations to her husband. Even if he were to ask her for herself when she is mounted in the saddle, she would not refuse his request.”14

These ahaadeeth emphasize the great responsibility of the woman to obey her husband in all that is in obedience to Allah, for surely obedience to the husband is part of obedience to Allah. Allah has ordered the woman to be obedient to her husband and the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam) praised the woman who brings happiness and pleasure to her husband. He (sallallahu 'alayhi wassallam) said,


“Marry the loving and fertile, for I will compete with the other prophets with the number of my followers.”15
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