To worship and obey the commandments of Allah Ta’ala is Noor and to disobey Him and commit sin constitutes darkness. Hence, should a person wish that his heart conceives contentment and his face manifests beauty and noor, then together with good deeds he needs to stay away from minor and major sins. In order to retain a refreshing composure of glowing light on the face, one needs to abstain from sin.
In many instances people tend to urge forward in doing optional Ibadat disregarding the abstinence of sins. This results in the loss of spiritual strength. Those who persist in continuously committing sins will not obtain the friendship and nearness to Allah. It is always the desire and urge of a Mu’min to acquire Taqwa through the obedience of Allah Ta’ala and following the Mubarak Sunnah of Nabi [Sallallahu Alaiyhi Wa Sallam]. Good deeds [A’amal – e – Saalihah] are the most powerful conductors in attaining the bond of Taqwa.
“Oh you who believe! Intoxicants and gambling and Al Ansaab (animals sacrificed for idols) and Al Azlaam (arrows for seeking luck) are an abomination of Shaytaan’s handiwork, so avoid that in order that you may be successful.”
“Shaytaan wants only to excite enmity and hatred between you with intoxicants and gambling, and hinder you from the remembrance of Allah and from salaah. So will you not then abstain?” [Surah Al Maa’idah, 90/91]
From all the creations of Allah Ta’ala, human beings are a distinctive and selected creation. In addition, humans have been given the gift of an exceptional quality of intelligence and understanding which no other creation possesses. Through this intelligence, man is able to fly an aeroplane, design space shuttles, reach the moon, invent technologies that are mind-boggling and so on; all of which no other creation can even attempt.
While this intelligence has achieved so much and reached such great heights, on the other hand, the drinking of alcohol befuddles the mind and the intellectual senses become intoxicated. As a result, an intoxicated person is tempted to do anything, to the extent of sleeping with his own mother (may Allah protect us)! Alcohol devours the mind and influences a person to behave in a manner lower than an animal. When the senses become uncontrollable, then there is no distinction as to who is his father, mother, wife or children and he becomes a shameless and disgraceful person.
Shaytaan is the most avid enemy of man, and has enough capabilities and powerful ammunition to fight mankind. His shrewdness to use alcohol as a means of destroying man is very clever, because he knows that in order to cause someone to sin, alcohol has probably the strongest potential, since the mind goes blank and becomes receptive to any evil.
The Noble Qur’an and Ahadith have severely condemned the consumption of alcohol. Nabi (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) has declared it as “Ummul Khabaais”, literally translated as “Mother of Evils”. The evil of other sins has not been spoken about as vigorously as of alcohol, in terms of the number of times it has been mentioned in the Ahadith. In citing one example, while to drink urine is haraam, it would not intoxicate and disorientate the mind, unlike in the case of alcohol. Alcohol causes the aql (intelligence) to cease to operate in a human and to think in a sensible fashion; in fact it clouds the mind from thinking correctly and therefore opens the doors of evil and sin.
Among a whole list of sins, alcohol is regarded as the worst. The hadith refers to it as “Ummul Fawaahish” – “Mother of all Shame”. It is a root cause of zina and shamelessness. A person in such a state cannot really differentiate between right and wrong.
In one narration, Ibn Abbas (RA) reports to have heard Nabi (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) saying that alcohol is Ummul Fawaahish and Akbarul Kabaair (biggest sin), and whoever drinks it is liable to commit sin with his mother, his mother’s sister and his father’s sister. [Targheeb]
EFFECTS LASTING FORTY DAYS
Alcohol is contaminated with filth and haraam. It is a lethal drink for the mu’min that has a direct bearing on a person’s spiritual life. It is estimated that for forty days the effect remains in the body and as a result, for that many days his tauba will not be accepted, nor will any good deed be accepted. As long as the effects and traces remain in the body, his condition will remain the same. And should his condition not change from the traces and he dies before that, then (Allah forbid), it will be considered as dying in the days of Jahiliyyah.
A THOUGHT-PROVOKING STORY
During the time of the Bani Israeel there lived a man who was always engaged in worship. He kept himself aloof from the rest of the people. A woman took a liking to this man and thought of a plan to seduce him to her place. She sent her servant inviting the man to witness some event. Innocently the man accepted, and as he entered the woman’s quarters, the door closed behind him and seated before him was a very handsome young boy and this woman. The woman then presented three options to him, asking him to choose any one:
Kill this young boy.
Fulfill the woman’s sexual desire.
Drink the glass of wine.
Should he not choose any one, then the woman warned him that she will disgrace him in public. The poor man froze to death; his mind running through the three options, thinking that murder is definitely out and committing adultery is also out. He opted for the third one, thinking that it’s the least sinful of the three. As he began drinking the alcohol, his ibaadah, taqwa and piety suddenly disappeared, and in that state of intoxication, he committed murder by killing the boy, as well as committed adultery with the woman.
This story shows the evil strength of drinking alcohol; the mind is transformed into a mindless state. It is at this point that the person cannot think, cannot differentiate between right and wrong and loses himself completely.
Safeguarding the Tongue
Translated by Moulana M. Mahomedy.
1. Do not speak without thinking. Once you have pondered over what you wish to say and you are convinced that it will not be badly received, only then should you speak.
2. It is a sin to address a person or speak of him in the following terms: "he has no Imaan", "may Allah's punishment, curse, or anger descend on him", "may he enter hell", etc. It is a sin to speak in this manner irrespective whether one is addressing a human or an animal. If the person who has been addressed in this manner does not deserve such remarks, then all these curses will actully descend on the person who uttered them.
3. If anyone addresses you in this useless manner, you have the right to reply in the same way. However, you cannot exceed what that person says. If you exceed, you will be committing a sin.
4. Do not be two-faced whereby you "play according to the tune" of one person when you are in his company, and according to the "tune" of another person when in the latter's company.
5. Don't ever back-bite. Nor should you listen to such back-biting and tale-bearing.
6. Never ever speak a lie.
7. Do not praise a person directly. Nor should you exaggerate in praising him in his absence.
8. Don't ever involve yourself in gheebah. Gheebah means speaking in the absence of a person in such a way that if he were to hear it, he would be grieved. This is irrespective of whether what you say is the truth or not. If what you say is false, it is regarded as slander or defamation. This is even more sinful.
9. Do not argue with a person. Do not try to give precedence to your opinion.
10. Do not laugh excessively as this causes the illumination of the heart (and countenance) to disappear.
11. If you have made gheebah of a person, seek his forgiveness. If you are unable to do so, make dua-e-maghfirah on his behalf. In doing this, there is a hope that you will be forgiven on the day of judgement.
12. Do not make false promises.
13. Do not laugh in such a way that the other person feels insulted or offended. (In other words, do not laugh mockingly at anyone)
14. Do not be boastful of something that you own or some quality that you possess.
15. Do not mention things that you hear from here and there because the majority of such rumours are false.
AnswerAnswer by Sanha - Many thanks for contacting our offices for religious directive pertaining to sourcing Halaal Food for your guests. We advise as follows:
A Halaal meal entails that the entire process from procurement of all raw materials, meats, preparation, ingredients, processing, handling, equipment used, etc. right through to delivery and serving should be stringently supervised by an authorised Muslim person.
In your given circumstances, we suggest that arrangements be made with one of our certified caterers who will provide the Halaal meals, snack platters etc. Kindly contact our offices and we shall put you onto a Halaal certified caterer closest to your area.
Alternatively, you may serve them with Fish seafood, vegetables, rice and/or lentils. You may use plain filleted fish but not the ready made crumbed and seasoned ones unless it is from I & J which are all Halaal.
Use plain spices and herbs in the preparation and only pure unused vegetable oil, olive oil or pure butter.
Do not prepare, handle, store or serve any meat products, alcohol etc with this Halaal meal. Ensure that new utensils are used if available or alternatively thoroughly wash, cleanse and sanitise all utensils, crockery, cutlery etc before using for preparation and serving of the Halaal meal.
You may serve tea, coffee, 100% fresh juice with the meal. Wine and all forms of alcohol is totally forbidden. Do not serve alcohol even for your non-Muslim guests on this occasion.
If any further clarity is required, please do not hesitate to contact us.
IMPORTANCE OF SALAAH
- Salaah is a pillar of the Deen.
Like a building is supported by a pillar, likewise Salaah is the supporting pillar of a person’s deen. Hence, should the person discard Salaah, he has collapsed a pillar of deen.
- Salaah will be first (among the ibadaat) to be accounted for on the Day of Qiyamah.
Should the Salaah of the person be acceptable, then all other deeds shall be fine. However, should the Salaah not be acceptable, then the rest of the deeds would have defects.
- Salaah is the best and most virtuous deed in the Court of Allah Ta’ala.
It offers support towards other worships.
- Salaah is noor (light).
Through Salaah, one is exposed to a special light and in the hereafter, when all will be dark, Salaah will facilitate noor, insha Allah.
- Salaah removes sin like how dry leaves fall off the tree in the winter season.
It can be deduced from this that performing Salaah plays a very big part in the forgiveness of a person’s sins.
CROWNING GLORY OF SALAAH
Allah Ta’ala says in the Noble Qur’an in Surah Al Ankaboot,
“Indeed Salaah dispels shameful and sinful actions”
When a Mu’min stands before Allah in Salaah, his heart is engaged through the eyes of his heart, that, Allah is before him and watching every movement – even what is in the heart. When this inspiration is strongly embedded in the course of Salaah, then the same fusion would be applied outside Salaah. The concept of Allah knowing and seeing all the time will become a true reality. Hence, regular performance of Salaah inspires one to continue in other worships and protects one from sinning.
SEVERE WARNING FOR NEGLECTING SALAAH
Salaah is obligatory on every mature Muslim, male or female, young or old, healthy or sick, resident or musaafir – literally there is no excuse.
Omitting Salaah is indeed a very serious sin and some of the following ahadith express the severity and warning:
Ø Salaah distinguishes Mu’min from a Kaafir. Leaving Salaah leaves a person on the brink of kufr.
Ø That person who deliberately omits Salaah may be regarded as a Kaafir, i.e. he has reached very close to kufr.
Ø He who leaves Salaah has no part to play in Islam, i.e. he is deprived of exposing his Muslim identity.
Ø He who is unmindful of his Salaah will rise up with the worst of people, i.e. Qarun, Fir’aun, Hamaan and Ubay ibn Khalaf.
Ø He who’s one Salaah was missed; it is like all his wealth and family have been destroyed.
SALAAH WITH JAMA’AH
Shari’ah has compelled men to perform Salaah in the masjid with congregation. Those who ignore this instruction come under the spotlight of this hadith, where Nabi (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said, “Whomsoever hears the azaan and then, without any legitimate reason does not attend Salaah with jama’ah, then (read it individually) it is as if he did not perform it at all.” [Ibn Majah]
In another hadith, Nabi (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) severely reprimanded to burn those homes where the men folk refused to come to the masjid for congregational prayers.
Every effort must be made to perform Salaah with jama’ah. The reward of Salaah with jama’ah is twenty seven times greater.
The Niqaab (Veil)
The laws of the Shariah are meant to protect the chastity and purity of the Muslims. Likewise the purpose of the niqaab is to protect the Muslim woman from the poisonous arrows of Shaitaan - the lustful gazes of all and sundry. Hence we find that in the pure and noble society of the Sahaaba (R.A.), the women regarded exposing their faces as being immodest .
Hazrath Qais bin Shammas (R.A.) reports that a woman came to Rasulullah (Sallallahu-Alaihi-Wasallam) to enquire about her son who had just been martyred in a battle. She had come wearing a veil over her face. Observing this a person exclaimed: "You have come to enquire about your martyred son, yet you are veiled?" (ie. despite your extreme grief, you have maintained your composure to such an extent that you have also kept your face covered as always). Hazrath Umme Khallad (R.A.) replied: "I have lost my son, but I have not lost my modesty" (ie. if I have been plunged into grief due to the loss of my son, must I also lose my shame and modesty and bring upon myself another calamity?). (Abu Dawood)
From the above one can clearly understand the importance accorded to the covering of the face by the women of that pure era. Umme Khallad (R.A.) actually equated the uncovering of her face with the loss of shame and modesty.
It was the constant practice of all the women of that era to wear veils. They had adopted this practice eversince the following verse regarding hijaab was revealed wherein Allah Ta'ala says:
"O Messenger, tell your wives and daughters as well as all the other believing women that they should cast over themselves their outer garments (when in public)...".
Hence in the state of Ihraam (when performing Haj or Umrah), the women had to be specifically told not to wear veils since any cloth or garment should not touch their faces while they are in the condition of Ihraam. Hazrath ibn Umar(R.A.) reports that Rasulullah (Sallallahu-Alaihi-Wasallam) used to prevent the women from wearing the niqaab (veil) or gloves in the state of Ihraam. (Abu Dawood) However, this prohibition does not mean that the face may be exposed to strangers in this state. This is understood from the narration of Aisha (R.A.) wherein she says: "Once we were in the state of Ihraam with Rasulullah (Sallallahu-Alaihi-Wasallam). Whenever any rider would pass by us, we would cover our faces by lowering our "garments" (referring to the head covering). After they had gone past us, we would once again uncover our faces." (Mishkaat)
Thus it is evident that the niqaab has its roots in the Quran and Hadith.It is likewise absolutely evident that the pure and chaste women of the time of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) and the Sahaaba (R.A.) always donned the veil. It is only the plot of the enemies of Allah and His beloved Messenger (Sallallahu-Alaihi-Wasallam) who wish to tear down this veil in an attempt to eventually tear away the chastity of Muslim women. Indeed, those who wish to gratify their nafs by gazing at women would necessarily have to remove the veils of these women to achieve their purpose.
However, the following Hadith is food for thought, not only for men but for women as well. Rasulullah (Sallallahu-Alaihi-Wasallam) is reported to have said; "Allah Ta'ala has cursed the naazir (one who looks at ghair mahram women- those with whom Nikaah is permitted) as well as the manzoor ilayha (that woman who does not properly conceal and veil herself, thereby making it possible for others to see her). (Mishkaat).
May Allah Ta'ala remove the veil that has fallen upon our intellect so that we may realise the importance of the veil on the faces of women. Aameen.
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