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Thursday, March 13, 2008

Friday Nasiha » Issue 468 - Collective Work; Joking, Sarcasm, Irony; Necessities and Needs; Please donate

In the Name of Allah, The Most Beneficent, The Most Merciful
F R I D A Y N A S I H A Issue 468
Rabi-al-Awwal 6, 1429 A.H. -- March 14, 2008 C.E.
Young Muslims -
n Living the Quran - Al-Saff (The Ranks) Chapter 61: Verse 4
n Understanding the Prophet's Life

- Joking, Sarcasm & Irony

n Blindspot! - Necessities and Needs
n Maintainer's Message - $5 a month! | Forward
Living the Quran

Al-Saff (The Ranks)
Chapter 61: Verse 4

Collective Work
"Allah loves those who fight in His cause in battle array, as if they were a solid cemented structure."

It is not enough for Islam's wellbeing that volunteering individuals should work separately and in scattered areas, though their efforts will be added to their balance on the Day of Judgment, for Allah shall not waste the effort of a man or woman, and everyone shall be rewarded for his deeds according to his intention and perfection of his work.

Individual work, under the contemporary circumstances of the Muslim Nation, will not be enough for bridging over the gap and realizing the aspired hope. Collective work is a must, and it is ordained by religion and necessitated by reality.

Religion advocates "the sense of congregating" and opposes "straying". Allah's hand is with collective effort, and he who strays shall stray into Hell. It is only the stray sheep that the wolf devours. A believer to another believer is like one firm brickwork - each part supporting the other. Cooperation in righteousness and piety is one of the obligations of religion; and the mutual teaching of truth and patience is one of the preconditions of saving oneself from loss in earthly life and the Hereafter.

The sheer state of affairs makes it impossible for a fruitful work to be done individually. It takes two hands to clap, and one is weak by himself, strong by his fellows. Great achievements are only made through concerted efforts, and decisive battles are won only through the unity of hands.

"Priorities of The Islamic Movement in The Coming Phase" - Yusuf Al-Qaradawi

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Understanding the Prophet's Life

Joking, Sarcasm & Irony

Deliberate lies and falsehoods must not be employed as a means to make people laugh.

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: "Woe to the person who gives a speech to people and lies to make them laugh. Woe to him, woe to him." [Sunan Abî Dâwûd (4990), Sunan al-Tirmidhî (2315), and Sunan al-Dârimî (2702)]

Sarcasm and irony are rhetorical devices in the language which communicate meanings that are clearly understood from their contexts.

Sarcasm is to say something with an underlying insulting or mocking implication. Irony is a form of expression in which an understood implicit meaning is concealed or contradicted by the explicit meaning of the expression. Sarcasm is often used in conjunction with irony. What matters is the honesty of the meaning that is being conveyed by the communication, not the literal implications of the words.

For instance, a person is writing something down. The onlooker can see this, but asks: "Are you writings something?"

The person who is writing responds to the onlooker's question by saying: "No, I am playing football."

What he means is: "Of course I am writing, and it is silly of you to ask." This is the meaning that is communicated and understood.

In English, there are some phrases that are always ironic. Consider when a person says: "Big deal" or "Wise guy".

Therefore, ironic and sarcastic statements are not lies, any more than figurative speech is a lie. "He was a lion on the football field" is a figurative statement, not a lie - though certainly the football payer is not a great cat.

In the same way, irony and sarcasm are recognized modes of speech which convey an intended meaning understood by both the speaker and the listener.

Irony and sarcasm are therefore quite different than a joke that is a deliberate lie, where the teller of the joke means to communicate a falsehood. Whether or not the listener is aware that it is a lie, what matters is that the speaker fully intends to communicate by what he says a meaning that is false, with the intention of provoking laughter on account of that falsehood.

"" - Fatwa by`Abd al-Wahhâb al-Turayrî

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Necessities and Needs

Scholars of Islamic Law make a distinction between matters that are prohibited for their inherent evil and matters that are prohibited only because they have the potential to lead up to the perpetration of an inherent evil. For instance, murder, fornication, and drug abuse are prohibited in their own right. By contrast, a woman showing her face in public is prohibited – by the scholars who regard it as prohibited – because of the temptation that it might cause and that might lead to the sin of fornication or adultery. The woman is not required to veil her face for the mere sake of covering it.

This is an important distinction in Islamic Law. Things that are prohibited in their own right cannot be permitted except in cases of dire necessity (darûrah). For instance, a person may not drink wine. However, if that person is choking on something and can only find wine to save himself, he may drink it out of necessity. By contrast, things that are prohibited only because they can lead to other unlawful activities are allowed for any valid need (hâjah).

Ibn al-Qayyim explains this principle in I`lâm al-Muwaqqi`în:

Prohibitions regarding the means to wrongdoing are not like things that are prohibited for their own sake. Prohibitions regarding the means to wrongdoing will be lifted for a valid need (hâjah). As for things that are prohibited for their own sake, their prohibition is not lifted except in cases of dire necessity (darûrah).

"Lifting the Veil – A Consideration of Circumstances" - Sâmî al-Mâjid, professor at al-Imâm Islamic University, Riyadh

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Maintainer's Message

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Friday, March 7, 2008

Friday Nasiha :: Issue 467 - True Remembrance; Prophetic Wisdom; Controlling Impulses; Please donate

In the Name of Allah, The Most Beneficent, The Most Merciful
F R I D A Y N A S I H A Issue 467
Safar 29, 1429 A.H. -- March 7, 2008 C.E.

Young Muslims -

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Merits of the month of Dhul-Hijjah

December 12, 2007 was the first day of the month of Dhul-Hijjah, the 12th month of the Islamic calendar in Mumbai and surrounding areas. This is the month of sacrifice and Hajj, and is very auspicious. The ninth day of this blessed month falls on Thursday, December 20, and 'Id -ul-Adha on Friday, December 21, 2007.

Allah swears an oath by the first ten nights of Dhul-Hijjah, and swearing an oath by something is indicative of its importance and great benefit. Allah says (interpretation of the meaning): "By the dawn; by the ten nights" (Surah al-Fajr 89:1-2). The "ten nights" refer to those of Dhul-Hijjah.

Ibn 'Abbas reports that the Messenger of Allaah (sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam) said, "No good deeds done on other days are superior to those done on these days [meaning the ten days of Dhul-Hijjah]." (Related by Bukhari)

Ibn 'Umar that the Messenger of Allaah (sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam) said, "There is no day more honorable in Allah's sight and no acts more beloved therein to Allah than those in these ten days. So say tahleel (There is no deity worthy of worship but Allah: Laa ilaaha illallaah), takbeer (Allah is the greatest: Allaahu Akbar) and tahmeed (All praise is due to Allah: alhamdulillaah) a lot [on those days]." (Related by Ahmad)

Abu Hurayrah relates that the Messenger of Allaah (sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam) said, "There are no days more loved to Allaah for you to worship Him therein than the ten days of Dhul-Hijjah. Fasting any day during it is equivalent to fasting one year and to offer salatul tahajjud (late-night prayer) during one of its nights is like performing the late night prayer on the night of power [ i.e., Lailatul Qadr]." (Related by Tirmidhi, Ibn Majah, and Baihaqi)

Fasting on the day of 'Arafah (9th Dhul-Hijjah)

Abu Qatadah reported that the Messenger of Allaah (sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam) said, "Fasting on the day of 'Arafah is an expiation for two years, the year preceding it and the year following it." (Related by Muslim)

Hafsah reported, "There are five things that the Messenger (sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam) never abandoned: fasting the day of 'Ashurah [10th Muharram], fasting the [first] ten [days of Dhul-Hijjah], fasting three days of every month and praying two rak'ah before the dawn prayer." (Related by Ahmad and Nasa'i)

For those who intend to sacrifice

Those who intend to sacrifice are recommended to refrain from clipping nails and shaving/cutting hair.

Umm Salamah reported that the Prophet (sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam) said, "If anyone has in his possession a sacrificial animal to offer as sacrifice [on 'Id al-Adhaa], he should not get his hair cut and nails trimmed after he has entered the first days of Dhul-Hijjah." (Related by Muslim)

Umm Salamah reported that the Prophet (sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam) said, "He who has a sacrificial animal with him whom [he intends] to offer as sacrifice, and he enters the month of Dhul-Hijjah, he should not get his hair cut or nails trimmed until he has sacrificed the animal." (Related by Muslim)

Those who cannot sacrifice an animal are also recommended to refrain from clipping nails and shaving/cutting hair. This will entitle them to a reward equal to those who sacrifice, Insha Allah.

Shared by Brother Shamlan

Saturday, October 6, 2007

How to seek Laylat ul-Qadr

Laylat ul-Qadr is the most blessed night. A person who misses it has indeed missed a great amount of good. If a believing person is zealous to obey his Lord and increase the good deeds in his record, he should strive to encounter this night and to pass it in worship and obedience. If this is facilitated for him, all of his previous sins will be forgiven.

Praying Qiyaam

It is recommended to make a long Qiyaam prayer during the nights on which Laylat ul-Qadr could fall. This is indicated in many hadeeths, such as the following:

Abu Dharr (radhiallahu `anhu) relates:

"We fasted with Allah's Messenger (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) in Ramadaan. He did not lead us (in qiyaam) at all until there were seven (nights of Ramadaan) left. Then he stood with us (that night - in prayer) until one third of the night had passed. He did not pray with us on the sixth. On the fifth night, he prayed with us until half of the night had passed. So we said, 'Allah's Messenger! Wouldn't you pray with us the whole night?' He replied:

'Whoever stands in prayer with the imaam until he (the imaam) concludes the prayer, it is recorded for him that he prayed the whole night.'…" [Recorded by Ibn Abi Shaybah, Abu Dawud, at-Tirmithi (who authenticated it), an-Nasa'i, Ibn Majah, at-Tahawi (in Sharhu Ma`an il-Athar, Ibn Nasr, al-Faryabi, and al-Bayhaqi. Their isnad is authentic.]

[Point of benefit: Abu Dawud mentioned: "I heard Ahmad being asked, 'Do you like for a man to pray with the people or by himself during Ramadan?' He replied, 'Pray with the people' I also heard him say, 'I would prefer for one to pray (qiyaam) with the imaam and to pray witr with him as well, for the Prophet (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) said: "When a man prays with the imaam until he concludes, it is recorded that he prayed the rest of that night." [Masaa'il]]

Abu Hurayrah (radhiallahu `anhu) narrated that the Messenger (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) said:

"Whoever stands (in qiyaam) in Laylat ul-Qadr [and it is facilitated for him] out of faith and expectation (of Allah's reward), will have all of his previous sins forgiven." [Al-Bukhari and Muslim; the addition "and it is facilitated for him" is recorded by Ahmad from the report of `Ubaadah Bin as-Samit; it means that he is permitted to be among the sincere worshippers during that blessed night.]

Making Supplications

It is also recommended to make extensive supplication on this night. `A'ishah (radhiallahu `anha) reported that she asked Allah's Messenger (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam), "O Messenger of Allah! If I knew which night is Laylat ul-Qadr, what should I say during it?" And he instructed her to say:

"Allahumma innaka `afuwwun tuhibbul `afwa fa`fu `annee - O Allah! You are forgiving, and you love forgiveness. So forgive me." [Recorded by Ahmad, Ibn Majah, and at-Tirmithi. Verified to be authentic by Al-Albani]

Abandoning Worldly Pleasures for the Sake of Worship

It is further recommended to spend more time in worship during the nights on which Laylat ul-Qadr is likely to be. This calls for abandoning many worldly pleasures in order to secure the time and thoughts solely for worshipping Allah. `A'ishah (radhiallahu `anha) reported:

"When the (last) ten started, the Prophet (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) would tighten his izaar (i.e. he stayed away from his wives in order to have more time for worship), spend the whole night awake (in prayer), and wake up his family." [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]

And she said:

"Allah's Messenger (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) used to exert more (in worship) on the last ten than on other nights." [Muslim]

Shaykh Muhammad Nasir-ud-Deen al-Albani

Zakaat ul-Fitr -- don't forget!

--What is Zakaat ul-Fitr?

Zakaat ul-Fitr (often referred to as Sadaqat ul-Fitr) is the name given to charity which is given at the end of the fast of Ramadaan. The significant role played by Zakaah in the circulation of wealth within the Islamic society is also played by the Zakaat ul-Fitr.

Zakaat ul-Fitr is a duty which is waajib (obligatory) on every Muslim, whether male or female, minor or adult as long as he/she has the means to do so.

--Purpose of Zakaat ul-Fitr

The main purpose of Zakaat ul-Fitr is to provide those who fasted with the means of making up for their errors during the month of fasting. Zakaat ul-Fitr also provides the poor with a means with which they can celebrate the festival of breaking the fast (`Id ul-Fitr) along with the rest of the Muslims.

Ibn Abbaas reported, "The Prophet (sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam) made Zakaat ul-Fitr compulsory so that those who fasted may be purified of their idle deeds and shameful talk (committed during Ramadaan) and so that the poor may be fed." [Abu Dawud and Ibn Majah]

Hence, the goal of Zakaat ul-Fitr is the spiritual development of the Believers. By making them give up some of their wealth, the believers are taught the higher moral characteristics of generosity, compassion (sympathy for the unfortunate), gratitude to God and the righteousness. But, since Islaam does not neglect man's material need, part of the goal of Zakaat ul-Fitr is the economic well-being of the poorer members of society.

--When is Zakaat ul-Fitr due?

Ibn Abbaas reported that the Prophet (sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam) said, "If one pays Zakaat ul-Fitr before the Salaah (i.e., the 'Id prayer), it is considered an accepted Zakaah, if he pays it after the Salaah, it is considered an ordinary charity." [Abu Dawud]

Zakaat ul-Fitr thus becomes obligatory from sunset on the last day of fasting and remains obligatory until the beginning of Salaat ul-'Id (i.e. shortly after sunrise on the following day). However, it can be paid prior to the above mentioned period, as many of the Sahaabah (companions of the Prophet(sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam)) used to pay Zakaat ul-Fitr a couple days before the `Id.

Naafi' reported that the Prophet's companion Ibn `Umar used to give it to those who would accept it and the people used to give it a day or two before the `Id. [al-Bukhari]

Ibn `Umar reported that the Prophet (sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam) order that it (Zakaat ul-Fitr) be given before people go to make the Salaah (of 'Id).

One who forgets to pay this Zakaat ul-Fitr on time should do so as soon as possible even though it will not be counted as Zakaat ul-Fitr (it will be counted as Sadaqah -- see hadith above).

--Amount to be given as Zakaat ul-Fitr

The amount of Zakaah is the same for everyone regardless of their different income brackets. The minimum amount is one Saa` (a volume measure corresponding approximately to the volume of 5 lb of good wheat) of food, grain or dried fruit for each member of the family.

Ibn `Umar reported that the Prophet (sallallaahu `alaihi wa sallam) made Zakaat ul-Fitr compulsory on every slave, freeman, male, female, young and old among the Muslims: one Saa` of dried dates or one Saa` of barely. [al-Bukhari]

The head of the household may pay the required amount for the other members. Abu Sa'eed al-Khudree said, "On behalf of our young and old, free men and slaves, we used to take out during Allaah's Messenger's (sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam) lifetime one Saa` of grain, cheese or raisins". [Muslim]

According to Hanafi scholars, instead of giving grain as Zakaat ul-Fitr, one can pay the equivalent in currency. Each share of Zakaat ul-Fitr has been calculated to be Rs. 35/- for Mumbai and surrounding areas for this year (1428 H).

Zakaat ul-Fitr is to be given to the same eight categories of people (mentioned in the Qur'an, 9:60) as in the other types of Zakaah. Some scholars say that the poor and the needy are the most deserving ones since the Prophet (sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam) said that it had "...the purpose of providing food for the needy." (see hadith above)

Shared By brother Shamlan.