Saturday, April 28, 2012

How do you want to be remembered?


Our days are numbered, certainly. We have seen people who live among us who have gone to the eternal abode. We know not when our time will come. We have remembered those who have gone before us, we remember them in a good way. We want to be remembered in a good way too. 

We too want to be remembered as one who loves and promotes peace. That we ourselves are considered as peaceful people because we truly uphold and practice Islam as our religion InshaAllah. That we have a good character because we have lived to have Prophet Muhammad as our role model for good akhlak. We know not any other leaders other than him and his noble families. May Allah bless them all and keep us with them. Ameen.

We know not any other teachings other than the one the Prophet has taught us about humility, about gratefulness, about patience, about generosity, about good speech, about respect, about loving our brotherhood, oh so many.

And we learned from his blessed descendants about the significance of gathering at majlis 'ilmmajlis zikr, and mawlid. May Allah keep our hearts inclined towards such gatherings and may Allah continue to give us the tawfiq to do so.

We want to be remembered as one who uses the dunya for akhirah, who thinks farther than this temporary physical world. We want to be remembered as those who know and acknowledge the Prophet's family and descendants, those who are guided by the good examples they have set. We are motivated by the characters of the Prophet's companions too. Sayyidina Abu Bakar radhiallahu anhu, to name but one. We want to shed tears of love for the Prophet as he did when he hid with him in the cave. We want to work towards attaining plenty of wealth, not to keep but to give away as he did. He who gave away 200 gold dinars for the purpose of constructing Masjid an-Nabawi. SubhanAllah.

What about us? What have we given to the religion? How do we want to be remembered? How do you want to be remembered?

Sunday, April 22, 2012

"Gather for a good cause." - Habib Hussin Aqeel


Habib Hussin Aqeel was one of several dignified speakers who addressed the audience at the grand Mawlid Ar Rasul event hosted by Yayasan Sofa on 8 April 2012. He spoke on the virtues of gathering for a good cause. 

He said: This majlis verily is connected with 'alamil ulmi, it is a place of an event for the angels too. About fifteen decades ago the Prophet s.a.w had spoken about the benefits of gathering for a good cause. The Prophet said a group of people who convene, who choose to convene at the House of Allah, at a masjid, who gather to make zikr of Allah and salawat will surely reap plenty of rewards. And we learned from the ulama that the best of zikr is to learn about the deen. So what are the benefits that await those who gather for a good cause? Habib Hussin Aqeel said one could hope for four blessings:
  • Allah orders the angels to descend on the place of such a gathering. Allah subhanahu wa ta'ala orders the angels to come down on earth, in Malaysia, at this masjid, ordering them to lower their wings and hover over those who are present. What does it mean to be beneath the wings of the angels? It does not mean that we would become perfect instantaneously. We are weak beings. We do not know what is going to happen thirty minutes from now, let alone five minutes ahead of us, we don't know. We sure hope Allah will grant us something good. But what if He destined a misfortune? We know not! As we are gathered at such a blessed gathering we can hope to take home Allah's bounties, that He would ward off any ill-luck, and that He would protect us.
  • Allah orders the angels to envelop us with a 'bountiful blanket' that our life at work and at home will be so blessed. We shall go home and bring with us this blessing so that our family could also benefit from it. Our family will live more harmoniously than before. Allah's blessings will go to our wife. Our children who might have been disobedient would change for the better by God's will.
  • Allah orders the angels to shower sakinah, a sense of serenity onto the audience of such a gathering. Sakinah is a priceless and precious gift. Not everyone gets to have a tranquil heart and peaceful soul. Only those who love attending majlis zikr could have such a gift. One who has sakinah would act more maturely when handling afflictions.
  • And lastly, our presence at such a gathering will make Allah proud. Allah subhanahu wa ta'ala takes pride in one who gathers to remember Him and He grants pardon to our sins.
May Allah forgive us.
May Allah answer our pleas. 
May Allah heal us.

May I be forgiven for any errors and omissions.
Pic credit: Yayasan Sofa

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Habib Ali Al-Jufri on blessings of Prophet Muhammad

Habib Ali Zain al-Abideen al-Jufri

Alhamdulillah wa shukrulillah, I and thousands of others, surely were grateful for the opportunity to listen to his tausiyah at Masjid Tuanku Mizan Zainal Abidin on 8 April 2012, an event organized by Yayasan Sofa of Malaysia.

Habib Ali Zainal Abideen al-Jufri spoke with much-dignified aura while Habib Ali Zainal Abidin al-Hamid acted as the brilliant interpreter, as always. Below is an extract of his speech:

Praise be to Allah for saving us from darkness and may God blessings be upon the Prophet, his family, and companions. By virtues of the salawat, we pray Allah will grant us great bounties, that He would cleanse our hearts from impurities.

Be cognizant of the unique blessing granted to us, of being ummah of Prophet Muhammad s.a.w. In a hadith, the Prophet said: "I am part of a destiny created for you and you are a part of my destiny." Think about the meaning of his words; make your heart present and feel its meaning that the Prophet s.a.w is a blessing granted to us that he should occupy a lofty place in our hearts. If you ponder over the hadith that Prophet Muhammad was chosen to be our prophet, your heart will feel glad. The Prophet's companions truly understood the hadith and their complete understanding of the prophet's rank were reflected in their characters and actions. They purified their hearts and souls to be receptive to the Prophet's teachings. They understood the secret of his being.

Prophet Ibrahim a.s. once prayed that Allah would send a prophet from among the Arabs and that he would purify their hearts and souls. Tazkiyah (purification) is more crucial compared to knowledge. They understood the principles of knowledge, that the fruit and place of knowledge is the heart. Only then one's knowledge would be of benefit. However, if the heart, as a receptacle for knowledge is rusty, the knowledge acquired by such a heart would be useless. The heart and knowledge are inter-dependent. Generally speaking, knowledge can be mastered by everyone. Anyone, the good and the bad, both believers and disbelievers could acquire knowledge. But the knowledge which resides in a pure heart belongs to the faithful only. The prophet's companions had learned directly from Rasulullah s.a.w such that their hearts were filled with much love for him. They occupy their time with their love for the prophet. Heavenly rewards would be of no meaning if one is not able to see the face of the Prophet. Such intense was the love the companions had for the Prophet. There is a verse in the Qur'an where Allah said those who are obedient towards Allah and His Rasul would be gathered with the righteous, the pious and Prophet Muhammad himself.

Habib Ali al-Jufri asked the audience to consider the meaning of the second part of the aforementioned hadith, that we have been created as a destiny for the Prophet. It is evident that Prophet Muhammad is a great blessing for us. But what about us? Are we a blessing for him? The answer lies within you. Ask yourself, are you, in the morning and in the evening happy or angry? Do you give or do you take it? Do you bring benefits to others? Do you interact with the non-believers in a rightful manner? Do you think you can make the Prophet happy with your actions? How well do you understand the meaning of that hadith? Does your understanding of the hadith make the Prophet pleased with you?

Prophet Muhammad s.a.w once complimented Saidina Jaafar, 'O Jaafar, your appearance, physique, and characters are similar to mine." Habib Ali al-Jufri said, though we may not have a similar physical resemblance to the Prophet, we could still emulate his beautiful characters. Find it in yourself. Are you compassionate in your dealings? Prophet Muhammad brought glad tidings and mercy to the entire universe. He was dedicated in his deeds, he was forgiving. It is indeed a great blessing that we have been created as his ummah. But, do we live up to that hadith, that we are in turn, his good destiny?

Wallahu a'lam.
May I be forgiven for any errors and omissions.

Friday, April 20, 2012

"The earth and the heavens are created for us to know Allah." - Shaykh Abdul Karim Yahya


Alhamdulillah wa shukrulillah, we're indeed grateful to be in his majlis at Masjid Muaz bin Jabal, Malaysia. It was a pleasant surprise indeed. We have been following him virtually for so long and there he was right before our eyes. MashaAllah, he was a picture of plenty of humility. Shaykh Abdul Karim Yahya filled the place of Habib Ali Zaenal Abidin who was accompanying Habib Umar bin Hafiz to Johor.

He was absolutely a person with abundant humility for he said: "It's an honor to be with you, an honor we don't deserve. I am sorry about the absence of Habib Ali. May Allah make us represent them well. It's an honor to visit this region and I say that without exaggeration. We consider you people of South East Asia, we consider you all our role model...I come to learn from the shaykh whom I accompany and from you all."

MashaAllah, that generous remark came from one who was born in California, who embraced Islam in 1989, who had emigrated to Damascus in search of knowledge and afterward moved to Tarem to be a student at the most remarkable traditional Islamic Institution - Darul Mustafa in the southern region of Yemen. How true indeed the saying that water will only accumulate at a low point of the earth. Likewise, knowledge will only accumulate in a humble heart. May Allah make us emulate the degree of humility and adab in speaking. Ameen.

Shaykh Abdul Karim Yahya reminded the audience of the mission for which humanity is placed on this earth, which is to be khilafah (caliphate) of Allah. That the purpose of our creation is to know Allah. Allah puts us on the earth to know Him. He puts the earth, heaven, hell, dunya and akhirah for us to know Allah. Our mission is to establish and represent Allah who we have known and represent those attributes of Allah that we have known and that which the Prophet s.a.w has demonstrated to us. Our mission is to take up vicegerency by developing it in taqwa. Our mission is to declare His Oneness, declare His Messenger and follow the imam of taqwa, none other than the Prophet s.a.w. To develop taqwa is to follow Prophet Muhammad s.a.w. When people leave this way of taqwa they would do the opposite, they are divorced from LailahaillAllah. They are inclined to destroy, they are the materialists who are engaged in destruction. They are cut off from revelation and become misguided like cattle. They compete in their abilities to destroy.

This is the time for the revival of Islamic knowledge. Be a participant in that revival. Let's use our energy to hear the Quran and Prophet Muhammad. Do not compete with the disbelievers. The human being is the most honorable creature and we are created to serve the other creatures. Human being has a soul and capacity to know Allah. It is a nobility, a reason for which we are created. 

Know that there are two types of knowledge. One of which is aimed for worship (amal) and the other one is a fruit of which is amal. Knowledge is the fruit of taqwa and the sign of knowledge is mahabbah. The sign of someone who knows Prophet Muhammad is to love him. The one who knows loves. What is the path of love? There is a verse of Al Imran in the Qur'an that says if you love Allah, follow me, and Allah will love you. If Allah loves you, you know him. 

The way to realize the purpose of our creation is to love and follow the Prophet. The disbelievers might come to the table with their scientific knowledge, we bring to the table, Prophet Muhammad s.a.w.
The above is not a verbatim transcript of his talk. May I be forgiven for any errors and omissions.
Visit Interpreter's Path to watch his video.
Pic credit: and Darul Murtadza

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Habib Umar bin Hafiz at Masjid Al-Falah on 17 April 2012


Alhamdulillah wa shukrulillah, we're indeed grateful to be at Masjid Al-Falah tonight. Although we don't deny being worried upon arrival, seeing the masjid so dark without electricity. The guest of honor Al-Habib Umar bin Hafiz arrived just before Maghrib. It was still dark, hot and stuffy. We all prayed Maghrib and were into the second rakaat when the masjid became bright, Subhanallah! It was a very humbling moment that brought tears to my eyes. That Allah withdraws and gives light whenever He chooses. And surely it signified the blessing that came along with Habib Umar's presence. May Allah preserve him and further elevate his rank.

Habib Umar said, as interpreted by Habib Ali Zainal Abidin Al-Hamid:

Praise be to Allah for granting His blessings to His servants. He who chose those upon whom He shall bestow His bounties, out of so many people. And grant them eternal happiness. And connect them with Prophet Muhammad s.a.w. And make them love him. O Allah, send Your blessings unto Prophet Muhammad and his family who are constantly associating themselves with the Qur'an up until the Day of Resurrection. Also unto his companions who were faithful, who defended the religion. Also unto those who follow in their footsteps.

It is Allah who has gathered us here, the One and only He who makes us convene at this place, a place where the Prophet favors. We are gathered at the House of Allah on this plane in the state of iman towards Allah, His attributes and His exalted Names. In our hearts there is a belief in the religion of the Prophet, verily he is the best of all mankind. We hope to reap the bounties of Allah. We have just prayed in the congregation; we are seated here hoping for His blessings; we mentioned the Name of the God who created us; we made du'a with the hope for His qabul (fulfillment). We make salawat for the best of creations. We visit this place for the sake of Allah. We sit in this majlis while hoping for His mercy. All of these are a blessing from Allah, a great bounty from our exalted Lord. Think about the people out there who are in the state of heedlessness, those who would only glorify Allah for their own nafs, those who busy themselves with dunya while knowing that this dunya is fleeting; those who sit with those who are neglectful and commit transgressions. But you are the best of people on account of the blessings of the best of creations. Praise be to Allah for granting us this blessing.

All of us will someday be gathered before Allah. Neither men nor children will be left out. All male and female; leaders and followers; the poor and the rich, all will be gathered before the Creator for judgment. It will all appear very clear on that day for those who were given reminders yet turned away, those who were disobedient.  All hearts will be in fear at the gathering. We will come to realize that none would be able to help except Allah. It is only He who could be gentle. And none will be happy except those who have had a good relationship with the one who is close to Allah. At that moment none would have hoped to have had a relation with important persons in the world. None would have hoped to have had a relation with businessmen and those who are deemed powerful and influential in this world. All will get frustrated, save those who have had a relationship with Prophet Muhammad s.a.w. the beloved leader.  All will be hoping to have had a relation with him for whatever reason.  This is the reality of Prophet Muhammad as narrated in the Qur’an and the books. It is a day when the oppressors will bite their fingers wishing they have had a connection with him while in dunya.  They will be saying: “I wish I have had no relation with anyone else.” Verily those who distract you from the way of Allah, only wish to mislead you. Your friends with whom you joke and laugh will become your enemy on that day.  Friends will be enemies except those who are God-fearing.  Your friends who have brought you to this majlis will on that day hear glad tidings.

On the day of resurrection, the Prophet will be asked, who are those who have received honor?  “They are those who make zikir, who sit at masjid.” We plead to Him who has gathered us here at this majlis so that He will make us among those who will be given honor. And that He will gather us and resurrect us with those who are given such honor, who shall receive eternal happiness, who will be saved from evil torments. We speak about the truth and reality from the Source who created us, He who loves us and who is more truthful in speech if not Allah? Who guides best other than Prophet Muhammad s.a.w? What will happen to the heedless, people whose intellect is unaware? Protect all that is in your heart from tricks and lies of those who disbelieve.  Do not be deceived by what is on this earth, bounties which are insignificant and fleeting. Think about the hell which Allah has created to distinguish those who are good or evil, between the disbelievers and the faithful. The bounties of this world are not a true source of happiness.  

The disbelievers eat and so do the faithful, but the latter eat with the Name of the Lord, He who makes vegetation spring forth from the earth. The disbelievers eat with lusts, they eat with their own name and their own desires. They do not mention Allah, nor do they praise Him even though their food comes from Him. They use His bounties to transgress Him instead.

The disbelievers drink, so do the faithful. Everything that is on earth is consumed by all, regardless of good or bad. Anywhere and everywhere people board the plane, use the phone and internet. So what’s so special about all that? What is the difference between good and bad? By Allah, everything depends upon good values as taught by the religion. But some people live devoid of faith, virtues and good characters.


Pic credit:
Credit: Hajjah Nisa for sponsoring the expensive cab fare.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

"Conduct mawlid with knowledge and gnosis." - Shaykh Fuad Al-Maliki


Shaykh Muhammad Fuad bin Kamaludin Al-Maliki, the founder of Yayasan Sofa was the instrumental figure behind the Grand Mawlid Ar-Rasul celebration held on 8 April 2012, at Masjid Tuanku Mizan, in Putrajaya, Malaysia. The event marked the launching of Universiti As-Sofa which had taken place the day before. The university is privately funded by the Sofa Foundation and will function on the Sunni teachings of Islam. HRH Tuanku Muhriz Ibni Almarhum Tuanku Munawir, the ruler of Negeri Sembilan has been appointed as the university's Chancellor.

Shaykh Fuad Al-Maliki, 38,  is an Al-Azhar graduate who has studied with many prominent traditional Islamic scholars. One of his most notable murshid (guides) whose family name he carries, was the late scholar of Makkah, Prof. Dr. Sayyid Muhammad ibn 'Alawi al-Maliki.

At the closing of the Grand Mawlid Ar-Rasul event, Shaykh Fuad said: "Praise be to Allah for having chosen us as ummah of Prophet Muhammad s.a.w. We should ponder on the meaning of mahhabah [love] for Allah and His Prophet as an obligation for all. Loving Allah and Rasulullah s.a.w is part of iman. As narrated in Sahih Al-Bukhari, loving the Prophet is a sign of one's faith (iman) towards Allah. But how can we love someone we do not know? Prophet Muhammad was not our grandfather. We do not have nasab (biological link) with him. So how? It is, by way of makrifah and 'ilm (gnosis and knowledge) of the Prophet's reality. My guru Al-Maliki used to say: "The lovers of mawlid, regardless of any mawlid, shall wait for it eagerly, for it could soothe the hearts." However, it is not sufficient that we read mawlid Ad-Daiba'ie, Habashi or Barzanji. If our love for the Prophet is not supported by knowledge and gnosis, we will tend to misunderstand the true reality of Muhammad. It is not just something that we enjoy listening to, but we must endeavor to comprehend the meanings contained in the mawlid books. Love is not merely in the form of voice but in their meanings. I call upon the lovers of mawlid to advance one step ahead by discussing the meanings of mawlid. Do this, so that people will not ridicule us if we conduct mawlid based on knowledge and gnosis. We need to plead to Allah so that He opens our hearts in knowing Rasulullah s.a.w. Many people have been misled by the physical aspect of Rasulullah. Imam As-Sakandari said, "Glory be to Allah Who sealed the secrets of his unique (khususiyah) qualities. He was garbed with human qualities. Allah said to him: "You see them looking at you O Muhammad, their physical eyes are set upon you but their inner eyes do not see you." Basirah (inner eyes) was able to see the lights of Muhammad on the eyebrows of Adam, hence they did not hesitate to prostrate towards Prophet Adam when commanded by Allah. In fact, the lights of Prophet Muhammad is the source of all other lights. None would be able to appreciate the Prophet's light unless he receives aid from Allah. O people, do read the history of Rasulullah, not with your emotions, but with knowledge and makrifah."

Allahu a'lam. May I be forgiven for any errors in summarizing his speech.
For more information on Yayasan Sofa and Universiti As-Sofa, visit:

Monday, April 9, 2012

Habib Umar's visit to Malaysia: 17 - 25 April 2012


Alhamdulillah wa shukrulillah. We are extremely delighted to hear the excellent news. Al-Habib Umar bin Hafiz will be coming to Malaysia from 17 April to 25 April 2012, InshaAllah.

Habib Umar's schedule:
17 April/Tuesday - 6.30 pm - Masjid Al-Falah, Subang Jaya, Selangor
18 April/Wednesday - 6.30 pm - Masjid Al-Azim, Melaka
19 April/Thursday - 6.00 am - Masjid Jamek Bandar Baru Uda, Johor
19 April/Thursday - 5.00 pm - Uni. Tun Hussein Onn, Johor [Haul of Habib Ali bin Jaafar Al-'Idrus]
20 April/Friday - 6.00 am - Masjid Bandar Baru Uda, Johor
20 April/Friday - 12.30 pm - Masjid UTM Skudai, Johor
20 April/Friday - 6.30 pm - Masjid Jawaher Skudai, Johor
21 April/Saturday - 6.30 pm - Masjid Khalid Al-Walid, Mindef, KL
22 April/Sunday - 6.30 pm - Masjid Negeri, N. Sembilan
24 April/Tuesday - 6.30 pm - Dewan Sri Mentalon, Minister's Residence, Kedah
25 April/Wednesday - 6.00 am - Masjid Al-Bukhary, Kedah
25 April/Wednesday - 6.30 pm - Masjid Jamek Al-Ehsan, Kedah

May Allah grant us the tawfiq to attend his majalis and benefit therefrom. May Allah keep the venerable Habib Umar safe and healthy for the sake of the ummah. May his presence bring much light, peace, and success to this beloved country. Ameen.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

"Hope in Allah, always." - Shaykh Prof. Dr. Faruq Hamadah


Shaykh Prof. Dr. Faruq Hamadah, who is Abu Dhabi's Royal Advisor, was one of many honorable guests at the Grand Mawlid ar-Rasul event held at Masjid Tuanku Mizan in Malaysia tonight. He spoke on the importance to pin one's hopes on Allah. 

As translated by Habib Ali Zainal Abidin al-Hamid, and as I have summarized below, the shaykh said:

Praise be to Allah and God's blessings are to Prophet Muhammad s.a.w. As I was sitting and listening to the qasidah [sang by Abu Sya'ar group of Syria], I remembered a sirah of Rasulullah s.a.w. He who taught us to always keep our hopes in Allah, to stand at His door and hope in Allah. Hope is a principle of Muslims. But not of mere hopes. It must be coupled with efforts. Your action will be in the form of righteous deeds for Allah.

The Prophet was subjected to much torture while in Makkah. On one occasion a kaffir Quraysh had cruelly slapped goat's excrement on his head while he was prostrating in prayer. This, Siti Fatimah cleaned while in tears. Siti Fatimah also witnessed the Prophet getting exhausted and in tears on account of the pain inflicted by the Quraysh. But no amount of torment could deter the Prophet's resolve. He said to Fatimah: "I shall spread the teachings of this religion to every corner of the world."

At one point in time, the Prophet was overcome with grief due to the departure of Saydatina Khadijah and Abu Mutalib. So he left for Taif with high hopes. Unfortunately, the outcome was not as positive as he had been expecting. Zaid al-Harithah was in the Prophet's company during the migration. He cried at seeing the bad treatment given to the Prophet. Rasulullah s.a.w comforted him saying: "O Zaid, why are you crying? We are in Allah's care (inayah). Don't be afraid, because Allah is always with us."

Such is a good example from the Prophet on why we must always keep our hopes up high. The afflictions he faced were severe enough to receive the attention of Jibril who offered to destroy Taif. The Prophet said: 'Do not lose hope,' while referring to a verse in the Qur'an where Allah forbids us from feeling despair because hopelessness is a trait of the disbelievers. Instead of wishing evil for the people of Taif, the Prophet prayed so that the unborn children of Taif would someday become his followers.

When the Prophet was ousted in the company of Saidina Abu Bakar, he said to the latter, "O Abu Bakar, know that while there are the two of us together, the third among us is Allah. Do not feel hopeless. Keep hoping that Allah will open the door of His mercy."

The sahabah had risked their lives for the sake of upholding Islam. Istislam means surrendering to Allah. And when one is faced with hardships, the door of ease shall fling open.

Prophet Muhammad was once ready in his ihram on the way to perform umrah but the enemies stopped him. When he chose to enter into a peace treaty and forego the umrah plans, Saidina Umar remarked: "O Rasulullah, did you not promise to take us for umrah?" He answered as a matter of fact, "I did, but I did not promise to do it this year." Prophet Muhammad, after having gone through many ordeals, eventually succeeded in entering Makkah, as narrated in the Quran: Inna fatahna laka fathan mubeena. "Verily We have granted Thee a manifest Victory!"
Allahu a'alam. May I be forgiven for any errors and omissions. Special credit goes to Sister Mastura for giving this car-less blogger a lift to the masjidThe event was hosted by Yayasan Sofa in conjunction with the establishment of Universiti As-Sofa on 7th April 2012. I shall continue posting notes from other speakers later, InshaAllah.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Mawlid al-Rasul at Masjid Tuanku Mizan, Putrajaya, Malaysia - 8 April 2012


May Allah grant us the tawfiq to be present at this grand majlis, InshaAllah.

We are delighted to also mention the presence of the honorable 
Al Habib Ali Zain al-'Abideen al-Jufri 
in Malaysia from April 6 - 10, 2012

for his schedule.

With this insignificant deed we do, we humbly and earnestly pray that Allah will bring us to his majlis at least once.

We would also like to express our regrets that we had missed the annual grand
Haul of Shaykh Abdul Qadir al-Jailani
organized by the Al-Wariseen Trust on 31st March 2012.

By Allah, if we were present, we would have related at least one lesson from the majlis
May Allah erase all black dots in our heart which might have caused our absence at Majlis Rasululah s.a.w. We are indeed an erring servant of His.