October 2007


1. Inimitable

It dares you to disprove it. How? It says that humans cannot write a book like this even if they pooled all their resources together and got help also from the spirits. The Qur’an said this fourteen hundred years ago and yet no one has been able to disprove it. Billions of books have been written-but not another one like the Qur’an.

2. Incorruptible

It is the only religious sacred writing that has been in circulation for such a long time and yet remains as pure as it was in the beginning. The Qur’an was kept intact. Nothing was added to it; nothing was changed in it; and nothing was taken away from it ever since its revelation was completed 1400 years ago.

3. Unsurpassable

The Qur’an is God’s final revelation to humankind. God revealed the Torah to Moses, the Psalms to David, the Gospel to Jesus, and finally the Qur’an to Muhammad. Peace be upon Moses, David, Jesus and Muhammad. No other book will come from God to surpass His final revelation.

4. Indisputable

The Qur’an withstands the test of time and scrutiny. No one can dispute the truth of this book. It speaks about past history and turns out right. It speaks about the future in prophecies and it turns out right. It mentions details of physical phenomena which were not known to people at the time; yet later scientific discoveries prove that the Qur’an was right all along. Every other book needs to be revised to accord with modern knowledge. The Qur’an alone is never contradicted by a newly discovered scientific fact.

5. Your Roadmap for Life and Afterlife

The Qur’an is the best guidebook on how to structure your life. No other book presents such a comprehensive system involving all aspects of human life and endeavor. The Qur’an also points out the way to secure everlasting happiness in the afterlife. It is your roadmap showing how to get to Paradise.

6. God’s Gift of Guidance

God has not left you alone. You were made for a reason. God tells you why he made you, what he demands from you and what he has in store for you. If you operate a machine contrary to it’s manufacturer’s specification you will ruin that machine. What about you? Do you have an owner’s manual for yourself? The Qur’an is from your Maker. It is a gift for you to make sure you function for success, lest you fail to function.

It is a healing from God. It satisfies the soul, and cleans the heart. It removes doubts and brings peace.

7. Your Calling Card to Communicate with your Lord

Humans are social creatures. We love to communicate with other intelligent life. The Qur’an tells us how to communicate with the source of all intelligence and the source of all life-the One God. The Qur’an tells us who God is, by what name we should address Him, and the way in which to communicate with Him.

Are these not seven sufficient reasons for reading the Qur’an?

Source: Hujra

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In hadith literature people forget an important aspect the aspect that determines the authenticity of a narration, its wording and its validity, called the Isnaad or Sanad (singular) all teachers who teach hadith, or any book (like Hidayah in fiqh, books on tasawwuf, tafseer etc) will have a Sanad (a chain of narration) that goes all the way back to the person who wrote the book and then in many cases to the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) . Insha’Allah the article below taken from daruliftaa.com will shed more light on the matter.

Isnad (chain of transmission)

Allah Almighty has honoured the Ummah of the best of creation, our master Muhammad (Allah bless him & give him peace) with many special characteristics that were not given to any other nation before us.

From among these favours is the unrivalled and unique feature of Isnad in relating the various sciences of Islamic knowledge. Isnad was regarded by the early Muslims (salaf) as the first and primary condition in relating any aspect of Shariah even if it was merely relating one word.

With this, Allah Most High fulfilled his promise of preserving the Deen which includes the book of Allah, Sunnah of the beloved of Allah and the various Islamic sciences that are indispensable in understanding the former two.

Allah Most High says:

“We have without doubt, sent down the Message; and we will assuredly guard it.” (Surah al-Hijr, V.9)

The “message” here refers to the book of Allah and also the Sunnah of his blessed Messenger (Allah bless him & give him peace), for whatever the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace) says is from Allah Almighty, as Allah Most High says:

“Nor does he (the Messenger of Allah) say (aught) of (his own) desire. It is no less than revelation (wahi) sent down to him.” (al-Najm, V. 3-4)

The Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace) explained both verbally and practically the contents of the book of Allah. The Qur’an is quite ambiguous and limited in stating the laws of Shariah, and the Messenger of Allah’s (Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace) duty was to explain these injunctions.

Allah Most High says to his Messenger (Allah bless him & give him peace):

“And We have sent down unto you the Message (Qur’an); that you may explain clearly to men what is sent for them.” (al-Nahl, V. 44)

So the promise of preserving the Deen is not restricted to the Qur’an, rather it encompasses the Sunnah and also the Companion’s (Allah be pleased with them all) understanding of the Sunnah and the understanding of those who took from them.

Isnad is a unique feature of the Messenger of Allah’s (Allah bless him & give him peace) Ummah. No other nation, religion or community can claim or boast to have such rigorous analysis of the various aspects of their faith.

Early Muslim scholars examined and analysed each and every statement that came to them, whether it was the statement of the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace), his companions (Allah be pleased with them all) or anyone else. They studied the life and character of those who were part of the transmitting chain (isnad) in the strictest way possible.

Thus, the Ummah witnessed an amazing introduction of the “science of studying the reporters of Hadith” (rijal al-Hadith) which was unprecedented and is unrivalled till today. The recording of the names, dates of birth, dates of demise, qualities and characteristics of thousands and thousands of people is something that only Muslims possess.

Books such as, Tahzib al-Kamal by al-Mizzi, Tahzib al-Tahzib by Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani, Mizan al-I’tidal by Dhahabi and Lisan al-Mizan by Ibn Hajar are just some examples of this amazing phenomenon. There are also books that are dedicated to preserving the biographies of the Sahaba, such as Tabqat of Ibn Sa’d, al-Isti’ab by Ibn Abd al-Barr, Usd al-Ghaba by Ibn al-Athir and al-Isaba by Ibn Hajar, in which the biographies of approximately ten thousand companions (Allah be pleased with them all) have been covered.

Imam Abd Allah ibn al-Mubarak (Allah be pleased with him) said:

“Isnad is part of religion (deen), and if it was not for Isnad, one would have said whatever one desired. When it is said (to the one who speaks without an Isnad): “Who informed you? He remains silent and bewildered.” (See: Introduction to Sahih Muslim, 1/87, al-Jami’ li akhlaq al-rawi wa adab al-sami’ and others)

He (Abd Allah ibn al-Mubarak) also stated:

“The one who seeks matters of his deen without an Isnad is similar to the one who climbs to the roof without a ladder.”

Sufyan al-Thawri (Allah have mercy on him) said:
“Isnad is the weapon of a believer. When one does not possess a weapon, then with what will he combat?.”

Sayyiduna Imam Shafi’i (Allah have mercy on him) says:

“The example of the one who seeks Hadith without an Isnad is of a person who gathers wood in the night. He carries a bundle of sticks not knowing that there is a snake in it.” (m, meaning, he gathers and collects all types of narrations, the genuine and spurious, ).

Baqiyya ibn al-Walid (Allah have mercy on him) once related to Hammad ibn Zaid (Allah have mercy on him) certain narrations that were void of Isnad. So Hammad said: “If only they had wings.”

Imam Ibn Taymiyya (Allah have mercy on him) states:

“Isnad is a unique feature of this Ummah and Islam. Then from among the Muslims, it is a speciality of the Ahl al-Sunnah wa al-Jama’ah.”

(The above statements have been recorded by Shaykh Abd al-Fattah Abu Ghudda (Allah have mercy on him) in his excellent work, al-Isnad min al-Din P. 18-20)

These and many other similar statements of the predecessors imply that the early Muslims held Isnad to be indispensable in order to acquire Knowledge. So much so, that in order to relate even one word in their books, they would mention a whole chain of transmission that covered three or four lines.

Isnad was not only mentioned in order to narrate Prophetic traditions (hadith), rather, it was related for every form of knowledge, such as the exegesis (tafsir) of the Qur’an, stories of the pious and worshippers, incidents of history, etc.

After the Prophetic traditions were gathered in the great compilations, such as Sahih al-Bukhari, Sahih Muslim and others, and other compilations in various other Islamic sciences, it was not deemed necessary to relate every statement with a chain of transmission going back to its original authority. Rather, it was sufficient to have an Isnad or Sanad going back to the author. The Isnad of the author going back to the original authority would be mentioned in his book.

Till this very day, we have scholars from around the globe relating Prophetic traditions and other branches of Islamic knowledge with a chain that goes all the way back to the authors of the respective books.

The six major books of Hadith are generally taught with an Isnad that goes back to their authors, and from them to the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace). Many scholars are seen to travel and make distant journeys in order to acquire Ijazah and a higher form of Isnad.

In terms of Isnad with regards to prophetic traditions (hadith), the scholars of the Indian subcontinent are (perhaps) at the forefront. The science of Hadith is given special attention there and almost every student that studies in the various Islamic institutions (Dar al-Ulooms) is blessed with an Isnad in each of the major books of Hadith. Even major Arab scholars are seen to travel to Indo/Pak in order to acquire Ijazah and Isnad from the great Hadith masters.

In terms of other branches of knowledge, such as the science of Tajweed, Fiqh, etc, we see the Arab scholars at the forefront in relating and teaching the various books with Isnad. Major scholars in Syria and elsewhere have a chain in the recitation and memorization of the Qur’an that goes back to the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace) via the angel Jibril to Allah Almighty Himself.

The major books in Hanafi Fiqh (and other Madhhabs) are taught with a Isnad/Sanad going back to their authors and to Sayyiduna Imam Abu Hanifa (Allah be pleased with him) himself. Books in other sciences are also taught and related in a similar manner.

In conclusion, Isnad (or Sanad) is a unique feature with which our Ummah has been blessed. It has always been regarded to be indispensable in teaching and seeking knowledge. Scholars mention, that even today, one should acquire knowledge from a scholar who has an Isnad or at least a teacher who he studied with. Having a complete chain of transmission is not a pre-requisite for teaching. However, what is necessary, is that the one from whom one takes his/her knowledge, is amongst those who studied by other shuyukh. This is discussed further in the following section.

Click here to listen to the chain of narration of Shaykh Abu Yusuf Riyad ul Haq

As Salaamu Alaikum,

I pray Allah has blessed your Ramadhan and that He blesses your Eid and the coming months Ameen

Allahu Akbar Allahu Akbar La Ilaha Ila Allah Wa Allahu Akbar Allahu Akbar Wa Lillahi Alhamd

EID MUBARAK!

Duas requested

Was Salaam

The Night Preceding ‘Eid-ul-Fitr’

It had been the practice of the Prophet, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam, that he would not sleep in the night preceding the day of Eid-ul-fitr. This night has been named in a Hadith as the Night of Reward (Lailatul Jaiza). Almighty bestows his rewards on those who have spent the month of Ramadan abiding by the dictates of Shari’ah, and all their prayers in this night are accepted. Therefore, it is desirable to perform nafl prayers in this night. The Prophet, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam, is reported to have said:

Whoever stands up (in worship) in the nights preceding the two Eids expecting rewards from his Lord, his heart will not die when the other hearts will die. (Ibn Majah)

To benefit from this opportunity, one should perform as much worship in this night as he can, and should pray for all his needs and desires.

The Sunnats of Eid – ul – Fitr

  • To awaken earlier than usual
  • To brush the teeth (miswaak)
  • To have a bath (ghusl)
  • To be well dressed in an Islamic manner
  • To dress in one’s best clothes, not necessarily new
  • To use itr
  • To perform Eid Salah at the Eidgah
  • To eat odd number of dates
  • To go for Salah early
  • To walk to the place of Eid Salah if within walking distance
  • To read the Takbeeraat of Eid silently- Allahu Akbar Allahu Akbar La Ilaha Ila Allah Wa Allahu Akbar Allahu Akbar Wa Lillahi Alhamd
  • To use different routes to and from the pace of Eid Salah
  • To greet one another on Eid day with the words “Eid Mubaruk”

Virtues of Ramadhaan -Laylatul Qadr
by Sheikhul Hadith Maulana Muhammad Zakariyya

 

taken from Jamiat Ulama (KZN)

LAYLATUL QADR – Night of power
Amongst the nights of Ramadhaan, there is one called ‘Laylatul Qadr’,a night that is noted for its greatest blessings. The Noble Qur’an describes it as being greater in blessedness and spiritual virtue than a thousand months, which in turn means that it is more valuable than eighty three years and four months. Fortunate indeed is that person who attains the full blessings of this night by spending it in the worship of Allah, because he has then attained the reward of ‘Ibaadah’ (worship) for eighty three years,four months and even more. Indeed (the granting of) this night for the faithful Muslims is a great favour.

THE ORIGIN
Regarding this night in a Hadith reported by Anas (RA) in Durre Manthur, Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) is reported to have said: “Laylatul Qadr was granted to this Ummah (of mine) andnot to any other ‘Ummah’ before this” As regards the reason for the granting of ‘Laylatul Qadr’, various views are held.According to some Ahaadith, one reason is given thus: Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) used to ponder over the longer lives of peoples of the past ages and when comparing them with, the much shorter lives of his ‘Ummah’, he became greatly saddened, because if his ‘Ummah’ wished to compete with the people before them, then because of their shorter lives, it would be impossible for them to either emulate or surpass the previous ‘Ummahs’ in the doing of righteous deeds. Therefore, Allah in His Infinite Mercy granted them this night of great blessings. This means that, if any fortunate person of this ‘Ummah’ during his life-time spends ten such nights in the worship of his Maker, he would have gained the reward of ‘Ibaadah’ (worship) for eight hundred and thirty three years and even more. Another report states that Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) once related to the ‘Sahaaba’ the story of a very righteous man from among the Banu Israaeel, who spent one thousand months in ‘Jihaad’. On hearing this, the Sahaaba enviously felt that they could not attain the same reward, whereupon Allah granted them this Night (of Power). Still another report states that it so happened that our Nabi (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) once mentioned the names ofthe four most pious people from among the Banu Israaeel, each of whom spent eighty years in Allah’s sincere service, worshipping Him and not transgressing in the least. They were Nabi Ayyub, Zakariyya, Ezkeel and Yu’sha (Alayhimus salaam). The ‘Sahaaba’ heard this, wondering how to emulate their achievements. Then Jibraaeel (Alayhis salaam) appeared and recited ‘Surah Qadr’, wherein the blessings of this particular night were revealed.

There are reports too, explaining the origin of the Night of Power. But no matter which of these we accept, the important fact remains that Allah has granted us this night, as a great favour, and how fortunate are those divines who have never missed worship in this night. As to which particular night it is, here again approximately fifty different views are reported. It is not easy for me to enumerate them all, but the most generally accepted versions, shall follow in the ensuing pages of this chapter. Because the Qur’an Majeed itself mentions the night, we shall commence with a short commentary of Surah Qadr.

‘We have indeed revealed this (message) in the Night of Power.’
Reference here is made to the fact that,on this specific night, the Qur’an was sent down from the ‘Lawhul Mahfoodh’ (the preserved Tablet) to the heavens (above the earth). The mere factthat the Qur’an was revealed on this night would have been sufficient toensure its greatness. But apart from this fact, it is also noted for many other things. In the very next verse, by way of increasing out interest in the matter under discussion, a question is asked:

‘And what will explain to you what the Night of Power is?’
In other words, the question asked here is: Have you any knowledge as to the greatness and importance of this night? Have you any knowledge as to the great favours and bounties that go with it? The next verse proceeds to explain its greatness.

‘The night of Power is better that a thousand months’
The true meaning here is that the reward forspending this night in worship (Ibaadah) is betterand more than that for having spent one thousand months in worship (Ibaadah); but as to how much more rewarding it is,we are not told here.

‘Therein come down the Angels and the Spirit, by Allah’s permission on every errand’
A fine explanation is given for this verse by Imaam Raazi. Commenting on this verse, he explains that when man first appeared on earth, the ‘Malaaikah’looked upon him with concern. They even ventured to ask Allah, ‘Will You place on this earth, one who shall be riotous therein and shed blood?’

Similarly, when his parents noted his original formasa mere drop of sperm, they too looked upon it with dislike, so much so, that they considered it as something which polluted the clothes and had to be washed away. But later, when Allah made that same sperm into a fine form of a child, they began to love and cherish him. So far have things now progressed that, when on this Night of Power we find that same man worshipping Allah and adoring Him, then those very Angels (Malaaikah) descend towards him, obviously repentant for the thoughts they had once harboured against him. In this verse, where in is mentioned (Wa-rrooh) ‘and the Spirit…’, the reference is to Jibraaeel (Alayhis salaam) who descends to the Earth during this night. Commentators of the Qur’an have given various meanings of this word. Let us look at some of them:

The vast majority of commentators are agreed that Jibraaeel (Alayhis salaam) is meant here and, according to Imaam Razi, this is the most correct meaning. Allah first makes mention of the ‘Malaaikah’ and then, because of Jibraaeel (Alayhis salaam)’s special status among them, a separate mention is made of him.

Some commentators hold the view that ‘Spirit’ here means one specific Angel of such extra-ordinary and gigantic proportions that before him the Heavens and the Earth appear as small as a morsel.

Another group of commentators opine that ‘Spirit’ here means one group of ‘Malaaikah’ who never ordinarily appear and only on this night are they seen by other ‘Malaaikah’

Some commentators believe that ‘Spirit’ here designates one specific creation of Allah, who partake of food and drink, and yet neither men nor angels.

There is also a view that ‘Spirit’ here refers to the Prophet Jesus (Alayhis salaam), who onthis night comes down to look at the righteous deeds of the ‘Ummah’

The last interpretation we wish to mention here is that ‘Spirit’ means Allah’s special ‘Mercy’ which comes in the wake of the angels descent.

There are other interpretations also, but as already stated, the first opinion given above is the best known. In this connection, Imaam Bayhaqi (RA) relates a Hadith by Anas wherein Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) is reported to have said: ‘On ‘Laylatul Qadr’ Jibraaeel (Alayhis salaam) comes down with a group of angels and prays for mercy for every one whom they find busy in worship (Ibaadah).’

‘By Allah’s permission, descend on the Earth for blessed errands…’
The author of Mazaaire Haqq writes that on this night, ages ago, the ‘Malaaikah’ were created, long before the creation of Aadam (Alayhis salaam) was begun in the shape of a nucleous; on this same night Paradise was planted with tree and numerous Ahaadith bear witness to the fact that on this night prayers are accepted. Similarly, we read in the book, Durre Manthoor, that according to a Hadith it was on this night that the Prophet Jesus (Alayhis salaam) was lifted up bodily into the Heavens, and also it was on this night that the repentence (Tawbah) of Banu Israaeel was accepted.

‘Peace reigns until the break of dawn’
Indeed this night is the very embodiment of peace; the ‘Malaaikah’ offer salutations to the faithful believers adoring their Lord. As one group ascends, another group descends (with the same greetings), as indicated in some narrations. Another interpretation is that it is that it is a night of complete safety from evil and mischief. These blessings last all night until the break of dawn, and are not limited to anyone part of the night. And now, having noted a few virtues of this night as explained in the Words of Allah, we now turn to the Hadith where we read more about the virtues of the night.