• The Journey, Where does our soul go? //// *

    Assalamu’alaikum Warohmatullohi Wabarakatuhu…
    Bismillaahirrohmaanirrohiim …..

    The Journey By Huma Ahmad
    Imagine yourself at the moment of your death.

    What thoughts cross your mind? Memories of family and friends? Panic? Regrets? Remembrance of Allah? What is death? What happens to us after we die? What is life in the Hereafter like, this new and strange world after death? Do we lose consciousness of this life? Where does our soul go? Do we feel and think the same?

    The ineffable feeling of crossing the boundary between this world and the next cannot be described in words, nor imagined in the mind, but can be understood only through divine revealation and inspiration. Let us for the next few moments seek an understanding of this, death, the only certainty in life.

    Sometimes we may not want to know about the processes that occur after we die because we are afraid or don’t want to think about it. However, this is not the attitude of a Muslim. We should be foremost in learning and understanding death, so we can live our lives accordingly. The prophet (saw) said, “Live in this world as though you are a stranger or a traveler (passing through it).” [Muslim] We are on a journey and should know about the whole journey’s itinerary,
    not just one part.

    Death is inevitable. It is the one thing that we can be certain about in life. We are born to die. Every soul shall have a taste of death no matter who they are. This is confirmed for us many times in the Quran:

    “Every soul shall have a taste of death: and only on the Day of Judgement shall you be paid your full recompense.” (Quran 3:185)

    “Every soul shall have a taste of death: and We test you by evil and by good, by way of trial. To Us must you return.” (21:35)

    “Every soul shall have a taste of death: In the end to Us shall you be brought back.” (29:57)

    Death is not pure annihilation, but rather both the living and dead are aware, but there is a difference that can’t be compared. Death is merely movement from one world to another. It can be described as a journey through a wormhole to a separate dimension of existence.

    We begin this journey in our mother’s wombs. 120 days after conception the soul is blown into the fetus. Narrated ‘Abdullah bin Mus’ud: “Allah’s Apostle, the true and truly inspired said, ‘(The
    matter of the Creation of) a human being is put together in the womb of the mother in forty days, and then he becomes a clot of thick blood for a similar period, and then a piece of flesh for a similar period. Then Allah sends an angel who is ordered to write four things. He is ordered to write down his (i.e. the new creature’s) deeds, his livelihood, his (date of) death, and whether he will be blessed or wretched (in religion). Then the soul is breathed into him’”[Bukhari]

    We have no choice in who our parents are, our race, color or nationality. “He it is Who shapes you in the wombs as He pleases. There is no god but He, The Exalted in Might, The Wise.” (3:6) Allah knows all of this before our birth even, but we still continue our journey to fulfill our destiny. The next part of our trip begins after we are born. This is the life of this world, in which we now reside and are familiar with. We may stay at this station for a few seconds or as long as 100 years or more. Here we grow up and acquire the means to happiness or misery. We are given the ability to make choices after the age of puberty and we will later be punished or rewarded based upon them. Allah gives each of us the natural Fitrah, knowledge of good and bad as well as right and wrong. The rest is up to us. As the Quran says, “By the Soul, and the proportion and order given to it, and its enlightenment as to its wrong and its right–Truly he succeeds that purifies it, and he fails that corrupts it!” (91:7-10)

    In this life, the soul and the body are together except during sleep when the soul may leave the body and come back in the morning or Allah may take the soul at that time. “It is Allah that takes the souls at death; and those that die not (He takes) during their sleep: those on whom He has passed the decree of death, He keeps back (from returning to life), but the rest He sends (to their bodies) for a term appointed. Verily in this are Signs for those who reflect.” (39:42) It is indeed something to be pondered; that we die each night and Allah gives us another chance at life when we wake up the next day.

    We also find continuous biological processes of life and death during this time. In every cell, organ or system of organs, life and death is occuring. There are several hundreds of thousands of enzymatic reactions that take place in the body every fraction of a second. Some of these biochemical reactions are used to synthesize living materials while others are either used to synthesize dead materials or to get rid of living materials. “You (Allah) bring the Living out
    of the Dead, and You bring the Dead out of the Living” (3:27)

    This part of our journey ends as our death begins.

    No one knows where, how and when he or she will die. “Verily, the knowledge of the hour is with Allah (alone). It is He who sends down rain, and He who knows what is in the wombs, nor does anyone know what it is that he will earn on the morrow. Nor does anyone know in what land he is to die. Verily, with Allah is full knowledge and He is acquainted (with all things.)”(31:34) Nor does anyone have the right to take his or her own life. If they do they will automatically go to Hell. The One who gave life is the only one who has the right to take life.

    When someone begins to die the Angel of Death or Izraeel comes to take the soul out of the body and puts it in a place called the Barzakh. “Say: ‘The Angel of Death, put in charge of you, will (duly) take your souls. Then shall you be brought back to your Lord.” (32:11) “Wherever you are, Death will find you out, even if you are in towers built up strong and high! ” (4:78)

    For those who led a life of evil, the removal of the soul is tough and difficult. Sometimes, more than one angel has to work together to beat the face and back of the deceased. But for those who lived a good life, the soul yearns to meet its Lord and leaves the body with ease, like a drop of water pouring out. A light like the sun’s ray and a sweet fragrance come out to the soul. Then it ascends amid rows of angels, but those who are there cannot see or smell this. The deceased is questioned, punished, beaten, and wails, and cries out. All this happens while they lie dead and their family is around them, but they neither hear nor see it. The sleeper dreams and enjoys their dream or is tormented by it, while someone awake at their side is not able to perceive what is going on at all.

    Allah has given inanimate objects awareness and perception by which they glorify their Lord. The stones fall down out of fear of Him. The mountains and trees prostrate. The pebbles, water and plants glorify Him. All this is going on but we are not aware of it. “There is nothing which does not glorify His praise but you do not understand their glorification.” (17:44) The  Companions heard the food that was being eaten glorifying Allah. That was because the
    Companions had a transparency of heart that does not now exist among us. All these things are part of our world and yet we are in complete ignorance of them. It is not too much of an extrapolation to extend this to our being unaware of the things of the Next World.

    After the soul is taken, if it is a pure soul and has relatives in the Next World who are people of the Garden, they come to meet the soul with yearning and great joy. They ask it about the condition of those who are still alive and ’suffering’ in this world. The angels then bear the soul from one heaven to the next until it comes into the presence of Allah, Then it returns and sees the washing of the body, its shrouding, and the funeral procession. It says either, ‘Take me forward! Take me forward!’ or ‘Where are you taking me?’ The living, of course, hear none of this. The soul comes back and stays floating above the body and when the corpse is placed in the grave, the soul inserts itself between the body and the shroud so that the questioning can take place.

    Whenever someone died, the prophet (saw) would stand for awhile at the burial site and then say, “Seek forgiveness for your (Muslim) brother and pray for his steadfastness since he is now being questioned.” [Abu Dawud]

    The angels pray for the soul of the believer in the heavens just as people pray over the body on earth. The soul hears the receding footfall of the last of the people who followed the funeral and the earth is levelled over them. The earth or even a rock hollowed out and sealed over with lead, would not prevent the two angels, Munkar and Nakir from reaching it.

    This is all narrated in the following sound hadith of the prophet (saw):

    “When the believer is about to depart from this world and go forward into the Next World, angels with faces as bright as the sun descend from the heavens and sit around him in throngs stretching as far as the eye can see. Then the Angel of Death comes and sits at his head
    and says, “Good soul, come out to forgiveness and pleasure from Allah!” Then his soul emerges like a drop of water flows from a water-skin and the angel takes hold of it. When he has grasped it, the other angels do not leave it in his hand even for the twinkling of an eye. They take it and place it in a perfumed shroud and fragrance issues from it like the sweetest scent of musk found on the face of the earth.’

    “Then they bear it upwards and whenever they take it past a company of angels, they ask, ‘Who is this good soul?’ and the angels with the soul reply, ‘So-and-so the son of so-and-so,’ using the best names by which people used to call him in this world. They bring him to the lowest heaven and ask for the gate to be opened for him. It is opened for him and angels who are near Allah from each of the heavens accompany him to the subsequent heaven until he reaches to the heaven where Allah the Great is. Allah, the Mighty and Majestic, says, ‘Register the book of My slave in ‘Illiyun and take him back to earth. I created them from it and I return them to it and I will bring them forth from it again.’

    “His soul is then returned to his body and two angels come to him. They make him sit up and say to him, ‘Who is your Lord?’ He replies, ‘My Lord is Allah.’ They ask him, ‘What is your religion?’ He replies, ‘My religion is Islam.’ They ask him, ‘Who is this man who was sent among you?’ He replies, ‘The Messenger of Allah.’ They ask him, ‘How did you come to know these things?.’ He replies, ‘I read the Book of Allah, believed it, and declared it to be true.’ Then a
    Voice from on high declares, ‘My slave has spoken the truth, so spread out carpets from the Garden for him and open a gate of the Garden for him!’

    “Then some of its fragrance and perfume comes to him, his grave is expanded for him as far as the eye can see, and a man with beautiful garments and a fragrant scent comes to him and says, ‘Rejoice in what delights you for this is the day which you were promised.’ He asks,
    ‘Who are you? Yours is a face which presages good.’ He replies, ‘I am your good actions.’ Then he says, ‘O Lord, let the Last Hour come soon so that I may rejoin my family and my property!’

    “When an unbeliever is about to depart from this world and go forward into the Next World, angels with black faces descend from the heavens carrying rough hair-cloth and sit around him in throngs stretching as far as the eye can see. Then the Angel of Death comes and sits at his
    head and says, ‘Foul soul, come out to the wrath and anger of Allah!’ Then his soul divides up in his body and it is dragged out like a skewer is pulled out of wet wool. Then the angel takes hold of it. When he has grasped it, the other angels do not leave it in his hand even for the twinkling of an eye. They take it and wrap it in the rough haircloth and a stench comes out of it like the worst stench of a corpse on the face of the earth.’

    “Then they take it up and whenever they take it past a company of angels, they ask, ‘Who is this foul soul?’ and the angels with the soul reply, ‘So-and-so the son of so-and-so,’ using the worst names by which people used to call him in this world. They bring him to the lowest heaven and ask for the gate to be opened for him. It does not get opened.’

    “The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, then recited, ‘The gates of heaven will not be opened to them nor will they enter the Garden until the camel passes through the eye of the needle.’ (7:40) Then Allah the Mighty and Majestic, will say, ‘Register his book in Sijjin in the lowest earth.’ Then his soul is flung down. The Prophet then recited, ‘Whoever associates anything with Allah, it is as though he has fallen from heaven and the birds snatch him away or the wind sweeps him headlong into a place far away.’ (22:31)

    “Then his soul is returned to his body and two angels come and say to him, ‘Who is your Lord?’ He replies, ‘Alas, alas, I do not know!’ Then a voice calls from on high, ‘My slave has lied, so spread out carpets from the Fire for him and open a gate of the Fire for him!’ then a hot blast from it comes to him, his grave is made so narrow for him that his ribs are pressed together, and a man with a hideous face and clothing and a foul odour comes to him and says, ‘Grieve on
    account of what has brought you disgrace for this is the day which you were promised.’ He asks, ‘Who are you? Yours is a face which presages evil.’ He replies, ‘I am your bad actions.’ Then he says, ‘O Lord, do not let the Last Hour come!’”

    This life in the grave or Interspace is the next part of our journey. An ‘interspace’ is something that separates two things: heaven and earth, this world and the Next World or the period between death and resurrection. The bliss or punishment of the Interpsace is not the same as that of the Herafter, but rather something that happens between the two worlds.

    In death, the body remains in the ground while the soul is in the interspace or Barzakh between the two worlds. However, the two are still connected and so the bliss or punishment happens to both of them. When Allah desires bliss or punishment for the soul, He connects it to the body. This is dependent on the will of Allah and dependent on a person’s own actions. The soul is diffused in more than one place at the same time. The proof of this is that the prophet (saw) saw Musa (as) on the night of the Night Journey standing in prayer in his grave and he also saw him in the sixth and seventh heavens.

    During this life in the grave part of our journey the souls are divided into two groups: one group is punished and the other group is in bliss. Usually when we think of the ‘grave’, it is a word that
    inspires fear. We are pained, but not aware of the delight it can contain. Indeed, the bliss of the Grave is better than any delight that this world can offer.

    The liberated souls of those who are in bliss visit each other and discuss what happened in the world they have left and the people of that world. Allah says, “Whoever obeys Allah and the Messenger, they are with those whom Allah has blessed, the prophets, the sincere, the martyrs and the righteous. Very excellent companions they are!” (4:69)

    As the hadiths narrate, if the soul was a believing one, a door onto the fire is opened and the soul is shown it’s place in the Fire had they disobeyed Allah. Then that door is locked and another door onto the Garden is opened and they are shown their place there. This door will remain open until the Day of Rising. Some of the sweetness and fragrance of the Garden reaches them and their grave is made spacious. The believer sleeps in peace just as if they were in one of the meadows of the Garden. Their narrow grave expands and stretches for the soul as far as the eye can see.

    This spaciousness, light and greenery in which the believer remains from the time of his death until the Day of Rising is not the same as we know in our world. If a living person were to open a grave, they would not find any expanse, light or greenness there. They would not find an open door through which they could see the Garden. They do not see bliss or torment. It is only the dead person who is aware of these things and sees them. Allah, through His wisdom, has the power to veil this from the living. The proof that this is so is shown by the fact that there are other creatures like the Jinn who live with us on the earth. They converse in raised voices among us but we do not see or hear them. There were angels who fought with the believers (at Badr) and struck down the unbelievers and shouted at them, but the Muslims did not see or hear them. Jibril came to the prophet (saw) in the midst of the people and they did not see or hear

    If however the soul was a disbelieving one, a door to the Garden is opened for the unbeliever and they are told to look at what their place would have been in the Garden had they obeyed Allah. Then it is locked and another door is opened and they are told to look at their place in the fire. It stays open and the blast of hot air from it continues to reach them until the Day of Rising. The earth presses in on them and they are crushed to the point that their ribs split apart.

    If a righteous person were to be buried in a fiery furnace, their portion of bliss would still reach their soul and body and Allah would make the fire cool and peaceful for them. For the wrongdoer, the cool air becomes fire and hot wind. The elements and the matter of the universe obey their Lord, Originator and Creator. None of them are able to do anything except what He wills and everything obeys His will in humble submission to His decree.

    This part of our journey in our graves is still mostly unknown territory. Outwardly the grave is stillness and quiet while inwardly it contains secrets and terrors which an ordinary person cannot
    percieve. It is a strange fact that animals are able to hear the punishment in the grave while human beings as a general rule cannot. The prophet (saw) said, “They are punished and the animals hear it.”

    Various forms of punishment rain down on a person in the grave according to the type of wrong actions they committed. There are hadiths of the prophet (saw) about the Night Journey which contain descriptions of the many types of punishment he saw in the interspace between the two worlds.There are those who are driven like cattle and forced to eat herbage more bitter than aloes and the bitter fruit of Zaqqum and driven on to the hot stones of Jahannam because they did not purify their property by paying Zakat.

    There are those who have to eat foul putrid meat because they fornicated. Some of them have bellies as big as houses and whenever one of them gets up, they are knocked down and say, “O Allah, do not let the Hour come!” They are in the path of the people of Pharaoh who come and trample them while they can do nothing but scream. These are people who devoured usury.

    Some of them are screaming with their mouths gaping open while they devour hot coals which come out of their anuses. These are people who consumed the property of orphans.

    Some of them cut pieces from their own sides and eat their own flesh. They are the slanderers and those about whom the prophet (saw) said, “We saw people cutting flesh from their sides and eating it. It was said, “As you used to consume the flesh of your brother!” I asked, “Who are they?” and I was told, “Those of your community who slandered.” Some of them have brass nails with which they scratch their faces and chests. They are those who were backbiters and
    maligned peoples honour.

    Part of the hadith of the Night Journey is as follows: “Some people were cracking open their heads with a stone. Every time they did this, their heads were restored to what they were like in the first place. This went on and on without stopping. I said, “Jibril, who are they?” Jibril replied, “They are the people who turned away from the prayer.”

    All of this shows that the Punishment of the Grave is true beyond any doubt.

    “Race to forgiveness from your Lord, and a Garden whose breadth is like the breadth of the Heaven and the Earth” (57:21)

    The intelligent are those who protect themselves against the evil of this punishment before it is too late. They know with certainty that sooner or later this day will come and maybe without any warning. When it does, they will leave behind everything and move to another world. Only there will they feel regret, but regret then will not do them any good. In that place, only good actions will be of any use. They alone will be useful currency on that Critical day. Only with them will a person be able to purchase a magnificent mansion in the Garden with all the luxuries and blessings it contains, an everlasting mansion, not one which will disappear as things do in
    this world. The intelligent person is the one who acts for this world as if they were going to live forever and acts for the Next World as if they were going to die tomorrow.

    The Grave is an embrace from which neither believer or unbeliever can escape. Our souls stay in the Barzakh and visit the grave regularly for rewards or punishments. Afterwards, our journey continues and the believer is relieved of its pressure while the unebliever remains
    in punishment.

    The next part of our journey includes the rebirth from what is left of our bodies, the seed and its embryo, called Ajaf of the sacrum. This method of rebirth of human beings is as simple as the rebirth of a plant from its own seeds. Plants carry seeds that have their genetic traits embedded on chromosomes. The genes on the chromosomes carry everything needed to bring the plant back to its shape, height, variety, chemical composition and other characteristics. In the same
    way, the embryos of human beings germinate and the new life will start on the Day of Rising.

    Allah instructs Angel Israfeel to blow the horn twice. The first is to ready every seed for germination. Water of Life is then poured upon these seeds in their graves. The soul comes back from the barzakh to join its biological entity at this time. The second blow of the trumpet helps those seeds to germinate and produce every person back to normal. They come out of their graves in a state of shock, naked without any clothes or shoes.

    “The trumpet will be sounded when all that are in the heavens and in the earth will swoon except such as will please Allah (to exempt). Then will a second one be sounded, when, behold, they will be standing and looking on!” (39:68) “The trumpet shall be sounded, when behold! From the sepulchres (men and women) will rush forth to their Lord! They will say: ‘Ah! Woe unto us! Who had raised us up from out beds of repose?’ (A voice will say: ) ‘This is what Allah, Most Gracious had promised, and true was the word of the messengers!” (36:51-52)

    Everyone will be raised up with the same identification features down to our very fingerprints. “Does man think that We cannot assemble his bones? Nay, We are able to put together in perfect order the very tips of his fingers.” (75:3-4)

    After our rebirth our journey continues as each of us is taken to a place of Assembly. “On that day We shall leave them to surge life waves on one another. The trumpet will be blown, and We shall collect them all together. (18:99) All will be waiting for the Court of Allah, the Court of Justice to decide for them. The Day of Assembly is a day of fear, agony and anxiety. It is a day when each of us will be worried about what will happen to us personally. “At length, when there comes the Deafening Noise–that day shall a man flee from his own brother, and from his mother and his father, and from his wife and his children. Each one of them, that Day, will have enough
    concern (of his own) to make him indifferent to the others.” (80:33-37)

    With the heat of sun, sweating, and presence of too many people next to one another, the situation will be very scary and chaotic. “O mankind! Fear your Lord! For the convulsion of the Hour (of Judgement) will be a thing terrible! The Day you shall see it, every mother giving suck shall forget her suckling babe, and every pregnant female shall drop her load (unformed). You shall see mankind as in a drunken riot, yet not drunk; but dreadful will be the Chastisement of
    Allah.” (22:1-2)

    On this day seven groups of people will be protected by Allah, these are mentioned in Hadith: “Seven types of people will be under the shelter of mercy on the Day when there will be no shade other than that of Allah’s mercy: 1) a just imam, 2) a young person who kept busy in Allah’s worship, 3) a person whose heart is attached to the masjid, 4)two people who loved each other for Allah’s sake, gathered for His sake and parted, remembering Him, 5) a man who was invited by a beautiful and charming woman but declined her offer, saying “I fear Allah”; 6) a person who gave charity so secretly that their left hand did not know what was given by the right hand , and 7) a person who remembered Allah privately, so that their eyes brimmed with tears.” [Bukhari, Muslim]

    Each person shall then be grouped behind his or her leader, prophet, messenger, mentor, celebrity, etc. All will be put in lines waiting for the Court of Allah to take place and our journey to continue. “On  the day We shall call together all human beings with their (respective) Imams” (17:71)

    Judgement Day will be our next stop. This is the day when Allah personally will judge everyone directly with absolute justice. Abu Hurayrah related that the prophet (saw) said: “Every servant of Allah will remain standing before Allah on the Day of Judgement until he has answered five questions about five things: His life–how he spent it; his knowledge–how much he acted upon it; his wealth–how he acquired it and how he spent it; and his body (and health)–how he used it.” [Muslim]

    Each person will then receive their book that contains each and every thing they have done from the time of birth till death. This book includes activites, appearance and intention. Such a book could be similar to videotape which records all these three paramaters. It is not unfathomable to think about this in a time in which we have CDRoms whose glinting thin surface contains encyclopedias full of information.

    “Then he who is given his Record in his right hand, soon will his account be taken by an easy reckoning, and he will turn to his people, rejoicing!” (84:7-9) “And he that will be given his Record in his left hand will say: “Ah! Would that my record had not been given to me!” (69:25) Their faces will be in gloom and they will be distressed with fear and anxiety. They will wish and beg to start their life all over again on the earth

    Allah will also select a third group of people: “And those Foremost (in Faith) will be Foremost (in the Hereafter). These will be those Nearest to Allah. In Gardens of bliss: a number of people from those of old, and a few from those of later times. (They will be) on Thrones encrusted (with gold and precious stones), reclining on them, facing each other.” (56:10-16)

    This is where we near the end of our journey. We shall enter the everlasting domain, which comprises of the Garden and the Fire. There is no trip after it for it is the Domain of Eternity.

    We shall pass over Hellfire, some of us remaining while others continue on. “Not one of you but will pass over it: this is, with thy Lord, a Decree which must be accomplished. But We shall save those who guarded against evil, and We shall leave the wrongdoers therein, (humbled) to their knees.” (19:71-72)

    The prophet (saw) said: “The mildest punishment to be inflicted upon a person in Hell is that he will be made to wear a pair of sandals made of fire which will be so hot that they will make his brain boil like things boil on a stove. He will imagine that no one is undergoing a punishment more severe although his punishment, in reality, will be the mildest in Hell.” [Bukhari, Muslim]

    Others who are not qualified to enter Paradise or Hell may be taken to a waiting station called Al- A’raf, to wait until forgiveness is given to them through the Mercy of Allah.

    Others will finally end their journey with their life in Paradise. It is the last destination and hope of every person to arrive here. It is reserved for believers who submitted themselves to Allah and followed His teachings. They are the ones whose loyalty and obedience were to Allah. Paradise has all the beauties of life to enjoy without ever being tired. It is a life of excitement, peace and happiness. The prophet (saw) said: “Allah, the Almighty, says, ‘I have prepared for My righteous servants that which no eyes have ever seen, no ears have ever heard and no heart has ever conceieved.’” [Bukhari, Muslim]

    This Life After is called the Real and the True Life. The Quran explicitly refers to the Life After as the True Life while the life in this world is a superficial one. “What is the life of this world but amusement and play? But verily the Home of the Hereafter — that is Life indeed, if they but knew.” (29:64)

    After completing this journey vicariously here, we should rethink our lives and our deeds as we do them today. We can hide from each other, and ourselves but we cannot hide from Allah. It won’t be long before we are pushed along to the next part of our journey. Time passes quickly and is precious. Everything we do now affects our journey at a later stage. Everything is recorded; our deeds, appearances and even hidden intentions. As travelers, we can prepare and change to make our journey and especially our final stop a better one. Perhaps even one small deed or choice we make can save us if we keep conscious.

    Among the dreams of the early Muslims is one related by Yazid b Nu’ama who said, “A girl died in the al-Jarib plague. Her father met her in a dream after her death and asked her to tell him about the Next World. She replied, ‘My father, this is a big subject you have raised. We know but cannot act. You can act but do not know. By Allah, one or two acts of glorification and one or two rakats of the prayer in the book of my actions are preferable to me than the world and all it contains.’”

    The prophet (saw) related in a true dream he had:

    ” He saw one of the muslims. The Angel of Death came to take his soul but his correct behavior towards his parents came and drove the Angel of Death away from him.’

    ” He saw another of the muslims surrounded by shaytans. Then his remembrance of Allah came and made the shaytans fly from him.’

    “Then he saw a thrid muslim surrounded by the angels of punishment. His prayer came and rescued him from their hands.’ “The tongue of a fourth muslim was lolling out from thirst and
    whenever he approached a pool of water, he was stopped and driven away. Then his fasting of Ramadan came and gave him water to drink.’

    ” He saw another man and the prophets sitting in circles. Everytime the muslim approached one of the circles, he was stopped and driven away. His ghusl for janaba came, took hold of his hand, and sat him down in the circle.’

    “Another muslim had darkness in front of him, behind him, on his right, on his left and above him. He was completely lost in it. Then his hajj and umra came and led him out of the darkness into the light.’

    “Another muslim was being pursued by flames and sparks of fire. His sadaqa formed a veil between him and the fire and shaded his head.’

    “Another muslim was speaking to a group of believers who would not speak to him. His upholding of kinship came and told the group of believers that he had maintained ties of kinship and ordered them to speak to him. Then the believers spoke to him and shook hands with

    “Another muslim was surrounded by the Zabaniyya (angels of Jahannam). His commanding the right and forbidding the wrong came and rescued him from them and put him among the angels of mercy.’

    “Another muslim was kneeling with a veil between him and Allah. His good character came, took his hand and Allah let him enter His presence.’

    “Another muslim had received his book in his left hand. His fear of Allah came and took his book and placed it in his right hand.’ “The scales of another muslim were light in the balance. Those of his children who had died young came and made the scales level.’

    “Another muslim was standing on the brink of Jahannam. His hope in Allah came and rescued him from it, and he withdrew from it.’

    “Another muslim had fallen into the fire. The tears that he had wept out of fear from Allah came and rescued him from it.’

    “Another muslim was standing on the Sirat trembling like a leaf in a strong wind. His good opinion of Allah came and his terror was allayed and he was able to go on.’

    “Another muslim was crawling on the Sirat, sometimes creeping, and sometimes just clinging on. His prayer came and put him on his feet and rescued him.’

    “Another muslim reached the gates of the Garden but they were locked against him. His testimony that there is no god but Allah came and opened the gates for him and let him into the garden.”

    Let us pray that we are among those who work to have an easy trip and have as the end to their journey, the final abode of Paradise. O Allah, We seek refuge with You from the punishment of the grave. O Allah, help us to live and die as Muslims and help us to understand the true object of this life. O Allah, grant us good in this life and good in the life to come, and save us from the torment of the Hellfire.

    “We hear and we obey. Forgive us, our Lord! To You is the journey’s end.” (2:285)

    “Every soul shall have a taste of death: and only on the Day of Judgement shall you be paid your full recompense. Only he who is save far from the Fire and admitted to the Garden will have attained the object (of Life): For the life of this world is but goods and
    chattels of deception” (3:185)

    Sources: “The Soul’s Journey after Death” by Layla Mabrouk
    “Death and Dying” by Dr. Ahmad Sakr
    “The World of the Angels” by Sh. Abdul Hamid Kishk
    “A Treasury of Ahadith” by Dr. Mazhar U. Kazi
    Quran Al-Kareem trans. Abdullah Yusuf Ali

    Ramadan 1418, January 1998

  • “As-salámu ‘alaikum wa rahmatul láhi wa barakátuh!”
    Bismillah Ar Rahman Ar Raheem

    For Our Children: In this Holy Month of Ramadan
    by Amanah Khalid UK

    Can we fast? Oh yes we can!
    It is the Month of Ramadan.
    We eat when Allah says we can,
    We do not do what has been banned,
    Can we fast? Oh yes we can!
    In the Month of Ramadan.

    Can we be good? Oh yes we can!
    It is the Month of Ramadan.
    We are good for Dad and Mam,
    We do not listen to Shaitan,
    Can we be good? Oh yes we can!
    In the Month of Ramadan.

    Can we love Allah? Oh yes we can!
    It is the Month of Ramadan.
    We pray after the Azaan,
    We strengthen our Eman,
    Can we love Allah? Oh yes we can!
    It is the Month of Ramadan.

    Can we learn? Oh yes we can!
    It is the Month of Ramadan.
    We read lots of the Qur'an,
    We give Zakat to the poor man,
    Can we learn? Oh yes we can!
    In the Month of Ramadan.

    Am I Muslim? Oh yes I am!
    It is the Month of Ramadan.

    We eat when Allah says we can,
    We do not do what has been banned,
    We are good for Dad and Mam,
    We do not listen to Shaitan,

    We pray after the Azaan,
    We strengthen our Eman,
    We read lots of the Qur'an,
    We give Zakat to the poor man,
    Am I Muslim? Oh yes I am!
    In the Holy Month of Ramadan.

    Submitted October 27, 2006


    1 comment
  • “As-salámu ‘alaikum wa rahmatul láhi wa barakátuh!”
    Bismillah Ar Rahman Ar Raheem

    Allah: The One

    Do you know Allah made the Universe and everything in it?
    He is the One who owns it and looks after it.
    Only He can make a planet or a star,
    Make light from the Sun reach us from so far.

    Allah is Perfect, He needs no one.
    He has no father, no mother or son.
    But we need Him totally. Have you ever wondered why?
    He gives life to everyone and He makes them die.

    Just so you can breathe he gives you air;
    Eyes and ears to see and hear;
    A tongue to taste and teeth to chew,
    The yummy foods He gives to you.

    Hands for holding and legs for walking;
    A brain for thinking and mouth for talking.
    Allah gave you a heart to love,
    And many other gifts you can't think of.

    Allah made people to worship Him every day.
    He sent many Prophets to show them the way.
    Peace be upon Muhammad; he was the last one.
    Allah's Messenger (S) sent with the Holy Qur'an.

    Glory be to Allah and all praise is for Him,
    Only He is Great and there is no god but Him.
    If you love the Qur'an and follow the Sunnah.
    Allah has made you a Garden called Jannah.

    Pray your Salah and be good to others too,
    When you remember Allah, He remembers you.
    Do you know when you hear or recite the Qur'an,
    Allah is telling you that He is the One


    your comment
  • Bismillahir Rahmanir Raheem, All Praise is due to Alláh.

    O Allah! I ask of You integrity and soundness in my religion, my life, my family, and my possessions.

    O Allah! Cover my shame, pacify my fears, guard me from what is in front of me and behind me, from what is on my right and on my left, over my head and under my feet.

    O Allah! Grant health to my body. O Allah grant health to my hearing. O Allah! Grant health to my sight. There is no deity except You.

    O Allah! I seek refuge in You from unbelief and poverty, and from the punishment of the grave. There is no Deity except You.

    O Allah! You are my Lord. There is no deity except You. You are my Creator and I am your creature. I try to keep my covenant with You and to live in the hope of Your promise as well as I can. I seek refuge in You from my one evil deeds. I acknowledge Your favours to me; and I acknowledge my sins. Forgive me my sins, for there is no one who can forgive sins except You.

    O Allah! I seek refuge in You from worry and sorrow. I seek refuge in You from impotence and sloth, from stinginess and cowardice, and I seek refuge in You from the burden of debt and from being humbled be men.

    O Allah! Make the beginning of this day good, the middle prosperous, and the end successful. I ask You to grant me the good of this world and of the Hereafter, O Most Merciful of all Who show us mercy!

    O Allah! I ask you to make me pleased with what You decreed for me return to good life after death, and I earnestly seek the pleasure of looking at Your Glorious Countenance and the craving to meet you, without distress or affliction or misguiding trial. I seek refuge in You from oppressing others or being oppressed, from doing wrong or suffering wrong, and from committing an error or a sin, which you will not forgive.

    O Allah! I seek refuge in You from the feebleness of old age. O Allah! Guide me to the best of deeds and the best of morals, as none can guide to the best except You, and save me from bad deeds, as none can save me from what is bad except You. O Allah! Strengthen my faith, expand my living space and bless me in my livelihood.

    O Allah! I seek refuge in You from negligence, degradation and destitution; I seek refuge in You from unbelief, wickedness, vanity and show; and I seek refuge in You from blindness, deafness and leprosy and bad diseases.

    O Allah! Give my soul piety and my conscience purity. You are the Master of my soul and the Guardian of my conscience.

    O Allah! I seek refuge in You from a knowledge, which does not benefit, from a heart, which does not tremble, from an ego, which is not stated, and from a supplication, which is not accepted.

    O Allah! I seek refuge in You from the evil of what I did and from the evil of what I did not do; from the evil of what I know and from the evil of what I did not know.

    O Allah! I seek refuge in You from a decline in Your favour, from a change in Your protection, from Your sudden punishment and all Your displeasure.

    Allahummaa Ameeen....'(


    your comment
  • Royal Holloway University of London 25th May 2007.

    “As-salámu 'alaikum wa rahmatul láhi wa barakátuh!”

    “A-úthu billáhi minash shaytánir rajeem. Bismilláhir rahmánir raheem.

    Al hamdu lillahi nahmaduhu wanasta’eenahu, wanastagh-firuhu, wanatoobu ilayhi,
    wana’oothu Billaahi min shuroori an-fusinaa, wamin sayyi aati a’maalinaa. May- Yahdillahu fa huwal muhtad, wa may- yudlill falan tajidaa lahu waliyan murshida. Wa ash-hadu an Laa ilaaha ill-Alláh, wahdahoo laa shareeka lah, wa ash-hadu anna Muhammadan ‘abduhoo

    All Praise is due to Alláh, We praise Him and we seek help from Him. We ask forgiveness from Him. We repent to Him; and we seek refuge in Him from our own evils and our own bad deeds. Anyone who is guided by Alláh, he is indeed guided; and anyone who has been
    left astray, will find no one to guide him. I bear witness that there is no god but Alláh, the Only One without any partner; and I bear witness that Muhammad, sws, is His servant, and His messenger.

    Bismillahir Rahmanir Raheem! Ya Ay-yuhal-latheena ‘aamanut taqul-laaha, haqqa tuqaatihee wala tamu tun-na, il-la wa antum Muslimoon.”

    O You who believe, - Fear Allah, as He should be feared, and die not except as Muslims.

    Ya Ay-yuhal-latheena ‘aamanut taqul-laaha, wa qooloo qawlan sadeedaa. Yuslih-lakum a’maalakum wa yaghfir lakum thunoobakum, wamay yu-til-laaha warasoolah, faqad faaza fawzan atheemaa.”

    O You who believe, - Be aware of Allah, and speak a straightforward word. He will forgive your sins and repair your deeds. And whoever takes Allah and His prophet as a guide, has already achieved a mighty victory…

    My respected Brothers and Sisters,

    I recently visited South Africa, where Muslims have lived as a tiny minority, [less than 5%] for over 300 years. For the first 150 years, Islam was a banned religion in that country, and if you were caught trying to convert others to Islam, you faced the death penalty. Even when Islam was legally recognised, Muslims were still treated as second class citizens. For the next 150 years, they could not vote until Nelson Mandela was freed from prison in 1989, and became State President of a non-racial South Africa. Three centuries of hardship produces a certain calibre of Muslim. When you are treated unjustly, when your faith is in danger, and when you have no legal protection for your human rights, then you really seek Allah’s help, and you are drawn closer to your God.

    Now that South Africa is free, there are other challenges. Muslims have survived the oppression, but are they surviving the freedom? The answer is far from clear. There are simply so many distractions and opportunities for Shaytaan to do his work. There is a huge difference between the rich and the poor, and the gap widens by the day. Crime, gambling and financial debt along with the breakdown of family life, drug and alcohol abuse, have become serious problems over there. Does this sound familiar? It’s a problem over here also. Brothers and Sisters, these are worldwide problems of modern life. These are the challenges we all face, inside and outside the Muslim communities. We say that here in the West, we are free. But free for what? We may be politically free to think and speak and write and vote as we please. But are we really free from crime? Are we free from financial debt? And, most importantly, are we free from the burning desire to have those things that distract our attention from Allah, swt? Are we free from the misguidance of Shaytaan, from greed, envy, and the love of material things? These are questions we must answer.

    Has our political freedom made us better Muslims? Have we come closer to Allah than our
    forefathers were? If Prophet Muhammad sws were to visit Britain today, would he be proud to see the condition of his followers here? Brothers and Sisters, many of us have suffered hardship just to get here to Britain; but the bigger challenge remains: now that we are here, can we survive the freedom without damaging our faith and our moral values?

    Here in Britain as in South Africa and elsewhere in the West, the success of Muslims in politics, business and the professions is well known. Muslims in private and public life are making a big contribution to their country’s progress. For the small numbers that we represent, we are punching well above our weight. But there are some worrying
    tendencies. We’ve become so materialistic. Our lives are centred on trivial and silly things. We must have that new car, those designer clothes and all the latest gizmos and gadgets. Some of us really believe those adverts that promise so much pleasure, but they deliver so little lasting happiness.

    With pressures from all sides, inside and outside, how can we ensure that we and our children and grandchildren will hold fast to Allah’s rope, and stay united? How can we survive the freedom and prosperity even better than we survived the difficulties
    in our countries of birth?


    Brothers and Sisters, there’s something about human nature we must understand. We human beings are not evil by nature, but we are forgetful, and our forgetfulness can lead us to do wrong. Allah made us that way. We are easily distractible, and we only remember Allah with effort and practice. We remember Allah mostly when we are in danger, when fear grips our hearts. That’s why they say there are no atheists on a sinking ship, or a plane that’s making an emergency landing. Even atheists and agnostics quickly find God when death stares them in the face. But when the plane lands safely, or the lifeboats rescue the survivors from the sea, how many of us truly turn to Allah in gratitude? In Sura An ‘aam v [6:63] Allah swt asks us a beautiful rhetorical question:

    “Say: Who is it that delivers you from the dark recesses of land and sea, when
    you call upon Allah in humility and silent terror, saying: If only Allah would deliver us safely from these dangers, we vow we shall truly show our gratitude.”

    Most people are ungrateful, and they forget the Hand of Mercy that reached out to save them from disaster.

    Brothers and sisters, we must thank Allah swt for helping us to keep our Iman and Taqwa intact for all these years. We are politically free, but we must still keep Iman and Taqwa even stronger, to avoid the temptations of shaitaan. We must work hard to ensure that we leave our children a good legacy on which they can build. But life has become so cosy and
    safe for us and some of us don’t think we need Allah’s help as much as we did before.

    We must not be seduced by the attractions of this life, the attractions of dunya, and forget what’s even better, waiting for us in the akhira, in the life to come. In the last verses of Sura Al-A’la:

    “Bal tu’ thiroonal hayaatad dunya. Wal aakhiratu khairu wa ab’qaa!”

    “Behold, you prefer the life of this world, when the life to come is better for you, and more enduring.”

    “Inna ha thaa lafis suhufil oolaaa; suhufee Ebraheema wa Moosa”

    “This has been explained in the earlier Books; the books of Abraham and Moses.”

    Brothers and Sisters, Allah does not want us to be like monks in a monastery, to
    turn away from His favours that He bestows on us from this world. In
    Sura Al Rahmaan He constantly asks us the rhetorical question:

    “Fa bi ayyi aalaa-i-Rabbihumaa tukath thibaan?”

    “Then which of the favours of your Lord will you deny?”

    Allah swt does not want us to deny His favours. He wants us only to put them in their proper place. He wants us to enjoy his favours without forgetting Him. He is he Main
    Agenda. His favours are only the bonuses. The material benefits of this world, the nice car, the big house, the clever gadgets we play with, these are only the by-products of our Ibaadah, of worshipping Allah swt. They should come incidentally, not intentionally. It’s not the main agenda. The main agenda is to remember Allah at every moment, with love and gratitude. When we put Allah first, at all times, then he sends us all these comforts and conveniences both as a test for gratitude and as a bonus. So let us not be distracted by the bonuses, the by products of worship, and forget the main agenda. Let us be Allah-aware at all times. 

    All praise is due to Alláh, the Lord of all the Worlds; may the greetings and peace be upon the best messenger, Muhammad, the unlettered prophet; and upon his family and upon all of his companions. Amma ba’ad, And, after this,

    Behold, Alláh and his angels shower blessings on the Prophet. O you who believe! Ask for blessings on him, and salute him with a worthy greeting.

    O Alláh! Send your greetings upon Muhammad and his family, just as you sent your greetings on Abraham, and his family. O Alláh, send your blessings on Muhammad and his family, just as you blessed Abraham and his family. In both worlds, you are
    praiseworthy and exalted."

    Alhamdu lillahi Rabbil ‘Aalameen. Was-salaatu was-salaamu alaa Khairil mursaleen. Muhammadin-nabeey-yil Ummiy-yee, wa-‘alaa aalihee, wasah-bihee, aj-ma’een.

    Ammaa ba’ad:

    Innalláha wa malaaikata yusallúna alan nabi. Yá ay yuhal latheena ámanu sallú alayhi wasalli mú tas leema. Allahumma salli alá Muhammad, wa ala áli Muhammad, kama salayta ala Ibrahim, wa ala ali Ibrahim. Allahumma barik ala Muhammad, wa alaa áli Muhammad, kama barakta ala Ibrahim, wa ala ali ibrahim. Fil ála meen, innaka hameedun

    Part Two:

    Sub' hanallahi wal hamdu lillah, wala hawla wala quwwata illah billah yu althi yual theem.

    "All glory is for Allah, and all praise is for Allah; There is no power and no strength except with Allah."

    My respected brothers and sisters,

    The Holy Quran reminds us, “Wa thikrul-Laahi Akbar,” “And Remembrance of Allah is the greatest thing in life,”. It’s not just good enough to remember Allah in the Masjid or when we’re making salaah at home or when we make du'ah. We must keep ourselves in that state of Allah-awareness all the time, 24/7. Our connection with our Lord must be like one of those broadband internet connections that’s always on, always connected. We shouldn’t be like old dial-up modems that sometimes work, but mostly give problems. Our spiritual life should influence all our worldly affairs. Our Salaah, du'ah and dhikr must not be disconnected from our family relations, our business affairs or social life. This is wrong.

    When we put our heads down in prayer, we are especially close to Allah swt. When we worship sincerely, then He is closer to us than our jugular vein. We should try to keep this mindset, this state of intimacy with Allah swt beyond our prayer time, and let it guide us through our many dealings at work, at leasure and in our own homes. This is especially important when we deal with other people. Don’t lie, don’t cheat, don’t
    back-bite. Allah’s watching us, 24/7.

    If we can remember Allah in good times and bad, in illness and health, in youth and old age, day and night, winter and summer, Allah will remember us also, and He will shower his blessings, His barakah, on all our actions. I’d like to share one of my favourite Hadith to illustrate this point:

    “Remember Allah in times of ease, and He will recognise you in times of distress. What hit you could not have missed you. What missed you could not have hit you. Remember that victory comes with patience, relief comes with affliction, and ease comes after hardship.

    “Fa innama al usri yusraa; Innama al usri yusraa.”

    After every hardship comes relief, truly, after every hardship comes relief.

    Let us keep ourselves focussed, heart and soul, on remembrance of Allah. Let our busy lives never detract from this remembrance. Let every thought and every action become blessed with the barakah of Allah. In a recent newspaper article, a western journalist defined Barakah as a unique quality of being blessed and being the channel of blessings at the same time.

    May Allah give us this special quality of barakah, to be blessed and to pass His blessings through us to others. May Allah through his ever wondrous and mysterious ways, illuminate our lives so that we can be a light for ourselves, our families and for our wider communities. May we not only survive the freedom of western society with our faith
    intact, but may Allah increase that faith constantly.

    Ameen. Aqeemus salaah!


    your comment
  • “As-salámu ‘alaikum wa rahmatul láhi wa barakátuh!”
    Bismillah Ar Rahman Ar Raheem

    Phrases for muslims:

    Every Muslim should remember these essential expressions.
    Note: Spellings may vary when translated to English

    These expressions are mostly singular. For example to say ‘Jazak(i) Allahu Khair” to
    more than one person you would ‘Jazakum Allahu Khairan’ and to say ‘Barak Allahu
    feek(i)” to more than one person is “Barak Allahu Feekum”
    Masculine: Jazak Allahu Khair
    Feminine: Jazaki Allahu Khair
    Plural: Jazakum Allahu Khair

    Colour Key: Say

    Assalamu ‘Alaikum
    when you meet a muslim
    Translation: Peace be upon you
    Wa’alaikum Assalam
    a Muslim greets you
    Translation: And peace be upon you

    Assalamu ‘alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh
    formal and great greeting to a Muslim
    Translation: May the peace, mercy, and blessings of Allah be upon you
    Wa’alaikum assalam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh
    a Muslim greets you
    Translation: And peace and mercy and blessings of Allah be upon you
    Hiyyak Allah
    When greeting someone after Salaams
    Translation: May Allah greet you (lit. May Allah preserve your life)

    Bismillah arRahman arRahim
    before making a beginning
    Translation: In the name of Allah, most Gracious most Merciful

    Jazakum Allah Khairan
    for expression of thanks
    Translation: May Allah reward you with blessings
    (Reply: Wa iyak(i), wa iyakum; Trans. And you

    BarakAllahu feekum or Allah baraka feek(i)
    responding to someone’s thanks/ a way of expressing thanks
    Translation: May Allah bless you
    (Reply: Wa feek(i), Wa feekum; Trans.: And you)

    Fi Amanillah
    by way of saying good-bye
    Translation: May Allah protect you

    for praising something
    Translation: Glory be to Allah

    Insha Allah
    for expressing a desire to do something
    Translation: If Allah wills/Through Allah’s will

    Repenting for sins before Allah
    I beg Allah for forgiveness

    Masha Allah
    for expressing appreciation of something good
    Translation: As Allah has willed/Praise be to Allah

    for showing gratitude to Allah after success or even after completing anything
    Translation: Thanks be to Allah

    the end of a Dua or prayer
    Translation: May it be so

    Sallahu ‘alayhi wa salaam
    whenever say the name of Prophet Muhammad
    Translation: Peace be upon him (S.A.W.)
    ‘Alayhi salaam
    whenever say the name of a prophet
    Translation: Peace be upon him (A.S.)

    Radi Allah ‘Anhu
    whenever say name of male companion of the Prophet (Sahabi)
    Translation: May Allah be pleased with him (R.A.)

    Radi Allah ‘Anha
    whenever say name of female companion of the Prophet
    Translation: May Allah be pleased with her (R.A.)

    Radi Allah ‘Anhum
    Plural form of saying companions of the Prophet
    Translation: May Allah be pleased with them (R.A.)

    Innaa lillaahi wa innaa ilayhi raaji’oon
    this is uttered as an expression upon hearing the news of some loss or some one’s death
    Translation: To Allah we belong and to Him is our return
    aathama allahu ajrakom
    uttered to family of deceased
    Translation: may Allah make your ajer (reward) great
    Shakar Allahu Sa’yikum
    uttered to people who attend aaza - when friends go to send condolences upon death of a
    Translation: May Allah accept that your effort

    La hawla wala quwata illah billah
    during the time of troubles

    Translation: There is no strength nor power except Allah
    A few more:
    Tawakkal-tu-’ala-Allah- I have put my trust in Allah-rely on Allah solving a problem
    Tawkkalna-’ala-Allah - we have put our trust in Allah - waiting for a problem to be

    Rahimahullah - Allah have Mercy on him - you see someone in distress

    Na’uzhu-bi-Allah - we seek refuge in Allah - showing your dislike

    Fi sabeel illah - in/for Allah’s cause/way - you give charity/help people

    Ittaqillah-fear Allah- you see someone doing a bad deed

    Hayyak Allah - Allah maintain your life - you greet someone

    Hasbi Allah - Allah will suffice me - you are in a difficult situation

    Azhak Allah sinnaka - May Allah keep you cheerful - you seek another Muslim with
    cheerful countenance


    your comment

    Follow this section's article RSS flux
    Follow this section's comments RSS flux