How I Wish Mawlid Would Be…

Bismillaahirrahmaanirraheem…

Assalaamualaikum Wr. Wb.

Say, [O Muhammad], “Shall we [believers] inform you of the greatest losers as to [their] deeds? [They are] those whose effort is lost in worldly life, while they think that they are doing well in work.” (Surah al-Kahf: 103-104)

With the heated debate on the permissibility of Mawlid, I can’t just sit back but feel sad that this is the one particular subject that can divide the Ummah. Friendships become strained because of the differences in opinion about Mawlid. Some just choose to remain mum about it as if it’s a taboo topic. At the same time I’ve seen people who are pro-Mawlid saying “if you don’t agree with Mawlid, then just keep your mouth shut and keep your opinion to yourself!”. I feel that is a totally wrong approach in no matter what issue (especially religious issues) and we need to discuss it in the most gracious manner (An-Nahl: 125).

The argument for Mawlid is that it sparks the love for Rasulullah SAW. I love Rasulullah SAW, just like you do. In all honesty, I am not a Mawlid goer but these are what I truly wish to see in Mawlid events…

I wish in Mawlid there will be more stories about our beloved Prophet Muhammad SAW. We often say,”We love Rasulullah!” But… do we even know his life story? His battles, his struggles, his calamaties that he endured for us? How about his achievements, which should illuminate the hearts of believers? How can we love someone without knowing his background? Why exactly he’s a great man and what has he done for the Ummah?

I wish in Mawlid we learn the steps on how to take precautionary measures not to lie about Prophet Muhammad SAW aka his hadith. It takes a certain level of knowledge to recognise ahadith (pl. for hadith) that are Sahih (true) from the many many Dhoif (weak) and Maudu’ (fabricated/ false) ones. To know the authenticity of a hadith, we may even need someone who specialises in this field to authenticate it. In this age of fitnah, it is easy for someone to make up a hadith. Although the content of the “hadith” may look sound and wonderful, but that doesn’t mean that it’s okay to back it up with our Prophet Muhammad SAW’s name. So for us to truly show our love towards our beloved Prophet SAW, we must be careful when sharing a hadith cz spreading a false hadith means that we’re lying about him. I don’t think anyone would like it when he/she is being lied upon. And for that, we need knowledge.

I wish in Mawlid there won’t be a mix of entertainment and Selawat. It’s saddening when some of us have our preferred Selawat over another just because the music is nicer than the other. We attend Mawlid because we want to Selawat upon our beloved Prophet SAW. Hence, I wish that Mawlid will teach supplications that were taught by the man himself, Prophet Muhammad SAW. There are so many of it, we won’t run out of it insyaAllah. Hisnul Muslim (Fortress of a Muslim) is a classic example.

I wish in Mawlid we glorify Allah by reading the Qur’an more and contemplate on its meanings. In the end, what our beloved Prophet Muhammad SAW did in his lifetime was to glorify Allah alone and do everything for His sake. If we love him, we will do what he did, right? I’m just afraid there will come a point of time whereby when there’s Majlis Reciting Qur’an and Majlis Maulid happening concurrently, the latter receives a lot more crowd.

I wish after Mawlid, we will be able to emulate Prophet Muhammad SAW’s characteristics in our daily lives. Rasulullah SAW is the best interpreter of the Quran and his exalted standard of character (68:4) should be followed by every Muslim. Although it’s impossible to be like him, we can still try our best to emulate his characters. He did everything out of his love for Islam and not even once he did something based on his self interest. If we can’t fight our desires for the sake of this religion, how insincere our love is for Rasulullah SAW and Allah SWT?

I wish Mawlid could unite the Ummah. As we already know, some of our brothers and sisters do not support the idea of Mawlid. We should take into consideration about this group. If we love our own brothers just like how we love ourselves, we shouldn’t leave anyone behind. We shouldn’t label anyone – Salafi, Wahabi, Sufi etc. We are Muslims. We should try our best to create an event that will unite the Ummah so that we will be strong as ONE and nothing could shake us.

Lastly, I wish that we do what Rasulullah SAW did and leave whatever he has never practised. After all, isn’t that the best way to love him?

For a start, to truly show our love towards our beloved Prophet Muhammad SAW, we should start grabbing a book about the life of our Prophet (peace be upon him). Immerse ourselves into history. Don’t only read it as texts, feel how it’s like being in his shoes. He’s a human being; just like you and I. His struggles and achievements were all real. Imitate his footsteps. There’s so much to learn about and from him.

Book recommendations: The Sealed Nectar by Sheikh Mubarakfuri, The Noble Life of the Prophet by Dr Ali as-Solaby

People may justify Mawlid by saying that it’s the easiest and most effective way to attract the younger generations to come back to Islam. But my dear brothers and sisters in faith, if it is that easy to bring people back into Islam, then why we have never heard of Rasulullah SAW doing it? If it’s very effective, then why wouldn’t he start Majlis Zikr knowing that the Pagan Arabs’ lifestyle were nothing but mere entertainment? Are we underestimating the wisdom of the most perfect person ever created?

“…This day, I have perfected your religion for you, completed My favour upon you, and have chosen for you Islam as your religion…” [al-Maa’idah 5:3]

By this, I only wish our Ummah can join hands to be united again. If our Mawlid still disunite us, then ask ourselves, do we really love the Prophet and his teachings or we love our events and our singings?

Forgive me if I’ve offended anyone. I have no intention at all to spark any argument. I just wish to stop the labelling and I wish for all of us to start being proud by calling ourselves Muslims who follow the Qur’an and our beloved Prophet Muhammad SAW’s Sunnah as close as possible, InsyaAllah.

Wallaahualam.

Am I Ready For Marriage?

Bismillaahirrahmaanirraheem…

Assalamualaikum Wr. Wb.

Being married at a generally young age of 22, I have received quite a number of questions that circulate around “how do you know you’re prepared for marriage?” Truth is, you wouldn’t really know it till you’re being put into the situation. What you imagine about what your ideal marriage life gonna be, might just be a fairytale. But here are just a few guidelines which I personally feel that may gauge how successful your marriage life gonna be.

1. Do Not Marry Your Lover

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I may not be accurate at this. But just think about it. Before you’re married to your so called other half, the happiest being on earth is Syaitan. Syaitan will do all he can to make the relationship as pleasant, wonderful and beautiful as it can be. A joke people always make about lovey dovey couples: even your fart is fragrance to your partner. Syaitan hates it when we abide Allah SWT commands and so, he hates when two souls tie a knot in the name of Allah SWT. Syaitan will try his best to create chaos in the household and break it up. Now, imagine your used to be loveliest other half, turns into the most unfavourable person on this universe! And you wonder “what happened to my 2 years boyfriend? It’s just a month after nikah!”. (You can read “Islamic Couple?“)

As cliche as this may sound but truth is, you won’t really know your lover until you live in the same house with him/her. Doesn’t matter how long you are together but all the acts before marriage were just nothing but mere pretence. I have heard several cases whereby couples were together for six seven years, but within a couple months of marriage, they went their separate ways. Are we amongst those who are making the Syaitan satisfied?

2. Obey Allah SWT and You Will Obey Your Spouse

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I believe obedience is an act of love and sincerity. Obedience to Allah SWT is an ‘ibadah.

A cousin of mine once went for a job interview and she is a hijabi. She will need to take off her scarf in order to be accepted for the job. She refused and the interviewer had to turn her down. She then confidently said “if people don’t obey what God commands them to do, they will never obey you.” MasyaAllah. Such bravery.

How harsh it may sound, but reality is even harsher. Just look at the divorce rate amongst Malay Muslim in Singapore? It’s increasing at a very worrying rate. Are you marrying for the right reasons?

3. Marriage is Not About You…Nor is it About Him/Her.

I wish to say this over and over and over again. For a marriage to be successful, you must push your spouse towards Jannah. But more often than not, we see that people are doing the otherwise instead. If you’re not ready to do everything and anything for the sake of Allah SWT, then you will always come into an argument with your spouse.

In a Hadith (Divine inspiration from Allah): “The best of you are those who are the best to their wives, and I am the best of you to my wives.” [at-Tirmidhi]

Usually men who are not learned about the characteristics of our beloved Prophet PBUH like to take advantage over their wives. Recently I’ve read a post on Facebook whereby an anonymous sister complaints that “every time my husband and I argue he always say most women are going to hell, women are married to be slaves to their husband, cook and clean after them and only to produce children.”

In a long Hadith in Sahih Bukhari and Muslim, Rasulullah says that “…A man is the guardian of his family and he is responsible for them. A woman is the guardian of her husband’s home and his children and she is responsible for them…”

As people are becoming more career minded and have their own goals in life, the Hadith above is slowly becoming less and less popular although it comes from the most authentic sources. We’re too concern about this life that we forget what is the real purpose of life. There are a lot of sacrifices that are needed in marriage but when we marry because of Allah SWT, all those sacrifices will be worth it when we enter Jannah later, insyaAllah.

4. Love Allah SWT and Rasulullah SAW First

This is the most valuable lesson of life that I’ve gathered. We are always hoping for human’s love that we forget the ultimate Divine love. Human’s love can fail but Allah’s and Rasulullah’s love will never fail on us. It is when we let go off all our fears and wants of this dunya, that we will truly achieve the sweetness of our Creator’s love. It may be a struggle at first, but believe me that you won’t find even an inch or regret for making this decision.

I remembered when I decided to surrender my life to Allah SWT, I let go of almost every.single.thing – tangible and intangible. I remembered asking for Allah SWT to fill my heart with His love and Rasulullah’s love before filling it with human’s love. I remembered when syaitan whispered into my ear that by doing so, I will not marry because it will take forever for my diseased heart to be purified. It was tough. I cried almost every night for Allah to strengthen my Imaan but I realised how Merciful He was when just within a few months, He met me with my husband. Subhanallah. Indeed it is true when you come walking to Allah SWT, He will come running for you. (You can read “How I Met My Husband“)

At the end of the day, touch your heart and ask yourself. “Why do I want to marry?” If the reason is other than to please Allah SWT, then do a recheck of intention.

Another next common question would be “I’m ready for marriage! But… my parents are not supportive marrying at a young age.”.

It may look quite impossible at first to convince your parents. Your intention to marry may be fully for Allah SWT, but your parents still see you as their baby – not mentally or financially prepared. You may have full trust in Allah SWT that He will take care of your all your affairs but your parents may not see it the same way as you. One thing that I learn, you should not have the mindset to change your parent’s perspectives by throwing at them all the Islamic rulings and all the Hadith whereby Rasulullah SAW married Aisha r.a when she’s still young. So here’s what you can do:

1. If you’re close to your parents and you’re comfortable talking to your parents face to face, get a time when your parents are calm. Talk to your mum and your dad on two separate occasions. I realised I always talk to my mum when we’re just laying on bed and have a casual talk, and as for my dad, I’ll talk to him in the car. If you’re not comfortable talking face to face, then message at the right time.

2. The trick is to let your parents know how vulnerable you are if you do not do something (for the sake of Allah of cz). For example, even when I wanted to wear the niqab, I said to my mum that I needed to wear it cz I need to tone myself down. It’s all about letting your parents feel what you’re going through. Let them know the changes that you will be going through. Share with them how marriage can turn you into a better person and a better slave of Allah.

3. After that, then you can share with them the Islamic rulings and share about Rasulullah SAW’s story. You may also want to share about some stories from people that you know who marry at such young age and they are still doing great! You can share with them too how relying on Allah SWT is essential because He is the One that provides us with rizq.

4. Wake up in the middle of the night and make lots and lots of prayers. If you understand that you should rely solely on Allah SWT, then know that only Allah SWT can change your parents’ hearts. InsyaAllah what is meant for you will not miss you. And even after all those efforts you still don’t succeed then know that it is not meant for you and Allah SWT has better plans in store for you.

So, are you prepared for marriage?

WallahuAlam.