Synopsis of the Friday Sermon delivered by Ameer Mustapha Elturk on March 22, 2013
Be a Stranger in this World
Ibn `Umar (RA) relates that the Prophet (SAW) placed his hand on his shoulder and said: “Be in the world as if you were a stranger or a wayfarer.” In essence, this hadith explains to us the relationship between us and this world (duniya). Allah (SWT) put us in this world for a purpose, and this purpose was told to us through another hadith that says,
“The world is sweet and green (alluring) and verily Allah is going to install you as successors (vicegerents) in it in order to see how you act…” Allah has set us on a path and instructed us what to do. He requires us (1) to worship Him; (2) to call people unto Him; (3) to establish His Kingdom, here on earth, and (4) to construct Islam. These are divine targets for people in general and for Muslims in particular. Hence, there is plenty of work to be done. We should be serious and not get distracted by this tempting world. It is for this reason that the Prophet (SAW) told us to live in this world as strangers...Read more
Synopsis of the Friday Sermon delivered by Ameer Mustapha Elturk on March 01, 2013
Follow the Straight Path
In continuation of the previous khutbas related to the construction of Islam, let us understand that the first of the three levels of the structure of Islam consists of the roof and four walls. The roof may be said to be representing complete and sincere servitude to Allah (‘ubudiyyatu lillahi ta’ala). The four walls may be thought to be denoting Islam, taqwa (God-consciousness), ita’ah (obedience), and ‘ibadah (worship). The wall representing Islam needs an entrance, and that entrance can be no other than Islam itself...Read more
Synopsis of the Friday Sermon delivered by Ameer Mustapha Elturk on Feb 22, 2013
Faith and Steadfastness
There was a discussion in last Friday’s sermon on the structure of Islam based on the hadith, “Islam is built on five (things): testifying that there is no deity worthy of worship except Allah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah, establishing the salah (prayer), paying the zakah (obligatory charity), making the hajj (pilgrimage) to the House, and fasting in Ramadan.”...Read more
Synopsis of the Friday Sermon delivered by Ameer Mustapha Elturk on Feb 15, 2003
Islam is Built on Five
A well-known hadith, the essence of which is familiar to most Muslims states, “Islam is built on five (things): testifying that there is no deity worthy of worship except Allah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah, establishing the salah (prayer), paying the zakah (obligatory charity), making the hajj (pilgrimage) to the House, and fasting in Ramadan.”...Read more
Synopsis of the Friday Sermon delivered by Ameer Mustapha Elturk on Feb 01, 2013
Islam Iman & Ihsan (Part 5)
Today’s khutba is the fifth and concluding one in a series of khutbas delivered earlier on Hadith Jibril and the three levels of faith—Islam, iman, and ihsan referred to therein. The khutba today will focus mainly on discussing the last part of the hadith that alludes to the ‘Hour’ or the Day of Reckoning. The part of Hadith Jibril relating to the Hour says, “He (Jibril) said, ‘Inform me about the Hour.’ He (the Messenger of Allah) said, ‘About that, the one questioned knows no more than the questioner.’ So he said, ‘Well, inform me about the signs thereof (i.e. of its coming).’ He said, ‘They are that the slave-girl will give birth to her mistress, that you will see the barefooted ones, the naked, the destitute, the herdsmen of the sheep (competing with each other) in raising lofty buildings.’"... Read more
Synopsis of the Friday Sermon delivered by Ameer Mustapha Elturk on Jan 25, 2013
Islam Iman & Ihsan (Part 4)
Today’s khutba is the fourth one in the series of khutbas delivered previously on the subject of Islam, iman, and ihsan, and will focus mainly on the topic of ihsan. What does the word ihsan mean? It means perfection or excellence. It is derived from the Arabic root letters ha-seen-noon (ح س ن). It conveys two meanings: (1) to do something good to someone else, and (2) to do something at the level of perfection or itqan. According to a hadith, “Allah loves to see one's job done at the level of itqan (perfection).” Some people have the misconception that ihsan is restricted to the modes of worship. As a matter of fact, ihsan implies doing anything fee sabilillah in the best possible way.. Read more
Synopsis of the Friday Sermon delivered by Ameer Mustapha Elturk on Jan 18, 2013
Islam Iman & Ihsan (Part 3)
Today’s khutba is a continuation of the previous khutba that discussed Hadith Jibril on the subject of Islam, iman, and ihsan. The discussion will focus on the topic of divine destiny or decree (qadar), which constitutes the sixth article of faith (iman). The concept of qadar, although philosophical and esoteric in nature, becomes less obscure and easier to understand when we take recourse to the abundant guidance provided on this subject in the Qur’an, the ahadith, and the sayings of the sahaba (athar)... Read more
Synopsis of the Friday Sermon delivered by Ameer Mustapha Elturk on Jan 4, 2013
Islam Iman & Ihsan (Part 2)
Today’s khutba is a continuation of the previous khutba that discussed ayah 93 of Surat al-Ma’idah and Hadith Jibril. We learnt from the ayah about the three levels of deen (maratib al-deen) or the three levels of faith (iman). One’s iman or faith may be (1) at the level of Islam (2) at the level of iman or (3) at the level of ihsan. These three elements constitute the essence of the Islamic faith. As for the hadith under discussion, what appears to be strange is that Jibril (AS) himself came in the form of a man to teach the companions (sahaba) their religion. Strangely enough, even though this incident took place in the latter part of the Prophet’s life, it had not dawned upon the sahaba despite their having spent good time with him to ask him these fundamental questions, “What is Islam?” What is iman?” and “What is ihsan?”...Read more
Synopsis of the Friday Sermon delivered by Ameer Mustapha Elturk on Dec 28, 2012
Islam, Iman, and Ihsan (Part 1)
“Those who believe and do good deeds will not be blamed for what they may have consumed (in the past) as long as they are mindful of God (have taqwa), believe and do good deeds, and continue to be mindful of God (having more taqwa) and believe, and grow ever more mindful of God (having even more taqwa) and perfect their faith (Ihsan): God loves the Muhsineen (those who strive to perfect their faith)” (al-Ma’idah, 5:93). What is inferred from this ayah of Surat al-Ma’idah is that there are three different levels of deen (maratib al-deen). One’s iman or faith may be (1) at the level of Islam (legal iman), (2) at the level of personal conviction, i.e., iman in the heart, or (3) at the level of ihsan, which is the highest level of iman... Read more
Synopsis of the Friday Sermon delivered by Ameer Mustapha Elturk on Dec 7, 2012
Purity of Intention - Part 1
The subject matter of today’s khutba is purity of intention in our actions. There is a hadith that highlights the importance of sincerity of intention (ikhlas al-niyyah) in all our actions. This hadith is so significant that most of the classical scholars of hadith (mhaddithun) begin their collection of ahadith with this particular hadith: It is narrated on the authority of Amirul Mu'minin, Abu Hafs 'Umar bin al-Khattab (RA), who said: I heard the Messenger of Allah (SAW) say: “Actions are (judged) by motives (niyyah), so each man will have what he intended. Thus, he whose migration (hijrah) was to Allah and His Messenger, his migration is to Allah and His Messenger; but he whose migration was for some worldly gain, or for a wife he might marry, his migration is to that for which he migrated.”...Reade more
Synopsis of the Friday Sermon delivered by Ameer Mustapha Elturk on Nov. 16, 2012
The reality of tawbah (repentance) can be understood from a hadith, which says, “Every son of Adam is a sinner, and the best of sinners are those who repent.” While tawbah generally means seeking forgiveness from Allah (SWT), it literally means “to return” implying returning back to Allah (SWT) by seeking His forgiveness for our sins; by pledging to Him that we would refrain from all sins, and that we would take to the straight path....Read more
Synopsis of the Friday Sermon delivered by Ameer Mustapha Elturk on November 23, 2012:
Death is a subject that people often avoid to talk about, much less remember it. The Qur’an alludes to death at various places. For instance, in Surat Aal ‘Imran, we have, “Every soul will taste death and you will be paid in full only on the Day of Resurrection. Whoever is kept away from the Fire and admitted to the Garden will have triumphed. The present world is only an illusory pleasure” (Aal ‘Imran, 3:185)....Read more
Synopsis of the Friday Sermon delivered by Ameer Mustapha Elturk on Oct 12, 2012
The Ten Commandments (Part 10)
Today’s khutba is the conclusion of a series of khutbas delivered earlier on the Qur’anic version of the Ten Commandments are contained in the Qur’an in Surat Surat al-Isra’ (Bani Israel). Nine of the Ten Commandments have been discussed so far. The topic of today’s khutba will focus on the tenth commandment, which has to do with maintaining modesty, humility, and humbleness. “And do not walk on the earth arrogantly; you cannot break it open, nor reach the mountains in height”(al-Isra’, 17:37). This ayah indicates that our gait or manner of walking should not reflect arrogance or pride in anyway. The way one walks speaks a lot about one’s personality....Read more
Synopsis of the Friday Sermon delivered by Ameer Mustapha Elturk on Oct 5, 2012
The Ten Commandments (Part 9)
Today’s khutba is the continuation of a series of khutbas delivered earlier on the Qur’anic version of the Ten Commandments that were revealed to Musa (AS) and are contained in the Qur’an in Surat al-Isra’ (Surat Bani Israel). Eight of the Ten Commandments have been discussed before. Briefly the Ten Commandments are: (1) Not to ascribe partners with God; (2) To show respect and kindness towards one’s parents; (3) To maintain the ties of kith and kin; (4) Not to kill one’s children for fear of poverty; (5) Not to engage in any illicit sexual relationship; (6) Not to commit murder; (7) To protect the property of orphans, and to fulfill covenants and contracts; (8) To exercise justice in using weights and measures; (9) Not to pursue what we have no knowledge of; and (10) To maintain modesty, humility, and humbleness. The topic of today’s khutbah will focus on the ninth commandment....Read more
Synopsis of the Friday Sermon delivered by Ameer Mustapha Elturk on
The Prophet is under Attack
The recent movie ‘Innocence of Muslimsa’ produced in the United States and the cartoons published by a French magazine have sparked an outrage among the Muslims across the globe. It seems that under the cover of ‘freedom of speech,’ both these provocative media presentations have been directed to defame and denigrate the Prophet Muhammad (SAW) and play with the religious sentiments of Muslims. This anti-Islam and anti-Prophet imagery has resulted in violent protests, deaths, and injuries in several cities around the world. We regret the loss of lives and send our heart-felt condolences to the bereaved families. ...Read more
Responding to the Call of Allah (SWT)
The blessed month of Ramadan has just left us. Alhamdulillah, we concluded the obligatory fasting prescribed in it. Ramadan uplifted our spirits through tarawih, tahajjud and other nawafil prayers. It taught us to be patient, forgiving, and charitable. It gave us an opportunity to recite Allah (SWT)’s Book and develop a close personal relationship with Him. We begged Him to forgive our sins, fulfill our needs, and respond to our calls. Addressing the Prophet (SAW), Allah (SWT) says, “If My servants ask you about Me, I am near. I respond to those who call Me, so let them respond to Me, and believe in Me, so that they may be guided” (al-Baqarah, 2:186). This is what we hoped for throughout the month of Ramadan. ...Read more
The Mosque - An Islamic Institution
It appears that we had just greeted Ramadan and now we are bidding farewell to it. We are fortunate that Allah (SWT) made us reach this Ramadan to enable us to benefit from its rigorous month long program of fasting, praying, spending in charity, reinforcing brotherhood and sisterhood, and congregating in His house to glorify Him and remember Him day and night. Indeed, we have to praise Allah (SWT) for giving us this great opportunity, and for guiding us. The Qur’an mentions how the people of paradise will praise Allah (SWT) while entering paradise. “Praise be to Allah who has guided us to this! We would not have been guided, had Allah not guided us” (al-A’raf, 7:43)....Read more
Spending in the Path of Allah
Ramadan is one of the best months of the year. As its name suggests, it is the month that burns away sins. It is not only the month of fasting but also the month of the Qur’an. It is the month of compassion, piety, patience, forgiveness, and thankfulness to Allah (SWT). It is also the month of spending in charitable causes, simply to attain the pleasure of Allah (SWT). Our beloved prophet Muhammad (SAW) was charitable throughout his life, but one finds him still more charitable during the month of Ramadan. The rewards of acts of charity during Ramadan are multiplied manifolds over—more than any other time. ...Read more
Nifaq (Hypocrisy) – Part 1
The topic of today’s khutba is nifaq or hypocrisy; a subject that is very important to understand; particularly in the times we live in. There are ayaat in Surat al-Baqarah that describe some of the attributes of the hypocrites. From its very start, Surat al-Baqarah begins by identifying three distinct categories of people: the believers (al-mu’minun), the disbelievers (al-kafirun), and the hypocrites (al-munafiqun). ...Read more
The Qur’anic Concept of Virtue (Part 5)
Today’s khutba is the fifth and concluding one in the series of khutbas that have focused on the discussion of ayat al-Birr. As we know, this ayah combines and enumerates beliefs and acts of righteousness and obedience of real virtuous and righteous believers. The topic under discussion today is about another quality, which righteous believers possess, and that is their patience and endurance in times of calamities, hardships, adversities, conflicts and dangers. Ayat al-Birr describes them as those “who are steadfast in misfortune, adversity, and times of conflict (and war)” (al-Baqarah, 2:177).
The Qur’anic Concept of Virtue (Part 4)
Today’s khutba is a continuation of our discussion of ayat al-Birr that gives us the most comprehensive Qur’anic concept of real virtue and piety. Al-Birr (real virtue and piety) combines beliefs and all acts of righteousness and obedience, both inward and outward. Whoever has these qualities is indeed the righteous believer who will succeed with Allah (SWT). The ayah deals with leading a balanced life and outlines the practical manifestation of belief in Allah, belief in the hereafter, and belief in the institution of prophethood. Such beliefs are demonstrated through acts of kindness and sympathy toward fellow human beings, observing Allah’s rights of salah and zakah, honoring and fulfilling pledges, and being steadfast in times of hardships and conflicts. Read more...
The Qur’anic Concept of Virtue (Part 3)
In continuation of our discussion of ayat al-Birr that gives us the Qur’anic concept of real virtue and piety, the previous khutba on this topic had focused on ablution (wudu) and prayer (salah), indicating some of the common errors made by some people while putting these modes of worship into practice. Today’s khutba will focus on the obligatory charity (zakah). It will touch upon the meaning and significance of zakah, the recipients of zakah, and some misconceptions about zakah. These issues will be discussed within the Qur’anic concept of wealth. Read more...
The Qur’anic Concept of Virtue (Part 2)
“Goodness (virtue/piety) does not consist in turning your face towards East or West. The truly good are those who believe in God and the Last Day, in the angels, the Scripture, and the prophets; who give away some of their wealth, however much they cherish it, to their relatives, to orphans, the needy, travelers and beggars, and to liberate those in bondage; those who keep up the prayer and pay the prescribed alms; who keep pledges whenever they make them; who are steadfast in misfortune, adversity, and times of danger. These are the ones who are true, and it is they who are aware of God” ((al-Baqarah, 2:177).Read more...
The Qur’anic Concept of Virtue – Part 1
Muslims are going through very difficult times. They are being subjected to abject humiliation. This is not necessarily a new or recent phenomenon but has been around for decades. Why is it so? What is the way out of this predicament? What does it take for a Muslim to live an honorable and distinguished life? All what has come to the Muslims is their own doing. Most certainly, Allah (SWT) is not unjust to His servants. “That is on account of what you stored up for yourselves with your own hands: God is never unjust to His servants” (Aal ‘Imran, 3:182). The Muslim population is huge, but there are not many Muslims who are genuinely concerned about the sufferings and plight of their Muslim brothers and sisters around the world or who are doing something to bring about a positive change. Most of them are only chasing duniya and are indifferent to the hard times others may be going through. Some of them may even sell themselves and their deen for petty worldly gains. Read more...
Satan - The Devil (Know your Enemy) Part 3
After Satan was cursed and cast out of heaven because of his disobedience to Allah (SWT), he swore by Allah‟s majesty and honor that he would do whatever he could within his means to deceive the progeny of Adam. “Then I will come at them, from in front of them and behind them, from their right and from their left. You will not find most of them thankful” (al-A‟raf, 7:17).
Allah (SWT) had revealed to the angels that he would be making a khalifah on earth. “And (mention) when your Lord said to the angels, ´I am going to place a vicegerent on the earth‟…” (al-Baqarah, 2:30). This khalifah would be Adam. A khalifah is one who represents God on earth by acting according to the Divine Will, by upholding and maintaining God‟s kingdom here on earth, and by ruling justly among people. Imam al-Qurtubi and other scholars infer from this ayah that the role of a khalifah among other responsibilities is to pass judgments between people on matters of dispute, to aid the oppressed against the oppressor, to forbid evil and to implement the Shariah. While khalifah literally means a successor, by extension, it also means one who acts justly among people in accordance with the truth. In addressing Dawud (AS), He (SWT) says, “O Dawud! We have made you a vicegerent (kahlifah) on earth, so judge between people in truth and do not follow vain desires, lest it divert you from the Way of Allah…” (Saad, 38:26). It is in that context the khilafah of Adam may be understood...Read more.
Satan - The Devil (Know your Enemy) Part 10
This is the tenth and concluding khutba on the topic ‘Satan - The Devil (Know your Enemy)’. These khutbas have been delivered to remind us of our sworn enemy—Satan. From the previous khutbas, we have seen how Satan gains controls over Allah’s servants and invites them to be on his side so that they stand to lose and become his companions in hell.
The first step towards guarding ourselves against Satan is to treat him as an enemy. In order to overcome him and to avoid falling into his trap, we have first to understand that there are two Satans—the one within us and the one outside. According to a Hadith, the Prophet said, "With every one of you there is a devil." The Companions asked, “Is there a devil even with you?” The Prophet said, “Yes, but Allah has granted me protection against him.” According to another version, he replied, “Allah has helped me, and the devil has submitted to me (i.e., he became a Muslim).” In another hadith, the Prophet (SAW) said, “Verily, Satan flows in the bloodstream of Adam's descendents.” This is the first Satan we have to be aware of. We should control him rather than be controlled by him. How to go about doing this? We should seek Allah’s help in the same manner the Prophet (SAW) sought help from Allah (SWT) throughout his whole entire life, and Allah (SWT) helped him. But there is another Satan, and that is Iblis, along with his progeny and his agents from the humankind (ins) and the genie (jinn), and they are spread out everywhere...Read more
Satan - The Devil (Know your Enemy) Part 9
“Satan has gained control over them and made them forget God. They are on Satan’s side, and Satan’s side will be the losers” (al-Mujadilah, 58:19).
To achieve his goal, Satan first lures mankind into shirk (polytheism) and kufr (disbelief), such as visiting graves and invoking the dead or saints for help, practicing magic, etc. because associating partners with Allah is the greatest sin. “Like when Shaytan says to man, 'Disbelieve in Allah.' But when (man) disbelieves in Allah, Satan, 'I am free of you, I fear Allah, the Lord of the worlds”(al-Hashr, 59:16). If Satan overcomes the son of Adam with this and succeeds to make him a disbeliever, then he is satisfied and pleased.
If he cannot manage to deceive people into committing shirk and kufr, he does not give up. He causes people to follow bidah (innovations) and take them as their religion like celebrating Mawlid, celebrating the night of Isra wa al-Mi’raj, celebrating 15th Sha’ban by fasting and praying and as Sufyan al-Thawri said, “Bidah is more dearer to Shaytan than sin, for, one may repent from sin, but not from bidah.” Because when one sins, he knows that he is disobeying Allah and some time, he may turn to Allah and seek forgiveness and be pardoned. But one, who practices bidah, deems his actions to be a form of worship to Allah and thus never even thinks of repentance...Read more
The Glad Tiding
“They wish to put His light out with their mouths. But He will perfect His light, even though the disbelievers hate it; it is He who sent His Messenger with guidance and the deen of truth to exalt it over every other deen, even though those who associate others with Allah hate it” (al-Saff, 61:8-9).
This ayah of Surat al-Saff is among many other ayat in the Qur’an, which give Muslims the glad tiding that Islam will prevail over other systems of life, however much the disbelievers and polytheists may detest this to happen. ...Read more
Satan - The Devil (Know your Enemy) Part 8
We are informed in Surat al-Mujadilah that Satan has gained control over people and made them forget Allah (SWT). Such people belong to the party of Satan and it is he and his followers who will be the losers. “Satan has gained control over them and made them forget God. They are on Satan’s side, and Satan’s side will be the losers” (al-Mujadilah, 58:19).We have to keep reminding ourselves that Iblis (Satan), the accursed, as a part of his strategy, has avowed to avenge his own doom by deviating the children of Adam from the straight path through all possible means. “And then Iblis said, Because You have put me in the wrong, I will lie in wait for them all on Your straight path. I will come at them- from their front and their back, from their right and their left, and You will find that most of them are ungrateful.” (al-A’raf, 7:16-17). Satan’s assault on man is from all sides. He takes advantage of man’s every weak point and lures him into the snares of evil. He sets snares on the straight way to which Allah (SWT) directs men...Read more
In the Footsteps of the Prophet
It was on the 12th day of Rabi al-Awwal in the year 570 CE that the Prophet Muhammad (SAW) was born. When he reached the age of forty, Allah (SWT) raised him as His final Prophet and Messenger in order to save humanity from all types of darkness it was engulfed in. Muhammad (SAW) not only showed the divinely lit path to success and salvation, but also fulfilled his mission by establishing a system and polity wherein the rule of Allah (SWT) reigned supreme. He also left behind a legacy that true believers hold dear and live with—to lead their lives in the footsteps of the Prophet. Among the many honorific titles attributed to Prophet Muhammad (SAW), there are five of them that are mentioned in Surat al-Ahzab. “O Prophet! We have sent you as a witness, a bearer of good news, a warner, a caller to Allah by His permission, and a lamp spreading light” (al-Ahzab, 33:45-46). ...Read more
Satan - The Devil (Know your Enemy) Part 7
Indeed, we are blessed to be the recipients of Allah’s final Scripture to humankind—the Qur’an. It is only through the Qur’an that we learn about Satan’s devious ploys and his never ending bitter enmity towards all children of Adam. Believers pay heed to every word of the Qur’an and take its message very seriously. The Qur’an declares, “O you who believe, surrender yourselves wholly (Kaffah) unto God, and do not follow in Satan’s footsteps, for he is your sworn enemy” (al-Baqarah, 2:208).
Imam al-Tabari, one of the earliest exegetes of the Qur’an, explained this ayah through the example of the companion Abdullah ibn Salam (RA) and others who previous to their becoming Muslims were profound scholars among the Jews. Since Saturday (Sabbath) was the sacred day of rest in Judaism, they thought of bringing about some sort of synthesis between the two faiths, through which they could continue to honor Sabbath as it was necessary under the Law of Musa (AS) while Islam did not require dishonoring it...Read more
Satan - The Devil (Know your Enemy) Part 6
Adam and Hawwa had the permission of their Lord to avail themselves of all that was at their disposal in the garden except for a tree that they were not allowed to approach. “We said, ‘O Adam, dwell in the garden, you and your wife, and eat freely from it as you wish, but do not go near this tree, or you both become wrongdoers’” (al-Baqarah, 2:35). Satan being the archenemy of Adam did not spare a moment in the pursuit of his avowed goal of leading humans away from the straight path. He went straight ahead to plot against Adam and his wife. He enticed them into eating from the forbidden tree. “He lured them with lies. Their nakedness became exposed to them when they tasted of the tree: they began to put together leaves from the garden to cover themselves. And their Lord called unto them, ‘Did I not forbid you that tree? And say to you (both) that Satan was your sworn enemy? (al-A’raf, 7:22). Adam and Hawwa realized what wrong they had done and were full of ignominy and remorse. They sought Allah’s mercy. Allah (SWT) accepted their repentance and forgave them. They were now to assume their role of becoming Allah’s vicegerents (khulafa’) on earth fulfilling the purpose of their creation by submitting to Him through worship and obedience...Read more
Satan - The Devil (Know your Enemy) Part 5
We must keep reminding ourselves that Satan is our archenemy. He wants us to disobey Allah (SWT) and make us ungrateful to Him. After being cast out of heaven, he had sworn by Allah’s majesty and honor that he would do whatever he could within his means to deceive the children of Adam. He had also declared that most of them would not be grateful and thankful. “You will not find most of them thankful” (al-A’raf, 7:17).
It is a sad fact that Satan has actually misguided most of the human race. “Satan was proved right in his assessment of them, for they followed him except for a group of believers, even though he had no authority over them, so that We may know those who believed in the Hereafter from those who doubt it. And your Lord preserves (and keeps records of) everything” (Saba’, 34:20-21). We are also informed that Satan said, “My Lord, because You misled me, I shall adorn for them (the path of evil) on earth and mislead them all except Your sincere slaves” (al-Hijr, 15:39-40). It is clear from these and other ayat that only the sincere slaves of Allah (SWT) who have conviction (yaqeen) about the Hereafter (al-akhirah) will be protected and saved by Allah (SWT) from being deceived and misguided by Satan...Read more
Satan Threatens You With Poverty
Today’s sermon is in continuation of the earlier three sermons on the subject “Satan – the Devil (Know your Enemy),” and will focus mainly on how Satan threatens us with poverty and dissuades us from spending in the path of Allah (SWT). We are informed in Surat Fatir, “Satan is your enemy; so treat him as an enemy; he only invites his followers that they may become companions of the blazing fire.”(35:6). After Satan was cursed and cast out of heaven because of his disobedience to Allah (SWT), he swore by Allah’s majesty and honor that he would do whatever he could within his means to deceive the progeny of Adam. “And then Iblis said, ‘Because You caused me to deviate, I will lie in ambush for them all on Your straight path, I will come to them, from their front and their back, from their right and their left, and You will find most of them ungrateful (to You).’” (al-A’raf, 7:16-17). To this Allah (SWT) said, “Go! Whoever follows you from them, hell shall be the reward of you (all), a reward well deserved.” (al-Isra’, 17:63). Further, Allah (SWT) sanctioned Satan to use all his tricks of the trade he could to lure men. “Entice, then, whom you can among them with your voice, muster your cavalry and your infantry against them, share their wealth and their children, and make promises to them!” And the promise of Satan is nothing but delusion.” (al-Isra’, 17:64). Thus we see how Satan has stirred up Allah’s servants and in fact has managed to lead them away from the straight path. Read more...
Alhamdulillah, after performing the obligation of Hajj, the pilgrims have now returned safely back from the „Ancient House? (al-bait al-atiq) in Mecca to their homes and families.
According to the Qur?an, “…Pilgrimage to the House is a duty owed to Allah by all who can make their way to it…”(Aal „Imran, 3:97). According to a hadith narrated by Abu Hurairah (RA), the Prophet (SAW) said, “The Umrah to the next Umrah is a kaffarah (expiation) of all sins one commits between them, and an accepted Hajj (al-Hajj al-Mabroor) is a supreme action, the reward for which is paradise. Read More...
The Crotch Bomber
One of the most crucial issues that should engage our immediate attention and thoughtful consideration is to ascertain what goes on in the minds of those Muslim youth who not only profess and practice the ideology of extremism and terrorism, but also consider it to be a sacred religious duty. Hardly two weeks have passed when we learnt about the killing of Anwar al-Awlaki and Samir Khan by the US forces in a drone attack in Yemen, allegedly for propagating and practicing terrorism...Read more.
In Memory of Samir Khan
Today's sermon is in memory of Samir Khan, who along with Anwar al-Awlaki was killed in Yemen by the U.S. forces in a drone attack on September 30, 2011, allegedly for being a terrorist. Samir was personally known to me since the time he was a sweet, bright, and promising kid of eleven. He was a US citizen, born in Saudi Arabia and raised in America.
Samir's story is the story of a devout Muslim who despite peer pressure chose to be faithful to his religion. He was the epitome of a proud Muslim youth bubbling with energy, but disgruntled with the evil, injustice, and hypocrisy prevailing in the society. The energy of the youth if not directed properly often finds its way into destructive channels. One of these paths is that of extremism and militancy...Read more.
Satan - The Devil (Know your Enemy) Part 2
Allah (SWT) recounts the story of Adam and Iblis in seven surahs of the Qur’an. These are: Surat al-Baqarah, Surat al-A’raf, Surat al-Hijr, Surat al-Isra’, Surat al-Kahf, Surat Ta Ha, and Surat Saad. In terms of the order of compilation of the surahs in the Qur’an, the first story appears in Surat al-Baqarah. However, in terms of the chronological order of revelation, the first story appears in Surat al-Hijr. ...Read more
Satan - The Devil (Know your Enemy) Part 1
The sermon today is the first in a series of sermons on a very significant topic that is hardly talked about, and mostly ignored. The topic is: „Satan - the Devil (Know Your Enemy)?. We know through a well known hadith that the shayateen (devils) are chained during the month of Ramadan. The sudden enthusiasm in worshipping and doing charitable deeds in the month of Ramadan and the subsequent decline in the same outside Ramadan goes well to explain the veracity of this hadith. After Ramadan, the shayateen get unchained and become active once again. They start persuading us to stay away from those activities in which we were so fervently and willingly engaged during the month of Ramadan....Read more.
In a hadith narrated by Salman al-Farsi (RA), the Prophet (SAW) addressed his companions on the last day of Sha`ban, saying, "O people! A great month has come over you; a blessed month; a month in which is a night better than a thousand months; a month in which Allah has made it compulsory upon you to fast by day, and voluntary to stand in prayer by night…”
The objective of fasting, as mentioned in the Qur’an is to attain taqwa. “O you who believe, fasting is prescribed for you, as it was prescribed for those before you, so that hopefully you have taqwa” (al-Baqarah, 2:183). To have taqwa means to be conscious and mindful of Allah (SWT). All the prophets and messengers of Allah (SWT) before Muhammad (SAW) used to fast and commanded their people to fast. Read More...
Shari’ah – Part 8 (Farewell Sermon of the Prophet)
There was a discussion in a previous Friday sermon on the issue of human rights and freedom in Islam. This among others included the right to life, right to safety of life, right to respect of chastity of women, right to basic standard of life, right to freedom, right to justice, and right to the principle of equality of human beings. The right to cooperate and not to cooperate is also among the basic human rights in Islam. In this regard, the Qur?an lays down a general principle of paramount importance and universal application. “…Help one another to do what is right and good; do not help one another towards sin and hostility…” (al-Ma?idah, 5:2). This means that it is obligatory upon believers to cooperate with anyone, whether Muslim or non-Muslim, in all his pursuits of good values and works. Similarly, it is obligatory upon believers not to cooperate with anyone, even if he is a Muslim or someone close in terms of considerations of race, country, nationality, language etc., if that person were to promote wickedness and aggression...Read more.
Ramadan – The Month of Kindness
The Prophet (SAW) called the blessed month of Ramadan shahr al-muasat (the month of kindness), which implies being compassionate and kind towards fellow human beings, especially the less fortunate ones. The Qur’an makes it very clear that one cannot attain piety and righteousness without spending from what one loves most. “You will not attain true goodness until you give of what you love. Whatever you give away, Allah knows it” (Aal ‘Imran, 3:92). A truly righteous person (muttaqi) spends out from what Allah (SWT) gave him. “That is the Book, without any doubt. It contains guidance for those who have taqwa: those who have iman in the unseen and establish salah and spend from what We have provided for them” (al-Baqarah, 2:2-3). The relationship between taqwa (God mindfulness) and birr (goodness/righteousness) is further explained in.. Read More...
Ramadan is Rahmah
There are numerous manifestations of Allah’s mercy in the blessed month of Ramadan. It was in Ramadan that the Qur’an was sent down. “The month of Ramadan is the month when the Quran was sent down” (al-Baqarah, 2:185). It was in Ramadan that obligatory fasting was prescribed. “Therefore, whoever of you is present in that month, should fast” (al-Baqarah, 2:185). According to a hadith, when the month of Ramadan comes in, the gates of heaven are opened and the gates of hell are closed and the devils are chained. The spiritual objective of the month of Ramadan is to attain taqwa or God-consciousness. Giving glad tidings about this month, the Prophet (SAW) said that it is the month, whose beginning is mercy, its middle forgiveness, and its end emancipation from the fire of hell. Read More...
Shari’ah – Part 7 (Human Rights and Freedom)
There has been an ongoing discussion in the last few Friday Sermons on the objectives of the shari’ah (maqasid al-shari’ah), which according to most Muslim traditional scholars are five—protection of faith, life, wealth, progeny, and intellect. However, there are other classical and contemporary scholars, who add other objectives to these five well-known standard objectives. What are these additional objectives of the shari’ah? In an attempt to answer this question, today’s sermon will discuss this topic with a focus on human rights and freedom, which also is considered as one of the primary objectives of the shari’ah.
According to Imam al-Ghazali, anything that furthers the five objectives of the shari’ah is maslahah (beneficial) and anything that runs contrary to them is mafsadah (detrimental). For Imam Ibn Taymiyyah, values such as fulfillment of contracts, preservation of ties of kinship, honoring the right of neighbors, and trustworthiness are also among the objectives of the shari’ah. Imam Ibn Ashour includes preservation of family and social order, as well as promotion of the well being and righteousness of the community among.. Read More...
Ramadan – A Historical View
Today’s sermon discusses the concept of fasting (siyam) and its historical background. During the Meccan period of the prophetic era, we observe that instilling of faith (iman) in people’s minds and hearts through Qur’anic revelations took precedence over prescribing rituals of worship (ibadat) to them. That is why we find that even the rulings of the five daily prayers (salah) were prescribed in the tenth year after prophethood. As for fasting, there were no injunctions to observe it up until the believers’ emigration from Mecca to Medina. Although the pagan Quraish of Mecca believed in Allah (SWT), yet this belief was tainted with shades of disbelief (kufr) and polytheism (shirk) as the pure monotheism (tawhid) inherited from their predecessors Ibrahim (AS) and Ismail (AS) had been perverted beyond recognition. Thus it became necessary that... Read More...
Shari’ah – Part 5 (Protection of Wealth)
Protection of wealth (hifz al-Mal) is the fourth objective of Shari’ah. The Islamic concept of wealth (al-Mal), if understood and adhered to ensures the protection of wealth, whether private or public. Unlike the western and capitalistic ideology, which believes that man owns what he possesses, and can do whatever he wants to do with it, Islam teaches that our possessions and resources are only an amanah (trust) whose actual owner is Allah (SWT). “Everything in the heavens and everything in the earth belongs to Allah. All matters return to Allah” (Aal ‘Imran, 3:109). We also have in Surat al-Munafiqun, “The treasures of the heavens and earth belong to Allah…” (63:7). What we earn and apparently own is nothing but a bounty from Allah (SWT). “Believers! When the call to prayer is made on the day of congregation, hurry towards the reminder of God and leave off your trading––that is better for you, if only you knew; then when the prayer has ended, disperse in the land and seek out God’s bounty. Remember God often so that you may prosper” (al-Jumu’ah, 62:9-10). As a matter of fact, everything belongs to God alone, and He will.. Read More...
Shari’ah – Part 4 (Protection of Posterity)
Protection of life, which is the second objective of shari’ah, was the topic of discussion of the last Friday sermon. Human life is sacred. Islam places great emphasis on the sanctity of human life from the womb till the grave, and forbids the taking of life without due process of justice.
Protection of posterity (hifz al-nasl), which is the third objective of shari’ah is the topic of today’s sermon. Posterity, progeny, or lineage refers to all future generations collectively. The terms in Arabic for posterity are al-nasl and al-nasab, derived from the roots na-sa-la and na-sa-ba respectively. While the former means to procreate, the latter means to trace ancestry. In between the two words al-nasl and al-nasab, we find the concept of lineage, which by extension includes all succeeding generations in one’s family.
Islam recognizes the importance of protecting one’s lineage and posterity. The negative growth in population is a sign of destruction of posterity as is evident in some.. Read More...
Shari’ah – Part 6 (Protection of Intellect)
The fifth objective of Shari’ah is the protection of intellect (hifz al-‘aql), the other four being protection of faith, life, wealth, and progeny.
What is ‘aql (intellect)? What is its purpose? Where does it reside in the human body? These are questions that need to be expounded because ‘aql plays an important role in man’s life. It can either benefit or ruin man in both worlds; hence the necessity to preserve and protect it.
Al-‘aql is derived from the root word (ل ق ع), which means to detain, to arrest, to comprehend, and to have intelligence. As a term, it means intellect, discernment, and intelligence. It may be defined or understood as the mind’s ability to apply knowledge to a problem solving situation, or a power of the mind by which one knows or understands. It does not constitute any physical part of our body but is a faculty that enables us to reason, think, plan, and learn. It is al-‘aql that differentiates man from animals and makes him occupy a.. Read More...
Shari’ah – Part 3
This is the third khutbah in a series of khutbas dedicated to discuss shari’ah (Islamic law) and the objectives of shari’ah (maqasid al-shari’ah). Earlier in Part-1, there was a general introduction to shari’ah. In Part-2, there was a discussion on the first objective of shari’ah, which is the protection of faith. This sermon will shed light on the second objective of shari’ah, protection of life.
Shari’ah recognizes the sanctity and sacredness of human life. It is forbidden to kill any person without a just cause. This is clearly ordained by Allah (SWT) when He says, “…and do not take the life which God has forbidden, except in the pursuit of justice…” (al-An’am, 6:151). In Surat al-Isra’, Allah (SWT) says, “Do not take life, which God has made sacred, except with the right to do so. If someone is wrongly killed We have given authority to his next of kin. But he should not be excessive in taking life. He will be helped” (17:33). This means that in demanding a just retribution, one should not.. Read More...
Shari’ah – Part 2
Last Friday’s sermon was an introduction to a series of sermons to be delivered on the subject of Shari’ah. There was a brief discussion on the fundamental sources of Shari’ah and the objectives of Shari’ah (Maqasid al-Shari’ah). There was also a discussion about the misconception that some people have about Shari’ah, which among others is that Muslims want to impose their belief on others; to convert them to Islam; to force women to wear hijab (veil), and to deprive people of their freedoms.
The goal of Shari’ah is to protect the inalienable rights of people regardless of their belief, race, color, and gender. These protected rights, which are broadly five, pertain to people’s faith, life, progeny, property, and intellect. According to Imam al-Shatibi, they constitute the essentials (daruriayt) required for establishment of welfare in this world and the next. While sovereign countries have their own laws to safeguard people’s rights, the guidance under the Islamic Law (Shari’ah) is directly from.. Read More...
Shari’ah – Part 1
Shari’ah has become one of the hottest topics of discussion and debate in the contemporary political discourse, especially in the West. It is often misperceived and misinterpreted as an outdated Islamic Law that is brutal and uncivilized, having no regards to democracy; human rights, women’s freedom etc. As a matter of fact, the very objective of Shari’ah (Maqasid al-Shari’ah) is to protect the inalienable rights of people, such as those pertaining to their faith, life, family, property, and intellect.
Shari’ah has come to occupy a center stage today. Some Christian fundamentalists and right wing politicians among others, with the aid of their propaganda machine (the media) have succeeded in creating a sense of tension, uneasiness, and fear in the hearts and minds of the masses. Allegations are hurled that Muslims want to impose their belief on others; to convert them to Islam; to force women to wear hijab (veil), and to deprive people of their freedoms. Such accusations are not only unfounded, but also.. Read More...
Salvation in Light of Surat al-‘Asr
“(I swear) by the time that man is surely in a state of loss, except for those who believe, do good deeds, support one another with the truth, and support one another with patience and perseverance” (al-‘Asr, 103:1-3).
Surat al-‘Asr, which comprises of only three ayat is one of the shortest surahs in the Qur’an. Although we are familiar with it; we recite it in our prayers; we know it by heart; we teach it to our children, and we even understand its general meaning, yet we may not be fully aware of the depth of meaning that this surah conveys so profoundly in a few simple words. Its significance can be appreciated from the sayings of Imam al-Shafi (d. 820 CE) who said that had there been nothing revealed in the Qur’an except Surat al-‘Asr, it would have been sufficient for the salvation of mankind. That is how profound this surah is. The words of this blessed surah are so simple and straight forward that one need not be a scholar or a linguist to understand them. It is Allah (SWT)’s greatness that He conveys His profound messages with utmost brevity. Read More...
Maintaining the Spirit of Ramadan
Ramadan came to discipline our bodies and lift our souls. It empowered us by providing physical and spiritual strength that helped us to control the appetite of our bodies and overcome the evil of our souls. It saw our mutual values of mercy, compassion, and love being manifested in our conduct. We became more conscious of Allah (SWT), and felt closer the Him. The very objective of fasting during Ramadan is to attain taqwa (God-consciousness) that helps to achieve piety, righteousness, and self-restraint. “O you who believe, fasting is prescribed for you, as it was prescribed for those before you, so that you may be conscious of God” (al-Baqarah, 2:183). By taqwa is meant a consciousness of Allah; a sense of presence of Allah; an awareness that Allah is watching us; a state of mindfulness of Allah that would make one a better individual. Taqwa comes from the Arabic root word waqa, which means to save and protect something from that which could harm it. From the same root, we have wiqayah, which as a shari?ah term means to protect oneself from acts that are sinful by leaving that which is forbidden. “O you who believe, save yourselves and your families from the Fire.” (At-Tahrim, 66:6)...Read more.