Thursday, February 27, 2020

Habib Umar bin Hafiz's recommended practice for the month of Rejab 1441 Hijri [Year 2020]


Alhamdulillah wa shukrulillah, we have reached the beginning of the three best months - Rejab. May Allah let us live to see Shaaban and Ramadhan. Aamiin.

Below is Habib Umar's recommended practice for Rejab.
We are encouraged to recite it 3000x or more.

أَسْتَغْفِرُ اللهَ لِما يَعْلَمُهُ الله
 أَسْتَغْفِرُ اللهَ كَما يُحِبُّهُ الله
Astaghfirullah lima ya’lamuhullah
Astaghfirullah kama yuhibbuhullah

I seek the forgiveness of Allah for everything that He knows;
I seek Allah's forgiveness in the way that He loves.

May Allah capacitate our limbs to keep busy in the ways that are pleasing to Him.

May Allah make it light for our tongues and hearts to make plenty of istighfar every single day of Rejab.

May Allah forgive you and me for everything that He knows about us. May Allah forgive you and me in the way that He loves.

Aamin Ya Rabbal 'alamin.


Sunday, February 9, 2020

Qul Ya Azim & Ya Hannan Ya Mannan - Qasidah rendition by Superdervish | Lyrics for Qul Ya Azim & Ya Hannan Ya Mannan


The rhythm and moments I've missed. And keep longing ever since the passing of Almarhum Dato' Seri Shaykh Raja Ashman ibni Almarhum Sultan Azlan Shah (1958-2012), the former Naqshbandi-Haqqani Tariqa leader for Malaysia.

The below videos were recorded ten years ago at Almarhum's residence.

The qasidah band, comprised of talented boys from Kedah and Sarawak, led by Brother Amirul was just awesome. Videos of their performance are borrowed from the Superdervish YouTube channel. May Allah bless them with more significant success in dunya wal akhirah.

It was a privilege to be present at several of the majlis that Almarhum Shaykh Raja Ashman hosted. May Allah bless his soul and place him with the muqarabin. Aamin. Al Fatihah.

Let's have a look at the lyrics for Qul Ya Azim, taken initially from It was first shared on this blog on 7th April 2011, a posting that garnered 10,000+ views. MashaAllah. The pull of  The Magnificent Al-Azeem.

May Allah pull us to Him and His Beloved Rasul [salallah alaihi wasalam].

Qul ya 'Azeem antal 'Azeem
qad hammanaa hammun 'Azeem
wa kullu hammin hammana
ya huunu bismika ya Azeem
Say O tremendous! You are the Tremendous One
We have been afflicted with a grave concern
And every concern we are worried about
becomes easy with the mention of Your Name, O Great One

Antal qadeem qadeemun fil azal
antal lateef lateefun lam tazal
'Anna azil maa qad nazaal
min faadhil khatbis-shadeed
You are the ancient one, ancient one
You are the subtle with subtleness everlasting
Remove from us what has befallen us
of grave and difficult afflictions

Qul ya 'Azeem antal 'Azeem
qad hammanaa hammun 'Azeem
wa kullu hammin hammana
ya huunu bismika ya Azeem 

Hayyun qadeem qadeemun waajidu
baaqi ghanee ghaniyyun maajidu
'Adlun ilaahi ilahun waahidu
barrun ra'uf ra'ufun bil 'abid
Living Ancient, Ancient and Generous
Immortal Rich, Rich, and Glorious
Just God, one God
God is Tender, tender with the servant


Wa lin nabiyyi salli ya salaam
minna salaatun maa salaam
yawmal jazaa nahnaa salaam
mimmaa nakhaa fu ya majeed
And upon the Prophet of Peace
From us send greetings and blessings
Grant us safety on Judgment Day
From all things which we fear, O Glorious One


Wal 'aali was sahbil usood
saadu bihi beedan wa sood
laa siyyamaa maahil hasood
sayfu' ilaah ibnul waleed
And the lions from the Family and Companions
Became masters through him, regardless of being white or black
Especially the one who wipes out great armies
the Sword of Allah (Khalid) son of al-Waleed

Allahumma salli wa sallim wa baarik 'alayhi wa 'alaa alaih

Both videos are from Superdervish channel:

Last but not least, I am pleased to offer the transliteration and translation for Ya Hannan Ya Mannan for the first time here. It was done based on the Arabic script and Indonesian translation, made available on 'Lirik Sholawat' Facebook dated 1st March 2019. 

Kindly highlight any mistakes and forgive me for it. 
Allahu a'lam.


Ya Hannan Ya Mannan Ya Khadimal ehsan
O Most Loving, Most Beneficent Lord whose compassion is without beginning

Bahrujuudik malyan judlana bil ghufron
The ocean of Your generosity is abundant, so forgive us

Jud lihazal insan 'abda suu in khozyan 
Be generous toward me, one ugly despicable servant

Min zunu bih wahlan kho-if innak khodban
One who is full of sins, fearful of Your wrath

Robbana nastagh fik robbana nastar dhik
O Lord, we ask for Your forgiveness and mercy

Walana zonnu fik ya roja ahlal iman
We think well of you O Lord, unto You the believers pin their hopes

Ya Hannan Ya Mannan Ya Khadimal ehsan
O Most Loving, Most Beneficent Lord whose compassion is without beginning

Bahrujuudik malyan judlana bil ghufron
The ocean of Your generosity is abundant, so forgive us

La tughaiyib ro ji tahta baabik laa jii
Do not forsake Your servant who begs at Your door

Lam yazal fidda jii kho ilan Ya Hannan
The darkness persists in pleading O Most Beneficent

Nin nabiyyil 'ummi wa Khadijah ummi
By the name of the unlettered Prophet and Khadijah the mother

Wal batuulil khotmi sayyida tin niswan
And Fatimah the devout worshipper, the female leader of Heaven


Lirik Sholawat Facebook

Monday, February 3, 2020

Habib Muhammad bin Alwi Al-Haddad on the Leadership of Prophet Muhammad (salallah alaihi wasalam)


Alhamdulillah wa shukrulillah.

I watched the recording of Habib Muhammad's post-Subuh lecture at Masjid Namira, South Jakarta the other day. I've revisited it today and translated it cos it's absolutely worthy of sharing. It is not fully verbatim, but almost.

The recording was published on Nabawi TV Facebook on 1st Feb 2020.

Habib Muhammad bin Alwi Al-Haddad began by praising Allah and making salutations to the Prophet salallah alaihi wasalam; and he recited this du'a among others:

Alhamdulillahil lazi hada na li haza
wama kunna linah tadiya lau laaa an hada nallah.
[Praise be to Allah for guiding us,
had He not guided us, we will never be guided.]


Dear all,

We gather here this morning to reminisce, to remember, to discuss the one and only leader; Allah has not created a leader greater than him; a leader of zahir and batin, not just a leader in dunya but also a leader in akhirah, a leader who is not only concerned about his family and cronies but a leader for the entire humanity who will eventually witness his leadership on the Day of Qiyamah. Such a great position he holds, our honorable Rasulullah salallah alaihi wasalam. His position is extremely lofty that it is difficult for us to deliberate. It is a complex subject. 

There is a line from Qasidah Burdah by Imam Busiri:
'Verily, the eminence and holiness of  Prophet Muhammad's rank is unbounded.'

If it was bounded, anyone would be able to articulate it. His position is amazingly eminent that it is hard for us to discuss the Prophet's position comprehensively.

Habib Ali Al-Habsyi in his narration in Simtud Duror says: "Our tongues cannot explain, except for a tiny speck of the Prophet's characteristics." Nevertheless, let us try to look into his leadership qualities based on what we have read from historical records as related by the sahabah.

A leader is expected to possess several criteria. A leader must be one who is bighearted. Do you not think the Prophet is one who is beneficent?

Prophet Musa made a request to Allah, as in the oft-quoted du'a: Rabbish rahli sadri... (O my Lord, expand my heart.). Prophet Musa pleaded to Allah, whereas Prophet Muhammad did not ask for it, yet he was given: Alam nashroh laka sadrak... "Did We not expand for you [O Muhammad] your heart...?"

Imagine the vastness of the Prophet's heart. He is a leader of dunya and akhirah. How expansive is his heart?! I cannot fathom discussing the expansiveness of the Prophet's heart.

There is a story about one student who approached his guru. The student was confused and complaining to his guru about his problems, this and that. 'Come let's do this', said the guru. 'Take a handful of salt. Use your hand. Put it in a glass of water.' The student did as told. 'What do you think of the water now?' asked the guru. 'It must be very salty' the student replied. 'Now take a handful of salt and follow me'. The guru then took the student to a lake and made him throw the salt into the lake. 'Now taste the water, let's see if it has become salty.' The salinity of the water at the lake did not change obviously. 'Do you understand me now?' asked the guru.

If you were glass and you have a handful of problems, you'd feel it. But if you were a lake and you had to face the same amount of problems, you wouldn't be affected at all. Therefore, have a big heart. Your heart should be upgraded. Upgrade your heart as requested by Prophet Musa: Rabbish rahli sadri.
A leader is surely confronted with all kinds of problems and complaints channeled to him. If his heart is small, he would surely find it difficult, he would feel chaotic. But if his heart was as large as a lake, he would not be disturbed. The challenges are the same, but he won't feel it.

Now imagine the Prophet's heart?

We are a normal human being with common physical attributes. The tallest among us is maybe 2-meter in height. How much does our body weigh? Our physique is limited. But our batin is capable of an upgrade just like the Prophet salallah alaihi wasalam.

We are all leaders. Kullukum ra'in. You may be a leader for your family, you may be a leader for yourself, a business, or a community. Therefore we should be asking from Allah as did Prophet Musa, and as granted by Allah to Prophet Muhammad salallah alaihi wasalam so that He expands our hearts.

In a hadith qudsi, Allah describes the earth and the heavens as being relatively small by His measure. The earth by our measure is indeed huge. How many hectares do you reckon? The skies are even bigger if we were to measure. It is extremely vast, but to Allah, it is not. So 'What is big then to You O Allah?'  'The heart of my servant, the heart of a Mukmin is huge. I can pour anything I wish onto the heart of my servant that even the earth and the heavens cannot contain.'

So, we can only marvel at the capacity of the Prophet's heart.

There is a verse in the Quran where Allah says: Lau anzalna hazal Quran... 'Had We sent down this Quran upon a mountain, you would have seen it breaking asunder...' The mountains will be crushed. Yet Allah revealed the Quran to the Prophet's heart.

As a leader, no matter how small our circle of influence, we need to have what the Prophet salallah alaihi wasalam has -- a heart that is wide and far-reaching. May Allah expand our hearts InshaAllah. Aamiin.

A leader is usually judged by the service or facilities that he could offer. But the Prophet did not have much to offer in this aspect. There was a time when he had to pawn his armored-shirt to buy some food for his family. Why did the Prophet do that? Why didn't the Prophet ask for a loan from the sahabah? Imagine if he were to do that? The sahabah would have gladly given the Prophet what he needed for free. They would have competed to do the Prophet a favor. But Rasulullah salallah alaihi wasalam did not wish to take advantage of his followers. Imagine how much the Prophet was revered and loved by the sahabah who were ever willing to give up their wealth, even their lives for the sake of Prophet Muhammad salallah alaihi wasalam. Yet Rasulullah chose to transact with his Jew neighbor instead. Surely the armored shirt was highly valuable and could fetch a big sum of money, so much more than the value that he had pawned. He did not seek the money to renovate his home or buy a car. It was for his family's provision. It was clear that the Prophet was not willing to take advantage of his position.

Prophet Muhammad salallah alaihi wasalam was a tawadhu' (humble) leader. He was very humble that he would carry his own stuff. Imagine if we were to see our guru carrying his groceries. We would quickly walk up to him to offer a hand. Prophet insisted on carrying his own bags. He refused help, saying: La. Sohibu syai ahakubi syai ihi. Sohibu syai ahakubi hamlih. One should carry one's own things.

Prophet Muhammad salallah alaihi wasalam was a leader who was very appreciative of his followers. Robi'ah bin Kaab was one of 60 ashabul suffah at Masjid Nabawi. The ashabul suffah did not have a home so they lived at the compound of Masjid Nabawi and would only eat if there was any food available at the mosque, otherwise, they would just fast. They were fuqara who lived a meager life. Saidina Abu Hurairah was their leader.

Robi'ah bin Kaab of Bani Aslam was among them. Robi'ah was one who often voluntarily prepared ablution water for the Prophet, for his night prayers, for anything at all, he was quick to volunteer. So one day, Rasulullah asked him, 'Tell me, what is it that you wish for, O Robi'ah?'

Imagine the Prophet making such an offer. Rasulullah salallah alaihi wasalam was one who never said no to people. He never said 'La' [No], for any requests made to him. Even his great-grandson Saidina Ali Zainal Abidin ibni Hussain would not say no to anyone. A poet by the name of Farazdah said: Imam Ali never said la except during tashyahud - Ash haduan la ilaha illallah....If not for tasyahud, all he would say is na'am [yes].  

So when the Prophet asked Robi'ah if he had any request; according to some riwayat, he responded immediately, and some said, he asked for a few days to think about it. The offer from Prophet Muhammad was certainly a golden opportunity, it would not come again. So he said he would come back after three days. 

When he met the Prophet after three days, Robi'ah mentioned his one and only request: As aluka mura faqotaka fil jannah. 'I want to be with you in Heaven.' 

Now, what about us? Imagine if we were to meet Prophet Khidir, let alone Prophet Muhammad. Imagine Khidir saying: 'Tell me what you want?' We would surely ask for worldly matters. Oh Khidir, I want to go to Hajj. I want to be this...I want that. But Robi'ah asked for something so great. He did not only want to go to Heaven, but he also wanted to be with the Prophet in Heaven! 

What about us? What chances do you think you have about going to Heaven? Some might say, yes it's easy, some would say no, it's not easy. Robi'ah did not hesitate to ask for such a big favor.

Well, we too ask for a big favor during mawlid. We say Rabbi balighna bijahi fi jiwari khayra maq'ad. We ask for the best Heaven, close to the Prophet. Did you realize what you were asking for? That's a big request. But that's all right because the Prophet told us to never ask for small things and to ask for Syurga Firdaus [the Highest Heaven]. If we were to rely on our ibadah to get to Heaven, we would surely fail because of the poor quality of our worship. 

Imagine how a dashboard product can get rejected due to a small defect. That's a Japanese standard. What about the quality of our solat? Imagine the difference between Japanese standards and Allah's standards? Of course, the latter is far greater.

Habib Abdullah bin Hussain bin Tohir, a grand wali said; "O Lord, we have not much amal. Our amal is so flawed." Indeed our solat is full of flaws. At times, in our Zohor prayers, we lose count on the number of rakaat. Our ibadah is far from perfect.

The Prophet salallah alaihi wasalam did not say no to Robi'ah. He said: 'Your request is a big one. Help me help you. Make plenty of sujud.' So make plenty of sujud.      

I wish to conclude my talk with a hadith. If we were to practice as told, we would surely be safe in Qiyamah. The Prophet's leadership would be clear for all to see during Qiyamah. As a leader, he would be ready to help us. When our deeds get measured on the mizan, that is where we will need shafaat from the Prophet. At that point, if you could see the Prophet there, you know you'll do fine.

There is a hadith, I have just read from a kitab by Abuya Sayyid Muhammad Al-Maliki. Rasulullah salallah alaihi wasalam said: 'Whoever helps fulfill the wishes of his family or neighbors...' For example, your neighbor needs to go to the hospital but he does not have transport. So you offer your car. Or whatever else that people might wish for, you fulfill.

If you do this, the Prophet said: I would intercede and help you at the mizan. If you have a lot of good deeds, then good for you. Should you lack good deeds and you have a lot of sins, that's where I will help you. I will grant shafaah. That is if you are one who is quick to help others.

Let us practice what we have learned from this hadith. May we get to gather with Prophet Muhammad salallah alaihi wasalam in akhirah. 

Forgive me for any mistakes in my speech, as it is entirely my fault. 
Wasalamualaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh.


Allahu a'lam. May I be forgiven for any omissions and errors in the translation. If you can understand the Indonesian language, I encourage you to check out the recording at:

Do highlight to me should you find any mistakes. Jazakumullahu khairan kasira for your moral support towards this blog, wal afuw minkum.


Sunday, February 2, 2020

The value of 'La ilaha illallah' - Habib Alwy bin Abdrurrahman Al-Habsyi


Hi Guys,

It's strange but suddenly I've become a little more attached to this blog, again. Well...that's because I've been checking old entries to tidy them up, as in making necessary corrections and relabelling them. Occasionally, I'd also check what people read in real-time and what they've been reading in the past 24 hours. It's kinda fun as I too would read what people have just read and I found some old 'Personal Ramblings' of mine quite entertaining LOL. Oh yeah, we have a proverb in Malay to describe such self-praise, we say 'masuk bakul angkat sendiri'. LOL.

But you know we have to be our own number one supporter, our own number one fan, cos hey, we have got only one life to live and 'no one can do you better than you'. Right?

Anyway, on a serious note, I've been watching on a daily basis, sometimes twice a day, the live streamings on Nabawi TV YouTube channel. I wish I could make a proper entry about the lessons I learned in each of the majlis taalim or majlis mawlid that I watched. But I can't. Already, I have slacked a bit on my MBA research work. Haih!

So just quickly, one takeaway from the majlis taalim I watched on Nabawi TV this beautiful Sunday morning. A Sunday with a unique date: 2.2.2020. I am not sure I'll live long enough until 2.3.2030 but one thing for sure, I understand a bit better the value of La ilaha illallah and hope to fill whatever remaining years of my life, living it. Let's.

  • We all know that we should quickly follow our bad deeds with good deeds (hasanat). Habib Alwy bin Abdurrahman Al-Habsyi [pic] said the easiest and the most weighty of good deeds to follow a transgression is by reciting La ilaha illallah. This was taught by Prophet Muhammad salallah alaihi wasalam to Imam Abu Dharr Al-Ghifari, a sahabi who was famous among the angels because of the amount of La ilaha illallah he recited all his life. Imam Abu Dharr asked for a wasiat from the Prophet salallah alaihi wasalam. The Prophet told him to always have taqwa. 'What else O Rasulullah,' he asked. "Recite as much as you can La ilaha illallah." So he did as told and became well-known among the angels for that. That even Jibril sent his salam to Abu Dharr. 
  • Imam Abu Dharr was also advised by the Prophet to cover up a bad deed with a good deed (hasanat) should he slip and make a mistake. Imam Abu Dharr asked the Prophet salallah alaihi wasalam for reassurance if La ilaha illallah is considered a hasanat that could replace one's wrongdoings. The Prophet replied: "It is afdhalul hasanat to wipe off one's sin". It is! It is the most afdhal. The most effective sins-eraser if you will.  
  • I realized now, it is a gamechanger. Because all this while whenever I fall into error, I thought OK let's plan aside a time, say tonight, pray extra and make extra istighfar. So there is a delay of perhaps 8 hours and my idea of a good deed that could replace my bad deed, was quite a task. Today I know, it's not as effective as reciting La ilaha illallah repeatedly and wholeheartedly. Simple. Easy!
  • Habib Alwy also said, as recommended by one wali qutub Al-Imam Habib Abdullah bin Abu Bakar Al-Aydrus, we should close our eyes when reciting La ilaha illallah as it would penetrate our cells right to the core of our hearts and souls. 
  • We should also lengthen the recitation as in Laaaaaa ilaaaaa haaaaa illaaaaalllllaaaaaaah because as said Habib Alwy, there is a hadith that says when a person does this, the Arash will shake and thereby Allah would grant pardon to the person until he/she completes the phrase. So the Prophet and sahabah would lengthen their recitals to prolong the state of afuw (forgiveness) from the Lord. 
  • There is also a hadith about the Prophet salallah alaihi wasalam pointing his index finger (forefinger) upwards signifying tawhid whenever he says La ilaha illallah. This was to emphasize the fact that there is no one on earth that is worthy to be worshipped except Allah. Ma min ilaahin fil wujudi bil haqqi illallah!
I hope I heard him right, that Arabic phrase. We all love learning new Arabic words, don't we? So, don't forget afdhalul hasanat = La ilaha illallah. 

Wish you all a productive week ahead.  

As ever,
E. Ismail

Contents are in the Indonesian language though.