Radiant Reality

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Regd. No.: JKENG/2000/4174
Published From  Srinagar.

Editor, Printer & Publisher: Mawlana Hamidullah Lone.

March. 2007.  VOL.8, No: 03.


1. Editorial - Islam is the solution
2. Questions & Answers

3. Lesson from Al-Quran

4. Lesson from Bukhari Sharief

5. A Muslim's income and expenditure

6. The Issue of Inheritance

7. Strength

8. Islamic Finance

9. Polishing the hearts

10. Muslims in the West

11. Children's duties to parents

12. Saviours of the Islamic Spirit


EDITORIAL

Islam is the Solution

The term "Third World" was coined in 1952, in the wake of the Second World War, to refer to the ex-colonies that were not part of the two newly emerged geopolitical blocs of associated interests. The "Third" then meant the third way.

But, the world order setup by the "First World" in the post-colonial period was even more exploitative than the one that immediately preceded it. It engineered a net transfer of wealth, at an increasing rate, from the poor countries to the rich, making the former poorer and the latter richer. While in 1820 the estimates of disparity of wealth between the richest and the poorest countries in the world were about 3:1, by 1950 the ratio had changed to 35:1, and by 1992 it had reached 72:1. Today it is even higher. Ironically the exploits have earned the exploiters a 'respectability' and the exploited a disdain. The term "Third World" has come to signify a rank, as in third class.

Then there are armies of "experts" who have been convincing everyone that the real problem of the exploited countries is that they are too "traditional" and their salvation lies in aping the progressive ways of the West. This is the essence of the modernization theory that seeks to move societies from the "traditional" to the "modern."

This discussion is of special value to the Muslims because all the Muslim countries fall in the "Third World." Today there are generations of educated Muslims who have been convinced that progress equals modernization equals westernization. For every problem they turn to the "First World" for answers, guidance, and assistance. They see their societies as decadent and attribute this decadence to their adherence to traditions and religion. Most of the rulers in the Muslim world today, unfortunately, come from this group. At the same time they claim to be Muslims and servants of Islam.

May be we can invite them to shed this hypocrisy and take an objective look at their societies. They may find out that contrary to their thinking, whatever good is there in any society, it comes from Islam. Whatever evils are there come from hypocrisy and defiance of Islam.

It is generally observed that in Muslim societies today people are neither punctual nor value time much. Their leisurely ways are in direct contrast to the world where the creed is that time is money. Islam does not promote this materialistic notion of the value of time which results in nobody having time for others. But it does teach the value of every moment of our life as providing the opportunity for earning the rewards in the hereafter. It does require us to be punctual and not to waste time. And it delivers.

In the vast Muslim world there is one enterprise that is extraordinary in its punctuality and discipline. In the big cities or the remotest rural areas, the azan is called five times a day and the people gather for the congregational prayers at the proper times without fail. Neither excessive cold in the winter nights nor excruciating heat during sizzling summer days keeps them from their sacred duty. This enterprise has not been financed by governments or big businesses. When most people are in their warm beds in their unheated homes, there is a muezzin in every neighborhood who never fails to wake up and remind everyone, "Prayer is better than sleep."

Here is a glimpse of the power of Islam. Can we imagine the situation when not just the muezzin and a small congregation, but the entire population becomes responsive to its duty? Can we imagine when their sense of responsibility goes beyond the prayers and covers all aspects of their life?

Equally fascinating is the unparalleled power of Islam in shunning social evils that are consuming the world. Despite their myriad problems, the Muslim lands even today shine as islands of virtue in a deep dark ocean of vice.

Consider Alcoholism. In the USA alone, the economic costs of Alcoholism and drug abuse are reported to be at a quarter trillion dollars per year. The social and moral costs are additional. But the solution evades world's most technologically advanced and organized society.

Actually it did try. In 1917, Congress passed the 18th Amendment, prohibiting alcohol. This was after a century of grass roots efforts, which included thousands of societies for prohibition and abstinence pledges in churches. They also allocated $5 million for enforcement to turn USA into a liquor-free society. A few years later the estimate was $300 million and growing. Organized crime started. Thirteen years later Prohibition was repealed. The "Noble Experiment" had failed miserably.

In contrast, Islam banned alcohol 14 centuries ago among people whose love for alcohol was second to none. In three simple steps, spanning only a few years, alcohol was banished from the Muslim world. Today, despite small areas of infraction, a map of the dry world coincides with the map of the Muslim world. Islam has declared alcohol to be Ummul-Khabaith (the root of all evil) and no power on earth can change that designation.

Where else but in a Muslim country (Saudi Arabia) one can find jewelry stores without armed guards, closed doors, and elaborate security systems? One of the major crimes against humanity and morality committed by the "First World" has been the exploitation of women in the form of prostitution. Whether it is legal or illegal, whether there are marked red light areas or not, it flourishes everywhere the "First World" has its way. In addition, every area visited by their armies has left behind these centers of filth. Again, the notable exception is the Muslim world.

This world was a dark place, having forgotten or distorted previous prophets' teachings, before Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) brought the light. He brought back the message of Tauheed, universal brotherhood, compassion, mercy, equality, justice, God consciousness, and morality. As Muslims turned away from Islam, the darkness started to increase again, dividing it into first, second, and third worlds. There is lot of arrogance and ignorance in these ranks. But, Islam again illuminates the way. The solution is there, if only we look in the right direction. Islam is the solution.

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Question Answer

Masail of Wudhu

Question: Due to an injury in my hand blood is usually oozing out from it and even sometimes during the Salaah there is apprehension that blood may ooze out of it. Is it permissible for me to perform Masaah over the affected area and not to wash it; or is it necessary to performs Wudhu whenever blood oozes out?

Answer: There are two Masaail in this issue. 1. If it is injurious to wash the affected area with water then it is permissible for you to perform only Masaah over the affected area and not to wash it. 2. If blood is oozing out of it every time and does not halt at any point of time then it is sufficient for you to perform Wudhu once during the stipulated time of a Salaah; and if the blood sometimes oozes out and sometimes halts, then whenever it spreads after oozing out you will have to perform Wudhu again.

Question: If blood is oozing out of ones tooth, is his Wudhu valid or not?

Answer: If he experiences the taste of blood or the colour of saliva gets inclined towards redness then his Wudhu breaks and if neither of the two things take place then his Wudhu is valid.

Question: If a person discharges air, is it necessary for him to perform Istinja or only Wudhu?

Answer: It is necessary for him to perform only Wudhu and not Istinja. To do Istinja without attending the call of nature is Bidat.

Question: What is the decree regarding the water that comes out of ones eye due to some ache?

Answer: The water that comes after ones eye due to any ache does not affect Wudhu, however if someone has a pustule in his eye and some kind of watery substance comes of it then his Wudhu breaks as this kind water is impure.

Question: It is clear that Wudhu breaks if one sleeps, but does Wudhu also break if one lies down or takes a support of something?

Answer: If one has not slept while lying or taking a support while sitting then his Wudhu is valid.

Question: Does a persons Wudhu break if he kisses his wife or vice versa?

Answer: According to Hanafi school of though, if a person kisses his wife or vice versa his Wudhu is valid until and unless he excretes Mazi (minor involuntary seminal discharge).

Question: Does a persons Wudhu break if he changes his clothes or looks at his person?

Answer: No, a person does not break his Wudhu if he changes his clothes or has a look on his person.

Question: Does a persons Wudhu break if he looks at a naked picture of someone?

Answer: To look at anyones naked picture is a grave sin, it does not break ones Wudhu but it is better to perform Wudhu again.

Question: Does ones Wudhu break if he takes his lower garments (pajama, pants etc) up beyond his knees?

Answer: If is not permissible to takes one lower garments up beyond ones knees but this act will not break his Wudhu.

Question: Does ones Wudhu break if he performs Wudhu while being naked and also touches his private parts while taking a bath? Has he to perform Wudhu again?

Answer: It is not necessary to perform Wudhu again because ones Wudhu is still valid if he gets naked or touches his private parts.

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Lesson From The Quran

Commentary: Mawln Mufti Mohammad Shafi Sahib (RA)

Verse 80

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And they say, 'The fire shall not touch us but for a few days." Say, "Have you taken a pledge from Allah and Allah will not go against His promise? Or, do you say about Allah what you do not know?'

The claim of the Jews that they would not be sent to Hell for their sins, or, if at all, only for a few days, has been interpreted by the Commentators in different ways. One of them is as follows:-

The principle is common to all the Shari'ahs that if a believer commits sins, he will receive a punishment in Hell for some time and in accordance with the degree and nature of his sins, but as he possesses '/man (faith), he will not be assigned to Hell for ever, and will be released after having served his term. Now, the argument on which the assertion of the Jews was based was that since the Shari'ah of Sayyidna Musa (Moses AS) had not, in their view, been abrogated, they were true believers (Mumins), and had not turned into infidels (Kafirs) by denying the prophethood of Sayyidna 'Isa (Jesus AS) and of Sayyidna Muhammad js ; hence - so the argument ran - if they were sent to Hell in punishment of some sin, they would again' be taken out after a few days. This false assertion is, thus based on another false assertion. The Torah never declares that the Shari'ah of Sayyidna Musa (AS) it is meant to last for ever. To claim perpetuity for it is an unfounded and false assertion, and hence the Jews who made such a claim and denied the prophethood of Sayyidna 'Isa (AS) and of Sayyidna Muhammad (S), must on account of this denial be held to be infidels and disbelievers (Kafirs). And no Book of Allah holds out to the infidels the promise that they would be released from Hell after a while. The present verse refers to such a promise as the "pledge" of Allah. Since Allah has never made such a promise, it goes to show that the Jews were making a baseless claim.

Verses 81 82

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Why not? Those who commit evil and are besieged by their sin, those are people of the Fire - there they shall remain for ever. And those who believe, and do good deeds, such are people of Paradise - there they shall remain for ever.

Having refuted the claim of the Jews as baseless, the Holy Qur'an lays down the divine law in this regard. Those who commit evil deeds knowingly and deliberately so that evil takes hold of them completely, leaving no trace of goodness - such men shall go to the Hell, and live there for ever, without any intermission or release. But those who believe in Allah and the Holy Prophet (S) - whose Shari'ah has now abrogated all the earlier Shari'ahs and who do good deeds in conformity with the Islamic Shari'ah,- it is these men who shall go to Paradise, and will live there for ever.

Let us explain how evil can take hold of a man so completely that no trace of goodness is left. This kind of thing happens only to infidels (Kafirs), and not to Muslims, even when they are sinners. For, no good deed on the part of an infidel is acceptable to Allah on account of his infidelity; even the good deeds he has done before his apostasy and infidelity are lost, and rendered null and void. That is why on the Day of Judgment, infidels will have to show nothing but evil, in punishment of which they shall live in Hell for ever. On the contrary, men of faith will, to begin with, have the greatest and highest good deed to their credit - namely, faith ('Iman) itself. Then, their secondary good deeds too are recorded in their account. So, they cannot be devoid of all goodness, and evil cannot be said to have taken hold of them completely.

In short, the infidel, according to this divine law, must always live in Hell. Since Sayyidna Musa (Moses (AS) was not the last prophet, but was followed by two other prophets, Sayyidna 'Isa (Jesus AS) and Sayyidna Muhammad (S), the Jews turned into infidels by denying these two prophets. So, in accordance with this law, they too will be assigned to Hell for ever like other infidels, and their claim that they would be released from Hell after few days can now be seen to be totally false and baseless.

Verse 83

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And when We made the children of Israel take a pledge: "You shall not worship anyone but Allah; and to parents you shall be good, and to near of kin and to orphans and the needy. And say to the people what is good, and be steadfast in Salah, and pay Zakah" Then, you went back (on your word), all but a few among you, and you are used to turning away.

This verse speaks of the pledge which Allah had made the Israelites take, and the few people it refers to as having been true to the pledge were those who acted upon the Shari'ah of Sayyidna Musa (Moses AS) as long as it was in force, and when it was abrogated, followed the Shari'ah of Sayyidna Muhammad (S).

Injunctions and related considerations

This verse brings out the basic elements common to Islam and all the earlier Shari'ahs: Tauhid (the doctrine of Unity or Oneness); service to one's parents, relations, orphans and the needy; being gentle in speaking to all human beings; Salah and Zakah.

The verse asks us to adopt a gentle tone and an open-hearted manner in speaking to others, whether they are good or evil, pious or impious, orthodox or aberrant, followers of Sunnah or adherents to partitive innovations in it. In religious matter, however, one should not try to hide the truth for the sake of pleasing people or of winning their approval. The Holy Qur'an tells us that when Allah sent Sayyidna Musa and Sayyidna Harun (Moses and Aaron AS) to the Pharaoh, He instructed them to use gentle and soft words (20:42). None of us who addresses another today can be superior to Sayyidna Musa (AS), nor can the man addressed be viler than the Pharaoh.

Talha ibn 'Umar recounts that once he said to the great master of the Sciences of Exegesis and Hadith, 'Ata', "One can see around you people who are not quite orthodox in their beliefs. As for me, I am rather short-tempered. If such people come to me, I deal with them harshly." 'Ata' replied, "Do not behave like this," and, reciting the present verse, he added, "Allah has commanded us to speak to people politely. When Jews and Christians all are to be treated like this, would this commandment not apply to a Muslim, no matter what kind of a man he is?" (Qurtubi)

Verse 84

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And when We made you take a pledge: 'You shall not shed one another's blood, and you shall not drive out one another from your homes." Then you agreed being yourselves the witness. (Verse 84)

This verse is a supplement to the previous verse, and speaks of the other articles of the pledge taken by the Israelites. They had agreed not to kill one another by engaging themselves in an internecine war, and also not to send their men into exile - that is to say, not to harass a man so as to force him to migrate.

They had willingly taken this pledge. Now, it may sometimes happen that one does not express one's willingness in so many words, but the manner of his speech suggests it. The agreement of the Israelites was not of this order, but as clear and explicit as the statement of a witness usually is.

Verse 85

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Yet, here you are, killing one another, and driving a group of your own out of their homes, supporting each other against them in sin and aggression ~ and if they came to you as prisoners, you would ransom them, though their very expulsion was unlawful for you! Do you, then, believe in some part of the Book, and disbelieve in some other? So, what can be the recompense of those among you who do that, except disgrace in present life? And, on Doomsday, they shall be turned to the most severe punishment. And Allah is not unaware of what you do.

This verse recounts how the Israelites broke the pledge they had willingly made. Allah had laid down three special injunctions for the Israelites: (1) They should not kill one another in an internecine war. (2) They should not force their own people into exile. (3) If they found a man from amongst them a prisoner of war, they should pay a ransom, and get him released. The Israelites disregarded the first two injunctions, and acted upon the third alone which they supposed easier to be carried out.

It happened like this. There lived in Madinah two tribes, the Aws and the Khazraj, who were hostile to each other, and would often go to war. In the environs of Madinah, there also lived two tribes of the Jews, the Bani Qurayzah and the Bani Nadir. The former had friendly relations with the Aws, and the latter with the Khazraj. When the Aws and the Khazraj went to war against each other, the two tribes of the Jews also took part in the battle, each on the side of its own friends. In these battles, many Jews lost their lives or were rendered homeless as much as the non-Jews. In other words, the Jews of the Bani Qurayzah tribe had a share in the slaughter and exile of the Jews of the Bani Nadir tribe, and vice versa. However, when some of the Jews became prisoners of war, each of the two Jewish groups would persuade their respective friends among the non-Jews to accept a ransom and to release the prisoners. When they were asked why they showed such a solicitude for the prisoners, they would say that it was obligatory for them to get prisoners released. But when someone objected to their helping the non-Jews in slaughtering the Jews, they used to reply that it would be a real disgrace if they did not go to the aid of their friends, even if they were not Jews.

So, the present verse exposes their duplicity and their perversity. The Holy Qur'an indicts their behaviour as "sin and aggression," and this suggests that the Israelites were infringing on two kinds of rights -- the right of Allah, by disobeying Him; and the right of His creatures, by inflicting pain and loss on them.

The verse proceeds to reprimand them for accepting certain injunctions laid down in the Torah, while rejecting others, and following their own whims in both the cases. At the end, this long verse announces the grave punishment for such misdeeds the Israelites will have to bear in this world as well as in the other.

Let it be clearly understood that the Jews referred to in this verse had already become infidels (Kafirs) by refusing to accept and affirm the prophethood of Sayyidna Muhammad (S). But instead of referring to this aspect of their infidelity, the verse points out another aspect. It reprimands them for having faith ('Iman) only in some part of the Book (Torah) and not having faith in some other. If we take the words of the present verse literally, it means that the Jews had become infidels by not having faith in some parts (that is to say, some injunctions) of the Torah. For, a Divine Book has to be accepted as a whole; to reject a part is to reject the whole, and clearly amounts to disbelief and infidelity (Kufr). But if we interpret the present verse in a different way, and take it to be reprimanding the Jews for not acting upon certain injunctions, then a question would arise here: How is it that the verse delineates their infringement of certain commandments as Kufr or infidelity, although a believer cannot be considered an infidel so long as he accepts, at least in principle, the distinctions between the Halal (lawful) and the Haram ( unlawful) exactly as laid down by the Shari'ah? The answer to the question is that when a sin is very grave, the idiom of the Shari'ah sometimes delineates it as Kufr (infidelity) in order to emphasize its gravity and its moral nature. This is also what the hadith intends to do when it says: He who gave up the Salah wilfully became an infidel."

This second interpretation does not, however, attenuate or modify the Kufr (infidelity) of the Jews of which they had already been guilty by denying the prophethood of Sayyidna Muhammad (S).

The verse announces that the Jews will have to bear a punishment not only in the other world, but in this world too - in the shape of humiliation and disgrace. It took place as it had been foretold. In the time of the Holy Prophet (S) himself, the Jews of the Bani Qurayzah tribe had to lose their lives or to undergo imprisonment, and those of the Bani Nadir tribe were expelled for having broken the pact they had earlier made with the Muslims.

A doctrinal point

Verse 85 announces the "punishment" for Jews. One may very well ask here why the direst punishment should be reserved for the Jews, and not for atheists, for the Jews at least believe in Allah. The famous Commentator 'Alusi says in his "Ruh al-Ma'ani" that every punishment meted out to the infidels will be "the direst" in the sense that it will have no end or limit. So, what the verse implies is not that the punishment given to the Jews will be more severe than the one given to all the other infidels, but that they will be given the kind of punishment which is "the direst" in the sense of having no end or limit. In other words, the verse suggests that the punishment given to the infidels will be more severe than the one given to Muslim sinners. But if there are going to be different degrees in the punishment meted out to different kinds of infidels, it does not in any way go against the implications of this verse. (Bayan al-Qur'an)

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Lesson From The Bukhari Sharief

Dr. Rafiq Ahmad

Hadith No. 50

( ) ( ) ( ) ( )

Narrated by an-Noman bin Bashir (RA)

I heard Allh's Apostle (Sallallhu Alaihi Wasallam) saying, 'Both legal and illegal things are evident but in between them there are doubtful (suspicious) things and most of the people have no knowledge about them. So whoever saves himself from these suspicious things saves his religion and his honor. And whoever indulges in these suspicious things is like a shepherd who grazes (his animals) near the Hima (private pasture) of someone else and at any moment he is liable to get in it. (O people!) Beware! Every king has a Hima and the Hima of Allh on the earth is His illegal (forbidden) things. Beware! There is a piece of flesh in the body if it becomes good (reformed) the whole body becomes good but if it gets spoilt the whole body gets spoilt and that is the heart.

NarratorHadhrat Noman bin Bashir

An-No'man bin Bashir (RA) is the son of Bashir bin Sa'd (RA) who embraced Islm in 'Aqba-Thania'. He participated in all Gazwas including Badr. His mother was the sister of a famous suhabi namely Abdullah bin Rawaha (RA). Noman bin Bashir (RA) was born in 3nd year of Hijrah and is called (First born child in Islm) after Hijrah of Ansr from Madinah as Abdullah bin Zubair (RA) was the first born child in Islm after Hijrah of Muhjireen. Hadhrat No'man bin Bashir (RA) was the governor of Hamas and Kofa during Khilfat of Hadhrat Mwiyah (RA). There are one hundred and fourteen Ahdith narrated on his authority, of which five are agreed upon. He died in 64 Hijrah, may Allh be pleased with his soul and elevate his rank.

Status of the Hadith

This Hadith is one of the great Ahdith. Some people say that it is one third of Islm. Imm Abu Dawood has chosen four Ahdith from a total of five lac Ahdith, which he thinks are enough for one's Deen and this is one among these Ahdith. These Ahdith are:

1)

2)

3)

4)

Comments

Hadhrat No'man bin Bashir (RA) says that he heard Rasulullah (Sallallhu Alaihi Wasallam) as saying that Hall (Permissible things in the Shariah) is quite evident and Harm (forbidden things in Shari'ah) is also evident. A believer is supposed to act upon Hall and to refrain from Harm. But there are a good number of things where one gets confused whether these are Hall or Harm. It is these things which are labelled as "Mushtabiht" . In this Hadith Rasulullah (Sallallhu Alaihi Wasallam) says that one who keeps himself away even from doubtful things or Mushtabiht, he will definitely save his Deen.

Hall and Harm is evident

This means that a particular thing being Hall is proved beyond any doubt by the four sources of Fiqh i.e., the Qur'an, Hadith, consensus of the Ummah (Ijma-) and Qayyas (juristic reasoning). There is no difference of opinion in the Ummah about these things being Hall or Harm. Such doubtless Hall things are to be taken and acted upon without any hesitation and such doubtless Harm things are to be abstained from. This is the common man's grade of Taqw (Piety).

Mushtabiht

There are many things which fall between the two groups i.e., clear-cut Hall and clear-cut Harm, and these are called Mushtabiht or doubtful things. There are many things which make them doubtful. Allmah Khattabi says that one should not understand that there is nothing known about these things in Shariah because Allh has ordained about everything. But the thing is that the statement of Shari'ah about a particular thing is sometimes not told in clear terms and common people do not find easy answers to such things and hence become doubtful as regards the common man but are not doubtful near Allh or Shari'ah or the learned people. This thing is clear from the wording of this Hadith only which says that many people do not know it, which indirectly means that some people know it. Then the message of this Hadith would be that anyone who does not know the status of a particular thing as regards to Hall or Harm, should remain away from it till he comes to know about its true nature from the learned scholars of Islm. If it turns to be Hall, he can go for it and if it turns to be Harm than he should leave it.

Imm Nawawi says that Mushtabiht are those things about which the proofs of being Hall or Harm, are contradictory. He says that it will be better to leave them even if some Mujtahid grants its permission. This type of Taqw is called Vara ().

Some examples of Mushtabiht

The rulings applicable in Dharul-Harb ( ) and Dharul-Islm ( ) are different . There are certain things which become permissible in Dharul-Harb but are forbidden in Dhar-ul-Islm. Now, if it is not clear whether a particular country should be called Dharul-Harb or Dharul-Islm, it is better not to consider those things permissible which otherwise become permissible.

Women have been asked not to visit grave yards but there is another Hadith which says that not going to grave yards has not been made obligatory on them. There seems to be a contradiction, in such an event going of women to grave yards has become doubtful, so it would be better for them not to go.

Some times a thing is quite Hall but others get confused about it, and there is every apprehension that they may put false allegations against the doer, that time it is better to avoid such situations, though one is doing quite permissible job. Once Rasulullah (Sallallhu Alaihi Wasallam) was accompanying his wife Safiyah during night, two men from Ansr passed by, Rasulullah (Sallallhu Alaihi Wasallam) at once told them that she is my wife Safiya. By doing this Rasulullah (Sallallhu Alaihi Wasallam) closed any opportunity of Satan to put wrong thing in their minds.

So whoever saves himself from these suspicious things saves his religion and his honour

By leaving doubtful things one saves both his religion as well as his honour. People take in high esteem a person who avoids even a doubtful thing and regard him as a pious man. For example, any person who avoids a particular medicine which contains alcohol is considered very pious by the people. One who takes pains to avoid even doubtful things he is very unlikely to commit sins and as such he will definitely save his Deen. And whoever indulges in these suspicious things is like a shepherd who grazes his cattle near the Hima (private pasture) of someone else and at any moment his cattle is liable to get in it.

What is Hima?

In olden days the kings used to select a fertile piece of green pasture as their private pasture and would punish any one grazing his cattle therein. So, the shepherds usually grazed their cattle far away from it fearing that that they might be punished as there is every possibility that these cattle may get in the forbidden pasture.

Hima of Allh is His forbidden things

Allmah Shabir Uthmni says that man is like a shepherd and his Nafs is like cattle and the doubtful things are like the surroundings around the Hima (private pasture of Allh i.e., His Forbidden things). So, the Nafs which takes the forbidden things is likely to indulge in Harm things.

Beware! There is a piece of flesh

Beware! There is a piece of flesh in the body if it becomes good (reformed) the whole body becomes good and if it gets spoilt the whole body gets spoilt, listen that is heart.

In this Hadith it is said that one can save his religion and honour if one avoids the forbidden things and in this part of the Hadith it is said that one can achieve this thing by concentrating on the Qalb. If the Qalb becomes purified from all the worldly filth then it would be easy to achieve higher grades of Taqw.

 

Chapter (Bb) 41 : "To pay one fifth of the war booty (in the name of Allh) is a part of faith.

Purpose of Tarjamatul Bb

Imm Bukhari is enumerating the branches of Imn and he has kept this thing as last probably because some people sometimes get the booty after death.

 

Hadith No. 51

Narrated by Hadhrat Abu Jamra (RA)

I used to sit with Ibn 'Abbas and he made me sit on his sitting place. He requested me to stay with him in order that he might give me a share from his property. So I stayed with him for two months. Once he told (me) that when the delegation of the tribe of 'Abdul Qais came to the Prophet, the Prophet asked them, "Who are the people (i.e. you)? (Or) who are the delegate?" They replied, "We are from the tribe of Rabi'a." Then the Prophet said to them, "Welcome! O people (or O delegation of 'Abdul Qais)! Neither will you have disgrace nor will you regret." They said, "O Allh's Apostle! We cannot come to you except in the sacred month and there is the infidel tribe of Mudar intervening between you and us. So please order us to do something good (religious deeds) so that we may inform our people whom we have left behind (at home), and that we may enter Paradise (by acting on them)." Then they asked about drinks (what is legal and what is illegal). The Prophet ordered them to do four things and forbade them from four things. He ordered them to believe in Allh Alone and asked them, "Do you know what is meant by believing in Allh Alone?" They replied, "Allh and His Apostle know better." Thereupon the Prophet said, "It means:

To testify that none has the right to be worshipped but Allh and Muhammad is Allh's Apostle.

To offer prayers perfectly

To pay the Zakh (obligatory charity)

To observe fast during the month of Ramadan.

And to pay Al-Khumus (one fifth of the booty to be given in Allh's Cause).

Then he forbade them four things, namely, Hantam, Dubba,' Naqir Ann Muzaffat or Muqaiyar; (These were the names of pots in which alcoholic drinks were prepared) (The Prophet mentioned the container of wine and he meant the wine itself). The Prophet further said (to them): "Memorize them (these instructions) and convey them to the people whom you have left behind."

Comments

Al-Khumus means one fifth of the booty one gets after participating in the war fought in the way of Allh. Imm Bukhari wants to convey that paying of this Khumus is also part of faith. Allh Tal says in the Qur'an:

"And know that out of all the booty that ye may acquire (in war) a fifth share is assigned to Allh and to the apostle and to near relatives orphans the needy and the wayfarer if ye do believe in Allh and in the revelation We sent down to Our servant on the day of testing the day of the meeting of the two forces. For Allh hath power over all things." (8:41)

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A Muslim's Income and Expenditure

Mawlana Ashraf Ali Thanvi (RA)

Ways and means of income, earning one's livelihood and spending such income should confirm with the Shari'ah. Hadhrat Ibn Mas'ood (RA) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said: "On the Day of Qiyaamah no one will be able to move (on the occasion of Hisaab Reckoning) until a reckoning of five things has not been taken..."Tirmidhi

Among the 'five things' mentioned in the above Hadith, two questions pertain to income and expenditure. One will be asked: "How did you earn your living and how did you spend your income?"

Earnings and expenses are also matters controlled and regulated by the Deen. In this sphere too, there should be no contraventions of the Shari'ah. Income must not be derived by unlawful means, e.g. riba, dealing in unlawful items, usurping the rights of others, cheating, defrauding, withholding the inheritance of any one, etc. Many people violate the Shar'ai laws of inheritance and deprive the rightful heirs of their Islamic share of the inheritance. In this way the usurpers add to their income, what is haraam and what does not belong to them.

Among the ways of earning which conflict with the Deen, is to become involved so intensively in trade and commerce that even Salaah is neglected, Aakhirah is forgotten, Zakaah and Hajj are not discharged and no time remains for one to ac-quire the essential teachings of the Deen. One should not become so much involved that there remains no time to sit in the company of some saintly person, to learn from him the essentials of the Deen. Association with the piouswith the Auliya is an important requirement for the spiritual progress of a Muslim. This facet of live should, therefore, never be neglected.

Income should not be expended in such ways, avenues and practices which are condemned by Deen. Extravagance, spending in customs which have no Shar'ai sanction, spending for the sake of gaining name, spending in unnecessary luxuries luxuries which are far in excess of one's needs, etc. are an evil ways which bring about ruin in both mundane and spiritual life.

There is nothing wrong with earning and accumulating wealth provided that one abstains from extravagance, haraam and all ways and means un-lawful in Islam. Wealth can and should be used constructively for one's own benefit as well as for the benefit of others and for rendering service to Deen. There are a variety of Deeni activities which require wealth. Therefore, a man of wealth can obtain great thawaab by earning and employing wealth in accordance with the Shari'ah. Aiding the poor and needy, contributing to Deeni projects such as Masajid, Madrassahs, works of Tableegh, etc. are wonderful channels in which to employ wealth and thereby build up one's capital in the Aakkirah.

Hadhrat Abdullah (RA) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said: "The seeking of a halaal earning is the (next) Fardh (duty) after the Fardh (Salat)."Baihaqqi

Hadhrat Abu Khimari (RA) narrates a lengthy Hadith in which Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said: "The world is for four (types) of persons. (One among the four) is a man whom Allah granted wealth as well as understanding of the Deen. He fears his Rabb and is kind (and renders service) to his relatives. And, in regard to the wealth he follows the commands of Allah and discharges rights. The man is the noblest... Tirrnidhi

Hadhrat Abu Saeed Khudri (RA), narrating a lengthy Hadith, said that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said: "Wealth is an object of pleasure. Wealth acquired in a rightful way (in accordance with the Shari'ah) and spent in a rightful way will be an aid for its owner." Bukhari, Muslim

Hadhrat Amr Ibnul Aa's (RA) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said: "Wholesome (pure) wealth for a noble person is good."Ahmad

According to Hadhrat Sufyaan Thauri (RA), wealth during the time of the Ashaab was not preferable since their hearts were ennobled with strong Imaan. Since they possessed a very strong Imaan there was no need for them to seek strength and confidence in wealth. In view of the evils normally attendant to wealth, the Ashab and the early Muslims refrained from its acquisition. However now (says Hadhrat Abu Sufyaan Thauri (RA)) wealth has become the shield of a Mumin. Since Imaan is no longer as strong as it was during former times, poverty creates worry and frustration in people. The result is deterioration in the worldly and spiritual conditions of Muslims as they no longer are able to stand up to the rigours of poverty, they compromise their Deen for worldly comforts.

Hadhrat Sufyaan Thauri (RA) also said that if we did not have wealth, the wealthy worldly people (those puffed up with pride) would have despised us held us in contempt and trampled over us in any way they wished. Hazrat Sufyaan Thauri (RA) also said that whoever is in possession of wealth should increase it and not squander it because in this age the first thing which will suffer in the event of poverty and want is one's Deen. Since people, on account of weakness of Imaan, are no longer capable of enduring the rigours of poverty, they compromise their Deen for worldly comforts.

Hazrat Abu Saeed (RA) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said: 'An honest and upright trader will be with the Ambiya, Siddiqeen and Shuhadoa (on the Day of Qiyaamah)."Tirmidhi

The great significance of lawful trade is stated in this Hadith. The lawful trader who is honest and upright will enjoy the association of the Ambiya, Saints and Martyrs in the Hereafter.

Hazrat Miqdam Bin Ma'di Karuba (RA) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said: "The noblest food ate by one is that from his (lawful) labour. Hazrat Dawood (AS) ate from the labour of his hands."Bukhari

Islam teaches the nobility and dignity of work and labour. The Ahadith explain much significance of labour. Hazrat Dawood (AS) earned his living by making armour. However, this significance applies to only such occupations which are in accordance with the teachings of Shari'ah. Haraam forms of labour and occupations, etc are haraam forms of earning. The proceeds from unlawful occupations are likewise unlawful.

Hadhrat Abu Hurairah (RA) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said: "There was not a Nabi who was not sent as a shepherd." The Ashab asked: "You also tended to sheep?" Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) replied: "I tended the goats of the people of Makkah..."Bukhari

This Hadith too asserts the significance of manual labour. Ambiya (AS) were shepherds who would look after the sheep and goats of people. Hadhrat Musa (AS) remained a shepherd, tending the goats and sheep of Hadhrat Shuaib (AS) for eight or ten years.Ahmad, Ibn Maajah.

The episode of Hazrat Musa (AS) being a shepherd is narrated in the Holy Quran as well. This again brings out the significance of manual labour.

Hazrat Thaabit Ibn Dhullaak (RA) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) permitted hiring out of land. Income derived from land and property hiring is also a lawful occupation in Islam as this Hadith indicates.

Among the noble ways of earning is farming. Much significance of farming has been mentioned in Ahadith. Hadhrat Anas (RA) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said that if any man, animal or bird eats from any tree or farm planted by a Muslim, its owner obtains the thawaab of Sadqah thereby

Hazrat Anas (RA) narrating a lengthy Hadith says that a man from among the Ansaar came to Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) and requested something. Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) sent someone to bring a mug and a mat from one house. These items Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) auctioned among the Ashab. With the money obtained for the items Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) bought some food and an axe. Giving these to the Ansaari, Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said: "Go (to the forest), cut wood and sell it. This is better for you than begging which will be a blot of disgrace on your face (on the Day of Qiyaamah)."Abu Dawood, Ibn Maajah

This Hadith establishes that a lawful occupation, no matter how menial and inferior, is better than begging.

Hadhrat Ibn Umar (RA) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said: "Allah Ta'ala loves a Mumin who engages himself in lawful means of earning a living." Tibrani, Baihaqqi.

It is a person's own interests that he saves up some money to ward off worry and despondency. It is a fact that most people are not able to undergo hardship. When in need of money, they resort to practices which are unlawful and adopt haraam measures to obtain money in order to satisfy their needs. It is therefore necessary to abstain from waste and at the same time save up money. According to a Hadith, even Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) would give his wives expenses at one time for the whole year. Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alahi Wasallam) advised the Ashab to retain some wealth as this is better for peace of mind. This was specifically stated by Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alahi Wasallam) to Hadhrat Ka'ab Ibn Malik (RA) who head expressed his desire to contribute all his wealth in the path of Allah Ta'ala.

In one Had ith, Hadhrat Ibn Masood narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alahi Wasallam) said: "I detest a man who is use less. He is neither engaged in any worldly activity not any Aakkirah activity." Ahmad, Baihaqqi

Indolence and inactivity are detestable attributes. A man who is not engaged in Deeni work should involve himself in some lawful worldly activity and earn his livelihood. He should not remain idle and waste away his life. On the other hand, those fully involved in Deeni activates, should repose their trust in Allah Ta'ala. He is the Provider. He will most certainly provide for them.

Workers of the Dean should not in the least be worried in regard to their Rizq.

Extravagance or waste is evil. The Shari'ah prohibits waste. Allah Ta'ala states in the Holy Qur'aan: "Do not waste. Verily, the wasters are the brothers of shaitaan."

Hadhrat Mugheerah (RA) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alahi Wasallam) said: "Allah Ta'ala detests that you destroy wealth (i.e. by means of fasting)." Bukhari, Muslim

Hadhrat Anas Abu Umaamah, Hadhrat Ibn Abbaas (RA) and All (RA) narrate that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alahi Wasallam) said: "Walk along the middle path."

This means the adoption of moderation. Moderation in spending is the instruction of Islam. Spend only when necessary. If people are moderate in expenditure and abstain from extravagance, they will never be dependent on others. They will not be forced to ask others, thereby bringing disgrace upon themselves. Over-spending more than one's income lead to debt which in turns brings disgrace, worry and frustration. People are financially ruined and along with such worldly ruin comes spiritual ruin as well.

Among the worst of calamities is debt, especially if one has no means of paying the debts. Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) has sounded dire warnings in regard to unpaid debt. Even martyrdom is no absolution for debt. A Shin heed (martyr) will be forgiven all his sins, but debt. Debt will be demanded even in the Aakkirah. In this regard, Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said: "I take oath in Whose possession is my life that the man who is in debt will not enter Jannah even if he is martyred (in the Path of Allah); then is resurrected arid again martyred; then again is resurrected and again martyred. He will not enter (Jannah) until his debt is paid." Targheeb, Nimbi, Tibrani, Hakim

However, there are exceptions. If the debt was incurred on account of a real need and one has the intention of paying and at the same time makes effort to pay, then the warning stated in the above Hadith will not apply to such debt. In such cases, even if the debt remained unpaid Allah Ta'ala will settle the rights of the creditors on behalf of the sincere debtor who was genuinely unable to pay.

So in sum, wealth acquired lawfully and spent in accordance with the Shari' is a namat (bounty) from Allah Ta 'ala. Wealth becomes an evil when it is acquired and expended in contravention of the Shariah. When wealth (like even wives and children) impedes one's spiritual development and interfere with one's Deeni life then indeed it will be an evil. In Surah Taghaubun, Allah Ta'ala describes even one's family as one's enemy. This applies when the family obstructs one in the Path of Allah Ta'ala. The same reasoning will apply to wealth. The Ayah mentioning that family can be one's enemy also states that wealth can be one's enemy. Thus when one's family and wealth cause one to forget the Aakkirah they will be one's enemies.

A Mumin should make use of the bounties of Allah Ta'ala like an obedient salve and not a rebellious traitor.

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The Issue of Inheritance

Compiled by:- Majlisul Ulema, South Africa

WASIYYAT

A bequest made by a person for part of his wealth to be contributed after his death to a person or institution is termed Wasiyyat.

The Shariah permits a Wasiyyat of one third or less of a man's estate. It is not permissible to make a Wasiyyat of more than one third. The amount in excess of a third of the value of the estate is not valid.

The following acts of a person come within the classification of Wasiyyat:

Contributions made during Maradhul Maut, e.g. gifts, waiving debt, charity.

Relating any disbursement or contribution of wealth to his inaut (death), e.g. a sum should be contributed to a Musjid, Madrasah, etc. or a certain amount should be given to a non-heir or a specific sum should be spent on feeding the poor, etc.

Payment of Fidyah (compensation) for Salat, Saum and Hajj which were not executed during the lifetime of the deceased.

Payment of Kaffarah (penalty) for violated oaths, fasts, etc.

MASAIL

When a man makes a Wasiyyat, it devolves as an incumbent duty on the heirs to execute the Wasiyyat. The obligation of fulfilling the mayyit's Wasiyyat is incumbent only up to one third the value of the total assets in the estate. It is not incumbent to pay the amount in excess of one third, e.g. the mayyit had made Wasiyyat for Rs 5,000 to be contributed to a Musjid. However, the total value of his estate is Rs 9,000. Thus only Rs 3,000 will be given to the Musjid.

If all the heirs voluntarily accede to execute the full Wasiyyat even in excess of one third, it will be permissible. However, the consent of minor heirs is not valid. Hence, nothing may be taken from their shares for payment towards the excess.

The 'third' in this context refers to one third of the value of the estate's assets after payment of funeral expenses and debts.

The consent of an adult heir who is absent cannot be assumed. Hence, nothing may be taken from the absent heir's share for the execution of the excess Wasiyyat.

When requesting the consent of an absent heir, it is essential to furnish full details of the Wasiyyat and the amount. His consent without him having been informed of the details of the Wasiyyat is not valid.

Only the consent which heirs give after the death of their Murith is valid. If during the lifetime of the mayyit the heirs had consented to a Wasiyyat more than a third, but withdrew such consent after the death of the murith, then the initial consent will be invalid.

When a person has neither heirs nor creditors and he makes a Wasiyyat for all his wealth to be contributed as he directs, then such a Wasiyyat will be valid.

The Wasiyyat will be valid only if the Musi (the one who makes the bequest) is sane and an adult.

The Wasiyyat will be discharged only if there are assets after payment of funeral expenses and debts.

The Wasiyyat will remain valid even if the beneficiary of the Wasiyyat dies before he accepts the benefit of the Wasiyyat. The Wasiyyat amount will be paid to the heirs of the beneficiary. The essential condition is that the beneficiary should be alive at the time the Wasiyyat is made in his favour. Thus, if a Wasiyyat is made in favour of a deceased person, the amount will not be paid to the heirs of the deceased in whose favour the Wasiyyat was made since such a Wasiyyat is not valid.

The subject of Wasiyyat should be an object or a right which can be owned, e.g. a fixed property, a vehicle, garments or the right to live in a house for a specific time, e.g. 5 years. If a right (i.e. a right which is valid in the Shariah) is bequeathed, the asset (e.g. house) will remain the property of the heirs while the beneficiary of the Wasiyyat will enjoy the right of occupying the house for whatever time specified in the Wasiyyat.

A Wasiyyat in favour of an heir is not valid. However, if all the adult heirs uphold the Wasiyyat it will be valid. But, nothing will be taken from the shares of minor heirs to fulfil the Wasiyyat in excess of one third which the adult heirs have accepted to uphold.

A Wasiyyat is not valid for such a person who happens to be an heir on the death of the murith. Sometimes a person becomes an heir in the absence of a closer heir, e.g. a grandson (son's son). If a man is survived by a grandson and no sons of his own, the grandson will become an heir. But, if a son is living, the grandson will not inherit. Thus, if at the time of the Murith's death the person is not an heir, the Wasiyyat in his favour will be valid. Another example is a brother who is not an heir if tne mayyit is survived by either his father or sons. A Wasiyyat in favour of a brother will, therefore, be valid. However, if the mayyit has no father, sons or grandsons (i.e. son's son), then the brother will be a heir, hence a Wasiyyat for him will not be valid.

A Wasiyyat for a non-Muslim is valid although there are no ties of inheritance between Muslims and non-Muslims.

The beneficiary of the Wasiyyat is termed Musa Lahu. Both the acceptance and rejection of a Wasiyyat during the lifetime of the Musi (the one who makes the Wasiyyat) are not valid. The Musa Lahu's acceptance or rejection is valid only after the death of the Musi.

HUJUB (Deprivation)

Heirs are sometimes deprived of inheritance, not because of any defect or impediment in themselves, but on account of the presence of others who may be heirs inheriting or non-inheriting heirs. This deprivation as the result of the presence of others is termed Hujub.

There are two types of Hujub - Hujub Nuqsan and Hujub Hirman.

Hujub Nuqsan

In this type, the heirs are partially deprived. On account of the presence of certain relatives, the shares of heirs decrease. The following are the heirs who suffer Hujub Nuqsan.

Mother: The mother's share is reduced from one third to one sixth if the mayyit is survived by also sons, daughters, or grandchildren. Grandchildren in this context refers to son's children.

The mother's share is likewise reduced to one sixth if there happens to be more than one brother or sister of the mayyit, even if in certain circumstances the brothers and sisters do not inherit.

The mother's share is also reduced if the mayyit is survived by his father and wife or by her father and husband. In this case there are no children. Instead of obtaining one third of the estate, she will receive one third of the balance remaining after subtracting the husband's/wife's share. This will be further explained, Insha'Allah.

Husband: In the presence of the wife's children or grandchildren (i.e. son's children), the husband's share decreases from one half to one quarter.

Wife: In the presence of the husband's children or grandchildren (i.e. son's children), the wife's share decreases from one quarter to one eighth.

Grand-daughter (Son's Daughter): If the mayyit has one daughter and one grand-daughter, the latter's share decreases from one half to one sixth because of the presence of the daughter.

Al-lati Sister: In the presence of a true sister, an Al-lati sister's share decreases from one half to one sixth.

Types of relationship between brothers and sisters

There are three types of brothers and sisters. These are known as Haqeeqi, Al-lati and Akhyafi. Haqeeqi are true or full brothers and sisters, i.e. children of the same mother and father. Al-lati are children of one father and different mothers. Akhyafi are children of one mother and different fathers. Such brothers and sisters are termed Akhyafi.

Hujub Hirman

Hujub Hirman is the total deprivation of an heir from inheritance. The following persons suffer Hujub Hirman:

Akhyafi brothers and sisters: These are totally deprived if the mayyit leaves behind sons or daughters or grandchildren (son's children) or father or paternal grandfather.

Grandchildren (sons children): These are deprived in the presence of a son.

Great grandchildren (sons-sons children): These are deprived in the presence of a grandson.

Granddaughter (sons daughter): The granddaughter is deprived if the mayyit leaves behind two daughters.

Parental and maternal grandmothers: All of these are deprived in the presence of the mayyit's mother.

Parental grandmother: She is deprived in the presence of the mayyit's father.

Brothers and sisters: All of these, be they Haqeeqi, Al-lati or Akhyafi, are deprived if the mayyit is survived by children or grandchildren (son's children) or a father or grandfather.

Al-lati sister: She is deprived if the mayyit leaves two Haqeeqi sisters or one Haqeeqi brother on condition she is not an Asbah (this will be explained in the section dealing with Al-lati sisters, Insha'Allah).

Parental grandfather: He is deprived in the presence of the mayyit's father.

Brothers son: They are deprived in the presence of the mayyit's father or brother or son or grandson (son's son).

Paternal uncle: He is deprived in the presence of the mayyit's father or grandfather or great grandfather or son or grandson or brother or brother's son.

The following relatives are not heirs. They will inherit only if a Wasiyyat is made for them.

1. There are no ties of inheritance between a stepmother/stepfather and her/his stepchildren.

Examples:

a. A woman's children from a previous marriage will not inherit in the estate of her other husband (i.e. the children's stepfather). Similarly, this stepfather will not inherit in the estates of his stepchildren.

b. A man's children from one wife will not inherit in the estate of their father's other wives (i.e. their stepmothers). Similarly, their stepmothers will not inherit in their estates.

c. The relatives of the husband do not inherit in the estate of his wife nor do the relatives of the wife inherit in the estate of her husband.

d. Zina (fornication/adultery) does not create ties of inheritance. Thus, an illegitimate child will not inherit in the estate of its biological father nor will such a man inherit in the estates of his illegitimate offspring. Such children will, however, inherit in their mother's estates and their mother will
inherit in their estates. They will also inherit from one another. The will also inherit in the estates of their mother's other children who are legitimate.

Adoption

Adoption does not bring about any of the ties and effects created by blood-relationship. Adopted children do not inherit in the estates of their foster parents nor do these parents inherit in the estates of their adopted children Ho ever, a Wasiyyat may be made for adopted children and foster parents.

It should be remembered that the rules of Purdah/Hijab apply fully to adopted children.

An estranged wife

A wife who is estranged from her husband will inherit in his estate as long as she remains in his nikah regardless of whose fault the cause of the estrangement is. Whether she was expelled from the marital home by the husband or whether she wilfully abandoned the home, she will remain an heir in her husband's estate as long as she remains in his nikah even if the separation endured for a lifetime.

The children which an estranged wife begets by way of adultery will be considered to be the legitimate children of her husband. As such,, they will inherit in his estate and he in their estates.

Since the mother of such ill-conceived offspring is in the nikah of her husband, these children are regarded as legitimate by the Shariah even if the woman has not been living with her husband for years and her illicit affairs with other men are common knowledge.

The husband should understand that it is not proper to refuse talaq to a woman on account of his desire to spite and punish her. In the end this dishonourable attitude rebounds on him. He will share the blame for her misconduct. Furthermore children which she begets by way of adultery will bear his name. They have equal rights with his true children. Therefore, if there is no hope of reconciliation the man should honourably set the woman free by means of talaq. As Allah Ta'ala commands in the Qur'an Majeed:

"Maintain (her) beautifully or set (her) free with kindness."

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Strength

Imam Ghazali (RA)

Faith-A Revolutionary Strength

A firm and strong faith is such a never-drying spring, from which flow the strength for the desired activities, coveted courage and forbearance to tolerate adversities and to face dangers. It creates in man such a restless feeling and deep attachment to his ideal that if he is unable to achieve his coveted objective, he does not hesitate to partake of the drink of death.

When faith finds a place in a man's heart and takes deep roots in it, it brings out these results only. It fills a man's heart and mind with such power and strength that cover and influence all his dealings. Accordingly, when he opens his mouth, he talks with confidence and certainty. When he undertakes a work, he attends to it with full interest and sincerity. When he starts on a journey, his destination is before his eyes. If he enjoys the wealth of the correct end firm thinking, the world of the heart too is inhabited by the enthusiasm and restless courage. Hesitation and ambivalence do not find a place in his heart, and high-velocity winds do not move him from his path or make him deviate from his objective. It will not be surprising if he says to every one, in the words of an Urdu poet:

"Come here O tyrant! we will try our art,

"You try your arrow, and I will try my liver (courage)."

And he may challenge the people around him thus:

"You work in your manner, I too am acting. Soon you will know who will get disgraceful punishment, and who will get the everlasting punishment" (Zumar: 39-40)

This challenging accent, this independent spirit in action and deeds, this self-confidence in understanding truth and tradition are the qualities which make him a distinguished personality in life. He deals with the people in the light of the facts seen and experienced by him. If he finds the people on a policy which is right f and truthful, he extends his hand for co-operation; and if he finds them committing errors, he withdraws himself, ,and leaves his conscience alive and wakeful.

`Allah's Messenger has said:

"Everyone of you should desist from walking with every traveler. He should not say that he is with the people, and that if people would do good deed, he would also do the good deeds; and that if they would do wicked deeds then he would co-operate with them. You should prepare yourself to co-operate with them if they do righteous deeds and to keep away if they do wicked deeds." (Tirmizi)

But one who is weak, the current customs and habits make one their slave. On such a man's conduct rule the things which are current in the society. If these customs and practices are wrong and destructive, then he carries the burden of the troubles of this world as well as of the next.

Among the people, various kinds of innovations have become customary on the occasions of celebrations and mourning. They pay more attention to performing these innovative acts than on the realities of the religion.

But a straight-going Momin does not take any interest in these things, for which there is no supportive proof in religion. He is confronted with opposition and experiences difficulties in opposing the popular and customary rituals, but it is obvious that he need not care for any condemnation from anybody in the affairs of Allah. He has to achieve his ideal. No weapon of criticism and fault-finding and no injuries from tongue can obstruct his way.

Falsehood which sometimes is successful is subsequently ruled by powerful individuals. They then destroy its position and rank. This also cannot stay for a long time with the help and support of its allies, because many enemies who are today with it, having been deceived by falsehood, tomorrow they would become the supporters of the other enemies; they approve of their aims and objects after knowing their character and pledge their support after severe hostility and spite.

Ibn Abbas has narrated that Allah's Messenger has said:

"He who has displeased Allah for seeking the pleasure of the people, Allah is displeased with him and those people are also displeased for pleasing whom he had earned Allah's displeasure. And he who pleases Allah by displeasing the people, Allah is also pleased with him and also those people whom he had displeased for pleasing Allah, so much so that He made him splendid and his speech and acts in the eyes of others beautiful." (Tibrani)

A Muslim should stick to what he believes to be true, and he should ignore all the insults, fun-making, and difficulties with which he is confronted. He should adopt for himself such a policy through following which he should always try to get rewards (sawab) from Allah. If those, who believe in superstitions and absurd things, make fun of the faithful people and laugh at them, then it is necessary for a Momin to be strong and to stand his ground with firmness.

"When they see you, (0 Muhammed !) they treat you only as a jest (saying): Is this he whom Allah sends as a messenger? He would have led us far away from our gods if we had not been staunch to them. They will know, when they behold the doom, who is more astray as to the road." (Furqan : 42-43)

No doubt, a Muslim must feel in his personality the strength of belief and in his heart the pressure and awe of faith. If the things around him do not influence him, then he is like a rock which is not moved by the lashing of the waves of the sea. What harm these men can inflict on a man who feels in his heart the strength of faith and belief, and on account of his relation with his Lord and steadfastness in his religion feels in himself a new determination and a fresh courage ? If all these rush and attack, they will not be able to harm him a bit.

Ibn Abbas says that he was sitting on a mount behind the Prophet. The Prophet said:

"O child! remember Allah, He will take care of you. Remember Allah, you will find Him everywhere. Recognize Allah's rights in your prosperity, He will recognize you in your adversity. If you want to ask anything, ask from Allah. If you need help, seek help from Allah, for if all the men together decide to help, they will not be able to do so, if Allah has not written that for you and they have no control over it. And if all of them decide to inflict some harm on you which Allah has not meant for you, they cannot harm you a bit. The ink of the pen has been dried and the sheets have been collected."

The fact is that in a Muslim the basis of strength and power is the belief in the oneness of Allah. Similarly other virtues prevent him from accepting any disgrace and insult in this world, because a Muslim is most honored and of high rank on account of his relationship with the heavens. In his own sphere of faith he has the power to become a whole community. These are Allah's words, speaking for him:

"Say: 'Shall I choose for a protecting friend other than Allah, the Originator of the heavens and the earth, who feeds and is never fed?' Say: 'I am ordered to be the first to surrender (to Him). And be not you (0 Muhammed !) of the idolaters'.'" (An'am: 14).

Determination and Trust-the best Manifestation of Strength

Islam has declared achievement of strength and power essential. Its one characteristic and manifestation is that you make a firm determination and a strong resolve to achieve, with the help of your nearest available means and resources, your objective. Try your utmost in achieving your goal. You should leave no stone unturned and no room for chance, and thereafter leave the outcome in the hands of destiny. There are many individuals who take Allah's shelter in order to cover their objectionable defects reprehensible negligence, inability and laziness, and grumble against luck. Islam has disapproved of this tendency.

Auf bin Malik says that Allah's Messenger once gave a decision in a dispute of two people. When the man against whom the Prophet's decision was given was returning, said:

"For me Allah is sufficient, and He is the best support." The Prophet said: "Allah sends curses on helplessness and weakness. You should give proof of your wisdom. When you are overpowered in any matter say: 'For me Allah is sufficient, and He is the best support'."

(Abu Daud)

It is the duty of everybody that he should make full efforts and try to the best of his ability to overcome his difficulty, till the time he achieves his objective. If he overpowers his difficulties then he has fulfilled his responsibility.

However, if after making all the efforts he fails, then at such a time the support of Allah is the best shelter for him, which would help him to overcome the sense of defeatism and frustration. In both the states he is strong and powerful. First by making efforts and working, and in the second case by relying on God he receives strength.

Islam does not like that in your affairs you should be a prey to vagueness and hesitation, You should not be undecided in the matter of selecting the advantageous alternative. Your head should not be filled up with doubts and misgivings, resulting in an atmosphere of indetermination and indecision, making it difficult for you to come to a decision. It does not like that due to your weakness you may not be able to strongly hold the advantageous things in your firm grip, and they should slip through your fingers and may be wasted. This restlessness and indecision does not become a Muslim.

Allah's Prophet has said:

" A strong Momin is better than a weak Momin and is more liked by Allah, and there is good ill each one. Desire profitable things and seek Allah's help and be humble. If you are harmed then do not say that had you done in this way the result would have been different, but say Allah is Controller, whatever He likes He may decide, because the botheration of ifs and buts opens the door of the devil's workshop." (Muslim)

What is the work of Satan? To remind of the troubles and the difficulties of the past, which would create a sense of heart-breaking disappointment and de-privation. Man thinks about the prospects of his present and future. As regards shedding tears on the defeats of the past, to bring back the memory of the past sadness, to think of old enmities and to be entangled in the net of ifs and buts, are inclinations which do not suit the conduct of a Muslim. Quran has listed them with sorrow and frustration in those manifestations which are generated in the hearts of the infidels:

"O you who believe ! Be not as those who disbelieved and said of their brethren who went abroad in the land or were fighting in the field: If they had been (here) with us they would not have died or been killed; that Allah may make it anguish in their hearts. Allah gives life and causes death and Allah is Observer of what you do." (Ale Imran.. 156)

One hadith has it: "One who wants to be strong among men, should rely on Allah."

Trust in Allah which makes a man powerful is a kind of confidence in Allah, which saves a man from destruction at a time when he is surrounded on all sides by harrowing difficulties, and when he is unable to get help from anyone else, nor is there any hope of getting it from elsewhere.

Accordingly he becomes a mountain of strength at the time of confrontation with the enemy. If the reliance is on Allah, then in spite of the shortage of weapons and war equipment and insufficient number of supporters, he feels that he has a strong support. From this trust in Allah he receives encouragement and support to be steadfast. He sticks to his job till in the dark and frightening atmosphere the glad tidings of victory are heard by him. The holy Quran says that trust is

such an eternal food for war that with its help prophets and their followers have bravely and successfully faced the tyrants of their time:

"How should we not put our trust in Allah when He has shown US our ways? We surely will endure that hurt you do us. In Allah let the trusting put their trust" (Ibrahim: 12)

The faithful and their supporters stand their ground, sticking to their mandate. They have expectations of well-being in the future. They have full confidence that their present weakness will be converted into a powerful victorious force, but the wicked and evil rulers and their disciples term this determination and trust of the faithful as their pride and madness:

"When the hypocrites and those in whose hearts is a disease said: 'Their religion has deluded these. Whosoever puts his trust in Allah (will find that) surely, Allah is Mighty, Wise." (AI-Anfal: 49)

The correct and true trust is that which accompanies profitable striving and firm determination. From these things trust became deprived when the face of Islam was disfigured and religion was made a plaything For becoming strong and powerful a Muslim should take care that he keeps away from the life of wickedness and evil, loves the policy of cleanness and steadfastness. A man who is ill mannered, and bereft of decency and consideration, cannot attain strength. He should put on the hide of the beasts and walk in the wake of the kings as a servant.

Allah informed the nation of Hud, that was tyrant and rebellious against Allah, the correct and profitable causes of strength:

"Ask forgiveness of your Lord, then turn to Him repentant; He will cause the sky to rain abundance on you and will add to you strength to your strength. Turn not away, guilty." (Hud: 52)

The kind Prophet wanted to present the worship to the people in a beautiful form and to persuade them to perform it. When a man performs a righteous deed, he opposes the Satan and tries to rise towards the angels. At that time how great becomes his sanctity and magnificence! To focus attention on this the Prophet has explained it by giving an example:

"When Allah created the earth, it tilted and was unsteady. Accordingly Allah put the stakes, (nails) of mountains in it, and it became steady, and stood in one position. The angels were amazed by the strength of the mountains. They asked the Creator: 'Our Lord! Have you created anything harder than the mountains ?' He replied: 'Yes, Iron is harder than this.' The angels again asked: "Is anything harder than iron ?' He said: 'Yes, Fire has more power,' They asked: 'Is there any- thing more powerful created by you than fire ? He said: 'Yes. Water is more powerful than this.' The angels asked: 'Does anything among your created things exist more powerful than water ? He said: 'Yes, air has more power than this.' They asked:: 'Have you created anything more powerful than air ?' He said: 'Yes. Adam's son is more powerful, provided he gives charity from his right hand without letting his left hand know it." (Tirmizi)

Man is the strangest creature of the universe. The day his personality attains greatness and excellence of moral character he becomes the hunter of the universe. He brings under his control the hardest and the most powerful things of the universe, and derives benefit from it. But the day when his personality declines, he earns the curses of the inhabitants of the heavens and the earth, and the particles of dust carry him with them in their flight.

In the hadith quoted above the value and importance of such a virtuous man has been mentioned who tries to forge ahead in the field of righteousness and who tries to touch the heights of excellence and decency.

One factor of strength is that a Muslim should be in the habit of stating the truth unhesitatingly. He should meet people with an open heart, and on the basis of righteous values and principles. He should not compromise in the matter of truth, so that his decency and his companions' character may not be tarnished.

He should consider his strength a direct outcome of his belief which he represents and for which he is alive. He should never waver in unhesitatingly and courageously proving a reality.

It is reported that when the Prophet's son Ibrahim died, the sun went into an eclipse. The people said that the eclipse was due to the death of Ibrahim. Allah's Messenger gave a sermon to the people, and said:

"The eclipse of the sun and the moon are not on account of the death or life of some person, but they both are the signs of Allah, which He shows to His slaves. So when you see the eclipse of the sun or the moon, you run for offering salat." (Bukhari)

A man who breathes in the atmosphere of realities, does not compromise with falsehood and absurdities. He is always indifferent to such things, and his uncompromising words point to the vast treasure of greatness and nobility, whose owner does not derive any benefit from deception and his character, stands on the rock of excellent moral character.

The performance of the duty of ordering the righteous thing and preventing the commitment of the forbidden thing comes from the personal excellence, because it results from the courageous talk of the sincere people who want to earn Allah's reward by ending their own egoist leanings.

In our other books we have explained the social and political objectives which is related to the performance of the righteous and the forbidding of the forbidden. (Author's Arabic book)

Here what we want to emphasize is that a Muslim must necessarily straight away criticize the general evils, should be courageous in attacking them, neither the fear of a big man nor the consideration for a relative should prevent him from doing the right thing, and in the path of Allah no condemnation from any source should block his away.

Islam has disliked that a man should feel weak in the presence of wicked and evil persons, and should address them in a respectable way. Allah's Messenger has said: "When a man addresses a hypocrite as 'Ya Sayyedi' (My master), he makes Allah very wrathful."

This is a double crime that a man should not respect the Allah's commands about forbidden things, and then he should only listen to those who think him respectable and should not care for those who consider him mean and humble:

"He whom Allah scorns, there is none to give him honor. Surely, Allah does what He

Islam has declared backbiting as haram, so that man's life may continue and the factors of strength may remain in it, for the man who states the defects of a person in his absence and derives satisfaction from it, is undoubtedly very mean and low.

But the man who has the strength to respond to the motivation and call of truth, he stops those whom he likes, in whatever manner and words he thinks proper he criticizes them. He does not keep anything hidden in his heart for condemning anybody behind the scene.

However it does not mean that we may address anybody whom we like in an insulting way. If we find any defects in persons, we may fix up certain] norms about dealing with them.

If his defect is limited to his own person or if it is not in consonance with his position, then it would be foolish to castigate him in his presence or in his absence.

And if his steps are slipping towards a sin, and he does not seem to be in a mood to give it up like a horse who flounders and falls on his face then to defame such a person among the people is meanness.

However, if he is a blatant sinner, and he openly breaks the rights of Allah and usurps the rights of his fellow men, then it is necessary that he should be opposed with the words of truth and without caring for anybody he should be properly warned.

Since this dialogue has to be straight, it is necessary that curses and abuses should be avoided and physical hurt should be averted. The purpose should be to change the bad habit and to reform the individual and the society. It does not mean that his mention before his enemies should be in demeaning words, so that you may get closer to their hearts, or may derive some benefits or may claim yourself to be innocent of those sins. Allah's Messenger has said:

"He who has eaten food in exchange for the honor of a Muslim, Allah will feed him fire of hell in compensation on the Doomsday; and he who put on clothes in exchange for dishonoring a Muslim, Allah will clothe him in compensation with the cloth of hell fire; and if he who earned respect and fame by playing with the chastity of a Muslim, Allah will make him taste fully for this on the Doomsday." (Abu Daud)

Backbiting is the policy of the weak persons, and "only those people try to indulge in backbiting who are unable to strive for themselves."

Sycophants are Disliked by Islam

Islam dislikes those persons who become merely a supplement of other people, those persons who live on the charity of others, those who want to live like foxes that is content with eating the remnants of a Lion's prey.

A Muslim is much above this kind of living, to maintain himself in this superficial way on the support of others. It is necessary that he should shun all places or situations of insults and ignominy, and should go to the end of the world in search of a life of honor and dignity.

Allah's Messenger has talked of the people of the Paradise and their companions, and the people of the hell and their companions. Accordingly he has mentioned in the first group the good qualities and advantages of strength, decency and morality, while in the other group he has mentioned the infamy, ignominy, helplessness and immoral enjoyments.

"People of paradise will be of three kinds. First that powerful man who was just and balanced in his dealings, who popularized the practice of charity and virtue, and adopted the attitude of softness and Tightness. Second will be that person who was kind, who was soft hearted for every relative and every Muslim. Third will be that person who having a wife and children, yet was able to save himself from the forbidden things. In the people of the hell will be that dishonest person whose greed will not be discernible, but he would be indulging in misappropriation, that man who may deceive you every morning and evening in connection with your property and your family. And the Prophet talked about miserliness, falsehood, speaker of vulgarity and ill-mannered person, and said:

"Allah has inspired me to say that you should be humble and none should feel proud, nor should anyone oppress others." (Muslim)

Although many occasions come when a Muslim is caught in dilemmas and sometimes he feels mean in his own eyes, if he is bound by these melancholic handcuffs. Accordingly the fear of individual infamy and social ignominy sometimes compel a man to be inactive.

He thinks on wrong lines and considers these misfortunes as bad omen. His productivity in the field of life reduces considerably. But it is the responsibility of a Muslim that he should break all these chains of sorrow and adversities and should strive fully to extricate himself from these crippling curbs.

The last Prophet of Allah used to pray for shelter under his Lord from all these adversities:

"O Allah! I seek shelter through you from sorrow and hardship. I seek shelter from humility and laziness, and through you seek shelter from cowardice and miserliness, from the defeat of the religion and from the cruelty and tyranny of the oppressors." (Abu Daud)

Patience and hope are the weapons of the present and the future. In their company man is able to bear the severest of the hardships and is not disgraced, and all sides of his life become more safe from evils, and he rises above the mischief and trials, because he is a Momin a faithful slave who begs and supplicates in humbles before Allah only.

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Islamic Finance

Justice Mawlana Taqi Usmani (DB)

Sub-Lease

If the leased asset is used differently by different users, the lessee cannot sub-lease the leased asset except with the express permission of the lessor. If the lessor permits the lessee for subleasing, he may sub-lease it. If the rent claimed from the sub-lessee is equal to or less than the rent payable to the owner / original lessor, all the recognized schools of Islamic jurisprudence are unanimous on the permissibility of the sub lease. However, the opinions are different in case the rent charged from the sub-lessee is higher than the rent payable to the owner. Imam al-Shafii and some other scholars allow it and hold that the sub lessor may enjoy the surplus received from the sub-lessee. This is the preferred view in the Hanbali school as well. On the other hand. Imam Abu Hanifah is of the view that the surplus received from the sub-lessee in this case is not permissible for the sub-lessor to keep and he will have to give that surplus in charity. However, if the sub-lessor has developed the leased property by adding something to it or has rented it in a currency different from the currency in which he himself pays rent to the owner/the original lessor, he can claim a higher rent from his sub-lessee and can enjoy the surplus.

Although the view of Imam Abu Hanifah is more precautions which should be acted upon to the best possible extent, in cases of need the view of Shafii and Hanbali schools may be followed because there is no express prohibition in the Holy Quran or in the Sunnah against the surplus claimed from the lessee. Ibn Qudamah has argued for the permissibility of surplus on forceful grounds.

Assigning of the Lease

The lessor can sell the leased property to a third party whereby the relation of lessor and lessee shall be established between the new owner and the lessee. However, the assigning of the lease itself (without assigning the ownership in the leased asset) for a monetary consideration is not permissible.

The difference between the two situations is that in the latter case the ownership of the asset is not transferred to the assignee, but he becomes entitled to receive the rent of the asset only. This kind of assignment is allowed in Shariah only where no monetary consideration is charged from the assignee for this assignment. for example, a lessor can assign his right to claim rent from the lessee to his son, or to his friend in the form of a gift. Similarly, he can assign this right to any one of his creditors to set off his debt out of the rentals received by him. But if the lessor wants to sell this right for a fixed price, it is not permissible, because in this case the money (the amount of rentals) is sold for money which is a transaction subject to the principle of equality. Otherwise it will be tantamount to a riba transaction, hence prohibited.

Securitization of Ijarah

The arrangement of Ijarah has a good potential of securitization which may help create a secondary market for the financiers on the basis of Ijarah. Since the lessor in Ijarah owns the leased assets, he can sell the asset, in whole or in part, to a third party who may purchase it and may replace the seller in the rights and obligations of the lessor with regard to the purchased part of the asset.

Therefore, if the lessor, after entering into Ijarah, wishes to recover his cost of purchase of the asset with a profit thereon, he can sell the leased asset wholly or partly either to one party or to a number of individuals. In the latter case, the purchase of a proportion of the asset by each individual may be evidenced by a certificate which may be called 'Ijarah certificate'. This certificate will represent the holder's proportionate ownership in the leased asset and he will assume the rights and obligations of the owner/lessor to that extent. Since the asset is already leased to the lessee, lease will continue with the new owners, each one of the holders of this certificate will have the right to enjoy a part of the rent according to his proportion of ownership in the asset. Similarly he will also assume the obligations of the lessor to the extent of his ownership. Therefore, in the case of total destruction of the asset, he will suffer the loss to the extent of his ownership. These certificates, being an evidence of proportionate ownership in a tangible asset, can be negotiated and traded in freely in the market and can serve as an instrument easily convertible into cash. Thus they may help in solving the problems of liquidity management faced by the Islamic banks and financial institutions.

It should be remembered, however, that the certificate must represent ownership of an undivided part of the asset with all its rights and obligations. Misunderstanding this basic concept, some quarters tried to issue Ijarah certificates representing the holder's right to claim certain amount of the rental only without assigning to him any kind of ownership in the asset. It means that the holder of such a certificate has no relation with the leased asset at all. His only right is to share the rentals received from the lessee. This type of securitization is not allowed in Shariah. As explained earlier in this chapter, the rent after being due is a debt payable by the lessee. The debt or any security representing debt only is not a negotiable instrument in Shariah, because trading in such an instrument amounts to trade in money or in monetary obligation which is not allowed, except on the basis of equality, and if the equality of value is observed while trading in such instruments, the very purpose of securitization is defeated. Therefore, this type of Ijarah certificates cannot serve the purpose of creating a secondary market. It is, therefore, necessary that the Ijarah certificates are designed to represent real ownership of the leased assets, and not only a right to receive rent.

Head-Lease

Another concept developed in the modern leasing business is that of 'head-leasing.' In this arrangement a lessee sub-leases the property to a number of sub-lessees. Then, he invites others to participate in his business by making them share the rentals received by his sub-lessees. For making them participate in receiving rentals, he charges a specified amount from them. This arrangement is not in accordance with the principles of Shariah. The reason is obvious. The lessee does not own the property. He is entitled to benefit from its usufruct only. That usufruct he has passed on to his sub-lessees by contracting a sub-lease with them. Now he does not own anything, neither the corpus of the property, nor its usufruct. What he has is the right to receive rent only. Therefore, he assigns a part of this right to other persons. It is already explained in detail that this right cannot be traded in, because it amounts to selling a receivable debt at a discount which is one of the forms of riba prohibited by the Holy Quran and Sunnah. Therefore, this concept is not acceptable.

These are some basic features of the 'financial lease' which are not in conformity with the dictates of Shariah. While using the lease as an Islamic mode of finance, these shortcomings must be avoided.

The list of the possible shortcomings in the lease agreement is not restricted to what has been mentioned above, but only the basic errors found in different agreements have been pointed out, and the basic principles of Islamic leasing have been summarized. An Islamic lease agreement must conform to all of them.

Salam & Istisna

1) Introduction

2) Meaning of Salam

3) Conditions of Salam

4) Salam as a mode of Financing

5) Some Rules of Parallel Salam

6) Istisna

7) Difference between Istisna and Salam

8) Difference between Istisna and Ijarah

9) Time of Delivery

10) Istisna as a mode of financing Islamic Finance

Introduction

It is one of the basic conditions for the validity of a sale in Shariah that the commodity (intended to be sold) must be in the physical or constructive possession of the seller. This condition has three ingredients:

Firstly, the commodity must be existing; therefore, a commodity which does not exist at the time of sale cannot be sold.

Secondly, the seller should have acquired the ownership of that commodity. Therefore, if the commodity is existing, but the seller does not own it, he cannot sell it to anybody.

Thirdly, mere ownership is not enough. It should have come in to the possession of the seller, either physically or constructively. If the seller owns a commodity, but he has not taken its delivery himself or through an agent, he cannot sell it.

There are only two exceptions to this general principle in Shariah. One is Salam and the other is Istisna. Both are sales of a special nature, and in the present chapter the concept of these two kinds of sale and the extent to which they can be used for the purpose of financing will be explained.

Meaning of Salam

Salam is a sale whereby the seller undertakes to supply some specific goods to the buyer at a future date in exchange of an advanced price fully paid at spot.

Here the price is cash, but the supply of the purchased goods is deferred. The buyer is called "rabb-us-salam", the seller is "muslam ilaih", the cash price is "ras-ul-mal" and the purchased commodity is termed as "muslam fih", but for the purpose of simplicity, I shall use the English synonyms of these terms.

Salam was allowed by the Holy Prophet subject to certain conditions. The basic purpose of this sale was to meet the needs of the small farmers who needed money to grow their crops and to feed their family upto the time of harvest. After the prohibition of riba they could not take usurious loans. Therefore, it was allowed for them to sell the agricultural products in advance.

Similarly, the traders of Arabia used to export goods to other places and to import some other goods to their homeland. They needed money to undertake this type of business. They could not borrow from the usurers after the prohibition of riba. It was, therefore, allowed for them that they sell the goods in advance. After receiving their cash price, they could easily undertake the aforesaid business.

Salam was beneficial to the seller, because he received the price in advance, and it was beneficial to the buyer also, because normally, the price in salam used to be lower than the price in spot sales. The permissibility of salam was an exception to the general rule that prohibits the forward sales, and therefore, it was subjected to some strict conditions. These conditions are summarized below:

Conditions of Salam

1. First of all, it is necessary for the validity of Salam that the buyer pays the price in full to the seller at the time of effecting the sale. It is necessary because in the absence of full payment by the buyer, it will be tantamount to sale of a debt against a debt, which is expressly prohibited by the Holy Prophet Moreover, the basic wisdom behind the permissibility of salam is to fulfill the instant needs of the seller. If the price is not paid to him in full, the basic purpose of the transaction will be defeated. Therefore, all the Muslim jurists are unanimous on the point that full payment of the price is necessary in Salam. However, Imam Malik is of the view that the seller may give a concession of two or three days to the buyers, but this concession should not form part of the agreement.

2. Salam can be effected in those commodities only the quality and quantity of which can be specified exactly. The things whose quality or quantity is not determined by specification cannot be sold through the contract of salam. For example, precious stones cannot be sold on the basis of salam, because every piece of precious stones is normally different from the other either in its quality or in its size or weight and their exact specification is not generally possible.

3. Salam cannot be effected on a particular commodity or on a product of a particular field or farm. For example, if the seller undertakes to supply the wheat of a particular field, or the fruit of a particular tree, the salam will not be valid, because there is a possibility that the crop of that particular field or the fruit of that tree is destroyed before delivery, and, given such possibility, the delivery remains uncertain. The same rule is applicable to every commodity the supply of which is not certain.

4. It is necessary that the quality of the commodity (intended to be purchased through salam) is fully specified leaving no ambiguity which may lead to a dispute. All the possible details in this respect must be expressly mentioned.

5. It is also necessary that the quantity of the commodity is agreed upon in unequivocal terms. If the commodity is quantified in weights according to the usage of its traders, its weight must be determined, and if it is quantified through measures, its exact measure should be known. What is normally weighed cannot be quantified in measures and vice versa.

6. The exact date and place of delivery must be specified in the contract.

7. Salam cannot be effected in respect of things which must be delivered at spot. For example, if gold is purchased in exchange of silver, it is necessary, according to Shariah, that the delivery of both be simultaneous. Here, salam cannot work. Similarly, if wheat is bartered for barley, the simultaneous delivery of both is necessary for the validity of sale. Therefore the contract of salam in this case is not allowed. All the Muslim jurists are unanimous on the principle that salam will not be valid unless all these conditions are fully observed, because they are based on the express ahadith of the Holy Prophet The most famous hadith in this context is the one in which the Holy Prophet has said:

"Whoever wishes to enter into a contract of salam, he must effect the Salam according to the specified measure and the specified weight and the specified date of delivery".

However, there are certain other conditions which have been a point of difference between the different schools of the Islamic jurisprudence. Some of these conditions are discussed below:

(1) It is necessary, according to the Hanafi school, that the commodity (for which salam is effected) remains available in the market right from the day of contract upto the date of delivery. Therefore, if a commodity is not available in the market at the time of the contract, salam cannot be effected in respect of that commodity, even though it is expected that it will be available in the markets at the date of delivery.

However, the other three schools of Fiqh (i.e. Shafii, Maliki, and Hanbali) are of the view that the availability of the commodity at the time of the contract is not a condition for the validity of salam. What is necessary, according to them, is that it should be available at the time of delivery. This view can be adopted in the present circumstances.

(2) It is necessary, according to the Hanafi and Hanbali schools that the time of delivery is, at least, one month from the date of agreement. If the time of delivery is fixed earlier than one month, salam is not valid. Their argument is that salam has been allowed for the needs of small farmers and traders and therefore, they should be given enough opportunity to acquire the commodity. They may not be able to supply the commodity before one month. Moreover, the price in salam is normally lower than the price in spot sales. This concession in the price may be justified only when the commodities are delivered after a period which has a reasonable bearing on the prices. A period of less than one month does not normally affect the prices. Therefore, the minimum time of delivery should not be less than one month. Imam Malik supports the view that there should be a minimum period for the contract of salam. However, he is of the opinion that it should not be less than fifteen days, because the rates of the market may change within a fortnight. This view is, however, opposed by some other jurists, like Imam Shafii and some Hanafi jurists also. They say that the Holy Prophet has not specified a minimum period for the validity of salam. The only condition, according to the Hadith, is that the time of delivery must be clearly defined. Therefore, no minimum period can be prescribed. The parties may fix any date for delivery with mutual consent. This view seems to be preferable in the present circumstances, because the Holy Prophet has not prescribed a minimum period. The jurists have prescribed different periods which range between one day to one month. It is obvious that they have done so on the basis of expedience and keeping in view the interest of the poor sellers. But the expediency may differ from time to time and from place to place. Likewise, sometimes it is more in the interest of the seller to fix an earlier date. As far as the price is concerned, it is not a necessary ingredient of salam that the price is always lower than the market price on that day. The seller himself is the best judge of his interest, and if he accepts an earlier date of delivery with his free will and consent, there is no reason why he should be forbidden from doing so. Certain contemporary jurists have adopted this view being more suitable for the modern transactions.

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Polishing the Hearts

Imam Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah (RA)

Allaah - the Most High - said: "O you who believe! Remember Allaah and remember Him a lot." [33:4I].

"Those men and women who remember Allaah a lot." [33:35].

"So when you have finished the rights of your Pilgrimage, then remember Allaah as you remember your fore-father, or with more intense remembrance." [2:200].

These verses contain a command to remember Allaah intensely and abundantly, since the worshipper is in dire need of [remembering Allaah] and cannot do without it even for a twinkling of an eye. This is because every moment that a person does not spend in the dhikr (remembrance) of Allaah will not be of any benefit to him. Rather, the harm entailed in being neglectful of the dhikr of Allaah is far greater than any benefits that can be gained. One of the 'aarifeen (those who are knowledgeable about Allaah) said:"If a person were to spend such and such number of years engaged [in the dhikr of Allaah], then he turns away from it for just a moment, what he will lose is far greater than whatever he has already gained."

Al-Bayhaqee relates from 'Aaishah radiallaahu 'anhaa that the Prophet sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam said: "There is no time in which the son of Aadam does not remember AIIaah in it, except that it will be a source of regret for him on the Day of Judgement".

Mu'aadh ibn jabal radiallaahu 'anhu relates that the Prophet sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam said: "The people of Paradise will not have any regrets except for those moments in which they were not engaged in the dhikr (remembrance) of Allaah."

Mu'aadh ibn Jabal also relates that Allaah's Messenger sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam was asked: What action is the most beloved to Allaah? So he replied: "That you continue to keep your tongue moist with the dhikr of Allaah, until you die."

Polishing the heart

Abu Dardaa radiallaahu 'anhu said:"For everything there is a polish and the polish for the heart is the dhikr of Allaah".

Al-Bayhaqee relates from Ibn 'Umar radiallaahu 'anhu that AlIaah's Messenger sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam said: "For everything there is a polish, and the polish for the hearts is the dhikr (remembrance) of Allaah. There is nothing more potent in saving a person from the punishment of Allaah than the dhikr of Allaah." It was said: Not even Jihaad in the path of Allaah. So he replied: "Not even if you were to continue striking with your sword until it breaks."

There is no doubt that hearts becomes rusty just as copper and silver coins become rusty. The polish for [this rust] is the dhikr of AIlaah. This is because [dhikr] is like a polish [which polishes the heart] like a shiny mirror. When dhikr is left, the rust returns. But when dhikr resumes, then the heart is [again] polished. And hearts become rusty due to two things:-

(i) neglecting remembering Allaah, and

(ii) committing sins.

The polish for these two things is:-

(i) seeking Allaah's forgiveness and

(ii) dhikr.

Confusing truth with falsehood

Whoever neglects [remembering Allaah] most of the time, then his heart will become rusty in accordance with how neglectful the person is. And when this [filthy] rust accumulates on the heart, then it no longer recognises things as they really are. Thus, it views falsehood as if it is the truth, and truth as if it is falsehood. This is because this rust darkens and confuses the heart's perception, and so it is unable to truly recognise things for what they really are. So as the rust accumulates, the heart gets blackened, and as this happens the heart becomes stained with this filthy rust, and when this occurs it corrupts the heart's perception and recognition of things. The heart [then] does not accept the truth nor does it reject falsehood, and this is the greatest calamity that can strike the heart. Being neglectful [of dhikr] and following of whims and desires is a direct consequence of such a heart, which [further] extinguish the heart's light and blinds its vision. Allaah - the Most High - said:

"And do not obey him whose heart We have made to be neglectful of Our remembrance, one who follows his own whims and desires and whose affairs are furat [have gone beyond bounds and whose deeds have been lost]." [18:28].

Qualities of guide

So when a worshipper desires to follow another person, then let him see: Is this person from the people of dhikr, or from the people who are negligent [about remembering Allaah]? Does this person judge in accordance with his whims and desires, or by the Revelation? So, if he judges by whims and desires then he is actually from those people who are negligent; those whose affairs have gone beyond bounds and whose deeds are lost.

The term furat [which occurs in the above verse] has been explained in many ways. It has been explained to mean:- (i) losing the rewards of that type of action which is essential to do, and in which lies success and happiness; (ii) exceeding the limits of something; (iii) being destroyed; and (iv) opposing the truth. Each of these sayings are very close in meaning to each other.

The point is that Allaah - the One free from all imperfections, the Most High - has prohibited following all those who possess such attributes. So it is absolutely essential that a person considers whether such attributes are found in his shaykh, or the person who's example he follows, or the person that he obeys. If they are, then he should distance himself from such a person. However, if it is found that the person is, in most cases, pre-occupied with the dhikr of Allaah and with following the Sunnah, and his affairs do not exceed the limits, but rather he is judicious and resolute in his affairs, then he should cling to him very firmly.

Indeed, there is no difference between the living and the dead, except with the dhikr of Allaah; since [the Prophet sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam] said: "The example of one who remembers Allaah and someone who does not, is like the example between the living and the dead."

Six Etiquettes of Learning

Ibn al-Qayyim - rahimahullaah- said: "There are six stages to knowledge:

Firstly: Asking questions in a good manner.
Secondly: Remaining quiet and listening attentively.

Thirdly: Understanding well.

Fourthly: Memorizing.

Fifthly: Teaching.

Sixthly: and it is its fruit: Acting upon the knowledge and keeping to its limits."

Fruits of Humility

Ibn al-Qayyim - rahimahullaah - said

One of the Salaf (Pious Predecessors) said: "Indeed a servant commits a sin by which he enters Paradise; and another does a good deed by which he enters the Fire." It was asked: How is that? So he replied:

"The one who committed the sin, constantly thinks about it; which causes him to fear it, regret it, weep over it and feel ashamed in front of his Lord - the Most High - due to it. He stands before Allaah, broken-hearted and with his head lowered in humility. So this sin is more beneficial to him than doing many acts of obedience, since it caused him to have humility and humbleness - which leads to the servant's happiness and success - to the extent that this sin becomes the cause for him entering Paradise. As for the doer of good, then he does not consider this good a favor from his Lord Upon him. Rather, he becomes arrogant and amazed with himself, saying: I have achieved such and such, and such and such. So this further increases him in self adulation, pride and arrogance - such that this becomes the cause for his destruction."

Purifying the Heart

Ibn al-Qayyim - rahimahullaah- said:

"There is no doubt that the heart becomes covered with rust, just as metal dishes - silver, and their like - become rusty. So the rust of the heart is polished with dhikr (remembrance of Allaah), for dhikr polishes the heart until it becomes like a shiny mirror. However, when dhikr is abandoned, the rust returns; and when it commences then the heart again begins to be cleansed. Thus the heart becoming rusty is due to two matters: sins and ghaflah ( neglecting remembrance of Allaah ). Likewise, it is cleansed and polished by two things : istighfaar (seeking Allaah's forgiveness) and dhikr."

Jihaad Against the Self

"Jihaad (striving) against the soul has four stages:

Firstly: To strive in learning guidance and the religion of truth, without which there will be no success. Indeed, there can be neither true happiness, nor any delight in this world and in the Hereafter,
except through it.

Secondly: Striving to act upon what has been learnt, since knowledge without action will not benefit, rather it will cause harm.

Thirdly: Striving to invite others towards it and to teach those who do not know, otherwise he may be considered from those who hide what Allaah has revealed of guidance and clear explanation. Such knowledge will neither benefit, nor save a person from the punishment of Allaah.

Fourthly: Striving to be patient and persevering against those who oppose this da'wah (call) to Allaah and those who seek to cause harm - patiently bearing all these hardships for the sake of Allaah.

When these four stages are completed then such a person is considered to be amongst the Rabbaaniyyoon. The Salaf were agreed that a Scholar does not deserve the title of Rabbaanee until he recognizes and knows the truth, acts upon it, and teaches it to others. So whosoever has knowledge, acts upon it, and teaches this knowledge to others, is considered from the Rabbaaniyyoon."

Trials of the Heart

Ibn al-Qayyim said, whilst commenting upon the following hadeeth: "Trials and tribulations will be presented to hearts, as a reed mat is interwoven stick by stick. Any heart, which absorbs these trials, will have a black mark put in it. However, any heart that rejects them will have a white mark put in it. The result is that hearts will be of two kinds: one white like a white stone, which will not be harmed by trials as long as the heavens and earth endure; and the other dark and rusty, like an over-turned vessel; not able to recognise the good, nor reject evil, but rather being absorbed with its desires."

"The fitan (trials) which are presented to the hearts - and which are the cause of its weakness - are:

(i) the trials relating to shahwah (false desire) and

(ii) the trials relating to shubhah (doubt)... so the first causes intentions and desires to be corrupted, whilst the second causes knowledge and beliefs to be corrupted".

Speaking about such trials, he - rahimahullaah - said: "Hearts - when exposed to such fitan (trials) - are of two types:

The first type: a heart, which, when exposed to such trials, absorbs it like a sponge that soaks-up water, leaving in it a black stain. Such a heart continues to soak-up the various trials that are presented to it, until it becomes dark and corrupted - which is what is meant by "an over-turned vessel. "So when this occurs, two dangerous and deadly diseases take hold of it and plunge it into destruction:

Firstly: confusing good with evil, so it neither recognises the good, nor rejects the evil. This disease may take hold of it to such an extent that it believes good to be evil; and evil to be good, Sunnah to be bid'ah (innovation); and innovations to be the Sunnah. and the truth to be falsehood: and falsehood the truth.

Secondly: judging by its whims and desires, over and against what Allaah's Messenger sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam came with being enslaved by its whims and desires and being led by them also.

The second type: a white heart in which the light of eemaan is bright and its radiance is illuminating. So when trials are presented to such a heart, it rejects and turns away from them. This further increases its light and illumination and its strength."

Four Principles of Worship

"(TheAayah): "You alone do we worship." [Soorah al faatihah 1:5] is built upon four principles:- Ascertaining what Allaah and His Messenger love and are pleased with, from (i) the sayings of the heart and [ii] of the tongue; and (iii) the actions of the heart and [iv] of the limbs.

So al-'Uboodiyyah (servitude and slavery to Allaah) is a comprehensive term for all these four Stages. The one who actualises them has indeed actualised: "You alone do we worship."

The saying of the heart: It is i'tiqaad (belief) in what Allaah - the Most Perfect - informed about His Self; concerning His Names, His Attributes, His Actions, His Angels, and all that He sent upon the tongue of His Messenger sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam.

The saying of the tongue: It is to inform and convey (what Allaah has revealed), to call to it, defend it, to explain the false innovations which oppose it, to establish its remembrance and to convey what it orders.

The action of the heart: Such as love for Him, reliance upon Him, repenting to Him, having fear and hope in Him, making the Deen purely and sincerely for Him, having patience in what He orders and prohibits, having patience with what He decrees and being pleased with it, having allegiance and enmity for His sake, humbling oneself in front of Him and having humility in front of Him, becoming tranquil with Him and other than this from the actions of the heart which are actually connected to the action of the limbs ... and actions of the limbs without the action of the heart is of little benefit if any benefit at all.

The action of the limbs: Such as Prayer and Jihaad, attending the Jumu'ah and being with the Jamaa'ah, aiding those who are unable and displaying goodness and kindness to the creation, and other than this."

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Muslims in the West : Challenges and Opportunities

An interview with Maulana Khalilul Rahman Sajjad Nomani Nadvi

[Maulana Khalilul Rahman Sajjad Nomani Nadwi is from Lucknow, India and is a prolific scholar and thinker of Islam. He is the son of the distinguished Muslim scholar Maulana Muhammad Manzoor Nomani, Rahmatullahi Alayh. He studied at the famous educational establishments of Darul Uloom Nadwatul Ulama and Madinah University. He is a renowned Mufassir of the Qur'an and travels widely for the purpose of Dawah. Recently, he was invited to South Africa to visit the leading Islamic and educational establishments. Sulaiman Kazi from Batley, West Yorkshire joined him for a week and interviewed him in Cape Town on 20th October 2002. Below is a transcript of his advice for Muslims living in the West.]

Question: What advice would you give to Muslims in the West following the events of September 11, 2001?

Answer: Transforming challenges into opportunities is a Sunnah (tradition) of the Prophet Muhammad, Sallallaho Alayhi Wasallam. All Islamic progress has been made when challenges have been transformed into opportunities.

One positive aspect of the global situation is that the whole world is now discussing Islam. People are more willing to understand Islam. This is therefore an ideal opportunity to promote and propagate Islam, which can be done by practical example through one's behavior. At the same time try to dispel and allay fears and misconceptions about the religion.

In order to avail of this opportunity, a balanced psyche is needed. One should avoid being reactionary and adopt a positive approach. Otherwise there is the danger of being swept aside by the tide of hatred and extremism. There are greater harms than benefits of this to Islam. If we can transform the challenges that face us into opportunities, then ultimately we are going to prevail.

Question: What advice would you give to Muslims regarding Dawah in the West?

Answer: Open up. Find opportunities and seize chances to convey the message of Islam to others. Create chances and try to invite people, whether at home or in public places. Try your best to allay fear and clarify any misunderstanding about Islam. All attempts should be made to remove doubts and misgivings about Islam.

Muslims also need to learn how to share their values, which they have been concealing for the last several decades. They had done this at the time as a precautionary measure to preserve their identity and this was considered necessary too. However, we can no longer afford to live in an isolationist manner. It is imperative to share your ideals with people. You need to discuss and explain your beliefs in schools, colleges, factories, offices etc. Wherever possible you need to promote a true understanding of Islam and Muslims. For this purpose people should take time off work if necessary. The media should be used appropriately in disseminating the true message of Islam. Proper use should also be made of the Mosques. The methodology of Masjidun Nabi will instruct us in this matter. Non-Muslims, including women visitors, would visit the Masjid and the Prophet would welcome them earnestly. Bear in mind that those people who have not yet accepted Islam are not bound by its rules and regulations, for example the rules of purity and cleanliness do not apply to them. Of course these rules only apply once someone accepts Islam. By understanding this delicate point it will become easy to open our Mosques to non-Muslims.

We should thereby draw public opinion more favorably towards Islam. We have to make the point clear that there is some Satanic force at work which, for its own vested interest, is creating unfounded hatred and misgivings about Islam and Muslims. It is creating a mutual hostility between Muslims and the rest of the world. We must be vigilant about this, and not let them succeed.

Question: What advice would you offer to the Ulama, professionals and Muslims masses living in the West?

Answer: I would humbly request the religious scholars - as a friend and colleague - that they have so far succeeded quite admirably in preserving Islam among Muslims in the western world. Their sermons, advices and admonitions have made this achievement possible. When I visit western countries I am reminded about the Qur'anic Verse: "And lo! in the cattle there is a lesson for you. We give you to drink of that which is in their bellies, from between the refuse and the blood, pure milk palatable to the drinkers." (Surah 14: 66). There is a parable in this verse in which Almighty Allah illustrates His signs by drawing pure milk between waste and blood. Similarly, you are living in an environment of immorality in the West yet preserving the spirit of purity and faith. This is highly commendable.

The next stage of our endeavor has begun, although somewhat belatedly. This relates to shifting from an attitude of preserving ones faith to actually propagating it to non-Muslims. If this opportunity is lost then future generations may not be so fortunate. It is my humble request, especially to the Ulama, to use whatever means to increase efforts in this regard. Please try to avoid and overlook differences, especially finer points stemming from the teachings of different schools of thought. Our challenge at this time is not against any school of thought, but against global satanic forces. Our attention should be focused in that direction. I can say no more to the Ulama but to remind them of the approach of Shah Waliullah, Rahmatullahi Alayh (1703-1762). He was born at a time when Kufr was in the ascendancy. But we can draw valuable lessons and wisdom from his methodology and efforts in uniting people of different affiliations. He managed to unite Muslims and confront the inherent dangers posed by the forces of Kufr. This resulted in the great movement of Syed Ahmed Shahid, Rahmatullahi Alayh (1786-1831), and later Shaikhul Hind Maulana Mahmudul Hasan, Rahmatullahi Alayh.

As far as professionals are concerned, I would ask them to use their position and power not only for the advancement of their careers but also for Muslims and humanity at large.

Regarding the Muslim masses, I would request them to become true Muslims and persuade as many people as possible towards Islam. If you do this collectively then a noticeable difference can be made. Everybody should contribute in this noble effort - males and females, young and old.

Finally and very importantly, don't become despondent. Don't become irritated or vexatious by world events. Try to understand that after every difficulty there is ease. The Qur'an alludes to this by saying: "Verily then along with every hardship is ease. Verily along with every hardship is ease." (Surah 94: 5-6). All nations have to go through these cycles. A human also goes through various phases, for example sometimes he is happy, sometimes he is sad. Nations too must go through different circumstances. If we become afraid then our recovery is hampered. It is therefore necessary to sustain ones will-power and self-confidence. May Almighty Allah grant the whole Ummah the understanding not to be despondent, irritated or vexatious but to channel their energies towards finding solutions, instead of creating problems.

Question: What involvement should Muslims have in the political process to redress injustices in the world?

Answer: Islam has been ordained to establish justice on earth. The Qur'an refers to the mission of the Prophets, Alayhis Salam, saying: "Indeed We have sent Our Messengers with clear proofs, and revealed with them the Scripture and the Balance (justice) that mankind may keep up justice " (Surah 57:25). All efforts should be made, bearing in mind the political situation of a particular country, to ensure full participation in the political process. This is an absolute necessity. Muslims should not be reticent about their involvement in this regard. Rather, they should make progress in this matter. Obviously they do not have the ideal political process yet, as this can only happen when injustice is totally eliminated. We can however draw valuable guidance from the life and teachings of Rasulullah, Sallaho Alayhi Wasallam. He established alliances with various non-Muslim groups and signed treaties. These alliances were made with a view to combating the major evil. Keep this in mind and, whilst exercising caution and prudence, ensure your active participation in nation-building and social work. Only then will we be able to attract positive comments about our character. Otherwise, it is unreal to expect people to understand Islam simply by visiting our Mosques and reading Islamic books.

The above was translated and transcribed from Urdu into English by Sulaiman Kazi.

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Children's duties to Parents

By Farida Khanam

7 Tips for Improving your Relationship with the Quran

Are you one of those people who rarely touches the Qur'an? Or do you read daily, but don't find it is having the impact on you that it should? Whatever the case may be, these are some simple tips that can help you connect with the Qur'an.

Before you touch it, check your heart

The key to really benefiting from the Qur'an is to check your heart first, before you even touch Allah's book. Ask yourself, honestly, why you are reading it. Is it to just get some information and to let it drift away from you later? Remember that the Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) was described by his wife as a "walking Qur'an": in other words, he didn't just read and recite the Qur'an, he lived it.

2. Do your Wudu (ablution)

Doing your Wudu is good physical and mental preparation to remind you you're not reading just another book. You are about to interact with God, so being clean should be a priority when communicating with Him.

3. Start off with reading only 5 minutes everyday

Too often, we think we should read Qur'an for at least one whole hour. If you aren't in the habit of reading regularly, this is too much. Start off with just five minutes daily. If you took care of step one, Insha Allah (God willing), you will notice that those five minutes will become ten, then half an hour, then an hour, and maybe even more

4. Make sure you understand what you've read

Five minutes of reading the Qur'an in Arabic is good, but you need to understand what you're reading. Make sure you have a good translation of the Qur'an in the language you understand best. Always try to read the translation and commentary as well of what you've read that day.

5. Remember, the Qur'an is more interactive than a CD

In an age of "interactive" CD-Roms and computer programs, a number of people think books are passive and boring. But the Qur'an is not like that. Remember that when you read Qur'an, you are interacting with Allah. He is talking to you, so pay attention.

6. Don't just read, listen too

There are now many audio cassettes and CDs of the Qur'an, a number of them with translations as well. This is great to put on your walkman or your car's CD or stereo as you drive to and from work. Use this in addition to your daily Qur'an reading, not as a replacement for it.

7. Make Dua (supplication)

Ask Allah to guide you when you read the Qur'an. Your aim is to sincerely, for the love of Allah, interact with Him by reading, understanding and applying His blessed words. Making Dua to Allah for help and guidance will be your best tool for doing this.

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Saviours of Islamic Spirit

S. Abul Hasan Ali Nadvi (RA)

Salah ud-Din Ayyoubi (RA)

Salah ud-din was, in truth and reality, a standing miracle of the Prophet of Islam and a manifest sign of the truthfulness and authenticity of his message.

Salah ud-din was brought up like other Kurd youths of moderate means, studying the conventional sciences and the art of warfare. Nobody could have predicted before Salah ud-din captured Egypt and confronted the Crusaders, that this young man would one day emerge as the conqueror of Jerusalem and a great Defender of the Faith, and that he would achieve such an eminence as to be looked upon by posterity as a brilliant example for his ardent zeal and courage in fighting the infidels, or, for his sterling virtues which could rightly be envied even by the most pious and pure in heart. Describing the youthful days of Salah ud-din, Lane-Poole says :

'"As the favoured governors son, he naturally enjoyed a privileged position, but, far from exhibiting any symptoms of future greatness, he was evidently a shining example of that tranquil virtue which shuns 'the last infirmity of the noble minds'."2

God had, however, destined him to become the most renowned leader of his time; and when God wills a thing He provides the means there for. His master Nur-ud-din ordered him to proceed to Egypt. Cadi Baha ud-din ibn Shaddad, a trusted councilor of Salah ud-din, writes that the latter had confessed it to him that he had gone to Egypt dragged against his will, like one driven to his death. It was the fulfilment of what the Quran says : But it may happen that ye hate a thing whiih is good for you, and it may happen that ye love a thing which is bad for you?

Transformation of his life:

Salah ud-din was, however, completely a changed man after assuming power in Egypt. Conviction dawned upon him that God had to take some work from him which would be thwarted by the 'pursuits of pleasure.

Ibn Shaddad is on record that "no sooner did he assume the over-lordship of Egypt, the world and its pleasures lost all significance in his eyes. With a heart-felt sense of gratitude for the favour bestowed by God on him he gave up drinking, renounced the temptations of pleasure, and took to the life of sweat and toil which went on increasing with the passage of time.'" Lane-Poole too has the same story to tell. He says:

"On his side, Saladin began to order his life more rigorously. Devout as he had always shown himself, he became even more strict and austere. He put aside the thought of pleasure and the love of ease, adopted a Spartan rule, and set it as an example to his troops. He devoted all his energies henceforth to one great objectto found a Moslem empire strong enough to drive the infidels out of the land. 'When God gave me the land of Egypt,' said he, 'I was sure that He meant Palestine for me also.' It may well be that natural selfish ambition quickened his zeal; but the result was the 'same: thenceforward his career was one long championship of Islam. He had vowed himself to the Holy War."

Zeal for Jehad:

The constant aim of his efforts was to fight in the way of God. Describing the zeal of Salah ud-din for Jehad, writes Ibn Shaddad: "Fired with the zeal to wage war against the Crusaders, Jehad was the most favourite topic of his discussion; he was always seen making his dispositions for the strengthening of his forces, seeking out men and materials for the same purpose and paying attention to anyone who spoke about these matters to him. He had gladly abandoned for its sake his hearth and home, family and children, and betaken to the life of the camp where a wind could uproot his tent. Anybody encouraging him in his ambitions could easily win his confidence."

"One could make a solemn affirmation that after he started the war against the Crusaders he never spent a single shell on anything save on the preparation for war and helping his men." Ibn Shaddad continues:

"The Sultan appeared to be like a bereaved mother on the battle-field, who had been deprived of her only child by the cruel hands of Death. He could be seen trotting on his horse from one end of the battle-field to another, exhorting the people to fight for the sake of Allah. He would himself go round all the detachments, with tears in his eyes, asking people to come forth for the aid of Islam." The same writer describes how Salah ud-din spent his days during the siege of Acre :

"Excepting a sweet-drink for which his physician insisted, the Sultan did not take anything for the whole day.

"The royal physician told me that the Sultan had taken only a few morsels of food from Friday to Sunday as he was unable to pay attention to anything save the happenings on the battle-field."

Battle of Hittin:

After a series of fights and forays a hotly-contested battle was fought in the neighbourhood of Tiberias beneath the hills of Hittin, on Saturday, the 24th of Rabi ul-Akhir, 583 a.h., which gave a death-blow to the power of the Crusaders. The victory achieved by the Sultan has been described thus by Lane-Poole:

"The flower of chivalry was taken. The king and his brother, Reginald of Chatillon, Joscelin of Courtenay, Humphrey of Toron, the Masters of the Temple and Hospital, and many other nobles were among the prisoners .... The rest of the chivalry of Palestine was under Moslem warders. Of the rank and file, all who were alive were made prisoners. A single Saracen was seen dragging some thirty Christians he had himself taken, tied together with a tent-rope. The dead lay in heaps, like stones upon stones, among broken crosses, severed hands and feet, whilst mutilated heads strewed the ground like a plentiful crop of melons.

"The field long bore the marks of the bloody fight where '30,000' Christians were said to have fallen. A year afterwards the heaps of bleaching bones could be seen from afar, and the hills and valleys were strewn with the relics of the horrid orgies of wild beasts."

Religious Ardour of the Sultan :

The fateful fight at Hittln came to a close with an incident which is symptomatic of Sultan Salah ud-din's fiery zeal for the religion. This is how Lane-Foole describes it:

"Saladin camped on the field of battle. When, his tent was pitched, he ordered the prisoners to be brought before him. The King of Jerusalem and Reginald of Chatillon he received in his tent; he seated the King near himself, and seeing his thirst, he gave him a cup of water iced in snow. Guy drank and passed the cup to the lord of Karak: but Saladin was visibly annoyed. 'Tell the king,' he said to the interpreter, 'that it was he, not I, that gave that man drink.' The protection of 'bread and salt' was not to baulk his vengeance. Then he rose and confronted Reginald, who was still standing: 'Twice have I sworn to kill him; once when he sought to invade the holy cities, and again when he took the caravan by treachery, Lo ! I will avenge Mohammed upon thee!' And he drew his sword and cut him down with his own hand, as he had sworn. The guard finished it and dragged the body out of the tent; and God sped his soul to Hell.

"The King, trembling at the sight, believed his own turn was now coming, but Saladin reassured him : It is not the custom, of kings to slay kings; but that man had transgressed all bounds, so what happened, happened.''!

Ibn Shaddad's version of Reginald of Chatillon's execution adds that Salah ud-din offered him the choice of Islam and on his refusal cut off his head. The Sultan said: "Lo! I avenge Muhammad, (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) upon thee."

Conquest of Jerusalem:

The victory at Hittin was but the prelude to the much coveted conquest of Jerusalem by Sulah ud-din. The intense desire of Salah ud-din for regaining the holy city has been starkly depicted by Ibn Shaddad who says that "the Sultan was so keen for Jerusalem that the hills would have shrunk from bearing the burden he carried in his heart."

On Friday, the 27th of Rajab, 583 a. h., the day of the Prophet's Ascension when he had led the congregational prayer of the earlier prophets in Jerusalem, the Sultan entered the city.

Ibn Shaddad has given a graphic account of this memorable day. He writes:

"It was the victory of victories. A large crowd consisting of scholars and the nobles, traders and the laity had gathered on this joyous occasion. A number of people had come from the coastal lands on getting the news of the Sultan's victory, and so had come nearly all the notable theologians from Egypt and Syria to congratulate him on his victory. Hardly any dignitary or any noteworthy personage of the empire was left behind. The joyful shouts of 'God is Great', and 'There is no god but God' rent the skies. After ninety years Friday prayer was again held in Jerusalem. The Cross that glittered on the Dome of the Rock was pulled down. An indescribable event as it was, the blessings and the succour of God were to be witnessed everywhere on the day."' A costly pulpit which had been designed under the orders of Nur ud-din Zangi twenty years ago was brought from Aleppo and erected in the Dome of the Rock.

Benevolence of Salah ud-din :

The forbearance, humanity and magnanimity of Salah ud-din on this occasion was in striking contrast with the brutality of his Christian foes. The Christian biographer of Salah ud-din, Lane Poole, acknowledges that the Sultan's kindness of heart had conquered his desire for revenge. He writes:

"Never did Saladin show himself greater than during this memorable surrender. His guards, commanded by responsible emirs, kept order in every street, and prevented violence and insult, insomuch that no ill-usage of the Christians was ever heard of. Every exit was in his hands, and a trustee Lord was set over David's gate to receive the ransoms as each citizen came forth."

Then, after describing how the people left in the holy city were ransomed and how al-Malik al-Adil, the brother of the Sultan, the Patriarch and Balian of Ibelin, were each allowed to set free a thousand slaves given by Salah ud-din, Lane-Poole writes:

"Then said Saladin to his officers: 'My brother has made his alms, and the Patriarch and Balian have made theirs; now I would fain make mine.' And he ordered his guards to proclaim throughout the streets of Jerusalem that all the old people who could not pay were free to go forth. And they came forth from the postern of St. Lazarus, and their going lasted from the rising of the sun until night fell. Such was the charity which Saladin did, of poor people without number."

"Thus did the Saracens show mercy to the fallen city. One recalls the savage conquest by the first Crusaders in 1099, when Godfrey and Tancred rode through streets choked with the dead and dying, when defenseless Moslems were tortured, burnt, and shot down in cold blood on the towers and roof of the Temple, when the blood of wanton massacre defiled the honour of Christendom and stained the scene where once the gospel of love and mercy had been preached. 'Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy was a forgotten beatitude when the Christians made shambles of the Holy City. Fortunate were the merciless, for they obtained mercy at the hands of the Moslem Sultan.

"The greatest attribute of Heaven is Mercy;

And it is the crown of justice, and the glory. Where it may kill with right, to save with pily.

If the taking of Jerusalem were the only fact known about Saladin, it were enough to prove him the most chivalrous and great-hearted conqueror of his own, and perhaps of any, age.

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DARUL ULOOM ILAHIYAH
INSTITUTE OF ISLAMIC RESEARCH
ILAHI BAGH, BUCHPORA, SRINAGAR, 190011, KASHMIR, INDIA