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Islamic Fiqh- Ritual Acts of Worship- Salah (prayer)- Lesson 12: Confirmed and unconfirmed sunnan
In the Name of Allah, The Most Gracious, Most Merciful  

Al-Fajir Sunnah is the most confirmed Sunnah:

Dear brothers, with regard to Salah and Nawafil (The acts of worship that are not obligatory which the Prophet PBUH performed wither regularly or occasionally), it is reported in Maraqi Al-Falah (The High Ranks of Success) that the two Rak'at before Al-Fajr obligatory Salah are Sunnah Mu'akkadah (it refers to any voluntary act of worship which the Prophet PBUH continuously performed and almost never abandoned). Better yet, they are the most confirmed among Sunnan to such an extent that some scholars said that if someone enters the Masjid while Imam is leading Al-Fajr Salah, and if this person knows for sure that it will take the Imam a while to end his Salah, he must offer two fast Rak'at of Sunnat Al-Fajr in order to get the blessing the Prophet PBUH mentioned. Furthermore, Al-Hasan narrated that Abu Hanifah, may Allah have mercy upon his soul, said, "Offering Sunnat Al-Fajr in the sitting position without an excuse is unacceptable".

(Narrated Abu Hurairah: The Prophet (PBUH) said: Do not omit them (the two Rak'at before the dawn prayer) even if you are driven away by the horses.)

[Abu Dawood, on the authority of Abi Hurairah]

This means that one should not, under any condition, miss this Nafl (singular of Nawafil), and as it is mentioned in the Hadith, "even if you are driven away by the horses".

(A'ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) reported: The Prophet (PBUH) said, "The two Rak'ah before the dawn (Fajr) prayer are better than this world and all it contains.")

[Muslim, on the authority of A'ishah]

A brother once said to me, "Subhana Allah, Fajr Salah in Masjid has a special sweet taste that one cannot find in any other Salah", so I commented by mentioning the following Ayah: 

﴾ Verily, the rising by night (for Tahajjud prayer) is very hard and most potent and good for governing (the soul), and most suitable for (understanding) the Word (of Allah). Verily, there is for you by day prolonged occupation with ordinary duties,﴿ 

[Al-Muzzammil, 6-7]

The connection, which is established between man and his Lord during the night, is very special and influential and to this meaning the words "Ashaddu Wat'an" refer. On the other hand, Allah the Almighty describes night prayers as "Aqwamo Qeela" which means that it is healthier in terms of knowledge. Namely, Allah the Almighty may inspire the heart of the Musalli (The one who offers prayers) with interpretations of the Noble Quran that may never cross his mind.

Salah is a school unto itself:

If we go deeper, Salah is a school unto itself. When you recite Allah's Words in your prayers, you may comprehend new interpretations which cannot be found in any book:

﴾ So be afraid of Allah; and Allah teaches you. And Allah is the All-Knower of each and everything.﴿ 


[Al-Baqarah, 282]

﴾ and whosoever believes in Allah, He guides his heart [to the true Faith with certainty, i.e. what has befallen him was already written for him by Allah from the Qadar (Divine Preordainments)], and Allah is the All-Knower of everything.﴿ 


[At-Taghabun, 11]

(The two Rak'at before the dawn (Fajr) prayer are better than this world and all it contains.)

As-Sunan Al-Mu'akkadah are the two Rak'at before Fajr, the four Rak'at before Zuhr, the two Rak'at after Zuhr,  the two Rak'at after Maghrib, the two Rak'at after Isha' and the four Rak'at before and after Jumu'ah Salah (Friday prayer). Again, Sunan Mu'akkadah refer to the supererogatory prayers that the Prophet PBUH continuously performed and almost never abandoned.

The different kinds of Sunnan Mu'akkadah and Sunan Mandoobah:

An-Nawafil consists of two kinds of prayers: Salah Mu'akkadah and Salah Mandoobah (recommended, because the Prophet PBUH did not offer them regularly (sometimes he did not offer them) unlike the Mu'akkadah which the Prophet PBUH regularly used to offer regularly.

As-Sunan Al Mu'akkadah are the two Rak'at before Fajr, the four Rak'at before Zuhr, the two Rak'at after Zuhr, the two Rak'at after Maghrib, the two Rak'at after Isha' and the four Rak'at before and after Jumu'ah Salah (Friday prayer). 

As for the four Rak'at before Al-Asr Salah, they are among As-Sunan Al–Mandoobah. In other words, if man has extra time and he is comfortable, he may offer these four Rak'at before Asr Salah as Sunnah Mandoobah.

Also, the four Rak'at before Isha' Salah are among As-Sunan Al-Mandoobah not Al-Mu'akkadah, in addition to the four Rak'at after Isha' (two of them are Mu'akkadah, while the other two are Mandoobah). Amongst As-Sunan Al–Mandoobah are the six Rak'at after Maghrib Salah, which are called "Al-Awwabeen Salah". These are the acts of worship that are Sunnah Mu'akkadah and Mandoobah.

I would like to repeat this point one more time: The two Rak'at before Fajr Salah are the most confirmed ones, and they should not been offered in the sitting position unless there is an excuse. Also, if you reach the Imam in Al-Masjid leading Fajr Salah, and he is in the first Rak'ah, offer the two Rak'at of Sunnah then pray with the Imam Al-Fajr Salah, because the Prophet PBUH was so keen on them, given he had never spoken of his own desires.

(The two Rak'at before the dawn (Fajr) prayer are better than this world and all it contains.)

Can you imagine how important these two Rak'at are? Offering them is like owning a hotel whose daily income is 100.000, for the Prophet PBUH said:

(The two Rak'at before the dawn (Fajr) prayer are better than this world and all it contains.)

They are more valuable than owning all the stores in the market. They are, as said by the Prophet PBUH, better than this world, and all it contains, because the worldly life is evanescent, whereas the Hereafter is eternal. Death puts an end to the worldly life, while establishing a connection with Allah the Almighty and gaining His Mercy is your supply on the Day of Resurrection.

By the way, when you offer four Rak'at of Sunnah Mu'akkadah or Ghair Mu'akkadah (it refers to any voluntary act of worship which the Prophet PBUH sometimes performed and sometimes abandoned), you should recite a short Surat after Al-Fatiha in all the four Rak'at, and you should not read the opening Du'a on the third Rak'ah. 

In another lecture, I will talk about greeting Al-Masjid, Duha Salah and praying all night long.

The virtue of Tasbeeh  and Tahmeed:

Let us move to another selected chapter from Ihya' Uloom Ad-Deen. Last lecture we have discussed the virtues of Tahleel (Saying la Ilaha illa Allah [There is no Deity worthy of worship but Allah Alone]), and we focused on them as the first phrase that should be said in Islam.

Today we will discuss the virtue of Tasbeeh (it is a form of Dhikr that involves repetitive utterances of short sentences of praising and glorifying Allah by saying Subhana Allah: Allah is Perfect) and Tahmeed (Praising Allah). Some scholars said that Tasbeeh is a form of Tanzeeh", and Tanzeeh means that it does not befit the Exalted Divine Character of Allah to have any flaw. However, this is one aspect of Tasbeeh, and restricting it (uttering the words Subhana Allah with the tongue using the rosary) is a passive performance of Tasbeeh. Actually, the positive and active performance of Tasbeeh is Tamjeed Allah the Almighty by sensing the manifestation of His Most Beautiful Names, the Perfection of His Creation, His Majestic Wisdom and His Justice, and this is the real meaning of Tasbeeh.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Accordingly, Tasbeeh is to reflect on the Different Beautiful Names of Allah and to spend the time in getting to know Allah the Almighty. For instance, if you see a mighty mountain, you say, "Subhana Allah" (for creating it). 

In summer, one of us spends a lot of money to buy an air condition, and he is ready to pay expensive power bills in order to enjoy the cool breeze in his room. In comparison, how much will the natural breeze, which Allah sends to the entire earth, cost? A natural cool breeze from Allah is better than all air conditioning systems on earth. Who sends this nice breeze when the climate is hot? Who creates rain? Allah the Almighty does. A man once told me, "The rain at the end of summer costs more than a billion." It is because this rain is useful to the crops and will bring hefty profits.

Amongst Allah's creation are the rain, the mountains, the vast seas, the beautiful animals and the ornamental fish which is not for eating. Who gave the ornamental fish its colors? Some kinds of this fish are transparent, others are dark black, some of them has tiny legs, others has fins, some of them are conic and spindle, while others are flat, and there are many other breathtaking shapes. When you see all that, you say Subhana Allah!

A little boy can make a camel kneel down, and your response is saying, Subhana Allah! Who subjugated this camel to man? Allah the Almighty did. Some animals show affability in the presence of people like lambs, and those adorable animals like to be petted, whereas other animals are repulsive. Who made the lamb adorable? Allah the Almighty did. 

Upon looking at your son, you realize beyond doubt that he was nothing but a drop of water, so Who has turned him into a whole human being? Allah the Almighty has. 

I was walking by a primary school once when hundreds of students got out of it, and I exclaimed at that moment, "Subhana Allah! There is no resemblance between them at all, and each child has different features", so Who gave them their different physical looks when they were in their mothers' wombs? Allah the Almighty did. Hence, "Subhana Allah" embraces the meaning of Tamjeed (glorification of Allah).

Shedding light on the meaning of Tasbeeh (transcendence) and Tamjeed:

You should say Subhana Allah every time you see a Sign which manifests Allah's Greatness, Kindness, Wisdom, Omnipotence, Bestowal, Justice and Clemency. 
The one who dares to badmouth religion should pay heed, because at any moment Allah the Almighty may destroy his physical strength turning him into a paralyzed person if he has a stroke. Yet, due to Allah's Forbearance, this man is given a chance (to repent). Subhana Allah! He is the Ever-Forbearing. Hence, the phrase Subhana Allah has the meaning of reflecting on Allah's Most Beautiful Names. 

Of course Tanzeeh comes before Tamjeed.  Unfortunately, these words, which the Noble Prophet PBUH conveyed them lost their meanings, for every person says "Subhana Allah without thinking of this phrase's indications, and had he comprehend its meaning, he would have followed the Right Path.
Subhana Allah (Allah is Perfect), Al-Hamdulillah (praise be to Allah), la Ilaha illa Allah (there is no Deity worthy of worshi but Allah Alone), Allahu Akbar (Allah is The Great) and Lahawla wala Quwata Illa Billah (there is no might nor power except with Allah) are powerful words, but because (the majority of) people are heedless, they utter these words as laudations, keeping themselves very far from their true content and indications. Hence, Tasbeeh entails reflecting on everything, whereas Tanzeeh is to negate that Allah the Almighty has any flaw. 

Tasbeeh can be performed after considering this example: If someone runs into an old friend and asks him, "Do you recognize me?", and the old friend answers, "Yes, of course I do", do you know the process that takes place in this old friend's memory? Actually, a very complicated process takes place. The memory views all the saved images (which are between 200 and 500.000 images) and compares them with the face of this person in less than a second until the memory finds the match, and so this old friend recognizes him. The instant reaction of this person is to say, "Subhana Allah!" 

Another example is man's ability to walk in the same way going and coming to his house. He does that without paying any effort to think of the way he walks on.  Who puts the ability of automatically repeating habitual activities in man? Allah the Almighty does.

Allah's Signs that denotes His Greatness:

Man sometimes performs daily activities subconsciously, such as putting on his cloths, shaving and heading to work. Also, he can perform other complicated activities at home without thinking, and he can do them while his mind is busy with something else. Moreover, he can drive his car automatically, being able  to pay attention to other cars while he is talking to the passenger next to him. This activities show how Allah, Exalted and Sublime be He, has honored man by providing him with this ability. 

Some complicated functions which man can do consciously become autonomic. For instance, man eats food unaware of the complicated process in his digestive system starting from the saliva and the esophagus whose peristalsis is so strong that it can actually enables a person to swallow food or water while upside down. If someone goes to the gym, and he dangles upside down using his legs, then his friend gives him water to drink, this water will go right to his stomach against gravity, but how can this happen? It happens because of the slow contraction of the striated muscle in the upper part of the esophagus. Hence, all you can say about that is "Subhana Allah", which s is Tasbeeh.

Man is able to do any balance pose due to the inner ear (two structures of the inner ear help to maintain balance and equilibrium: the three semicircular canals that are interconnected and positioned at right angles to each other just like a gyroscope. The other structure contains the vestibule (has the saccule and utricle) that connects the semicircular canals to the cochlea. The semicircular canals are filled with a fluid called the endolymph. Each one of the semicircular canals has an enlarged cuplike structure called the cupula. The cupula has thin hair cells.) 
If a child bends his heads, the fluid in the canals moves as well. When the fluid in the canals moves, the hair cells move in the direction of the fluid and generate signals that detect the changes in the position of the body. The signals that are detected by the hair cells of both the semicircular canals and the vestibule are converted into nerve impulses and sent to the brain through the vestibular nerve. The brain also receives signals from the visual and skeletal system of the body. The brain coordinates all three signals from the inner ear, visual system and skeletal system to maintain balance and equilibrium of the body.
If someone hears a car horn from the left side, he will instantly jump off the road to the right side (to avoid being ran over), but how can he do that? There is a very complicated system that makes man react in such a way.  If a sound comes in at an angle to the right of the face, the direction of the sound waves means that the sound will not reach both ears at the same time. The distance from the source of the sound to the left ear is a little longer than it is to the right ear (the sound waves must travel a little longer before reaching the left ear which is farthest away), and it is part of 1650 parts of one second. Accordingly, man knows that the danger is coming from this direction, and so he jumps to the other direction. What else can we say other than Subhana Allah!

One may store some candles in the attic for more than a year, but if the power goes out, he will instantly ask his son to bring the candles from the attic, what does that indicate? It indicates that the place of the candles is stored in his memory, but who provided us with this memory? Subhana Allah, Allah did. 

Unfortunately, the little time we have in this lecture will not be enough to mention all the Divine Graces we are surrounded with.

Allah orders man to look good and He helps him do so:

If one of you is shaving his beard at the barber, let him say Subhana Allah, but do you know why? He should say so, because shaving is painless, and had hairs had nerves, one would have been operated on in a hospital under sedation in order to have a haircut, to shave his beard or to trim his nails. So just say Subhana Allah for this profound Divine Wisdom.

Since Allah the Almighty created man, and He orders him to maintain his hygiene, He did not provide the nails and hairs with nerves. If the One Who orders man is not the Creator, then contradictions will occur. Allah the Almighty orders us to maintain our cleanness, and He helps us do that by creating the hair or nails without sensory nerves. Hence, say Subhana Allah whenever you eat or shave.

When man eats the most delicious food in the world, it will turn into something unpleasant which man defecates in the bathroom, right? This is the case of the worldly life, for it is like this delicious expensive food which turns into unpleasant outcome.

﴾ Verily, the home of the Hereafter, that is the life indeed (i.e. the eternal life that will never end), if they but knew﴿ 

 [Al-Ankabut, 64]

Reflecting on Allah's Signs and Graces:

If man loves Allah sincerely, he will glorify Allah for everything. Allah honored man and created the birds, the roses, the green grass and the flowers, so  if man sees these beautiful things in his city, and he  says, "There is a great deal of care from the side of the government", he is right. However, this man can go deeper and think of the One Who created these things and says, "Subhana Allah who created these roses to fill hearts with joy". If you do so, you will offer Tasbeeh all day long.

Counting the times of uttering Tasbeeh by using a rosary (especially with absent heart) is not the right way to do Tasbeeh, but rather one should reflect on Allah's Signs, Graces and other Wonders He created. When man does so, he will be with Allah all the time and will never become heedless.

Countries around the world use different words for naming the months of the year, so their calendars may not be understandable to people of a different country, and making a unified calendar will be a difficult task even for the largest calendars' company in the world. On the other hand, the phases of the moon make an understandable calendar to every person on earth. 

﴾ And the moon as a light and measured out its (their) stages, that you might know the number of years and the reckoning.﴿ 


[Yunus, 5]

"Li" (that you may) used in the previous Ayah is an Arabic prefix that is used to explain the reason or the purpose of something. Everyone on earth can see the moon and is able to count the days according to the phases of the moon. Even when they have different opinions about the new moon, the middle of the lunar month will be profoundly decided when the full moon is seen. Thus, the moon is created by Allah to be a natural calendar for us, and this is but a favor from Him. All we can say when we reflect on all these graces is but, Subhana Allah!

Sleeping is one of Allah's Signs:

Sleeping at night is one of Allah's Graces. During sleep the connections between brain cells undergo massive shrinkage (by drawing nerve cells apart from one another), so all processes stop, and it is like when someone comes across a wide river which he cannot cross, so he just stands there.

There might be different sounds around the sleeping person, like the sneezing of another person or the sound of a door when it is opened, so does this sleeping person hear these sounds? Yes he does, but these sounds find a wide distance to cross (between the nerve cells), so it stops, and this goes on while someone is sleeping.

Stimulant drugs works by bringing the nerve cells closer to one another, while sleeping pills do the opposite, and they separate the cells from each other. If the sound is very loud, it will create an electrical impulse that is big enough to cross the distance between the nerve cells and the sleeping person will wake up thereby. It is just like when a wild animal is chasing you; even if you come across a wide river, you will cross it, but if no one is chasing you, you will not cross that river. Hence, sleeping is a grace: 

﴾ And among His Signs is the sleep that you take by night and by day﴿ 


[Ar-Rum, 23]

Pay attention to "The Sleep that you take by night", what is the nature of sleep? When man sleeps, he wakes up very energetic, but if he does not sleep for even one day, he will be exhausted for three days, and he will lose his concentration, he will not speak rationally, and he will not have a clear mind. Sleeping is a grace, and it is an interesting journeyman takes every night; Subhana Allah!

The different meanings of Tasbeeh:

Uttering Tasbeeh with the tongue while holding a rosary is fine, but it is not the right performance of Tasbeeh. Tasbeeh is offered when man reflects on Allah's Greatness, on His Most Beautiful Names, on His Perfection and on His Holy Deity.

(Yahya related to me from Malik from Abu Ubayd, the mawla of Sulayman ibn Abd Al-Malik, from Ata ibn Yazid al-Laythi that Abu Hurayra said, "Whoever says 'Glory be to Allah' (Subhana Allah) thirty- three times and 'Allah is Greater' (Allahu akbar) thirty-three times and 'Praise be to Allah' (Al-Hamdulillah) thirty-three times, and seals the hundred with 'There is no god but Allah, alone without any partner. The Kingdom and praise belong to Him and He has power over everything' (la Ilaha illa Allah, wahdahu la sharika lah, lahu'l mulku wa lahu'l hamd, wa huwa ala kulli shay'in qadir) after every prayer will have his wrong actions forgiven him even if they are abundant as the foam on the sea.")

[Ahmad, on the authority of Abi Hurairah]

Pay attention to the high standard set by the Prophet PBUH. Subhana Allah is to reflect on Allah's Signs. Al-Hamdulillah is to thank Allah for His Graces. Allahu Akbar is to glorify Him. Then at the end and after repeating each one of them 33 times, one says, there is no Deity worthy of worship except Allah Alone, without partner to Him belongs the dominion, and to Him is all the praise, He gives life and causes death, He is Living and does not die, in His Hand is the good, and He has power over all things (la Ilaha illa Allah, Wahdahu la Sharika lahu, Lahul-Mulku wa Lahul-Hamdu, Yuhiyu wa Yumitu, wa Huwa Hayyun la Yamutu, Biyadihil-Khairu, wa Huwa ala Kulli Shai'in Qadir).

The soul of the one who does that will be pacified, and he will establish a connection with Allah the Almighty, given Allah's Light erases everything else. Hence, this is one of the meanings of Tasbeeh.

Offering Tasbeeh and Tahmeed is a cause to increase sustenance: 

This is history repeating itself.

(A man came to the Prophet PBUH and complained about poverty)

Life sometimes crushes man until he sells his store for trivial price which will suffice him only for few months, and then he will not be able to afford bread. If he tries to look for a job, he will not find any, and if he asks someone to lend him money, the later will apologize, and if he tries to travel, he will not be issued the visa. Accordingly, all doors will seem closed in the face of this person.

(A Hadith was narrated from Ibn 'Umar (may Allah be pleased with him, who said: A man came to the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) and complained to him of poverty or debt. The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said to him, "What about the prayer of the angels and the Tasbeeh of all creation by means of which Allah sends down provision from heaven?")

[Al-Mustaghfiri in Ad-Da'awat, on the authority of Ibn Umar]

Allah afflicts man with poverty due to profound Divine Wisdom, Knowledge and Omnipotence. Sometimes a person might not earn 1000 or even 500 in a whole month, so he may eat from the dumpsters, because he cannot find food to eat. The Prophet PBUH taught us to offer Tasbeeh as angels do, but the main point in this Hadith is that when you offer Tasbeeh and Hamd as they should be, Allah will give you provision abundantly.
Whoever does not ask Allah for anything because he is busy in remembering Him, will be given more than those who ask Allah: 
We move to another concept. Allah the Almighty says: 

﴾ If they (non-Muslims) had believed in Allah, and went on the Right Way (i.e. Islam) We should surely have bestowed on them water (rain) in abundance. That We might try them thereby.﴿ 


[Al-Jin, 16-17]

Allah the Almighty says: 

﴾ And if only they had acted according to the Taurat (Torah), the Injeel (Gospel), and what has (now) been sent down to them from their Lord (the Qur'an), they would surely have gotten provision from above them and from underneath their feet.﴿ 


[Al-Ma'idah', 66]

Allah the Almighty says: 

﴾ And if the people of the towns had believed and had the Taqwa (piety), certainly, We should have opened for them blessings from the heaven and the earth﴿ 


[Al-A'raf, 96]

A rich man may own 2000 olive trees, but if deadly bacteria infect the trees, preventing water movement in them, it destroys roots after drying them up, turn their leaves yellow before falling off and weakens the branches as well.  There is no way to avoid this destruction, because we cannot spray the roots of the tree unless we shovel the soil which is impossible. Allah the Almighty is able to do all things.
The average of the rainfall rate in Damascus is 150 milliliters per year. By Allah, the Only Deity, He is able to bring it all in one time and give us rain which provides us with those 150 milliliters.  Unfortunately, the seven rivers in Damascus are dry. People used to warn their children from drowning in the river, but can anyone be drowned in a river at present? No, he cannot, there is no deep water to cause drowning.

﴾ And if the people of the towns had believed and had the Taqwa (piety), certainly, We should have opened for them blessings from the heaven and the earth﴿ 

 [Al-A'raf, 96]

The one who is keen on seeking religious knowledge will not be left without provision; for Allah will reward him for the time he spends in learning and will never forget him.

(The Prophet (PBUH) said: "The Lord, Blessed and Most High is He, has said: 'Whoever is too busy with the Qur'an for remembering Me and asking Me, then I shall give him more than what I give to those who ask.') 

[From Ad-Dur Al-Manthoor, on the authority of Umar bin Al-Khattab]

Why would some who seeks knowledge come from a far village, spending two hours in his way and taking two busses only to get to the Masjid?  He would do that for the Sake of Allah, because there are no tangible benefits. Thus, he is 100% sincere in his quest. Do you think Allah the Almighty will leave such a person without provision? Absolutely, He will not. 

(A man said O Messenger of Allah (PBUH) meager is my provisions, so he PBUH said, "Do you make the prayer of the angels and the liturgical exaltation (Tasbeeh) of the creations? Say 'Subhana Allah wa Bihamdihi Subhana Allah Al-Azeem" (How perfect Allah is and I praise Him; and How perfect Allah is the Most Great)' and seek forgiveness of Allāh (wa astaghfirullāh) one Hundred times between the appearance of Fajr and the performance of Subh prayer), (then) the world will come to you belittled and humbled.")


[Al-Mustaghfiri in Ad-Da'awat, on the authority of Ibn Umar]

In another Hadith:

(Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, "There are two statements that are light for the tongue to remember, heavy in the Scales and are dear to the Merciful: 'Subhana Allah wa Bihamdihi, Subhana Allah Al-Azeem [Glory be to Allah and His is the praise, (and) Allah, the Greatest is free from imperfection]'.")

[Al-Bukhari, on the authority of Abi Hurairah]

﴾ And his wife too, who carries wood (thorns of Sadan which she used to put on the way of the Prophet, or use to slander him).﴿ 


[Al-Masad, 4]

Du'a (supplication) is the greatest thing in Islam:

Among the embroidery of the Kiswah of Ka'abah (it is the cloth that covers the Ka'abah in Makkah) you will read the following in very tiny letters: Subhana Allah wa bi Hamdihi Subhana Allah Al-Azeem (All Glory is to Allah and all Praise to Him, Glorified is Allah, The Great). Also ask for Allah's Forgiveness 100 times between the time of Fajr and offering Fajr Salah. By doing so, the worldly life will come to you truckling. 

Actually, the worldly life is not a problem, but the serious problem lies in being far from Allah the Almighty, because if you are far from Him, things will get tighter and tighter, while if you turn to Him entirely, the worldly life will come to you truckling. Allah the Almighty says:

﴾ And his wife too, who carries wood (thorns of Sadan which she used to put on the way of the Prophet, or use to slander him).﴿ 

[Al-Masad, 4]

Turn to Allah and the worldly life will be at your service, but if you turn away from Allah, your earnings will decrease, the basic needs will increase, you will not have enough money to meet all your needs and you will be confused and helpless. 

(The Prophet PBUH said:  If Allah's servant says, 'Al-Hamdulillah (praise be to Allah)', it will fill that which is between the heaven and the earth.)

[Ihya' Uloom Ad-Deen, on the authority of Ghiyath bin Ibrahim]

I hope that each one of us comprehend the meaning of Al-Hamd which indicates that we should be grateful to Allah for everything in prosperity and in adversity. Hence, when someone says Al-Hamd, meaning what he says, it will fill that which between the heaven and the earth.

(… and if he says Al-Hamdulillah for the second time, it will fill that which is between the seventh heaven to the lowest land, and if he says Al-Hamdulillah for the third time, Allah will say, "Ask me and I will give you".)

If you ask the true believers about the power of the sincere Du'a, they will tell you that whatever you ask Allah for, Allah will respond to you. In fact, Du'a is the greatest thing in Islam, and by Du'a you are the most powerful person on earth and Allah will be with you, because He is the Creator and if you make Du'a to Him from the bottom of your heart, He will respond to you.

Put your trust in Allah if you wish to be stronger than others:

Imam Al-Ghazali said, "If you want to be the most powerful man, put your trust in Allah, and if you want to be the richest among people, your trust in what is with Allah should be more than your trust in what you own, and if you want to be the most generous person fear Allah and ask Him for what you want, for if Allah gives He will surprise you." One bargain might make you and your offspring rich. 

Many years ago, the harvested wheat was placed on the sides of roads in Aleppo, and upon asking about the reason, I was answered that there were not enough grain silos to store the wheat, so new silos were build for that purpose. I said to myself, "Subhana Allah! When Allah gives He surprises whether He gives wheat, oil or any other grace." Being blessed with natural treasures has made some poor countries very rich ones.

﴾ (It is a great Grace and Protection from Allah), for the taming of the Quraish* (And with all those Allah's Grace and Protections for their taming, We cause) the (Quraish) caravans to set forth safe in winter (to the south), and in summer (to the north without any fear)* So let them worship (Allah) the Lord of this House (the Ka'bah in Makkah)* (He) Who has fed them against hunger, and has made them safe from fear.﴿ 


Al-Hamdulillah (praising Allah) entails a heart which knows the indications of it:

(Narrated Rifa'a bin Rafi' Az-Zuraqi: One day we were praying behind the Prophet. When he raised his head from bowing, he said, "Sami'a l-lahu liman hamidah." A man behind him said, "Rabbana wa laka l-hamdu, hamdan kathiran taiyiban mubarakan fihi" (O our Lord! All the praises are for You, many good and blessed praises).) 

This man was rejoicing his guidance to Allah, for knowing Allah is the grace of being guided to Him.

When you know Allah, death will not be an issue since you know that it is a passage between this life and another. When you know Allah the Almighty, you will be entitled for Paradise which starts in the worldly life, because the worldly life will mean nothing to you whether it shows you its good face or its ugly one. 

A man came to our Master Abdul Rahman bin Awf or may be Abu Ad-Dardaa', and he said, "Your store is on fire", to which the notable companion said, "He (i.e. Allah) would not do so to me, and it is not on fire." Upon repeating the same thing, the companion also repeated his words, "He would not do that to me, and it is not on fire." The man went to check again, and he found out that it was not his store, so he got back to him and told him that it was not his store which was on fire. At that moment, the companion said, "I know so". How great his trust  in Allah was! 

Such believers do not really care if they own the world or not, because it is the same to them. When man knows Allah, things will be easy to him towards the Hereafter, the eternity and the everlasting happiness.

(A man behind him said, "Rabbana wa laka l-hamdu, hamdan kathiran taiyiban mubarakan fihi" (O our Lord! All the praises are for You, many good and blessed praises). When the Prophet completed the prayer, he asked, "Who has said these words?" The man replied, "I." The Prophet said, "I saw over thirty angels competing to write it first.") 

[Al-Bukhari, on the authority of Rifa'a bin Rafi' Az-Zuraqi]

The Prophet PBUH was delighted, because those words meant that man knew Allah. Hence, the word of Al-Hamd entails a knowledgeable heart.

(Yahya related to me from Malik that Umara ibn Sayyad had heard Said ibn al Musayyab say about abiding good deeds that they were a slave's saying 'Allah is greater' (Allahu Akbar) and 'Glory be to Allah' (Subhana Allah) and 'Praise be to Allah' (Al-Hamdulillah) and 'There is no god but Allah and there is no power and no strength except by Allah.' (la Ilaha illa Allah wa la Hawla wa la Quwwata illa Billah.)

[Malik, on the authority of Sa'id Ibn Al-Musayyab]

The indications of these words are substantial, so living these words are like saying them.

The words which Allah likes the most:

People nowadays wander around with rosaries in their hands, and they keep uttering "Subhana Allah, Subhana Allah", but what is this? This is not Islam, but rather it is mere rites and purposeless repetition of words, whereas Subhana Allah as it should be fills that which between the heavens and the earth.

(Samurah bin Jundub (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said: "The words dearer to Allah are four: 'How perfect Allah is and all praise is for Allah. None has the right to be worshipped except Allah alone and Allah is great It does not matter which you say first.") 

[Muslim, on the authority of Samurah bin Jundub]

These are principles and main facts in Islam. Subhana Allah means that Allah owns the Most Beautiful Names. Al-Hamdu Lillah means that there is goodness in everything. Allahu Akbar means that even when you realize the Greatness of Allah, He is Greater limitlessly. La Ilaha illa Allah means that everything is in the Hand of Allah the Almighty. My advice to you is: establish a connection with the Only One (i.e. Allah), and put your soul at ease.

﴾ And to Allah belongs the Ghaib (unseen) of the heavens and the earth, and to Him return all affairs (for decision). So worship Him (O Muhammad PBUH) and put your trust in Him. And your Lord is not unaware of what you (people) do."﴿ 

 [Hud, 123]

Faith brings about purification and donating is a proof of man's love to Allah:
(On the authority of Abu Malik al-Harith bin Asim al-Asharee (may Allah be pleased with him) who said: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, "Purity is half of iman (faith). 'Al-hamdu lillah (praise be to Allah)' fills the scales, and 'Subhana Allah (how far is Allah from every imperfection) and 'Al-Hamdulillah (praise be to Allah)' fill that which is between heaven and earth. And the Salah (prayer) is a light, and charity is a proof, and patience is illumination, and the Qur'an is a proof either for you or against you. Every person starts his day as a vendor of his soul, either freeing it or causing its ruin.")
[Muslim, on the authority of Abi Malik Al-Ash'ari]

Believing purifies the soul and the true believer is like a child in his purity and innocence, for he never bears grudge towards anyone, nor he deceives or cheats on people. Our Master Umar, may Allah be pleased with him, said, "I am not a deceiver nor I will allow someone to deceive me." The one, who says what he feels is not a double-faced man, and he is the same in public and in private. 

(Purity is half of Iman (faith). 'Al-Hamdulillah (praise be to Allah)' fills the scales, and 'Subhana Allah (how far is Allah from every imperfection) and 'Al-Hamdulillah (praise be to Allah)' fill that which is between heaven and earth. And the salah (prayer) is a light, and charity is a proof, and patience is illumination, and the Qur'an is a proof either for you or against you. Every person starts his day as a vendor of his soul, either freeing it or causing its ruin.)

[Muslim, on the authority of Abi Malik Al-Ash'ari]

(…and charity is a proof…)

Everyone on earth claims to love Allah, for it is easier said than done. If you ask someone, "Do you love Allah" He will say, "Yes, I do, and I seek refuge with Allah from not loving Him. Allah is in my soul and blood." However, if a poor man asks him for some change, he will not give him and will lie about not having any change though he has a lot in the register. He even swears by Allah that he does not have change. Is this the behavior of someone who loves Allah? He lies, and he swears by Allah to back up his lie. How could anyone love Allah and swear to Him to cover his lie? This is but nonsense.  The Prophet PBUH said:

(…and charity is a proof…)

Sadaqah proves man's true faith, so he may donate 5000, 10.000 or even 50.000 and spend only 100 to have a meal with his family. Few days ago, a man donated 50.000 to the Masjid, and he received a receipt.

(…and charity is a proof…)

Hence, Sadaqah proves your love to Allah, and it proves your true, faith for it is a proof.

(…the salah (prayer) is a light, and charity is a proof, and patience is illumination, and the Qur'an is a proof either for you or against you.)


The paths of goodness are available to all people:

Pay attention to the following Hadith: 

(Jabir narrated that: The Prophet (PBUH) said: "Whoever says: 'Glory is to Allah, the Magnificent, and with His Praise (Subḥān Allāhil-Aẓīm, wa biḥamdih)' a date-palm tree is planted for him in Paradise.)

[At-Tirmizi, on the authority of Jabir]

This means that he will find the results of his good deeds in paradise.

(Abu Dharr (may Allah be pleased with him) reported: Some people said to Messenger of Allah (PBUH): "O Messenger of Allah, the rich have taken away (all the) reward. They observe Salat (prayers) as we do; and give Sadaqah (charity) out of their surplus wealth." Upon this he (the Prophet (PBUH)) said, "Has Allah not prescribed for you (a course) following which you can (also) give Sadaqah? In every declaration of the glorification of Allah (i.e., saying Subhana Allah) there is a Sadaqah, and in every Takbir (i.e., saying Allahu Akbar) is a Sadaqah, and in every celebration of praise (saying Al-Hamdulillah) is a Sadaqah, and in every declaration that He is One (la Ilaha illa Allah) is a Sadaqah, and in enjoining of good is a Sadaqah, and in forbidding evil is a Sadaqah, and in man's sexual intercourse (with his wife) there is a Sadaqah." They (the Companions) said: "O Messenger of Allah, is there reward for him who satisfies his sexual need among us?" He said, "You see, if he were to satisfy it with something forbidden, would it not be a sin on his part? Similarly, if he were to satisfy it legally, he should be rewarded".)

[Muslim, on the authority of Abi Dharr]

When you give a member of your family a piece of meat from your plate, it will be considered a Sadaqah. Well, there is also Sadaqah in marriage; when someone gets married, he guards his chastity and helps his wife guard hers thereupon, and this will be rewarded by Allah. This leaves the gates of goodness open to all people (not only to the rich), so even the poor can offer Sadaqah through Tasbeeh, Tahmeed and Tahleel, and he will be rewarded for the bite he puts in his wife's mouth and for being married.

(It was narrated from Abu Hurairah that the Prophet (PBUH) said: "When a man goes out of the door of his house, there are two angels with him who are appointed over him. If he says Bismillah (in the Name of Allah) they say: 'You have been guided.' If he says La hawla wa la quwwata illa billah (there is no power and no strength except with Allah), they say: 'You are protected.' If he says, Tawwakaltu 'ala Allah (I have my trust in Allah), they say: 'You have been taken care of.' Then his two Qarins (satans) come to him and they (the two angels) say: 'What do you want with a man who has been guided, protected and taken care of?')

I would like to confirm what I have said earlier: uttering words only (by saying Subhana Allah repeatedly) and calling that Tasbeeh while one is lying, cheating and doing evil is not the real Tasbeeh, and so it is unacceptable. Living up to the exalted meanings of the words of Tasbeeh is what man is supposed to do in order to have his Tasbeeh accepted.

Man should be with Allah in all his matters:

Imam Al-Ghazali in turn said, "Verify that doing so gets you by Elm Al-Mukashafah (Knowing things as they are at a level of awareness Sufis consistently talk about)". This knowledge entails a light in the heart from Allah the Almighty, a transparent heart, a heart that sees the graces and praise Allah for them, a heart that sees calamities and fears them and sees Allah's Favor and His Arrangement of matters and sees His Greatness.

"Verify that doing so gets you by Elm Al-Mukashafah, whereas remembering Allah with the tongue, while the heart is absent is ineffective". It is like when someone is uttering "Subhana Allah" one million times while he is watching TV, listening to music or earning ill-gotten money; in this case his Tasbeeh is worthless.

"Using the tongue in Tasbeeh while the heart is absent is ineffective. Also, if man's heart senses Allah the Almighty, but he is away from Him in his thoughts, and he is busy with his world while uttering Tasbeeh, such a deed will be pointless." You should be with Allah the Almighty all the time, while you are awake, at work, at home and on the road. This is the abundant remembrance of Allah the Almighty. 

I will continue shedding light on this topic next lecture insha' Allah (if Allah wills).

Some Prophetic Ahadeeth:

Let us read some Prophetic Ahadeeth:

(It is narrated on the authority of 'Abbas b. 'Abdul-Muttalib that he heard the Messenger of Allah saying: He has found the taste of faith (iman) who is content with Allah as his Lord, with Islam as his religion (code of life) and with Muhammad (PBUH) as his Prophet.)

[Muslim, on the authority of Al-Abbas]

I would like to ask this question, have you tasted the sweetness of faith? Its taste is indescribable. However, only the one who follows the Right Path of Allah shall taste it. There are other tastes as well such as tranquility, Tawakul (putting one's trust in Allah), endurance and submission. Some people live in fear and under stress, and they never taste the sweetness of faith.

These different kinds of sweetness are known only by those who tasted them, given there is a price that should be paid. Some people are sufficed by Allah as a Lord, by Islam as a religion and by Muhammad PBUH as the Messenger of Allah. 

Some people are not satisfied with the Sunnah, so they incline to innovate that which does not belong to Islam. Well, if you follow innovations, you will corrupt yourself. Unfortunately, those people want more than the Quran, remembering Allah and offering night prayers, and they look for fun, entertainment, magazines and other pleasures. The believer, on the other hand, is satisfied with Allah as a Lord, with Islam as a religion and with Muhammad PBUH as the Messenger of Allah. 

(Abdullah Ibn Umar (may Allah be pleased with them) narrates that the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, "The one who remembers Allah the Almighty among those who are negligent is like the one who goes on fighting after others have deserted. The one who remembers Allah the Almighty among the neglectful is like a lamp in a dark house…)

[Shu'ab Al-Iman, on the authority of Ibn Umar] 

In another narration: 

(Abdullah Ibn Umar (may Allah be pleased with them) narrates that the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, "The one who remembers Allah the Almighty among those who are negligent is like a green tree among the dry trees.")

[Shu'ab Al-Iman, on the authority of Ibn Umar] 

They dried up because of thirst.

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