Monday, 3 December 2012

Dua Against Evil Eye & Black Magic

Dua al Ruqyah

For those who are unfamiliar with these duas, they're basically used as a remedy for anyone suffering from either psychological pain (i.e: depression, stress, anxiety, etc) or even physical pain.

It's also an excellent remedy for the evil eye, black magic and generally against evil people and evil Jinn.

These should be read on someone sick or even read on oneself. May Allah cure us of all illnesses.

Below is the transliteration of the dua with the English translation

Click here to listen and watch:

أعوذ بالله السميع العليم من الشيطان الرجيم من همزه و نفخه و نفثه

"Ah’odobillah his-Salim Al-Aleem himi-nush shaytan nira geem, min hamzihi wa nafkhihi wa nafiqh"

I seek refuge from Allah, the All-Hearing and All-Knowing from the accursed Satan (and) from his evil insinuations

بسم الله ارقيك من كل شيء يؤذيك من شر كل ذي نفس أو عين حاسد. الله يشفيك. بسم الله ارقيك.

"Bismillahi arqika, min kulli shay'in yu'dhika, min sharri kulli nafsin aw `ayni hasidi, Allahu yashfika, bismillahi arqika"

With the Name of Allah. I recite over you (to cleanse you) from all that troubles you, and from every harmful mischief and from the evil of the eyes of an envier. Allah will cure you; and with the Name of Allah, I recite over you

اُعيذك بكلمات الله التآمّة، من كل شيطان و هاَمّة، و من كل عين لاَمّة

"O’edo bikalimatillahi taam’ma, min kulli shaytani wa aa’ma, wa min kulli aynin laa’ma"

I seek refuge with Allah’s Perfect words from every devil and evil soul and from every evil eye.

اُعيذك بكلمات الله التاَمّات من شر ما خلق

"O’edo bikalimatillahi taam’mati min shari ma khalaq"

I seek refuge with Allah’s Perfect words from the evil He has created

اسأل الله العظيم، رب العرش العظيم ان يشفيك

"As-halali hil Adim, Rubb-bil-Arshil-Adim, yesh fiyak"
(7 times)

I ask Allah The supreme, Lord of the Magnificent Throne to cure you

اللهم رب الناس، اذهب البأس، و اشف، انت الشافي. لا شفاء إلا شفاءك ، شفاءًا لا يغادر سقما

"Allahumma Rabban-nasi, adhhibil-ba'sa, washfi, Antash-Shafi, la shifa'a illa shifa'uka, shifaan la yughadiru saqaman" (3 times)

O Allah! Lord of mankind! Remove this disease and cure (him or her)! You are the Great Curer. There is no cure but through You, which leaves behind no disease

اللهم بارك عليه ، و اذهب عنه حر العين و بردها و وصبها

"Allahoma barik alahi, wa adhiba anhom heral ayni wa bhadhaha wa wasaba"

O Allah, bless him, and remove from him the heat of the eye, its hatred and its misery.

اللهم صل و سلم علي محمد

"Allahoma Sali wa salim ala Muhammad"

Oh Allah, we ask for Your peace and blessings on (Prophet) Muhammad [SAW]

Wednesday, 31 October 2012

The last words by a dying man about success, wealth, happiness and God

Below is the transcript of the talk of Dr. Richard Teo, who was a 40-year-old millionaire and cosmetic surgeon but came to find out he had stage-4 lung cancer. He selflessly came to share his life experience. If you wish to watch the video instead of reading, the link is available below (you will see a big difference in how he looked in the video and how he did when healthy, in the picture below)

"Hi good morning to all of you. My voice is a bit hoarse, so please bear with me. I thought I'll just introduce myself. My name is Richard, I'm a medical doctor. And I thought I'll just share some thoughts of my life. It's my pleasure to be invited by prof. Hopefully, it can get you thinking about you pursue this...embarking on your training to become dental surgeons, to think about other things as well.

Since young, I am a typical product of today's society. Relatively successful product that society requires. From young, I came from a below average family. I was told by the media... and people around me that happiness is about success. And that success is about being wealthy. With this mind-set, I've always be extremely competitive, since I was young.

Not only do I need to go to the top school, I need to have success in all fields. Uniform groups, track, everything. I needed to get trophies, needed to be successful, I needed to have colours award, national colours award, everything. So I was highly competitive since young. I went on to medical school, graduated as a doctor. Some of you may know that within the medical faculty, ophthalmology is one of the most highly sought after specialities. So I went after that as well. I was given a traineeship in ophthalmology, I was also given a research scholarship by NUS to develop lasers to treat the eye.

So in the process, I was given 2 patents, one for the medical devices, and another for the lasers. And you know what, all this academic achievements did not bring me any wealth. So once I completed my bond with MOH, I decided that this is taking too long, the training in eye surgery is just taking too long. And there's lots of money to be made in the private sector. If you're aware, in the last few years, there is this rise in aesthetic medicine. Tons of money to be made there. So I decided, well, enough of staying in institution, it's time to leave. So I quit my training halfway and I went on to set up my aesthetic clinic... in town, together with a day surgery centre.

You know the irony is that people do not make heroes out average GP (general practitioner), family physicians. They don't. They make heroes out of people who are rich and famous. People who are not happy to pay $20 to see a GP, the same person have no qualms paying ten thousand dollars for a liposuction, 15 thousand dollars for a breast augmentation, and so on and so forth. So it's a no brainer isn't? Why do you want to be a GP? Become an aesthetic physician. So instead of healing the sick and ill, I decided that I'll become a glorified beautician. So, business was good, very good. It started off with waiting of one week, then became 3weeks, then one month, then 2 months, then 3 months. I was overwhelmed; there were just too many patients. Vanities are fantastic business. I employed one doctor, the second doctor, the 3rd doctor, the 4th doctor. And within the 1st year, we're already raking in millions. Just the 1st year. But never is enough because I was so obsessed with it. I started to expand into Indonesia to get all the rich Indonesian tai-tais who wouldn't blink an eye to have a procedure done. So life was really good.

So what do I do with the spare cash. How do I spend my weekends? Typically, I'll have car club gatherings. I take out my track car, with spare cash I got myself a track car. We have car club gatherings. We'll go up to Sepang in Malaysia. We'll go for car racing. And it was my life. With other spare cash, what do i do? I get myself a Ferrari. At that time, the 458 wasn't out, it's just a spider convertible, 430. This is a friend of mine, a schoolmate who is a forex trader, a banker. So he got a red one, he was wanting all along a red one, I was getting the silver one.

So what do I do after getting a car? It's time to buy a house, to build our own bungalows. So we go around looking for a land to build our own bungalows, we went around hunting. So how do i live my life? Well, we all think we have to mix around with the rich and famous. This is one of the Miss Universe. So we hang around with the beautiful, rich and famous. This by the way is an internet founder. So this is how we spend our lives, with dining and all the restaurants and Michelin Chefs you know.

So I reach a point in life that I got everything for my life. I was at the pinnacle of my career and all. That's me one year ago in the gym and I thought I was like, having everything under control and reaching the pinnacle.

Well, I was wrong. I didn't have everything under control. About last year March, I started to develop backache in the middle of nowhere. I thought maybe it was all the heavy squats I was doing. So I went to SGH, saw my classmate to do an MRI, to make sure it's not a slipped disc or anything. And that evening, he called me up and said that we found bone marrow replacement in your spine. I said, sorry what does that mean? I mean I know what it means, but I couldn't accept that. I was like “Are you serious?” I was still running around going to the gym you know. But we had more scans the next day, PET scans -positrons emission scans, they found that actually I have stage 4 terminal lung cancer. I was like "Whoa where did that come from?” It has already spread to the brain, the spine, the liver and the adrenals. And you know one moment I was there, totally thinking that I have everything under control, thinking that I've reached the pinnacle of my life. But the next moment, I have just lost it.

This is a CT scan of the lungs itself. If you look at it, every single dot there is a tumour. We call this miliaries tumour. And in fact, I have tens of thousands of them in the lungs. So, I was told that even with chemotherapy, that I'll have about 3-4months at most. Did my life come crushing on, of course it did, who wouldn't? I went into depression, of course, severe depression and I thought I had everything.

See the irony is that all these things that I have, the success, the trophies, my cars, my house and all. I thought that brought me happiness. But i was feeling really down, having severe depression. Having all these thoughts of my possessions, they brought me no joy. The thought of... You know, I can hug my Ferrari to sleep, no... No, it is not going to happen. It brought not a single comfort during my last ten months. And I thought they were, but they were not true happiness. But it wasn't. What really brought me joy in the last ten months was interaction with people, my loved ones, friends, people who genuinely care about me, they laugh and cry with me, and they are able to identify the pain and suffering I was going through. That brought joy to me, happiness. None of the things I have, all the possessions, and I thought those were supposed to bring me happiness. But it didn't, because if it did, I would have felt happy think about it, when I was feeling most down..

You know the classical Chinese New Year that is coming up. In the past, what do I do? Well, I will usually drive my flashy car to do my rounds, visit my relatives, to show it off to my friends. And I thought that was joy, you know. I thought that was really joy. But do you really think that my relatives and friends, whom some of them have difficulty trying to make ends meet, that will truly share the joy with me? Seeing me driving my flashy car and showing off to them? No, no way. They won’t be sharing joy with me. They were having problems trying to make ends meet, taking public transport. In fact i think, what I have done is more like you know, making them envious, jealous of all I have. In fact, sometimes even hatred.

Those are what we call objects of envy. I have them, I show them off to them and I feel it can fill my own pride and ego. That didn't bring any joy to these people, to my friends and relatives, and I thought they were real joy.

Well, let me just share another story with you. You know when I was about your age, I stayed in king Edward VII hall. I had this friend whom I thought was strange. Her name is Jennifer, we're still good friends. And as I walk along the path, she would, if she sees a snail, she would actually pick up the snail and put it along the grass patch. I was like why do you need to do that? Why dirty your hands? It’s just a snail. The truth is she could feel for the snail. The thought of being crushed to death is real to her, but to me it's just a snail. If you can't get out of the pathway of humans then you deserve to be crushed, it’s part of evolution isn't it? What an irony isn't it?

There I was being trained as a doctor, to be compassionate, to be able to empathise; but I couldn't. As a house officer, I graduated from medical school, posted to the oncology department at NUH. And, every day, every other day I witness death in the cancer department. When I see how they suffered, I see all the pain they went through. I see all the morphine they have to press every few minutes just to relieve their pain. I see them struggling with their oxygen breathing their last breath and all. But it was just a job. When I went to clinic every day, to the wards every day, take blood, give the medication but was the patient real to me? They weren't real to me. It was just a job, I do it, I get out of the ward, I can't wait to get home, I do my own stuff.

Was the pain, was the suffering the patients went through real? No. Of course I know all the medical terms to describe how they feel, all the suffering they went through. But in truth, I did not know how they feel, not until I became a patient. It is until now; I truly understand how they feel. And, if you ask me, would I have been a very different doctor if I were to re-live my life now, I can tell you yes I will. Because I truly understand how the patients feel now. And sometimes, you have to learn it the hard way.

Even as you start just your first year, and you embark this journey to become dental surgeons, let me just challenge you on two fronts.

Inevitably, all of you here will start to go into private practice. You will start to accumulate wealth. I can guarantee you. Just doing an implant can bring you thousands of dollars, it's fantastic money. And actually there is nothing wrong with being successful, with being rich or wealthy, absolutely nothing wrong. The only trouble is that a lot of us like myself couldn't handle it.

Why do I say that? Because when I start to accumulate, the more I have, the more I want. The more I wanted, the more obsessed I became. Like what I showed you earlier on, all I can was basically to get more possessions, to reach the pinnacle of what society did to us, of what society wants us to be. I became so obsessed that nothing else really mattered to me. Patients were just a source of income, and I tried to squeeze every single cent out of these patients.

A lot of times we forget, whom we are supposed to be serving. We become so lost that we serve nobody else but just ourselves. That was what happened to me. Whether it is in the medical, the dental fraternity, I can tell you, right now in the private practice, sometimes we just advise patients on treatment that is not indicated. Grey areas. And even though it is not necessary, we kind of advocate it. Even at this point, I know who are my friends and who genuinely cared for me and who are the ones who try to make money out of me by selling me "hope". We kind of lose our moral compass along the way. Because we just want to make money.

Worse, I can tell you, over the last few years, we bad mouth our fellow colleagues, our fellow competitors in the industry. We have no qualms about it. So if we can put them down to give ourselves an advantage, we do it. And that's what happening right now, medical, dental everywhere. My challenge to you is not to lose that moral compass. I learnt it the hard way, I hope you don't ever have to do it.

Secondly, a lot of us will start to get numb to our patients as we started to practise. Whether is it government hospitals, private practice, I can tell you when I was in the hospital, with stacks of patient folders, I can't wait to get rid of those folders as soon as possible; I can't wait to get patients out of my consultation room as soon as possible because there is just so many, and that's a reality. Because it becomes a job, a very routine job. And this is just part of it. Do I truly know how the patient feels back then? No, I don't. The fears and anxiety and all, do I truly understand what they are going through? I don't, not until when this happens to me and I think that is one of the biggest flaws in our system.

We’re being trained to be healthcare providers, professional, and all and yet we don't know how exactly they feel. I'm not asking you to get involved emotionally, I don't think that is professional but do we actually make a real effort to understand their pain and all? Most of us won’t, alright, I can assure you. So don't lose it, my challenge to you is to always be able to put yourself in your patient's shoes.

Because the pain, the anxiety, the fear are very real even though it's not real to you, it's real to them. So don't lose it and you know, right now I'm in the midst of my 5th cycle of my chemotherapy. I can tell you it’s a terrible feeling. Chemotherapy is one of those things that you don't wish even your enemies to go through because it's just suffering, lousy feeling, throwing out, you don't even know if you can retain your meals or not. Terrible feeling! And even with whatever little energy now I have, I try to reach out to other cancer patients because I truly understand what pain and suffering is like. But it's kind of little, too late.

You guys have a bright future ahead of you with all the resource and energy, so I’m going to challenge you to go beyond your immediate patients. To understand that there are people out there who are truly in pain, truly in hardship. Don’t get the idea that only poor people suffer. It is not true. A lot of these poor people do not have much in the first place, they are easily contented. for all you know they are happier than you and me but there are out there, people who are suffering mentally, physically, hardship, emotionally, financially and so on and so forth, and they are real. We choose to ignore them or we just don't want to know that they exist.

So do think about it alright, even as you go on to become professionals and dental surgeons and all. That you can reach out to these people who are in need. Whatever you do can make a large difference to them. I'm now at the receiving end so I know how it feels, someone who genuinely care for you, encourage and all. It makes a lot of difference to me. That’s what happens after treatment. I had a treatment recently, but I’ll leave this for another day. A lot of things happened along the way, that's why I am still able to talk to you today.

I'll just end of with this quote here, it's from this book called Tuesdays with Morris, and some of you may have read it. Everyone knows that they are going to die; every one of us knows that. The truth is, none of us believe it because if we did, we will do things differently. When I faced death, when I had to, I stripped myself off all stuff totally and I focused only on what is essential. The irony is that a lot of times, only when we learn how to die then we learn how to live. I know it sounds very morbid for this morning but it's the truth, this is what I’m going through.

Don’t let society tell you how to live. Don’t let the media tell you what you're supposed to do. Those things happened to me. And I led this life thinking that these are going to bring me happiness. I hope that you will think about it and decide for yourself how you want to live your own life. Not according to what other people tell you to do, and you have to decide whether you want to serve yourself, whether you are going to make a difference in somebody else's life. Because true happiness doesn't come from serving yourself. I thought it was but it didn't turn out that way.

Also most importantly, I think true joy comes from knowing God. Not knowing about God – I mean, you can read the bible and know about God – but knowing God personally; getting a relationship with God. I think that’s the most important. That’s what I’ve learnt.

So if I were to sum it up, I’d say that the earlier we sort out the priorities in our lives, the better it is. Don’t be like me – I had no other way. I had to learn it through the hard way. I had to come back to God to thank Him for this opportunity because I’ve had 3 major accidents in my past – car accidents. You know, these sports car accidents – I was always speeding , but somehow I always came out alive, even with the car almost being overturned. And I wouldn’t have had a chance. Who knows, I don’t know where else I’d be going to! Even though I was baptised it was just a show, but the fact that this has happened, it gave me a chance to come back to God.

Few things I’d learnt though: 1. Trust in the Lord your God with all your heart – this is so important. 2. Is to love and serve others, not just ourselves.

There is nothing wrong with being rich or wealthy. I think it’s absolutely alright, because God has blessed so many people with good wealth, but the trouble is, I think, a lot of us can’t handle it. The more we have, the more we want. I’ve gone through it, the deeper the hole we dig, the more we get sucked into it, so much so that we worship wealth and lose focus. Instead of worshipping God, we worship wealth. It’s just a human instinct. It’s just so difficult to get out of it.

We are all professionals, and when we go into private practise, we start to build up our wealth – inevitably. So my thought are, when you start to build up wealth and when the opportunity comes, do remember that all these things don’t belong to us. We don’t really own it nor have rights to this wealth. It’s actually God’s gift to us. Remember that it’s more important to further His Kingdom rather than to further ourselves.

Anyway I think that I’ve gone through it, and I know that wealth without God is empty. It is more important that you fill up the wealth, as you build it up subsequently, as professionals and all, you need to fill it up with the wealth of God."

Dr Richard Teo said these words on Jan, 19, 2012. Just recently a few days ago on October, 18, 2012 he passed away.
Video link:
Small reminder:

As a Muslim, learning about the reality of this worldly life and attachment to it is something I've learned from a young age. And yet those same things I heard over and over again are still the basics which one turns back to. I loved his words when he mentioned 'Instead of worshipping God, we worship wealth' and 'Wealth without God is empty'. These words no way shape or form are what we learn in popular culture, media and society. If only we can all live our lives like we'll die tomorrow so that we could see life from a clearer view. May Allah help us see that.

"The great Imam At-Tabarani collected a Hadith in which the Messenger of Allah (pbuh) said,

«مَثَلُ الَّذِي يَفِرُّ مِنَ الْمَوْتِ مَثَلُ الثَّعْلَبِ تَطْلُبُهُ الْأَرْضُ بِدَيْن، فَجَاءَ يَسْعَى حَتْى إِذَا أُعْيِيَ وَأُسْهِرَ دَخَلَ جُحْرَهُ وَقَالَتْ لَهُ الْأَرْضُ: يَا ثَعْلَبُ، دَيْنِي. فَخَرَجَ وَلَهُ حُصَاصٌ، فَلَمْ يَزَلْ كَذلِكَ حَتَّى تَقَطَّعَتْ عُنُقُهُ وَمَات»

(The parable of whoever tries to avoid death is that of a fox that had a debt to pay to the earth. The fox went away and when he became tired and the time to sleep overtook him, he entered his den. The earth said to him, `O fox! Pay my debt!' The fox went out howling and continued until his neck was cutoff, (i.e.,) he died.) This parable indicates that just as the fox had no way of escaping or avoiding the earth, likewise, man has no way of avoiding death." [Tafseer Ibn Kathir]

Oh Allah, give us a good end in this life!

Thursday, 5 July 2012

How an elderly man's prayer brought her to Islam

Here name was Cassie, just 23 years old. She just graduated from nursing school and her first job was to help a Muslim elderly man. This is her story...

"My name is Cassie, I am 23 years old. I graduated as a qualified nurse this year and was given my first position as a home nurse.

My patient was an English gentleman in his early 80s who suffered from Alzheimer’s. In the first meeting I was given the patient’s record and from it could see that he was a convert to the religion of Islam, therefore he was a Muslim.
I knew from this that I would need to take into account some modes of treatment that my go against his faith, and therefore try to adapt my care to meet his needs. I brought in some ‘halal’ meat to cook for him and ensured that there was no pork or alcohol in the premises as I did some research which showed that these were forbidden in Islam.

My patient was at a very advanced stage of his condition so a lot of my colleagues could not understand why I was going to so much effort for him, but I understood that a person who commits to a faith deserves that commitment to be respected, even if they are not in a position to understand.

Anyway after a few weeks with my patient I began to notice some patterns of movement.
At first I thought it was some copied motions he’d seen someone do, but I saw him repeat the movements at particular times; morning, afternoon, evening.
The movements were to raise his hands, bow and then put his head to the ground. I could not understand it. He was also repeating sentences in another language, I couldn’t figure out what language it was as his speech was slurred but I know the same verses were repeated daily. Also there was something strange, he didnt allow me to feed him with my left hand [I am left-handed].

Somehow I knew this linked to his religion but didn’t know how. One of my colleagues told me about paltalk as a place for debates and discussions and as I did not know any Muslims except for my patient I thought it would be good to speak to some live and ask questions. I went on the Islam section and entered the room ‘True Message’.

Here I asked questions regarding the repeated movements and was told that these were the actions of prayer, I did not really believe it until someone posted a link of the Islamic prayer on youtube.

I was shocked.

A man who has lost all memory of his children, of his occupation, and could barely eat and drink was able to remember not only actions of prayer but verses that were in another language.

This was nothing short of incredible and I knew that this man was devout in his faith, which made me want to learn more in order to care for him the best I could.
I came into the paltalk room as often as I could and was given a link to read the translation of the Quran and listen to it.

The chapter of the ‘Bee’ gave me chills and I repeated it several times a day. I saved a recording of the Quran on my iPod and gave it to my patient to listen to, he was smiling and crying, and in reading the translation I could see why. I applied what I gained from paltalk to my care for my patient but gradually found myself coming to the room to find answers for myself.

I never really took the time to look at my life; I never knew my father, my mother died when I was 3, me and my brother were raised by our grandparents who died 4 years ago, so now it’s just the two of us. But despite all this loss, I always thought I was happy, content.

It was only after spending time with my patient that felt like I was missing something. I was missing that sense of peace and tranquility my patient, even through suffering felt.

I wanted that sense of belonging and a part of something that he felt, even with no one around him. I was given a list of masjids in my area by a lady on paltalk and went down to visit one. I watched the prayer and could not hold back my tears.

I felt drawn to the masjid every day and the imam and his wife would give me books and tapes and welcome any questions I had. Every question I asked at the masjid and on paltalk was answered with such clarity and depth that I could do nothing but accept them.I have never practiced a faith but Always believed that there was a God; I just did not know how to worship Him.

One evening I came on paltalk and one of the speakers on the mic addressed me. He asked me if I have any questions, I said no. He asked if I was happy with the answers I was given, I said yes. He asked then what was stopping me accepting Islam, I could not answer. I went to the masjid to watch the dawn prayer the imam asked me the same question, I could not answer.

I then went to tend to my patient, I was feeding him and as I looked in his eyes I just realized, he was brought to me for a reason and the only thing stopping me from accepting was fear…. not fear in the sense of something bad, but fear of accepting something good, and thinking that I was not worthy like this man.

That afternoon I went to the masjid and asked the imam if I could say my declaration of faith, the Shahaadah. He helped me through it, and guided through what I would need to do next. I cannot explain the feeling I felt when I said it. It was like someone woke me up from sleep and sees everything more clearly.

The feeling was overwhelming joy, clarity and most of all…peace.

The first person I told was not my brother but my patient. I went to him, and before I even opened my mouth he cried and smiled at me. I broke down in front of him, I owed him so much. I came home logged on to paltalk and repeated the shahaadah for the room. They all helped me so much and even though I had never seen a single one of them, they felt closer to me then my own brother.

I did eventually call my brother to tell him and although he was wasn’t happy, he supported me and said he would be there, I couldn’t ask for any more.

After my first week as a Muslim my patient passed away in his sleep while I was caring for him. Inna lillahi wa inna ilahi raji’oon. He died a peaceful death and I was the only person with him. He was like the father I never had and he was my doorway to Islam.

From the day of my Shahaadah to this very day and for every day for as long as I live, I will pray that Allah shows mercy on him and grant him every good deed I perform in the tenfold. I loved him for the sake of Allah and I pray each night to become an atoms weight of the Muslim he was.

Islam is a religion with an open door; it is there for those who want to enter it…. Verily Allah is the Most Merciful, Most Kind."

* Note *
Our sister Cassie passed away October 2010, inna lillahi wa inna ilahi raji’oon - after she gave da’wah to her brother who had accepted Islam.

May Allah grant sister Cassie Paradise, Aameen thumma Aameen!

Thursday, 22 March 2012

A hadith Ibn Taymiyah considered very important

Abdur-Rahman ibn Sumurah said: "The Messenger of Allah (SAW) came out to us one day. He stood before us and said, 'Last night I saw something amazing...

I saw a man from among my ummah to whom the Angel of Death came to seize his soul, but his honoring of his parents came and kept the Angel of Death away from him.

I saw a man whose torment in the grave was about to come upon him, and his wudoo came and saved him from that

I saw a man from among my ummah whom the devils had seized, but his remembrance of Allah came and banished the devils from him.

I saw a man from among my ummah whom the angels of torment had seized, but his prayer came and saved him from them

I saw a man from among my ummah tormented by thirst. Every time he approached the Cistern he was pushed back, then his Ramadan fasting came and gave him to drink and quenched his thirst

I saw a man from among my ummah, and I saw the prophets sitting in circles. Every time he approached a circle he was repulsed, then his doing ghusl to clean himself from janaabah came, took him by the hand and brought him to beside me

I saw a man from among my ummah in front of whom was darkness, behind him was darkness, to his right was darkness, to his left was darkness, above him was darkness and beneath him was darkness. He was stumbling in the darkness, then his Hajj and Umrah came and brought him out of the darkness into the light

I saw a man from among my ummah trying to protect himself with his hands from the flames and sparks of the Fire, then his sadaqah (charity) came and formed a barrier between him and the Fire, and shielded his head

I saw a man from among my ummah speaking to the believers but they did not speak to him. Then his uploading of family ties came and said, 'O' Muslims he used to upload ties of kinship, so speak to him.' Then the believers spoke to him and shook hands with him and he with them.

I saw a man from among my ummah whom the guards of Hell had seized, then his enjoining of what was good and forbidding of what was evil came and saved him from them, and brought him to be with the angels of mercy

I saw a man from among my ummah kneeling down, with a screen between him and Allah. Then his good manners and attitude came and took him by the hand, brought him before Allah

I saw a man from among my ummah whose record of deeds had come to him from his left. But his fear of Allah came, took his record and placed it in his right hand

I saw a man from among my ummah whose balance was light, but his children who died in infancy came and made his balance heavy

I saw a man from among my ummah teetering at the edge of Hell, but his hope in Allah came and saved him from that, and he moved on.

I saw a man from among my ummah who had been thrown into the Fire, then his tears that he had wept for fear of Allah came and saved him from that

I saw a man from among my ummah standing on the siraat (bridge over Hell), trembling like a leaf in a violent wind. Then his positive thinking of Allah came and made him steady and enabled him to cross

I saw a man from among my ummah crawling across the siraat, sometimes on his stomach and sometimes on all fours, clinging on. Then his sending blessings upon me came and made him stand on his feet, and saved him

I saw a man from among my ummah who had reached the gates of paradise, but the gates were locked and he was shut out. Then his testimony that there is no god except Allah came and opened the gates for him, and admitted him to Paradise."

This is narrated by Al-Haafiz Abu Moosa al-Madeeni in Al-Targeeb fi'l-khisaal al-munjiyah wa'l-Tarheeb min al-Khilaal al-Murdiyah. His book is based on this hadith, on which it is a commentary. He said, this hadith is hasan jiddan, and it is narrated from Sa'eed ibn al-Musayyid by 'Amr ibn Aazar and 'Ali ibn Zayd ibn Jad'aan and Hilaal Abu Jablah.

Taken from the book 'The world of Jinns and Devils' by Umar S. al-Ashqar.
[Dr. ‘Umar Sulaymân al-Ashqar is a professor in the Faculty of Islamic Law at the University of Jordan. He was a student of several eminent scholars such as Shaykh ibn Bâz and Shaykh al-Albâni.]

Sunday, 18 March 2012

Muslim widow shares her story

Sister Sara has experienced what many have gone through and many more will too. Here's her story...

The 'janaziyah' (Muslim funeral) is over now. Everyone is coming over and giving me their condolences. They just buried my husband in the best way, and so many people turned out for his funeral. They all said the 'salat' and 'dua' (prayers) for him. I saw some of them brushing away tears too. I tried not to show it but I was not the only one crying, Al Hamdulillah (Praise be to God).

So many sisters came over and brought food. Friends dropped off more food. Relatives insisted I eat something (the last thing I want to do right now - is eat).

Everyone is looking at me with sad eyes, telling me, "It's going to be O.K. He's in a better place now. Inna lilahi wa inna elayhi rajioon (From Allah we came and to Allah is our return)".

My husband was ill for just a short time, and the last part of his life he suffered quite a bit. He lost over 100 pounds and looked as if he were almost dead. The hospital had him drugged up so much - he didn't seem to recognize me or any of our children, much less our grand kids. I was so worried he might not say 'shahadah' - but he did whisper it. I heard him, "Laa elaha illallah, Muhammadar rasulullah" (There is none to worship except God and Muhammad is His messenger).

I prayed to Allah to make it easy for him and to take him in the best way - as the true Muslim I know him to be.

When he passed, I was right there with him. I was saying shahadah to him over and over and he started to move his lips. And then somehow knew it was happening and then all of a sudden I heard the sound of the machine, you know - when the straight line goes across the screen and it makes a screaming sound....

Anyway, I just stared at him. I couldn't cry anymore. I tried, but the tears were all gone and I just sat there like a rock. I couldn't move, I couldn't say anything. Just stared. 
Yaa Allah! Why can't I cry?

He was smiling! I am not joking. I could see his face finally at peace and he really looked, well you know, peaceful. His mouth was turned up at the corners just like the first time I met him and he told my father he wanted to marry me. Oh, that was so long ago and yet, it seems like only last week.

But now, he's gone. What do I do?

I guess if a sister's husband dies unexpectedly or in an accident, all of a sudden, it is different for her. Sure, that makes sense. She didn't have time to think it over and try to prepare herself. I did. I even talked it over with the imam and some of the people of knowledge I trust. They assured me of the way to deal with the whole entire situation. That is what I want to share with other sisters.

O sister, if you haven't thought about it - do it now. None of us knows how long we have to live. Our imam quoted from the Quran telling us, "kullu nafsin tha-ikatul maout" (every soul shall taste death). And none of us knows where, when or how they will die.

I thought I was pretty much prepared for what would happen after (name deleted) passed away. But little could I know what was in store for me.

Al Hamdulillah (Thanks to Allah)! My husband had written out a Will and had signed by two witnesses. This would make things much easier for me and for our children. Everyone would be treated fairly according to Islamic Law. I would not have to worry about the house, or financial matters too much. That was a big blessing. Al Hamdulillah (Thanks to Allah).

But there were many other things (he) took care of and I never even thought about it before. The car, repairs, bills, errands and even taking out the trash (what day is it again?). I just hadn't thought about all of this before. But lucky for me, at least - while he was in the last days I did have a chance to start doing some of those things and sort of getting myself prepared. Still, there was a lot more than I was really ready for.

After the funeral, my family and a few friends would call or drop by, but they soon grew tired of me just talking about him (my husband). They would tell me to think about moving on with my life and look forward to new things.

Fridays are the hardest. My husband always went to Jummah (Friday sermon and prayers for Muslims) and then he come home, flashing that famous smile and ask me, "Where ya wanna go honey? Name it! Any place you like princess. What are you hungry for today?" No question about it - "Italian Gardens Restaurant" - My number one favorite. He didn't really like it. I know that. But he would suggest it as though it was the first thing on his mind.
"Let's go Italian. We can have BIZZA and BEEBZEE" he would say, making fun of the way our Arabic speaking brothers pronouce the words "pizza" and "pepsi" with "Bs" instead of "Ps". I refused to laugh at his dumb jokes -- Oh, if I could only hear him tell one of them now... or just see that smile again...

I did try to go back there a few months after he passed away. But it just wasn't the same. I went in and for the first time, I could really feel the people staring at me. All of a sudden my hijab made me so different. I didn't feel like that when my husband was with me there. He just made everything alright, you know?
 I sat there staring at the menu, munching on the breadsticks, feeling everyone looking at me and all of a sudden I just wanted to get out of there. This wasn't my place anymore. I didn't belong here. What was I doing?

Oh, yeah, and Friday night - That was our night! We used to sit together watching videos (G rated of course) and eating his favorite - Popcorn!
Oh how he loved to eat his popcorn. He could never get enough. Buttered – carmel – plain – salted – it didn't matter to him, as long as there was a lot of it. I guess I grew to love it because he did. But now - well, it just isn't the same anymore.

After spending a few weeks alone in the house, I decide to call up a sister I haven't seen in a long time. "Hi! Sister, salam alaykum (peace be unto you), how is everything? ... Me? I'm fine... what? Oh.. well, thank you for saying that.. I am sure he would be pleased with your nice prayers for him... But, you know, I was going to ask you.. ahh, could I... I mean, would you mind... is it OK if I just drop by and we... What? Oh sure. I understand. Yeah. Of course... No... no problem.. OK.. Well, I'll just call you later.. or you call me.. right? Sure... Salam alaykum.. (peace be unto you).

Well, that was awkward enough. Why didn't she invite me over? How come she just cut me off? Did she really have to take the kids out to the mall just that moment. What is the matter with me? Why am I so suspicious? Hmmm, get a grip on it girl. She has her life to live.

I just flopped down in my husband’s old chair. He loved that old chair. It had belonged to his dad. I always thought I would never sit in it, after his dad passed away. But now it just didn’t matter any more. Actually, it made me recall how he would sit there for hours and hours, talking on the phone about Islam to people or typing away at his computer in those chatrooms.

My husband used to go online all the time and talk with people. He even asked me to talk to the new sisters and help them out. But I was too shy and besides, what do I know about Islam? I feel insecure talking about Islam in today’s world. Maybe I should leave all this to the experts. You know.

Sitting there, I start thinking back.. my husband and I used to go places, visit his friends and take trips to see my family and his from time to time. But now things were different. I still got a few phone calls. A sister wants to know if I have the recipe for some India dish I made a long time ago. Muslim brother is asking if I was OK and if I needed anything. But I just couldn't ask, you know?

My husband and I were never rich, we didn’t have a lot. But Allah always gave us enough to eat and pay our bills and for that, we were always thankful, Al Hamdulillah.

I started remembering those days when my husband would be gone, traveling around with brothers visiting the Muslim families, going to mosques and helping raise funds for children to be able to go to school and get proper educations. He would come back with stories all about this community and this group and that group, and how Muslims really needed to put aside their differences and work together for the common good of our community. He mentioned several times, about the need of caring for our sisters, those who were new to Islam and those who were divorced – or widowed (like me)…

I tried to visit our local mosque, but the sisters there just didn’t seem to have time for my stories about my husband and what we used to do. I guess I am boring now. Maybe I was always boring. I don’t know.

About the only thing anyone talked to me was to ask me if I was going to move in with my kids. But they are grown and have their own kids. Besides one lives half way around the world, and the other one has enough problems without me hanging around.

I did meet some other widows. They said they experienced even worse than me. In some mosques the sisters told me, they were actually told to just stay out. It’s almost like a private club for married sisters or young sisters looking to get married. Not a place for widows without family. Especially not for converts to Islam, like me – who they fear, might be looking for a husband.

A couple of sisters offered to call me between taking care of kids, doing laundry, making sandwiches and running errands for their husbands. The thought was there, I know they have good intentions. But they don’t call.

And being all alone sometimes is OK, but is not good for extending periods of time. At least not for a gal that who had a house full of love and laughter (and some tears too) for 20 or 30 years and all of sudden, it’s empty. You just don’t go from full speed ahead to zero without a strange feeling inside.

Then of course, there is plenty of advise too. “Why not join a health club?” “You could get another husband. We’ll look around for you. I think there is a brother who needs someone to help take care of his kids and his mom while he is working. You want me to make some calls?” (NO. I don’t)

“Well, you know – LIFE GOES ON.” “Get involved in activities outside the home. Meet new people. You have to move on.”

You know what? I suddenly find myself looking forward to just going home and sitting in my husband’s chair. That is my safe place. I don’t want to go anywhere. Just me and Garfield.

Well, I guess I do need to get cat food for Garfield (my Siamese cat). And I wouldn’t mind some tuna fish salad right about now.

Maybe my family is right. I need to get out. Go somewhere. Not too far. Just go down to the mall. Maybe look at shoes (who doesn’t need a new pair of shoes and maybe a purse to go with them?). Yeah.. good idea.

So, OK – I go to the mall. I walk in, first thing I hear the music (I can’t stand mall music). Then I only walk a few more steps and then I smell it – the smell of fresh buttered popcorn.. Oh no. I can’t do this. I have to go back now – NOW.

I'm driving back home from the mall, I see blinking lights of a cop car right behind me. He wants me to pull over. I know I am going to get ticket. No left turn signal light, license plates expired and then he sees my inspection sticker is expired. Oh just great! Just what I need.

As the policeman came up to my window, I started to panic. "Yaa Allah! I think he is looking at my hijab (Muslim women's scarf) and he hates Islam or something"

I have my driver's license, insurance and car registration ready to hand him. He looks at my license (my picture even has my hijab in it).

He's looking at me, "Why hasn't this car been kept up with inspections and license plates?"

I say something like, "My husband used to do all this and.." I start to cry. I don’t want to. I have to look away and try to be calm. But it just hit me all of a sudden. I just now realize how alone I really am and now nobody here to help me.

The policeman looks at my driver's license and then he asks me, "What was your husband's name?"

I told him.

He looked kind of strange for a moment and then he asked me, "Did he wear a small white cap all the time and had a white beard and a real big smile?"

"Yes, he did" I said slowly. (How did this policeman know about my husband? Was I in some kind of trouble now?)

A smile stretched across his face, then he looked at me again and said, "Your husband was a very kind man. I knew him. He used to come by the donut shop over on Route 1 some time ago. He helped me clean up the mess when I spilled my coffee all over."

Oh yes, that was just like my husband. He never met a stranger and he was every ready to help anybody.

"So then we got to talking about life, and what our purpose is here on earth. You know what? I had never really thought about it before. But what he said made a lot of sense. Several times after that, when I would see him, he would give me a pamphlet or a small booklet about things Muslims believe. I always took time to read and think about what he was saying."

"His talks with me are still in my mind today. The way he would just simply say something about the Quran or Muhammad's teachings - it struck me - this man really knows what he believes and why he believes it. I wish I had his confidence in my faith."

"You know he even called me 'brother' and said we are all 'brothers and sisters' in humanity because we all come from Adam. Ever since I feel like we really are all one people. I like calling people my 'brother' or 'sister'. Is it OK to call you my 'sister'?

Well I was probably old enough to be his mother, but - sure - why not?

"Sister, there was one thing he told me about and he was going to get one for me. But I didn't see him again. That was back sometime last year. He said he would give me a translation of the Karein (Quran)." 
- I corrected him, "QUR-AN" He moved his mouth as if saying Quran without any sound.

You know, I could almost see my husband while this man was talking about him. He was always giving dawah (explaining Islam) everywhere we went. He never minded answering questions and explaining things in simple ways to people. I have seen his stand there and talk for as long as someone would listen. He enjoyed sharing his faith with others and they seemed to enjoy it too.

Suddenly I realized the policeman was asking me about the Quran. Oh my! I don't know how to give dawah. I can't talk about all this with him. What do I say?

Then he made it easy for me, "Sister, could I ask you to help me locate a copy of the Quran?"

"Sure, no problem" I said.

Where was I going to get a Quran to give him? My husband always took care of those things, not me. Oh dear. Why did I give my promise to this policeman to give him something I didn't have? What was I to do?

Then he glanced at a sticker on the inside of the car door. "Sister, did you know your car has not been service for over 30,000 miles?"

"Ahhh, no. But I'll take care of it, inshallah (God Willing)". I hoped this was not another type of violation.

He continued as though he didn't hear me, "If you don't mind, I would like to take care of this, if you let me. Kind of help out my old friend's car. Is it OK?"

OK? I guess. Sure. Why not? OK. Yeah. That would be great. Anything you say.

He pulled out his cell phone and made a quick call. Then he smiled and said, "It's all taken care of. My brother's gas station is just down the block and he says if we bring it in now, he can have you out in about 30 minutes. How does that sound?"

Well, it sounds fine. But how much is all of this going to cost? I guess I should be glad he is not going to give me any tickets. But still, I only have a little cash on me and I hate to use my card for anything like this. Still, he is being nice and he wants to know about Islam, even asked for a Quran - Yeah, sure. Let's go to his brother's place and see what it will cost, I guess...

It was just down the street and his brother really did come right out and give my car immediate attention. He began with a full inspection, replaced a burned out tail-light, check the emissions (what are emissions anyway?). He changed the oil, filters, fan belts and even put air in all the tires. The he started writing up the bill.

Oh boy. Here we go. I knew it was coming. But I guess I just have to start taking care of things like this.

The man at the gas station gave the bill to the policeman, who just smiled and stuck it in his pocket. He turned around and came toward me, and asked me if there was anything else I would like for the car...

Huh? What's going on here?

"Don't worry about it, my sister. This is for your husband. I know he would have done it for my wife."

I tried not to cry. Really, he was right - my husband would do anything for people. But now the tears were burning in my eyes and I had to look down quickly. This was just too much. Here I thought this man was drumming up business for his brother and all along he was trying to help me. This was just like when my husband was still alive. People were always doing things for us without even us asking.

The officer wrote something on a piece of paper and handed it to me. It was a phone number and address.

"Sister, here is my phone number if you need anything. If anyone bothers you or if you have any problems or you just need to talk to someone, my wife Mary and I are both ready to do anything you ask. And if you get a chance or find someone who could help me find a Quran (he said it correctly this time) I would really appreciate a chance to learn more about the religion of you and your husband. I really do believe there is only One God, and from what I can see in you and your husband, I would sure like to learn more about the prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him).

A few days later, I found that piece of paper in my purse and thought about calling. But what would I say? I didn't have a Quran to give him and I didn't even know his wife, except her name is Mary. What am I going to do if his wife answers? "Hi, you don't know me, but your husband just fixed my car and told me to call?"
NO WAY. I am not that stupid. I put the phone number down by the phone and dropped down in my husband’s old chair.

OK, what do I do now?

Should I try to phone some of my husband’s old friends who used to go with him for dawah?
Maybe go to the Halal book store and look for a Quran to give to this man? But what would his wife think?
And then how about the chatroom where my husband used to help out? But what would I do there?

I thought about joining up and doing some things on But again, what am I really qualified to do?

I did visit the website for sisters that my husband used to recommend for women:
There is so much to read and see. They have videos, audios and even a question/answer forum that helped me a lot.

Here is what I figured out – I feel it takes as long as it takes before you even get to a point of feeling normal – whatever that means – again. I don’t think you ever get over a great loss – but you somehow re-invent yourself as you go along.

Don’t let anyone rush you. Things will get better. But in your own time frame. Keep up your salat (prayers), keep making dua (supplications) and remember to call the kids once in a while (don’t make them crazy with calls every few hours). Take some pictures of the cat (get a cat), and email them to your kids.

Be sure to listen to Quran every morning and every night. This is one of the best things anyone can do, anywhere.

And be sure to watch some videos with Baba Ali, Abdur Raheem Green and Yusuf Estes. Those guys really make you think. O yeah, and listen to Zain Bhikha’s latest nasheeds. That always helps me. Don’t you love “Allah Knows” when Zaid sings it? This really makes me feel like Allah is taking care of the whole thing.

Can I add a small word of advice from someone who has been there and done that?

Dear sister in Islam, make the most out of what you have while you still have it. You might think you don’t need that old guy, maybe even think you could get by a lot better without him. But it’s just not true. You will come to know – O yeah, real fast – just how much you meant to each other and how badly you need to hear him call you with his latest idea or to complain about something, just one more time. But now it’s too late. He’s gone.

One last little piece of advice I want to add here. There is a rumor that it takes you a year to get over a death. Where does this nonsense come from? I have no idea. But it is not true.

Actually, the fact is, I don’t want to “get over” him. I just want to be next to him again, just one more time. I'll even laugh at his dumb jokes - I promise.

I know - I’ll have to wait. Wait until the Next Life. And maybe, just maybe with Allah’s Mercy, and His forgiveness, we’ll be reunited, together again – in Allah’s Paradise.

Oh Allah, forgive me for not taking better care of that old guy. I miss him. Take good care of him, please Allah, until I can be with him again...

I really do miss him...
Article taken from
May Allah reunite them in Paradise

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Top 5 regrets at the time of death

"Nurse reveals the top 5 regrets people make on their deathbed"

For many years I worked in palliative care. My patients were those who had gone home to die. Some incredibly special times were shared. I was with them for the last three to twelve weeks of their lives. People grow a lot when they are faced with their own mortality.

I learnt never to underestimate someone’s capacity for growth. Some changes were phenomenal. Each experienced a variety of emotions, as expected, denial, fear, anger, remorse, more denial and eventually acceptance. Every single patient found their peace before they departed though, every one of them.

When questioned about any regrets they had or anything they would do differently, common themes surfaced again and again. Here are the most common five:

1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.
This was the most common regret of all. When people realize that their life is almost over and look back clearly on it, it is easy to see how many dreams have gone unfulfilled. Most people had not honoured even a half of their dreams and had to die knowing that it was due to choices they had made, or not made.

It is very important to try and honour at least some of your dreams along the way. From the moment that you lose your health, it is too late. Health brings a freedom very few realise, until they no longer have it.

2. I wish I didn’t work so hard.
This came from every male patient that I nursed. They missed their children’s youth and their partner’s companionship. Women also spoke of this regret. But as most were from an older generation, many of the female patients had not been breadwinners. All of the men I nursed deeply regretted spending so much of their lives on the treadmill of a work existence.

By simplifying your lifestyle and making conscious choices along the way, it is possible to not need the income that you think you do. And by creating more space in your life, you become happier and more open to new opportunities, ones more suited to your new lifestyle.

3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.
Many people suppressed their feelings in order to keep peace with others. As a result, they settled for a mediocre existence and never
became who they were truly capable of becoming. Many developed illnesses relating to the bitterness and resentment they carried as a

We cannot control the reactions of others. However, although people may initially react when you change the way you are by speaking honestly, in the end it raises the relationship to a whole new and healthier level. Either that or it releases the unhealthy relationship from your life. Either way, you win.

4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.
Often they would not truly realise the full benefits of old friends until their dying weeks and it was not always possible to track them down. Many had become so caught up in their own lives that they had let golden friendships slip by over the years. There were many deep regrets about not giving friendships the time and effort that they deserved. Everyone misses their friends when they are dying.

It is common for anyone in a busy lifestyle to let friendships slip. But when you are faced with your approaching death, the physical
details of life fall away. People do want to get their financial affairs in order if possible. But it is not money or status that holds the true importance for them. They want to get things in order more for the benefit of those they love. Usually though, they are too ill and weary to ever manage this task. It is all comes down to love and relationships in the end.
That is all that remains in the final weeks, love and relationships.

5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.
This is a surprisingly common one. Many did not realise until the end that happiness is a choice. They had stayed stuck in old patterns and habits. The so-called ‘comfort’ of familiarity overflowed into their emotions, as well as their physical lives. Fear of change had them pretending to others, and to their selves, that they were content. When deep within, they longed to laugh properly and have silliness in their life again. When you are on your deathbed, what others think of you is a long way from your mind. How wonderful to be able to let go and smile again, long before you are dying.

Source :