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Maulana Shaykh Nazim’s Short Snippets of Advice
1st November 2010
Allah likes to see His servants happy
A’uzubillah himinash shaitan nirrajeem
Bismillah-hir Rahman-nir Raheem
Assalamu’alaikum wrh wbkt
(In this Suhbah, Maulana advised Shaykh Kayyal on six specific matters. After reading this Summary, you should watch the actual video, so as to see Maulana demonstrate the actual way of standing during prayer. Although the entire video is 13 minutes long, you only need to watch the first three minutes to see Maulana’s demonstration)
1) Standing like a servant, before the Lord, in prayer
- Maulana addressed the matter of how we should pray. A person who stands before Allah, must be focused and be concentrating fully on his actions. Maulana asks, how does a person stand in the presence of a Sultan? What is the protocol (adab) of being with the Sultan? One must stand respectfully and humbly! Maulana lamented the fact that many people are ignorant of this, they ignore the necessary Shariah, and they stand in an indifferent, inattentive or lackadaisical manner.
- According to the Hanafi School of Shariah (which Maulana follows), we should stand with our feet only slightly apart, they should be a mere hand’s span apart from each other. Unfortunately, some men stand with their feet so far apart, that they appear to be relieving themselves! How can one stand in the presence of the Sultan, looking like a lazy, laid-back loafer? Once the feet have been positioned appropriately, the worshipper should stand with head bowed humbly, to portray an appearance of humility during the performance of the prayer.
- The prayer leader (Imam), must also check that his congregation is aware of this matter when he leads them, as he will be questioned concerning those who are following him.
2) One must know where to stop, when reading a Surah
- Maulana then asked Shaykh Kayyal, who had led prayers just moments earlier, to recite the verse that he had read during the prayer. It was the last ‘ein of Suran Ali-Imran:
إِنَّ فِى خَلۡقِ ٱلسَّمَـٰوَٲتِ وَٱلۡأَرۡضِ وَٱخۡتِلَـٰفِ ٱلَّيۡلِ وَٱلنَّہَارِ لَأَيَـٰتٍ۬ لِّأُوْلِى ٱلۡأَلۡبَـٰبِ (١٩٠) ٱلَّذِينَ يَذۡكُرُونَ ٱللَّهَ قِيَـٰمً۬ا وَقُعُودً۬ا وَعَلَىٰ جُنُوبِهِمۡ وَيَتَفَڪَّرُونَ فِى خَلۡقِ ٱلسَّمَـٰوَٲتِ وَٱلۡأَرۡضِ رَبَّنَا مَا خَلَقۡتَ هَـٰذَا بَـٰطِلاً۬ سُبۡحَـٰنَكَ فَقِنَا عَذَابَ ٱلنَّارِ (١٩١) رَبَّنَآ إِنَّكَ مَن تُدۡخِلِ ٱلنَّارَ فَقَدۡ أَخۡزَيۡتَهُ ۥۖ وَمَا لِلظَّـٰلِمِينَ مِنۡ أَنصَارٍ۬ (١٩٢)رَّبَّنَآ إِنَّنَا سَمِعۡنَا مُنَادِيً۬ا يُنَادِى لِلۡإِيمَـٰنِ أَنۡ ءَامِنُواْ بِرَبِّكُمۡ فَـَٔامَنَّاۚ رَبَّنَا فَٱغۡفِرۡ لَنَا ذُنُوبَنَا وَڪَفِّرۡ عَنَّا سَيِّـَٔاتِنَا وَتَوَفَّنَا مَعَ ٱلۡأَبۡرَارِ (١٩٣) رَبَّنَا وَءَاتِنَا مَا وَعَدتَّنَا عَلَىٰ رُسُلِكَ وَلَا تُخۡزِنَا يَوۡمَ ٱلۡقِيَـٰمَةِۗ إِنَّكَ لَا تُخۡلِفُ ٱلۡمِيعَادَ (١٩٤) فَٱسۡتَجَابَ لَهُمۡ رَبُّهُمۡ أَنِّى لَآ أُضِيعُ عَمَلَ عَـٰمِلٍ۬ مِّنكُم مِّن ذَكَرٍ أَوۡ أُنثَىٰۖ بَعۡضُكُم مِّنۢ بَعۡضٍ۬ۖ فَٱلَّذِينَ هَاجَرُواْ وَأُخۡرِجُواْ مِن دِيَـٰرِهِمۡ وَأُوذُواْ فِى سَبِيلِى وَقَـٰتَلُواْ وَقُتِلُواْ لَأُكَفِّرَنَّ عَنۡہُمۡ سَيِّـَٔاتِہِمۡ وَلَأُدۡخِلَنَّهُمۡ جَنَّـٰتٍ۬ تَجۡرِى مِن تَحۡتِہَا ٱلۡأَنۡهَـٰرُ ثَوَابً۬ا مِّنۡ عِندِ ٱللَّهِۗ وَٱللَّهُ عِندَهُ ۥ حُسۡنُ ٱلثَّوَابِ (١٩٥) لَا يَغُرَّنَّكَ تَقَلُّبُ ٱلَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ فِى ٱلۡبِلَـٰدِ (١٩٦) مَتَـٰعٌ۬ قَلِيلٌ۬ ثُمَّ مَأۡوَٮٰهُمۡ جَهَنَّمُۚ وَبِئۡسَ ٱلۡمِهَادُ (١٩٧) لَـٰكِنِ ٱلَّذِينَ ٱتَّقَوۡاْ رَبَّهُمۡ لَهُمۡ جَنَّـٰتٌ۬ تَجۡرِى مِن تَحۡتِہَا ٱلۡأَنۡهَـٰرُ خَـٰلِدِينَ فِيہَا نُزُلاً۬ مِّنۡ عِندِ ٱللَّهِۗ وَمَا عِندَ ٱللَّهِ خَيۡرٌ۬ لِّلۡأَبۡرَارِ (١٩٨) وَإِنَّ مِنۡ أَهۡلِ ٱلۡڪِتَـٰبِ لَمَن يُؤۡمِنُ بِٱللَّهِ وَمَآ أُنزِلَ إِلَيۡكُمۡ وَمَآ أُنزِلَ إِلَيۡہِمۡ خَـٰشِعِينَ لِلَّهِ لَا يَشۡتَرُونَ بِـَٔايَـٰتِ ٱللَّهِ ثَمَنً۬ا قَلِيلاًۗ أُوْلَـٰٓٮِٕكَ لَهُمۡ أَجۡرُهُمۡ عِندَ رَبِّهِمۡۗ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ سَرِيعُ ٱلۡحِسَابِ (١٩٩) يَـٰٓأَيُّهَا ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ ٱصۡبِرُواْ وَصَابِرُواْ وَرَابِطُواْ وَٱتَّقُواْ ٱللَّهَ لَعَلَّكُمۡ تُفۡلِحُونَ (٢٠٠)
Behold! in the creation of the heavens and the earth, and the alternation of Night and Day,― there are indeed Signs for men of understanding.― (190) Men who celebrate the praises of Allah standing, sitting, and lying down on their sides, and contemplate the (wonders of) creation in the heavens and the earth, (with the thought): “Our Lord! not for naught hast Thou created (all) this! Glory to Thee! Give us salvation from the penalty of the Fire. (191) “Our Lord! any whom thou dost admit to the Fire Truly thou coverest with shame, and never will wrong-doers find any helpers!. (192) “Our Lord! we have heard the call of one calling (us) to faith, `Believe ye in the Lord’, and we have believed. Our Lord! forgive us our sins blot out from us our iniquities, and take to Thyself our souls in the company of the righteous. (193) “Our Lord! Grant us what Thou didst promise unto us through Thy Messengers, and save us from shame on the Day of Judgment: for thou never breakest Thy promise.” (194) And their Lord hath accepted of them, and answered them: “Never will I suffer to be lost the work of any of you, be he male or female: ye are members one of another; those who have left their homes, and were driven out therefrom, and suffered harm in My cause, and fought and were slain,― verily I will blot out from them their iniquities, and admit them into Gardens with rivers flowing beneath;― a reward from the presence of Allah and from His presence is the best of rewards.” (195) Let not the strutting about of the Unbelievers through the land deceive thee: (196) Little is it for enjoyment; their ultimate abode is Hell: what an evil bed (to lie on)! (197) On the other hand, for those who fear their Lord, are Gardens with rivers flowing beneath: therein are they to dwell (for ever) a gift,― from the presence of Allah; and that which is in the presence of Allah is the best (bliss) for the righteous. (198) And there are, certainly, among the people of the Book, those who believe in Allah, in the revelation to you, and in the revelation to them, bowing in humility to Allah: they will not sell the signs of Allah for a miserable gain! For them is a reward with their Lord, and Allah is swift in account. (199) O ye who believe! persevere in patience and constancy: vie in such perseverance; strengthen each other; and fear Allah; that ye may prosper. (200) (Quran 3:190-200)
- Shaykh Kayyal had stopped reading at the end of Verse 193, and Maulana asked why he had done so. Maulana said, many Imams liked to stop reading at that point, but that was improper, they should actually continue reading until they reached the next Verse, Verse 194, “Our Lord! Grant us what Thou didst promise unto us through Thy Messengers, and save us from shame on the Day of Judgment: for thou never breakest Thy promise.” That is a Sublime Verse containing a Promise from Allah! So read it, do not leave it out, it such a powerful do’a, the reward for reciting it is seven times of all the worship done in this world! By omitting it, he is depriving himself, and his congregation (jema’ah) of that blessed reward – what a terrible loss for stopping (waqaf) at the wrong place during recitation of the Quran in prayer!
3) Reading short Surahs and reading them quickly when leading prayers
- Maulana then explained to the Shaykh that during the recitation of Surah Al-Fatihah, the Imam must join the verses together (wasal), and read the Surah fairly rapidly. Wahhabi Imams like to read every sentence singly (without joining), making the reading slow and labourious, taking a long time to complete the Surah. That is not the way of Ahli Sunnah wal Jema’ah. The Prophet (saw) never recited the Fatihah in a draggy, long-winded way, as is done by some prominent Imams today!
- We must not follow blindly, we must be certain of what we are doing, and we must be clear as to why we are performing our worship in a particular way, as we will be raised with whom we follow/imitate. The Prophet (saw) likes his Nation to be people of certainty, not to be people who are groping in the dark, and blindly imitating famous (yet ignorant) people.
4) Men must sport beards, it is an important Sunnah
- Maulana then remarked about a man in the room, who was beardless. “Give to everything and everyone its rights,” he exclaimed, “why do you not give your beard its right?” Allah has ordained that the beard is to adorn the face of male believers, it is its right to be allowed to do so, so why are some believers denying the beard its right to exist?
- Every young man must grow a beard, it is not a matter that is to be treated in jest or to be taken lightly! What is halal and what is haram, is clear. Similarly, what is truth and what is falsehood, is also crystal clear.
5) Allah laughs, and He likes His servants to laugh too!
- Maulana then asked Shaykh Kayyal, “Does Allah laugh?” “Yes,” answered Shaykh Kayyal. “Does Allah cry?” continued Maulana. “No,” said Shaykh Kayyal.
- Maulana explained that indeed, Allah does laugh, and He doesn’t cry, as crying is a sign of weakness, a sign of incapability and of incapacity – it is an attribute of a servant, not of the Lord. How can Allah cry? He is the Compeller, the Bestower, the Provider, the Subduer, the Honourable, the Omnipotent, the Dominant, the All-Powerful!
- Maulana advised Shaykh Kayyal to learn by heart the Hadees pertaining to Allah laughing, so that he could clarify this matter to others. Just as Allah laughs, we (humans) also laugh. In a hadees, Rasulullah (saw) says, “He who imitates a Community, is from them,” so we must imitate God-ly manners and behaviour, so as to be with Him. Rasulullah (saw) said, “We must seek to acquire the manners of the Lord.” Allah is happy/pleased to see His servants laugh. So don’t cry. Instead, laugh, and make others laugh too.
6) The purpose of all this advice
- Maulana said that he was correcting the faults of those around him, as he wanted them to complete their journeys in perfection. Even learned ones, who can carry the burdens of their followers like a camel, may overlook some matters, and are always in need of advice and reminding. If there is some matter to correct, we must do so.
- Maulana concluded by informing those attending, that the Budala Saints had sent Shaykh Kayyal to him for advice, since Shaykh Kayyal could understand Maulana’s language, but not the language of the Budalas.
- Rasulullah (saw) said, “I sit as a servant sits, I walk as a servant walks, and I eat as a servant eats.” The protocol of a servant must be with us in every moment of our lives, especially so when we stand in worship before the Lord Almighty. Give Him our highest respect, and he will save us. (See this past Suhbah on this matter)
- The last ‘ein of Surah Ali-Imran is usually read at tahajjud time, as is the practice of Rasulullah (saw). It contains powerful doas, and it is a Sunnah to recite it when one awakes for tahajjud prayers.
- It is important for Imams to read their Surahs quickly, and to shorten prayers (by reading short Surahs), as there may be in the congregation, those who are busy, ill, old, nursing etc, so the Imam must be considerate and he must not prolong prayers. Rasulullah (saw) said, “If anyone of you leads the people in the prayer, he should shorten it, for amongst them are the weak, the sick and the old; and if anyone among you prays alone then he may prolong (the prayer) as much as he wishes. ” A man came and said, “O Allah’s Apostle! I keep away from the morning prayer because so-and-so (Imam) prolongs it too much.” Allah’s Apostle became furious and they had never seen him more furious than he was on that day. The Prophet said, “O people! Some of you make others dislike the prayer, so whoever becomes an Imam, he should shorten the prayer, as behind him are the weak, the old and the needy.” The Prophet used to pray a short prayer (in congregation) but used to offer it in a perfect manner.
- By instructing us to laugh, Maulana means that we must be easy-going, jovial and light-hearted in our interaction with people, so that people find us approachable and loving. We must mix with people in that manner, as a sombre, sultry and aggressive stance will put people off and throw people off the path. However, this does not mean that we crack jokes and roll on the floor during Suhbahs; we must carry ourselves with dignity and decorum. And since crying is an attribute of servants, we should be doing so during our solitary moments with Allah, on the prayer mat during tahajjud prayers, where we beg Him for safe passage for ourselves and for our loved ones. Tears shed during repentance and regret, extinguish the Fire of Jahannam, as was shown by a Hadees where Rasulullah (saw) saw Sayyidina Jibrail (as) extinguishing the Fires of Hell with a container of water, and when asked what water it was, Sayyidina Jibrail (as) said, “Those are the tears of your Ummah, ya Habeebi.”
- Laugh when you are with the creation (people), and cry when you are alone with the Creator. Allah says, “I will never combine two fears in a man. If he truly fears Me in dunia, he shall never fear Me in akherat, but if he fears Me not in dunia, he shall truly fear Me in akherat.”
وَأَنَّهُ ۥ هُوَ أَضۡحَكَ وَأَبۡكَىٰ
That it is He who Grants Laughter and Tears (Quran 53:43)
- I shall conclude by quoting a hadees pertaining to Allah laughing. In a hadees related by Ibn Majah, Prophet Muhammad (saw) said “Verily our Lord laughs at the despair that His servants feel, even though His Help is so close!” So Laqit bin Saburah said “O Messenger of Allah – may my mother and father be given as your ransom – and does our Lord laugh?” The Prophet replied, “Yes!” Laqit said, “In that case, we will never give up hope of receiving good from a Lord that laughs!”
This Suhbah can only be watched at www.Saltanat.org, choose from the menu on the right, ‘How To Pray 01. Nov 2010′. There is a CC button next to the Volume control at the bottom of the screen to choose choose subtitles in eight languages, choose from Arabic, Bahasa Indonesia/Melayu, German, English, Spanish, Italian, Russian and Turkish. During Live Suhbahs, the buttons at the top provide Live Audio Translations into other languages. Saltanat TV is the Official Site of Maulana Shaykh Nazim that is sanctioned and approved by him personally.