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One of my favourite lectures by Shaykh Abdal Hakim Murad is called ‘Reliance on Allah’. A few years ago, I posted an excerpt from this lecture here.
Within this lecture, Shaykh Abdal Hakim Murad narrates two of his favourite poems. One is by Imam al-Haddad, and the other one is called Ya Nafsu by Shaykh Ali bin Husayn al-Habshi (which is also one of my absolute favourites!). I’m not sure what the name of the poem by Imam al-Haddad is (Shaykh does not mention it in the lecture, if anyone knows, then please do let me know!), but it’s absolutely beautiful so I wanted to share it here:
O my friend, O my friend,
Don’t panic, don’t be aggrieved,
And submit, just submit to Allah’s decrees so that you could be praiseworthy and rewarded.
Have Rida, be accepting,
Be pleased with what the Lord has arranged and distributed and decreed,
And do not be angry at Allah’s decree because He is the Lord of the Great Throne.
If you are angry with the way Allah has arranged things, then you don’t have this great state of Rida.
You can listen to the Shaykh recite the poem in the video clip below (forward to 00:50 mins). On second thoughts, I highly recommend listening to the full lecture, you won’t regret it, I assure you! (Full lecture is the second video below).
يا خير من دفنت في الترب أعظمه *** فطاب من طيبهن القاع والأكم
نفسي الفداء لقبر أنت ساكنه *** فيه العفاف وفيه الجود والكرم
أنت الحبيب الذي ترجى شفاعته *** عند الصراط إذا ما زلت القدم
لولاك ما خلقت شمس ولا قمر *** ولا سماء ولا لوح ولا قلم
صلى عليك إله العرش ما طلعت *** شمس وحن إليك الضال والسلم
O best of whose bones were buried in the earth
Giving from their blessings to landscapes and hills
I give my soul in sacrifice to the grave you occupy
Within it is chastity, generosity, and liberality
You’re the Beloved whose intercession is sought
On the narrow path towards heaven if my foot slips
Had it not been for you, nor the sun nor the moon would’ve been created
Nor the sky, Tablet or Pen
May the Lord of the Throne pray upon you as many times
As the sun rises and as those astray and whole yearn for you
These beautiful lines of poetry come from a poem that Imam Ibn Katheer narrates in his commentary on verse 64 from chapter 4 where Allah says:
ولو أنهم إذ ظلموا أنفسهم جاءوك فاستغفروا الله واستغفر لهم الرسول لوجدوا الله توابا رحيما
And had they when they were unjust to themselves, come to you and asked for forgiveness of Allah and the Messenger had also asked forgiveness for them, they would have found Allah Oft-returning (to mercy), Merciful
A bedouin came to the grave where the Prophet peace be upon him is buried and said: “O Messenger of Allah, I’ve committed a grave sin. But I’ve heard Allah say in the Quran (and he recited the above mentioned verse), and I’m here to ask Allah for forgiveness and ask you to ask Him as well for me to be forgiven”. He followed this by reciting the poem where the above lines of poetry come from, weeped, and walked away. Al Utbi was watching this happen and after the bedouin left he fell asleep and saw the Prophet peace be upon him in his dream and was told to go catch up with the bedouin and give him glad tidings that Allah has forgiven him.
The more I reflect on this story the more overwhelming I find it. It’s all about love and connection with the Beloved peace be upon him. The lines of poetry can only come out of love for the Prophet peace be upon him. The concern our Prophet peace be upon him has for us can only be from his love and mercy. The love of Allah for His Messenger peace be upon him that He guarantees forgiveness and mercy for those whom His Messenger peace be upon him is interceding for.
One of the things I really yearn for is to have love for our Messenger peace be upon him as the love his companions may Allah be pleased with them had for him. There is a narration by Anas Ibn Malik may Allah be pleased with him in Sahih Al Bukhari where he says that the Messenger of Allah peace and blessings be upon him said:
By the One who my soul is in His hand, none of you truly believes until I am more beloved to him than his self, his wealth, his children, and all people. Umar Ibn Al Khattab may Allah be pleased with him replied to this by saying:
“O Messenger of Allah! By Allah you are more beloved to me than everything else, except my own self.”
To this the Messenger of Allah peace be upon him said:
“No O Umar. Not until I’m more beloved to you than your own self”
So Umar may Allah be pleased with him quickly recanted his initial response by saying:
“O Messenger of Allah! By Allah you are more beloved to me than everything else, even my own self”
The Messenger of Allah peace be upon replied:
“Umar, now you have it!”
To have that kind of love is truly magnificent. This type of love that brought people to sacrifice their own lives quite literally in defence of the Messenger peace be upon him during battle. It’s the type of love that brought a companion to pray to become blind after the passing of the Beloved peace be upon him from this world so that the last thing his eyes saw would’ve been the Prophet peace be upon him’s face. It’s a love that brought the toughest of the companions to their knees weeping after the news of his passing peace be upon him from this world.
I want you to picture this scene with me for a few minutes. Close your eyes and take a trip to Medina and watch Umar Ibn Al Khattab may Allah be pleased with him at first getting furious and waving his sword threatening to kill anyone who says “Muhammad is dead”. Then Abu Bakr As’Sideeq may Allah be pleased with him getting up and declaring the passing of the Prophet peace be upon him and reciting the verses from the Qur’an that relate to his human nature peace be upon him. This is when Umar, a man whose size from a far gives the illusion as if he’s riding a horse when in fact he would be walking, collapses on the ground and weeps intensely.
Bilal Ibn Rabah may Allah be pleased with him, the muezzin of the Prophet peace be upon him, left Medina to Syria because he could not stay in a city where everything reminds him of something about his most Beloved. After a couple of years of not visiting, the Prophet peace be upon him appears to Bilal in a dream and says:
ما هذا الجفاء يا بلال؟ أما آن لك أن تزورنا؟
What’s this coldness towards us O Bilal? Isn’t it time for you to visit us?
As soon as Bilal may Allah be pleased with him sees the city of the Prophet peace be upon him, he starts to weep before he enters. He continues to cry until he reaches the mosque of the Prophet peace be upon him and collapses in tears by his grave. The Prophet peace upon him’s grandsons Al-Hasan and Al-Husayin may Allah shower them with peace and mercy came to Bilal may Allah be pleased with him and they all hugged for a long time. They asked him to get up and call the Athan, which he hasn’t called ever since the passing of the Prophet peace upon him. He initially refused the same request from Abu Bakr and Umar may Allah be pleased with them because it was too difficult for him and he couldn’t bring himself to do it. But he couldn’t refuse the request from the grandchildren of the Prophet peace be upon him and finally agrees.
Bilal may Allah be pleased with him makes it to the roof of the mosque and starts calling: Allahu Akbar! Allahu Akbar!
At an instant everyone in Medina, young and old, men and women, all begin to cry. It’s been a few years since they heard the same voice call for the prayer that the Prophet peace be upon him would lead. Everyone’s minds are now flooded with all kinds of memories of the times when the Prophet peace be upon him was among them. They even thought that he peace be upon him was brought back to life. As for Bilal may Allah be pleased with him… well, he got to the part where he bare witnessed that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah and choked up at the name; he couldn’t finish calling the Athan.
I’ve been reflecting lately on something that I’ve come to realize. Most of us when we raise our hands in prayer, we usually ask for Allah’s blessings, help in our needs, facilitate our affairs, make our difficult circumstances easy, etc. But it seems that very few of us ask Allah to throw love of our Messenger peace be upon him similar to his companions’ love in our hearts. I’ve asked a few people if they’ve ever prayed to Allah to grant them the vision of the Prophet peace be upon him in their sleep. Sadly, the majority said they never even thought of it.
In the collection of Imam Ahmed is a narration by Anas Ibn Malik may Allah be pleased with him where he relates that the Prophet peace be upon him said to Abu Bakr may Allah be pleased with him:
O Abu Bakr, I wish I could meet my brothers. I wish I could meet my brothers, for I love them!
Abu Bakr may Allah be pleased with him said:
O Messenger of Allah! We’re your brothers!
He peace be upon him said:
You’re my companions. My brothers are a people that haven’t seen me, believed in me, and loved me so much so that I’m more beloved to them than their parents and their children.
It’s all about love. So close your eyes for a minute. Imagine that you’ve been granted a chance to meet the most Beloved who called you his brother or sister and said he wished he could meet you. You’re so important to him that he was concerned about you even though he came over 1420 years ago. The most caring, loving, merciful gift from the Most Merciful is giving you his undivided attention for as long as you’d like. What you say to him?
May Allah throw love of the Him and His Messenger peace be upon him into our hearts, and may He grant us seeing him peace be upon him in our dreams and having his company in the highest heavens in the Next World.
© Mohamed Ghilan, Rabi’ al-Awwal 1433/February 2012
I read and hear much about you
Yet I feel I lack knowledge of you.
To know you is to love you.
I look for your approval in everything I do
always asking myself what would my
beloved Muhammad do?
None can ever amount to you
the walking Quran
Joy it is emulating you
for fear of not seeing you
What a blessing it is to be from your ummah
though most of us are headless of your Sunnah
so consumed in this Dunya but
I don’t want to trade it for Akhiirah
I stop and ponder for a moment
words so miraculous that move the soul
I realize my goals – limited to materialism
empty life, lived and lost, but from now
I make my goal to be with you in the next life
I love thee
Oh I love thee
but I question my sincerity in this claim
Some choose to speak ill of you
create displeasing images of you
they don’t know how much we love you
their efforts are meaningless
your image remains changeless
My heart pains infinitely
to have been able to protect you we aspire
to have been in your company we crave and
to be with you in the hereafter we live for.
Visiting you was when my life turned a corner.
the feeling of unworthiness being in your house.
how can a slave full of sins be giving salaams to the sincerest?
Your example leaves me breathless
how you would get up and kiss Fatima
your love for Hassan and Hussein
indeed you are the best of creation oh beloved
And while I write this, my prayers continue in my quest to be with you,
I am just a sinful servant who thinks much of you
© Lover of the Prophet, Rabi’ al-Awwal 1433/February 2012
By Farhat Khan
I was asked by my friend and blogger Sidra Mushtaq to write a few lines about Prophet Muhammad sallaAllahu ‘alayhi wasalam that I find inspiring. It has been really difficult and challenging to narrow it down to a few lines as I think that all phases of his life are inspirational in their own ways and we can learn from his life no matter which situation we are in our lives. His relations as husband, father, neighbor, friend, guide, leader and employee among many are all guidelines for us in our different roles in life no matter which culture we belong to.
Much can be written about how he sallaAllahu ‘alayhi wasalam conducted social justice and practiced human rights, taking care of different groups in the community including even the disabled and marginalised. He would take care that the needs of the poor, orphans and widows were fulfilled. With his sallaAllahu ‘alayhi wasalam wisdom he sallaAllahu ‘alayhi wasalam created a community centre in his mosque in Medina and established the fundaments of proper education, spiritual inspiration, healthcare, and charity and built the first Muslim community that proved to grow as one of the strongest communities. And most of all he sallaAllahu ‘alayhi wasalam was a spiritual inspiration for those around him sallaAllahu ‘alayhi wasalam continues to be so centuries after his sallaAllahu ‘alayhi wasalam death.
Learning about the wise, just, kind and merciful prophet of Allah, the seerah and shamail both are full of insightful examples of how he sallaAllahu ‘alayhi wasalam dealt with people around himsallaAllahu ‘alayhi wasalam no matter which religion they belonged to. When reading about such a personality one would wonder how it would be if you had met him sallaAllahu ‘alayhi wasalam. I have always imagined that such a person would have a peaceful and calm radiance around him. And when reading about his sallaAllahu ‘alayhi wasalam noble features in Shamail I came to know that his companions had described the beauty of prophet Muhammad sallaAllahu ‘alayhi wasalam as the full moon. It is his inner beauty that attracted so many towards him sallaAllahu ‘alayhi wasalam. And there is no doubt that this inner beauty was shown outwardly as well:
It is related from Jaabir (Radiallahu anhu) that he said: ” I once saw Rasulullah (Sallallahu alaihe wasallam) on the night of a full moon. On that night he wore red clothing. At times I looked at the full moon and at times at Rasulullah (Sallallahu alaihe wasallam) . Ultimately I came to the conclusion that Rasulullah (Sallallahu alaihe wasallam) was more handsome, beautiful and more radiant than the full moon.”
I think about this hadith every time I see the full moon, especially the radiant full moon of Rabi ul Awal that that has a special shine and radiance over it. I imagine our beloved prophet sallaAllahu ‘alayhi wasalam to be even more radiant and I think of the mercy he brought to mankind. His teachings are guidelines for every one of us in every aspect of life. This describes his wisdom and depth of teachings.
May we all have tawfiq to follow his steps and create strong and including communities for all wherever we are and may we live upon the values and principles he sallaAllahu ‘alayhi wasalam brought to us from Allah so that inner beauty is created in our hearts, homes and communities and we become a radiant ummah that reflects our real values to our surroundings and shine like the full moon.
© Farhat Khan, Rabi’ al-Awwal 1433/February 2012
Intention when reciting Salawat
By Naadiyah Ali
Imam al-Haddad preferred to make the following intention when reciting salawat:
“Allahumma I intend by my invocation of salat and salam upon the Prophet to conform to Your Command, to comply with Your Book, and to follow the Sunnah of Your Prophet Muhammad salallahu alaihi wasallam out of love for him, longing for him, and in exaltation of what is due to him; to honour him because he is deserving of this; so accept this from me; by Your Favour and Kindness, and remove the veil of heedlessness from my heart and make me from amongst Your righteous servants.
Allahumma increase him in honour, in addition to the honour You have already conferred upon him, and increase him in glory, to supplement the glory You have given him. Elevate his rank from among the ranks of the Envoys, and his degree from among the degrees of the Prophets. I ask You for your Pleasure and for Paradise, O Lord of the Worlds, and for contentment in the religion, in this world and in the hereafter; and to die whilst living in accordance with the Book, the Sunna and the Jama’a, and by the testimony of faith, without changing or altering it. And forgive me, by Your Favour and Kindness towards me for what I have committed. Indeed, You are the Forgiver and the Merciful.
And bestow salat and salam upon our master Muhammad and his family and companions and give them peace”.
If you are one who loves because of what you receive, then (know that) there is no graciousness, favor, honor, or provision bestowed upon you or any other creature but that God the Exalted has favored you with it purely through His generosity and liberality. How many a good thing has He given you! How many a favor has He granted you! He is your Lord and Guardian, Who created and guided you, to whom your life and your death belong, Who gives you to eat and drink, Who provides and looks after you, Who shelters you and gives you refuge.
He sees your ugly behavior and conceals it; you ask Him to forgive you and He does so, and He sees your righteous behavior and increases and manifests it. You obey Him by His providence and aid and He mentions your name in the Unseen, and casts respect and love for you into the hearts of others. You disobey Him using His favors, yet disobedience does not make Him withhold His favors. How can you love other than this Generous God? Or how could you disobey this Compassionate Lord?
Imam Al-Haddad, The Book of Assistance
“Truly amazing is the believer’s affair. Everything transpiring in his life is good for him. This is something that only occurs for the believer. If a blessing is his lot, he gives thanks for it, and this is good for him. And if he is afflicted with hardship, he patiently endures it, and this is good for him.”
~ Prophet Muhammad (sallaAllahu alayhi wasalam)
“To completely trust in God is to be like a child who knows deeply that even if he does not call for the mother, the mother is totally aware of his condition and is looking after him.”
~ Imam al-Ghazzali
“You disobey Him using His favors, yet disobedience does not make Him withhold His favors.
How can you love other than this Generous God? Or how could you disobey this Compassionate Lord?”
“A calamity that makes you turn to Allah is better for you then a blessing which makes you forget the remembrance of Allah”
~ Shaykh Ibn Taymiyyah