Victories and Openings from the Isra and Mi`raj

Habib Ali al-Jifri (may Allah protect him and benefit us by him) tells us how victories and openings come through learning about the Isra and Mi`raj. Extracts from a talk delivered at Majelis Rasulullah in Jakarta, Indonesia on the night of the Isra and Mi`raj, Rajab 1439.

The key to attaining divine gifts is showing mercy. When the Prophet ﷺ showed mercy to the people of Ta’if, even though he could have asked for their destruction, Allah bestowed upon him the greatest of gifts on the night of the Mi`raj. Continue reading Victories and Openings from the Isra and Mi`raj

Commemorating Badr

On the 17th Ramadan we commemorate the Battle of Badr, which took place on that day in the second year of the Hijrah. It is one of the most important events in the history of the Ummah, and Allah describes it as the Day of Discrimination. Sayyidi Habib Umar bin Hafiz (may Allah protect him and benefit us by him) places great emphasis on commemorating it and marks the event by completing the Qur’an in Tarawih on the eve of the 17th, after which there are big celebrations in Dar al-Mustafa attended by thousands. The rest of the night is spent in prayer, remembrance and supplication, since prayers are answered when the Qur’an is completed.

Habib Umar reflects upon some of the lessons we can learn from Badr. Extracts from a Friday khutbah, Masjid al-Rawdah, Tarim 12th Ramadan 1432 / 12th August 2011.  Continue reading Commemorating Badr

Commemorating the Life of Sayyidatuna Fatimah al-Zahra

On 20th Jumada al-Akhirah we commemorate the life of Sayyidatuna Fatimah (peace be upon her), the day on which she was born.

Here are some episodes on her life, presented by Habib Muhammad bin Abd al-Rahman al-Saqqaf (may Allah protect him) as part of the series, “The Perfected Women.” He discusses the best women to have ever lived in this world, and shows how Muslim women of today can emulate them.

 

 

Teaching People About the Hijrah

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

What are the most important themes to focus on when teaching people about the Hijrah?

We should teach people about the truthfulness and patience of the Prophet ﷺ in giving victory to Allah’s cause and leaving one place for another. We should also talk about how he interacted with the things that Allah has decreed to take place in this life, such as people harming us and being given power over us.

We should then highlight the fact that if we have taqwa, the schemes of those who oppose the truth will eventually come to nothing. The disbelievers who possessed power plotted to either imprison, expel or kill the Prophet ﷺ but their plot failed. Likewise they came to the cave but did not find him ﷺ .

 

What can we learn from the two hijrahs to Abyssinia?

We learn the need to choose places in which we are able to establish the religion and practise it in safety and freedom.

Reflecting Upon the Hijrah

Sayyidi Habib Umar bin Hafiz (may Allah protect him and benefit us by him) derives lessons to be learned from the Hijrah of Allah’s Messenger ﷺ . Extracts from a Friday khutbah.

Should you not reflect on why the Prophet ﷺ made the Hijrah? Why he bore those hardships? Why he was forced to migrate? He looked at the city of Makkah upon leaving it and said: “Allah knows that you are the most beloved of cities to me. Had not your people driven me out, I would not have left.” How can you live as a believer in him without realising what drove him to bear these hardships?

The most noble of creation in the sight of the Creator is our Master Muhammad. Allah was capable of making the life of the Master of His creation a life of ease and tranquillity. If Allah wished, the Prophet would not have suffered, he would not have had a camel’s entrails thrown on his back, he would not have been pelted with stones, he would not have been driven out of his own city, he would not have tied a stone to his stomach out of hunger and he would not have fought in battle. But Allah chose all of these things for our Prophet.

Tell me, where are you going in this life and what are your thoughts focused upon? What is the level of your understanding of Allah’s religion? Have you understood the wisdom behind your creation? If the purpose of man’s creation was to relax and experience comfort, then the most worthy of creation of experiencing that was the Prophet, the possessor of the highest rank in Allah’s sight. If you realise this, how can you then find comfort in base things? How can you be distracted by things with which the enemies of Allah distract you such that you possess no concern for the Ummah and no desire to benefit it, no desire to make sacrifices and no reliance upon Allah, no trust in Him and no certainty? Is this the life of someone who believes in and follows the Chosen One? Was he the only one who made these sacrifices, or did all those who believed in him from that first generation do the same? Allah Himself commends them in the Qur’an. They were people of steadfastness and sacrifice, strong in their reliance upon the All-Powerful, people of complete trust in His promises. They had complete faith in that which had been revealed to the Prophet. Do we find these attributes in ourselves? Do not leave this Jumu`ah without resolving to expend your efforts to emulate the foremost, the first of the Emigrants and the Helpers. You will then be one of those who follows them with excellence and you will receive what Allah has promised: As for the foremost, the first of the Emigrants and the Helpers, and those who follow them with excellence this includes anyone who follows them in excellence up to this day and up until the Day of Judgement Allah is pleased with them and they, too, are pleased with Him. He has prepared for them gardens under which rivers flow, in which they will abide forever. That is the supreme triumph.1

This is how your Lord addresses you. How can you then allow your lower self or the Devil to make you live in heedlessness? How can you allow year after year to pass without having any awareness, any desire to draw closer to the Most High? Do you not want to be among those mentioned in the verse? Even before the Hijrah, some of the first Muslims had been martyred, such as Sumayyah, the first martyr in Islam; some had been tortured, like Bilal; some had migrated to Abyssinia; some had been enclosed in the valley of Abu Talib for three years until they were forced to eat the leaves of trees. All of them suffered and made sacrifices. On the night of the Hijrah, Sayyiduna `Ali bin Abu Talib sacrificed himself by sleeping on the Prophet’s bed. Sayyiduna Abu Bakr was with the Prophet, sacrificing himself and his wealth. He was with him in the Cave of Thawr, not for an hour or two, but for three nights. Every night you sleep in a house on a bed. Can you not imagine how the Beloved of Allah spent his nights in that cave?

Whose body was it that lay on the rocks of the cave patiently seeking Allah’s reward? It was the body of the one who was taken above the seven heavens, beyond the Lote Tree of the Utmost Boundary. When will you understand the wisdom behind your creation? When will you realise what your belief in Muhammad dictates? If you entered a cave with a stone floor with creatures living in it and sat there for an hour or two you would know the degree of the Prophet’s striving and steadfastness. The forces which call us to evil have distracted us so that we do not reflect on these realities. A believer may live his whole life and not reflect once upon these things. He rushes to attain comfort in his life, as if He has not received any directions from Allah.

The Ansar in Madinah expressed their love for those that made the Hijrah and made sacrifices to accommodate them. None of them asked: “Why have they taken our land, our homes and our wealth?” On the contrary: They love those who have sought refuge with them; they entertain no desire in their hearts for what the latter are given, but rather prefer them over themselves, even though poverty became their lot.2 They were worthy of being praised by Allah in His Book. There are people who are deluded by the praise of the media and are prepared to make sacrifices to gain some fame. They are not interested in aiding the cause of Allah and His Messenger ﷺ and they have no realisation of what their mission is in this life. Say to them that a time will come when not a single letter will remain of the words written in those newspapers. The people who wrote those words will no longer remain, nor will those who were written about. However, the words of Allah which contain praise for those people and those who follow them in excellence will remain. Should our ambitions not be higher? Should we not seek to be mentioned in the Book of the Lord of the Mighty Throne? He praises you with those words and that praise remains until the Day of Judgement and beyond that into the Abode of Ennoblement. Our enemies have distracted us such that we have forgotten the wisdom behind our creation, but in reading and reflecting upon the Prophetic Biography in general, and the story of the Hijrah in particular, we come to realise this wisdom. We also come to know that we have a duty to make sacrifices and have complete trust and reliance in Allah.

Some Muslims believe it is impossible to convey the message of Islam to the world in this time and that power is in the hands of the disbelievers. We say to them that the events of the Hijrah are enough proof of the falsehood of this belief. Is not Allah enough for His slave?3 Look at the state of the Chosen One when he was in the cave with Abu Bakr al-Siddiq and the disbelievers were at the mouth of the cave.

Abu Bakr said: O Messenger of Allah, were one of them to look down at his feet he would see us.”

The Messenger of Allah replied: What do you think of the state of two people and Allah is their third? Do not despair, for truly Allah is with us.”

We say to those in doubt, even if our state resembles the state of the Prophet ﷺ in the cave: “What do you think of the state of a group who still possess the light of faith? Truly Allah is with them.” Allah will cause tranquillity to descend upon them: then Allah sent down His peace upon His Messenger4 and He will assist them with troops that cannot be seen, neither with the eye, nor with the help of any form of modern technology. Allah will lower the word of the disbelievers while the Word of Allah is transcendent.5 Have no doubt in this.

1 Al-Tawbah, 9:100

2 Al-Hashr, 59:9

3 Al-Ahzab, 39:36

4 Al-Tawbah, 9:40

5 Al-Tawbah, 9:40

 

Indeed with Hardship Comes Ease

At the most difficult of times and in the most testing of circumstances, while the Muslims were being besieged by the Confederates (al-Ahzab), the Prophet ﷺ gave his Companions the good news that Syria and Yemen would be opened to Islam.

Allah’s saying: “Indeed with hardship comes ease” was thus manifested in his noble state.

Similarly, the believer finds deep certainty within himself at times of crisis, and his inner state proclaims:

‘If tribulations increase in severity, they will then depart and the coming of dawn is close.’

—Habib Ali al-Jifri (may Allah preserve him and benefit us by him)

 

The Badr Khutbah

“O people of faith, most of the days and nights of the month of Ramadan, the month of mercy and forgiveness, of salvation from the Fire, have passed by in succession.

They have passed by and each of you is in a different state; a different degree of progress and readiness. Now the eve of the Day of Discrimination has approached, the day on which the two forces met. It is an event which brings good tidings to everyone who is truthful and honours the covenant of his Lord and is a reminder and a warning to everyone who is heedless and fails to honour that covenant.

O believer, scrutinise your aims and objectives, your beliefs and intentions, your character traits and qualities. Ask yourself to which of the two groups you are closest, and to which of them of you belong.”

The Badr Khutba is a sermon composed by Sayyidi Habib Umar bin Hafiz (may Allah preserve him and benefit us by him) and is recited on the night of Badr.

The Badr Khutbah has been published along with the poem, Jaliyat al-Kadr, by Manaqib Productions.

For more on the merits of the blessed day, please see:

 

 

 

 

Reflections on the Isra’ and Mi`raj

Sayyidi Habib `Umar bin Hafiz (may Allah protect him and benefit us by him) reflects upon the Isra’ (Night Journey) and Mi`raj (Ascension). A summary of several lectures on the topic.

We are approaching 27th Rajab, the night on which the Islamic world traditionally celebrates the Isra’ (Night Journey) and Mi`raj (Ascension) of our Prophet, the Chosen One ﷺ. The Isra’ and Mi`raj was a great sign and an immense miracle which Allah gave to the Master of the people of the heavens and the earth, to demonstrate his superiority over mankind, jinn-kind, angels and the whole of creation. Continue reading Reflections on the Isra’ and Mi`raj

Sayyiduna Ja`far: A Tale of Love and Sacrifice

jaafar at tayyar

 

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

When Sayyiduna Ja`far’s right hand was cut off, he seized the standard with his left hand until that too was cut off. He then clasped the standard with both arms until he was mortally wounded. His companions took the standard from him and took him to the side. They found that he had been struck eighty times (by swords, spears and arrows) but all these wounds were on the front part of his body, not on his back or his side. This was because he remained firm and did not for a moment turn his back to the enemy. He was offered water but he refused to drink it, saying that he was fasting.

“You are fasting on an extremely hot day while being in the midst of this battle?” they asked.

“I desire to break my fast in Paradise,” Ja`far said.

They took the water away from him and at sunset he duly broke his fast in Paradise, as the Messenger of Allahﷺ testified.

On the same day the Prophet was in al-Madina. He raised his head and said: “Wa alayka al-salam wa rahmatullah wa barakatuh” and he began to speak. A group of his Companions were sitting around him observing what was happening with humility and etiquette.

When he had finished speaking, they asked him:

“Who were you speaking to, O Messenger of Allah?”

“That was Ja`far bin Abi Talib in front of me with a group of angels. Allah replaced his arms with two wings with which he can fly wherever he wishes in Paradise.”

He was thus knows as ‘al-Tayyar’ or ‘the Flyer’ long before aeroplanes were invented. He did not merely fly in the sky but in Paradise. He came from Mu’tah in Jordan to al-Madinah. What need was there for him to come to al-Madinah if he was already one of the people of Paradise? What was the purpose of him coming to al-Madinah? The purpose was to visit one person who was more beloved to him than Paradise. His name is Muhammad, your Prophet ﷺ. Had it not been for this love there would have been no need for him to go to al-Madinah to give greetings to the Messenger of Allah. Even Paradise did not cause him to forget Muhammad because he knew that he was only entering Paradise due to the fact that he was a follower of Muhammad. He knew that the true sign of his faith was for Allah and His Messenger to be more beloved to him than anything else, including Paradise.

When will you ascend to these degrees, my brother? Will you allow your life to pass by and the meeting with Allah to come without attaining this station? What effect have the passing of the days and nights, your actions, your prayer, your charity, your fasting, your hajj had on you?

 

Martyrs of Mu’tah

The Battle of Mu’tah, in modern day Jordan, took place in Jumada al-Ula in the eighth year of the Hijrah. The Prophet ﷺ had sent al-Harith bin `Umayr Al-Azdi with a letter for the ruler of Busra in Syria. On his way, however, he was intercepted and killed by Shurahbil bin `Amr Al-Ghassani. As a result, the Messenger of Allah ﷺ sent an army to discipline the transgressors. He appointed Sayyiduna Zayd bin Harithah to lead the army and gave him the standard. Sayyiduna Ja`far bin Abi Talib would replace him if he was killed, and Sayyiduna `Abdullah bin Rawahah would succeed Ja`far in case the latter fell. These were among the greatest of the Companions. Continue reading Martyrs of Mu’tah