Friday, July 24, 2015

The Miracle Within You

Dear Mother, Congratulations! You are not a single entity now. A child is being nourished within you. By your exercising a little caution, this child may become healthy, intelligent, understanding, pious and religious.

However, due to your negligence the child may turn out to be weak, sickly and incompetent.

Ponder over The Greatness of Allah Ta’ala

The Muslim mother should ponder over the greatness of Allah Ta’ala. Therefore ponder over the delicate creation taking place within. A kingdom is being created in your womb which is being supported by machinery and small conduits for the blood and soul. Marvell over the power of Allah Ta’ala, He has created a child in three layers of darkness which is beyond the comprehension of man.


Formulate the following intentions:

  1. I will assign this child for the service of Allah Ta’ala’s Deen.
  2. I will make him/her a Haafiz of the Quraan and an Aalim of Deen.
  3. I will instil in him/her the teachings of Allah Ta’ala and the Sunnats of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam).
  4. I will make him grow up to be a flag bearer of lslam.
The pious Ulama have written that the actions of a pregnant woman during pregnancy have a profound effect on the expectant child. Hence the expectant mother must abstain from disobeying any commandments of Allah Ta’ala. The Ulama have emphasised emphatically on refraining from backbiting and speaking lies as these two sins impact severely on the unborn child.

Similarty, besides the Faraaidh and Waajibaat, she should continue performing good deeds. She should endeavour to perform other sunnah and mustahab actions. If possible perform other nafal salaah like lshraaq, Chaast, Tahajjud, etc.

Few Important Guidelines
  1. Once a woman has confirmed her pregnancy she should express her gratitude to Allah Ta’ala for blessing her with this great bounty. Perform two rakaats Salaat-ush Shukr.
  2. During pregnancy do not see pictures of frightening things such as deformed children, snakes and other frightening animals. Rather look at beautiful things like gardens, flowers, beautiful children, etc.
  3. Always remain calm and happy. Do not become overcome with grief or worry.
  4. Recite Qur’aan Shareef in abundance.
Some Health Guidelines
  • Avoid eating foods that cause constipation.Avoid eating beans, gram, sesame seeds, carrots, radish and beetroot
  • Avoid very hot and very sour foods.
  • Grapes, guavas, pineapples, apples, pomegranates, and mangoes are not detrimental to one’s health.
  • Walk very carefully. Do not stamp your feet.
  • Protect your stomach from unnecessary movement.
  • Protect your stomach from cold winds.
  • Do not lift heavy objects.
  • Avoid anger and depression.
  • Avoid travelling far distances in the last month of pregnancy.
  • Avoid taking much medication especially pain killers.
  • Eat Watermelons, melon as it has a 1000 blessings
The Ninth Month of Pregnancy  
  1. Avoid wearing tight fitting clothes as this affects the blood flow, thereby causing fatigue and nausea.Abstain from wearing high heeled shoes. This affects the spine and may cause back ache.
  2. Be sure to visit your doctor at least once during the last month of pregnancy.
  3. Always remember to lie on your side when you are resting as lying on your back reduces the blood flow.
  4. It is important to supplement your diet with vitamins and iron to meet the extra requirements of pregnancy.
General Guidelines
  1. It is very important for pregnant women to remember that pregnancy is a normal physiological state and not an illness. Hence it is important to remain active during pregnancy.
  2. The best exercise for pregnant women is swimming and walking. It is important for women to begin pelvic floor exercises after 32 weeks of pregnancy in preparation for childbirth.
  3. Women should enjoy a healthy diet to ensure that they do not put on excessive weight during pregnancy which may be difficult to lose. They should most certainly not seat for two’.
  4. As far as possible, breast-feeding your child will ensure that the excess weight does not remain after pregnancy. This is also the healthiest option for your baby.
  5. Most women are diligent about taking their vitamin supplements during pregnancy and once the baby is born, they forget all about the supplements. It is imperative for all mothers to remember to continue vitamin supplements especially calcium during the breast-feeding period.
  6. Breast-feeding has advantages for both mum and baby and it is important to persevere even though the first two weeks of breast-feeding can be difficult.
  7. Exclusive breast-feeding maintains a healthy immune system in the baby and should be continued for two years.

Do not forget to regularly make due for your baby. The dua of a parent for their child is definitely accepted by Allah Ta’ala.


This brought tears to my eyes...
A young girl comes home to her family, her hand resting over her stomach, while others’ faces turn red in shame and anger. A young woman stands in the streets, cradling her infant and silently bearing the acrid judgment of the public.
Whether victims of rape, financial difficulty, or their own unfortunate sins, young women who find themselves unexpectedly with child are immediately judged, shunned, and written off as burdens to society. The attitude towards them is that they are not only unwelcome, but are useless and have nothing of benefit to contribute to the world around them. As a result, this turns into the cycle of self-fulfilling prophesy – by condemning them for their mistakes and withdrawing meaningful support, these young girls and women find themselves adrift, worn down and often unable to believe in their ability to provide a better life for themselves and their children. Furthermore, they may find it difficult to believe that their children will be able to become a force of positive change in the future.
Maryam bint ‘Imraan (‘alayhas-salaam) was a very young girl when she was visited by the angel Jibreel and given the news of her miraculous pregnancy. The priests and masses of Bani Isra’eel reacted with anger and disgust, and she was no longer permitted to live within her sanctuary after the birth of her son, Prophet ‘Isa (‘alayhis-salaam).
In today's day and age, Maryam bint 'Imraan would be considered just another young girl pregnant out of wedlock. When the priests of Bani Isra'eel kicked her out of her sanctuary, she was effectively rendered homeless. We would have written her off as another unfortunate statistic and pity her child as being unable to have a stable home or any kind of meaningful future.
Instead, Maryam became one of the most famous women in Islamic history. She defied the odds and the animosity of her society, and was able to raise a Prophet who changed the course of history.
Although Maryam was falsely accused and was honored in the Qur’an for her great status, a core lesson remains: it is all too easy to judge a woman for her sins, whether perceived or real, but it is a higher level of good character and wisdom to recognize the blessing in every individual’s situation.
One of the reasons that Maryam was able to remain strong, and to raise her son with firm belief in Allah, was because she had support: the support of her family, including her mother – whose unique supplication to Allah ensured that out of all of mankind, only Maryam and ‘Eesa would not be touched by Shaytan. Maryam was not only supported by the women of her family, however, but also by a man: Prophet Zakariyya (‘alayhis-salaam), who had been her guardian and knew first-hand of her character, and who was well aware that the birth of ‘Eesa was a divine miracle.
Without the support of those who believed in her, Maryam could have allowed herself to surrender to despair, and live a quiet, ignominious life without making an effort to raise her son to become the man who was one of the greatest Messengers to walk the Earth.
Often, young girls and women are stigmatized for their mistakes and given little, if any, chance to repent and strive for a better life. Their children, too, are labeled and ostracized, marked indelibly as being unfit or unsuitable to be a part of the greater Ummah.
Just imagine young ‘Eesa (‘alayhis-salaam), being raised in a society where everyone knew the gossip related to his mother. Even today, there are distasteful words used to describe children who are considered illegitimate – and it is known that the Jews considered ‘Eesa (‘alayhis-salaam) as such, wa’l iyaathu billah. Although the miracles of his infancy were known, and it was obvious that he was no ordinary child, he and his mother were still human, and thus subject to the cruelties of slander… just as the children of young women in unfortunate circumstances today are treated.
Despite their outer circumstances, despite the accusations against Maryam’s honour, despite the stigma that ‘Eesa grew up with due to the circumstances of his birth, Maryam and ‘Eesa were both chosen by Allah above all of mankind:
{"O Maryam, indeed Allah has chosen you and purified you and chosen you above the women of the worlds.”} (Qur’an 3:42)
{"O Jesus, indeed I will take you and raise you to Myself and purify you from those who disbelieve…”} (Qur’an 3:55)
It is all too easy for us to pass judgment on others simply because of what we see from them, but it is those same people who could be our Ummah’s greatest hope.
As Muslims, our duty is not to shun and condemn, to withdraw hope and assistance from fellow Muslims, no matter how severe we see their sins as being. Rather, our duty is to help these individuals – to help them overcome their errors, to seek Allah’s forgiveness, to repent and to strive to become greater Muslims. The very people whom we may look down upon, may be the ones who have the potential to become leaders for this Ummah.
Never give up on the hundreds and thousands of young, pregnant girls and single mothers. Never write them off as "hopeless" and their children as 'burdens' to this Ummah.
Instead, think of them as one of the most powerful sources of hope for this Ummah: Those who, with strong emaan and the right tools, could raise a generation of heroic Muslims who have overcome the odds with a strength that will help change this world for the better.

Words… can be deadly weapons

In all probability at some point in our childhood we were told by our parents, ‘sticks and stones may break our bones, but words will hurt us none’, or something similar. Our well-meaning parents would usually have said this in response to someone at school or our siblings saying something mean to us. It was probably their way of getting us to cope with the verbal assault.

In all likelihood some people actually believe the ‘but words will hurt us none’ part. Words are one of the most devastating weapons yet devised by man. They kill in many different ways. We’ve all heard term ‘emotional abuse’. But what is it? Simply put, it is when a husband, wife, parent or so-called loved ones uses words to slowly, but inevitable, grind away at a person’s self esteem until there is little left.

Even in ‘normal’ relationships, the words couples sometimes use when speaking to each other is surprising. These are devoid of respect and designed to cause maximum hurt instead of seeking solutions to problems.

In the absence of mutual respect, a relationship is almost certainly doomed. When one hears parents talk in that way to each other, one can well imagine how they must be talking to their children. It is at this level that the most damage can be caused. Many people who experience relationship turmoil in adulthood trace back to something hurtful said to them repeatedly as children by parents, caregivers or teachers.

For example, a health professional spoke of a patient who as a child was clumsy due to late development of his gross motor control. Nothing that a few sessions with an occupational therapist could have fix the problem. Instead, he had to endure years of being called “butterfingers”, “what’s wrong with you?” “Don’t give him anything to carry, he will just break it”. As he grew up, his confidence in his ability to do anything new was completely shattered.

How often do we call our children “stupid”, “useless”, “good” for nothing”, and nuisance”, “pain in the back” “and how often do we say “if you do that again, I’m going to kill you”.

Sometimes parents tell their children that if they misbehave it will make mummy or daddy sick; and then, purely coincidentally, the parent gets sick and dies. Can you imagine the guilt that child then feels for the rest of this life?

Teachers, of course, can inflict massive harm on a child’s growth by the words they use to address their pupils - “domkop”, “fool”, “idiot”, and “you won’t amount to anything”. If someone hears these words often enough, they may start to internalise it, believe it and live it.

It is imperative that we all reflect on what we say to our loved ones. Many a time we speak without realising the long term consequences of what we say.

Let us strive to treat our loved ones with love and respect, Aameen

Monday, July 06, 2015


Perhaps you spent your qiyaam last night with a heavy heart and tears in your eyes. Perhaps your worries were weighing you down, leaving you unable to feel peace and tranquility. Perhaps you felt that your sorrows were greater than those of anyone else in the masjid.
Tonight, take a look around at the people standing next to you in salah. The bubbly teenager, the smiling aunty, the cheerful mother, the solemn grandmother... perhaps that teenager is being bullied and fighting... against depression; perhaps that aunty is battling cancer or still feels hopelessly lost in a country that she will never be able to call home; perhaps that mother is a single mom, struggling with her own unfulfilled emotional and physical needs in addition to raising her children on her own; perhaps that grandmother has lost yet another loved one to death, and awaits her own with a sense of inevitability.
When we stand shoulder-to-shoulder and foot-to-foot in the masjid, it's not just about fulfilling a sunnah or engaging in a time-honoured ritual of stomp-on-each-other's-toes - it's about recognizing that we are all, each and every one of us, standing before Allah as His slaves, equallly helpless, equally begging His Mercy and His Forgiveness and the ease that only He can provide.
We all recite "Iyyaaka na'budu wa iyyaaka nasta'een" - You alone do we worship, and You alone do we turn to for help - because it's not just one or two or three of us who are dealing with difficulties in life, but *all* of us. He knows us better than we know ourselves, and He gave us this beautiful verse to remind us of that fact.
Yet we also need to remember that we are not defined by our struggles, our tests, our challenges, our sorrows, our heartbreaks. They are merely a part of our lives, not the complete sum of them - what we *are* defined by are our actions, our faith, and how we choose to face these tests in our lives.
RasulAllah (sallAllahu 'alayhi wa sallam) reminded us, "Whomsoever abstains from asking others, Allah will make him contented, and whoever tries to make himself self-sufficient, Allah will make him self-sufficient. And whoever remains patient, Allah will make him patient. Nobody can be given a blessing better and greater than patience.” (Bukhari)
Courtesy: Salafi Feminist

Wednesday, July 01, 2015

Womentrepreneur: The Longest Arm

Womentrepreneur: The Longest Arm
All over the world, women engage in handicrafts, an activity that preserves aspects of different cultures and heritages as well as being a source of income in a global economy where women often suffer the brunt of poverty. Some women enjoy great success and move on to build companies based both within and outside of their homes –earning themselves the title of “womentrepreneurs.”

Umm al-Mu’mineen Zaynab bint Jahsh (radhiAllahu ‘anha) was one such woman: she was known to be skilled with her hands, and ran a successful home-based business making and selling crafts.

Zaynab is most well-known due to the story surrounding her marriage to RasulAllah (sallAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) after her divorce from his freed-slave and adopted son, Zaid ibn Harith.
She used to spend a great deal of time with her home-based business, and it is said that she was extremely skilled in both tanning skins and piercing pearls for jewelry and other adornments. She then donated the proceeds of her work to those in need, making her beloved amongst the poor.

One day, RasulAllah (sallAllahu 'alayhi wa sallam) went to his wives and said:

“The fastest of you to follow me [after death] will be the one who has the longer arms.” (Sahih Muslim)

A’ishah bint Abi Bakr (radhiAllahu ‘anha) described how, eager to know which of them it would be, all the wives of RasulAllah (sallAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) measured each others' arms against a wall, and Zaynab was disappointed - she was more petite in comparison to the other wives, and so her arms were the shortest.

Yet after the death of RasulAllah (sallAllahu 'alayhi wa sallam), the true meaning of his prophecy became clear: it was Zaynab bint Jahsh who indeed had 'the longest arm' - and it was she who passed away in the year 20 AH.

There are many Muslim women who love doing arts and crafts, but are made to feel guilty that they're "wasting their time" or that “it’s just a hobby.” The truth is, just doing what you enjoy doing can be a wonderful way of gaining ajr (reward) and, in fact, turning it into a source of sadaqah jaariyah (continuous charity).

RasulAllah (sallAllahu‘alayhi wa sallam) said, "The most beloved action to Allah is the most continuous, even if little." (Muslim)

Entrepreneurship can most certainly be a method of making, selling, and giving in charity regularly, thereby earning us the love of Allah through something that we love doing as well.
In addition, some studies have found that engaging in creative activity contributes to higher levels of happiness
– which, for Muslims, can feed into a positive cycle of sharing that joy with others in the form of a smile, closer emotional bonds with our loved ones, and higher levels of Emaan and Taqwah… all of which are ways of increasing in reward and growing closer to Al-Musawwir, the Shaper of all creation.

Islamic history is also a testament to the power of the arts; pottery, metal-work, clothing, and many other such artifacts remain symbols of Islam’s influence and reach throughout the world. Undoubtedly, Muslim women were of those who fashioned such items and left behind an incredible legacy for us to witness and remember.

Muslim women today are just as creative and hardworking as the women of yesteryear, and entrepreneurship remains an option for them to not only engage the senses and contribute to a tradition of Islamic craftsmanship, but to follow in the footsteps of Umm al-Mu’mineen Zaynab bint Jahsh (radhiAllahu ‘anha).

For those of us who may not be so creatively inclined, we should consider it of equal importance to support those Muslim women who do expend precious time and resources in these painstaking and beautiful efforts. Heroism doesn’t necessarily have to be a dramatic act on a grand scale; sometimes, the greatest of heroes can be found amongst those who stretch their arms out in small but regular acts of charity.