Optimism: I am as my Servant thinks of Me

The Prophet ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) said, “Allah, the Most High, said, ‘I am as My servant thinks (expects) I am. I am with him when he mentions Me. If he mentions Me to himself, I mention him to Myself; and if he mentions Me in an assembly, I mention him in an assembly greater than it. If he draws near to Me a hand’s length, I draw near to him an arm’s length. And if he comes to Me walking, I go to him at speed.’ ” [Hadith Qudsi]

Positive thinking is a great quality of any human being. In order to be stress-free and more effective, we will have to start thinking positively. Positive thinking does not mean that we should ignore life’s less pleasant situations. It means that our attitude towards unpleasant situations will be more positive and we will deal with them in a more productive way. We should think the best is going to happen, not the worst. There is a negative attitude that has spread across the Muslim world. If we have trouble finding a job, we will blame society around us for being racist. If someone is going through hard times, we will assume Allah subḥānahu wa ta’āla (glorified and exalted be He) is punishing them because they are bad Muslims. Allah subḥānahu wa ta’āla (glorified and exalted be He) says in the Qur’an at many places that we should always expect the best of Allah subḥānahu wa ta’āla (glorified and exalted be He), meaning He subḥānahu wa ta’āla (glorified and exalted be He) will have mercy on us and will relieve us of hardship. He subḥānahu wa ta’āla (glorified and exalted be He) will forgive us if we seek forgiveness, will accept our repentance if we repent, will answer us if we supplicate, and will suffice us if we ask for something. We should call upon Allah subḥānahu wa ta’āla (glorified and exalted be He) while we are certain that we will be answered by Him. The mindset for us, and for our children, must be to fulfill our obligations while we are certain that Allah subḥānahu wa ta’āla (glorified and exalted be He) will accept our actions and forgive our sins and make our matters easier for us. So, whoever performs such a deed and believes and expects that Allah subḥānahu wa ta’āla (glorified and exalted be He) will not accept it and that it will not benefit him, this is despair from the Mercy of Allah subḥānahu wa ta’āla (glorified and exalted be He) and is from the greatest of the major sins. Sometimes we assume the worst. We start to think that we are deprived of our rights, have bad luck, deserve more than what Allah subḥānahu wa ta’āla (glorified and exalted be He) gave them, and it is as if they are saying: ‘My Lord has wronged me and deprived me of what I deserve,’ and our soul bears witness to this while our tongue denies it and refuses to openly state this. So, let us ask ourselves, are we protected from this type of mindset? This type of attitude is very destructive and we should try our best to keep our children from negativity and always think positive in all situations.

‘Abdullah bin Mas’ud raḍyAllāhu ‘anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him) said: “By the One besides Who none is worthy of worship, the believer is not given anything good better than his good expectations of Allah subḥānahu wa ta’āla (glorified and exalted be He), and by the One besides Who none is worthy of worship, no servant of Allah subḥānahu wa ta’āla (glorified and exalted be He) expects good of Him except that Allah subḥānahu wa ta’āla (glorified and exalted be He) gives him what he expected, since all good is in His Hand.” [Reflections: Expecting the Best From Allāh, P.No:6]

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Upbringing of Sons 

Guiding Principles for the Upbringing of Sons 
Upbringing of sons is a difficult and tiresome task . Many a parent suffer grief due to the transgression of their offsprings and are in agony because of it . 
In respect of this issue Ibn ul Qayyim al Jawzi [may Allah be pleased with him] comments : 
” Sometimes the grief faced by man due to his children is the expiation of some of his sins and nothing else ! Hence there is glad tiding for the one who tried to bring up his children on the ways preferred by Allah The Glorious and Exalted. And good news is for the one who endured the ordeal  of bringing up his children and it becomes expiation for his sins. So, if you experience fatigue in rearing of your offsprings seek from your Lord forgiveness of your sins ” .
Maqatil bin Suleiman [may Allah have mercy upon him] visited Abbasid Caliph Mansur the day of his pledge of allegiance. Mansur said to him:
“O Maqatil! Admonish me about something.”
To which Maqatil said: “Do I advice you from what I saw or from what I heard?”
Mansur said : “From what you saw.”
Maqatil said : “Listen, O Amir ul Momineen!”
“Omar bin Abdul Aziz had eleven sons and he died leaving only eighteen dinars out of which five dinars were

 used to shroud him, four spent to buy his grave and rest were distributed amongst his sons.
And Hisham bin Abdul Malik too had eleven sons. He left for each son inheritance worth ten lac dinars.
By Allah! O Amir ul Momineen! In just one day I saw one son of Omar bin Abdul Aziz giving away sadaqah in the way of Allah one hundred horses and I saw the son of Hisham begging in the bazar (markets)!!!”
When Omar bin Abdul Aziz was on his death bed people asked him,”what are you leaving behind for your sons?”
To which he replied :
” I have left behind for them Taqwa [piety/fear] of Allah The Glorious The Exalted, so if they are righteous, Allah The Glorious and Exalted is Friend / Guardian of the righteous and if they are otherwise, I shall not leave wealth for them which is helpful for them in the ways of disobedience of Allah.”
Point to Ponder:
People usually work extremely hard to secure their children’s future; striving at great lengths; assuming, after their demise their offspring will only be well and at peace because of the wealth. Whereas they remain ignorant of the larger security which is in the Taqwa [fear / piety] of Allah.  They don’t gift their children the piety which Allah The Glorious, The Exalted has mentioned in His book by saying: [And let those fear as if they had left weak offspring behind and feared for them. So let them fear Allah and speak words of appropriate justice]. [Al Nisa:9] 
When a man would see decline in the character of his son he would do sadaqah / charity, would feed people reciting this verse: [take from their wealth sadaqah to cleanse them and to purify them with it].

And would pray,”O Allah! this charity from me is so that my son develops purity in character because this distortion of his is more cumbersome/ painful for me than his physical disease would be.”
Similarly it is said about another person whenever he couldn’t do sadaqah due to his poverty and his son would annoy him, he would stand in nightly salah, recite Surah AlBaqarah and invoke saying:

“O Allah ! This is sadaqah from me. Accept it from me, and because of it, make him righteous.”
Turn towards Allah by worshipping him with the intention for the righteousness of one’s offspring . Even if they overcome your efforts still they are not able to overcome your intentions.
Our Lord! grant us from among our wives/ spouses and offspring, comfort to our eyes, and make us a leader/ example for the righteous.

Ameen .

-Ustadha Dr Farhat Hashmi 

Ramadan Reflections #16

Someone asked me today about what they should do tonight in terms of worship. I suggested a couple of things (other than Tarawih since they were going to the masjid anyway) but here is what I want to tell you:
You may be running out of steam but keep going and finish strong. Just like a work out: the last few seconds are the most difficult, painful and exhausting, but you have to muster up all the energy and force you have and keep going. You cannot afford to give up. If you drop 10 seconds too early from your plank you might as well start all over again. The last two dead lifts might make you feel like you will drop dead, but you cannot step away. You MUST pick that bar up and do your thing!

“When you think you are done you’re only 40% of what your body is capable of doing. That’s just the limit that we put on ourselves.” – David Goggins

Taiymiyyah zubair

Ramadan Reflections #11

#HalfwayThru #FinishStrong #DoRamadanRight
Ibn al-Jawzi (rA) said:
“When the race horse knows that it is nearing the end of the track, it expends all of its effort to win the race. Do not allow the race horse to be more clever than you. For certainly, deeds are judged by their conclusions. So if you didn’t do well with welcoming Ramadan then perhaps you will do better bidding it farewell.”
Ibn Tamyiya (rA) said:
“What really matters [with Allah] is the perfection of the finale, not the deficiency of the beginning.”
Hasan al-Basri (rA) said:
“Enhance your performance in what is left (of time) and you will be forgiven for that which has passed. But take special care of the time you have left because you do not know when your soul will be turned over to Allah’s Mercy.”

Sh. Mohammad elshinawy

Ramadan Reflections #10

The word shaytan comes from “shatan” meaning rope, which is the rope used to control one’s animal. This points to the chief desire of Shaytan: to control people. In contrast, Allah wants us to be liberated, hence the goal of the Sacred Law to eradicate intoxicants and usury. 
‘Shatana’ also means ‘to be far from,’ i.e. to be far from the mercy of Allah. One notes that the Prophetic way is to be near. Near to family, near to community, not to cut oneself off. Shaytan loves break away movements, because it makes his job easier when one is a lone sheep. 
Allah tells us that Shaytan wants us to be in constant fear. But what is the difference between this fear and taqwa, the fear of Allah. Taqwa is more akin to a warning; a fear of a known thing, the protection from which is in our control. Sdna Ubayy b Kab said, “It as if saying there are thorns on the road so walk carefully.” It’s known and it’s in your control. However satanic scare tactics are from unknown things that are not in your control, so you are completely paralyzed and can’t change it. He wants you to turn to him for help. 
Lastly, if dhikr of Allah expels Shaytan then how can worshippers who make dhikr every day be misguided? Two reasons. One, there is a certain shaytan assigned to all of us who is immune to dhikr. Second, there are Shayateen al-Ins, human beings who have embodied all of these satanic ways and can influence the unlearned worshipper. Hence the value of knowledge. Knowledge protects us from misguidance, while worship purifies us and raises our heavenly ranks. Both are essential. 
We ask Allah protection from the human and non human shayateen.

Sh. Mohammad Elshinawy

Ramadan Reflections #9

“So where are you going?” [Qur’an: Chapter 81, Verse 26]
Stop in your tracks. Reflect. Where are we heading towards right now with our life? Look at your life from a 50,000 ft view and tell me, where are you going?

The Power of Pause 🙂 Ramadan, a blessed month providing us such a wonderful opportunity ❤️

Ramadan Reflections #8

“The example of a believer, who recites the Qur’an and acts on it, is like an orange (utrujjah) which tastes nice and smells nice.

And the example of the believer who does not recite the Qur’an but acts on it is like a date that tastes sweet but has no smell.

And the example of the hypocrite who recites the Quran is like a sweet basil which smells good but tastes bitter.

And the example of a hypocrite who does not recite the Qur’an is like a colocynth (bitter apple) which tastes bitter and has a bad smell.”

[Sahih Bukhari and Sahih Muslim ].