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Sunday, June 09, 2013

The Disputations



Twenty six

1. Praise means nothing.

2. True sincerity is that one performs an action for Allah, not for anything or anyone and not for recognition even if it works out or does not. That's sincerity.

3. People praise you because of what they suppose is in you but you should blame yourself for what you know is in you.
4. Your weakness is your reliance on anything other than Allah

5. The person who walks into the king’s court with a high head should be careful, he will get his head chopped off. As for the person who enters the kings court in submission, in humility will remain in the safety and pleasure of the king.

6. When you rely on something other than Allah get ready for what you have to be taken away.

7. Rely on Allah in ease and not just in duress.
8. Some people are tried by having something and others are tried by not having it...
9. May Allah bring the lion who murders to justice.
10. Film making is the art of convincing you that something is happening when actually it is not. Its an art of deception that manipulates and stimulates your emotions into feeling something that does not actually exist. None of it is real but yet we are obsessed about them.
11. Being judgmental is displaying the evil of yourself and not of others.

12. “Our nation was born in genocide when it embraced the doctrine that the original American, the Indian, was an inferior race. Even before there were large numbers of Negroes on our shore, the scar of racial hatred had already disfigured colonial society. From the sixteenth century forward, blood flowed in battles over racial supremacy. We are perhaps the only nation which tried as a matter of national policy to wipe out its indigenous population. Moreover, we elevated that tragic experience into a noble crusade. Indeed, even today we have not permitted ourselves to reject or feel remorse for this shameful episode. Our literature, our films, our drama, our folklore all exalt it. Our children are still taught to respect the violence which reduced a red-skinned people of an earlier culture into a few fragmented groups herded into impoverished reservations.”
― John F. Kennedy

13. Every rose has thorns.

14. Sacrifice for the person on the spiritual path is continuous. Not just once a lifetime but every day, every hour, every minute.

15. Allah sees you all the time; how could you commit sins?.

16. What could’ve been was never meant to be.

17. The ears and the eyes are self cleaning but do you keep them clean by using them in the right manner? The gratitude of them is to use them for acts of worship. So be careful that you do not dirty them up.

18. Part of the believers training in the world is that everything has causes. As when they are in paradise there are no causes. When you wish for something you can have it.

19. When you make an intention to be with someone, you are with them.

20. Sometimes I wonder about those people we feel sorry for now because of the suffering they go through. Will they feel sorry for us of the day of judgement when they see what rewards are awaiting them and what rewards are awaiting us?

Sheikh Atabek Shukurov


Quran Authenticity




Friday, June 07, 2013

Sheikh Umar Al-Khatib

How to become Prophetic people







Syed/Ahl Al-Bayt/Sharif survival guide



We live in times of great turmoil in which the unlawful is readily accessible and the lawful is hard to find. We see changes taking place that are nothing but astounding. We see murder taking place everywhere.

In this mess of human nature we still find the descendant or scion of the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings be upon him) amongst us. This is a great blessing but do we take the full benefit of this? I do not think we do. Or we claim to and love to think we do but the facts are cold and shocking. 

I have yet to find a member of the blessed household that does not suffer from harm from people. If it was warranted then no one would be complaining but most of the time it is not warranted at all. Most of the time it is due to the reactions of extreme partisanship, whether religious or otherwise. 

So this work is aimed at those members of the Ahl Al-Bayt who are struggling to find themselves in the world and are suffering abuse. So most of what is written here will only make sense to a Syed/Sharif as it is addressing them specifically.


Is it a Shia thing?

Most certainly not! This is a Sunni thing! The term Ahl Al-Bayt is used in the Quran and by the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him). Throughout history they have been revered and respected. But in the last hundred years this has slowly eroded and is now mere lip service.

إِنّمَا يُرِيدُ اللهُ لِيُذْهِبَ عَنْكُمُ الرّجْسَ أَهْلَ الْبَيْتِ وَيُطَهّرَكُمْ تَطْهِيرًا

“Allah only desires to remove filth away from you, family of the house, and purify you completely.”(Quran: the Clans 33:33).

When this verse was revealed the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) gathered his family namely Fatimah, Ali, Hassan and Hussain (may Allah be pleased with them all) and made a supplication that these were his family. So this includes the offspring that come from them.

The Shia began as a political party in favour of the leadership of Ali Ibn Abu Talib (may Allah be pleased with him) and it was only after the martyrdom of Al-Hussain (may Allah show him mercy) did they break off from the Sunni tradition. Then formed their own beliefs and so forth but this did not occur in a vacuum it occurred because of the oppression that the leaders of the time metered out to them.


Current circumstances

So when we hear people speak about the issue of Ahl Al-Bayt or Ahle Bait we see speakers use this subject to excite audiences but there is very little in the way of follow up on this subject. So that is why we are saying that love of the Ahl Al-Bayt is lip service and nothing more.

There are only few Muslims who give each other their rights so you can forget about the Ahl Al-Bayt! When someone is arguing with a member of the family they will seek to crush him in any manner they can. Even though they are in the wrong it will not concern them at all, they want to win the argument and will do anything to achieve it.

I have also seen people who debate with Ahl Al-Bayt and when they say something that they do not like then they accuse them of not coming from the family! Is this how we treat Ahl Al-Bayt? When they agree with us then they are Ahl Al-Bayt and if they disagree then they are innovators, mushriqs or even kafirs! How we have lost our way just to win an argument.

There are many people who weep in gatherings for muharram and come out to harm the sons of Al-Hussain. Yes, this is very common, even from some teachers.


The titles

Depending on the part of the Islamic world you come from the Ahl Al-Bayt may be called Syed or Sharif or Hussani or Hassani. The first two terms are famous, Syed for the Indo-pak world and Sharif for the Arab world. Also famous is the name Shah which at times is synonymous with Ahl Al-Bayt; predominately in the Indo –Pak and Indonesian regions. In the Indo-pak regions there are many people who have surnames of Hussain or Sharif and do not belong to the family. Its just there surname, so I would advise people to trace their lineage and find out where this name orginates.

Many leaders historically were Shahs, Sharifs or Syeds in these regions. Although in other regions it may not be so obvious from the surname that someone is from the family. It is also worth noting some Hindu’s also have the surname shah. I have used the term the family in this work using the translation of the word Ahl.

In many cases people are unaware of the status of being Ahl Al-Bayt. This is due to many reasons some of which are the proliferation of people into areas in which they do not have much family. And of course a divorce from cultural norms which is something that any immigrant communities have become known for. Many people try to assimilate into the regions that they have moved into.

The term Sherif meaning someone who was the upholder of the law in an area especially in America. Could have come from Islam as we know that Islam was present in America before the founding fathers came there and there was a systematic removal of all Muslims by a branch of the Spanish Inquisition. And like Spain, many things could not be removed totally and this could have been one of them. So the local leader was a Sharif until this title was taken then used in another way.



Can someone become Ahl Al-Bayt?

It is not a rank that one can aspire to as it is something that they are born with. As it is lineage from the father to the children and this is called nasab which means the father is from Ahl Al-Bayt.

If the mother is Ahl Al-Bayt and the father is not then this is called sibt. The difference being that the nasab continues the lineage and sibt finishes with those children of the female of the Ahl Al-Bayt. Please note, some scholars reject sibt totally, in order not to confuse people.

So a person whose father is Ahl Al-Bayt his lineage continues but the one whose mother is only from Ahl Al-Bayt then it stops with her immediate children.

This is a birth right and cannot be attained; it can only be bestowed by Allah (the Exalted).

Dr Khalid Blankenship's has the opinion that everyone has some blood of the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) in them, including many non-Muslims. There are two ways that someone is from the family of the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him). Both are in terms of lineage. Nasab is when the father of the child is from the family and sibt is when the mother alone is from the family.  When someone's father is Ahl Al-Bayt then that child and his offspring are from the family. When someone's mother is from family and not the father, then the immediate offspring are from the family but after that, the lineage is broken. Not to confuse the public some scholars said that sibt is not Ahl Al-Bayt because their lineage is cut from them.

This is based from the following hadith:

The Messenger of Allah (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) said,
 كل سبب و نسب ينقطع يوم القيامة إلا سببي ونسبي

“Every ancestry and lineage is severed on the day of judgement except my ancestry and my lineage.” (Al-Tabarani in Al-Kabir 3/45 and Al-Daylami in Al-Firdaws 3/255.)

This is why it is important for both to maintain the blood of the family. So even though there might be trace their lineage to a female of the Ahl Al-Bayt. The lineage was cut with her immediate children. This is the dominate position and Dr Khalid's position cannot be accepted because it is an isolated opinion and against the majority. With due respect given to those who differ but the blood of the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) would not be present in a disbeliever. DNA may remain but that would arab DNA and no link. 


Exception?

There is a hadith in which the master of the Messengers (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) said, 

 سلمان منا أهل البيت

"Salman is from us, the family of the house."
Al-Hakim and Al-Tabarani.

This is an exception and not the rule. The background of this hadith is that Salman the persain (may Allah be pleased with him) had suggested that a trench be dug to protect the Medianans against the upcoming armies of the disbelievers. The ansar and the immigrants made statements that Salman was from them. As he had been in search of the last prophet and was taken into slavery to Medinah. So he was not from either Arabian group. Then the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) said, "Salman is from us." Even though, he had no lineage to the Ahl Al-Bayt. As a freed slave belongs to theose who set him free. Salman (may Allah be pleased with him) was assisted and thus able to purchase his freedom. This is an exception and not the rule. 

There is another hadith which is very weak or even fabricated that every upright believer is from the family but it is not accepted.


Marriage issues

Marrying a woman from the Ahl Al-Bayt for a non Ahl Al-Bayt male is not something that should occur because it is cutting the lineage. The non-Ahl al bayt male/female has to consider if they harm their partner then he hurts the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him). This is why a person should try to avoid this as there are other ways to respect Ahl Al-Bayt.

So the responsibility of marrying into the family is as great for a male as it is for a female. As when they marry each other the lineage remains intact and pure. This should be the main consideration when anyone of the Ahl Al-Bayt marries, that it should be to maintain the lineage and increase the blessed offspring.

Regions like Yemen will not allow any Ahl Al-Bayt to marry outside the family and this has to be understood as protecting the purity of the lineage. It is not racist and no one should be offended.



What are their responsibilities?

Unlike the average Muslim who is representing Islam; Ahl Al-Bayt represent their grandfather (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him). This is not as easy as it sounds and many people do fall short because of a lack of knowledge and circumstances. 

Some do not practice Islam as people expect and this is our fault. So you might find someone of the Ahl Al-Bayt committing major wrong actions but know one thing that sooner or later they will repent. So if you admonish them for a sin do it as if you are admonishing your father, i.e. in the most gentle of manner. But also know sometimes people do not listen to admonishment. Even the admonishment of Ahl Al-Bayt to Ahl Al-Bayt has to be gentle or they will both loss blessings.

Imam Ghazali (may Allah show him mercy) said in Nasihat Al-Muluk/Cousel for Kings, "A descendant of Ali (may Allah ennoble his face) lived in Samarqand. One day when he was standing at the door of his house a woman passed by. The lane being empty, he seized the woman's arm and dragged her inside the house. Then he attempted to have intercourse with her. She said, "O Sayyid, first answer me one question. Then do what you please." He replied, "Speak." "If you possess me unlawfully and then I become pregnant by you and then a child comes, what do you think this child will be? A descendant of Ali or fatherless?" "A descendant of Ali," he said."Whether or not you yourself are one of Ali's descendants," she said, "the deed which you intended is something which genuine descendants of Ali would not do." (These words) abashed the descendant of Ali (may Allah ennbole his face). He let go of the woman's arm, and he vowed to Allah The Exalted that he would never treat women, whether near relatives or strangers in that way again."

Look at the wonderful example of this noble woman who reminded the Sayyid about his lineage and did it in a gentle manner. Even though he was very wrong, she did not match it with another wrong action. She instead turned the situation on its head by her gentleness. We do not see this in people today.

The religious or the practicing member of the family should be the best person in his region. Although, we are people and we fail to reach lofty heights that people expect of us. So we ask people to forgive our slackness.

We need to be involved in spreading Islam and sacred knowledge. In a manner that is synonymous with the way it was spread initially and free it from all types of culturalism.

The Ahl Al-Bayt will not be like the average people, they will be different. They will not react to events like others react. They may even be seen as strange or even weird by many people. This is one of the signs that they are from the family.

The Ahl Al-Bayt are more beneficial to others than themselves. Many a time they will help others but no one will help them.

Those of the Ahl Al-Bayt have to know that people will curse, attack, defame them in a myriad of different ways. Sometimes, it will be openly and sometimes secretly because if you are not like us then you are against us. Even giving some the benefit of the doubt means you are opening yourself to attack. So be prepared to forgive those who curse you and attack you. Most of them will come up to you use a respectful title (shah saab) and hurt you in the same conversation or even in the same sentence. Most of the people who claim to respect Ahl Al-Bayt do not. It’s just a term that they like to use to 'big' themselves up. So do not believe a word of the flattery they lavish you with because if you disagree with them over any point they will attack you in the most vicious manner and this is not jest. I have seen this time and time again.

After being insulted by someone who knows you are Ahl Al-Bayt it becomes very difficult to forgive them or over look what they have done but you have to try. As many of them will not be able to fully realise the sins that they are committing until they perish. A good rule of thumb is to expect to be disrespected and you will never be disappointed.

A person of the family should not think he is better than others, even though he is in lineage, but if found wanting in action then he is like others. Yet, if he starts to practice he will make great strides that others are unable to achieve except without extreme struggle.

He should not take advantage of his lineage so he can get things that others cannot. Nor use excuses by treating people in an unjust manner. They have to act responsibly and this is not always easy because often people catch you on a bad day.

I have heard of cases in which a Syed male is cheating people by feigning the rank of a spiritual master and using it to earn wealth. This is of course wrong and this person should be admonished gently then left alone. He is cheating people by Islam which is one the worst sins that anyone could do. Unless he repents his sins will catch up with his eventually.

Know a Syeds sins catch up with him so be vigilant about them. Repent at every given opportunity and try to avoid harming anyone. Also know that a Syed may find obstacles when he tries to commit sin and the person should realise this and refrain.

A Syed should also not have a lot of wealth, if he does then he might lose at some point in his life. You, like others, will have some kind of tribulation that you’ll face almost continuously, so do not expect an easy life. Give charity if you are able and do not ever cheat people by selling out Islam.

There are many of the family who do not even know they are from the Family! So ask your parents and seek out as much information as possible.



What are our responsibilities? How should we treat them?

We have to love them and that is explained in the Quranic injunction:

قُل لا أَسألكم عَلَيه أَجراً إلا المَوَدّةَ في القُربَى
“Say, ‘I do not ask of you a recompense for this, except love for my kinsfolk.” (Quran: Counsel 42:23.) 

Ponder that this command is coming from Allah (the Exalted) to the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) to pronounce that his family should be respected, which a fruit of love. Only someone who loves the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) will respect the member of his family. It does not mention that we love them if they are righteous or hate them if they are unrighteous. We love them righteous or unrighteous. That is the position of Sunni Islam without any regional misinterpretation or modernisation.

If we can practice the command of Allah (the Exalted) in this issue then it fulfils many of our needs. Ponder how you would feel if someone respected your grandson? What would you feel towards that person? You would be happy with that person and a good person would feel indebted. So when you please Ahl Al-Bayt you please the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him). But know that you cannot go against the sacred law in this matter.

The opposite is also true because if you upset Ahl Al-Bayt then you upset the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him). Sheikh Al-Arabi Al-Darqawi was in a gathering where one of the family were insulting him but he did not say anything to him. When the Sharif realised his mistake he apologised to him. Look at the Sheikh’s respect for Ahl Al-Bayt and how he did not react to the slander that he himself was witnessing. This would not happen now because they would attack back in such vigour that they would claim that he was not from the family. I have seen this occur, for less than this, with my own eyes.

If you find that they have taken a right from you or been unjust to you advise then and if nothing occurs then forgive them and leave the matter to Allah (the Exalted). And do not seek it especially if you fear that you may commit injustice. Having something bad in your heart against Ahl Al-Bayt is also very bad, so remove it as soon as you can. Many people attack Ahl Al-Bayt because they have a point to prove and do not realise who they are talking to until it is too late and the offense has occurred.

If you come across someone from the Ahl Al-Bayt without an ancestral tree/Shajara. Then as long he is known to be from the Ahl Al-Bayt in your area that is sufficient. So you should still respect them if they do have one and you should never say to them ‘you are not from Ahl Al-Bayt you don’t have a tree’ which can be heard from those ‘lovers.’ I am not joking I have heard this with my own ears and this because the other person did not agree with the Ahl Al-Bayt so he said the above.  It’s strange how people want to kiss your hand but insult you to your face!

Even if you meet someone who is from Ahl Al-Bayt and they are committing sins do not let that doubt their lineage because if you observe their behavior you’ll eventually find them doing a right action that is extra-ordinary. I knew a Sharif child who frequently misbehaved and he was extremely difficult child to discipline. He was once playing football and another child was hurt, he stopped playing the game and went over the child to see how he was. The game had not stopped at this point and he was on the side that was behind! This was not normal behavior and you can see this type of behavior in the family. They will show compassion for others when you thought it not possible. 

Many people use Ahl Al-Bayt for certain purposes or when it suits their needs and when it does not they discard them like a used rag. They take the benefit of their fame and throw insults at their faces. Someone once said to me, 'How can someone who insults Ahl Al-Bayt consider themselves Muslim?' This alone is sufficient proof that many people are not true Muslims because of this one fact alone.



Closing remarks

If you are Ahl Al-Bayt then try to find your lineage tree. This may be hard to find but try your best. Teach your relatives about the importance and responsibilities you have. Try to live up to the high expectations that people have of you and try to stay away from sin as best you can. Really think about your final journey and try to prepare the best works.

Practice Islam as best as you can and try to be righteous. People need to see the family of the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) striving for the afterlife and not striving after money.  They also need to see good role models unlike us.

Also know that one of the reasons that Allah (the Exalted) turns people against you is so you lose hope in them and turn to Him.

Know that the world is satans playground and you are the child he hates the most so he is going to send unrighteous people after you, so be warned. Satan hates the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) because he is a lantern of guidance and tries to get to him by trying to make the family split up.

People who know Ahl Al-Bayt should try to be good to them and should be extremely vigilant over their actions towards them. If you have wronged them then they should address the wrong straight away lest you are punished or even worse that the punishment is passed onto your children. At the same time you should not allow them to cheat people over Islam, ever. This is something that you cannot stay quiet over and you should say something gently.

You should know that the majority of 'sunni' leadership is corrupt and they still oppress Ahl Al-Bayt. Even if they claim to support them with fundraisers! Thus they are not really Sunni they are nothing but Yazid in another guise. This is more common than you think. The righteous Ahl Al-Bayt in this time are like Ghurabah/the strangers. They are not helped by anyone. They will prefer a subordinate teaching in their places rather than an intelligent member of the Ahl Al-Bayt. Yet, still claim to support the Ahl Al-Bayt! I have seen this 'unislamic' nature of Islamic businesses! Shia have no right to Ahl Al-Bayt whatsoever and that is final!

I pray that Allah (the Exalted) forgives our endless shortcomings and allows us to live up to high expectations. May endless blessings, salutations, benedictions, graces be upon our master Muhammad (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him).


The book Endless nobility of the Ahl Al-Bayt by Sheikh Yusuf Al-Nabahani is no longer available, apologies. Please click here for forty hadith on the Ahl Al-Bayt by Sheikh Yusuf (may Allah show him mercy). 

Wednesday, June 05, 2013

The way of Sheikh Muhammad Al-Yaqoubi


A poem

The way of Shiekh Muhammad is the way of beauty and openness.

A way that is attractive and delightful for the soul and the mind.

He is an embodiment of the prophetic practice which is itself explained in the way of the ulema/scholars.

He is unlike other scholars in the humility he possesses, that those lower than his rank could never achieve.

He is someone who teaches and comes to the people like a bright star bathing them in the light of sainthood that even the blind can see.

He is like a kind father with his students, praying for them before his children. He does not waste his time refuting, as so many others do, instead he teaches thus using his time to the optimum.

Sheikh Muhammad comes into our lives like a ray of hope in the darkness of our formulaic existances to spread some of the light that engulfs him. Directly from the blessed land of Syria.

Some did not understand what Islam meant until they took the testimony of Islam with him. For others it was when they heard him, did they realise that it was he who they had been looking for.

Never afraid to stand up for the truth as others chose different methods he is there giving advice. Who else can do what he can?

To stand on the shores of oppression and injustice calling for peace is not something we could all do, those who do risk their lives.

Those who follow him realise his way and his methods. He welcomes all to dine at the meal of the spiritual path. Do you chose to eat or do you choose to flee?

He never indoctrinates, like so many do, he teaches the right way as indoctrination is ugly and what we have fled from.

How untruthful those are who pretend to follow his path yet hanker to sinful behaviour, your new repentance is not something that you should take lightly.

His is the way of truth and the way that his students should desire to follow. Other paths are open destruction, full of worldly passions that snatch one from the path.

So if you are serious then keep moving with your awrad. Your oath is for Allah and is to be taken seriously.

Why should you listen to any other scholar other than your own? Listen to the words of your teacher, he is your sheikh.

Take as much benefit from his as you can.

His tongue refrains from any words of abuse or harm so your tongue should follow. If you truly follow the way of Sheikh Muhammad Al-Yaqoubi...

Saturday, June 01, 2013

Statement of Intent


Seems very strange to making a statement of intent after almost eight years of service. Yet here we are making a statement that should leave the people visiting this blog without any doubt.

We are not a blog that favours one scholar over another. We are meant to be a window into sacred knowledge for all those who come here. Primarily this is for English speaking scholars and not those speaking other languages as there are plenty of those about elsewhere.

Other than the issues we bring up ourselves there are no controversial issues discussed. If you want to debate then find other places. We do not wish to waste our time debating, so go elsewhere.

Those that are content with this are welcome to the blog and those who are not are welcome as well.

We do wish to open people eyes to certain things and we all hope to rectify ourselves. We are not a blog that causes fitna and nor do we wish to be involved in it. Yet we do hope to address issues that are in need of being addressed but in a constructive manner.

So this is our statement of intent and we intend not to budge from it!