People of the Cave

…We turned them on their right and on their left sides…
Quran (18:18)

It doesn’t matter how many times you read a Surah you will always learn something new or reflect on an ayah in a way that you haven’t before. This happened to me as I read Surah Kahf. As I read ayah 18 where it says that while they slept Allah turned them to the right and left, I realised how significant it is. SubhanAllah it is amazing how even an ayah as simple as this on initial reading can teach you something profound and mke you appreciate the Quran and Allah even more. 
As a health professional it’s part of my job to ensure that my patients have the best quality of life we can possibly give them. Do you know what we do for patients who are bed bound? We provide carers who have to ensure that the patient is turned on their right and left every few hours to prevent pressure sores. Even we who are able to move ourselves, while we sleep we turn on our right and left to remain comfortable and prevent pressure areas. 
SubhanAllah it is only by the mercy of Allah that he ensured they turned regularly on their right and onto their left so they would not develop these pressure areas, which are so horrendously painful and can even cause a person to end up in hospital for months or even lead to their death. Especially as sleeping in a cave would have meant they slept on the hard floor making them even more susceptible to developing these pressure areas. 
I know this is just my reflection on the ayah but still for me it’s just amazing. Allah only tells us something if it is important and will benefit us, so this is clearly something that will benefit us, and today we actually use this to help many people. 
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#WhoIsMuhammad

How can I describe who he is? This man who came with a message from God and changed the world forever. How is it possible that I can have so much love for him without ever meeting him?
Do you know that the very people that hated him and wanted to stop him from spreading the message of God called him the truthful and trustworthy?
Did you know many people became Muslim just through his excellence in manners and noble character?
With all this hatred at the moment I wanted to clarify who Muhammad (pbuh) is. It is so painful to see all this hatred for someone so beloved to me especially when they don’t even know who he was. What did he spend his life doing? How did he live? What type of person was he?
He was a man that taught racial equality, social justice, economic equity and women’s rights.
He was kind and never harsh or rude. Despite others constantly insulting and being rude to him. He always took the middle path and was never extreme in doing too much or too little.
Even though he went through so many hardships in his life, he was known as the smiling one, who always laughed and made others laugh and smile too.
He was a man who never hurt anyone and cared so much for everyone around him, that he would pray constantly for them. His concern was always for others. He taught us to treat others how we, ourselves, would want to be treated.
Due to his character and manners those around him loved him and even those who were against him were only against him because they did not want to follow his message. His neighbour would throw rubbish on him when he walked past but when she was ill he went to visit her and treated her with kindness.
I can just go on and on about him but I would be here forever. He is so beloved by all the Muslims in the world, I love him more than my parents, my husband, my friends and all you have to do is read about him to know why.
I will leave you with this short video…

Do we love Eid?

So as christmas holidays have just ended, i’ve been thinking about why children are so in love with christmas. This also affects muslim children as well and sometimes i’ve seen that they actually like christmas more than eid!
Some of the many reasons which I have found is the fact that the preperations for christmas are so big and so exciting that the kids cant wait for christmas to arrive. There’s presents all wrapped up waiting for them, there’s parties and decorations, stories and christmas activities. After all this it’s no wonder children love christmas time. This excitement, this love that our children have should be for Eid not christmas. So why is it that this isn’t so prevalent in our children?

Some of the reasons I have found is that many children don’t even know why we celebrate Eid and its not exciting for them. I know when i was young i found Eid quite boring. So what can we do to change this? How can we make Eid more exciting to our younger siblings or our children?

Well some of the things i’ve started to do with my younger sisters and brother has helped to make Eid so much more exciting and build a love for Eid, and i thought i would share it with everyone to help you all too:
1. So before Eid arrives i share stories and explain why we celebrate Eid. 
2. The night before Eid we all help put decorations up, some which we have made together at home and some store bought banners. A good place to look for decorations is www.muslimstickers.com
3. On Eid day we put on a show for the adults which we have prepared beforehand. We have quran recitation, Eid poems and even a short play. This not only gets the kids involved but also the adults.
4. We also make an eid countdown calender and do other activities such as reading a story and then making a model. For example if we read about how the kabah was built we then would get cardboard, paint, colours etc and build the kabah. Children love getting hands on and they are more likely to remember the story.
5. Presents! Children love presents! When i was young i would be given money and i never felt the same excitement as opening a present. My sisters and brother love coming home from eid salah to find presents waiting for them. They can’t wait to open them! This builds love between the family.
So these are things that i do to make Eid more exciting for my younger siblings, this in turn makes them less excited about christmas because they have had their excitement at Eid. I hope these are helpful and i’m sure there are many other things to do to make Eid more exciting so that the kids don’t feel like they need to celebrate christmas. 

Our Ibadah is only as Good as what we Eat

O mankind! Eat of that which is lawful and good on the earth and follow not the footsteps of shaytan. Verily he is to you an open enemy. (2:168)

Reflecting on this ayah we learn so much. Allah not only tells us to eat what is halal but also good healthy food. Allah also makes the connection between food and the shaytan. Shaytan also uses food to trick us, getting us to eat unhealthy causes bad effects on our ibadah. We cant concentrate on our salah and feel lazy. So we should strive to not only eat what is halal but also good for our bodies so that we may increase and remain consistent in our ibadah. Many of us don’t even realise that eat a healthy balanced diet can also affect our ibadah and in turn affect our aakhirah. It is an area that many of us neglect but inshaAllah we can change this and eat better and we will be able to see the positive effects in our ibadah.

It’s a Hijab not a Halo¬†

For a muslim woman, wearing the hijab is a manifestation of her faith and an obligation to the wills and commands of her Creator. When the ayah about hijab was revealed: “And let them draw their head coverings (khimar) over their neck and bossoms (juyub).” [An-Nur: 31] it showed the world that women wern’t mere objects of desires or for mens pleasure. They were to be treated with honour, respect and dignity.

Hijab is not a superhero cape; it does not confer on to us the magical ability to become perfect muslims nor does it render us incapable of making mistakes.

We have developed this attitude that if we see a sister make a mistake and shes wearing hijab we instantly condemn her as a bad person. But its not because she may have committed a sin, we come to this conclusion due to the fact that shes wearing a hijab! This needs to stop! Just because she wears hijab does not make her immune from making mistakes. It is a hijab not a halo. It also doesnt make it any less sinful for a sister without hijab to do the same thing. Yet it is not seen as something as serious if she isnt wearing a hijab. What is wrong is wrong, regardless of whether she wears a hijab or not. People then slander, backbite and spread rumours about how “awful” this sister is. But is this not a sin too? It may be that she repents from that sin so is forgiven but what about us who slandered her? If you are sincerly concerned for the sister than go and advise her directly and in private. And some advice for all my sisters, remember that we all commit sins and we should focus on correcting our own and repenting rather than looking for the sins others commit. May Allah forgive all our sins and guide us to the straight path. Ameen.