Nasir al-Albani’s slanderous declaration that the companions’ unanimous practice of 20 rak’ahs of Taraweeh is a reprehensible innovation (bid’ah)!

Article Taken from : http://www.masud.co.uk  (By Ahmed ibn Muhammad)

It has been discussed previously in Al-Albani Unveiled, and by the admission of his own followers, that al-Albani has declared the practice of 20 rak’ahs of taraweehprayer in the holy month of Ramadan to be a reprehensible innovation (bid’ah)! What concerns us here is not the actual number of rak’ahs, but the consideration that he has over reached himself by declaring a known practice of the Sahaba (may Allah be pleased with them) to be a bid’ah! To any sane, sincere and objective minded reader the implication of his claim is clear, namely, he has declared the unanimous practise of the bid’ah! Allah forbid.

We will discuss, insha’Allah, what he actually said and prove to him and his blind followers that they are the ones who deliberately overlook Sahih Hadiths on this issue, as well as avoiding the practice and Consensus of the venerable Companions, and our beloved Messenger, Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) who initiated this practice and number. This issue is no doubt a critical test for those who claim to be on the path of the venerable Companions and their Succesors. May Allah be pleased with them all.

Evidence for 20 rak’ahs of Taraweeh from authentic ahadith

In the following synopsis we will provide the most authentic evidence to support the claims of the Hanafi, Maliki, Shafi’i, Hanbali and Zahiri [1] schools of Islamic jurisprudence, and most importantly that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and in the unanimous view and practice of the Sahaba (may Allah be pleased with them all) the rak’ahs of taraweeh are twenty.

The narration’s that will be presented have the stamp of authentication by at least ten distinguished scholars. Al-Imam al-Hafiz Jamaluddin al-Zayla’i[2] has recorded in his book Nasb ur-Rayah[3] that:

“Al-Bayhaqi has related in al-Marifa [4]

(via the following chain of transmission):

Abu Tahir al-Faqih -> Abu Uthman al-Basri -> Abu Ahmad Muhammad ibn Abdal Wahhab -> Khalid ibn Mukhallad -> Muhammad ibn Ja’far -> Yazid ibn Khaseefah -> Sa’eeb ibn Yazid,

who said:

In the time of Umar ibn al-Khattab (radiallahu anhu) the people used to observe 20 rak’ahs and the witr.

Al-Nawawi said in al-Khulasa:

‘Its Isnad is Sahih.'”

Hafiz al-Zayla’i has also mentioned after reporting the authenticity of this Hadith, that Imam al-Bayhaqi has also reported another version of the above narration through a different channel of transmission, in his Sunan al-Kubra. The narration referred to has been mentioned in the footnotes by the council of Islamic scholars (Majlis al-Ulama) who edited Nasb ur-Rayah[5], in the following words:

(Bayhaqi) has related in al-Sunan [6] (via the following isnad):Abu Abdullah al-Hussain ibn Muhammad ibn al-Hussain finjuwayh al-Dinawari – Ahmad ibn Muhammad ibn Ishaq al-Sunni – Abdullah ibn Muhammad ibn Abdul Aziz al-Baghawi – Ali ibn al-J’ad – Ibn Abi Dhib – Yazid ibn Khaseefah – Sa’eeb ibn Yazid,

who said:

“In the time of Umar ibn al-Khattab, radiallahu anhu, they would perform 20 rak’ats in the month of Ramadan. He said (also): And they would recite the Mi’in [7] , and they would lean on their sticks in the time of Uthman ibn Affan, radiallahu anhu, from the discomfort of standing.”

All the men in the (above) isnad are trustworthy, as mentioned by the Indian research scholar, Shaykh al-Nimawi[8], in Athar al-Sunan[9].”

The evidence which proves that Umar (radiallahu anhu) ordered the practise of 20 rak’ahs has been recorded by Shaykh Ali al-Muttaqi al-Hindi[10] in the largest collection of Hadith available today: Kanz al-Ummal fi Sunan al-aqwal wal Af’al[11], as follows from Ubayy ibn Ka’b (radiallahu anhu):

Umar (radiallahu anhu) ordered him (Ubayy) to lead the people in prayer at night in Ramadan, because the people fast during the day and can not recite (the Qur’an) well, therefore it is better that you should recite (the Qur’an) during the night. I (Ubayy) asked: “O commander of the believers, this thing was not done before.” He said: “I know, but it is a good practise”, and so (Ubayy) led (the Companion’s) for 20 rak’ahs.

There are many other narration’s which prove the case for twenty rak’ahs, but some of these narrations are less authentic than others, nevertheless they are weighty enough to back each other up and raise the level of authentication to at least Hasan (good); as Shaykh Nimawi and others have verified.

For the readers benefit one may refer to the following books of Hadith for at least 25 further proofs:

  1. Muwatta Imam Malik from Yazid ibn Ruman [12]
  2. Sunan al-Kubra of Imam al-Bayhaqi [13] from: Ibn Abbas, Yazid ibn Ruman (same as Imam Malik’s narration), Suwayd ibn Ghaflah, Ali ibn Abi Talib etc. Also refer to Marifatus Sunan of al-Bayhaqi.
  3. Musannaf of Imam Abdur Razzaq [14] from: Sa’eeb ibn Yazid and al-Hasan.
  4. Musannaf of Imam Ibn Abi Shaibah [15] from some 13 different isnads.
  5. Qiyam ul-lail[16] of Imam Muhammad ibn Nasr al-Marwazi from: Sa’eeb ibn Yazid, Yazid ibn Ruman, Ibn Mas’ud, A’mash al-Kufi, Ibn Sirin, Malik, al-Shafi’i and others.

A selection of the scholars of Hadith who authenticated and used al-Bayhaqi’s narrations as a proof for 20 rak’ahs of Taraweeh

  1. Imam Yahya al-Nawawi (d. 676 AH)He has authenticated the narration recorded and mentioned above from al-Bayhaqi’s Marifatus-Sunan, in his book al-Khulasa – this was mentioned by Hafiz al-Zayla’i in Nasb ur-Rayah (see above). Besides this narration, he has also recorded the alternative narration recorded by Imam al-Bayhaqi in his Sunan al-Kubra.He has declared this variant narration to be a decisive argument and proof for the Shafi’i Madhhab, as well as saying: “Its Isnad is Sahih”, in his voluminous work: al-Majmu’ Sharh al-Muhadhhab [17].
  2. Imam Jamaluddin Yusuf al-Zayla’i (d. 762 AH)We have mentioned above that Hafiz al-Zayla’i in his analysis of the narration’s found in the Hanafi fiqh book: al-Hidaya, has recalled the narration from al-Bayhaqi’s Marifatus-Sunan, and quoted Imam al-Nawawi as his authority to declare this narration to be Sahih.
  3. Imam Badruddin al-Ayni (d. 855 AH)He said in his famous commentary to Sahih al-Bukhari: Umdat ul-Qari[18] :

    “The argument of our companions (the Hanafi scholars) as well as the Shafi’is and Hanbalis is what al-Bayhaqi has related with an authentic chain of transmission (Sahih Isnad)…”

  4. Imam Ali al-Qari (d. 1014 AH)He has noted in Sharhul-Nuqayah[19] :

    “Imam al-Bayhaqi has reported on genuine authority (Sahih) the performing of 20 rak’ahs of Taraweeh during the periods of Umar, Uthman and Ali (may Allah be pleased with them), and hence there has been consensus on it.”

  5. Imam Kamaluddin ibn al-Humam (d. 861 AH)Imam Ibn al-Humam asserts that it has been established from genuine authority (sahih) that the Companions and their Successors used to say 20 rak’ahs of Taraweeh during the auspicious time of Umar (radiallahu anhu); this authority of Yazid ibn Ruman (as in Imam Malik’s narration) has been reported from Sa’eeb ibn Yazid that, “During Umar’s auspicious time we used to say 20rak’ahs.” The genuineness of this authority has been verified by Imam Nawawi in the synopsis [20].
  6. Imam Taqi al-Din as-Subki (d. 756 AH)
  7. Zayn al-Din al-Iraqi (d. 806 AH) and
  8. Jalaluddin as-Suyuti (d. 911 AH)According to Imam Abdal Hayy Lucknawi[21] in his work Tuhfatul Akhyar[22], Imam Nawawi, Iraqi and Suyuti[23] have all considered Bayhaqi’s narration as reported in his Sunan al-Kubra to be Sahih.Shaykh Habibur Rahman al-A’zami has also affirmed that Nawawi, Iraqi and Suyuti have declared Imam al-Bayhaqi’s narration to be Sahih. He has also reported that Imam al-Subki [24] and Mullah Ali al-Qari have both declared the alternative narration recorded by Bayhaqi in his Marifatus Sunan to be Sahih[25].
  9. Imam Muhammad Shauq Nimawi (d. 1322 AH)We have mentioned previously that Shaykh Nimawi has declared Imam al-Bayhaqi’s narration to be Sahih in Athar al-Sunan [26].
  10. Imam Ibrahim al-Halabi (d. 956 AH)He has noted in al-Kabiri[27] :

    “The argument of the majority of people is the report which Imam al-Bayhaqi has reported with sound authority (Sahih), that during Umar as well as Uthman and Ali’s (may Allah be pleased with them), 20 rak’ahs was performed.”


Other contemporary

Other prominent scholars who have used Imam al-Bayhaqi’s narrations, besides other proofs include: Shaykh Habibur Rahman al-A’zami (see above), Shaykh Isma’il Ansari (see later), Shaykh al-Muqri in Tahqeeq al-Taraweeh, Shaykh Zafar Ahmad Uthmani in his monumental I’la as-Sunan[28], Shaykh Abdur Rahim Lajpuri in Fatawa al-Rahimiyya[29], Shaykh Ahmad Khan in Ja’al Haqq[30], Shaykh Taqi al-Uthmani in Dars-e-Tirmidhi[31] and many others.

A writer once claimed that Imam al-Bukhari held the view that the rak’ahs of Taraweeh were eight, excluding the witr. What is surprising to note is that despite his bold ascription of this view to Imam al-Bukhari, he did not furnish one shed of proof or reference to the works of Imam al-Bukhari to verify his claim.

On the contrary, the commentators of Sahih al-Bukhari, like Hafiz Ibn Hajar and Hafiz al-Ayni have not ascribed any view for 8 rak’ahs to Imam al-Bukhari to our knowledge. What is unsurprising to note is that the two aforementioned scholars of Hadith have mentioned the proofs in favour of 20 rak’ahs. One may raise the catechism – if Imam al-Bukhari had held the view ascribed to him, would there be no doubt that his great student, Imam Abu Isa al-Tirmidhi[32], would not have failed to mention this?

For we know that Imam al-Tirmidhi only knew of either 20 or 41 rak’ah[33] in his time.

He has recorded in al-Jami us-Sahih, that Umar[34], Ali (may Allah be pleased with them) and other Companions of the Prophet (peace be upon him) used to perform 20rak’ahs of Taraweeh, as well as saying that Sufyan al-Thauri (d. 161 AH), Abdullah ibn al-Mubarak (d. 181 AH) and al-Shafi’i (d. 204 AH) held the same view. He has also quoted Imam al-Shafi’i as saying that he saw the people of Makkah performing 20 rak’ahs of Taraweeh.

The only proof to suggest that the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) performed 20 rak’ahs has been reported on the authority of Abdullah ibn Abbas (radiallahu anhu):

Verily, the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him) in the month of Ramadan, used to perform 20 rak’ahs and the witr (afterwards) without congregation.”[35]

This narration has been shown to have a weak (da’eefisnad by the verifying scholars like al-Hafiz Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani [36], Hafiz al-Zayla’i and others, due to the presence of the narrator: Abu Shaiba[37] Ibrahim ibn Uthman. He was the grandfather of the Imam of Hadith: Abu Bakr ibn Abi Shaiba, as well as being a Qadi; but as for his status as a reporter of Hadith, he has been declared to be discarded (matrook) by Hafiz Ibn Hajar in Taqreeb ul-Tahdhhib[38] and al-Bayhaqi has declared him to be weak in al-Sunan al-Kubra[39].

One may wish to note that al-Albani has gone to the added length of declaring Ibn Abbas’ narration to be Maudu (fabricated) [40], whereas no previous scholars of Hadith have gone beyond declaring its isnad to be da’eef (weak). This is nothing strange, for al-Albani usually goes to the added lengths and extremities of declaring narrations which do not suit his whims and desires to be either da’eef or maudu.

An interesting study prepared and published on this issue by a Shaykh who is said to have memorized the six most authentic collections of Hadith, is available to verify this assertion.

Let us now see what a number of Imams of sacred law have said about the aforementioned narration from Ibn Abbas (radiallahu anhu).

  1. Imam Ahmad al-Tahtawi[41] has said in Sharh Durr al-Mukhtar[42]

    On the authority of Ibn Abbas’ statement, 20 rak’ahs of Taraweeh has been estblished from the Holy Prophet’s (peace be upon him) practice.

  2. Shaykh Abdal Haqq al-Dehlawi[43] has been quoted by the author of Fatawa Rahimiyya [44] as follows: “Shaykh Abdul Haqq Muhaddith of Delhi writes in his book, Fath-e-Sirr-ul-Mannan:

    The obvious thing is that, according to the holy Companions, the Holy Prophet’s (peace be upon him) saying 20 rak’ahs had been established, as is mentioned in Ibn Abbas’ tradition, and for this reason Umar (radiallahu anhu) adopted 20 rak’ahs . . .

    He also quoted Shaykh Abdal Haqq as saying from his book: Ma sabata minas Sunnah[45],

    According to our belief, the taraweeh consists of 20 rak’ahs, for Bayhaqi has reported with sound authority that the holy Companions (may Allah be pleased with them) used to perform 20 rak’ahs during Umar’s time; moreover, this practice continued during Uthman and Ali’s (may Allah be pleased with them) periods also.‘”

  3. Shaykh Abdur Rahim continued to say in his Fatawa:

    The fact is that Hadrat Ibn Abbas and Hadrat Umar are both Companions; there is no ‘weak’ narrator between them, wherefore Ibn Abbas’ tradition may be called weak and the Companion’s action may be considered to be based on a weak tradition. Their action was based on a sound basis; how can those who follow them be called ‘the deluded’? In short, according to the Companion’s reckoning, the afore said hadith is not at all weak, though, due to the inclusion later of a weak narrator. Ibrahim ibn Uthman may be according to the latter-day authorities called weak ‘by way of narration’, but ‘intelligibly’ it must be authentic because the well-guided Caliphs and other Companion’s conformity to and continuance of 20 rak’ahs is the proof of its being reliable.

    Allamah Bahrul-Ulum[46] says:

    The Companions continued conformity to 20 rak’ahs is the context and sign of the soundness of this tradition.’

In support of what we have mentioned, let us quote to you what a leader of Salafiyyism has mentioned in his book: Criticism of Hadith among Muslims with reference to Sunan Ibn Maja[47] :

Shafi’i also recognizes a weak Hadith as authentic (sahih) if it is found to be accepted by the whole ummah (see al-Sakhawi: Fath al-Mugith). But he does not accept Malik’s view of restricting the practise to the people of Madinah. According to the later scholars of the Hanafi school like Ibn al-Humam, a Hadith will be declared Sahih, if it is supported by the practise of the Ummah (see Abdal Rashid Nu’mani: Ma tamusu ilaihe al-Haja, p. 18). Among traditionalists, Tirmidhi often remarks, after quoting a less authentic Hadith:

‘It is being practised by the people of learning (Ahl-ul-Ilm).’ Suyuti deduces: ‘It indicates that the Hadith is supported by the sayings of the people of learning. More than one scholar has said that a Hadith is declared Sahih if supported by the sayings of the people of learning, even if it lacks a proper Isnad (see Suyuti: al-Ta’aqubat, folio 20).'”

In closing this section, consider what Imam Abu Hanifah (rahimahullah) said to his student Imam Abu Yusuf (rahiamhullah). Shaykh Anwar Shah Kashmiri stated in Fayd ul-Bari Sharh Sahih al-Bukhari:

Imam Abu Yusuf (rahimahullah) asked Imam Abu Hanifah (rahimahullah), ‘Did Hadrat Umar (radiallahu anhu) have any compact from the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) for 20 rak’ahs of Taraweeh?’ The Imam replied, ‘Hadrat Umar (radiallahu anhu) was not one to invent on his own; certainly he had some proof for this!'” [48]


Ijma us-Sahabah

A number of Imams of sacred law have inferred from the evidences available, that there is a definite consensus of the Companions (Ijma us-Sahabah)[49] on this issue. For the readers benefit we will provide some quotes below (including one from a “Salafi” writer).

  1. Imam Ali ul-Qari al-Hanafi (d. 1014 AH)He said in Sharh ul-Nuqayah[50]:

    Imam Bayhaqi has reported on genuine authority (sahih) about the performance of 20 rak’ahs of Taraweeh during the periods of Umar, Uthman and Ali (may Allah be pleased with them), and hence there has been consensus (Ijma) on it.

  2. Shaykh ul-Islam Ibn Hajar al-Haytami (d. 974 AH)Allamah Abdal Hayy Lucknawi has reported in Tuhfat ul-Akhyar[51] and in his Majmu’ Fatawa[52], the fact that Hafiz Ibn Hajar al-Haytami has declared Ijma us-Sahabah on the rak’ahs of Taraweeh being twenty.
  3. Imam Muwaffaq al-Din Ibn Qudama al-Maqdisi (d. 620)The leading Imam of the Hanbalis in his time has declared in his famous book of fiqh: al-Mughni[53] :

    There has been the Companion’s consensus (Ijma us-Sahabah) on 20 rak’ahs of Taraweeh.

  4. Shaykh Bahrul-Ulum Abdul Ali ibn Nizamuddin (d. 1235)He said in Rasa’il ul-Arkan[54]:

    Then there was unanimity regarding the 20 rak’ahs.

  5. Shah Abdul Aziz Dehlawi[55] (d. 1824 CE)He has declared in his Majmu’ Fatawa Azizi [56] :

    Thereafter, they (the Companions) adopted twenty (rak’ahs of Taraweeh) and three rak’ahs (of witr), on which number consensus had been formed.

  6. Shaykh Qutubuddin Khan (d. 1289 AH):
    He has stated in his commentary to the Hadith collection known as Mishkat ul-Masabih: Madhahir ul-Haqq [57] :

    But the Companions consensus was formed on this that the Taraweeh consists of 20 Rak’ahs.

  7. Imam Kamaluddin ibn al-Humam (d. 861 AH)He has said in Fathul-Qadir[58] :

    At last unanimity was formed on 20 rak’ahs of prayer and this alone is in succession.

  8. Imam Malik ibn Anas (d. 179 AH)It was written in the most authentic record of Imam Malik’s most accurate sayings[59], known as al-Mudawwanah al-Kubrah:

    Ibn al-Qasim said, ‘The rak’ahs (of taraweeh) with witr are thirty nine.’ Imam Malik said, ‘This is what the people have agreed upon from amongst the predecessors, and the people have not stopped doing it.’” [60]

  9. Shaykh Shabir Ahmad al-Uthmani (d. 1369 AH)Shaykh Abdur Rahim said in his Fatawa[61] :

    Allamah Shabir Ahmad Uthmani says that none of the Companions ever took exception to 20 rak’ahs, and hence all of them were unanimous on twenty rak’ahs.[62]

  10. Nawab Siddiq Hasan Khan Bhopali (d. 1307 AH)

    He was one of the leading personalities of the “Salafi” movement in India. It has been recorded by him in his Awnu’l Bari[63] :

    The practice of 20 rak’ahs established during Hadrat Umar’s time has been considered by the Ulama as consensus.

    All praise be to Allah, the synopsis of the proofs, their authenticity and the resulting of Ijma us-Sahabah, has been demonstrated by way of recoursing to some of the most reputable scholars of the various Madhhabs of this blessed Ummah.

    I (Ahmed ibn Muhammad) asked my teacher, the faqih, Shaykh Muhammad Asaddar Ali (b. 1911), may Allah preserve him: “What do you say about those people who claim to be the followers of the pious predecessors (Salaf us-Salihin), but insist on praying 8 rak’ahs of Taraweeh year in year out?” He replied:

    I take it you are referring to those people who go around with the title ‘Salafi’ over their heads. I will say a few things about these pseudo-Salafites. They are violators of the Companions (may Allah be pleased with them) consensus on this and other issues – just as their master Ibn Taymiyya was; and the scholars of the past have declared the violators of the Ijma us-Sahabah to be either corrupt innovators or even unbelievers – depending on the nature of the question. The Muhaddith, Shaykh Abdal Hayy Lucknawi (rahimahullah) has declared in his Taliqatul-Hidaya[64] : One who performs 8 rak’ahs of Taraweeh will be an abandoner of the insisted sunnah.’ So, if you come across a man who has been shown the proofs and what the vast majority of scholars, including the Imams like Abu Hanifah, Malik, Shafi’i and Ahmad ibn Hanbal have said; but still persists on avoiding the Companions unanimity on 20 rak’ahs of Taraweeh, and prefers 8 rak’ahs – then know that he is not a Salafi, rather a follower of his desires and avoider of the Companion’s (may Allah be pleased with them) unanimous practice. And Allah knows best.

    O believers, have we not heard that Allah has said:

    O you who believe, Obey Allah, and obey the Messenger, And those charged with authority among you. If you differ in anything among yourselves, refer it to Allah and His Messenger, if ye do believe in Allah and the Last Day: That is best, and most suitable for final determination” [65]

    O believers, have we not heard that Allah’s Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) has said on two occasions:

    Hold fast to my Sunnah and the Sunnah of the Rightly Guided Caliphs[66], clamp your molars upon it, avoid new novelties, for every novelty is an innovation, and every innovation is misguidance.” [67]

    Allah will never let my Ummah agree upon misguidance, and the hand of Allah is over the group (Jama’ah), so follow the great mass of believers (Sawad ul-‘Azam), and whoever dissents from them departs to hell.” [68]

    We will finish this section by mentioning the titles of two books written on this issue. The first is a book written by a Qadi at the Shariah court in Medinah al-Munawwara, as well as being a lecturer in the Holy Prophet’s (peace and blessings be upon him) mosque – Shaykh Atiyya Muhammad Salim, and the second is by – Shaykh Isma’il ibn Muhammad al-Ansari. As the title below suggests, al-Ansari’s book is a refutation of al-Albani’s research and views on this issue.

    1. Al-Taraweeh – Akthar min alf Aam fi Masjid al-Nabi alaihis-salatu wa sallam[69].
    2. Tashih Hadith Salatul– Taraweeh Ishrin Rak’ah wa’l Radd ala al-Albani fi Tadaeefah[70].

    Finally, the reader may be interested to know that even today, just as in the time of the Salaf us-Salihin (may Allah be well pleased with them), 20 rak’ahs of taraweeh is still being adhered to in Makkah and Madinah.

May Allah keep us on the practice of the Companions and guide those who deliberately avoid so and claim to be on the path of the righteous Salaf. Amin.

VIDEO PROOF:

1: 8 or 20 rak’ahs for Tarawih prayers?


 Notes/References

  1. The view that Imam’s Abu Hanifah, Malik, Shafi’i, Ibn Hanbal and Dawud al-Zahiri all preferred 20 rak’ahs of taraweeh excluding the witr has been mentioned by Qadi Ibn Rushd in Bidayat al-Mujtahid (1/239).
  2. He was a famous Hanafi Hafiz of Hadith, as well as being one of the teachers of Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani. He died in the year 762 AH, rahimahullah.
  3. 2/154, Majlis al-Ulama, India, 4 vols. 1357 AH.
  4. The full title is al-Marifatus-Sunan wa’l athar.
  5. 2/154, footnote 2.
  6. 2/496.
  7. A group of medium sized chapters from the Qur’an.
  8. His full name was Muhammad Shauq al-Nimawi; (d. 1322 AH – rahimahullah).
  9. 2/54.
  10. He died in the year 975 AH, rahimahullah.
  11. 4/284, no. 5787 (8 vols. 1st edn; Hyderabad, India, 1312-14 AH), reported by him on the authority of the Muhaddith, Ibn Man’i.
  12. This report is very similar to Bayhaqi’s narration (see Muwatta, 6.2, no. 5, p. 48, English edn.).
  13. 2/496-7.
  14. 4/260-3, no’s. 7730-1 & 7733.
  15. 2/392-4. Printed in Hyderabad, India, 1387/1967.
  16. PP. 91-2, India, 1320 AH.
  17. 4/32-3, printed with Imam al-Rafi’i’s (d. 623 AH) Fath al-Aziz and Hafiz Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani’s Talkhis ul-habir in the footnotes; Idara al-Tibat al-Muniriyyah, Egypt.
  18. 7/178, Idara al-Tibat al-Muniriyyah, Egypt.
  19. 1/104.
  20. Quoted in Fatawa Rahimiyya (1/241) of Mufti Abdur Rahim; on the authority of Ibn al-Humam’s Fath al-Qadir (1/407).
  21. He was a celebrated Indian Muhaddith who has also been recognised by the “Salafiyya” for his services to Islam. He passed away in 1304 AH. Rahimahullah.
  22. P. 192, quoted in Is Taraweeh 20 raka’ats? p. 22, Madrasah Arabia Islamia, Azadville, South Africa.
  23. According to the aforementioned booklet (Is Taraweeh 20 raka’ats?), p. 5; Imam Nawawi has authenticated Bayhaqi’s narration (from his Sunan) in al-Khulasah, al-Iraqi has authenticated it in Sharh Taqreeb, and Suyuti has authenticated it in his book on Taraweeh: Masabeeh.
  24. See his Sharh Minhaj.
  25. See Shaykh al-A’zami’s Raka’at Taraweeh, p. 63, Ma’arif press, Azamgarh, India.
  26. 2/54.
  27. P. 388.
  28. 7/47, chapter on Taraweeh.
  29. 1/235-300.
  30. PP. 105-114 .
  31. 1/651-664.
  32. He passed away in the year 279 AH. Rahimahullah.
  33. The practice of 41 rak’ahs was that of the people of Madinah in the time of the Caliph Umar ibn Abdul Aziz and Imam Malik ibn Anas (may Allah be pleased with them). It is in reality 20 rak’ahs, for the people of Madinah used to perform an extra 4 rak’ahs without congregation,(after the performance of the standard 4 rak’ahs); hence this amounts to an extra 16 rak’ahs on top of the standard 20rak’ahs. After this they would perform 3 rak’ahs of witr, and sometimes another 2 rak’ahs of nafl on top, making a total of 41rak’ahs (20 rak’ahtaraweeh + 16 nafl + 3 witr + 2 nafl = 41). The reason why the people of Medinah introduced an additional 16rak’ahs was due to the fact that the people of Makkah would make tawaf around the Ka’bah after every 4 rak’ahs of taraweeh, hence the Madinans wanted to compensate for this. Allah knows best. See Shaykh Anwar Shah Kashmiri’s: Tirmidhi al-ma’ruf ba arfash shazzi (1/329) for details.
  34. 3/170, Ahmad Shakir edition, edited by Fu’ad Abdal Baqi, Maktaba Faisalia, Makkah.
  35. This narration has been collected by Bayhaqi in al-Sunan al-Kubra (2/496), Ibn Abi Shaiba in al-Musannaf (2/394), Ibn Adi in al-Kamil (1/2), Tabarani in al-Kabeer (3/148), Ibn Manda in al-Muntakhab min al-fawaid (2/268), Baghawi in Majmu as-Sahaba, Musnad Abd ibn Humaid and others.
  36. See Ibn Hajar’s Talkhis ul-habir fi takhreej ahadith al-Rafi’i al-kabir (1/119) and Al-Matalib al-‘Aliyya (1/146, no. 534) or Zaylai’sNasb ur-Rayah (2/153).
  37. He passed away in the year 235 AH. His Musannaf has been printed in some 15 volumes.
  38. 1/39, no. 241.
  39. 2/496.
  40. See his “al-Da’eefah“, (2/35, no. 560), 3rd edn; Maktaba al-Islamia, Amman, 1406 AH.
  41. He was a leading Egyptian Hanafi scholar who has written a number of well known and regularly used commentaries to classical Hanafi fiqh texts. He passed away in the year 1231/1816 CE. Rahimahullah.
  42. 1/466.
  43. d. 1052 AH in India.
  44. Mufti Abdur Rahim Lajpuri, 1/280, Maktaba Rahimiyyah, Rander, India.
  45. P. 223.
  46. He died in 1235/1820 CE, rahimahullah. Shaykh Abdur Rahim has quoted this statement from his book Rasa’il ul-Arkan, p. 138.
  47. P. 131, Hasan, Suhaib, Al-Qur’an society, 2nd edn; 1407/1986.
  48. This report is also found in Imam al-Shurunbulali’s Maraqi ul-Falah, p. 81, and Imam Ibn Nujaim al-Misri’s Bahr ur-Ra’iq, 2/66.
  49. Ijma us-Sahabah is the third A NAME=”49″>Ijma us-Sahabah is the third source of Islamic law after the Qur’an and Sunnah.
  50. 1/104.
  51. P. 197.
  52. 1/182.
  53. 1/803.
  54. P. 138.
  55. He was the son of the famous Indian scholar: Shah Waliullah.
  56. 1/126.
  57. 1/433.
  58. 1/470; quoted in Fatawa Rahimiyya (1/245).
  59. This book contains the direct questions asked by Imam Malik’s two famous disciples: Ibn al-Qasim and Ibn Wahb to their teacher. It was compiled by Ibn al-Qasim’s student: Qadi Sahnoon (see 1/193-4).
  60. The reason for praying 39 rak’ahs has been explained previously. The fact that Imam Malik preferred this number has been verified by the Maliki Qadi: Ibn Rushd (d. 595 AH) in Bidayat al-Mujtahid (1/239). He has also quoted a narration from Ibn Abi Shaibah proving 39 rak’ahs was in vogue during the caliphate of Umar ibn Abdul Aziz.
  61. 1/249.
  62. Quoted from his Fathul-Mulhim Sharh Sahih al-Muslim, (2/320).
  63. 4/307, quoted in Fatawa Rahimiyya, (1/245).
  64. 1/131.
  65. Qur’an 4:59.
  66. Abu Bakr, Umar, Uthman and Ali (may Allah be pleased with them).
  67. A Sahih Hadith recorded in (no. 4590), Sunan al-Tirmidhi (5/43, no. 2676), Sunan Ibn Majah (1/15-6, no. 42), Sunan al-Darimi (no. 96), Ibn Abi Aasim in al-Sunnah (no. 54), Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal in his Musnad (4/126), al-Hakim in al-Mustadrak (1/95-6) and Ibn Hibban in his Sahih (1/166, no. 5).
  68. A narration authenticated and reported by al-Hakim (1/116), and al-Dhahabi agreed with him. A very similar report has been recorded by al-Tirmidhi (4/2167). Imam al-Munawi said in commentary to Tirmidhi’s Hadith: (Allah’s hand is over the Jama’ah) meaning his protection and preservation of them, signifying that the collectivity of the people of Islam are in Allah’s fold, so be also in Allah’s shelter, in the midst of them, and do not separate yourselves from them. (And whoever descents from them departs to hell) meaning that whoever diverges from the overwhelming majority concerning what is lawful or unlawful and on which the Community does not differ has slipped off the path of guidance and this will lead him to hell. (see Imam al-Azizi’s: al-Siraj al-Munir Sharh al-Jami us-Saghir, 3/449, cf. Reliance of the Traveller, p. 25).
  69. Printed by Maktaba Dar al-Turath, Madinah al-Munawwarah, 1st edn. 1407/1987.
  70. Printed by Maktaba Rashidia, Pakistan

The Blessed Month of Ramadan al Kareem

2014_ramadan_kareem_photos “O you who believe! Fasting is prescribed for you as it was prescribed for those before you in order that you might learn piety . . . . The month of Ramadan is that wherein was revealed the Qur’an, as a guidance to mankind, and clear proofs of the guidance, and the Criterion. So, whoever among you witnesses the month should fast.” [Al-Qur’an 2:183, 185] 


“Every deed of the Son of Adam is for himself, except fasting – it is for Me, and I shall reward it.”

[Muslim, Abu Dawud, Nasa’i, Tirmidhi, Ibn Majah]

Hadrat Abu Hurairah (RadiAllahu Anhu) reported that the Messenger of Allah ﷺ has said, “When Ramadan begins, the doors of heaven are opened.” A version has, “the doors of Paradise are opened and the doors of Hell are closed, and the Satans are tied with chains.” Another version has, “the doors of Mercy are opened.”

[Sahih al-Bukhari Vol 1, Page 255 and Sahih al-Muslim, Vol 1, Page 346]

Hadrat Shaykh ‘Abd al-Haq Muhaddith-e-Dehlwi (rah) comments:

The meaning of the “Doors of heaven” being opened is the continuous descending of mercy, and the ascension of good deeds to the Court of the Almighty without any obstacle (preventing it from ascending). It also means the acceptance of (permissible) supplications. The meaning of the “doors of Paradise” being opened is being encouraged and granted the ability to perform good deeds, and the acceptance of these good deeds. The meaning of the “Doors of Hell” being closed is the protection of the souls of those who fast, from things which have been forbidden by the Islamic Law, and rescue from the things which provoke a person on doing bad deeds. It also means to break the desire which the heart has of things of lust. The meaning of Satan being tied with chains is the sealing off of all the ways by which evil whispers enter the mind. [Ashi’ah al-Lam’at]

Hadrat Abu Hurairah (RadiAllahu Anhu) reported that the Messenger of Allah ﷺ has said, “Whoever fasts duringRamadan with faith and seeking his reward (from Allah) all his past sins will be forgiven. Whoever prays during the night in Ramadan with faith seeking his reward (from Allah) all his past sins will be forgiven. And whoever passes Lailat-ul-Qadr in prayer with faith and seeking his reward (from Allah the Most Exalted) all his past sins will be forgiven.” 

[Sahih al-Bukhari Vol 1, Page 255 and Sahih al-Muslim, Vol 1, Page 259]

Hadrat Abu Hurairah (RadiAllahu Anhu) reported that the Messenger of Allah ﷺ has said, “When the first nightof Ramadan comes, the satans and the rebellious Jinn are chained, the doors of hell are closed and not one of them is opened (during the entire the month of Ramadan); the doors of Paradise are opened and not on of them is closed (the entire month of Ramadan); and a crier calls, ‘Those who desire what is good, come forward, and those who desire evil refrain from it’, and many people are freed from Hell by Allah, and that happens every night.”

[Tirmidhi, Vol 1, Page 153 and Ibn Maajah, Vol 1, Page 118]

Hadrat Salman al-Farisi (RadiAllahu Anhu) reported that on the last day of Sha’ban the Messenger of Allah ﷺ delivered a sermon. He said, “O people, a great month, a blessed month, a month wherein there is a night which is better than a thousand months has come to you. Allah has made the observance of fasting during it as obligatory, and the standing (in prayer) in its nights as voluntary. Whoever draws near to Allah during it with some good (voluntary, optional) act he is like the one who fulfils an obligatory duty in another month, and whoever fulfils an obligatory duty in it is like the one who fulfils seventy obligatory duties in another month.

[Mishkat, Page 173]

It is the month of endurance and the reward of endurance is Paradise. It is the month of sharing with others, and a month in which the believer’s provision is increased. Whoever gives one who has been fasting something with which to break his fast it shall result in the forgiveness of his sins and it shall save him from Hell, and he will have a reward equal to his without his reward being diminished in any respect.”

We said, “O Messenger of Allah, no one from among us has the means to give one who is fasting something with which to break his fast. He said, “Allah gives this reward to him who gives one who is fasting some milk, or a date, or a drink of water with which to break his fast; and whoever gives a full meal to one who is fasting Allah will give him the drink from my Pond (fountain – Kauthar) and he will not feel the thirst till he enters Paradise.It is a month whose beginning is Mercy, whose middle is Forgiveness, and whose end is Freedom from Hell. Whoever makes things easy for his slave during it, Allah will forgive him and free him from Hell.”

Hadrat Abu Hurairah (RadiAllahu Anhu) reported that the Messenger of Allah  has said, “If one (who is fasting) does not give up falsehood and action according to it, Allah has no need that he should give up his food and his drink.” 

[Sahih al-Bukhari Vol 1, Page 255]

Shaykh ‘Abd Al-Haq Muhaddith-e-Dehlwi (rah) comments:

This means that his fast shall not be accepted, as the main purpose of fast being made obligatory on a Muslim is not that one stays hungry and thirsty; but in fact the main purpose is to break the desire for lust, and to cool the fire of selfishness, so that the soul instead of being inclined towards the desires of lust, it becomes obedient towards the commands of The Almighty. [Ashi’ah al-Lam’at Vol 2 Page 85]

Hadrat Anas ibn Malik al-Ka’bi (RadiAllahu anhu) reported that the Messenger of Allah ﷺ has said, “Allah has remitted half the prayer to the traveller ; and fasting to the traveller, the woman who is suckling an infant and the woman who is pregnant.” 

[Tirmidhi, Vol 1, Page 152 and Sunan Abi Dawud, Vol 1, Page 327]

Hadrat Shaykh ‘Abd al-Haq Muhaddith-e-Dehlwi (rah) comments:The Islamic Law allowing the omission of fast for the breast-feeding and the pregnant woman is only in the situation when fasting shall harm or damage herself or the child (otherwise there is no permission not to fast). [Ashi’ah al-Lam’ah Vol 2 Page 94]

Hadrat Abu Ayyub al-Ansari (RadiAllahu anhu) reported that the Messenger of Allah ﷺ has said, “Whoever fasts during Ramadan then follows it with six days in Shawwal, it will be like a perpetual fast .” 

[Sahih al-Muslim, Vol 1, Page 369]


Warning against abandoning fasting in Ramadan

“Whoever breaks his fast in Ramadan without a [valid] concession or illness, he cannot repay it, even if he were to fast the rest of his life.”

[Tirmidhi, Nasa’i, Ibn Majah]


RULES RELATED TO FASTING….

THE OBLIGATION OF FASTING

a) The time for fasting is from the rising of the second dawn until the setting of the sun.

b) Fasting is: abstention from eating, drinking and sexual intercourse by day with the intention.

THE INTENTION

The fasting is valid with an intention from the night, but if one did not intend until the morning, the intention suffices him between [dawn] and {the middle of the day}.

1.  Things which invalidates fasting and requires full recompense

1.1 If someone intentionally does one of the following without any valid excuse(see 6 below)

a) Does not fast at all

b) Breaks fast by eating, drinking and sexual activities

c) Assuming that cupping has broken ones fast thus quit fasting for the day.

1.2 Expiation for the above is to

a) Fast unceasingly for two months (60 days), if one breaks fast during this one has to start anew.

b) If unable to do so, it is to feed 60 needy persons two full meal

c) If unable to do so, it is to free one slave.
1.3 Things that break fast and requires one to fast similar numbers of days in recompense

a) If something is entered into the body during the hours when one is supposed to fast, irrelevant of how it entered into the body.(see 5)

  • To eat something which is not food such as stone particle or smoking anything.
  • When water enters stomach while gargling
  • When one is fed by force even when one is sleeping or unconscious
  • Inject medicine, place them on wounds which eventually gets in.
  • Eating by mistake thinking it is still night or iftar time is due while it is not.
  • Involuntary full mouth vomiting and subsequent swallowing of it or part of it.
  • When one is force into sexual intercourse or when one is sleeping or unconscious

b) Fasting without intention
c) Breaking (iftar) fast without the intention of doing so.
d) Lustful kissing of ones spouse
e) Emission of semen due to touching, kissing, masturbation.
f) Intentional vomiting.
2. Offensive acts during fasting

a) Backbiting, slander
b) To lie or deceive
c) To use abusive language
d) Not having iftar
e) Taste a food without swallowing it, using toothpaste.
f) Gargling water due to thirsts or hot weather.
g) Wrapping oneself with wet clothes.
h) Throwing up intentionally
i) Weakening the body (e.g. strenuous sport)
j) Gathering saliva and swallowing it;
3. Days when fasting is forbidden

a) Day of Eid al Fitr (Eid of Ramadan)
b) During Eid al ADHa, 10, 11, 12 and 13 of month of Dhul Hijjah
4. Events when it is allowed to break the fast and fast later the similar number of days

a) If fasting aggravates health-condition
b) Snake biting
c) Thirsts due to newly developed disease
d) Genuine danger for a pregnant mother, or for her fetus.
e) Genuine fear for the life of a suckling infant
f) Reason to fear death
g) Menstruation
h) If one is a traveller

5. Things that do not break fast

a) Those things which would otherwise break fast does not do so when one is unaware of the fact that one is fasting (complete forgetfulness of fasting).

b) Entrance of insects (i.e mosquitos), smoke and dust from natural environment does not break fast.

c) Wet dream, swallowing ones own saliva when still in the mouth, brushing teeth, smearing oil, ointment on unwounded body do not break fast. or used antimony [in his eyes],

d) If one is overcome by vomiting, his fast is not broken.

6. Etiquettes and desirable practices

  1. Preparing for the month.
  2. Bringing to mind the bounty of Allah.
  3. Purifying one’s intention
  4. Pre-dawn meal (suhur) as late as safely possible.
  5. Not unnecessarily delaying the breakingof the fast.
  6. Performing salat al-Maghrib soon after breakign the fast, then returning to eat.
  7. Making du`a at the time of breaking the fast.
  8. Enabling others to break their fasts.
  9. Abstaining from all forbidden deeds.
  10. Maintaining a pleasant disposition.
  11. Abundant reciting of the Qur’an.
  12. Abundant charity.
  13. Performing tarawih prayers.

7. Miscellaneous

a) The intention of fasting can be made as late as just before noon, if one forgets to do so during the previous night. If one passes noon without making the intention ones fasting is invalid.(1.3b)

b) One should eat before the day breaks even when one is not hungry.

c) For a woman whenever during the day menstruation stops she should be observing fasting even though it is not a fast for her. She should fast if it happens just before morning and did not have enough time to take shower and eat.

d) If a woman menstruates, she stops fasting and makes up [fasting for the days of menstruation].

e)  Someone who lost consciousness in Ramadan does not make up the day on which the loss of consciousness occurred, but he makes up that which came after it.

f) If a traveller arrives, or a [menstruating] woman attains purity with part of the day [remaining], they abstain [from those things which invaliate fasting] for the rest of that day.

May Allah keep us on the Straight Path.

Aameen.

2014_ramadan_kareem_mubarak_wallpaper ramadan_kareem_2014_wallpaper ramadan_kareem_by_mezoomar-d41r8f7 ramadan-kareem

Taken from:

1. “Anwaar al-Hadith” by Hadrat Allama Mawlana Mufti Jalal al-Din al-Qadiri al-Amjadi Radi ALLAHu Ta’ala Anho, Chapter 6, Page 152 to 157.

2. http://www.islamicacademy.org

 

Jami is “Ishq” and Ishq is “Jami”

Following is a great couplet from the poetry of Maulana Jami (Alaihi Rahma) , a great lover of the Holy Prophet ﷺ.

YaRasulallah

O Messenger of God! If only like the dog of the Companions of the Cave,
I could be in Paradise among your Companions.
Is it right that their dog is in Paradise while I am in Hell?
He was the dog of those Companions; I am the dog of yours!

The above couplet reminds of another great verse which goes something like;

Oh Holy Prophet, would that your dog was called Jami,
You would call for your dog and I would come running.

Subhan Allah! Such poetry is an inspiration for the seekers of the truth as well as shows us a way of true love.

Why do you deny the Mi’raj?

Muhammad_PBUH_by_kamrannaqvi

Jalal-ud-Din Rumi (Alaihi Rahma) in his famous Mathnavi states:

“The moon traverses the constellations of the zodiac in a single night,
so why do you deny the mi’raj (Ascension)?
That wondrous, unique Pearl (the Prophet) is like a hundred moons
–for when he made one gesture, the moon was split in two.
And the marvel that he displayed in splitting the moon
was in keeping with the weakness of the creatures’ perception.
The work and business of the prophets and messengers
is beyond the spheres and the stars.
Transcend the spheres and their revolution!
Then you will see that work and business.”

Sayyidina ‘Umar’s Poetry to the Messenger of Allahﷺ

1401825615253_1

After the death of the Prophetﷺ, Sayyidina Umar (RadiAllahu Anhu) began to weep and said: “O Prophet of Godﷺ, my parents be sacrificed to you. You used to deliver sermon to the people standing on a wood of grape. When there were large numbers of people, you have taken a pulpit to make them hear but the wood began to tremble at your separation. It became quiet when you placed your hand on it. At the battle of Hunain, your followers were innumerable but they became attached to you.

May my parents be sacrificed to thee, O Prophetﷺ, your excellence has reached God, as God will be obeyed if you are obeyed. God says: ‘He who obeys the Messenger of God obeys God.’ O Messenger of Godﷺ, may my parents be sacrificed to you, your excellence has reached God. He gave you the news of pardon before the news of sin. For that God says: ‘God has forgiven you for what you enjoin them.’

O Prophet of Godﷺ, my parents be sacrificed to you. Your excellence has reached God. He sent you as the last Prophet but He described you before all. For that, He says: ‘When I took covenant from you and the Prophets’ etc.

O Prophet of Godﷺ, may my parents be sacrificed to you, your excellence has reached God. The dwellers of Hell will wish how good it would have been if they had obeyed you. When they will receive punishment in different stages of Hell, they will say: ‘Alas, had we obeyed God and His Messenger!’

O Messenger of Godﷺ, may my parents be sacrificed to you. Moses (peace be upon him), son of Imran, made to flow a stream of water from a stone. Is it not more wonderful that water flowed down from your fingers? O Prophet of Godﷺ, may my parents be sacrificed to you. God made the wind subservient to Sulayman (peace be upon him) . He went one month’s journey at dawn and one month’s journey at dusk. Is it not more wonderful than the above that you travelled one night riding on a buraq to the seven heavens, and said prayer at the Ka’bah the same very night? O Prophet of Godﷺ, may my parents be sacrificed to you. God gave miracle to Jesus Christ (peace be upon him), son of Mary, to make a dead man alive. Is it not more wonderful than this that cooked mutton mixed with poison spoke with you, saying; ‘Don’t eat me. I have got poison mixed with me.’?

O Prophet of Godﷺ, may my parents be sacrificed to you. Noah (peace be upon him) prayed to God about his people: ‘O my Lord, don’t leave a single house of the unbelievers in the world.’ If you had prayed against us in a similar manner, we would have been destroyed. Your back was burdened, your front teeth were martyred, yet you did not invoke against them but for good, and said: ‘O God, forgive my people, as they know not what they do.’

O Prophet of Godﷺ, may my parents be sacrificed to you. Noah (peace be upon him) was not followed by so many people during his long stray as you have been followed in a short time. Innumerable people believed you. O Prophet of Godﷺ, may my parents be sacrificed to you, if you had not permitted people lower in rank than you to come to you, we could not have taken seat with you. If you had not married women except those of equal rank with you, we would have no connection with you. If you had not taken meal except with the people of equal rank with you, we could not get the honour of taking food with you. By God, you kept company with us, married in our families, put on sufi dress, rode on donkeys, took companions behind, ate in cups of earth and licked your hands after eating.”

 

Extracted chapter from the Ihya ‘Ulum al-Deen of Imam Ghazali, Vol. 1

CATEGORIZATION OF THE ACTS OF THE LEGALLY-RESPONSIBLE

 OUR RELIGIOUS RESPONSIBILITIES

Allah has given us many blessings. The most important of these blessings is intelligence. We distinguish right from wrong, and good from evil thanks to our intelligence. For this reason, intelligence and thinking are among the fundamental characteristics of human beings that distinguish us from other living beings. The blessing of intelligence brings along with it responsibility. That is because God, Who
gave us these blessings, did not leave us alone and irresponsible.

He commanded the things that are beneficial and good for us and forbade the things that are harmful and bad for us. He held us accountable for some duties that enable our worldly and next-worldly happiness and He commanded us to perform those duties. Thus, these duties and deeds that we are commanded to perform or avoid are called “Religious Liabilities.”

When does one enter puberty?
The time of puberty in children occurs depending on the children’s body structure and the climate. In general, puberty takes place around age 12 to 15 for boys and age 9 to 15 for girls. After age fifteen, a boy or girl is considered mature and becomes responsible for obeying our beautiful religion’s commands and prohibitions even if the child doesn’t show the signs of puberty.

What Does Legally-responsible Mean?
The individuals who have reached the age of puberty and who are of sound mind and therefore responsible to obey our religion’s commands and prohibitions are called “legally- responsible” (mukallaf). Insane people and children who have not reached the age of puberty are not legally-responsible.

Worship2

Obligatory/ Al-Fardh: These are the acts of worship that are definitely commanded to perform by our religion. For example, performing five daily ritual prayers, fasting, and paying poor-due (Zakat) are obligatory. Whoever performs the obligatory acts gain divine rewards (thawab). Whoever does not perform them, short of a valid excuse, would be committing sin. If someone does not believe in even one of the obligatory acts or does not acknowledge that it is obligatory would abandon the religion of Islam.

Fardhs are of two kinds:

a) Obligatory on Individuals (Fardh al-Ayn):
These are the obligatory acts that each legally-responsible Muslim is tasked with fulfilling personally. For example, praying five times
a day and fasting are obligatory on individuals (fardh al-ayn).

b) Obligatory on the Community (Fardhal-Kifayah):
These obligatory acts are fulfilled even if only some Muslims do them. In this case, the responsibility is lifted from other Muslims. If no one fulfills such obligatory acts, then all Muslims are responsible. For example, when a Muslim passes away, if a group of Muslims performs the funeral prayer, the responsibility is being lifted from the entire Muslim community in that region.


Al-Wajib: These are orders that are determined through evidence that is not as definitive as the evidence for the obligatory acts. For example, performing Festival prayers (Salah al- Eid), giving alms to the poor in the month of Ramadan (Fitr), and sacrificing an animal during Eid-ul-Adha are necessary (wajib). As in the case of obligatory acts (fardhs), whoever performs the wajib acts gains divine rewards (thawab) and whoever does not becomes a sinner. However, while a person who denies a fardh abandons the religion, if someone denies a wajib, he or she does not abandon the religion.


Sunnah: These are the acts that are not among the obligatory and necessary ones, but they were performed by our Prophet and are
advised for us. Traditions (al-Sunnah) are of two groups:

a) Emphasized Tradition (Sunnah Muakkadah):
Those are the traditions (sunnahs) that our Prophet ﷺ would always perform and hardly ever missed. For example, parts of Morning (Dawn) Prayer (Salat al-Fajr), and Noon Prayer (Salat al-Zuhr), Sunset Prayer (Salat al-Maghrib), and Tarawih Prayer (Salat-al-Tarawih) are all sunnah Muakkadah. (Ritual prayers are composed of parts that are obligatory and non-obligatory.)

b) Non-continuous tradition (Sunnah al-Ghayri muakkadah):
These are the acts or worship that our Prophet ﷺ occasionally performed and sometimes did not. For example, the sunnah parts of the Afternoon Prayer (Salah al-Asr) and Night Prayer (Salah al-Isha’) are non-emphasized traditions (sunnah Ghayr mu’akkadah). One who performs the sunnah gains divine rewards (thawab),and in the hereafter, he or she would be blessed by the Prophet’s (blessings and peace be upon him) intercession. The one who abandons the sunnah would miss the opportunity to gain divine rewards (thawab).


Al-Mustahabb: Mustahabb: These are the acts that are good and nice to perform according to our religion’s general guidelines. They are
also called “nafilah/ supererogatory” or “mandub/ praiseworthy.” For example, Performing the mid-morning ritual prayer (Salat al-Duha), fasting on Mondays and Thursdays, giving nonobligatory alms to the poor (Sadaqah), and giving gifts to each other are Mustahabb. One who does these liked and appreciated acts gains divine rewards (thawab), and one who does not engage in them does not commit a sin.


Al-Mubah: These are the acts that people are free to do or not to do. When we perform an ordinary act, we do not gain any divine reward (thawab) and, if we do not do it, it does not incur any sin. For example, sitting, walking, or sleeping are all mubah acts.


Al-Makruh: These are the acts and behaviors that are not welcome and are considered bad in our religion. There are two kinds of
makruh.

a) Makruh Tahriman (Disliked, but closer to Forbidden):
These are the acts that are forbidden even though not based on evidence that is not as strong as would warrant them to be haram (forbidden). One who performs this kind of Makruh becomes a sinner. For example smoking, not performing the Ritual Festival Prayers (Salatal- Eidain), and performing the Late Afternoon Prayer (Salat al-Asr) when it is almost sunset without an important excuse – rather than performing it on time – is all considered Makruh.

b) Makruh Tanzihan (Disliked, but closer to permissible):
Those are the acts and behaviors that are not considered nice in our religion. One who engages in this kind of Makruh would not be a sinner but nevertheless commits an act that is not nice. For example, cleaning one’s nose with his right hand is considered makruh tanzihan.


Haram: Those acts that are strictly prohibited by definite evidence by our religion. For example, killing a person without a just cause, stealing, drinking intoxicating drinks, adultery, gambling, eating pork, rebelling against one’s parents, and gossiping are all
haram. The one who performs haram is considered as having disobeyed God and commits a big sin. The ones who distance themselves from haram acts gain the love of God and divine rewards. The ones who deny that such acts are haram, or who consider them halal/permissible abandon Islam.


Mufsid: Those things that cancel or annul any worship (ibadah) that has already begun. For example, talking during prayer (salah) and taking any food-like substance or drinking while fasting. The worship that has been annulled should be redone.

 

An Excerpt from “My Beautiful Religion: According to the Hanafi School”

 

Q- It is not always possible to attain such happiness in all families. It is a sign of great blessing to reach this happiness and tranquility. Yet if we hope to reach this level of happiness, what should we be careful about?

The first condition is to follow Islamic guidelines for selecting a suitable spouse. The essence of these guidelines is that believers should not select their spouses based on the temporary beauties of this world, like physical appearance and wealth. Instead, their selection must be based on spiritual qualities such as faith and morality. In this respect, the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) says:

“A woman is married for four things: her wealth, her family status, her beauty and her religion. Try to marry the one who is religious; may your hand be scented with goodness!” (Bukhari, Nikah, VI, 123; Muslim, Rada, 53)

Even though this tradition is about the qualities of an ideal wife, it is also applicable for choosing an ideal husband, because to have a righteous spouse is the second most valuable thing for every Muslim to have, after piety. A righteous husband is the unshakable pillar of the family palace and a righteous wife is the most valuable adornment of that palace. This is expressed in the following saying of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him):

“People’s rank is hidden in their religion; their dignity is hidden in their reason; and the beauty of their progeny is hidden in the goodness of their morality [protected by marriage].”

The second important thing is to be careful about is equivalence between the spouses. Equality must be assessed according to qualities such as wealth, manners and cultural levels. The steps after these two depend on maturity and willpower. Maturity develops through seeking perfection in faith and practice; willpower can be achieved through embracing the Divine Law’s orders and prohibitions.

A peaceful family, in which the commands and prohibitions of Allah are observed, is the foundation of felicity in this world and one of the greatest blessings of our Lord. Continuation of this felicity and blessing is contingent upon togetherness of the spouses in a spiritual atmosphere, which relies on mutual understanding and willing sacrifices.

In the present day, the most significant source of erosion of the traditional family is women who try to resemble men and men who try to resemble women. Allah the Almighty has bestowed different qualities upon men and women. These qualities are shaped in order to give all the ability to do their best in society. The natural qualities of the sexes, from their physical appearances to their spiritual features, are formed according to the responsibilities assigned to them by Allah the Almighty.

Men require spiritual and physical strength in order to provide for the family and to lead it. Women are not held responsible for the provision of livelihood. If they are forced to provide, it is oppression and hardship, because women are not created to earn a family’s sustenance, but rather to raise and protect its children. However if the environment and conditions are suitable, then women can work in positions that are favorable to their natures, such as being a teacher at Qur’anic schools for girls, or a gynecologist .

It is their natural abilities that make men and women different but complementary to each other. When spouses transgress the limits of these characteristics, the family’s felicity suffers.

We should also mention that male authority in the family does not give any man the right to use brute force and that female obedience should not be tantamount to slavery. If both man and woman pursue their traditional roles in accordance with the principles of Islam, there will be neither an oppressor nor an oppressed in the family.

A woman’s defiance of her husband by violating the principles of chastity and obedience and a man’s abuse of his authority for his selfish desires, can each destroy a family. A man may sometimes experience stressful circumstances during the day at work. When he does, it is not just his need but also his right to find an understanding and consoling wife at home. On the other hand, it is both the need and the right of a wife who waits for her husband at home all day long to find sympathy and warmth in him when he arrives. Each person in a family must know his or her rights and responsibilities in the presence of Allah the Almighty. The only principle that can maintain felicity and joy in a family is mutual love and respect.

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We should not forget the saying of our ancestors, “The female bird builds the nest.” Women do have a more effective role in protecting a family. That is why women’s intuition, understanding and efforts in this regard carry more significance than men’s. Allah has bestowed greater emotional wisdom and capability upon mothers than upon fathers.

İsmail Hakkı Bursevî says about the interpretation of the term “al-tara’ib” from Sura 86 of the Quran, “When a child falls into a stream, its mother jumps into the stream, no matter how dangerous it is and does everything she can to save her baby. The child’s father, on the other hand, does not act like this. If there is no hope from the baby, its father just sits on the shore and weeps.”

Of course, such heroism shows itself in mothers who have not lost their spiritual qualities. It is not seen in those heartless women who abandon their children in front of mosques or at the edges of cemeteries. They are like ruined souls who have destroyed all the good qualities of their creation.

A mother is a truly a mother not because of her physical qualities, but because of her spiritual qualities. If a woman gives up these spiritual qualities, then she is no longer a mother and a monument of mercy. Instead she becomes a hunter – and she destroys many young souls. Therefore women should value and protect the blessing of motherhood as more than simple animal reproduction. For other creatures there will be no questioning about their offspring in the Hereafter. But for humans, there will be.

Our children will count either for us or against us in the on the Day of Reckoning. They should be raised carefully, for they are means of entering Paradise. A good religious education, good manners, morality and consciousness of divine service come at the head of the things which should be taught to children.