Tag Archives: sins

Developing a Successful Mindset

A person once approached Hazrat Ml. Zakariyya رحمة الله عليه to seek his advice. He told him that for the past two months when I return home from work, I ask my wife, “Is there anything to eat?” We are experiencing severe poverty. When she replies that there is nothing, I opt to spend the day fasting. Hazrat رحمة الله عليه replied, “Alhamdulillah. You are acting upon the Sunnah.”

In other words, Nabi ﷺ did the exact same because he lived a life of poverty too. Therefore, although the situation is difficult, it is close to the Sunnah and reaps rewards. This was Hazrat رحمة الله عليه’s mindset. He would notice the Sunnah more than the difficulty. In contrast, our mindset has drifted far away from the Sunnah. For example, if a man happily announces that he bought a spacious home in a posh suburb with a loan from his bank, what would our response be? Parents would gleefully remark, “Son, you have done well!” His new purchase would become talk of the town. Now his parents would want to purchase items for his new home, like a frame with the Kabah on it. He would be hailed a success.

Yet in reality, what has the son done by taking an interest loan? He has waged war with Allah (Qur’an, 2:278-279). He has incurred his wrath and anger. Yet we are too drunk and intoxicated in the love of this world to notice or care. Considering him successful for indulging in haram shows that our mindset is more materialistic than Islamic.

Allah tells us in the Qur’an that Jannah is being prepared as we speak for the righteous. Righteousness is the criteria. It is the ticket we need to enter the gardens of Jannah, but what does it mean to be righteous? It means to tread carefully and cautiously on earth, avoiding displeasing Him as far as possible. That is success. Not indulging in interest and sins. No matter how common it becomes always remember, a sin is a sin. There is no good outcome for it in the hereafter, even if its worldly state appears beautiful in our eyes.

May Allah align our mindset with Islam and save us from sins that tempt us to displease Him, Aameen.

— Hazrat Ml. Dawood Seedat حفظه الله

Above is an extract from Hazrat’s talk on 08/12/17 in  Masjid Siraatul-Jannah, Ormonde, Johannesburg. To listen to the full talk, please click here.

The cause of sinful disobedience

An electric current flowing through a circuit cannot be seen, but it causes a light to switch on which can be seen. The current of Allah’s love flows through our heart and minds. We may not see it in ourselves or others, but it leads to obedience to Allah, which is a light that can be seen. The sign of a break in an electric current is that the light will not switch on. An electrician needs to be called now, to identify and fix the fault.

The sign of a break in the current of love for Allah, it that a Saalik (a follower of Sufism) will be inclined to disobedience. A Shaikh needs to be called now, to identify and fix the fault. What has caused his love for sin to overpower his love for Allah? Is it Nafs, Shaytaan, or a change in circumstance? The Shaikh is skilled in this regard. He will ask him all the relevant questions, enquiring until the fault is found. Once identified it can be fixed immediately, allowing the current of love to flow smoothly again.

If there is no electric current, the freezer will defrost. If the electrician is quick, he will save the day. However, if it is left broken for too long, the food will rot and emit a foul smell. Now it will take much longer to sort the problem out. Though the fault was small, he left it for long and now it has disastrous consequences. Likewise, when we notice a spiritual weakness, we need to seek help as soon as possible. Otherwise, as time elapses it will worsen leading to disastrous consequences.

May the current of Allah’s love flow through our bodies causing us to live in His obedience and pleasure. Aameen.

— Hazrat Ml. Dawood Seedat حفظه الله

Above is an extract from Hazrat’s talk on 13/11/17 in Masjid-ut-Taqwa, Pietermaritzburg. To listen to the full talk, please click here.

3 ways to develop an Attitude of Gratitude

If we are grateful by being obedient to Allah, He will increase his bounties upon us. Whether it is from a worldly or religious perspective, there is so much we have to be grateful for. Below are three ways to express gratitude:

1. Attribute your success to Allah: When we face difficult moments we make lots of dua for a way out. However, when our duas are accepted and the difficulty is removed, we do not even attribute it to Allah. Instead, we forget him, attributing our relief to our own intellect, luck, money, or a friend who helped us out. What about Allah who helped you out? How quick we are to forget Him.

It is not the means which pulls us out of difficulty, it is the creator of the means who pulls us out of difficulty. Therefore, one way to express gratitude is to thank Him first and most, then thank everyone else. When your child does well in school, thank Allah first then the teacher. When you have medication and you get better, it was not because the doctor cured you. Allah cured you, thank Him first then the doctor.

2. Look at those who have less than you, not those who have more than you: Life can take a wrong turn at times. Rather than complaining at every given opportunity, look further towards people who are suffering more. This will silence our complaints and fill our hearts with the gratitude Allah wishes to see in us. When we were children, it was a norm for people to drive through plush suburbs on Sunday afternoons, when they had nothing else planned. It was a pastime activity, people would drive past marvelling at the big houses and the beautiful gardens.

However, once they would return home, their houses would suddenly look too small or too ugly. This is what happens when we look up towards that which we do not have. We will become discontented with our share of life, greedy and ungrateful. Instead, we should go to poorer areas and see how they live in their small shacks. Once you return to your humble home you will realise, it is not so small and humble after all. In the eyes of many, you live in a palace that they can only dream of having.

To us, life may seem problematic but there are many poor people that would dream of having all your “problems” instead of theirs. A man went to the masjid with no shoes on. He began complaining until he saw a man with no legs. Immediately, he sought Allah’s forgiveness. Therefore, look towards those who less, not those who have more.

3. Be obedient to Allah: Our late Shaikh Hazrat Ml. Yunus Patel رحمة الله عليه used to always give the following example. Sometimes a person holds a family function or a wedding. In that function, a lot of sins take place like photography, intermingling, missing Salah and the playing of music. The event is planned in a way that is contrary to the Sunah. Yet at the end of it when someone asks the host, “How did it go?” he will reply, “Shukr, Alhamdulillah.” In other words, he will thank Allah for making his event run smoothly, though the event was riddled with sin. Hazrat رحمة الله عليه would say that sometimes, this type of gratitude may fall under utterances of kufr. This is because our gratitude is upon sin.

Thanking Allah with our tongues is not gratitude. True gratitude is to please Allah by doing good deeds. If our actions are in line with the Shariah, then even if we do not say “Shukr Alhamdulillah”, we will still be regarded as grateful servants. However, if we limit our gratitude to mere lip service whilst totally violating the laws of Allah, then that is hypocritical, not gratitude. It is like someone bumping into you by accident, apologising and then punching you. Does that make any sense? Would you even accept his apology? No, we would not. Therefore in our relationship with Allah, we must endeavour to make our actions in sync with our words. Express gratitude verbally but more importantly, show it in all that you do.

May Allah grant us the ability to be grateful, Aameen.

— Hazrat Ml. Dawood Seedat حفظه الله

Above is an extract from Hazrat’s talk on 19/09/17 in Masjid Hamza, Effingham Heights, Durban. To listen to the full talk, please click here.

How to become a Friend of Allah

Mujahadah means to strive for the pleasure of Allah. In the early days of Islam, Mashaaikh would prescribe intense spiritual exercises and thousands of dhikr. Sins were not as common, so this required great strength, making it a suitable form of Mujahadah for them.

As time has elapsed, sins have become extremely common making restraint very difficult. Therefore, the greatest form of Mujahadah in the 21st century is to abstain from sins. For example, before the invention of mobile phones, acquiring obscene material was difficult, now it is in our pockets. Just having a phone and not going on filthy sites for the pleasure of Allah is Muajahadah.

Furthermore, back in the days it was difficult to phone an illicit beloved. It was a great risk because what if someone else picked up the house phone? You would have to make an excuse on the spot to hide your haram intent. Now we all have mobile phones there is no need to call the house phone anymore, eliminating the risk of someone finding out. In fact, you do not even need their number anymore! You can just search for them on social media and you are bound to find them somewhere. Maintaining haram relationships is so much easier than it used to be, therefore, abstaining is much more rewarding than it used to be.

After fulfilling the basics of Islam, this is the secret to attaining wilayat (friendship with Allah) and a catalyst to reaching Allah. Without it, the chances of attaining wilayat are slim. May Allah grant us the tawfiq, Aameen.

— Hazrat Ml. Dawood Seedat حفظه الله

(Above is an extract from Hazrat’s talk on 13/11/17 in Masjid-ut-Taqwa, Pietermaritzburg. To listen to the full talk, please click here.)

Life is full of choices

Life is full of choices. At times, we get carried away with our ability to choose between obedience and disobedience. We forget that this choice is a test, not a mark of our authority. In academic exams, those that studied hard would be able to answer correctly, whilst those that did not study would answer incorrectly. Both take the exact same paper, but the former will pass whilst the latter will fail. The exam is taken by all, not just the hardworking students.

Likewise, is life. We are living an exam, those that sin unrepentantly are exercising their choice for which they will soon pay the price. Upon death, this ability will cease to exist. Have you ever seen a deceased man come out of his grave, refusing to be buried? No, because he has no choice. We must not allow it to delude us into thinking we have control over our lives. On the Day of Judgement, our own limbs will speak out against us so what control do we assume, when our own limbs will be out of our control?

When the adhaan calls, you can choose to sleep or wake up for prayer. That is a test. Do not be deceived, your choice will not last for long. When the trumpet is blown, no one will be able to continue sleeping. We will all awaken and march in the same direction, towards an inescapable reckoning.

Therefore, in this worldly life, choose wisely. Those that do not follow Deen, outwardly, it may seem that they are free and in charge of their lives. But in reality, their choices are answers being recorded on this exam of life, for which they will soon pay. Our choice is only given to write this paper. Upon death it will be taken away from all, and gifted back to those who enter Jannah. There in the gardens, their choice will no longer be a test. It will be a blessing via which they will live and do as they please.

May we be amongst them, Aameen.

— Hazrat Ml. Dawood Seedat حفظه الله

(Above is an extract from Hazrat’s talk on 07/11/17 in Masjid-ut-Taqwa, Pietermaritzburg. To listen to the full talk, please click here.)

The leaking bucket

Every time the owner of a home steps up his security system, a thief will step up his stealing skills. Before our cars had a locking system on the door, then thieves learnt how to unpick the lock and steal the car. Then we used steering locks, gear locks, and alarm systems but thieves overcame them one by one.

Shaytan is also a thief but the commodity he is chasing is Imaan. If he cannot snatch our Imaan, he will deprive us of the ability to do good deeds. If he cannot deprive us of the ability to do good deeds like praying Salah or reading the Qur’an, he will try his hardest to contaminate it. For example, he will make the knowledgeable proud over their knowledge and the generous haughty or insolent towards the poor.

If he cannot contaminate the deed, he will try to make a hole in the container carrying the good deed. For example, he will make a person backbite. All his past efforts put into acquiring good deeds will now fall out of the bucket. Therefore, be wary of the tricks of Shaytan, do not let him deter you and be wary of the leaking bucket, do not let it stagnate your spiritual progress.

May Allah save us from his tricks, Aameen.

— Hazrat Ml. Dawood Seedat حفظه الله

(Above is an extract from Hazrat’s talk in ladysmith. To listen to the full talk please click here.)

Be wary of whom you take your deen from

To read this article/transcript, please click on the PDF below:

Be wary of whom you take your deen from

Introductory Note: On the 22nd of August 2017 a marriage conference was held at the Sandton Convention Centre, Johannesburg. Scholars flew in from all over the world to give speeches. The conference was branded as Islamic. However, on the day many laws of the Shariah were violated. This includes free-mixing, acts in which very dirty jokes were made, insults towards the marriage of Nabi ﷺ and utter disrespect towards the noble Abu Hurairah (RA).

In this talk, Hazrat Ml. Dawood Seedat (DB) spoke about these violations and their great, long-term consequences. Hazrat also made mention of the Eidgah in Durban and the Ship cruise. The commonality between all three events is the modernisation of deen caused by lack of ilm and not seeking the guidance of true, upright Scholars. This modernisation is a global problem. The primary advice contained in this transcript deals with the causes of modernisation and how to combat them in light of the Sunnah. Hazrat further speaks about whom we can take our deen from and whom we should avoid, making this transcript one that is applicable to all.

Lastly, any mistakes are the error of the compiler for which I seek Allah’s forgiveness and the reader’s pardon. May Allah accept Hazrat’s work and efforts, aameen.

 

Understanding the power of the Qur’an

It is narrated from Abu Hurairah رضي الله عنه that Nabi ﷺ said: “No people gather together in one of the Houses of Allah, reciting the Book of Allah and studying it among themselves, except that sakeenah descends upon them and mercy envelops them, and the angels surround them and Allah mentions them amongst those who are with Him.”

Sakeenah means tranquillity which only descends upon the hearts of believers. Disbelieving hearts are weakened due to lack of faith and therefore, they cannot contain it. When we were children we used to buy peanuts from the shops. The shopkeeper would shape a newspaper into a cone and fill it with the nuts. However, if we were to buy tea or coffee and put it in that newspaper the liquid would seep through, softening and ripping the newspaper. It does not have the correct properties to contain liquids. Likewise, the hearts of disbelievers do not have the spiritual strength and qualities to contain this sakeenah.

This sakeenah causes believers to grow in faith. Allah says in Surah Fath, ayah 4 that it is He who sent down Sakeenah into the hearts of believers, that they may grow more in Faith. This growth in faith becomes apparent in the amal of a believer. One’s actions are then aligned with the Shariah and the Sunnah. That believer, once this special sakeenah descends, he will not want to remain a mediocre believer who puts in mediocre effort. He will become of those who pray Ishraaq, Awabeen and Tahajjud, and those who exert themselves in their worship and efforts.

Nabi ﷺ further says that the mercy of Allah will envelop that reciter or student of the Qur’an. This mercy makes it easy to say no to sin. Nabi ﷺ would make dua that O Allah grant me your mercy, by enabling me to give up sins. He never sinned but he made this dua to teach us that Allah’s mercy will make it easy for us to give up sinful disobedience. Thus the barakah of the Qur’an is that tranquillity descends then Allah’s mercy which in turn, makes worshipful obedience easier.

Nabi ﷺ then says that the angels also envelop that gathering of the Qur’an. The effects of this are that angelic qualities will rub onto the hearts of those in the gathering too. The deception of the dunya is that a man in an illicit relationship will call his girlfriend an angel. She is no angel for him, even our language is a deception. For believers, when Allah gives us the tawfiq to do amal, that attracts real angels to our gatherings and their presence has a positive effect on us.

Lastly, Nabi ﷺ mentioned that Allah makes mention of these reciters of the Qur’an to those who are with Allah. Mullah Ali Qari رحمة الله عليه says that Allah mentions this to the senior angels who are very close to Allah, and to the souls of all the Prophets and the Messengers عليهم السلام. So imagine that you are sitting here in masjid reciting Qur’an and Allah is telling them that Muhammad the son of so-and-so, is sitting in such-and-such masjid reciting the Qur’an, what a great honour that would be!

Hazrat Ml. Muhammad Zakariyya رحمة الله عليه said, if we had to spend our entire lives to acquire just one of these virtues, it would have been well worth the effort. Yet how fortunate are we, that Allah is willing to give us all of them if we fulfill his conditions first. Therefore, we should never consider recitation and taleem of the Qur’an a light matter. Shaikhul Hind رحمة الله عليه was imprisoned in Malta for 4 years. Upon release, his first advice was to make taleem. He explained that the downfall of the Ummah is due to us being distanced from the Qur’an. He then made it his life mission to open up classes and reconnect people to the word of Allah.

The teacher of Maulana Qasim Seema رحمة الله عليه was Maulana Badriharam رحمة الله عليه. In 1958, one of his students went for Hajj. During his visit to Madinah Munawwarah, he was so touched being close to Nabi ﷺ that he decided to stay there. He made this intention and back in those days, it was easy to settle in Madinah Munawwarah too. However, that night he had a dream of Nabi ﷺ. Nabi ﷺ told him that you going back home and sitting on the mimbar of any masjid in your area teaching the Qur’an, is better than staying here and spending 20 years besides me.

May Allah enable us to really understand these great virtues of the Qur’an and may this understanding become a means of our guidance, Aameen.

— Hazrat Ml. Dawood Seedat حفظه الله

(Above is an extract from Hazrat’s Jumah lecture on 5/8/17 in Madrassah Tarteelul Qur’an. To listen to the full audio, please click here.)

Humble yourself before Allah, He will forgive you

humility

The greater the piety, the greater the humility a believer will show. Our pious predecessors, despite being great men, had such humble opinions of themselves. An example is Hazrat Zunoon Misri رحمة الله عليه from Egypt. Once the river nile dried up, this was a regular occurrence.

People had a belief that to make the nile flow ago, a virgin girl needs to be sacrificed for the nile and her blood needs to flow there. This was a terrible custom that people had reverted to in the days of Ameerul Mumineen Hazrat Umar رضي الله عنه. Seeing this, the governor of Egypt wrote a letter to Ameerul Mumineen, asking what to do.

Ameerul Mumineen sent back a letter. He said to the governor that take this letter and throw it in the nile instead of a virgin girl. As soon as the governor threw it in the water, the nile started to flow again. So the question is, what did the letter say?

It read: “From the slave of Allah Umar رضي الله عنه, Ameerul Mumineen, to the Nile of the people of Egypt. To proceed: If you only flow on your own initiative, then do not flow, for we have no need of you. But if you only flow on the command of Allah, the One, the Subduer and He is the One who causes you to flow, then we ask Allah, may He be exalted to make you flow.” The nile began to flow again.

So this also happened in the time of Hazrat Zunoon Misri رحمة الله عليه. The people of Egypt came to him because he was known for his piety and therefore, his duas were accepted. They asked him to make dua for the nile to flow again. But Hazrat Zunoon had such a humble opinion of himself, he immediately packed his bags and left Egypt.

Like Musa عليه السلام, He went to madyan and as He journeyed, He cried saying that Oh Allah! It can only be due to our sins that the nile has dried up and there is no greater sinner in Egypt than myself. I have now left Egypt so that my evil does not prevent the nile from flowing!

SubhanAllah, look at His humility! Despite his piety, his focus was still on his sins. Such humility is a prerequisite for our repentance to be accepted by Allah. We must make itirafe qusoor (i.e. admit our shortcomings). Never assume that you have only a few sins or just little sins. First recognise and admit your sins, then rely on Allah’s forgiveness.

Once there was a drought in an area, I cannot remember the name of the place, but they began making dua for rain. Eventually, the women of ill repute who would sell themselves, they came together. They said that the rain is being withheld due to our sins, so we must make dua. They admitted their mistakes, sought forgiveness and then had hope that Allah would accept.

In these stories are great lessons for us. We need to develop humility, admit our sins, seek forgiveness and then have hope in Allah. By following these steps, inshaAllah, we too will experience the divine acceptance of Allah.

May Allah grant us the tawfiq, Aameen.

— Hazrat Ml. Dawood Seedat حفظه الله

(Above is an extract from Hazrat’s bayan on 12/5/2017 at Darul Uloom Azaadville.)

The effects of Sins and repentance

image

(Below is an article by Hazrat Ml. Yunus Patel رحمة الله عليه, taken from www.yunuspatel.co.za)

When a person indulges in sins, in disobedience to Allah Ta’ala, then the heart immediately connects with the fire of Hell. As such, one result of sins is heat. The proof of this is drawn from a Masnoon Dua, which was brilliantly and inspirationally explained by Hazrat Maulana Shah Abdul Ghani Phulpoori رحمة الله عليه, a great Shaykh of his time. From the Ahaadeeth we learn different Duas for different occasions. One Dua that was taught to us by Nabi ﷺ is:

“O Allah, wash off my sins with the (melted) water of ice and snow, and purify my heart of sins, just as white clothes are cleansed of filth.”

Let us consider the explanation and meaning of this dua. Hazrat Maulana Shah Abdul Ghani Saheb رحمة الله عليه related that on one occasion he had a most respected guest present during his lesson of Bukhari Shareef. The guest was Hazrat Maulana Dr. Abdul Hayy Saheb رحمة الله عليه who was a senior Khalifa of Hazrat Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi رحمة الله عليه.

During this lesson, Dr. Abdul Hayy رحمة الله عليه posed a question to Hazrat Maulana Shah Abdul Ghani رحمة الله عليه. He asked: “Why did Nabi ﷺ use the words ‘ice and snow’ in this particular Dua?” Hazrat رحمة الله عليه being inspired with an answer from Allah Ta’ala, replied:

“There are two major effects that follow the commission of sins. Darkness in the heart

1)       Darkness in the heart

Rasulullah ﷺ explained: “When a Mu’min (believer) sins, a black dot appears on his heart. If he repents and seeks Allah’s forgiveness, his heart becomes cleansed and polished. If he continues to commit more and more sins (without repenting), the spot continues to spread and ultimately covers all of his heart.”

2)       Heat

By means of sins, a person links himself to the fire of Hell. As a result, such a person’s body also produces a kind of heat.

My Shaykh, Hazrat Maulana Hakeem Muhammad Akhtar Saheb رحمة الله عليه has mentioned, that generally, when a person is committing a lot of sin, especially if he is entangled in illicit love, then the effect of his sins is so intense and severe, that even his head becomes heated. Of course, this does not mean that every person whose head is heated is involved in sin. It may be that the person is ill or suffering with high temperature, e.t.c.

So consequently, the second quality of sin is that it produces heat. Hazrat Maulana Shah Abdul Ghani Saheb رحمة الله عليه then explained that the attribute of ice is its coolness and the apparent characteristic of snow is its whiteness.

Thus, the two effects of sins are removed with the two effects of snow and ice. The whiteness removes the darkness and the coolness effaces the heat. SubhanAllah!

Moreover, why is ‘white’ cloth used in the Dua? This is because a black cloth will not disclose the spots and marks of dirt, even after having been washed, but white cloth is sure to reveal the slightest trace of dirt. These are explanations that should be most appreciated by students of Deen as well as Saalikeen.

My Shaykh had also explained that if we are deficient in our Love of Allah Ta’ala, and our hearts have become dark and heated due to the commission of sins, then an easy route to giving up our sins, sincerely repenting, purifying our hearts and becoming the friends of Allah Ta’ala is to make friends with His Friends.

May Allah Ta’ala grant us the Taufeeq of Rujoo Ilallaah and His Friendship.