Sacrifice Lovingly

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By Umm ‘Aisha

Bismillah hir Rahman nir Raheem

Scene 1:

Younger Sister: Baji! Do you truly love me?

Elder Sister: Of course I do! You need something again?!!

Younger Sister: Yeah, that pink dress??

Elder Sister: Noooo! Not that one. Take the other one I bought last week.

Scene 2:

Husband: You know I value you so much!

Wife: Me too- Oh I forgot to tell you, I need some money for grocery.

Husband: Not againnn…

Scene 3:

Slave: My Master! I love you so much, I can do anything for you.

Master: ((slaughter your son))

——————–

Slave: Son, I have been ordered to slaughter you.

Son: Do as you are ordered to do, Abbi!

Scene 3 is playing out in my mind as the blessed days of Zilhajj and Eid ul Adha come nearer. As for the first two scenes, aren’t they common occurrences for us? We express our love for others, and just then and there, we prove through our actions that this love is not unconditional . That is how we deal with people in our lives, significant others around us.  But how about our dealings with Allah SWT? While our eyes can’t see Him, our reply to: “Who do you love the most?” is always “Allah SWT”. On the other hand, how much do we bother if our actions are actually pleasing to Him or not? Are we ready to sacrifice what we truly love for His sake? As He has taught us that: “You can’t reach Al-Birr (piety) unless you spend what you love!” (Qur’an 3: 92)

This is not easy, because whatever we love never remains constant. If it’s wealth and money for a couple of years, then later it can be children and wife; if once its beauty and lifestyle then later it can be your profession; if today you love your mobile phone the most, tomorrow it can be your BMW-5! Whatever it is that you love the most and whenever it is in your life, do ask yourself: Am I ready to sacrifice it for Allah SWT? Can I just give it up if Allah asks me to? Can I just let it go because it is hindering my way to my Beloved? Is it dearer to me than my Rabb?

When you will ask these questions from your heart, you will truly know how much  you love your Beloved, how important He and His Deen are to you and how much sacrificing  your love is, for LOVE demands sacrifice, and it starts from giving, not taking. The pinnacle of love is when you can give up your whole self for your beloved and ask only his pleasure in return.

Allah’s love also goes the same way- it asks for sacrifices, it asks for giving up whatever you have only for: ibtighaa’a wajhihi [seeking His face].

And it is not because He needs these things- He doesn’t! He is above and beyond all needs- but yes! He does want to see: who can watch her child crying of thirst in a barren desert and still can say: I love you Rabbi! ; who can leave his new born baby and wife in that barren land and still can say: Its for you Rabbi! ; who can dare put his son on the ground to slit his throat just thinking: As you say Rabbi!

The wonderful aspect in this love for Allah is: When you give up what you have been asked for, He gives it back to you- He doesn’t actually take it away from you, He only puts you to the test to see if you can Sacrifice Lovingly!

Courtesy: Youth Club Blog

Can be found at: http://youthclubblog.wordpress.com/2013/10/03/sacrificelovingly/

I Wonder How Much He Loves Me!

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By Umm ‘Aisha

I wonder how much He loves me. He never scolds me on my faults, he never punishes me, and He never says I have become bad and most of all He never tells anyone what wrongs I did.

He never lets anybody see my inner feelings. At times I am not what people think I am, he never discloses it to anyone, not even when I hurt people and disobey his commands.
Sometimes I want to unveil my bad qualities and bad habits to all those who love me, just to tell them that I don’t deserve their love, just to tell them that I am not that good as much He has made me in their eyes and then He stops me from doing this because he does not like His people to hate me, He gets angry if I expose my bad habits to others but he never gets angry if I commit any sin in solitude or when nobody is watching me, He always welcomes my repentance. When immediately after disobeying him I say “O my LORD, my true GOD, please forgive me!!” He accepts my sorry in a jiffy.

How truly He has said:

فَبِأَيِّ آلَاءِ رَبِّكُمَا تُكَذِّبَانِ

Which then of the bounties of your Lord will you deny?
(Surah Ar Rahman 55:13)

I can never know how much blessings I have been favored with, I can’t thank Him ever!!
I wish I was not this much bad because ALLAH does not want me to be bad…but I am, with all my efforts, I am still bad, I am still a sinner, and I commit grievous sins at times.
And then again I am put to shame by my own acts, when I see my Lord always forgiving me!!
I start thinking that I don’t deserve good people, because I am not good.
But yet my ALLAH gives me more love, more loving people.
I always feel that I don’t care about anyone. Yet ALLAH gives me people who care for me a lot.
I am put to shame by my own acts, by my own words but ALLAH never leaves me alone.
I transgress His limits yet He does not punish me.

They say mothers forgive every fault of yours.
They say fathers never say NO to your wishes.
They say your siblings are your ultimate friends.
They say your family never leaves you when you are in any trouble.
But I have seen mothers who don’t forgive, and I have seen fathers who do say “NO”.
And I have seen siblings who do not bother about you, and I have witnessed many families leaving their relatives alone at the time of need.

But I have never ever heard that ALLAH does not forgive, or He says “NO” to your duaas, now I know that there is only one best friend and that is ALLAH.

And I have found Him just the same, not a single wish He denies, not a single sin that he does not forgive, not a single moment that He leaves you alone, and yet I am His servant who disobeys Him!!

Ahh….what a grievous sinner I am and what a forgiving LORD, my ALLAH is!!
Ahh….what a hateful person I am and what a loving LORD, my ALLAH is!!
Ahh….what a poor soul I am and what a benevolent LORD, my ALLAH is!!
Ahh….O man you are indeed in a loss!!
Ahh….O man you are indeed transgressing your limits!!
Ahh….O man you are really ungrateful!!

Which then of the bounties of your Lord will you deny?
(Surah Ar Rahman 55:13)

[Courtesy: http://islamandpsychology.blogspot.com]

Come Back!

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By Umm ‘Aisha

Sometimes all of a sudden- life changes, from being blessed to being wretched, from being at the top of the world to becoming down-trodden. All of a sudden we start facing problems in every single aspect of our life, everything we try- we fail in it. Be it physical, spiritual, familial, social, economical, psychological- you name it.

All of a sudden we see people who once loved us- are now betraying, the business we were experts at- is severely challenged, the family which was a support- has left us on our own, the health we adored- is now worn-out, the beauty we owned- has departed, leaving us ugly. All of a sudden we- who were looked up by people are now looked down upon- ALL OF A SUDDEN?!

How come is it ‘all of a sudden’?!

We start questioning the purpose of us- being alive, as if we don’t deserve life anymore. We don’t find any aim to live up for; we lose our passions- and start drowning into the episodes of Depression- the insomnias- the low appetite- the lack of interest in all meaningful things; crying and blaming become our new personality and we end up becoming introverts.

The cycle goes on until we wake up! Wake up from the deceptive sleep, and try to find out the actual WHY!

After failing in all our efforts, tired of  always ending-up in nowhere, when all resources eventually back-out and we are in complete darkness of despair, we feel the Only open Door- that One Door which we have forgotten through-out our struggle. The Door we should have knocked in the beginning. And then we realize the truth of: There is no Might except with Al-Qadir, there is no way except with Al-Haadi, there is no comforter except The One who removes all the evil, there is no healer except Ash-Shaafi, there is no business and job except with Ar-Razzaq, and there is no love except with Al-Wadood.

And we find out the actual answer of our WHYS:

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And whoever turns away from My remembrance – indeed, he will have a depressed life, and We will gather him on the Day of Resurrection blind.” [20:124]

Isn’t this true? Isn’t it the ‘actual reason’? Isn’t it the correct answer to all our Whys?

Yes! It is.

But it doesn’t end here- it doesn’t increase the guilt and leaves us to commit suicide. It wasn’t because He s.w.t hates us, it wasn’t because He had disowned us when we went away from Him and it wasn’t because He had stopped loving us like the rest of the world. For He is our only Well-wisher and He explains the reason why we went into that depressive mode- why didn’t He help us out of our problems and why He wanted us to fall in all those pains-6_42

   

  And We have already sent (messengers) to nations before you, then We seized them with poverty and hardship that perhaps they might humble themselves (to Us). [6:42]

So now we know that all those hardships were to make us humble- to make us remember that only purpose for which we were created- to make us go back to the One we came from and to make us say:

إِنَّا لِلَّهِ وَإِنَّا إِلَيْهِ رَاجِعُونَ

Indeed we belong to Allah , and indeed to Him we will return. [2:156]

Lets then go back and repent- and cry- and feel ashamed on forgetting Him, on forgetting the purpose of our being and lets witness His Mercy again, lets enjoy His countless blessings once again and lets see how much He cares for us and how much He loves us. And also- lets not forget Him again. In sha ALLAH.

 اسْتَغْفِرُوا رَبَّكُمْ إِنَّهُ كَانَ غَفَّارًا                

يُرْسِلِ السَّمَاءَ عَلَيْكُم مِّدْرَارًا 

وَيُمْدِدْكُم بِأَمْوَالٍ وَبَنِينَ وَيَجْعَل لَّكُمْ جَنَّاتٍ وَيَجْعَل لَّكُمْ أَنْهَارًا

Ask forgiveness of your Lord. Indeed, He is ever a Perpetual Forgiver.

He will send [rain from] the sky upon you in [continuing] showers

And give you increase in wealth and children and provide for you gardens and provide for you rivers. [71:10-12]

And we shouldn’t worry thinking: if ALLAH will accept us back or not- for if we are alive and if our breaths are intact, He is waiting for our ‘come-back’, for our repentance and He is ready to welcome us with all His Rehmah and blessings.

O son of Adam, so long as you call upon Me and ask of Me, I shall forgive you for what you have done, and I shall not mind. O son of Adam, were your sins to reach the clouds of the sky and were you then to ask forgiveness of Me, I would forgive you. [Hadith Qudsi]

The Best Day: The Day I Meet You!

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By Umm ‘Aisha

I had been waiting impatiently for this day; I had been trying to make it the ‘most special day’ of my entire existence. It’s been quite long, when I was informed of the due day and I was firstly terrified of it as I did not have any idea of preparing “best” for it, but then by time help came from ALLAH and I started preparing for it. The preparation was tough and difficult but no difficulty would stop me from thinking best for the special occasion. “How would I look that day? Where would I stand that day? How would I be sitting that day? With whom I would be chatting? Would I smile, laugh or just keep quiet? Will all eyes be on me? Will my face be among the brightest faces that day? Will my parents be proud of me? Feeling honored because of me? What would my response be, when my name will be called from the pages that are going to decide my future? Will I shiver or just hope? —and then I would think and hope best for my future home: how beautiful it would be? What comforts will it provide me? What provisions will be waiting for me? How would it look? Who will accompany me over there? How large my dwellings would be? How much gardens would it have? And what fruits would be there? How many smiles and laughers would surround me? And the most beautiful thoughts among all these would be about my meeting with my Beloved, how beautiful His face would be? How joyous that moment of meeting would be? How lucky I would feel to have seen Him? What will He talk to me about? May be of what I have been doing for Him whole of my life and what would I say: “Nothing but by Your Mercy and Grace”? How elegant His smile would be? How precious and delightful time it would be?

These are not my dreams but my expectations from my Beloved. I have not prepared enough for the final and most important meeting, but I have packed some love, fear and hope to accompany me along with the ticket of Faith (Imaan) in Him.

Now they have dressed me up for the meeting at last, and are taking me to the train I have to travel on, in this pure white dress, now I await the sound of the Call—I am aware that this Day would be extremely difficult but I await His Mercy (Rehmah), that is much more than His wrath.

Oh Allah, Bless me with a ticket from دار الغرور to دار السرور and save me from دار الشرور.

Oh Allah, make the best part of my life the last part, the best deed the last deed and the best day in which I meet You.

[Courtesy: http://islamandpsychology.blogspot.com]

A Tale Of Beauty…

 

By Bint Salman

make up itemsAppearances Are Deceptive:

She elegantly walked with her low-cut gown and long bare legs on the red-carpet. The glitter on her visage shone brilliantly as she threw smiles at the audience waving her hand up in the air. The golden crown on her head was her dream that had come true. Amidst the glamour and celebration, she felt her heart slowly sinking in, the vacuum in her getting larger, and happiness culminating in a strong wave of anxiety. Is that all she got after a long wait? she got everything she ever desired then WHY?…why is life so hollow and incomplete?

Tears trickled down her cheeks, she was lost but she couldn’t figure out why!

Days later she committed suicide..

The term beauty is quite flexible; everyone seems to have his own way of defining it. The beauty pageants organized every year may arrive at their tough decision of identifying the most beautiful girl from across the globe and crowning her for her ravishing outward appearance. But this is just a trivial matter of something which is apparent; the looks. What lies beyond those looks? A hidden horrible adulteress, cabinet filled with anti-depressants, tentative cuts around the wrist due to suicidal attempts, a state of constant unrest  and apathy? For sure we don’t know. The fashion and beauty industry are muti million dollar industries, smartly exploiting women.Woman want to be in the rat race by either providing their services as  fashion/beauty icons or by proving as the potential customers of designers from Haute Couture.

The tale of beauty and glamour which is so well-known today is nothing but an epic delusion; it’s so hollow and superficial.Instead of being influenced by it, you should relish walking in your own beauty that shines from your faith and obedience to the Creator.

Am I Really Beautiful?!

You should not consider anyone as a standard of beauty such as a certain celebrity or super-model. Do not compare your looks to those around, in this way you just end up hurting yourself more by feeling more dissatisfied about the shape of your nose, skin complexion, hair color or whatever it is. There is a huge diversity in the creation of Allah; each one of us is different and unique. The comparison only leads to jealousy, envy, frustration and disappointment. You can make the most of your capabilities, talents and excel in something you have passion for instead of wasting time in such comparisons which grieve you.

Whoever told you that you are ugly is either ignorant or heedless of the fact that Al-Kha’aliq: The Creator and Al-Mussawir: The Fashioner has created all of us in the best of form. In His Creation is the epitome of perfection. Allah says:

‘Verily,we Created man in the best form’ (Surah At-Teen – Ayah 4). 

In surah Taghabun Allah says:

“He created the heavens and earth in truth and formed you and perfected your forms; and to Him is the [final] destination.” (Taghābun, 64:3)

Though He confers upon some certain blessings and keeps others from having those to test all. So we find some people indulging in disobedience of Allah through those blessings, thereby failing the test while others who are deprived of those blessings showing impatience and discontent also failing the test. The essential requirement of passing the test is profession of satisfaction and gratitude in heart and declaring: Alhumdulillah!

So, you have now a strong reason to be happy, bold and pleased with the way you naturally look even when you don’t have your make-up or lenses on.

Beauty Lies in the Eyes of Beholder:

Every person has his own way of grading looks, for some a heart-shaped face is more adorable, while others find a slightly long face with sharp features more exotic. In truth the eye is pleased with what the heart approves!

The fear of rejection and denial should not be fostered as it damages ones confidence, self-esteem and self-worth. There is a motivation factor for all those sisters who believe that they aren’t beautiful in the fact that ‘it is strength of conviction, good character, modesty and steadfastness which renders an everlasting and profound beauty. These were the qualities which adorned the most beautiful women who made history. Do we know any precise details of their shapes and curves? It’s only the details of their courage and the way they spent their lives in accordance to their conviction and relationship with Allah that adorned the pages of those books, and that every time we read about them we are taken by awe and get remarkably inspired arriving at a sensible conclusion that these were truly the most beautiful women that ever existed on the face of this planet.

Any woman who emulates these perfect role-models succeeds in becoming the most beloved in the sight of her Creator. After all, what more does a sincere believer desire than to be the best in the sight of the one she/he loves the most?. This thought itself is so empowering and brings multiple benefits:

-As a Muslimah fixes herself for her Creator and makes His pleasure and His love her ultimate goal in life she feels the deep void within her gradually filling up, completing her soul.

-As she finds her true purpose in life , the discovery opens doors of happiness and success in her life.She lives by the goal of spending her life in serviude to Allah, fills her heart with the love of her Master to a point that worldly attachments get minuscule and vague.

-She doesn’t crave for any na-mahram’s attention or compliments on her looks. She keeps herself from flaunting her beauty in front of those who try to take advantage of it by crowning herself with obedience of Allah through Hijaab. Her beauty keeps growing under the protection of this modest covering exactly the way a pearl is furnished with luster inside the covering of an oyster deep down in oceans and seas.

-She focuses more on beautifying her inner which doesn’t age, wrinkle or wither by time but will make her scales go down by it’s weight on the day of judgment.

Narrated by Abu Darda: The Prophet, peace be upon him, said: “There is nothing heavier upon the scale of a believer (on the Day of Judgment) than good character.”

Therefore, if you imitate actresses or super-models, you will never be able to achieve happiness and confidence, so discover yourself and  be yourself.

The man who truly fears Allah values a fore mentioned traits in a woman and finds her beautiful irrespective of whether she has an ideal figure, height and complexion or not. So don’t worry he will love you for the way you are ( but that doesn’t mean I don’t encourage women to groom themselves and make an effort to look good for their husband, ofcourse they should within the bounds of sharia)

”O Allah! as you have Created my External Beautiful, Beautify my Character (inner) as well.”

Out of Love!

By Umm ‘Aisha

I see them screaming at their old parents out of their love for them! I see them scolding their children out of their love for them! I see them blaming and pointing their sarcasm at their spouses out of their love for them! I see them arguing with everyone out of their love for Deen! I see their brutality for their students out of their love for knowledge! I see them fighting and punching their siblings faces out of their love for them! And I see them dissociating from their friends out of their love for them! I see broken families that were built only in the name of love, and I see psychologically disturbed children who are the ‘victim’ of their parents’ love!

And all this forces me to think “If they really LOVE them? Is this what love is all about? Is love only the matter of one’s heart and not one’s attitude? Is love only providing the basic necessities of life to your beloved? Is love so cruel? Is love something that abuses relations? Or is it just that THEY ARE ABUSING LOVE?

I would have started doubting myself whether I should claim this grievous sin of loving someone and then proving it through my actions if I had not known The Most Loving! The One who loves all that we see around us, the One who calls all His creations “His family”. Though nothing could be as Mighty as Him and nothing could be as Supreme as Him. Though He does not need to be loved, though He is not dependent on any one of His creatures, though He is not in need of their time, money, presence, children, wealth or anything!

But He still loves them and expects that they respect and love each other.

He- The Most Loving doesn’t even ignore those who disobey His merciful commandments, neither those who declare themselves as His enemy. He-Ar-Rahman- blesses them with all the luxuries of this world.

And here we-those who are selected by ALLAH as HIS Deen’s messengers, the messengers of His love for people the carriers of “There is no God but ALLAH” have a different definition and practical implementation of Love!

The feeling created by God, for God, to God!

When I talk about love as a gift from the Loving, I imagine it something that is totally different of what world has described it through its actions. It is something that is filled with ‘your’ respect, ‘your’ honor, sacrifice for ‘you’, peace between ‘us’, happiness among ‘everyone’, harmony in ‘people’, tolerance for ‘you’. Something that is free from selfishness and the concept of ‘my’ rights, ‘my’ position, ‘my’ value, ‘my’ worth. Something that doesn’t loose its value even when surrounded by the worst feelings of lust, jealousy, hatred and fear. Something that stays pure even if the world around is filthy. Something that unites people, and something that consoles broken hearts. And eventually it has to be something that makes this world a better place to live!

So when I tell you that “I LOVE YOU”, it means I- a slave of Most Beneficent- am ready to sacrifice for you, I- a slave of As-Salam- wish for peace in your life, I- a slave of Al-Wadood- am ready to give you unconditional love, I- a slave of As- Samii’- am there to listen you, I- a slave of AL-Hadi- want to guide your ways whenever you are lost and most of all I– a slave of Al-Moez, respect you for what you are.

This definition of Love can only be possible if the rules of Divine are truly loved, followed and implemented in ‘My’ life! 🙂