Sep 30, 2011

On dhikr morning and evening

--Riyad as-Salihin (The Meadows of the Righteous)
---by Imam Nawawi

248. Chapter: On dhikr morning and evening

Allah says, "Remember your Lord in yourself humbly and fearfully, without loudness of voice, morning and evening (âsâl). Do not be among the heedless," (7:205) and linguists say that âsâl is the plural of asîl and is the time between 'Asr and Maghrib.
Allah says, "Glorify your Lord before the rising of the sun and before its setting," (W20:128; H20:130)
and He says, "Glorify your Lord with praise in the evening ('ashi) and the early morning." (40:55)
and linguists says that 'ashi is between the decline of the sun and its setting. The Almighty says, "In houses which Allah has permitted to be built and in which His name is remembered, there are men who proclaim His glory morning," (W24:26; H24:36-37)
and the Almighty says, "We subjected the mountains to glorify with him in the evening and at sunrise." (W38:17; H38:18)

1451. Abu Hurayra reported that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "On the Day of Rising no one will bring anything better than someone who says in the morning and evening, 'Glory be to Allah and by His praise' a hundred times except someone who says the same as he says or more." [Muslim]

1452. Abu Hurayra said, "A man came to the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, and said, 'Messenger of Allah, what agony I suffered last night from a scorpion which stung me yesterday!' He said, 'If you had said in the evening, "I seek refuge with the perfect words of Allah from the evil of what He has created," it would not have harmed you." [Muslim]

1453. Abu Hurayra stated that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, used to say in the morning, "O Allah, by You we start the day and by You we end it, by You we live and by You we die and to You is the gathering." In the evening he would say. "O Allah, by You we end the day, by You we live and by You we die and to You is the gathering." [Abu Dawud and at-Tirmidhi]

1454. Abu Hurayra reported that Abu Bakr as-Siddiq said, "Messenger of Allah, tell me some words I can say in the morning and in the evening." He said, "Say, 'O Allah, Creator of the heavens and the earth, Knower of the Unseen and the Visible, Lord and Master of everything. I bear witness that there is no god but You. I seek refuge from you from the evil of my self and from the evil of Shaytan and his shirk.'" He said, "Say it in the morning and in the evening and when you go to bed." [Abu Dawud and at-Tirmidhi]

1455. Ibn Mas'ud said, "In the evening, the Prophet of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, 'We have reached the evening and the kingdom has reached the evening by Allah. Praise belongs to Allah. There is no god but Allah alone with no partner," The transmitter said, "I think that he also said, 'His is the kingdom and His is the praise. He has power over everything. Lord, I ask you for the good of what is in this night and the good of what comes after it, and I seek refuge with You from the evil of what is in this night and the evil of what comes after it. Lord, I seek refuge with You from laziness and the evil of pride. Lord, I seek refuge with You from punishment in the Fire and punishment in the grave.'" In the morning, he also said, "We have reached the morning and the kingdom has reached the morning by Allah." [Abu Dawud and at-Tirmidhi]

1456. 'Abdullah ibn Khubayb said, "The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said to me, 'Recite, "Say: He is God, One," and the suras of seeking refuge in the evening and the morning three times, it will be enough to protect you in respect of everything.'" [Abu Dawud and at-Tirmidhi]

1457. 'Uthman ibn 'Affan reported that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "No slave of Allah says in the morning every day and the evening every night, 'In the name of Allah by whose name nothing in the earth or the heaven can be harmed. He is the Hearing, the Knowing,' three times without that ensuring that nothing will harm him." [Abu Dawud and at-Tirmidhi]

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Sep 29, 2011

Sargento Cheese -- No animal enzymes

I am trying to find out all the cheese that is available in the market and has no animal enzymes. And the first of it's kind is Sargento which has non-animal enzymes in its cheese and the products which have animal enzymes are also listed at their site. Way to go...!!

Q. What is the source of the enzymes in your cheeses?

Rennets (enzymes) are added when making cheese to thicken the mixture to form the curds. These milk-clotting enzymes originate in microbial (synthetic) and animal sources. The manufacturing process of most varieties of cheese (all cured or ripened cheeses) involves enzyme coagulation.
Most Sargento shredded and sliced cheeses and all of our refrigerated natural cheese snacks are made with non-animal rennets. The only Sargento natural cheeses that may contain animal enzymes are those that contain Romano, Asiago, or Jarlsberg cheeses. Those include: Artisan Blends Shredded Parmesan & Romano Cheese, Shredded 6 Cheese Italian Cheese, Shredded Reduced Fat 4 Cheese Italian Cheese, and Deli Style Sliced Jarlsberg Cheese. The cheese dip in our non-refrigerated MooTown Snacks, Cheese Dip & Cracker Sticks, Cheese Dip & Pretzel Sticks, and Cheese Dip & Crackers, is made with beef rennet.

Q. Are Sargento products kosher?

No, our products aren’t kosher because their production isn’t supervised and certified by a rabbi. If, however, you’re asking about the sources of our enzymes, none of our products contain pork enzymes. In fact, the only Sargento natural cheeses that may contain animal enzymes are those that contain Romano, Asiago or Jarlsberg cheeses. Those include: Artisan Blends Shredded Parmesan & Romano Cheese, Shredded 6 Cheese Italian Cheese, Shredded Reduced Fat 4 Cheese Italian Cheese, and Deli Style Sliced Jarlsberg Cheese. The cheese dip in our non-refrigerated Sargento Snacks, Cheese Dip & Cracker Sticks, Cheese Dip & Pretzel Sticks, and Cheese Dip & Crackers, is made with beef rennet.
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Sep 3, 2011

Tips to Overcome the ‘Modern Hijab Syndrome'

Assalamu Alaikum!

Contrary to what some people assume, the following article is not telling women how to wear hijab, subhanAllah . That is not my place, nor anyone else’s. Only Allah tells us how we should behave and sent us Prophet Muhammad (sal Allahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) to explain it through his Sunnah. I have not written this with an intention to force the “right” way of hijab, but rather I have written this intending to educate our sisters through elaborating that some methods of wearing hijab these days are actually controversial to what the Qur’an and Sunnah state. My hope is for us to redefine how we wear the hijab so as to purify our intentions and thus our appearance will inshaAllah reflect our rectified intentions. My background information is solely based on the Qur’an, Sunnah, and Tafseer of Ibn Kathir. I also used some humor to lighten the mood, but to also put some emphasis on certain issues. Some people might find some points I made quite harsh and opinionated. In the end, I am not here to enforce anything, but rather I am here to simply advise my beautiful Muslim sisters.

Please continue to read this with an open mind; I am not judging anyone, I have my own flaws. May Allah forgive and bless us all.

Author. Serine Yamout

Sifting through photos of good times with your friends, you notice each one has a signature style of wrapping her hijab, color theme, and fashion. Think about the way you dress. Is it to please others? Or is it to please Allah?
Islam, the name of our beautiful religion, simply means “submission” to Allah alone. He is aware of our intentions, which must be aimed to be done for Him, simply due to that fact that He is our Creator and He has ordered it. As is said in the Qur’an,
“And He is Allah, [the only deity] in the heavens and earth. He knows your secret and what you make public, and He knows that which you earn .” (6:3)
This demonstrates how Allah knows what thoughts run through our minds and sees what presentation we put out for others, only emphasizing the importance of purifying our intentions, so that they match the purpose of how we represent ourselves on the outside.
How is the hijab supposed to be worn? Allah clearly illustrates how a woman should wear it properly in the Qur’an,
“And say to the believing women to lower their gazes, and to guard their private parts, and not to expose their beauty except what is apparent of it, and to extend their headcovers to cover their chests, and not to display their beauty except to their husbands, or their fathers, or their husband’s fathers, or their sons, or their husband’s sons, or their brothers, or their brothers’ sons, or their sisters’ sons, or their womenfolk, or what their right hands rule (slaves), or from the men who have no physical desire, or the small children who are not aware of the private aspects of women, and not to stomp their feet (on the ground) so as to make known what they hide of their adornments (jewelry). And turn to Allah in repentance together, Oh Believers, so that you may succeed.” (24:31)
Therefore, the front of our hijabs should come down low over our chests, not wrapped tight around our necks as is the current style. Imam Abu al-Fida ibn Kathir clarifies how and why:
“Extend their headcovers to cover their bosoms’ means that they should wear the headcover in such a way that they cover their chests so that they will be different from the women of the Jahiliyyah (time before Islam) who did not do that, but would pass in front of men with their chests uncovered and with their necks, forelocks, and earrings uncovered.”
This explanation also denounces three other current styles that have been prominent these days:
1. Naked Neck. Exposing the neck by pinning the scarf to the back was the exact way women before Islam wore their scarves. Some would even wear heavy and glittering jewelry around their necks to emphasize the look. Islam came to wash away the unnecessary customs and prohibit the harmful actions of our forefathers, so why reintroduce what Islam has already ruled against? Islam has ordered that our necks are considered part of what the hijab must cover, so please bring the ends of your scarf to the front of your neck if you do prefer to pin your scarf in the back. Or you could simply pin your scarf to the front under your chin and let the ends fall loosely over your neck.
2. Sneak Peak. The title given when hair bangs are allowed to fall out from under the scarf to the front over the foreheads and sometimes eyes. It’s grown pretty common to have the bangs styled, cut, and highlighted just so that they have a pleasant appearance when they ‘accidentally’ fall out of the scarf. We see the photos of models for clothing lines everywhere. If the model doesn’t have her hair tied back, then her bangs are falling over her eyes, giving her a seductive look. With that said, it’s easy to keep bangs from slipping by wearing headbands or hairclips, which can be found at the super market. Undercap-pieces specifically designed to be worn under a scarf can be used to keep the bangs from falling out as well.
3. Dumbo Ears. This happens when ears and earrings are peeking out from the sides. Earrings are flashy in general, and in this specific case, the earrings are usually huge and sparkly. There is no other intention for displaying earrings outside the scarf besides wanting to add a more attractive look to what is worn. Tuck them in please.

I am now going to highlight a few more unneeded styles of today to the list.
4. Conehead. This can be achieved by wearing a cushion above the head or ponytail and wrapping the scarf over it. Other styles include adding a large flower to the top or intricately twisting the scarf into a bun and pinning it to the side. Just don’t do it. All it does is create a sign above the head displaying the words “Check Me Out!”
5. The Drop-Top Scarf. The scarf simply slips off to the shoulders whenever it gets too tired at the top and exposes luscious locks of hair. Wear a scarf with not-so-silky material that would have more friction and prevent it to come loose or slip. Pinning the scarf at the top or side is usually helpful too.
6. Speedo Body Suit. This look occurs when skinny jeans, tights, or body-shirts are worn. It also takes place whenever other clothes, such as dresses, are skin-tight as if they’ve been painted on. This image completely contradicts the whole standard of modesty, which is the purpose of hijab. What the woman is doing is putting her figure on display. Even if a long blouse is worn on top of the body-shirt and skinny jeans to cover her chest and thighs, her arms and shins are still emphasized. Looser clothing should be worn instead.
7. The Clown. Eyeshadow, colored lipstick, blush, and foundation are all products of the make-up industry. However, we’re all already beautiful products of Allah’s creation, so why use tools of society to demean ourselves in the process of submitting to what society claims should be beautiful? Put them away. If people don’t appreciate the way Allah created you, then they don’t deserve your efforts to abide by their judgments.
The reason this advice is being repeated is for the simple fact that we as those who cover, are not only representing ourselves, but the entire population of Muslim women who wear hijab. So if we don’t wear it properly as stated in the Qur’an and displayed in the Sunnah, then we would be giving those who are not educated in Islam and hijab the wrong image of how it should be worn. We must always be conscious of our appearances and actions, since we carry the image of our Ummah. This is a call to remind yourselves and I, that we are responsible for how others perceive us if we may be at fault for dressing inappropriately. Besides that, we would be letting ourselves down when we declare Allah as our Lord as we recite the Shahadah every time we pray, but the way we may be dressing is the exact opposite of what comes out of our mouth?
Basically, the easiest way I think of it when getting dressed is: Keep it simple, Serine.

Whatever I have said that is correct comes from Allah, and if I have made any mistakes, then I take full accountability and ask Allah to forgive me.

Courtesy: Sis.YM.
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