Do We Need to Follow Classes Live?

We want to follow your classes and other programmes live but the time difference makes it difficult. What should we do?

Answered by Sayyidi Habib Umar bin Hafiz (may Allah protect him and benefit us by him)

The desire to follow these programmes is an expression of your heart being connected and this is not governed by time. It is not necessary that you follow these programmes live. You can listen to a recording whenever you have time.

What are the Principles for Interacting with the Jinn?

Answered by Sayyidi Habib Umar bin Hafiz (may Allah protect him and benefit us by him)

Interacting with jinn is similar to interacting with humans. There are pious jinn and disobedient jinn just like there are pious humans and disobedient humans. Our interactions with everyone are governed by the Sacred Law and our interactions with the pious among them are on the principle of working together to attain piety and righteousness. As seekers, we should not be concerned with connections to the jinn. If any good is to come of such connections, Allah will facilitate them without us seeking them.

Raising Children Leaves No Time for Seeking Knowledge

Answered by Sayyidi Habib Umar bin Hafiz (may Allah protect him and benefit us by him)

All my time is spent raising my children and I feel I am missing out on worship and seeking knowledge. What advice can you give me?

For you to raise your children in the best way is an act of worship and is part of acting according to your knowledge. Try to follow a class when you have a bit of spare time. A pious woman from the Amudi tribe (in Hadramawt) wrote out the whole of Imam al-Subki’s three volume fatwa collection. At the end she wrote: ‘Please excuse any mistakes I may have made because I wrote this while I was breastfeeding’. The truthful person continues doing good works however small regardless of the situation.

Photo credit: mahabbah.foundation

The Origins of Dreams

Answered by Sayyidi Habib Umar bin Hafiz (may Allah protect him and benefit us by him)

How can you tell the origin of a dream?

Scholars like Imam al-Ghazali teach us principles for identifying the origin of the passing thoughts (khawatir) that come to the heart. Those thoughts may be divine (directly from Allah), angelic, satanic (from the whisperings of the Devil) or from the lower self (nafs). The same principles may be applied to dreams. So if a dream is followed by a feeling of tranquillity and presence of heart its origin is divine or angelic. If it is followed by a feeling of unsettledness then it is from the lower self or the Devil. If you dream about something you have thought a lot about in the past then this is from the lower self. When you remember Allah afterwards, the effects of dreams that come from the Devil disappear.

If the dream contains encouragement to disobey Allah, become lazy in acts of obedience or hold a bad opinion about someone or harm them then it is from the Devil. Generally speaking, any dream which contains going against the Shariah or against good etiquette (adab) is from the Devil. Any dream which encourages you to do good, have a good opinion of others and increases you in humility is from Allah.

Allah says: Satan threatens you with the prospect of poverty and commands you to do foul deeds; Allah promises you His forgiveness and His abundance: Allah is limitless and all knowing  (al-Baqarah, 2:268).

How Does a Seeker of Knowledge Attain Openings?

Answered by Sayyidi Habib Umar bin Hafiz (may Allah protect him and benefit us by him)

How does a seeker of knowledge attain openings?

Seekers must abide by the etiquettes of seeking knowledge. They must spend time reviewing what they have studied with fellow students and write down important points which they learn.

They should call upon Allah by His names the Opener, the All-Knowing 100 times a day:

يا فَتَّاحُ يا عَلِيمُ

Ya Fattāḥ ya `Alīm

They should also repeat Ayat al-Kursi followed by this prayer upon the Prophet ﷺ :

اَللَّهُمَّ صَلِّ وَ سَلِّمْ عَلى سَيِّدِنا مُحَمَّدٍ وَ عَلي آلِ سَيِّدِنا مُحَمَّدٍ في كُلِّ لَمْحَةٍ وَ نَفَسٍ بِعَدَدِ كُلِّ  مَعْلومٍ لَكَ

Allahumma salli wa sallim ‘ala sayyidina Muhammad wa ‘ala ali sayyidina Muhammad fi kulli lamhatin wa nafasin bi `adadi kulli ma`lumin lak

O Allah, bestow prayers and peace on our master Muhammad and his Family in every instant and every breath equal to the amount of everything known to You

Is Practising Islam Easy or Difficult?

 

Answered by Sayyidi Habib Umar bin Hafiz (may Allah protect him and benefit us by him)

Islam is supposed to be easy but I am finding it hard to practise. How can we reconcile between this ease and hardship?

All good things are not beyond a person’s capacity to attain but they are only attained through effort. Even in worldly affairs, effort is required to attain one’s goals. If we look at the religion from the perspective that it does not give us obligations which we are unable to fulfil, we find ease in it. In addition to this, we find that whenever we act upon the injunctions of the religion we receive great openings, gentleness and assistance from Allah. When the spirit begins to find pleasure in acts of worship and the person begins to appreciate the inner beauty of the religion, all physical hardship becomes easy to bear. In fact, the hardship which the lower self experiences – which has been likened to holding on to a hot coal – is transformed into pleasure which the spirit experiences. When Sayyiduna Bilal was asked how he bore the pain of being tortured in Makkah, he said that he caused the sweetness of faith which he was tasting to overcome the pain of torture.

The religion is easy to practise but the soul goes through difficulty in establishing it in the best way. There is no contradiction in this. What makes it seem more difficult is that the majority of people around us do not practise it. The Prophet ﷺ said: “This religion began as something strange and it will return once again as something strange, so good tidings to the strangers who bring life to the affairs of my Sunnah which people had caused to die.”

What is the Ruling on Organ Donation?

habib-umar-bin-hafiz-surabaya-2014

Answered by Sayyidi Habib Umar bin Hafiz (may Allah protect him and benefit us by him)

What is the ruling on organ donation?

It is impermissible to take a dead person’s organs. Some scholars allow someone to donate an organ such as a kidney if they can do without it, especially if they are donating it to someone close to them such as their father or mother and doing so would save their life. It would not be permissible to donate your eye or your hand for example because you do not in fact own your own organs but rather they belong to Allah. It is permissible to donate blood because it replaces itself and donating it does not detract from a person’s makeup.

Is it Permissible for a Male Teacher to Teach a Woman the Qur’an?

Answered by Sayyidi Habib Umar bin Hafiz (may Allah protect him and benefit us by him)

Is it permissible for a male teacher to teach a woman the Qur’an?

This is permissible if the male teacher teaches from behind a veil and as long as the two are not alone together. It has been narrated that: “A man must never be alone with a woman even if he is teaching her the Qur’an and even if she is Maryam bint `Imran.” The Companions would take knowledge from the wives of the Prophet, the Mothers of the Believers from behind a veil.