Issue 128 » July 27, 2001 -




Surah al-Baqarah

The Cattle (2) - Ayah 282

In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful


"Believers! Whenever you contract a debt from one another for a known term, commit it to writing. Let a scribe write it down between you justly, and the scribe may not refuse to write it down according to what Allah has taught him; so let him write, and let the debtor dictate; and let him fear Allah, his Lord, and curtail no part of it..."


Borrow only if necessary
  • You should try to relate your consumption to your income remembering the saying of the Prophet (peace be upon him), "May God prevent me from sin and borrowing." You are not supposed to borrow unless it is necessary.

Get Your Intentions Straight!

  • A scholar of Islam once said, "Whoever borrows with pure intention, God will pay for him; and whoever borrows with the intention of being extravagant and wasteful, God will ruin him."
  • Nowadays, it is very easy for individuals and nations to fall into debt. The availability and widespread use of credit cards make it very easy for people to run up large shopping bills and debts.
  • Instead of being a facility, credit cards have become a source of burden and a millstone for many people. Resulting debts have created mental strain and worry, and also family and social tension.
Borrow for a Fixed Time Period & Record It
  • When friends and relatives borrow from one another it is generally considered unseemly either to commit these loans to writing, or to have them attested by witnesses. Such an act is considered a sign of distrust.

  • However, God enjoins that whenever loans or business transactions take place, their conditions should be recorded in black and white and should be attested by witnesses so that there remains no ground for misunderstanding or dispute.

  • In times such as ours, when every action, whether at personal, social, political, or economic level is recorded and computerized, we may be able to appreciate the practicality, wisdom, and sophistication of the commandments of Allah and the Prophet (peace be upon him), given to us as a blessing, over 1400 years ago! Subhan-Allah.

Three Kinds of People whose Du'a will not be Accepted

  • In a Hadith, the Prophet (peace be upon him) mentioned that there are three kinds of people whose grievances and Duaas will not be accepted or heeded by Allah. One of them is a person who loans out his money to a person without making anyone a witness to that transaction. [at-Tabari]
[compiled from "Islam - The Natural Way" by Abdul Wahid Hamid, p. 67 and
"Towards Understanding the Qur'an", by Sayyid Abul A'la Mawdudi, Vol. I]

Watching Out for the "Other" Nakedness
  • One common mistake is to think that lowering your gaze is only required upon encountering nakedness and indecency "in the flesh" or in person.
  • Lowering our gaze must also be practiced when watching a film or television program replete with nakedness and intimate scenes of couples (actually, we should try to avoid watching such types of programs, period!)
  • Lowering our gaze includes changing the channel when "Baywatch" comes on. It also means changing the channel when watching the news if we feel attracted to the anchorperson or reporter reading or presenting the news. And anyway, television isn’t that great of a way to spend time.
  • Also, don't go to the beach or anywhere else you’ll find a plethora of bikini- and swimming-trunk clad men and women.
  • Lowering your gaze there is virtually impossible. You may turn in one direction, thinking you’re home-free, but soon enough you can’t even look there.
  • The same holds true for parks. While this doesn’t mean never taking the kids out to enjoy the slides and see-saws or having barbecues there, it does mean perhaps having activities on days that are cooler, or at times when the sun is not as hot and intense (i.e. some time in the earlier morning or before Maghrib).
  • This way, the prime time for sunbathing has passed, and most people either leave or feel cool enough to put some more clothes on.

Make Du'a

  • "Never underestimate the power of Dua," Imam Khalid Griggs once said. This holds true in all trying situations.
  • Sometimes, despite avoiding certain places where you are more likely to encounter an improperly dressed person, you may find someone walking on the street going to the beach or the park who decided to get ready for suntanning or swimming beforehand.
  • In these cases, lowering the gaze may be even harder. You weren’t expecting it, so you didn’t mentally prepare yourself.
  • If you feel overwhelmed, one suggested Dua to read is: Awdhu billahi Sami’il 'Aleem minash Shaytan ir Rajeem" [41:36]. A translation of this is "I seek the refuge of Allah who is the Hearer and Who is the Knower of all from the Shaytan the accursed".
  • In general, seek refuge in Allah. It has also been suggested to say La hawla wa la Quwwata illa billah (there is no power except with Allah). If we sincerely make Dua, insha-Allah, we can succeed in turning our eyes away.
    ... to be continued ...

[by Dr. Hesham Abdullah from http://www.soundvision.com

Thank you Sr. Aisha Islam for the suggestion!]

  • The most important questions in life are those that deal with the meaning and purpose of man's existence. The Quran explains that the human being has been placed on this earth to utilise his enormous potential to conduct himself in a manner which will fulfill his purpose in life. It is He who has created death and life that He may test which of you is best in deed [al-Mulk 67: 2].
  • The Quran further explains that man's role on earth is to live as his Creator desires him to live: in surrender and worship to Him alone. This is not because Allah in any way needs his worship, but because man needs to worship only his Creator and none else so that his own nature is not perverted and corrupted, and so that he does not live in opposition to his intrinsic character.
  • Only by so living will his earthly life be set on the right path and prosper, bringing him peace and happiness. I have not created jinn and men except to serve Me. I desire of them no provision; neither do I desire that they should feed Me. Surely God is the All-provider; the Possessor of Strength, the Eternal. [adh-Dhariyat 51: 56-58]
  • Man, with no 'mentionable' history before birth, has been given the faculties of hearing and seeing, [ad-Dahr 76: 2] two eyes and a tongue, and a pair of lips, [al-Balad 90: 8-9] as well as the capacity to reason and discern between right and wrong in using his freedom of will.
  • Given freedom of will, judgment is inevitable. The human being must give an account of his conduct and must face the consequences of how he lives his life. Obviously, to be judged fairly, this judgment must be made only after his earthly life has come to an end, and only by the One who gave this life, who knows everything, and who is All-powerful and All-just. Only then can he be judged fairly, and duly rewarded and punished, for everything-from his innermost thoughts to the consequences of his conduct that extend far and wide, and beyond his life for generations to come.
  • What, did you think that We created you in mere idle play, and that you would not be returned to Us? But, high exalted is God, the King; the True! There is no god but He, the Lord of the Noble Throne. [al-Muminun 23: 115-116]
  • A person's ultimate destiny, therefore, lies in the Life to Come, in the Akhira Everyone will be judged there by due process of justice, fairly and equitably, mercifully and kindly. No one will be wronged or dealt with unjustly even by an atom's weight.
  • Surely God shall not wrong so much as an atom's weight. [an-Nisa 4: 40] This as only what you had sent forth, you are being recompensed only for what you had done before. [al-Kahf 18: 49]
  • Thus, everything in our lives is being recorded. Even the smallest of incidents will be replayed before our eyes on the Day of Judgment. That Judgment will be final and one from which there will be no escape. Paradise will be the reward for excellence in doing good, while Hell-fire will be the penalty for those who were ungrateful and indulged in evil:
  • The parable of the Paradise promised to those who are conscious of God [is that of a Garden] through which running waters flow: [but, unlike an earthly garden,] its fruits will be everlasting, and [so will be] its shade. Such will be the destiny of those who remain conscious of God - just as the destiny of those who deny the truth will be the fire. [ar-Rad 13: 35]
  • The delights and pleasures of the Hereafter, as well as, the penalty for those who condemn themselves to darkness and the wrath of Allah are described in such great detail in the Quran that almost one quarter of it is related to the Akhira. This is what the Prophet came to convey and this is what instills meaning and purpose to our lives!

[excerpt from "In the Early Hours: Reflections on Spiritual and Self-Development" by Ustadh Khurram Murad, available to read online at http://www.youngmuslims.ca/]


Rabi' ibn 'Amir (radhi Allah 'anh) upon entering the luxurious court of Rustum, the Commander-in-Chief of the Persian armies, was asked why the Bedouin Arabs, with their poor unsophisticated lifestyle and backward civilization, had left their tents in the desert and come to fight the great advanced civilization of Persia in their centres of military power, confidently replied:

"Allah has sent us to liberate His slaves (human beings) from servitude to other slaves into the servitude of the Master of the slaves. We come to liberate YOU from the narrowness of the dunya (world) into the vastnesss of the akhira (hereafter). We have come to free YOU from the oppression of the many multitudes of religions and ways of life into the justice ('adl) of the one true Deen of Islam!"