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How to Kiss Hajr e Aswad (Black Stone) During Hajj


The importance of kissing Hajre Aswad and the significance it has for a Muslim are evident from the previous post, which showed the references from Hadith of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) the importance of the stone. Thus, out of respect and to fulfill the tradition of Hajre Aswad Muslims kiss the stone whenever they are doing Tawaf e  Kaaba.

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Pertaining to the kissing of Hajre Aswad, it is done during Tawaf in the days of Hajj. Without any doubt Hajj is one of the greatest congregations on the surface of this planet, therefore, kissing the Black Stone is not an easy thing to do when millions of others are also striving towards it. In this regard, those who are able to kiss the stone in person can do so, whereas those who are not able to go close to the stone because of all the crowd and hustle can raise their hand and point towards it which represents the same reverence as would a kiss do. Therefore, kissing the stone is not mandatory; rather it can be done by waving towards the stone as well.

Although there is an option of kissing the stone from a distance, however, there are ardent lovers of the stone who want to kiss the stone in the traditional way so that they are able to fulfill the tradition of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). For such people, there is a systematic way by following which they can increase their chances of kissing the stone. The following lines shall discuss few steps that can help in increasing the probability of kissing Hajre Aswad during Tawaf.

Step#1

The first step is of getting into the line of people who are along with the line of Kabah. The best way to start it is by getting into the line at Yemini corner.

Step#2

The second step is of sticking with the wall of Kabah. In doing so you need to make sure that one hand of yours should be constantly touching the Kabah wall so that you aren’t dragged away into the crowed. In addition, the second thing to do is to make sure the hand of yours that is towards the crowd is in a laid down position, so that you don’t push someone unintentionally when the hustle grows.

Step#3

The third step in progression towards the Hajre Aswad is not to break the flow and move forward within the current. The line moves forward inch by inch, therefore, any trying of overtaking the other person or changing the line and then moving ahead will all be in vain. Therefore, the best ploy is to go with the current and not break it.

Step#4

When you start getting near to the mob, now would be the best time to start reciting your Adhkars as when you grow nearer the pressure of the crowd increases and in such situation, it is quite natural that you might get impatient and forget your adhkar. Therefore, start reciting them when you are in line.

Step#5

When you will be reaching close to the corner, where perpendicular current will also be trying to push you, at that point, you need not to panic; rather you must use the force from opposite direction to your advantage, as all it will be doing is pushing you closer to the stone. Therefore, instead of fighting the current, maneuver to your benefit and move closer to the mob.

Step#6

If at some point you feel that you cannot handle the pressure of the crowd, then instead of panicing and removing your hand from the wall of Kabah, you must find the rings that are there instilled in the wall. These rings will help you maintain your center of gravity.

Step#7

When you get within feet or inches of the Stone, start reciting the duas you can remember and ask refuge and help from Allah Almighty. When you are near the stone and everyone is pushing, it can turn out to be a state of frenzy and you might push someone. Therefore, ask Allah Almighty to give you patience and courage to reach the stone with ease.

Step#8

Once you have reached the stone, then instead of losing your senses at the sight of the stone and sticking there for long, the wise thing to do is to just kiss it and move on quickly. If you stay there even for a second longer, then chances are that the incoming crowd would push you and you may fall, which is a risk you should never take in such a crowded place. Therefore, kiss the stone and move on quickly without giving a chance to others to push you.

Remember, while kissing the holy black stone is gives an immense feeling of being blessed by Almighty, it also requires you to follow a systematic approach to help your kissing cause come true peacefully. For that, you are suggested to keep these guiding steps in your mind that will ultimately help you towards kissing of stone.

Implications Of Faded Satanic Influence In Ramadan


Ramadan is the most auspicious time of the year in Islamic Calendar, which comes up with an opportunity for the believers to set their lives back on the right track of righteousness. It is because of barakah (blessing) of this holy month that Muslims all over the world suddenly start praying, learn Quran and carry out other good deeds while fasting. It is also believed according to the Prophetic (PBUH) traditions that major Shaitaan (Satan) are blocked from harming conscious of individuals during Ramadan.

“When the month of Ramadan starts, the gates of the heaven are opened and the gates of Hell are closed and the devils are chained.” (Bukhari and Muslim)

The above mentioned Hadith suggests that with the start of this sacred period of time, gates of Jannah (Paradise) are unlocked while those of Jahannam (Hell) are locked along with fastening of the evil spirits. Most of the people argue that if Shaitaan are shackled for the duration of Ramadan, then why Muslims still commit wrongdoings. It is because context of the aforementioned Saying of Hazrat Muhammad ﷺ is misinterpreted. Locking down the devils here means that their influence on a common person is not that much effective in Ramadan as it happens to be in normal days. It is the same reason why all of sudden, Muslims are routinely attracted towards morality and uprightness in this month as compared to others.

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In order to better understand this concept, let us discuss it further in the light of the Holy Quran and Ahadiths.

Ability to Choose between Right and Wrong

Although, manipulation power of the Lucifer is weaken for the period of Ramadan, but it does not mean that one would automatically get rid of all evils. Allah SWT has placed enough consciousness in an individual`s mind to let it choose between the right and the wrong. That is why the Almighty Lord says in His Consecrated Scripture:

influence in ramadan

“For each one of you, are successive [angels] before and behind him who protect him by the decree of Allah. Indeed, Allah will not change the condition of a people until they change what is in themselves. And when Allah intends for a people ill, there is no repelling it. And there is not for them besides Him any patron.” [Quran, 13: 11]

This Ayah Kareem clearly indicates that the Creator of the universe has awarded every human being with sufficient willpower and awareness to select the right path. It is up to us how well we utilize our intelligence and embrace the righteousness. Due to our ill routine during other months of the year, we are not always able to live up to the true spirit of Ramadan. That is the reason why our inner self is easily diverted towards immorality and forbidden acts even during Ramadan.

Weaker Authority of Satan

When a country enlarges its security within the city to restrict possibility of potential robberies; it will apparently bring about a decrease of theft in the town. However, some expert and tough burglars will still squeeze through and continue with their unlawful activities; though in a much less effective way than before. Same is the case with Shaitaan, who as compared to great restrictions, can still manage to deceive us in a constrained style.

“The Shaitaan circulates in the body of Adam’s offspring, as one’s blood circulates in it.” (Bukhari)

It means that in ordinary days of the year, Satan is as close to us as circulating blood in our body. But on the other hand, in Ramadan, it is not that nearer that is why its influence is weakened which results in more piety and carrying out of religious actions. But its swaying impulse still can mislead us from the way of righteousness in less effectual way.

Taking Help from Quran and Prostration

Believing in fact that a Muslim can still be influenced by bad side of its nature in Ramadan, we can take help from reading Quran and prostration (Sajdah) in order to get rid of satanic power. Uthman ibn Abi al-’Aas (R.A) narrated the Holy Prophet ﷺ saying as:

‘When the son of Adam recites the Ayat of Sajdah (Prostration) and then falls down in prostration, the Shaitaan goes into seclusion and weeps and says: “Alas!  Woe unto me, the son of Adam was commanded to prostrate, and he prostrated and Paradise was entitled to him; and I was commanded to prostrate, but I refused and am doomed to Hell.’” (Muslim)

This previously stated Hadith tells us the great benefits of reciting the Holy Quran which includes the Verse of Prostration. It leads to one`s falling in Sajdah in front of Allah SWT, which in turn is the resultant of failure of Shaitaan in influencing a believer`s actions as one gets nearer to the Most Merciful.

Seeking Protection of Allah SWT through Prayers

Although Muslims are mostly busy in good deeds during Ramadan, but some of us are still weaker against satanic whispers and lack consistency in upholding decency. That is why the Almighty Lord says in Furqan e Hameed:

satanic influence

“And if an evil suggestion comes to you from Satan, then seek refuge in Allah. Indeed, He is Hearing and Knowing.” [Quran, 7: 200]

It means that whenever one feels being persuaded towards forbidden acts in Ramadan; it should make Dua (Supplication) to the Gracious God to seek His Refuge against the accursed enemy of Muslims.

In short, one is not completely safe from the control of satanic evils and thoughts even in Ramadan rather they are made to have considerably lesser power than in ordinary days. One still ought to protect itself from the influence of Shaitaan through honest efforts.

Islamic Dress Code for Men – Major Elements to Consider


Although one needs to see the inner beauty and character of a person to reach some judgment about the person, however, this does not mean that one should ignore the physical appearance of a person at all. The way a person looks from the outside is that gives the first impression about what a person is like or from which place or school of thought a person belongs to.

When it comes to physical appearance in general and dressing in particular, Islam gives clear instructions about how both the genders dress, so that they do not break the rules of Islam and in their dressing there is modesty. In addition to women, Islam has also spoken about the way Muslim males should dress.

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The lines below give the general Islamic instructions pertaining to male dressing.

Avoid The Haram Elements:

Although in Islam there is great freedom to Muslim in terms of wearing the kind of dress they like to wear, however, there are some limits which should not be crossed by a male Muslim. In this regard, a Muslim is not supposed to wear gold and silk in part of dressing or the whole attire. Regarding this, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said in His hadith:

“These two (gold and silk) are forbidden for the males of my ummah and permissible for the females.” (Ibn Majah)

From this hadith of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) it is clear that both silk and gold are Haram and impermissible to Muslim men, therefore, they need to avoid the dressing which includes these two elements. If these two elements are present in the dressing, then the dressing will be Haram and against the teaching of Islam. Other than that, Muslims can wear any dress made out of skin of animals, their fur or the stuff made out of them.

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Avoid See-through Dresses:

The second thing that Muslim men need to avoid in their dressing is the see through dresses. When the dresses are see through the ultimate result of it wall will be people being able to see the Aurah (the mandatory covering region). Hence when the Aurah of a person becomes visible, it is counted in the category of sin. Therefore, in order to avoid any such situation, Muslim men should refrain from wearing see through garments, until and unless they are wearing some kind of undergarment that protects their Aurah.

Avoid Imitation:

It is narrated that once Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) saw Hazrat Ali wearing two garments that were dyed with safflower, seeing which He said:

“These are the garments of Kuffar, do not wear them.” (Muslim)

From this ayah it becomes clear that a Muslim is not supposed to copy the non-Muslims when it comes to wearing of dress.  The dress of a person is a part of his identity, therefore, when one starts copying the non-Muslims in dressing, it means that the person is prone to accepting their values as well and losing his own Muslim identity. Therefore, for this very reason, a Muslim must avoid imitating the non-Muslims with regards to the type and kind of dressing worn.

Avoid Women Dressing:

In addition to refraining from gold and silk, Islam also instructs its followers to avoid dressing like women. It is quite evident that there is a difference between the way women dress and the way men dress, therefore, to keep things simple and to avoid any kind of awkward situation, a Muslim must refrain from dressing like women. In this regard, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said in His hadith:

“Cursed be the men who imitate women and the women who imitate men.” (Bukhari)

Therefore, men must avoid imitating women in dressing and similarly women must avoid imitating men in their dressing. Checkout the Islamic dress code for Muslim Women.

Start From The Right:

In addition to the apparel, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) has also spoken about the way a Muslim should start wearing a dress. In addition to starting wearing the dress with Bismillah (In the name of Allah) a Muslim must start wearing the dress from the right side. Regarding this, Prophet (PBUH) said in a hadith:

“When you get dressed and when you do wudoo, start on the right.” (Abu Dawood)

Hence, a Muslim must try wearing the dress with the right side first and then moving on to the left part of the attire.

Avoid Arrogance:

In the world of today, the dressing of a person has become a status symbol. Although Islam emphasizes on wearing clean and pleasant clothes and having modest dressing, however, it condemns the element of arrogance associated with it. Prophet (PBUH) said:

“No one will enter Paradise in whose heart is a mustard-seed of arrogance.”

The companion asked:

“What if a man likes his clothes to look nice and his shoes to look nice?”

Prophet (PBUH) replied:

“Allah is beautiful and loves beauty; arrogance means rejecting the truth and looking down on people.” (Muslim)

Therefore, if the dressing is worn with the objective of making oneself superior and to make other people think that they are inferior, then it is strongly prohibited in Islam, whereas, if it done for the purpose of looking beautiful, whilst being modest, then such dressing is allowed in Islam.

Above Ankle:

Another important thing that Muslim men need to ensure in their dressing is the fact that their lower garment should be above their ankles. It means that the pants part of the dress should be above ankles. In this regard, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said:

“Whatever of the lower garment is beneath the ankles is in the Fire.” (Bukhari)

This hadith of Prophet (PBUH) is specific to males, therefore, it is imperative that Muslim men avoid any such garment that hangs loose below the ankle length.

Conclusion:

In a nutshell, the aforementioned are the major elements that Muslim men must ensure in their dressing. The presence of these elements gives them a Muslim identity and makes sure that they are as Muslim in their appearance as they are at their hearts.

Islamic View On Criticizing Repenting Sinners


Islamic View On Criticizing Repenting Sinners

Allah SWT has created humans in the most desirable manner which is why they are known as the Supreme Creations. A man is given enough conscious to make its own decisions as the brain of a human being is the most highly developed. But that does not guarantee that they are perfect in every sense. Over the course of history of mankind, it has regularly fallen in wrongdoings and transgression from the Almighty Lord`s commandments. That is the reason why the Most Gracious has sent His Prophets to guide their respective nations mainly to make them realize about Oneness of God.

repenting sinners

“Indeed, Allah does not forgive association with Him, but He forgives what is less than that for whom He wills. And he who associates others with Allah has certainly fabricated a tremendous sin.” [Quran, 4: 48]

The above mentioned Ayah shows that man has always been associating false gods with the Most Merciful, Who has clearly declared that this one offense is not tolerable in His court on the Day of Judgment. It means that Polytheism is the biggest of the misdeeds as it is directly opposing the Greatness of the Almighty Lord. And also that other sins apart from that could be pardoned by the Most Compassionate. It is also commonly observed that people tend to publicly ridicule the wrongdoings of others when they come to know about it which is not a likeable action according to Islamic teachings as Allah SWT is the most Rightful Judge of all.

criticizing others sins

Now let us elaborate this delicate topic of criticizing others` sins in the light of Quran and Sunnah in order to become aware of our responsibility in this regard:

Committing Sins is Part of Life

We humans are always under a constant threat of transgression one way or the other. Sometimes, it is down to our own will and we can control things but still due to forceful satanic influence, sins are committed by most of us. It may also be because of lack of compactness of one`s religious faith, but then there is not a single person ever lived on the surface of the earth apart from the Sacred Prophets who has never sinned. The Apostle ﷺ of God has said:

“By Him in Whose Hand is my life, if you were not to commit sin, Allah would sweep you out of existence and He would replace you by those people who would commit sin and seek forgiveness from Allah, and He would have pardoned them.” (Muslim)

It means that it is in human nature that a man has to carry out crime at some point in life because Allah SWT has given Shaitaan enough power to maneuver thoughts and actions. But that is not all; He has always awarded us with sufficient degree of awareness of the right and wrong and has made it clear that He listens to our requests for clemency over sins all the time as discussed in the previously stated Hadith.

Repentance Leading to Forgiveness

Since no one is free from the evil of misconduct, it should not be treated as a non curable state. In the Holy Quran, Allah SWT has repeatedly informed us of His Kindness and Mercy and that He is open to listen to every kind of entreaty of His servants. It can be observed in the following Quranic lines:

view on repenting sinner

Say, “O My servants who have transgressed against themselves [by sinning], do not despair of the mercy of Allah. Indeed, Allah forgives all sins. Indeed, it is He who is the Forgiving, the Merciful.” [Quran, 39: 53]

It shows that the Most Compassionate does not leave the true believers in state of despair for their crimes in this world; rather He is ever ready to excuse their misbehavior and grant them with His Clemency. Rasulullah ﷺ, when used to visit the graves, he would always cry to till the moment the soil would become wet with His tears. If a Prophet who is the most consecrated among humans weeps for Allah`s Mercy, then why we should not do so. The Holy Prophet ﷺ said regarding the matter of being remorseful over wrongdoings:

“The one who repents from sin is like one who has never sinned.” (Ibn Majah)

The above mentioned Hadith clearly suggests that feeling sorrow when one has committed a wrongdoing and asking for Allah`s Clemency is almost equal to a state of purity. It means that the Almighty Lord readily forgives all the sins of a person that one asks His Mercy for.

Keeping Away from Criticizing Others` Sins

It is commonly seen in our society that majority of us are looking for shortcomings in others` lives. It may be because of hatred toward a particular person or any other personal reason that some of us take it their responsibility to expose people for their crimes in public and feel proud about it. Some may also count themselves as superior to the wrongdoers with a view of being more pious than them which is actually an act which destroys one`s good deeds as self-importance is not allowed in Islam. The Messenger ﷺ of Allah said:

“Muslims are brothers. They do not treat each other cruelly and do not give in each other to the enemy. Whoever meets a need of his Muslim brother Allah will meet a need of his own. Whoever saves a Muslim from a trouble, Allah will save him from one of his troubles on the Day of Judgment. Whoever conceals a Muslim’s fault, Allah will conceal his faults on the Day of Judgment.” (Bukhari)

This Hadith plainly describes the great importance of hiding the wrongdoings of fellow believer, which is an act that leads to covering up of one`s own errors in the hereafter. Allah SWT says in the Holy Quran:

islamic view on repenting

“O you who have believed, avoid much [negative] assumption. Indeed, some assumption is sin. And do not spy or backbite each other. Would one of you like to eat the flesh of his brother when dead? You would detest it. And fear Allah; indeed, Allah is accepting of repentance and Merciful.” [Quran, 49: 12]

If a mere suspicion over others` conduct is a crime, then one can imagine how much a bigger sin publicizing others` transgressions will be. It is because there is only One God who knows what is present in the hearts of His servants. It may well be possible that we hate on a certain individual for his offenses, but the Most Merciful has already pardoned him because of his repenting over sins.

In short, every one of us should avoid from taking pleasure in discussing personal matters of others and leave them in the hands of the Creator of the universe, knowing that He is the Only One worthy of judging His servants.

 

Importance of Salah (Prayer) According to the Holy Quran


Salah is the major form of worship that a Muslim offers five times a day regularly. It is an obligation upon a Muslim and a Muslim is to offer no excuse when it comes to offering Salah. The offering of Salah in addition to representing the submission of Muslims to their Lord also has other benefits as well which are highly cherished by every Muslim.

The establishment of Salah is one of the major topics upon which Quran has emphasized more than anything else. In Quran Allah Almighty has stressed upon Muslims to learn to offer Salah regularly and with mentions of offering Salah Allah has also mentioned its benefits with it as well. The lines below give the major benefits of Salah that elaborate the importance of Salah.

Significance of Performing 5 time Prayers

Invoking Allah:

Although there is no constraint upon a Muslim on how to invoke Allah Almighty, however, prayer is the preferred means of doing so as when a person worships Allah he or she develops a connection with Allah and any invocation within that or after that connection is bound to be accepted by Allah more compared to invocation done in any other circumstance. In Quran, Allah Almighty says:

Allah is With Those Who Offer Namaz and Stay Patient

“O you who have believed, seek help through patience and prayer. Indeed, Allah is with the patient.” (2:153)

Therefore, a Muslim must use prayers as a means of invocation and ask Allah Almighty for help and assistance in any difficulty or worry.

Leading To Taqwa:

Piety or righteousness is the prime objective which a Muslim has to achieve in this life. All the instructions, constraints, freedom, rights and education provided by Islam are with the objective that a Muslim becomes pious and moves on the righteous path. In this regard, prayer has a great role to play as it promotes Taqwa or piety in the follower. In Quran, Allah Almighty says:

“This is the Book in which there is no doubt, a guidance for those who have Taqwa: who believe in the unseen, and who establish Salah, and spend out of what we have provided for them.” (2:2-3)

Therefore, in addition to giving charity and believing in the unseen, a Muslim must also establish Salah in order to move towards Taqwa.

Reward In The Afterworld:

Every deed, whether good or bad that a Muslim undertakes in this life, he or she will have to be answerable for it in the afterlife. Although all the deeds get rewarded in the afterlife, however, the actual reward of Salah will truly be realized in the afterlife when Allah Almighty will shower special blessings on that person. In Quran, Allah says:

Who Offer Namaz will not Grieve

“Indeed, those who believe and do righteous deeds and establish prayer and give zakah will have their reward with their Lord, and there will be no fear concerning them, nor will they grieve.” (2:277)

 

Therefore, prayer is not something that ends in this world, rather the real reward of it will come to surface in the afterlife.

Staying Connected With Allah:

Muslims who realize that Allah Almighty is their Lord and the Giver of everything, they try to develop a relation with Him and wish to stay connected with Him as much as possible so that their relation grows strong. Salah can effectively help in achieving so, as Allah says in Quran:

Establish Prayer Benifits and Significance

And when you have completed the prayer, remember Allah standing, sitting, or [lying] on your sides. But when you become secure, re-establish [regular] prayer. Indeed, prayer has been decreed upon the believers a decree of specified times. (4:103)

Therefore, performing prayers is a means of developing a connection with Allah Almighty and when a Muslim does so five times a day, then the consequent relationship is to naturally grow strong.

Protection From Satan:

Satan is an open enemy of believers and all what he tries is to make people go stray from the path of righteousness and go down in the path of oblivion and darkness. Satan tries to tempt a person in all the possible ways and when a person once listens to him, he gradually lures him or her down further into the pit of darkness. Therefore, seeking protection from Satan is also imperative for a Muslim. In Quran Allah Almighty says:

Namaz Protects from Satan

Satan only wants to cause between you animosity and hatred through intoxicants and gambling and to avert you from the remembrance of Allah and from prayer. So will you not desist? (5:91)

Therefore, not offering prayer is actually falling into the prey of Satan, whereas those who try to offer and establish prayer are actually resisting his temptation and when these temptations are resisted for long the result is one not falling prey to Satan ever again on any forefront.

Prevention From Lewdness:

In life, a Muslim gets exposed to all sorts of environments and people, all of which have a direct impact on the personality of the person. There is no denying the fact that the current plight of the people of the world is miserable where they are more prone towards ills and lewdness compared to goodness, thus if a Muslim starts being like other people, he or she goes down the road of darkness. Thus, in order to prevent one’s self from all the lewdness that is common in the world of today, a Muslim must find refuge in Salah as it will help in combating lewdness, as Allah says in Quran:

Prayer Prevents From Lewdness

Recite, [O Muhammad], what has been revealed to you of the Book and establish prayer. Indeed, prayer prohibits immorality and wrongdoing, and the remembrance of Allah is greater. And Allah knows that which you do. (29:45)

Therefore, a Muslim must consider Salah as an effective weapon when it comes to fighting lewdness and evils of all sorts.

Conclusion:

In a nutshell, those who learn and read Quran on regular basis are familiar with the importance of Salah and how strongly has Allah Almighty emphasized on it and explained its importance to the people in Quran. A Muslim must realize that above anything, Salah is an obligation and every Muslim has to fulfill his or her obligation.