Importance of Family System & Identity (Ahadith 3111 – 3112)
The importance Islam places on family system and values is widely known. A family is the basic unit of a society and hence affects the latter directly. Strong family ties mean a strong society and so on. There are innumerable benefits of this strength; peace, unity, empathy, emotional stability, respect and improved health to name a few. Similarly, weakness in family ties and relationships reflect on the society as a whole. One would find chaos, selfishness, suffering relationships, trust issues etc. in such a community.
The following two ahadith are examples of how Islam enforces family system and one’s right to belong to their family and to be known as their own father’s son/daughter. If someone intentionally tries to change the identity of a person, the consequences can be severe.
Volume 4, Book 56, Number 711 :
Narrated by Abu Dhar (radiallaahu `anhu)
The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, “If somebody claims to be the son of any other than his real father knowingly, he but disbelieves* in Allah, and if somebody claims to belong to some folk to whom he does not belong, let such a person take his place in the (Hell) Fire.”
*”Disbelief” (kufr) in Arabic is also used for ungratefulness.
Volume 4, Book 56, Number 712 :
Narrated by Wathila bin Al-Asqa (radiallaahu `anhu)
Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, “Verily, one of the worst lies is to claim falsely to be the son of someone other than one’s real father, or to claim to have had a dream one has not had, or to attribute to me what I have not said.”
Changing one’s lineage is an example of this. In areas where the hierarchy of castes and tribes still exist, people try to “switch” to a superior one just for a higher social status and better connections. This is wrong. It can lead to multiple issues of identity, marriage and inheritance.
Takeaway from this? Know your father (and family by extension).
I Know You’re Tired, But Is It The Right Kind?
By Madiha Nabeel
Like every mother I go to bed tired or exhausted or sometimes a bit of both. After serving dinner, doing dishes, preparing lunches, feeding kids, changing kids, putting kids to bed and praying `Ishaa etc., I reach for the bed to end the day. My body needs rest and my mind runs through a list of tasks and tries to organize, prioritize and sort them for the day ahead. But I make it, day in and day out, through school days and weekends, sick days and celebrations, I try to make it. Taking one day at a time. But once the dust of tasks and duties settles and the kids are fast asleep, I can finally hear nothing but my conscious and the self checklist begins (provided that I didn’t pass out by then). The list is long for us mothers because we check whether we did the necessary tasks and whether we did them right? And then did our kids do the right things and did they do them right?
It is when I can see the flaws and take notes for self like I am not serving enough iron rich food nowadays, for example, and from now on I will try to let my kid dress herself etc.
Having painted a regular day ending to you let me share two more pictures from the Quran with you:
قُلْ هَلْ نُنَبِّئُكُم بِٱلْأَخْسَرِينَ أَعْمَٰلًا
Say, [O Muhammad], “Shall we [believers] inform you of the greatest losers as to [their] deeds?
ٱلَّذِينَ ضَلَّ سَعْيُهُمْ فِى ٱلْحَيَوٰةِ ٱلدُّنْيَا وَهُمْ يَحْسَبُونَ أَنَّهُمْ يُحْسِنُونَ صُنْعًا
[They are] those whose effort is lost in worldly life, while they think that they are doing well in work.”
أُولَٰٓئِكَ ٱلَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا بِئَايَٰتِ رَبِّهِمْ وَلِقَآئِهِۧ فَحَبِطَتْ أَعْمَٰلُهُمْ فَلَا نُقِيمُ لَهُمْ يَوْمَ ٱلْقِيَٰمَةِ وَزْنًا
Those are the ones who disbelieve in the verses of their Lord and in [their] meeting Him, so their deeds have become worthless; and We will not assign to them on the Day of Resurrection any importance.
And the second picture from Al-Ghashiyah
وُجُوهٌ يَوْمَيِذٍ خَـشِعَةٌ
تَصْلَى نَاراً حَامِيَةً
Some faces, that Day will be humiliated. Laboring, weary. They will enter in the hot blazing Fire. (88:2-4)
So on the day of judgement there will be some groups of people who will be waiting for the result of the worldly test and they will be tired and exhausted. The effort and struggle they did will be evident on their faces but the result will not something expected. They will not be rejoicing rather they will be overcome with regret and guilt. Imagine them like a champion on a losing team who made all the right efforts but targeted the wrong goal. Looking at their effort weighing nothing, looking at hell screaming in rage in front of them, they will realize they did terribly wrong.
So let’s do one thing when we go to bed. Let’s check whether we have made at least some effort in the right direction. This is the thought that changed my Duas. Now I pray, ‘oh Allah make me tired on the right path’. Because the older you get the more you accept the fact that this world is a test and not paradise. Also it is not meant to be paradise but like a test center it presents you with situations to test and record your answers. So you seriously start working out the solution to the test.
Picking Sides (Hadith No. 3110)
Continuing where we left off from Kitaab-ul-Manaaqib [Book of Virtues and Merits of the Prophet (pbuh) and his Companions] of Sahih al-Bukhari (Volume 4, Book 56, Hadith No. 710).
(4) Chapter: The descent of Yemenites from Isma’il (Ishmael)
Volume 4, Book 56, Number 710:
Narrated by Salama (radiallaahu `anhu)
Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) passed by some people from the tribe of Aslam practicing archery. He said, “O children of Ishmael! Throw (arrows), for your father was an archer. I am on the side of Bani so-and-so,” meaning one of the two teams. The other team stopped throwing, whereupon the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, “What has happened to them?” They replied, “How shall we throw while you are with Bani so-and-so?” He said, “Throw for I am with all of you.”
Once the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) picked a side, how could the other team continue to compete? They knew they would surely lose for the other side had major advantage over them. Also, I think, they might have felt left out.. like how children feel when parents prefer one child over the other. So to quickly put an end to the matter, the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) opted out of choosing sides altogether and said, “I’m with all of you”. No arguments. Very wise.
There’s a lesson here for all of us. There’s always someone who looks up to us, whether it’s our children, younger siblings, friends, colleagues, subordinates or anyone else in our lives who favors our attentions. Sometimes there are situations where picking sides might lead to unpleasant circumstances so at that time, following this example of the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) would be the way to go. :)
Note, staying neutral isn’t always recommended. Wisdom requires acting/reacting according to time, place and circumstance.
The month of Ramadan, as for most, has been a time of reflection and contemplation for me. Allah (SWT) shows us our true capabilities and weaknesses during this month. When Shaytan gets locked away, we’re able to do so much more in terms of good and avoid all (most?) that is bad. Similarly, we see how Shaytan uses the other eleven months to train us in bad habits, so much so that they become second nature. It takes Ramadan’s intervention to make us realize the degree of damage done. Alhamdulillah for Ramadan!
I have always found it easy to train myself in Ramadan. I like to pick at least one thing that I want to improve in myself and work on it the entire month. The first few days are difficult but slowly the habit does start to develop. By the end of Ramadan, it’s just that – a habit, something I’ll actually find hard to not do anymore because it’s become a part of my daily routine. And with the help of dua of consistency, I’m able to continue the habit for the entire year.
This year I had made a list of things that I needed to work on, e.g. some daily sunnahs that I wanted to incorporate into my daily routine etc. The list also included the word “blog???”, just like that – with three (or maybe more) question marks. This blog has seen a few ups and down in its life (amiright). I used to be quite regular in the beginning, posting from Sahih Bukhari everyday. Then it slowly reduced to once a week and then.. a long pause. The last Bukhari post I wrote was in August 2017. A huge factor of the said pause, aside from my laziness, was a downtrend in the quality of the content. In the end, I was literally just posting ahadith without any explanations or comments of my own. So I decided to take a break and find my motivation again.
Alhamdulillah for Ramadan! It really is a month of opportunities and second chances. I have decided to post actively on the blog again inshaAllah. I will not commit to a frequency yet, but my plan and hope for now is to post once a week or so. Just felt like informing my readership about this little update. :)
I hope this Ramadan has helped you improve in some way as well. I would love for you to share your story of how you set your goals and work on them during this month. May Allah accept all our ibaadah and efforts and help us against Shaytan once this beautiful month is over. Last but not least, Eid Mubarak! <3
The Journey of Life
This life is like a journey
With stops along the way
Some leave us before we reach our stop
We leave some on their way
You get on the train of life
Because you don’t have a choice
You get off on your stop
Because you don’t have a choice
“What can I do then” he asks
“I feel like I’m trapped”
So he decides to ignore the reality and has fun
Until his body is wrapped
Every stop seems like the final one
I’ve never seen them come back
Some leave while they’re happy
Some leave while they’re sad
He thinks this train came by itself
That there’s no intelligent design
That he can be on this journey and take what he wants
He defines for himself reward for a crime
It doesn’t make sense to him
“How could there be a life after ours?
You know I’ve even been to the edges of this train
I’ve even explored the Moon and Mars”
He thinks his rebellion makes him strong
It makes him feel proud
He writes lengthy equations of math
He gathers a huge crowd
Then one day he too is forced to leave
But they’re always worried before they go
It makes me wonder if this is all there is to life
Or is there something more?