Monday, October 6, 2014

Nahar Day-2 in Penang


"Therefore turn in prayer to your Lord and sacrifice (to Him only)."
- Al Kawthar 108:2

I learned two new Arabic words from listening to the Eidul Adha khutbah yesterday - udhiyah and nahar. The khatib gave an excellent speech, moving away from the typical scripted talk. He truly spoke from the heart. He said while we engage in the acts of udhiyah offering sacrifice, we must be careful not to sacrifice ourselves in the wrong way. How? By going back to our old wrong ways.

We should move forward and face towards Allah having performed udhiyah which brings with it plenty of blessings. It is sunnat mua'akkad. Some says it is wajib as a gesture of gratitude for Allah's blessings. May Allah guide us to deeds that are worthy of His mercy. Ameen. Apart from udhiyah activities on the days of Tashrik on 11, 12 and 13 Zulhijjah, Eidul Adha is pretty quiet. Alhamdulillah for more reading time and lovely breakfast in wonderful Penang. 

Reading about Morocco.
Hoping to do Morocco.
Last night, Shaykh al-Ninowy continued speaking on the true meanings of ihram. It's a special program on hajj on Malaysian TV Al-Hijrah. He began by asking, how's your heart with Allah? Have you said salawat to the Prophet today? What is the two pieces of ihram for? According to the shaykh, it's about covering our external and internal sins. The former refers to the sins we commit with our limbs, our eyes, hands, feet etc. The latter refers to the sins we commit with our heart and mind. We need to do tawbah for our heart and mind too. Don't render your heart as a garbage can. There are impurities in our hearts and minds. It's too heavy  a burden to carry. We must go to Allah light and clean. Allah loves those who go to Him with a spiritual heart and body.

Ihram also teaches us about unity, that we are one people, no matter who we are, rich or poor, powerful or powerless. All of us are from Adam and Adam is from clay. Before putting on the ihram, we are to take ghusul (bath) to cleanse ourselves from impurities. We take off our old clothes and put on the ihram. When you do that, imagine taking off your old clothing of old sins and put on the clothes of taqwa, Allah says, the clothing of taqwa is the best clothing there is. 

Then you do the tawaf, then you kiss the Black Stone. Some people have a problem doing that, thinking it's just a stone. But Shaykh al-Ninowy said, you kiss it because of the love you have for the people who had kissed it before you, that is Prophet Muhammad salallah alaihi wasalam, and the sahabah, so that is what unity of love is about. The shaykh then quoted the story of Majnun kissing the walls/ruins where Layla used to live. To Majnun, it's not the love of the bricks that have overtaken his heart, it's the love of those who used to live within those walls. Similarly, in the old days when writing letters were common, we would kiss the letters received from our loved ones and put it near us. It's about the sender, the people whom we love.

Kissing or waving at the Hajar Aswad is as if we make or renew our pledge to Allah. Though the hadith on this is weak, it symbolizes our intention to promise to Allah, it's like saying: I pledge to you O Allah, to love you with all my heart. In conclusion, Shaykh al-Ninowy reminds us to take our heart with us when we go perform hajj.


As in each and every notes posted here, it's a reminder to myself and that I always try my best to share no matter where I go. May Allah grant us the strength to purify ourselves and become a better servant. Ameen.

A small sharing at breakfast in Penang.
See ya soon : )

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