4 July 2013 Fenton Zawiya, Michigan
Allahumma salli `alaa Sayyidina Muhammadin wa `ala aali Sayyidina Muhammad.
A`oodhu billahi min ash-Shaytaani 'r-rajeem. Bismillahi 'r-Rahmaani 'r-Raheem. Kalimataan khafeefataan `ala’l-lisaan thaqeelataan fi’l-meezan habeebataan li’r-rahmaan: SubhaanAllah wa bihamdihi subhaanAllahi ’l-`Azheem.
Nawaytu 'l-arba`een, nawaytu 'l-`itikaaf, nawaytu 'l-khalwah, nawaytu 'l-`uzlah,
nawaytu 'r-riyaadah, nawaytu 's-sulook, lillahi ta`alaa fee haadha 'l-masjid.
O believers around the world, may Allah bless you! The first of Ramadan for the year 1434 is coming soon. Inshaa-Allah in a few more days we will be welcoming the month of Ramadan, the month of fasting. We must prepare ourselves in order to be in ridaaullah, the happiness of Allah from us. To make Allah (swt) happy is to obey Him in everything that He asked us. Obedience must have in it a secret that makes us to always be remembering Allah (swt).
Ramadan is the month of fasting, where Allah (swt) said and as Prophet (s) said:
الصوم لي وانا اُجزي به
As-sawmu lee wa anaa ajzee beeh.
Fasting is for Me and I will reward it. (Hadith Qudsi)
So no one can reward us except Allah (swt). To be near each other, Allah (swt) said:
يد الله مع الجماعة
Yadul-Llahi m`a al-jama`at.
Allah's Hand is with the group. (Kanz al-`Ummaal)
Allah’s Hand is with the group of people, so we don’t want to be scattered. Although we might be the same in number, if we are near then more reflection of different energy will be reflected on each other. In this month inshaa-Allah we will be preparing to speak about different Islamic principles and subjects in order that we will learn our religion as much as we can; especially about dhikrullah, Tawheed and many other issues that come in front of us.
Allah said on the tongue of the Prophet (s), “Fasting is for Me and I will reward for it.” Then if you are going to meet someone important, you are going to give them a nice gift. If you are going to meet a leader, your gift is going to be different, it will be nicer. If you are going to meet a king, whatever you give him as a gift he has a better one, as he has everything. But giving a gift is showing your love and respect and he will be happy with you when he sees you are trying your best. That is between servant to servant, from `abd to `abd, so what then do you think from servant to Allah (swt)? He says, “Fasting is for Me and I will reward for it.” When we fast, our fasting must be nice and clean as the Prophet (s) said, “Jinn and shayaateen will be chained not to run after fasting people.” That means he is giving us a hint that if you behave well, Shaytan will be hooked and Allah will put that chain on him by ordering his angels to put a chain around these shayateen in order not to run after Ummat an-Nabi (s).
What is the first important principle in Islam? [Shahadah.] You? [Laa ilaaha illa-Llah.] You? [Tawheed.] Good answer, first is Tawheed. The first principle that Allah sent the message of Islam with Sayyidina Muhammad (s) is to teach us Tawheed. That means Allah does not like shirk. Tawheed means to make sure that your self, your nafs and your soul is understanding that there is no creator except Allah (swt), by saying “Laa ilaaha illa-Llah” and “Ash-hadu an laa ilaaha illa-Llah wa ash-hadu anna Muhammadu ‘r-Rasoolullah.” So it is important to stress on Kalimat at-Tawheed because Allah (swt) said, `Azham adh-dhunoob ash-shirk, “The greatest of sins is shirk.” Shirk is impurity. If you are not pure, you are not giving Allah’s rights to Him; therefore, Allah will yuharrim `alayhim al-jinaan, prohibit those who do shirk to enter Paradise. This is very important, so take notes and learn and I will test you later.
So what prevents people from entering Paradise? Ash-shirk billah, to deny the Oneness of Allah (swt). You need to step on your shirk, meaning to step on everything that yansub ilaa nafsihi, you attribute to yourself; whereas everything good has to be attributed to Allah because He gave it to you. What allows us to enter Paradise? Tawheed. Shirk prevents you from entering Paradise. So what is the key to Paradise? “Laa ilaaha illa-Llah” and “Muhammadun Rasoolullah.”
Prophet (s) said:
من قال لا اله الا الله دخل الجنة
Man qaala laa ilaaha illa-Llah dakhal al-Jannah.
Whoever says ‘Laa ilaaha illa-Llah’ enters Paradise.
Allah loves that. Yes, you will commit sins, but first you have to establish within yourself the words ‘Laa ilaaha illa-Llah.’ If you are saying “Laa ilaaha illa-Llah” but not acting on it, it will still save you from Hellfire, but you will not be recognized in Paradise as someone who is highly respected. So the key of Paradise is Laa ilaaha illa-Llah and do you have a key? The key if you look at it, it is straight and you cannot have a crooked key as it will not open. So it has to be straight, which means you are on Siraat al-Mustaqeem, the Straight Path. If it is straight, also it might not open because it needs these teeth, if it doesn't have teeth it doesn't open. So as much as you have teeth and you are slowly moving on Siraat al-Mustaqeem and entering your key inside the Heavenly Doors, it makes teeth. So without teeth you cannot enter Paradise; the key will go inside the ignition, but not ignite the car, so if we don’t have teeth in the key of Paradise the door will not open.
What are the teeth of the key of Paradise? The key of Siraat al-Mustaqeem is ‘Laa ilaaha illa-Llah Muhammadun Rasoolullah,’ but it has teeth and you have to make sure they are perfect. That is where fiqh comes. The Fiqh ash-Shari`ah of Islam is what you have to have in your key in order to open the door of Paradise. The first of the teeth of keys of Paradise is as-salaat, and what is the second? Zakaat. And the third is siyaam and fourth is Hajj, and the fifth one is jihad and sixth is amr bi ’l-ma`roof wan-nahiyy `ani ‘l-munkar, and there are many. So each tooth represents one principle of Islam and the first after Tawheed is:
ما بين الكفر والايمان ترك الصلاة
Maa bayn al-kufr wa 'l-imaan tarku ’s-salaat.
What is between disbelief and belief is the leaving of prayers. (Tirmidhi)
What is between unbelief, which prevents you to enter Paradise, and faith is to leave prayers. If you leave your prayers you are prohibited to enter Paradise. So maa bayn al-kufr wa 'l-imaan tarku ’s- salaat, between kufr and imaan is someone who does not pray. The difference between belief and disbelief is to leave the prayer. If you do the prayer you have imaan, but if you leave prayer you have kufr although you recite “Laa ilaaha illa-Llah,” but you left out one major tooth on the key. So it might be one major tooth to the lock, so you are not praying and the key does not open the lock. Sometimes you say, “I am praying,” but not all the prayers, so that is a partial tooth and the door will still not open.
How many of us are praying and not praying, and what kind of prayers are accepted and what kind of prayers are not accepted? You might pray and it is not accepted and you might pray and it is accepted because there are differences. And also most important is what the Prophet (s) mentioned in many ahadeeth is silat ar-rahim wa birr al-walidayn, the relationships, blood relationship and spiritual relationship. You must connect to your family. Don't say, “I don’t talk to that one as he abused me.”
وأوصى النبي صلى اللّه عليه وسلم أبا هريرة بوصية عظيمة فقال: يا أبا هريرة! عليك بحسن الخلق. قال أبو هريرة رضي اللّه عنه: وما حسن الخلق يا رسول اللّه؟ قال: تصل مَنْ قطعك، وتعفو عمن ظلمك، وتُعطي من حرمك
Awsaa ‘n-nabiyyu sall-Allahu `alayhi wa sallim Aba Hurayrah bi-waseeyyati `azheematin fa-qaala: yaa Aba Hurayrah radiAllahu `anhu, `alayka bi-husnu ‘l-khuluq. Qaala Abu Hurayrah: wa maa hasana ‘l-khulqi yaa Rasoolullah. Qaala: tasila man qata`k, wa ta`foo `amman zhalamak, wa tu`tee man haramak.
As the Prophet (s) said to Sayyidina Abu Hurayrah (r): “You must keep good character,” and he asked, “What is the good character?” And the Prophet (s) said:
1. “to connect with the one who disconnected with you.”
2. “To forgive the one who oppressed you,”
3. “to give to the one who blocked you from getting what you like.” (Bayhaqi)
You have to connect to your relatives. (Speaking to a mureed.) You have to connect to your mother, she is asking about you and she is missing you. So you have to connect to each other in spiritual relations, like Muslims. If a group of people speak bad about you, never mind, step on your ego and be better than them. Prophet (s) said that is from the best character, birr al-walidayn. Like today, many people think their parents are old-fashioned and “Why do I have to listen to them?” So birr al-walidayn is to be good to your parents, to do something they like to be happy with you, and to remember how much they were trying day and night to raise you up and you are going to be responsible if you raise them doing sins and running in the streets. You cannot bring children and say, “I don’t care for them, they are doing drugs and drinking salt! I am not interested.” No, you are responsible for them! You have to take care of them and look after them or else you will be asked by Allah (swt). Anyone who makes salaat, sawm, zakat, Hajj, jihad, amr bi ’l-ma`roof wan-nahiyy `ani ‘l-munkar and birr al-walidayn, Allah will give him a key to open any level of Paradise.
إنما الأعمال بالنيات
Innama ‘l-`amaalu bi ’n-niyyaat.
Every action is according to (its) intention. (Bukhari)
So let us make intention, “Yaa Allah! We are trying our best with Your support, with support of the Prophet (s), support of awliyaullah, support of scholars and each other, as we are weak servants, in order that we fulfill the obligations You have ordered us to do, we say:
أَطِيعُواْ اللّهَ وَأَطِيعُواْ الرَّسُولَ وَأُوْلِي الأَمْرِ مِنكُمْ
Atee`oollaha wa atee`oo 'r-Rasoola wa ooli 'l-amri minkum.
Obey Allah, obey the Prophet, and obey those in authority among you. (Surat an-Nisa, 4:59)
Wa min Allahi 't-tawfeeq, bi hurmati 'l-Fatihah.
And Allah said:
إِنَّ اللّهَ لاَ يَغْفِرُ أَن يُشْرَكَ بِهِ وَيَغْفِرُ مَا دُونَ ذَلِكَ لِمَن يَشَاء
Inna‘Llaaha laa yaghfiru an yushraka bihi wa yaghfiru maa doona dhaalika liman yashaa’u.
Indeed, Allah does not forgive association with Him, but He forgives what is less than that for whom He wills. (Surat an-Nisa, 4:48)
Allah does not like anyone to make shirk with Him. Anything else He will forgive, if He likes and He likes us to be Muslim, so don't let the words, “I am not Muslim” to pass your tongue as you don't know what will happen!
So that key will open only for you if you have sins and khatayaa and ma`asiyy, it still has its residue on the key or if the key has been corrupted, even though you might think they are small sins, the key doesn't open the lock because it is corroded. You have the key, you have the teeth on it, but it is corroded with small sins that are still left there. So be sure to make istighfaar every day 100 times so that Allah will forgive you from your sins, because it needs repentance and istighfaar!
Allah will not let anyone enter Paradise until he is pure from all these small sins and the key is polished, so He will put us in punishment to purify us. So we cannot go into punishment, yaa Rabbee, as we cannot take it, so forgive us! And He said those who die, the angels take their souls and they are tayyibeen, good people and pure people. Allah will send them to Paradise:
وسيق الذين اتقوا ربهم إلى الجنة زمرا حتى إذا جاءوها وفتحت أبوابها وقال لهم خزنتها سلام عليكم طبتم فادخلوها خالدين
Wa seeq alladheena attaqaw rabbuhum ilaa al-jannati zumaraa. hattaa idhaa jaa'oohaa wa futihat abwaabuhaa wa qaala lahum khazanatuhaa salaamun `alaykum tibtum fadkhuloohaa khaalideen.
And those who feared their Lord will be driven to Paradise in groups until, when they reach it while its gates have been opened and its keepers say,“Peace be upon you! You have become pure, so enter it to abide eternally therein.” (Surat az-Zumar, 39:73)
The people who believe will be pushed to Paradise by angels and then you have the key, so they welcome you, “Come, come, come! This is for you! Enter it for Eternal Life!”
May Allah put us in Paradise fadkhuloohaa khalideen, for Eternal Life! Yaa fawzan li’l-mustaghfireen astaghfirullah!
This is an introduction to what we will inshaa-Allah explain in Ramadan. wa-`abdu idhaa qaam lis-salaat ghama ash-shaytaan minhu. Let us pray Maghrib.
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