Friday, 11 July 2014

Qur'an: Spending the cherished

"You shall never attain righteousness
until you spend from what you love.
And whatever it is you spend,
God is fully aware of it."

(Surah Aal Imran, Verse 92)

Spending the cherished:
to give away what one likes and holds dear,
preferring another over one's self,
knowing with certitude that God recompenses.

Saturday, 28 June 2014

Umar: Spiritual well-being

"Pay a great deal of attention to your heart.

Talk to your troops, exhort them
and remind them of the importance of good intentions
and of checking on themselves.

Patience, patience.
For the help of God comes
in accordance with how much one checks himself.

Ask God to keep you safe and sound,
and frequently repeat the words:
'There is no power and no strength except with God.'

Fear God and put your hope in Him,
and do not take anything for granted..."


(Snippets of Umar ibn al-Khattab's advice to Sa'd Ibn Abi Waqqas [may God be pleased with them both] when he appointed him commander over the army in Iraq)

Umar: The visible and hidden signs of faith

"The signs of faith are instilled by God in the heart;
some are hidden and some are visible.

As for that which is visible,
it is when the one who praises a person
and the one who criticises him
on the basis of truth
are the same to him.

As for that which is hidden,
it may be manifested in wisdom
flowing from his heart on his tongue
and people's love for him.

Indeed you can think of your status before God
by checking your status before the people who are with you..."

(Snippets of Umar ibn al-Khattab's advice to Sa'd Ibn Abi Waqqas [may God be pleased with them both] when he appointed him commander over the army in Iraq)

Saturday, 22 March 2014

Ja'far Ibn Abi Talib's summary of Islam for the Negus

"... we were a people in a state of ignorance and immorality,
worshipping idols and eating the flesh of dead animals,
committing all sorts of abomination and shameful deeds,
breaking the ties of kinship,
treating guests badly
and the strong among us exploited the weak.

We remained in this state until God sent us a Prophet,
one of our own people
whose lineage, truthfulness and integrity were well known to us.

He called us to worship God alone
and to renounce the stones and the idols
which we and our ancestors used to worship besides God.

He commanded us to speak the truth,
to honour our promises,
to be kind to our relations,
to be helpful to our neighbours,
to cease all forbidden acts,
to abstain from bloodshed,
to avoid obscenities and false witness,
not to appropriate an orphan's property
nor slander chaste women.

He ordered us to worship God alone
and not to associate anything with Him,
to uphold Salah,
to give Zakah,
and fast in the month of Ramadan.

We believed in him
and what he brought to us from God
and we follow him in what he has asked us to do
and we keep away from what he forbade us from doing..."

Friday, 24 January 2014

Qur'an: The desires of the heart

"Beautified for people
is the love of that which they desire;
of women and sons,
heaped-up sums of gold and silver,
fine branded horses,
and cattle and tilled land.
That is the enjoyment of the worldly life.
And God has with Him the best return."

(Surah 3, Verse 14)

How lucky man is
to have in the desires of his heart
a means
to distinguish himself:
to realise the temporariness of his wants;
to act on them only in what is necessary;
to overcome them for deeds eternal.

Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Qur'an: The Ever-Living, the All-Sustaining

"God:
there is no god but Him,
the Ever-Living, the All-Sustaining."

(Surah 3, Verse 2)

Herein lies a declaration and a proof:
God has no beginning and no end,
and it is He Who sustains all that exists.
And can there be two gods
who have no beginning and no end,
and sustain all that exists?
And can there by any other than God
who is worthy of adoration and worship?

Friday, 20 December 2013

Qur'an: God does not burden a soul

"God does not burden a soul
with more than it can bear."

(Surah 2, Verse 286)

Meaning:
man is not taken to account for involuntary thought
but for intent.

"Each gains whatever good it has done,
and suffers its bad."