Tag Archives: islam en hispanoamerica

There is no such thing as true love… Or is there?

15 Jul

This is directed to those people that happen to love a person more than they love Allah. If you are one of them, then listen up.

Love is not the fairy tale it seems to be. Neither is it forever. To be more realistic, nothing in this life is forever. We all die. We all retire our jobs. We all grow old and lose our young attractions. There is nothing that speaks stronger in this life than death. Because some can lose their jobs and others won’t, but as Allah (subhana wa ta’aala) says in the Qur’an:

Every soul will taste death. (Qur’an, 3:185)

So why are we so attached to these worldly desires? It is clear proof that we will all perish, pass away, and new generations will substitute our position in this life.

People will hurt you, even when you least expect it.

They will forget about you.

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Their love is limited.

Whether it be your spouse, your parents, or anyone you had a strong connection with, in the end it is a temporary love or one that will eventually hurt you.

You will get your heart broken, they will lose trust in you, and the word “forgiveness” doesn’t even exist in their hearts.

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Unlike human beings, who are full of errors and mistakes, Allah (subhana wa ta’aala) is the only one that will love us even more than our own mothers do.

The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) told us:

Allah is more compassionate towards His slaves than this mother towards her child. (Reported by Muslim)

Allah will never hurt you. Allah will love you even when you are committing sin. And do you know what the most wonderful part of it is? That Allah CAN forgive us. Unlike those people that we love, if we commit mistakes they cannot forgive us for them. Allah’s mercy is bigger, greater and more important to have than any finite human being like ourselves.

Say: O My servants who have transgressed against their own souls, despair not of the mercy of Allah. Indeed, Allah forgives all sins. Truly, He is Most Forgiving, Most Merciful. (Qur’an, 39:53)

It is also narrated in this hadith qudsi (meaning that it is an interpretation of what Allah says):

O son of Adam, as long as you call upon Me and put your hope in Me, I have forgiven you for what you have done and I do not mind. O son of Adam, if your sins were to reach the clouds of the sky and then you would seek My forgiveness, I would forgive you. O son of Adam, if you were to come to Me with sins that are close to filling the earth and then you would meet Me without ascribing any partners with Me, I would certainly bring to you forgiveness close to filling it.

Subhanallah.

Allah is the MOST forgiving. This forgiveness is the only one we should seek. Because He is the only one that will judge us on the day of judgement. Let’s make du’aa for this:

Ya Rabb, make us of the pious, of the believers, whom associate none with you, whom have taqwaa deep in their hearts, whom actions are directed towards you and towards you only! Ya Rabb, we seek your forgiveness, and we ask nothing in return, only of what you shall bestow upon us. Ameen!

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Allah will never hurt us.

Allah will never try to look for revenge.

Allah loves us and is closer to us than our jugular vein. Even after He, the All Mighty, created us with errors, He has mercy upon us and waits for our true and sincere forgiveness.

Now tell me, who in this world is like that?

Who, from the people you love, has these qualities? No one. Because Allah (subhana wa ta’aala) is incomparable.

This is why we shouldn’t love people more than we love Allah. Because His love is the only pure, merciful and beneficent love we need in our lives.

Sufficient for us is Allah. (Qur’an, 3:173)

Allah will never forget us.

Unlike people, Allah will remember us if we remember Him. Allah (subhana wa ta’aala) says in the Qur’an:

So remember Me; I will remember you. (Qur’an, 2:152)

Allah’s love is limitless.

His love for us has no boundaries. For humans, if we commit a mistake, they forget us, they say mean things to us and forget about the love and connection you once had with them.

For Allah, this is not the same. Even after we have fallen in sin, even if our sins are thicker than the foam of the sea, if we ask for his sincere forgiveness, Allah will forgive us. Insha’Allah.

Take my story as an example. Before becoming Muslim, I was in the worst of sins. If I would have died in this state, I would have gone to hell because of it. Allah (subhana wa ta’aala) says to us in the Qur’an:

Indeed, Allah does not forgive association with Him, but He forgives what is less than that for whom He wills. (Qur’an, 4:48)

Also, Allah says to us:

O my son, do not associate [anything] with Allah . Indeed, association [with him] is great injustice. (Qur’an, 31:13)

If Allah wished, He could have made me die in that state of shirk (associating others with Allah). Because He ta’aala has proven to us many times how hundreds of people die in the state of shirk every single day. In my country it is hundreds each day! May Allah protect us from those that do.

But Allah is so merciful, He has chosen us to be Muslims, from this darkness that we are in. Even after we have committed the worse sin there is for Allah, He still forgives us and gives us time to repent!

Where will you find someone like this in this dunya (world)?

People are greedy, selfish, stubborn and egotistic. Their only desire is to please themselves. There is no true love for many people, and it is only until you get hurt by them that you realize what their true intentions really were.

It is hard for us to forgive others. There are those that never accept forgiveness from you, no matter how true and pure your repentance is.

But for Allah we can commit sin as many times, that if we truly repent from our hearts, He will forgive us. Subhanallah, all Glory be to Allah!

Let us take advantage of this Ramadan to seek forgiveness from our Rabb, our Lord. This is the month to ask for sincere forgiveness to Allah, so do not take it lightly!

When you are sad, stressed out, or in depression, read Qur’an and you will see how peace will enter your heart by remembering Allah.

Verily, in the remembrance of Allah do hearts find rest. (Qur’an 13:28)

And Allah knows best.

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My Pre Ramadan To-Do List

4 Jul

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As a means to help others out there who aren’t quite sure what they can do right before Ramadan begins, I’ve decided to share this list with you on things you can do just before Ramadan.

I know many people are too busy with work, school, children or other time consuming activities, so insha’Allah this list will help you prepare for Ramadan.

Before I begin, it’s important to highlight this following hadith:

Abu reported that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “When half of Sha’ban remains, then do not fast.” [at-Tirmidhi]

Fasting this last week is not recommended. I had the intention of fasting a few weeks ago, but Alhamdulillah I found this hadith narrating the importance it is to not fast right before Ramadan.

Plan a food calendar.

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If this is your first Ramadan, or you are unsure of what to eat for suhoor and iftar, then plan ahead. Make sure to base your early breakfast – suhoor – around enough vitamins and nutrients to help you withstand the long hours of fasting throughout the day.

The Messenger of Allah (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) would break his fast with ripe dates before he would pray. If those were not available, he would eat dried dates. If those were not available, he would drink some water. [Abu Dawud]

It was Sunnah (prophetic way) for the Prophet (saws) to break his fast with dates, and if they were not available then with water.

Watch Ramadan Prep series on QuranWeekly.com

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An easy way to help you learn before Ramadan, to prepare you and to spend some time remembering Allah ta’aala (dhikr) is by watching these informative videos. There is a new video up every night at 7:00 p.m. Costa Rican time if you are interested in watching them. You can look back to the previous 4 videos they have up to catch up, and they also have the videos from last year’s Ramadan Prep series if you’d like to learn from those as well. Insha’Allah we can learn how to prepare ourselves for Ramadan before it finally comes.

Learn a new Surah

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A great and simple way to improve yourself before Ramadan is by memorizing a part of the Qur’an.

Whether it be an ayat, or an entire Surah to recite in our Salat (prayers), it is very important to take advantage of this month and actually learn from the Qur’an.

How many people fast just with their bodies? The true fasting is that which is in the heart, abstaining from evil thoughts and devoting your time and effort to learning and acting upon the Qur’an.

This website will help you learn to memorize a Surah or Ayat of the Qur’an: www.MountHira.com

Hear a short Podcast from Bayyinah Institute.

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These small podcasts are free, and open to anyone in desire to improve their emaan.

I know that here in my country, the ummah is spread around the country in different parts. Therefore, I can’t indulge myself in the activities held in the masjid for distance and financial reasons, so what better way than to learn Qur’an through the Internet.

So far I’ve listened to the first 21 ayats of Surah Al Baqarah from two separate podcasts. They have helped me learn what these ayats truly hold, and the ustadh Nouman Ali Khan is a great teacher to obtain knowledge from.

Here is the link to the podcasts. Feel free to download or hear as many as you’d like. Just remember that it is better to hear a short 30 minutes per night than to try to hear 2 hours of tasfeer, which can be exhausting to the mind.

http://podcast.bayyinah.com/category/002-surah-al-baqarah/

Learn and practice du’aas

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Another simple way to prepare yourself for Ramadan is to practice easy du’aas before and after an action. Not only is this beneficial to you, but also you will learn to perform actions for the sake of Allah (subhana wa ta’aala) and achieve humbleness and taqwaa (fear or piety to Allah).

You can find tons of duaa’s online and websites that can help you memorize duaa’s.

I recommend you write them down, and hang them around your room for you to memorize them. For example the du’aa said when you wake up and before you go to bed you can hang next to your bed so you can remember to recite it. Or even saving them on your phone is a good idea.

I will leave you with a du’aa to help you retain whatever you listen to or read.

According to Imam Ali ibn abi Talib to retain in memory whatever one listens or reads, recite the following dua’a after every obligatory salat.

In the name of Allah the most kind the most merciful.

Glory be to Him who does not treat the citizens of His kingdom unjustly.

Glory be to Him who does not let the torment and pain come suddenly upon mankind.

Glory be to the compassionate the merciful.

O Allah, fill my heart with true enlightenment, wisdom, understanding and knowledge.

Surely you are able to do all things.

SUBH’AANA MAN LAA YA-TADEE AA’LAA AHLI MAMLAKATIHEE SUBH’AANA MAN LAA YAAKHUD’U AHLAL ARZ’I BILWAANIL A’D’AABI SUBH’AANAR RA-OOFIR RAH’EEMI ALLAAHUMMAJ-A’L LEE FEE QALBEE NOORAN WA BAS’ARAN WA FAHMAN WA I’LMAN INNAKA A’LAA KULLI SHAY-IN QADEER

Commit yourself to watching a Ramadan series video every day

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There are two Ramadan series I’ll be watching this Ramadan insha’Allah.

The first one is from Qur’an Weekly, called the Quranic Gems. You can watch the video on their website, and tune in every day to hear a specific part of the Juz for that day commented on. Here is the link to their website: http://www.quranweekly.com/quranic-gems-series-ramadan-special/

The second series I’ll be watching insha’Allah are live clases every day for the month of Ramadan. Here is the link, and you can enroll for free with your name and e-mail account. http://www.ramadanwithquran.com

Insha’Allah you can enroll as well. If you have any other series we can watch for Ramadan please link in the comment section for others to benefit from.

Make voluntary prayers

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We all know we are obliged to complete our fard prayers every day. Another simple yet rewarding way to improve your emaan is to also make Sunnah prayers when you perform your Salat. Not only will this help you strengthen your connection and taqwaa with Allah (swt), but when you are feeling down or spiritually low, you will sacrifice making your Sunnah or voluntary prayers, but not sacrifice your fard prayers.

When Ramadan comes, you will be performing your five salat, and on top of that making voluntary prayers as well. Thus, your emaan will grow insha’Allah.

Our prayer will be the first thing questioned upon on the day of Judgment. Allah (swt) says in the following hadith:

The Messenger (S.A.W.) told us in an authentic hadith , “The first thing the people will be accountable for on the Day of Judgment is prayer, Allah will say to His angels (even though he already knows) : “Look at my servants prayers. Were they complete or not?” If they were complete It will be written as complete. If they were not fully complete Allah will say: “See if my servant has voluntary prayers, If he has them Allah will say: Complete his obligatory prayers shortage with his voluntary prayers.” Then the rest of his deeds will be dealt with in the same manner.” {Reported by Imams Ahmad, Abu Dawood, An-Nisa’i, and Al-Hakim}

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Insha’Allah this list will help you improve your emaan and help yourself prepare for Ramadan.

Remember that fasting without true emaan and having true intentions, is not the same as if you just fasted with your body. Fasting is far more than abstaining from food and drink. It is also a means for you to come closer to Allah, to fast with the heart and for the intention to be only for the sake of Allah.

“and fast, it is better for you, if only you knew” [al-Baqarah, 2:184]

Thoughts on Halal (Lawful) Meat

16 May

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As-salaam alaykum. So I get daily hadiths sent to my e-mail that I like to read each night. Today’s hadith was rather interesting, and I thought it would be very important to mention as it includes anyone living in a non-Muslim country.

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Narrated Abu Tha’laba Al-Khushani (Radi-Allahu ‘anhu):

I said, “O Allah’s Prophet! We are living in a land ruled by the people of the Scripture; Can we take our meals in their utensils? In that land there is plenty of game and I hunt the game with my bow and with my hound that is not trained and with my trained hound. Then what is lawful for me to eat?” He said, “As for what you have mentioned about the people of the Scripture, if you can get utensils other than theirs, do not eat out of theirs, but if you cannot get other than theirs, wash their utensils and eat out of it. If you hunt an animal with your bow after mentioning Allah’s Name, eat of it. and if you hunt something with your trained hound after mentioning Allah’s Name, eat of it, and if you hunt something with your untrained hound (and get it before it dies) and slaughter it, eat of it.”

Bukhari Vol. 7 : No. 387

 —

I’ve always had questions on whether or not we should eat meat – obviously pork not included – that comes from a non-Muslim butcher. However, I’ve taken the easy way out and have decided to hide these doubts at the back of my head ever since I reverted to Islam.

Now however, after reading this hadith I realized that this is of great importance and shouldn’t be taken lightly.

Also, it had come up in one of my conversations with the man that introduced me to Islam on whether or not I should share the same utensils with my family, since they do happen to eat pork.

It’s funny, how this afternoon my family and I went to do the groceries and my brother went with my mom to pick out some meat at the stands. I stayed back and waited for them, and I could see how my mom took some pork sausages, and I saw my brother telling her to buy the chicken one instead. It made me smile, as I could read out his lips, explaining to her that I didn’t eat pork.

Alhamdulillah my family respects this.

One time my brother made lunch, and I could see how proud he was after serving it to us. It was some spaghetti with sauce, but once I took the first bite I knew he had added ham to it. Very politely, I told him if he had added ham to it, and he said he did. When I told him that I didn’t eat pork, he apologized multiple times, and even asked me if he should make something else for me.

Subhanallah, what a nice family I have. Despite the fact that they don’t share my religious beliefs (although I do ask Allah (subhana wa’ tala) to guide them towards the right path that is Islam), they still respect my decisions.

Anyways, back to the main topic.

This hadith answers my questions about whether or not I should eat “halal” meat, not slaughtered by Muslims, and if I should share my eating utensils with my family.

The first part of this hadith talks about the utensils you use to eat. If you cannot find utensils of your own, you should therefore wash the ones that the non-believers use. This I do always; disinfecting utensils is of vital importance nowadays, and it’s something that I’m very careful about.

Another option would be that if you have the capability of obtaining your own utensils and having them separate from the non-believers, than you should do so. However, I find this very isolating and personally couldn’t do this. Imagine how uncomfortable having “your own” utensils; I’d feel greedy somehow, and would feel like I’m slowly isolating myself from them.

I understand my family is not Muslim, but I also always wash the utensils I use, and I also know they don’t drink alcohol in them.

Finally, it mentions the eating of meat from non-believers. The hadith is very clear on this point. It says, paraphrasing of course, that you can eat from the meat that you have caught and that have mentioned the name of Allah before slaughtering it. In other words, if the name of Allah is not mentioned before the animal that is killed, then don’t eat it.

In other words, become a vegetarian.

I always wondered if I could eat meat that wasn’t killed in the name of Allah, and this hadith shows me that I can’t.

This explains why Muslims always try to find “halal restaurants” when they dine out like in the United States or other countries. I always thought to myself, why don’t they just eat vegetarian meals instead?

But being Muslim isn’t about being a vegetarian.

You can eat meat as a Muslim; it’s a natural human desire. Did you know that it’s been scientifically proven that men get happier when they’re told they’ll have meat for dinner?

And as a matter of fact, I don’t want to be a vegetarian. How boring, the life of a vegetarian. They try to “save animals,” somehow believing if they don’t eat meat they’ll get everyone to be vegetarian just like them.

And I also feel like vegetarians are always picky, gay and annoying.

It’s like something only “rich people” would do, since they can now choose their food.

I can imagine what my grandmother would have thought if one of her children came up to her and told her “I’m a vegetarian now.” She would have wooped that child, since back in the day my father and his family didn’t have much to eat. Alhamdulillah that has changed.

What I mean to say is that I don’t like vegetarians because they throw away perfectly edible food just “to save the animals.” It’s something I don’t believe is beneficial to anyone.

However, when it comes to Allah (subhana wa’tala) there are some sacrifices you must do for the sake of Allah.

When we pray, we say At-tayatu lillahi was-salawatu wa-tay yibatu which translates to: All prayers and worship through words, actions and sanctity are for Allah only.

We should do every act in our lives for the sake of Allah only. Not for the animals. Not for any other bunch of pathetic excuses vegetarians use, because all they really want is the attention they desperately find to being accepted into society.

So no matter how difficult it can be, I understand the importance to find halal meat, and this includes that which has been slaughtered in the name of Allah.

This will be hard to find. Especially here in Costa Rica.

You see, for those not familiar with Latin countries, we’re a bit of a “haram” culture in certain things.

For instance, ticos (Costa Ricans) love pig. You will always see pork being served in every party, like chicharrones, gallos de chancho, picadillo de chancho, etc. There will always be a barbecue outside with pork being the main dish on the menu.

Also, alcohol is indispensable in my family parties. There always has to be beer, wine, whisky, tequila; anything with alcohol in it is acceptable in Latin society.

And finally, how can you exclude the Latin music and the tons of dancing there is in every party. I love Latin music, it’s always so cheerful and it makes you want to dance to the rhythm. But put pork, alcohol and music together and you’re in one big haram mess.

But it’s not impossible to be Muslim in this country.

I’ve heard of a Turkish bakery in San José, so they must be Muslim; and I’m pretty sure the imam and his family at the masjid in San José buy their meat somewhere halal.

Insha’Allah I can find a way to eat halal, even if it means sacrificing my love for meat, all in the name of Allah (subhana wa’tala).

For those living in non-Muslim countries, know that you are not alone. This hadith is clear evidence of the importance of eating halal, since it helps purify and clean our body and mind.

May Allah grant us guidance, reward us for our good deeds, forgive us from our bad ones, and continue blessing us with health, love for His word, and submission to his will.

Chao.

What does the Qur’an say about the Bible?

11 Mar

Bismillah hirRahman nirRaheem

In the name of Allah, the Most Compassionate, the Most Merciful

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There are a lot of Muslims that talk bad about the Bible and Jewish scriptures. They have no knowledge whatsoever. In the Qur’an these scriptures are mentioned and discussed about in a rather positive light.

During my investigating prior to becoming a Muslim alhamdullilah (all praise be to Allah) I decided to investigate the topic of the Bible. I wanted to know what the Qur’an had to say about the Bible; not just what Muslims say, as we as people are imperfect, but the word of Allah isn’t.

I’ve mentioned this book in an earlier blog post, but I’ll mention it again, as it cannot get enough recognition of how meticulous and outstanding the amount of research and effort put into it is. It’s called The Bible, the Qur’an and Science by Dr. Maurice Bucaille, and by clicking the title you will be sent to another page where you can download it from.

It’s a very exhaustive study on the Bible, and then on the Qur’an.

What I can get out of it that will help support my article is the amount of data it complies to explain how the Bible has contradicted itself in many parts of the chapters, as well as the errors and unlikeliness in it.

However, the point here isn’t to degrade the Bible, no matter what translation you may have in your hands, but in fact to take the essence of it out to expose its main idea: the oneness of God.

The Torah, other Jewish scriptures and the Bible all mention the oneness of God. If you can find one sentence in the Bible where our beloved prophet Jesus (peace be upon him) states clearly and evidently says that “he is God,” I would be astonished by your false accusations.

Never is it mentioned in these scriptures that Jesus (pbuh) came down on earth and admitted being God on earth. Now of course it’s been twisted and manipulated by man in a way that the trinity is invented from it, as well as affirming that Jesus is the one son of God, but these things are never truly mentioned being said by the prophet himself.

So why so much hatred from the Muslim community?

If you take the Qur’an and read it, you won’t be able to support your accusations towards the Bible, even if the Bible was written by humans and manipulated over the course of time. And that is a topic I’d like to later discuss.

But the question lies in what then does the Qur’an say about these scriptures?

Now prepare yourself, the Muslim-rejecters reading this, for what you’re about the read.

Before I continue further on, I’d like to inform you that I am in no way a scholar of any sort, but in fact a learner of Islam as you. If you would like to truly confirm a valid opinion, do so with your imam at your nearest mosque, or a sheikh or scholar of Islam.

The Qur’an does actually talk about the Bible. In fact, those that follow Biblical and Jewish scriptures are mentioned as people of the Book:

O People of the Book! (5:68).

Allah mentions how there are those unfaithful Christians and Jews, as there are unfaithful Muslims, that have taken the scriptures and corrupted them, in a way that they made it seem it were from Allah.

But the transgressors changed the word from that which had been given them (2:59).

This is purely out of self-recognition and claiming that they were enlightened from above; something that Allah says did not truly happen.

There were also those that would “guess” things as well as make them public in a way to obtain an income from this.

Among them are unlettered folk who know the Scripture not except from hearsay. They but guess. Therefore woe be unto them who write the Scripture with their hands and then say, “This is from Allah,” that they may purchase a small gain therewith (2:78-79).

So as you can see, the Qur’an clearly acknowledges the faults that have been made by these false believers of the Book. This is important to know, since therefore we don’t actually know precisely which parts of the Bible and Torah have been afflicted by these unfaithful ones.

Another misconception is that many believe Muslims don’t even believe in the Bible. They believe that Muslims do not accept these scriptures and that they therefore probably don’t believe in the prophet Jesus and the rest of the prophets (peace be upon them all).

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Islam is the continued and last religion of those that came before the prophet Muhammed (salalahu alayhi wa’salam).

The same religion has He established for you as that which He enjoined on Noah … and that which We enjoined on Abraham, Moses, and Jesus (42:13).

Islam is an Arabic word that means: “submission to God.” It does not mean worshipping the prophet, it does not mean worshipping some other God or Gods. In fact, the word Allah is a word that Allah has given himself as it cannot be corrupted by man to mean something else.

The word God has been used in the past to represent false gods and idols, for instance in Greek mythology with the god Zeus that overpowered the rest of the “minor” gods.

You can even take the word God and create “gods” from it by simply adding an “s” at the end of the word, or give God a gender by creating “goddess” and making the word female-oriented.

Unlike this, the word ‘Allah’ you cannot change in any way. It means God in Arabic. Allah is Allah. Period. There is no changing the word to give it another meaning and you can’t make it plural, either.

So now that you see how pure and monotheistic Islam is, you will find clarity in the following ayat:

But say, “We (Muslims) believe in the Revelation which has come down to us and in that which came down to you (Jews & Christians); our Allah and your Allah is One” (29:46).

There is no distinction between the God we praise to the God Christians or Jews praise. Of course there may be a slight change in the sense that Christians have given God human-like attributes and made him a human.

This in our religion is considered shirk (idolatry or creating partners with Allah) in Tawheed al-Asmaa was sifaat (the belief that Allah is One in his attributes and that he has no similitude). Therefore, Muslims and Christians have differences in this point of view, but according to the Bible Allah does not have any partners. You can read more on this topic in my article: Why is it that Christians don’t understand Muslims? 

There is also a misconception on what Christians and other religions think Muslims worship. As is mentioned in the Qur’an:

We believe in Allah, and in what has been revealed to us and what was revealed to Abraham, Ismail, Isaac, Jacob, and the Tribes, and in (the Books) given to Moses, Jesus, and the Prophets, from their Lord: We make no distinction between one and another among them (3:84).

As Muslims, we do not worship Muhammad (saws) despite the fact that to him the Qur’an was revealed.

We must understand that both the Qur’an and the Bible are scriptures teaching us to worship one God and one God ONLY.

We do not make distinctions between any of the prophets, but we take our prophet (saws) as an example to be able to reach closer to Allah (swt).

So if the Qur’an and the Bible both believe in the unity and oneness of Allah, then why was there a need for the Qur’an?

The Qur’an came down in revelation for the following:

This Koran is not such as can be produced by other than Allah; on the contrary it is a confirmation of (revelations) that went before it, and a fuller explanation of the Book (10:37-38).

The Qur’an came down as a guardian of the scriptures before and to maintain the unity of Allah (swt) and his message to mankind. Also:

To thee We sent the scripture in truth, confirming the scripture that came before it, and guarding it in safety (5:48).

This is why the Prophet Muhammad (saws) is considered the “seal” of the Prophet Hood, since he came with the final revelation to mankind and up to this day, Muslims throughout the world have preserved this message and the tawheed (maintaining the unity of Allah). Therefore, there has been no reason to bring down further revelation.

There are numerous amount of Muslims that can recite the entire Qur’an. The ENTIRE Qur’an mash’allah (God has willed it). How many Christians do you know that can recite the ENTIRE Bible?

In fact, let’s take it to the next level.

How many Christians do you know that can recite a chapter of the Bible?

I highly doubt you know anyone who can.

When I was a Catholic, and I read this – that there are Muslims that can recite the Qur’an from cover to cover – I was truly astonished of this religion.

This is what kept me hooked to researching and investigating more and more on Islam. I would read entire books about Islam, about the Prophet, about the message of Islam, and of course the Sacred Qur’an and the authentic Hadeeths.

For a Muslim to recite the Qur’an in his day-to-day life is something that impressed me even more. I had once tried to read the Bible. To be honest with you, I couldn’t get passed the first few pages of Genesis.

But amazingly enough, I find more interest in reading the Bible and the Torah now as a Muslim, than I did when I was a Catholic.

There is a Hadeeth reported by Mu’aadh Ibn Jabal (may Allah be pleased with him) that the Prophet Muhammad (may Allah send peace and blessings on him) said:

That, a human being, will not move forward (in other words, he’ll just be fixed standing – and will not be able to move forward) on the Day of Judgment, with their Lord, unless and until they’re asked about 5 things.  (…)And about, his or her knowledge, and what they did with that knowledge? 

So even though I am Muslim and believe in the Qur’an, Allah (swt) encourages us to know the truth and not be of the ignorant. How useless it would be if we were to perform our 5 salah (prayers) without knowledge of what we are reciting or with the intention it is made.

So thus, the Qur’an is the continuity of the monotheistic religions of our fathers and forefathers. However, people have gone astray in these religions and have started worshipping idols, saints and have created false ideas about their Lord, even claiming to have a savior, when Allah (swt) is in fact our only savior and the only One that we should worship.

We as Muslims recite each and every day at least 17 times a day sura al-Fatiha. And there is an ayat (revelation) in this sura in which we ask Allah (swt) to guide us on the right path and not go astray:

The path of those upon whom You have bestowed favor, not of those who have evoked [Your] anger or of those who are astray. (1:7)

Scholars have said that the first part {The path of those upon whom you have bestowed favor} is in reference to the Muslims, the second part {not of those who have evoked [Your] anger} is talking about the Jews, and the final part {or of those who are astray} is directed to the Christians.

quran_recited

Insha’allah (God willing) there have been no errors in the document, but if there were I take all responsibility as I am finite in my knowledge, where Allah (swt) is infinite and extent from any errors.

The Qur’an encourages us to read these scriptures and not ignore them like Christians do with our prophet (saws) and the revelation. However, we are most certainly not Christians and see no dangers in obtaining valid proof.

As Muslims, if a Christian or Jew were ever to come to us with certain “valid” proof from their Bible about a certain topic, no matter what that topic may be, we can clearly say to them: “But you changed your Bible.” (And to believe this even more, go ahead and read the book by Dr. Bucaille that is outstandingly impressive).

We have clear proof from the Qur’an that they have indeed changed their scriptures and can support this with the Qur’an.

And Allah (swt) knows best.

May Allah (swt) guide you.

Chao.

References:

Campbell. (2004). The Bible as seen by the Qur’an and the Muslim traditions. Retrieved March 10, 2013, from What the Qur’an says about the Bible: http://answering-islam.org/Campbell/s2c1.html

Green, S. (2004). Answering Islam. Retrieved March 10, 2013, from What does the Qur’an say about the Jewish and Christian Scriptures?: http://answering-islam.org/Green/onbible.htm

Holy Qur’an. (n.d.). Retrieved March 10, 2013, from http://quran.com/2/170

Contact with the Opposite Gender in Costa Rica

6 Mar

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Bismillah hirRahman nirRaheem

In the name of Allah, the Most Compassionate, the Most Merciful

As Salamu ’Alaikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh. May the peace and mercy of Allah be with you. I’ve been thinking about writing on this topic for a while now but needed a bit more of validity to my opinion before I courageously posted it up.

Here in my lovely, tropical country the weather hasn’t been so pretty. Which I don’t mind, since I happen to love the cold weather. People from all across the nation greet each other with kisses, hand shakes and even occasional hugging. Hand shaking isn’t so common here but instead ticos tend to greet the opposite gender with a kiss on the cheek.

From what I’ve read there is a lot of comments and Hadeeths mentioning hand shaking with the opposite gender as being haram (illegal) or highly not recommended. This is primarily due to the Prophet’s (salalahu alayhi wa’ salam) example towards his treatment to non-mahram women (relatives).

The word used both in the Qur’an and Hadeeths to define touching is lams. Strictly speaking, this is in reference to actions that precede sexual intercourse. In other words, any act with a lust intention or fitnah (temptation) behind it.

I assume that back in the day, if you were to kiss a woman you would have the intention on marrying her. Now, in this chaotic world we are living in, even the act of sexual intercourse is not associated with marriage. I believe that even in Muslims this has slightly been corrupted in our generation.

Despite this, many scholars such as Imam Al-Shafi`i and Imam Abu Hanifah have strong arguments as to how the slightest touching of the hands can end up invalidating your wudhu or state of purity. This is further explained in the Qur’an:

O you who believe! Do not approach Salah after… lāmastum (touching) women, but if you do not find water, then perform Tayammum with clean earth, rubbing your faces and hands. Truly, Allah is Ever Oft-Pardoning, Oft-Forgiving. (4:43)

Although in the Qur’an the word touching does not state specifically what kind of touching or with what intention it’s done with, scholars have found two meanings for the act of touching the opposite gender: touching with lustful intention, and touching without this desire behind it.

I strongly believe that we as Muslims should not shake hands, let alone kiss when greeting the opposite sex no matter what your intention may be (you never know what the other person is thinking or what their intentions are). Not only is there no authentic Hadeethic proof that the Prophet (saws) was seen shaking hands with a non-mahram woman, but it’s also mentioned in the Qur’an as I quoted before.

Of course physical contact with your spouse and close family members is not considered haram, since they are mahram to you. Also, a Hadith narrated by A’isha (may Allah be pleased with her) as recorded in the Musnad of Imam Ahmad states that:

The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) used to kiss `A’ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) and then go to pray at the masjid without renewing his ablution.

It’s those not related with us that we must be careful with.

In Costa Rica, if you are already a local here you will know just how hard it is to avoid this contact with the opposite gender throughout the day. If you’re not a local, then I’ll quickly describe it for you.

In Hispanic culture, if you’re a woman you greet both male and female with a kiss. There doesn’t exist hand shaking in our culture as we find his “cold” and not friendly-like. This is usually only performed during interviews or in the work field. When greeting friends and family members you usually greet them with a kiss on the cheek. If you’re really close with them or haven’t seen them in a while you might also see people hugging.

This whole kissing thing isn’t considered strange or taboo in our culture. Boys and girls won’t giggle or feel embarrassed when greeting each other like this, unlike in other western cultures where even a hand shake is awkward.

So therefore, it’s always been a “normal” thing for me to greet people with a kiss. Whether it be an uncle or cousin, or friends from my university, I found nothing wrong or haram in it.

In fact, I once had a friend that backed away when I was going to greet her with a kiss, which I then considered her to be really weird after that happened. Now, I find it normal for her to have done that.

So what can you do if you live in a society where kissing or even hand shaking is normal between the opposite gender?

First, we must find the logic behind not greeting someone with a kiss or hand shake.

We live in a society where all these haram things are now halal to us, and this has been done through Shaytaan’s meticulous planning to make us fall astray from the path. Think to yourself. How can approaching a male and planting a kiss on his cheek not be strange for you? Would you like your husband or wife to do this with other males or females?

Not only is it disrespectful to your spouse (or future spouse), but it’s also disrespectful to you. You are giving permission to this person to touch you in this manner, so what wrong would it be if he happened to touch you on another place if you’re already allowing him to kiss you?

Once you’ve realized the wrongness in it, and how disrespectful it is for you as a woman or man, you will find it easier to want to respect your body. It’s much more peaceful to know that you are the one who decides who kisses you or touches you, then to know that any man or woman can come up to you and plant a kiss on your face.

If you don’t respect your space, then who will?

Finally, keep in consideration the word of God, the Qur’an and what it tells us:

And tell the believing women to lower their gaze and be modest, and to display of their adornment only that which is apparent (35:31)

If you dress in a modest and very “Islamic” way as I like to put it, when you tell someone that you do not greet with a kiss or with a hand shake, or with any other physical contact, they will find it easier to accept. As where if you dress like everyone else is dressing, with shorts or clothing that clings on much to tightly to your body, then they will want to laugh into your face, since you will be dressing in a manner that will obviously attract the opposite sex.

Think further into it. If you see a woman on the street with very modest clothing (like a nun in Catholicism) then you will automatically respect that woman. The way you dress makes a statement of it’s own that you won’t have to put into words each time someone will greet you.

I’m not a Hijaabi (one that wears Hijab) yet, but inshallah when I decide to use the hijab, I think that men would automatically feel drawn back from me, and they will respect my decision on whether or not I greet them the way everyone else does.

In the end, it’s all about respecting yourself.

Keep in mind that in a Hispanic culture, there will be men (or women if you’re a guy reading this) that will want to greet you with a kiss. And sometimes it’s not even in a lust manner; it’s just the way they’ve been raised up. But keep in mind that if you allow yourself to be exposed like this, you are also permitting him or her to have permission to do other things or say things to you disrespectfully. It might not happen, but you are allowing yourself to be in that situation.

If there is fear of fitnah or desire in it, then it is most surely haram.

I feel that women in my country have lost this shyness altogether. Even the men have lost their shyness towards women. When you avoid any contact with the opposite gender, you feel not only good with your effort in doing so, especially in a country where everyone greets this way, but you would also have more affection and love for those that truly care for you, such as your spouse.

Inshallah this will make you meditate (metaphorically speaking) about greeting and touching the opposite gender in your country. May Allah (swt) give you health and blessings each and every day!

Chao.

References:

al-Qaradhawi, S. Y. (4 de Junio de 2008). Shaking hands with a non Mahram. Recuperado el 5 de Marzo de 2013, de Suhaib Webb: http://www.suhaibwebb.com/islam-studies/faqs-and-fatwas/shaking-hands-with-a-non-mahram-dr-yusuf-al-qaradawi/

Holy Qur’an. (s.f.). Recuperado el 25 de Febrero de 2013, de http://quran.com/2/170

Khalfe, M. A. (s.f.). Does touching the opposite sex break ones Wudhu? Recuperado el 5 de Marzo de 2013, de http://islamictext.files.wordpress.com/2012/05/does-touching-the-opposite-sex-break-ones-wudhu1.pdf