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by the Ahlul Bayt Digital Islamic Library Project
Updated: 4 hours 18 min ago

God’s Fashion Show

Fri, 07/21/2017 - 14:25

21st November, 10 am: All schools close and everyone is sent home in preparation for the storm that would soon make its way to the city.

Citizens wait in anticipation, wondering when the heavy, looming grey clouds will decide to unload their burden and shower the Earth with their boon.

Their patience finally pays off at 12:30 am on the 22nd of November, as a flash of lightning brightens up the sky. In order to get a perfect view of the rain throughout the night, I made a makeshift mattress just beneath our window and fell asleep with the cool breeze blowing on my face.

At 3:45 am, I was awoken because of rain drops falling all over my feet. As I turned to the window, a series of lightning flashes met my eyes, and I prepared myself to enjoy the stunning view.

The flashes got more frequent, the rumbling got louder, and the rain started falling faster. I held my blanket close. My thunder phobia started creeping all over me, and I sunk deeper and deeper into my blanket until I finally covered my ears with it to block out the fearsome sounds.

I made my way to the hall balcony to distract myself, dragging my blanket with me. Even though my blanket was nothing more than a bunch of cotton threads weaved together, having it with me made me feel safe. I had a shield to protect me from the dangers of the storm going on before me.

As I sat on the sofa to watch the stormy scene, my eyes fell on two men, absolutely drenched, scampering beneath the building, looking for shelter from the pounding rain and raging wind. And as bolts of lightning cracked the sky, I realized that sometime in the future, I’m going to see this exact same scene again, on a day commonly known as The Day of Reckoning.

The ongoing storm was a preview of the Might of Allah (SWT) that we will all glimpse on that day, a day that mountains will crumble, the sun will descend, Heaven and Hell shall be brought forth and the Earth shall split to allow all its inhabitants, from Adam to the End, to make their way to the courtroom of The Almighty.

The scampering men were the sinners, oppressors, God-deniers, ungrateful servants, running helter-skelter, in search of any refuge from the disaster they will be made to face.

Then there were the Believers, clinging on to their book of good deeds, the way I held onto my blanket. The deeds that we shall have to present to Allah (SWT) on that day are in reality, as capable of saving us from the Wrath of Allah (SWT) as my blanket would be able to prevent a bolt of lightning from making its way through my window and electrocuting me. Yet, we shall hold on to our insignificant deeds, taking them where ever we will go on that day, hoping that they may provide some protection, some help against the events of that Yawn ul Hashr.

And lastly, there will be those people who shall be calm, oblivious to what’s going on, relaxing on thrones and eating fruits to pass their time, like those who peacefully slept through the thundering city storm.

As I continued to watch the full-of-life sky, a plane made it’s way towards it, almost flinging itself onto the thunder, and I stared amazed as not one, not two, rather 6 daring planes took off into the night! I watched shell-shocked as they disappeared into the flashing sky.

I smiled. When you’re staring awe-struck at a cosmic display of power, imagining what this thunderous scene would look like from above the Earth, your mind tends to get overwhelmed with the Ultimate and Complete power of Allah (SWT), and you start to think about your own insignificance and may even question what, if any, is your worth?

But those planes reminded me, that though we humans are, at an average, 5 feet tall beings, with small digits for fingers and toes, a hole for a mouth, a collection of grey mushy stuff for a brain, living on one tiny planet in one tiny solar system, in one tiny galaxy, of an ever-expanding universe, YET, we humans, if we put our mind to it, can manage to come up with ways of overcoming the challenges of nature itself. We were capable of the impossible, and with will power and determination, the Human Race was invincible, because, from all of Allah (SWT)’s Magnificent Creations, it is we, and we alone, who are The Best Of Creations!

A Hadith of Imam Ali (as) springs to mind:

‘You presume you are a small entity, but within you is enfolded the entire Universe … … Therefore you have no need to look beyond yourself. What you seek is within you, if only you reflect..’

As the storm subsided, the rain slowed down and clouds cleared, the sound of the Adhaan reached my ears from the Masjid nearby. It reminded me of a fashion show, how the designer comes forward to take their final bow, after displaying all their amazing work. After God showed off His Absolute Power to the world, His servants then came forward to proclaim and admit His Greatness. As two Adhaans clashed with each other, I realized that there could have been no better ending to this wonderful night, than the sounds of Allahu Akber echoing everywhere…

May Allah (SWT) Guide us to use our intellect and potential as Human Beings in the best possible way, and may we be Blessed with an abundance of opportunities to do good deeds in order to help us on the day when man shall have no helper. Ameen.

To explore more on the themes of this blog post, take a look at the following texts on the Al-Islam.org library:

Hadith e Halila : Tradition of the Myrobalan Fruit https://www.al-islam.org/tradition-myrobalan-fruit-hadith-al-halila-imam-jafar-al-sadiq A thought provoking dialogue between Imam Ja’far al-Sadiq (a) and an atheist physician from India. Using logical arguments and the Myrobalan fruit as its theme the Imam convinces the atheist beyond doubt of the existence and attributes of Almighty Allah.
Hadith e Mufaddal
https://www.al-islam.org/tradition-of-mufaddal-pearls-of-wisdom-from-imam-jafar-as-sadiq Pears of wisdom by Imam Jaffar al Sadiq a.s. on nature and its environments, human health, animal kingdom, natural disasters and the immense ingenuity of the Almighty manifested in this entire universe as would be a solace for the believers.
God and His Attributes
https://www.al-islam.org/knowing-god-sayyid-mujtaba-musavi-lari Belief in God, God in the Qur’an, free will, and a discussion of some of the attributes of God. Translated by Dr. Hamid Algar.
Resurrection Judgement and the Hereafter
https://www.al-islam.org/resurrection-judgement-and-hereafter-sayyid-mujtaba-musavi-lari Aspects of death, pleasures of this world, evidence for resurrection, resurrection a manifestation of Divine justice, compensation for sins, and criterion for judgement.
Reflections on the Munajaat of Imam Ali (a)
https://www.al-islam.org/articles/reflections-munajat-imam-ali-mosque-kufa-mohammad-ali-shomali

The post God’s Fashion Show appeared first on Al-Islam.org Blog.

The Ways of Servitude: Ramadan Kareem Guide

Sun, 05/28/2017 - 04:23

In the name of Allah the most Merciful Beneficent

All praises are meant for Allah the Lord of Worlds, We are fortunate to have Ramadan the blessed month of mercy and forgiveness back in our lives once again. This month excels all other months regarding sublimity and nobility. It’s sublime because it is the month of Allah, and it’s noble because it revives our souls as rainwater revives the parched and barren earth. Our souls, due to excess of sins and negligence of Allah’s remembrance, become unresponsive to the remembrance of Allah and words of guidance. Ramadan, the august month of mercy and forgiveness, brings back life in our souls with fasting, prayers, reading of holy Quran, abstinence from sins, and increased remembrance of Allah.

As each moment of this glorious month is vitally important, we should make all our efforts to receive maximum benefit from this blessed month. Here we present a guide on the month of Ramadan. This guide helps us in performing important acts of worship during this noble month and also provides links to relevant, useful knowledge on the month of Ramadan from different aspects.

Before presenting recommended daily duas and special acts of worship in the blessed month we’ll share some books and articles links on the concept, philosophy, necessity of fasting, and the Islamic laws which govern the practices of fasting.

Important Reading Sources on the Blessed Month of Ramadan and Fasting:

The Right of Fasting chapter in the book entitled A Divine Perspective on Rights discusses the Imam Ali ibn Husain(AS)’s discourse on fasting. The books give a very excellent explanation of the Imam(AS)’s advice on the fasting. It’s short must read for anyone who wants to have a deeper understanding of the fasting.

Laws and Practices: What is the Fast of the Month of Ramadan is a brief text on the significance of fasting in the month of Ramadan.

Although all acts of worship that are done out of sincerity attract God’s mercy, fasting holds a special place in attaining it. Fasting not only is practiced by Muslims, but the worshippers of previous religions also practiced it. The doors of mercy are opened during the month of fasting, or the Month of Ramadan. To know more on how does fasting brings God’s mercy, read God’s Mercy through Fasting

In The Merits of Fasting and the Month of Ramadan the author, Mohammad Ali Shomali, fasting, elaborates on the concept of divine banquet and refers to some of the bounties of Allah SWT in the month of Ramadan and for those who fast.

Understanding the practical laws for fasting according to our followed Marjah is very important. The following is a chapter on Fasting (Part I of II) according to the Risalah of Ayatullah Ali al-Husayni Al-Sistani. It’s important for us to read the laws regarding the fasting so that our fasting is free from the defects of sins and ignorance.

If you want to know what different schools of thoughts in Muslims fasting, read Fasting according to the Five Schools of Islamic Law by Allamah Muhammad Jawad Maghniyyah

Ramadan: The Spring of Souls is Here The short discusses that how the blessed month revives our souls.

Ramadan: A Social Equalizer presents empathy we should have towards other human beings. The holy month of Ramadan has countless blessings in it. One of the blessings of this holy month is compassion towards the other fellow humans. Our emotions and feelings of sympathy are directly related to our actual experiences. We cannot feel the gnawing, agony, and suffering of a sick person until we have undergone the same ailment. When we suffer a pain of sickness, we better understand and feel empathy of the other suffering ones.

This one is especially for kids and young people for enhancing their knowledge on the month of Ramadan. So share Understanding the Month of Glory Lessons on the Month of Ramadhan with children and youth in your family and friends.

Duas and Recommended Acts of Worship in the Month of Ramadan:

The Supplications for the Month of Ramadhan is a useful resource for accessing the Arabic text, English translations, and audio recordings of supplications recited in Ramadhan, including Du’a Iftitah, the A’amal of Laylatul Qadr, and sermon of the Prophet (s) welcoming the month of Ramadhan (Ramadan).

Du’a on sighting the new moon of Ramadhan

Du’as for the nights of Ramadhan

Laylatul Qadr, the Night of Power

Supplications for the last ten Nights of the holy month

Du’as for each day of Ramadhan

Du’a for Sahar (Dawn)

Reflections on the Supplication of Abi Hamzah al-Thumali

Dua’a Abu Hamza Thumali

Other Duas for Sahar

Other Important Duas:

Dua’a Jawshan Al Kabir

Dua’a Jaushan E Sagheer

Dua’a E Mujeer

Dua’a Kumayl

Imam Ali ibn Husain(AS)’s Supplication for the Coming of the Month of Ramadan

Imam Ali ibn Husain(AS)’s Supplication on Noble Moral Traits (Makarimul Akhlaq) Acts Pleasing to God

If you need to access a great source of Islamic spirituality, a source of peace and tranquility, a source for content heart, a source for nearness with Our Creator Lord, read supplications from Al-Sahifa Al-Kamilah Al-Sajjadiya , a collection of spirituality and peace emanating supplications from Imam Ali ibn Husain, Imam Sajjad(AS)

May Allah the Lord of mercy and grace accept our acts of worship and supplications performed in this blessed month and inspire us with goodness, and keep us away from evil, and fortify our faith, and make our feet steadfast on His path, and bestow on us the success of Here and Hereafter!

We request you to remember Ahul Bayt Digital Islamic Library Project Team in your prayers in the solitary moments of the dark night when you stand to pray to Your Lord!

The post The Ways of Servitude: Ramadan Kareem Guide appeared first on Al-Islam.org Blog.

The Hope Amidst Engulfing Darkness

Wed, 05/10/2017 - 10:28

In the name of Allah the most Merciful Beneficent

We are living an age when we are besieged with all sorts of calamities, the calamity of injustice, the calamity of corruption, the calamity of hopelessness, the calamity of misguidance, the calamity of going astray , the calamity of falling in sin, the calamity of getting lost in the darkness of disbelief, the calamity of ever increasing gap between haves and have-nots, the calamity of constant damage to the ecological system, the calamity of widening economic and social inequalities, the calamity of shortage of food and water, the calamity of  failing health and increasing diseases, the calamity of  lack of education for billions and so on.

The international organizations working in the realm of conflict resolutions and finding solutions organize global conferences and thought munching sessions to come with solutions. The best minds from among the top academics, social scientists, and thinkers of the present world assemble there and spend a lot of time in reaching the solutions for the insurmountable problems being encountered by the human race.

But despite all the untiring efforts none of the problems really shows the sign of let up. The social unrest is increasing all over the world. The gap between the incomes of poor and rich is widening more rapidly. The economic inequality and disparity in resource allocations are increasingly more leaning in the favour of mighty and powerful.

The traits of moral degradation and ethical decadence have baffled moral teachers and preachers but they are helpless in checking this demise.

Are we really doomed? Is there no real way out? Has Allah Who has created the entire creation in the best form left His best creation on his own?

No. Allah has not left us on our own. Allah has created a system of leadership-  divinely appointed leaders who are there to guide and lead the world out of crushing problems.

The Imam of this age, Imam al-Mahdi(AJFS) is our hope amidst the engulfing darkness of injustice and misguidance. The Imam is there to guide. If we cannot find him it is not because he is turned away from us but because we have turned away from him. The veils of sins and extreme indulgence in worldly affairs have made us not notice his presence.

We need to cleanse our eyes and hearts to see and feel his presence. We need to increase our yearning for him. We do not have enough longing for his reappearance. The longing mandates making the platform ready for his return and establishment of his just rule. The platform for his reappearance cannot be laid until we understand our responsibilities and duties at the time of his occultation.

Let’s make a small effort to understand our responsibilities as followers of Imam al-Mahdi(AJFS) during the period of occultation through the reading of some good text resources on this topic:

The Last Luminary and Ways to Delve Into the Light “This work authored by Sayyid Ridha Husayni Mutlaq, presents ninety-nine rights and responsibilities which the true believers have to the Living Imam. The author demonstrates that the best way which one can fulfill such responsibilities is through purification of the soul and in addition, a spiritual change must take place within each person and we must seek to maintain closeness to Allah.”

Manner of Awaiting “..is a small collection of people’s responsibilities which are gathered to remind us of our duties while waiting for the reappearance of the Hidden Imam, Imam al-Hujja, al-Qa’im, Imam Mahdi (aj)”

The Waiting Chapter in Universal Government of the Mahdi discusses the definition, levels, philosophy and other aspects of waiting.

Preparing the Shi‘a for the Age of Occultation Part 1 and Preparing the Shi’a for the Age of Occultation Part 2  are great resources for understanding the preparations done right by the holy Prophet(S) and Imams(AS). This is a comprehensive reading on the issue of preparing Muslims for the occultation of Imam al-Mahdi(AJFS).

Another reading on a Muslim’s responsibilities is Duties and Responsibilities section in the book “Imam Mahdi (a.t.f.s.): The Spring of Life”

May Allah make us worthy of joining of Imam al-Mahdi (AJFS) when he reappears and include us among his followers and supporters, and provide us salvation through him!

The post The Hope Amidst Engulfing Darkness appeared first on Al-Islam.org Blog.

The Lamp of Guidance, the Ark of Salvation

Sun, 04/30/2017 - 02:17

“Husain(AS) is the lamp of guidance and the ark of salvation”.

This is a statement of holy Prophet(S) about Imam Husain(AS). Guidance is something more related to the affairs in this worldly life. We require guidance to recognise the truth, or to find the way, or to save ourselves from falling into the pit of sins. Without guidance, the life in this world cannot be lived properly. Guidance is the cornerstone of fruitful life.

Salvation is related to success in the Hereafter. Without salvation in the Hereafter the life of this world is in loss. If somebody fails to achieve salvation in the Hereafter, all his efforts in this world’s life have gone in vain, and loss is the sum total of such a person’s life.

But the salvation cannot be achieved until we have been properly guided and have led our lives in harmony with the virtuous guidance. The guidance and salvation are connected. A misguided person cannot reach salvation, and the one who has reached salvation must have been rightly guided.

The glorious and august personality of Imam Husain(AS) provides the solution to the both problems. He is a lamp of guidance in this world’s life, and the ark of salvation in the Hereafter. The lamp shows the path to others and without the lamp knowing and leading one’s life on the right path is almost impossible. The ark of salvation saves from falling in the abyss of hell. Those who have embarked this ark will definitely be saved.

The life of Imam al Husain(AS) was immersed in the love of Allah. Each action of his life is a testimony to this fact. Holy Prophet(S) introduced Imam al Husain (and also Imam al Hasan(AS) on many occasions and he proclaimed to the Muslims to love both of them : “O Allah I love both of them. Therefore love them and love whoever loves them. Whoever loves al-Hasan and al-Husain is one whom I love. Whomever I love, Allah loves, and whomever Allah loves, He will cause to enter Heaven. Whoever hates them, I hate and Allah hates, He will cause to enter the fire. These two sons of mine are two plants of sweet basil(to sweeten) the world” (as quoted in Kitab al-Irshad, by Shaykh al Mufid).

In other sayings attributed to holy Prophet(S) about the virtues and greatness of Imam Husain(AS) , he(S) says :

“Husayn is from me and I am from Husayn. Everyone who likes Husayn is loved by Allah. Husayn is a sibt (son of daughter) of my sibts”

In another one he says:

“Everyone who wants to see the most beloved person in the heavens and the earth should look at Husayn”.

Ayatullah Ibrahim Amini in his book Imamat and the Imams has quoted more narrations on the greatness of Imam Husain(AS).

Another good analytical discussion on one of the manifest attributes of Imam al Husain(AS) is the Comparison between Imam al-Husayn’s (‘a) Path and That of Other Imams (‘a) done by Martyr Ayatullah Murtuza Mutahiri. It’s an interesting discussion which provides answers to many questions.

Reading this work can clear some of our doubts on the difference of approach of Imam al Husain(AS) vis-a-vis other Imams(AS). This clearing of doubts is very important in correctly receiving the light from the Lamp of Guidance.

May Allah purify ourselves and make us receive guidance from Imam al Husain(AS), and so that we could be among the ones who will embark the Ark of Salvation!

The post The Lamp of Guidance, the Ark of Salvation appeared first on Al-Islam.org Blog.

Do we know Ameerul Momeneen (AS) ?

Tue, 04/11/2017 - 00:48

The blessed day of birth of Ameerul Momeneen Ali ibn Abi Talib(AS) has dawned again in our life. This is the day when the world received the successor of holy Prophet(S) which ensured that the religion will be saved and Ummah guided after the holy Prophet(S) is no more present among the Muslims.

Imam Ali(AS) is combined with truth in such a way that both cannot be separated from each other. The path of Ali(AS) is the path of truth and every action of Imam Ali(AS) manifests an aspect of truth. To follow the truth and to stay steadfast on the path of truth is obligatory for all Muslims. But to be able to follow the truth, one must be fully aware of the truth. And this is the stage where many go astray as the realization and understanding of truth is not an easy task. But it becomes easy when we know someone whose life is an embodiment of truth and there is not a slight deviation from this in his life.

If we look at the life, actions, speeches, sermons, and sayings of such a person we can definitely know the truth. Others pass their generations in search of such an ideal role model, such a perfect human, a specimen of the best a man can achieve, a guide who never fails to guide, an embodiment of truth and justice that truth is recognized by his actions and justice is so much engraved in his subconscious that he is not ready to deprive an insect of a part of straw in lieu of the all treasures of all worlds.

Others may wonder forever to find him. But we know his name. We know who is he. He is Ali ibn Abi Talib(AS) the successor of last Prophet(S) of God. But do we know more about him except his name? Do we spend a little of our time to come closer to him? Do we give him that much importance in our life that we could spend few minutes of our day in knowing who Ali(AS) is? Ali(AS) who is the embodiment of truth and justice in the most perfect sense, those who claim to accept him as Ameerul Momeneen do not expend a little of their time to know his thoughts and emotions. What made Ali(AS) cry? What made him happy? What made him angry? How he looks at us as his shia? Do we try to delve into the deeper side his heart?

We must utilize this blessed occasion to know Imam Ali(AS) through his own words. We must know Ali(AS) through the statements he made, and mesmerizing sermons he delivered, we must know Ali(AS) through Nahjul Balagha. Let’s take a pledge to increase our understanding of the Ameerul Momeneen (AS). We can do with the help of following text resources.

Nahjul Balagha Part 1, The Sermons is the great source for the collection of Imam Ali(AS)’s sermons. You want to know what he wants us to listen? Read his sermons.

Nahjul Balagha Part 2, Letters and Sayings read his letters and sayings to know how he used to administer justice and perform governance matters and guide his followers.

Selection from Glimpses of the Nahj al-Balaghah Read this great writing of Ayatullah Murtadha Mutahhari to know how great scholars understand the greatness of Nahjul Balagha.

Lessons from the Nahjul Balaghah read this book by Ayatullah Sayyid Ali Khamenei which is “a precious book presented to the world of Islam as a brief introduction to the vast phenomenon of Prophethood as it appears in the Nahjul Balaghah of the Commander of the Faithful, ‘Ali, peace be upon him. ‘ ”

All of us desire success. The hope of success is driving force behind our actions. Read What is True Success? Excerpts from Peak of Eloquence (Nahjul Balagha) to understand success from Imam Ali (AS)’s viewpoint.

When the world has reached the conclusion that without justice there can be no durable governance, without justice there can be no peace, without justice there can be no prosperity, read Imam Ali(AS)’s sermons, statements, and letters on justice. Read how justice was identity of his rule as a caliph whose rule was stretched over a vast area from parts of India in East to the North Africa touching boundaries of Europe in West, The Emphasis on Justice in Nahjul Balaghah

We can read the following writings on specific topics from or about Nahjul Balagha:

A Perspective of Imamat in Nahjul Balaghah

Preface of Nahjul Balaghah by Allamah Ali Naqi Naqvi

The Commentaries on Nahjul Balaghah by Dr. Sayyid Wahid Akhtar

Commentary on Sermon 80 of Nahjul Balaghah by Ayatullah Naser Makarem Shirazi

The Concept of Freedom in the Nahjul Balaghah by Dr. Sayyid Wahid Akhtar

Causes of Enmity with Imam Ali (as) in the Light of Nahjul Balaghah by Dr. Sayyid Wahid Akhtar

Misconceptions about Nahjul Balaghah by Dr. Sayyid Wahid Akhtar

Sources of Nahjul Balaghah by Dr. Sayyid Wahid Akhtar

The Authenticity of Nahjul Balaghah by Sayyid Fadhil Milani

and finally for kids Nahj al-Balaghah for Children

The post Do we know Ameerul Momeneen (AS) ? appeared first on Al-Islam.org Blog.

7 Books to Deepen Your Knowledge on Fatimah al-Zahra (S) – The Role Model For All Women

Fri, 03/03/2017 - 23:01

In the name of Allah the most Merciful Beneficent

The life of Lady Fatimah Zahra (S) is beyond comprehension for a common person. Islam has thirteen major role models for men, but she is alone as role model for all women.

The lofty status of the holy lady can not be fully understood. In such a short life she fulfilled the purpose and mission of her creation. She left behind a posterity of infallible Imams(AS). Her blessed existence is a source of light till the day of Judgment.

As Lady Fatimah Zahra(S) is our role model, therefore it is incumbent upon us to gather as much knowledge about different aspects of her life as possible. We must study all aspects of her life so that we can receive light and guidance from her pure and holy life, and so that we could be able to lead a successful life as desired by Allah(SWT) for His servants.

The book Fatima az-Zahra’, The World’s most outstanding Lady by Ayatullah Naser Makarem Shirazi discusses “the historical proceedings of the Prophet’s (s) daughter Fatima Az Zahra, from childhood until marriage. Then an account of the sufferings and hardships after the martyrdom of the Holy Prophet (s), till the moment of her martyrdom.” It’s a good beginner level introduction of holy lady’s life.

Another short write up entitled The Third Infallible, Hadhrat Fatimah al-Zahra on the biography of the august lady Fatimah al-Zahra(S) is a beneficial reading for a quick reader.

The most relevant and most important topics of study on the lady of Heavens comprise of her being role model for all Muslims. Fatimah al-Ma`sumah (as): a role model for men and women provides a good resource for study on different dimensions of life in which she is a great role model. The study of this book will result in increased knowledge on her life’s practical aspects and will , inshaAllah , guide the readers to adapt her way of life as the model.

Along with the above mentioned book The Nurturing Role of Lady Fatimah(S) is another good reading on the same topic. This article “addresses Lady Fatimah’s conduct and method of upbringing, seeks to present the life of Lady Fatimah as the applied form of Islam. She was an illustration of a perfect woman, or rather, a perfect human being within the Islamic faith”

Besides the above mentioned readings, The Life of Fatimah Az- Zahra’, The Principal of all Women: Study and Analysis  studies the life events of the glorious lady. The book discusses that how  “The messenger of Allah (S) put Fatimah (s.a.) in the highest place and most honorable position in Islam to be the highest example for the women of his nation, not in chastity and abstinence only, but to play her role in the inclusive reformation if his umma (nation) sould go astray.

And indeed, the principal of women (s.a.) undertook her positive role when the umma deviated from its spiritual and worldly leadership that the Prophet (S) had assigned to be in the people of his house who were the centers of knowledge and intellect in the world of Islam. She, peace be on her, set stably, bravely, and loftily against the rulers and invited them to straightness and to the very principles of Islam”

The Virtues of Sayyidah Fatimah (sa) which is a “a collection of hadith by a Sunni Scholar on the virtues and status of Sayyidah Fatimah (s), the blessed daughter of Prophet Muhammad (saw).”

And finally the House of Sorrows, The life of Sayyidah Fatimah al-Zahra and her grief sheds light on the last days of her life. It brings forth the pain and agony which the holy Lady had to suffer after the death of her blessed father holy prophet(S). It is the first ever book in English to detail the last six months of the life of the only daughter of Prophet Muhammad, Fatimah az-Zahra.

This book focuses on the status of Lady Fatimah from Qur’anic verses and traditions and delves into the events immediately preceding the death of Prophet Muhammad. There are a number of events discussed in this text such as saqifah, the taking of Fadak, and then, in vivid words, goes through the last months of her life. Be prepared to shed tears as you read the heart-wrenching events of what happened to az-Zahra as recounted and narrated in the major books of the Ahlul Sunnah and the Shi’a.

May Allah make us receive light and guidance from her pious and successful life so that we could also achieve success in the both worlds!

The post 7 Books to Deepen Your Knowledge on Fatimah al-Zahra (S) – The Role Model For All Women appeared first on Al-Islam.org Blog.

Discover the Meaning & Significance of Eid

Mon, 07/04/2016 - 08:57

The Arabic term Eid traces its etymology to the word ‘awd’ which actually means ‘to return’. Therefore  the day of Eid  is actually the day of ‘return’ towards the Beneficent Lord.

The man is created with a pure fitra which guides him always towards His Creator Sustainer Lord. But man covers his fitra on which he is created, with the dust of sins and heedlessness and thus becomes estranged with His most Loving Lord.

The month long worship and purification in the blessed month of Ramadan removes and clears the hardened layers of sins and reconnects the man with His Creator Lord. So on the day of Eid, that is the day of return, man returns towards His Lord with purified soul.

It’s a day of celebration because we receive the rewards after a month long worship and rigorous spiritual training, and it’s also the day of thankfulness to the Lord because He opened the doors of mercy and forgiveness through the blessed month of Ramadan.

The day of Eid is not a day when we return to our old life of thanklessness and heedlessness, but rather it’s a day when we go ahead in life with renewed spiritual energy and determination.

We should remember Allah this day more frequently and recite the supplication of Imam Sajjad(AS) in Sahifa Sajjadia on the day of Eid, and this dua from Mikyalul Makarim Fee Fawaaid ad-Duaa Lil Qai’m. We offer special prayers on the occasions of Eid to express our gratitude to Allah subhanhu wa taa’la, in this wake The book by Yasin al-Jibouri in this sake the is a useful one which discusses the details related to the special Eid prayers.

The day of Eid also mandates for us to pay zakat al Fitra. The FAQs on Zakat al-Fitra  answers different questions related to this issue. Reading the resource can be beneficial for those who have questions in their minds about the zakat al-fitra.

The book Fast by Sayyid Saeed Akhtar Rizvi explains different aspects of the Eid al Fitr. It can be an interesting reading for the uninitiated, and the thoughts on Eid delves a little deeper briefly into the question of why do we celebrate Eid.

I end my brief post with the humble request that when you stand to pray on the day of Eid , remember all believers including Ahlul Bayt DILP team in your prayers!

 

 

 

 

6 Resources to Help You Enjoy Spiritual Benefits in the Most Important Night of the Year (Laylatul Qadr)

Wed, 06/22/2016 - 09:44

The Laylatul Qadr is the most significant and glorious night of the year.

The night is replete with blessings and “rahmah”. Its brilliance and shine surpasses all other nights of the year. The night has got its high status confirmed by none less than holy Quran itself. In honor and glory it is weightier than a thousand months.

The acts of worship and good deeds performed in this blessed night with sincerity of intentions for the Allah subhanahu wa talaa are more rewarding than they are in any other night. The following tradition provided in the book “Adab as-Salat: The Disciplines of the Prayer ” by Ayatullah Sayyid Imam Ruhallah Musawi Khomeini,  from the holy Prophet(S) makes the significance of the night clear:

“Moses said: ‘O Allah! I desire your proximity.’ Allah said: ‘My proximity is for the one who keeps awake on ‘the night of Qadr.’ He said: ‘O Allah! I wish for your mercy.’ Allah said: ‘My mercy is for the one who shows mercy to the poor on `the night of Qadr.’ He said: ‘O Allah! I want to cross the sirāt [the (right) path]’. He said: ‘That is for the one who gives out a sadaqah (charity) on ‘the night of Qadr.’ He said: ‘O Allah.’ I want of the trees and fruits of Paradise.’ Allah said: ‘They are for the one who glorifies (Me) on ‘the night of Qadr.’ He said: ‘I want to be delivered.’ Allah said: ‘From the Fire?’ ‘Yes,’ he said. Allah said: ‘It is for the one who asks forgiveness on ‘the night of Qadr.’ He said: ‘O Allah! I ask for your pleasure.’ Allah said: ‘I would be pleased with the one who performs two rak’ahs (bow) of salāt (prayer) on ‘the night of Qadr.’”

The book “Spiritual Journey of the Mystics (Suluk al-Arifan)“  by Ayatullah Mirza Jawad Tabrizi, quotes the following tradition from the holy Prophet(S) on the rewards for acts of worship this night :

“On the night of power, the gates of heaven are opened. There is no servant who offers prayer in this night, but Allah (swt) for every prostration stores a tree in the Paradise–the tree whose branches and shade is so vast that if a rider travels for one hundred years through its shade, he would not be able to cross it; for every ra’kat (bow) would build a home for him in paradise–the home decorated and built by pearls, topaz, and rubies; for every verse recited, a crown from the crowns of paradise; for every praise (tasbeeh),a bird from the birds of paradise; for every sitting, a rank from the ranks of paradise. For every witnessing (tashahud), a chamber from the chambers of paradise, and for every salutation, a robe from the robes of paradise would be bestowed upon him by Allah. And at the breaking of the dawn, companions, youthful and sympathetic, houris of paradise–pure and decorated, obedient and well uniformed, horses–most obedient and swift, flowers, greenery, and good smells, running elegant fountain streams, and many other bounties which make the soul pleased and eyes to shine, would also be bestowed upon him by Allah.”

The blessed night is worth knowing more and more about it. The more we know about this gracious night , the more we can reap good results out of it. Fast of the Month of Ramadhan: Philosophy and Ahkam unravels the different details about  the blessed night.

As the dua is a weapon of a believer, the recommended supplications and acts of worship must be adhered to get maximum spiritual rewards. Finally the lecture by Dr. Murtadha Alidina takes us further into the depths of understanding the night’s glory.

Let’s pray to Al Mighty Allah that may in this night of power and glory and the night of determination of destinies , He makes us spend our time in supplications and prayers, and may He make us do the good deeds which cause the bestowal of His mercy and forgiveness and removal of His wrath and punishment!

Support Al-Islam.org through the Amazon Smile Program

Fri, 05/27/2016 - 03:42

We are pleased to announce that you can also support us financially through the Amazon Smile program, at no cost to you. Here are the details:

1. How do we do it ?

Through Amazon Smile program, a simple and automatic way for you to support Al-Islam.org every time you shop, at no cost to you.

When you shop at smile.amazon.com, you’ll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as Amazon.com, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to your favorite charitable organization. You can choose from nearly one million organizations to support.

2. How do I register for the Smile Program ?

We refer you to https://smile.amazon.com/ch/41-1971730 to register

3. How much is my Contribution to Amazon Smile Al-Islam.org project ?

The AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the purchase price from your eligible AmazonSmile purchases

3. I have more questions related to the Program

Please refer to this Web page for more detailed information http://smile.amazon.com/gp/aw/ch/about

 

Ramadan Mubarak!

Wed, 06/17/2015 - 00:28

Dear Al-Islam.org readers,

Salaam Alaikum!

As we get closer to the holy month of Ramadan, we would like to encourage our visitors to explore our resources to prepare for this beautiful month and make the most of it! This blog post will share select resources you can glimpse through from our site:

Gaining closeness to the Quran

The Al-Quran Project is a beneficial tool to get a basic English translation and commentary on Quranic verses.

We also host volumes of one of the greatest commentaries of the time – Tafsir al-Mizan authored by Allama Muhammad Husayn Tabatabai as well as many other Quranic commentaries!

Increasing Spirituality

A contemporary scholar and expert in Irfan/spirituality, Ayatullah Hasanzadeh Amuli has said, “An Irfan-less community is tantamount to a lifeless corpse”.

This is a month is described as the ‘divine banquet’ – an important month to work on our spirituality. A book on spirituality related to fasting in particular is “Spiritual Journey of the Mystics (Suluk al-Arifan)“.

There are many supplications we read during this month; understanding the depth and meaning behind those supplications is a great tool to increase our spirituality. A book in this regard is one by Shaykh Muhammad Khalfan that focusses on the inner meanings behind the popular du’a of the holy Prophet (saw) that we read after every Salaat in the month of Ramadan: Manifestations of the All-Merciful.

The Month of the Ummah

Let’s strive to develop a greater understanding of the Ummah through studying the present situation as well as history. The last Friday of this month, also known as “Yawm al-Quds” is a day to work towards the cause of the oppressed and become their voice – let’s make sure to participate in it in best way possible.

May we acquire the best benefits possible from this spiritual month!

Aalim network archives and media files

Sun, 01/05/2014 - 10:04

Salam alaikum,

Some of you rightly noticed that when we moved over to the new site, the Aalim network archives (a series of question and answers and many lectures under the multimedia section went missing.

We have now brought back both of them.

The Aalim Network, can be accessed via this url http://www.al-islam.org/link/aalim-network-archives

 

As for the multimedia files, they are now accessible if you have a direct link to them. for eg. http://www.al-islam.org/gallery/audio/hawza/aqaid/babhadi/016.mp3 . However, we are still working on adding a section in the new portal that will allow easy browsing/searching for the multimedia files.

Keep looking at this space for more updates.

Search Experience

Tue, 12/31/2013 - 11:17

Salam alaikum,

We’ve recently made some efforts to improve the search experience on Al-Islam.org

This includes support for

  • Exact text matches
  • Fuzzy matches
  • Some UI improvements
  • Ability to search with Google
  • New ability to search for organizations

However, we realize that there is more work to be done to make the search better.

Any feedback/suggestions are welcome

Wassalaam

Mobile Compatibility

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 14:06

Salam alaikum,

We’ve noticed that some of our users are experiencing difficulties in viewing books/articles on their mobiles.Rest assured, we’ve taken notice and are working towards a solution at the earliest.

Meanwhile, it would be good if you can leave a comment letting us know which mobile browsers are facing this problem.

Thanks

Try out the Beta Version of the new Al-Islam.org site

Sun, 05/26/2013 - 11:03

During the last 2 years DILP team has been working hard on developing the new Al-Islam.org 2.0 website.

We’re excited to announce that the beta version of the new website has gone live. You can take it for a test drive by visiting http://beta.al-islam.org

Here are some features to look out for in the new version:

A New Interface

The new interface makes it easy to find the resources you’re looking for.

New Al-Islam.org Interface

Join & Collaborate

Register with the site and you can collaborate with the team in improving the text by correcting errors in spellings or references.

Join & Collaborate

Search the site with Auto Suggest

While searching, the search bar will suggest important phrases.

Search & Autosuggest feature

Export to Print or PDF format

Export any book or page in Print or PDF format to read offline

Print / PDF Export

Share your feedback on a resource

Share your comments

Browse resource by topic, author, translator or publisher

Browse resources by Author

Take the beta site for a test drive at http://beta.al-islam.org and share with us your feedback.

 

Featured Website: Duas.org

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 03:37

Remember Me, I will remember you [2:152]

Supplications in Islam while being a means of communication with our Creator are not only significant for fulfillment of needs and desires but also to enhance one’s spiritual nature towards Allah (SWT).

Inspired by Quran and hadith that lay great emphasis on integrating supplications to the Almighty in one’s life, the Duas.org team has made an earnest effort to provide easiest access to the enormous treasure of supplications from our holy infallibles (as)! The supplications are presented from very reliable sources such as books from great scholars as well as Sahifas of the infallibles (as) themselves; namely – Sahifa al-Alaviya, Sahifa al-Zahra, Sahifa al-Kamila, Sahifa al-Razaviya, Sahifa al-Mahdi and duas from our tenth and eleventh Imams (as).

Every supplication on the site is made available in Arabic language along with English transliteration and translation. Along with the basic html version for each dua, there are PowerPoint slides, PDF and MP3 versions made available for every supplication – thus making it very convenient for e-readers and Amazon Kindle users to recite supplications at their own ease.

Not only does the site provide access to supplications but also informs about recommended deeds (amaal) during important days of the Islamic year. Supplications for everyday life, after every prayer and specific purposes such as, marriage, studying, cure for health problems etc. are also available on the site.

Informative articles and books on various important subjects are also present for readers to improve their knowledge and understanding about a particular event or topic. For instance, if the supplications for seeking Istikhara are mentioned the reader is simultaneously suggested to read a book on the detailed concept of Istikhara and its relevance to one’s situation. Similarly there are several books related to the topics of marriage, death and various other issues.

The Duas.org apps for Android, iPhone/iPad and other smartphone users are free to download.

                              

One can merely thank the dedicated team at Duas.org for providing such wonderful and easy access to the precious gems from the holy infallibles (as)! As you enjoy reciting supplications from their site, please remember the team in your prayers so that Allah gives them best in this life and the next.

 

Featured Organization: Al-Itrah Foundation

Sun, 07/10/2011 - 01:37

The Ahlul Bayt DILP presents Islamic resources on Al-Islam.org in more than 25 languages. One of these languages is Kiswahili, which serves as a second language in several parts of East African countries. Al-Islam.org hosts more than 250 resources in Kiswahili, and this was largely made possible by the efforts of Al-Itrah foundation


Al-Itrah Foundation is an Islamic organization that was established in October of 2002. Although the organization is based in Dares-Salaam – Tanzania, its activities are definitely a great inspiration to Muslims worldwide. Below is a brief interview with the founder of Al-Itrah Foundation, Br. Mahboob Somji, who has enlightened us about Al-Itrah and its activities.

1) What primary goals does Al-Itrah seek to achieve?

Our primary goals are:

  • To promote divine values.
  • To spread awareness about the Holy Prophet (saw) and his progeny to Muslims as well as non Muslims.
  • To bridge the gap between Muslims and non Muslims.

2) Please enlighten us about Al-Itrah’s main activities that are currently running.

The main activities of Al-Itrah Foundation are:

  • Translating Arabic & English resources into Kiswahili language; we have so far translated more than 200 books into Kiswahili and recently translated the first Shia Tafsir of the holy Quran into Kiswahili.
  • Educating and promoting Islamic awareness through the media and specifically through Al-Itrah’s own TV channel: IBN Television
  • Spreading awareness through Maarifa Radio channel.
  • Running a full time library in the local area in the city which is known as Maktaba Mustaqeem.

3) Please tell us something about IBN television. What programs are broadcasted through it?

IBN television is the first Islamic channel in Tanzania that broadcasts in three different languages, mainly Kiswahili and English. Various kinds of programs are broadcasted through it, such as, talk shows, Islamic lectures from renowned scholars, highlights on the current political situation of the Ummah, interfaith programs and various other programs related to social life, health and general lifestyle.

4) Although Al-Itrah is based in Tanzania, does it also send out books throughout the world or does it only seek to serve specific areas/regions?

Yes we do ship out books that are ordered through our website (http://alitrah.info/) around the world, however it also depends on the number of orders.

In addition, we distribute free books in Kiswahili to more than 50 centers in East Africa. Only sample copies are sent to Qum for the authors to have copies for their archives. We do send copies of all our publications to National Libraries in Tanzania and Universities

5) What are some of Al-Itrah’s future plans?

Future plans are to expand the media resources (ie IBNTV and Maarifa Radio) to reach the entire country of Tanzania so that everyone has access to IBNTV. We also intend to start Kiswahili Newspaper known as Kipambanuzi which will be published on a regular basis once we have successfully stabilized the ongoing projects such as IBN television and Maarifa radio.

6) What obstacles or major challenging aspects (if any) does this work entail? Please feel free to share your experiences.

Major challenge for us is to find human resources in the field, but Alhamdulillah, whatever progress you see is due to Allah’s mercy, and we hope this to continue inshaAllah. Another setback is that we have not publicized this institution to outside world and due to this reason we lack financial support from the donors. InshaAllah as we grow further, and along with the help of our dedicated board members, we will start making improvements in these areas.

9) A message that you would like to share with the Ahlulbayt DILP team?

DILP team is doing wonderful job mashaAllah! I don’t have any words for their commitments and dedication, they are doing a superb job. My only wish is that if we can develop same Al-Islam.org with all the Swahili resources so that in the long run when internet is easily accessible to every individual in this part of the East African population, these will be very helpful and it will promote the True Faith in this area easily. Let’s hope this can be achieved.

10) A message that you would like to give to our readers at Al-Islam.org?

Our message is that all our resources globally should be working in developing the True Islamic System based on Wilayah in all the areas, be it political, social, economical, educational, cultural, spiritual etc. Allah (swt) has given us time, resources and opportunity and I feel we should take full advantage of such opportunities and continue developing ourselves and our communities in all areas.

My other humble advice is that all those working for Al-Islam.org take some time out to read the articles and resources available on the Mashrabe Naab website. I hope that we will continue education ourselves to learn about the true teachings of Islam as taught by the Holy Prophet (s) and his progeny (as).

Featured Website: IslamicInsights.com

Tue, 05/03/2011 - 08:31

The Al-Islam.org Blog will be featuring Islamic websites that are carrying useful content for its visitors. Islamic Insights is the first website being featured in this series of blog posts. Please contact us to suggest websites to be featured.

History

Islamic Insights was founded by a group of young active Muslims in February of 2007 out of concern that there was a need for a holistic news and lifestyle publication inspired by the ideals of the Quran and Ahlul-Bayt. Four years later, Islamic Insights now receives 800 unique visits per day and has a team of writers located all over the world representing the Muslim community. The Islamic Insights team features professional writers and journalists, university students, professionals from diverse fields, and esteemed scholars who hold many years of seminary education.

Originally, Islamic Insights was published in print locally in the city of Dearborn Michigan, home to one of the largest Muslim populations in the West. Eventually, thousands of copies would be delivered across North America. In September 2007, the management of Islamic Insights decided to switch to publishing online only due in order to achieve cost minimization. Today, thousands of readers connect with Islamic Insights through www.Islamicinsights.com and the Islamic Insights group and fanpage on Facebook which are 5000 members strong and growing everyday.

Objectives

The goals and aims of Islamic Insights are unique and have been received warmly by Muslims and non-Muslims alike:

  • To create a publication that portrays true Islamic values and principles in the face of wide spread misconceptions and misunderstandings in the media, political, and local spheres.
  • To allow Muslims in the West and Muslim countries a forum to find correct, referenced, comprehensive, and modern answers to concerns, issues, and questions they may have.
  • Provide for scholars, religious authorities, and clerics an avenue to publish their work, rulings, and articles so that the Muslim community is exposed to the works of a variety of highly qualified scholars.
  • To represent the ideals, biographies, morals, and esteemed virtues of the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him and his household), Lady Fatima, Imam Ali and the Eleven Imams peace be upon them all.
  • To cater to the needs of Muslims with varying age ranges through diverse categories such as ReligionClergy CornerCommunity Affairs, Student Life, SportsBook and Movie Reviews in addition to others.
  • To prepare Muslims for the return of the Awaited Imam (May Allah swt Hasten his advent) by preparing and publishing thorough articles on the Imam, the conditions of his return, and how to improve ourselves.
  • Address the social, political, community, religious, local and national issues facing Muslims.
  • Publish articles and pieces on neglected media stories and international affairs that take place in the Middle East, United States, Africa, and around the world.
  • Allow opportunities for Muslims to become thoroughly informed regarding political, humanitarian, Islamic, social, academic, and community issues at home and at an international level.
Future Plans

The Islamic Insights team works together to achieve these goals with every weekly issue published. As with any organization, the future has many plans, God permitting, that seek to present even more opportunities for growth for Islamic Insights.  Future plans include:

  • An Islamic Insights blog to keep readers informed between weekly issues with updates and important information.
  • Resuming local printing once a month with a compilation of the most relevant and popular articles.
  • Securing more syndication deals in addition to those already held by Islamic Insights in order to further our goals and aims.
Popular Content from Islamic Insights website:

For the past four years, the Islamic Insights team has written a significant number of substantial articles on topics that were pertinent and generally neglected. Below is a collection of only a several of the most popular articles on Islamic Insights

The Imam of Our Time: A Few Common Questions

Desecrating the Signs of God: the Baqi Tragedy

Males and Females – “Just Friends”?

The Ka’ba: What Is It Really?

Understanding Hijab

Followers of the Eloquent Lady

The Truthful One

Are We Self-Sufficient Yet?

The Hijab of Men

Style Watch: In Happiness, In Sadness

Dignity and Meanness

Depression: the Islamic Solution

Why Were All the Prophets Sent to the Middle East?

The Movies We Watch

Hookah: Myth and Reality

Top Media Lies about Iran

Marriage Resumes

 

Colour Mockups: Text Resources

Wed, 11/24/2010 - 09:47

Eid Ghadeer Mubarak to everyone. We are redesigning Al-Islam.org. The following colour mockups show the new design for the Text resources on Al-Islam.org . Take a look at the following link, for a complete overview of the new Al-Islam.org.

Text Title

Text Chapter

Please give us your feedback using the comments section below.

If you’re a Web Designer or Developer and are interested to be a volunteer for DILP to work on Al-Islam 2.0, get in touch with us here and let us know more about yourself & your skills. One of our team members will get in touch with you.

Colour Mockups: Homepage, Category Page, Resource Listing

Tue, 11/16/2010 - 06:49

Salaam Alaikum,

Eid Mubarak to everyone! As part of the efforts towards developing Phase 1 of Al-Islam 2.0, the Ahlul Bayt DILP team is working on a complete re-design of the website. We would like to share with you the following colour Mockups:

Homepage

Category Page

Resource Listing

Please give us your feedback using the comments section below. Inshallah in the next blog post we’ll share colour mockups of the Text Resource. To get an overview of Al-Islam 2.0 and it’s features visit this page.

If you’re a Web Designer or Developer and are interested to be a volunteer for DILP to work on Al-Islam 2.0, get in touch with us here and let us know more about yourself & your skills. One of our team members will get in touch with you.

Al-Islam 2.0 Mockups: Portal

Tue, 09/14/2010 - 23:25

This is the first of a series of blog posts to explain the features of Al-Islam 2.0 using the mockups.  In this post we’ll be explaining the Portal Mockups.  Click on the mockup to zoom into the image & view the annotations.

1. Homepage


The Portal will will server as the home page of Al-Islam.org for an unregistered user.  Registered users’ homepage will be the “Dashboard”.  The purpose of the Portal is to organize the collection of resources on Al-Islam.org, and present it in a way that is easy for the user to reach what the user is looking for.

2. Category Page


The Library category page is accessed from the Homepage.  The above Mockup shows the category page of “History & Biography”. Each of the category pages will be customized to highlight important and popular resources.

3. Resource listing


Listing of resources of a Sub category. The options allows the user to filter the resources by type, preview Table of Contents and view ratings of the resource.
Please share your feedback using the comments section below.