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Guest Impressions

Mufti Zubair Bayat

Adoption and Fostering of children
from an Islamic perspective

The Holy Messenger Muhammad (may peace be upon him), the prophet of Islam, himself was an orphan at birth. He was adopted as an orphan and placed in the foster care of his wet-nurse Halimah who nurtured him with tender care and love, more than she displayed towards her own children. In light of this historical fact, Muslims are no strangers to the concept of adoption and foster care. In fact, they have before them lofty examples of these practices right from the life of the holy Messenger himself.

Having been brought up as an orphan himself, placed the Holy Messenger in a position where he was able to naturally and instinctively identify with the plight of orphan children more than others. His teachings are therefore replete with teachings and directives towards the orphan, of treating them with utmost kindness and compassion. The list of such teachings is lengthy and enumerating them in this brief article would be inappropriate. It is sufficient to quote but one saying of his: 'The home wherein the orphan is ill-treated is the worst home on earth.'

In the time of the Holy Messenger, there was hardly a home which had not taken in and adopted an orphan child. This was a normal practice in the society of his companions.

Muslims should, by virtue of the lofty example and teachings of the Holy Messenger, be in the very frontline in efforts to secure the adoption and fostering of 'abandoned' children. In fact they aught to be setting the trend for the rest of society in this matter. At the least, it is expected of them to co-operate closely with groups and bodies that are promoting these efforts.

Due to the high standards of morality and conduct required of Muslims by their religious laws, Muslim homes and families are ideally positioned to imbue and impart these exalted values to adopted children – values that will be of life long consequence to them.

A word of caution to prospective adoption families though; the humanitarian and noble practice of adopting children should never be motivated by material or pecuniary interests or intentions at all. This will destroy and demolish the very spirit of this gracious deed, leaving it as a lifeless corpse.

I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate Mr.H.Bham on his launching of the periodical "Faiz" on issues relating to adoption and fostering of children. It gives me pleasure to write an article upon his request on this subject from the Islamic perspective for this 'maiden' issue of this brand new magazine. May this publication continue to enlighten the community for many years ahead.

Mufti Zubair Bayat

A Shameless Practice

DIVULGING BEDROOM SECRETS

A shameless and disgraceful trend observed nowadays among some of our Muslim brothers and even Muslim sisters, is the practice of discussing intimate bedroom and sexual secrets with friends and acquaintances. Some times, these discussions take place in the presence of even relative strangers without a care in the world. Such is the handiwork of shaytaan that at times, ostensibly learned, pious and somewhat respectable people tend to do this.

This type of dirty conversation takes place when people are idle and engaged in futile pursuits. Having nothing better to do, they engage in dirty talk, giving a reflection of what lurks inside of them. These talks normally take place at clubhouses, during fishing and camping trips, card-playing sessions, billiard and pool games, golfing sessions, on journeys, etc. People relate with relish the finer details of their private doings, sometimes in a very boastful manner, before others. Some times, a person describes the delicate parts of his wife's anatomy before others in such a crude and revealing manner, he figuratively 'strips' her before others. In this way they are actually able to 'see' his wife with the mind's eye.

These dirty ways are the net outcome of the accumulated filth of the west's shameless culture that has found its way in the life and homes of Muslims. The heavy deluge of pornographic material in the form of blue movies, steamy videos, raunchy magazines and novels, and now, internet-based pornography in the life of Muslims has contributed towards these shameless practices. May Allah cleanse all Muslims of this spiritual rot and moral muck.

This type of immodest practice has no place in Islam. There is no room for such dirty ways in a religion that preaches modesty and purity in every facet of life. Imaan is the very epitome of haya (modesty). "lmaan is modesty through and through" - Hadith. When modesty departs from the life of a person, it is feared that Imaan will follow shortly, Allah forbid! Muslims need to protect and promote the culture of modesty at all times in order to safeguard their Imaan. Such unsavoury practices are the very anti-thesis of modesty and shame.

There can be a terrible outcome to this. People listening to this graphic description become attracted towards the woman being described, sometimes with a bit of exaggeration. They may not be experiencing the same sexual gratification in their own lives, so greed and lust gets the better of them. A pass is made at the woman, which is some times successful (sic). One thing leads to another and finally the marriage is ruined, resulting in endless misery, heartache, disgrace and sin for all involved. Allah protect!

The following Hadith ought to act as a strong warning and a deterrent to those guilty of this. Hazrat Abu Saeed (radiyallahu-anhu) reports that Nabi (sallallahu-alayhi-wasallam) said: "The worst person in the eyes of Allah on the Day of Qiyamah is that couple who have an intimate relation with each other and the man then reveals the (bedroom) secrets to others" -Muslim Shareef

Masjid-ul-Aqsa: Its virtues and significance

Masjid ul Aqsa is:

  • The first Qiblah of the Muslims

  • The station of Isra and Miraj

  • The second house of Allah Ta'ala built on earth

  • The place where hundreds of Messengers of Allah Ta'alaare buried

  • The place where many Companions (RA) are buried

  • The place where miracles were shown by Allah Ta'ala's Will

  • A place which Allah Ta'ala himself calls a 'blessed place'

  • Referred to directly and indirectly, seventy times in the Noble Quran

  • The place where angels have descended with Allah Ta'ala's message

  • The only place on earth where all the Messengers of Allah prayed at the same time, led by the Prophet Muhammad (SAW)

  • The only Masjid mentioned by name in the Noble Quran, apart from the Kabah

Musjid ul Aqsa- The second house of Allah:

Abu Dhar (RA) reported that he asked the Prophet (SAW)

“O Prophet of Allah (SAW), Which Masjid was built 1st on earth”?

The Prophet (SAW) replied, “The Sacred Masjid of Makkah”.

Abu Dhar (RA) again asked, “Which was next” ?

The Prophet (SAW) said, “The Masjid Aqsa”.

Abu Dharr (RA) further asked “How long was the period between the building of two Masajid ”?

The Prophet (SAW) said, “40 years. Apart from these, offer your prayers anywhere when it is time to pray, although excellence is in praying in these Masajid”.

Sahih al Bukhari

 

The importance of visiting Masjid al-Aqsa:

Abu Hurairah (RA)relates that the Prophet (SAW)said,

“You should not undertake a special journey to visit any place other than the following three Masajid, with the expectation of getting greater reward : the Sacred Masjid of Makkah, this Musjid of mine (SAW), and Masjid al-Aqsa (of Jerusalem)”.

In another narration the words are, “For three Masajid, a special journey may be undertaken: The Sacred Masjid (Ka'bah), my Masjid (SAW), and the Masjid of al-Quds (Jerusalem)”.

 

Sahih al Bukhari, Sahih Muslim, and Sunan Abu Dawd

Greater virtue of praying in Masjid al-Aqsa:

Anas ibn Malik (RA) relates that the Prophet (SAW)said,

“The prayer of a person in his house is a single prayer; his prayer in the masjid of his tribe has the reward of 25 prayers; his prayer in the Masjid in which the Friday prayer is observed has the reward of 500; his prayer in Masjid al-Aqsa (i.e al-Aqsa Sanctuary) has a reward of 5,000 prayers; his prayer in my Masjid (SAW)(Madinah) has a reward of 50,000 prayers; and the prayer in the Sacred Masjid (Ka'bah) at Makkah has a reward of 100,000 prayers”.

 

Tirmidhi and Ibn Majah

The importance of donating to Masjid al-Aqsa:

Abdullah ibn Umar (RA) relates, I asked the Prophet (SAW),“Apostle of Allah, tell us the legal injunction about (visiting) Bayt al-Maqdis (Jerusalem).”

The Apostle of Allah (SAW)said, “Go and pray there. If you cannot visit it and pray there,then send some oil to be used in the lamps”. Sahih al Bukhari

 

The virtues of wearing Ihram from Masjid al-Aqsa:

Umm al-Mu'minin, Umm Salmah (RA), relates that the Prophet (SAW) said,

“If anyone puts ihram for Haj or Umrah from Masjid al-Aqsa and then proceeds to the sacred Masjid, his former and latter sins will be forgiven or he will be guaranteed Paradise”.

The narrator Abdullah (RA) was not certain which of these words were said

Sunan Abu Dawud

The blessed land of Masjid al-Aqsa:

Zaid ibn Thabit (RA) reports that the Prophet (SAW) said,

“How blessed is Sham”!

The companions (RA) around asked: “Why is that”?

The Messenger (SAW) replied, “I see the angels of Allah Ta'ala spreading their wings over Sham”.

Ibn Abbas (RA) added. “And the Prophets of Allah (AS) lived there. There is not a single inch in al-Quds (Jerusalem) where a prophet (AS)has not prayed or an angel not stood”. 

Tirmidhi and Imaam Ahmed

Masjid al-Aqsa – The 1st Qibla:

Abdullah ibn Umar (RA) narrates, “We prayed with the Prophet (SAW)facing 

al-Quds (Jerusalem) for sixteen or seventeen months. Then Allah Ta'alaordered him to turn his face towards the Ka'bah (in Makkah)”. 

Sahih al Bukhari,

Masjid al-Aqsa – The place for major events near Qiyamah:

1. Mujamma ibn al-Harith (RA)narrates that the Prophet (SAW)said,

“Ibn Maryam (Isa) (AS) will kill Dajjal (the Anti-Christ) at the door of Ludd (a town in Palestine)”.

Tirmidhi and Imaam Ahmed

2. Nahik ibn Suraym al-Sakuni (RA) relates that the Prophet (SAW)said,

“You will fight the Pagans until the remnant of you fights on the River Jordan, you to the east of it (present day Jordan) and they to the west of it (occupied Palestine)”.

Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani

3. Maymunah bint Sa'ad (RA) reports that she asked the Prophet (SAW) ,

“Oh Messenger of Allah (SAW), give us a pronouncement about al-Quds (Jerusalem)”.

The Prophet (SAW) replied, “It is the land were they (mankind) will be raised (Hashar) and gathered (Mahshar)”.

Imaam Ahmed and al-Tabarani

4. The Messenger of Allah (SAW) stated regarding the inhabitants of the blessed land,

“they and their wives, children, and slaves (men and women) are in Ribat (guardians,literally a fort) in the cause of Allah Ta'ala”.. Al-Tabrani

Masjid al-Aqsa – The place of Mujahidin:


  1. Ummamah al-Bahil (RA)reports that the Prophet (SAW)said,


“A group of my community will remain on truth,they will vanquish their enemy and those with them will not be able to harm them until Allah Ta'ala commands”.

“Where are these people”? The companions (RA) asked.

The Prophet (SAW)replied, “In and around al-Quds (Jerusalem)”. 

Immam Ahmed


  1. Muawiyah ibn Abi Sufyan (RA)relates that the Prophet (SAW) said,

“There is a group among my followers who will continue to be openly on the truth. No one who opposes them will harm them, until the coming of the Hour”.

The companions (RA) asked, “Where will they be”?

The Prophet (SAW) replied, “ They will be in and around Bayt al-Maqdis”.

Immam Ahmed


  1. Abu Hurairah (RA)relates that the Prophet (SAW)said, 

“A group of my community will not cease to fight at the gates of Damascus and at the gates of al-Quds (Jerusalem) and its surroundings. The betrayal of whoever deserts them will not harm them in the least. They will remain victorious,standing for truth, until the Final Hour rises”.

Al-Tabrani

Masjid al-Aqsa – The best place of residence:


Abdullah ibn Umar (RA) reports that the Prophet (SAW)said,

“There will be migration upon migration. The best of the inhabitants of the earth will reside where Prophet Ibrahim (AS) migrated ( ie. Jerusalem)”.

Sunan Abu Dawud

Masjid al-Aqsa – Liberation of Masjid al-Aqsa Prophesied:


Shaddad ibn Aws (RA) reports that the Prophet (SAW) said,

“Al-Sham will be conquered and al-Quds (Jerusalem) will be conquered and you or your sons will be Imaams there, if Allah Ta'alawills”.

Al-Tabrani

Masjid al-Aqsa – The site for the future Caliphate:

Abdullah ibn Hawwala al Azdi (RA)reported, 

The Prophet (SAW)put his hand on my head and said, “ Ibn Hawwala (RA), if you see that the Caliphate has taken abode in the Holy Land, then earthquakes, tribulations and great events are at hand. The last hour on that day will be closer to people than my hand is to your head”.

Imaam Ahmed and Sunan Abu Dawud


Abd al-Rahman ibn abi Umayra al-Muzani (RA) reports that the Prophet (SAW) said,

“There will be an oath of allegiance according to guidance in al-Quds (Jerusalem)”.

Sahih al Bukhari and Sahih Muslim

Masjid al-Aqsa – Mention by name in the Holy Qur'an:


A'isha (RA)reports that the Prophet (SAW)used to recite Surah Isra every night in his prayer


سُبْحَانَ الَّذِي أَسْرَى بِعَبْدِهِ لَيْلًا مِنَ الْمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ إِلَى الْمَسْجِدِ الْأَقْصَى الَّذِي بَارَكْنَا حَوْلَهُ لِنُرِيَهُ مِنْ آَيَاتِنَا إِنَّهُ هُوَ السَّمِيعُ الْبَصِيرُ


 

Glory be to Allah, who did take his servant on a journey by night, from the Sacred Masjid

(in Makkah) to the Masjid of al-Aqsa (in Jerusalem), whose precincts we did bless, that we may show him some of Our signs. Indeed He alone is All-Hearing, All-Seeing.

 

Tirmidhi, Nasai, Ibn Hanbal

The Black Clouds of Fitnah are Closing in upon us
- by Mufti Zubair Bayat

The teachings of Nabi (sallallahu-alayhi-wasallam) were comprehensive in every respect. Not only did he teach about the past and present, but also about the future. So accurate and precise were his sayings regarding the future, that year for year and day for day, we see so many of his words coming true right before our very eyes. Many predictions have already occurred, and many are still to come. But just as we expect the sun to rise tomorrow morning, nay, even more, should be our conviction regarding the rest of his future predictions.

Among the major predictions of Nabi (sallallahu-alayhi-wasallam) was the appearance and prevalence of fitnahs that will afflict mankind. Certain Sahabah (RA), such as Hazrat Huzaifah (RA) specialised in this subject, and had such vast knowledge of this subject, that at times he would say, if I had to mention certain things, this throat (pointing to his throat) would be slit.

EXAMPLES OF FITNAH
Fitnahs have been explained by way of two examples in the Hadith. One example is like that of rain, “Fitnahs shall fall upon your homes like the falling of rain.” Another example given is like that of a black night, “There shall be fitnahs like a part of a black night …” In these examples, the salient aspect mentioned of fitnah is the all- pervasiveness of its nature, that none shall escape it but a few, just as it is difficult to escape the rain. Furthermore, it will be dark and black in colour, indicating to its ominous nature and the inability to see ones way through it like a person groping in the dark, which is what happens to most people during the era of fitnah.

WHAT IS FITNAH
Fitnah is an Arabic word, which literally refers to the smelting of gold ingots and removing the impurities from it, i.e. separating the good from the bad. This is what happens during a fitnah, the good is separated from the bad. So in this sense, it refers to a test, or event, or a crisis or calamity, that shows the result openly as to who is good and who is not, who succeeds and who shall fail.

TYPES OF FITNAH
There are a variety of fitnahs facing the Ummah. Among the greatests of fitnahs is that of Irtitaad or apostasy, where many who were born Muslim are turning away from Imaan, knowingly or unknowingly. This is predicted as a great fitnah in the very Hadith that enlikens fitnah to a black night, “…. a man will be a Mumin in the morning and a Kaafir (disbeliever) by the evening, and a Mumin in the evening and a Kaafir in the morning.” These days, the instance of people uttering outright statements of kufr is increasing alarmingly, and many do not even realise the grave implications of this. May Allah protect our Imaan and that of our generations to come.

Another fitnah is that of liberalism and hedonism, where material wealth and objects and the gratification of desires and self- aggrandizement becomes the very goal and purpose of a human being’s existence. Regarding this fitnah, Nabi (sallallahu-alayhi- wasallam) warned, “When you see greed being pursued, and desires being obeyed, and the world being preferred (over the Hereafter), and every person proud of his own opinion, then worry about yourself (personal salvation) and do not worry about others.” More and more, the prevalence of this fitnah is manifesting in the world. Today, it is all about what car you drive, where you go for vacation, how much of wealth you own, etc.

The disunity and division of the Ummah and the resultant strife, bloodshed and oppression is another example of fitnah. The lesser that is said about this the better, for never has this Ummah, which was supposed to be like a single human body, been as divided and fragmented as it is these days. Whether on an international scale, between Muslim countries and their leaders, or on a national, regional, local level, right down to organisations, families and even homes, there is division and disunity all round. May Allah unite the hearts.

Technology has brought about many fitnahs, such as the fitnah of the internet, mxit, cellphones, computer games, videos, etc. Then there is the fitnahs of drug and substance addiction, illicit sexual relations, divorces, music, satanism, social upheaval, crime, etc.

These are some examples of the fitnahs mentioned. There are in fact hundreds of fitnahs that have been mentioned, and whole books have been written on the subject of fitnah titled “Kitab-al-Fitan”, for example the “Al-fitan” of Allamah Miwazi and others.

WHAT TO DO AT THE TIME OF FITNAH
This is the most important issue. Knowing all about the fitnahs is not sufficient. One needs to know how to survive and combat the fitnahs. This has also been mentioned in the Hadith Shareef. Some of the solutions or remedies proposed are as follows:
Stick to the majority body and their leaders as is mentioned in one Hadith. This refers to the mainstream body of the Ummah – the Ahlus-Sunnah-wal-Jama’ah. He who stays aloof, and goes towards the ‘fringes’ is more likely to go astray.
Remain low profile. The Hadith Shareef says: “like the mat on the floor”. A time will come, when the one who is standing will be better off than the one who is walking and the one who is sitting will be better off than the one who is standing and so on.
Every head of every home must work dedicatedly and devotedly for the reformation and salvation of his own family. The Quran Shareef states: “O Believers, save yourselves and your families from the fire of hell.” And every one is a shepard, responsible for his own flock as is mentioned in a famous Hadith.
Every individual should strive for a strong spiritual condition, which is the only protector against all fitnahs. This will entail, acquiring correct and sufficient basic knowledge, keeping constant company with the pious, reciting the Qur’an and doing Zikrullah regularly and making lots of Dua, along with other good deeds.
Undertake to do Mashwara and Istikharah before undertaking any decision, for in this is great safety and protection, and guidance towards the right path.

May Almighty Allah protect the whole Ummah from every fitnah. We have been taught this Dua in the Hadith Shareef. This is a vital Dua to recite regularly in the dangerous times of fitnah we live in: O Allah! I seek Your protection from all fitnahs, open and subtle. Aameen, Aameen, Aameen.   
      
 

The first conference on the subject of  “Khatme- Nubuwwah”  in Africa is set to take place at CapeTown, South Africa from 1 November to 3 November 2008. The conference, jointly hosted by the International Khatme-Nubuwwah Movement and the Muslim Judicial Council will be addressed by leading international scholars from around the world as well as national scholars. The Qadiani sect is currently celebrating a century of its formation. In order to educate and inform the public about the menace of Qadianism, this conference is being held.

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