“He is Allah, besides Whom there is no god, the King” (59:23), ain’t it time we all get to know the King? The Arabic word ‘Mulk’ means the ability to dispose of things, for Allah, this includes the ability to dispose […]
Now that we know how Dajjal looks like, where he will appear and how to protect ourselves against his deception, it’s time to learn who will be victims of his deception. Many people think that Dajjal will only deceive non-Muslims, however, this is not true; it’s just that Muslims won’t be the majority of those deceived. Allah SWT said “And fear the turmoil which will certainly not fall only upon a few selected unjust people among you” (8:25), so rather everyone will subjected to Dajjal’s deception!
The prophet SAW said “Between the creation of Adam AS and the onset of the Hour, there is no creation that has more impact than the Dajjal”. So how exactly will Dajjal deceive people so one can be prepared? In one word, piety! Don’t wait until the last moment to obey your Lord, or else, it will be too late! The prophet SAW said “He will have water and fire with him; but his fire is cool water and his water is fire, so do not destroy yourselves” [Muslim].
So how do you expect to differentiate between Dajjal’s water and fire if not with the help of Allah through the grace of insight?! Do not expect Allah to protect you from the trial of Dajjal if you don’t already protect yourself against all that displeases Allah! All those who neglect their prayers, deal in Riba, don’t observe their proper Hijab, are potential followers of Dajjal. Just obey Allah, learn what the prophet SAW taught us about Dajjal and pray for Allah’s protection, “and your Lord does not wrong any one” (18:49)!
Now let’s look at how events will unfold until the death of Dajjal. First off, the Jews will announce that their awaited Messiah has arrived. Whenever this happens, know that instead, Dajjal has appeared! Then “Seventy thousand of the Jews of Isbahan will follow Dajjal, wearing Tayalisahs (Persian shawls)” [Muslim]. Isbahan is in Iran!
The prophet SAW further explains that “There is no part of the land that Dajjal will not enter, except Mecca and Medina.. there are angels in ranks guarding them” [Muslim]. So basically, the safest two cities against the tribulation of Dajjal are Mecca and Medina. Nonetheless, he will try to conquer Medina. The prophet SAW said “Dajjal will come and when he reaches behind (Mount) Uhud, the angels will turn his face towards Sham (Levant), and it is there that he will be destroyed” [Tirmidhi].
Once Dajjal fails to enter Medina and takes his army back towards Syria, our beloved Jesus son of Mary will return to glorify Islam! Let’s hear it in the words of the prophet SAW:
“Allah will send the Messiah, the son of Mary, peace be upon him, who will descend to the white minaret in the east of Damascus. He will be wearing two garments lightly perfumed with saffron, placing his hands on the wings of two angels. When he lowers his head, water will drip, and when he raises it, it will scatter drops like pearls. Every disbeliever, to whom his breath reaches, will die; and his breath will reach as far as he can see. He (Jesus) will pursue him (Dajjal) until he catches him at the gate of Ludd (15 km Southeast of Tel Aviv), and kills him” [Muslim].
Finally, the prophet SAW taught us that “Islam began as something strange and will go back to being strange; so glad tidings to the strangers”, so BE a stranger!
Dajjal or False Messiah is the most severe trial Muslims will ever face since their creation; hence, the importance to learn about it. The Prophet SAW said “Between the creation of Adam AS & the onset of the Hour, there is no creation that has more impact than the Dajjal” [Muslim].
When the prophet SAW saw his companions talking about the Hour, he told them “It will never come until you see ten signs” [Abu Dawud], so what are they? The Major Signs of the Hour as told by the prophet SAW are “Smoke, Dajjal, The Beast, The rising of sun from its place of setting, The descent of Jesus son of Mary AS, Gog and Magog, Three landslides (one in the east, one in the west and one in the Arabian peninsula). And the last of that will be a fire which will emerge from Yemen and drive the people to their place of gathering” [Abu Dawud].
So are there any signs preceding the appearance of Dajjal? Yes, indeed and the prophet SAW even told us what to expect right before Dajjal physically appears before our own eyes. He SAW said”A man will rise as a believer in the morning, and come upon the evening as a disbeliever, until the people are split into 2 camps: the camp of Faith in which there will be no hypocrisy, and the camp of hypocrisy in which there will be no Faith. When that happens, (then) expect the Dajjal on that day or the next” [Abu Dawud].
Now please pay attention to the next set of signs preceding the appearance of Dajjal. The prophet SAW said “Jerusalem will flourish when Yathrib (Medina) is in ruins, and Yathrib (Medina) will be in ruins when the Great War occurs. The Great War will occur when Constantinople is conquered, and Constantinople will be conquered when Dajjal appears” [Abu Dawud]. So first, we should expect a Great War after the fall of Constantinople. Then Medina will be ruined, Jerusalem will flourish, and finally, Dajjal will appear.
The big question now is whether it would be possible for people to recognize him! Are there particular signs? Yes, indeed, the prophet SAW described Dajjal as follows “He (Dajjal) is a young man with curly hair, and his right eye is blind” [Muslim]. He SAW also provided further description when he said “Beware! He is blind in one eye, and your Lord is not so; and there will be written between his eyes Kafir (unbeliever)” [Bukhari].
So is there a way to protect ourselves from Dajjal? The prophet SAW instructs that “Whoever among you sees him, let him recite the opening verses of Surah Al-Kahf over him” [Muslim].
How many verses then are we supposed to recite/memorize? The prophet SAW said “He who memorizes the first ten verses of Surat Al-Kahf will be protected from the trial of the Dajjal. (In another narration, it is the last ten verses of Surat Al-Kahf)” [Muslim]. Therefore, to be on the safe side, better memorize the first and last 10 verses of Surat Al-Kahf.
Where will Dajjal first appear? The prophet SAW said “He will emerge in a place between Al-Sham (Levant) and Iraq, and will spread mischief right and left” [Muslim].
How long will Dajjal stay on earth? The prophet SAW said “Forty days; a day like a year, a day like a month, a day like a week, and the rest of the days like your days” [Muslim].
To be resumed inshaa Allah in part 2…
Some 14 centuries ago flows of immigrants were detected moving from the land of Palestine heading Southeast to a city called Yathreb (Medina nowadays). They all had several things in common; they were all Jews, all religious and when asked why they’re leaving the moderate weather back home in Palestine (let alone the land of their prophets) and relocating in the middle of the hot and humid Arabian desert, they all had the same answer. Basically that the signs stated in their Book (Old Testament) about the last messenger are clearly showing in the universe, and that he’s supposed to migrate to Medina when his people fight him, so they want to be among the first believers.
Back then, no one knew about the race or lineage of this last messenger, but since Jacob, Joseph, Moses and Jesus (peace be upon them all) were all descendants of Issac (peace be upon him), they all assumed that the last one would also be a descendant of Issac.
Several years later, inside a cave located at a mountain in Mecca, an illiterate man from a noble Arab tribe was receiving the first revelation, which started with the word “Read”. Interestingly, the world religion is either derived from the Latin word “Relegere”, which has as one of its meanings read or reread, or from “Relegare”, meaning tie back. That man’s name was Muhammed (peace be upon him) and his message came to restore all previous Divine messages. He asked his followers to believe in One God, in His angels, Books, messengers, Divine Decree and Resurrection Day. He told them that Divine Love is the main reason behind their existence. In his own words, he said “The only reason I have been sent is to perfect good manners” [Bukhari].
His message spread in the speed of light, among rich and poor, old and young, masters and servants. His people indeed fought him, and he indeed fled to Medina, where its people rushed to embrace the new religion. But what about Jews, who were originally there to be among the first believers? Except a few, they all denied him because he was an Arab and especially because he wasn’t a descendant of Issac. Interestingly, he was preaching that “There is no preference of an Arab over a non-Arab, or a non-Arab over an Arab, or a white person over a black one, or a black person over a white one except by piety. In fact, all people are from Adam and Adam is from sand” [Ahmad].
Today, his religion – “Islam” meaning peace and submission to the One God – is embraced by nearly a quarter of the world’s population, and it remains the fastest growing religion in the world. Yet, just like any other faith on earth, some fanatics take it to extremes by distorting its principles and making it look like a terror religion. However, any rational person can clearly tell that the actions of a few cannot sanely be generalized to the peaceful millions.
The Devil (Shaytan) is your enemy, we all know this pretty well, but how many of us know about his tactics to knock us down? The best Shaytan can do is knock you down, but if you’re not fully aware of his tactics, you risk knocking yourself out, for he can’t do it on his own. Shaytan’s “only” aim is “not” to make you sin, but rather to let you “repeat” the sins until you give up on yourself and think you’re hopeless.
Shaytan knows very well that as humans, we would sin anyway, he rather cares to prevent your repentance and let you repeat that very same sin over and over again. How many of us feel so ashamed of themselves after sinning that they don’t dare repent on the spot? BIG MISTAKE! The sooner, the better! Allah has promised us that if we meet Him with sins filling the earth but not associating anything with Him, He would forgive us “everything”!
When Adam AS sinned, Allah knew it wasn’t out of underestimating His Oneness, so He taught him how to turn to Allah in repentance. Seemingly, as Muslims, we sin not because we lost faith, but rather for being deceived by Shaytan and our own souls. Why else do you think Allah is The Forgiver?! It’s when you feel so ashamed of yourself and don’t care to repent that Allah’s names The Avenger and The Afflicter come into play. So please be careful!
If Adam AS hadn’t sinned in the first place, he would’ve been destroyed by his own arrogance; Allah is The Wise. Repentance is a remedy! How many of us do a good deed only to think themselves superior to others? And how many flee in full submission to Allah after a sin?!
One thing for sure, Shaytan has absolutely no influence over you “except” if Allah abandons you. So whenever you sin, repent instantly! And if Allah senses the slightest willingness and seriousness in your repentance, The Sustainer comes into play and you’d conquer Shaytan for you.
Trusting Allah is key to piety, we need it every step of the way, but especially before Ramadan as we prepare for the big reward. Trusting Allah comes in two forms: 1) Trusting that He knows your exact needs and what you don’t need 2) Trusting him in your worship. Also trusting Allah maybe voluntary, as in good times, and it may be involuntary, like when one is inflicted with difficulties and tests. Voluntary trust in Allah is definitely more pleasurable to Allah, so wouldn’t it be better if we flee to Him now before Ramadan and renew our trust in Him SWT?
Trusting Allah means submitting your heart to Him knowing that He’ll never desert you, and submitting your body in worship as he ordered you to.
Trusting Allah means fully relying on Him and on Him “alone”, resting fully assured that no one can harm you in such a state of heart.
Trusting Allah means never complaining to people about your life, because deep in your heart you know Allah has already chosen what’s best for you. Trusting Allah is realizing that complaining to people is worthless because deep in your heart you know they’re as helpless as you are. For complaining to someone about a life calamity is identical to complaining about the One Who has mercy on you to one who has no mercy.
Trusting Allah means complaining about one’s self to Allah, rather than complaining about The Most Merciful to His pitiless creatures. There are three ranks here: 1) Complaining about yourself to Him 2) Complaining about His creatures to Him, or 3) Complaining about Him to His creatures. So make sure you always stick to No. 1. Stick to No. 1 and only complain about yourself to Him, and He will turn every other creature to your service so you won’t need to complain again.
Before the beautiful month of Ramadan showers us with its mercy and blessings, we all need to make sure we’re as close as possible to Allah. There are two homeworks each and everyone of us should strive to accomplish before Ramadan: 1) Pardon all people 2) Don’t let people distract you and come between you and Allah. One verse comes to mind when one thinks about this and it is enough of a reminder until Ramadan comes “Draws near for mankind their reckoning, while they turn away in heedlessness” (21:1).
We all need to follow the example of the prophet SAW and his companions even if it’s just from now until the end of Ramadan. Ali ibn Abi Taleb rA said to this Dunya (life) “I have divorced you three times and will never return to you again”, can we do this just during Ramadan? We need to divorce this Dunya even just for once from now until the end of Ramadan, then we need to find ourselves a cozy place at home now to isolate ourselves from all worldly temptations.
Lock yourself alone daily even if it’s just for five minutes (to start with), and do Dhikr bearing in mind that the light of truth is brighter than that of the sun. To succeed and benefit from Ramadan you need three things: 1) Get rid of every doubt 2) Give away your lusts and 3) Have patience. And along the way, please keep one verse in mind throughout Ramadan. Open your Quran on Chapter Al-Sajdah, verse 24 and read it aloud:
“And me made from among them leaders giving guidance under our command when they were patient and believed with certainty in Our signs” (32:24).
Ramadan is your yearly spiritual recharge, a potential life saver and an open invitation to Paradise, so every effort is well worth it!
Allah SWT says is Surat Al-Takathur “Alhakum Al-Takathur” (102:1), meaning that the mutual rivalry among us (humans) for piling up worldly things is diverting us. This chapter of the Quran has three messages for us: a promise, a threat and a menace, so it definitely deserves our attention.
When Allah SWT says that these worldly matters diverts you, He is directly informing us that we are not to be excused for such diversion. The miraculous wording of the Quran is fully present here as Allah SWT said that worldly matters divert us, and not busy us. If the word “busy” was used instead of “divert”, we would’ve been excused, so what exactly is diverting our attention from our Creator?
Rivalry covers money, power, authority, gender and knowledge. The moment seeking more of these affects your Iman (faith), you’re in trouble! Now listen to the teacher of mankind as he SAW explains to us the reality of wealth right after he read “Alhakum al-takathur” (102:1). He SAW said “O son of Adam, is there anything that really belongs to you, except that which you consumed, which you utilized, or which you wore and then it was worn out or you gave as charity and sent it forward for yourself?” [Muslim].
The prophet SAW set it crystal clear: wealth is what we have “already” consumed, utilized or sent forward to our Hereafter in charity. When you waste your time in this world piling imaginary and unneeded wealth, you are actually deviating away from Allah’s Straight path. Do you really want to have a “living heart”, be healthy and powerful, and live happily and joyfully? Piety is your key to all three of them.
Protect your heart and limbs from sin, and Allah will fill your heart with Iman (faith) and make it a “living” heart. Protect your heart and limbs from matters which lead to sin, and Allah SWT will make you healthy and powerful. Protect your heart and limbs from unnecessary curiosity and backbiting, and Allah SWT will grant you happiness and joy.
Finally rest assured that every calamity and distress is a result of sins and negligence in praising and remembering Allah,and vice versa.
Wouldn’t it be better if we learned about faith and monotheism from an absolute source instead of all those personal opinions? Well, this is exactly what Allah SWT gives us in Surat Al-Kahf, which we’re supposed to read every Friday as a reminder of the whole story. Then the full details are disclosed to us in Surat Qaf, which the prophet once read, verse by verse, instead of lecturing his companions.
The crystal clear message throughout Surat Qaf is that this life is the smaller world, and that the bigger one is called the Hereafter. The truth is that on Resurrection Day, you and everyone else will come driven by one angel, and witnessed by another. Then the second angel will say “Here is the record ready with me” (50:23); your record and everybody else’s, for a permanent destination.
Allah will bring back your very same body and your very same soul for either reward or punishment, Heaven or Hell; there is no other option. And the disbelievers say “That is a far return” (50:3), are you challenging your Lord people? How did He create you in the first place?! And the Most Merciful still tries to convince them “We know that which the earth takes of them (their dead bodies)” (50:4), to no avail.
Then Allah SWT warns us of these disbelievers “So they are in a confused state (cannot differentiate right from wrong)” (50:5). And He reminds us so that we don’t get distorted by their lies “Were we then tired with the first creation?” (50:15). Answer your Lord! Or listen to His answer “And nothing of fatigue touched Us” (50:38), so how dare you doubt that He will bring us all back on Resurrection Day?!
Then Your Lord gives you exact tiny details so that you don’t ever fall victim to the disbelievers’ lies, listen carefully now and imagine! “And the trumpet will be blown, that will be the day whereof warning (Resurrection Day)” (50:20). Can you imagine the trumpet?! The tiny details leave no room for excuses, so “Indeed you were heedless of this” (50:22), may Allah SWT protect us all from heedlessness!
And this is when the devil betrays them all and says “Our Lord! I did not make him transgress, but he was (himself) far astray” (50:27), may Allah protect us! And your Lord concludes “And I am not unjust to My slaves” (50:29) and He sends the believers to Paradise, may we all be among them!
So why our Lord did You tell us the whole story in advance? Why did You include every tiny detail? Now listen carefully as your Lord answers:
“Indeed in this is a reminder for anyone who keeps a heart, or listens attentively” (50:37).
“The day when all will hear the Scream with the truth; this is the day of coming out of the graves” (50:42).
Now please go read Surat Qaf and try to visualize the whole scenario; trust me, it will change your life forever!
Do you have a problem concentrating and focusing full time while reading the Quran? If so, then this article is for you! You love the Quran, that’s for sure; otherwise, you wouldn’t be so keen to read it and wouldn’t get so frustrated by not being able to give it your full attention. The problem with many people is that they think that focus while reading the Quran is a work of mind, while in reality, it is a work of heart!
Listen carefully to the Creator “Verily, therein is indeed a reminder for him who has a heart or gives ear” (50:30), no mention of mind here! Therefore to prepare your heart for the Quran, you must first comprehend that what you’re reading are the words of Allah addressed to none but you!
For a perfect effect, both the stimulus (the Quran) and the receiver (your heart) must be in perfect condition; we know for sure that the Quran is perfect, but how about your heart?! The status of a perfect heart, well prepared to receive the Quran, is called a “Living Heart”, and it was described by Allah SWT as follows:
“This is only a reminder and a plain Quran. That it may give warning to him who is living”(36:69-70), i.e. the one who has a living heart.
The difference between a living heart and a dead heart is that the first instantly believes Allah’s words, whereas the second needs tangible evidence. A living heart knows that it is a Muslim’s eyewitness on this worldly life, and hence, sees ‘ghayb’ (unseen matters such as angels) by insight. Consequently, before reading the Quran, you need to make that heart pledge that this is the absolute proof that needs no further evidence.
You need to be “fully” aware that every benefit and your absolute success is contained therein in the Quran, and that you’ll fully submit to it. You need to understand that this whole book, the Quran, is solely addressed to you, therefore, you cannot reject parts of its teachings. It’s not like this verse talks to me, but that other verse suits my brother or sister more; NO, both verses and every other verse is solely addressed to you!
Only then, your heart will shift from a state of hesitant belief and become a living heart; and only then you’ll attain that needed level of Quran focus. May Allah SWT fill our hearts with faith, and help us reach the state of living hearts that lead us to comprehend the Quran as He SWT pleases, Ameen!
There are many misconceptions related to the month of Shaaban which are not supported by any authentic Hadith of the prophet SAW. The most common misconception in Shaaban is that related to the virtues of the night of the 15th of Shaaban. The truth is that the Hadiths related to the night of the 15th of Shaaban are either broken in the chain of reporters, weak or fabricated.
Therefore, singling out the night of the 15th of Shaaban for special worship is wrong, but treating it like any other night is the right thing to do. Similarly, it’s perfectly allowed to fast the 15th of Shaaban if it happens to be a Monday, Thursday or one of the White Days. The most important thing to note is that you’ll be rewarded for fasting or praying Qiyyam on the 15th just like any other day of Shaaban, and just like any other day of the year.
Another misconception is that some people think that fasting till the very last day of Shaban, or that fasting the very last day of Shaaban is a good thing to be well prepared for Ramadan. The truth is that the last day of Shaaban is called the “Day of Doubt”, and that the prophet SAW has forbidden fasting such days. The Prophet said “Do not anticipate Ramadan by fasting one or two days before it begins, but if a man habitually fasts, then let him fast” [Bukhari].
Based on these stated “facts”, it becomes crystal clear that the month of Shaaban is special as a whole but not for a particular night or virtue. The month of Shaban is special because the prophet SAW used to fast in it more than in any other month of the year (except Ramadan of course), but not for any 15th night’s virtues. The month of Shaaban is special because your worship in it prepares your heart and mind for Ramadan, but not for any special or extra virtues.
May Allah SWT protect us from falling victims to this Hadith where the prophet SAW said “Whoever tells a lie about me deliberately, let him take his place in Hell” [Bukhari & Muslim].