Category Archives: Emaan

The Uthmani Dawn ☀


The nascent Ottoman Sultanate was founded at the end of the thirteenth century in northwestern Anatolia in the modern-day Bilecik Province in Turkey. The Oghuz Turks rallied around their tribal leader Osman in what was then, a small emirate – which was later to be transformed into a trans-continental empire in the centuries after his death, becoming the premier super power.  It is thus, always refreshing to learn about aspects of the values and visions these tribes held, by which Allah blessed them with honour and victory and in turn, reignited the pride of the Muslim world.

The following are excerpts from the wise counsel of Ameer Osman ibn Ertugrul (d.726H) – the founder of the Uthmani Sultanate – to his noble son and successor, Orhan I. On his deathbed, Osman called his son and imparted several pieces of gem, whose effects continued to define the character of early Uthmani leadership.

The Wise Counsel

يا بني: إذا واجهتْك في الحكم معضلةٌ فاتخذ من مشورة علماء الدين موئلًا

“O my son: If you encounter a dilemma in making judgment, seek advice from scholars of the deen.”

يا بني: لا يغرَّك الشيطانُ بجندك ومالك، وإياك أنْ تبتعدَ عن أهل الشريعة

“O my son: Do not let shaytan tempt you with your armed forces and wealth. And you should not turn away from the people of shari’ah.”

 يا بني: لسنا من هؤلاء الذين يقيمون الحروبَ لشهوةِ الحكم، أو سيطرةِ أفراد

“O my son: We are not among those who wage wars for the lust of power, or for dominating over individuals.”

يا بني: أوصيك بعلماء الأمة، أدِمْ رعايتَهم، وأكثِر من تبجيلهم، وانزِل على مشورتهم، فانهم لا يأمرون إلا بخير

“O my son: I advise you with the scholars of the ummah, take care of their needs and hold them in much esteem. And reach out to consult with them, for they don’t command anything except with goodness.”

يا بني: إياك أن تفعل أمرًا لا يُرضي الله عز وجل، وإذا صعب عليك أمرٌ فاسأل علماءَ الشريعة، فإنهم سيدلُّونك على الخير

“O my son: Do not enact an order that earns the displeasure of Allah. And if it becomes difficult for you, then ask the scholars of shari’ah, for they’ll guide you to goodness.”

واعلم يا بني: أنَّ طريقنا الوحيدَ في هذه الدنيا هو طريق الله، وأنَّ مقصدَنا الوحيدَ هو نشرُ دين الله، وأننا لسنا طلابَ جاهٍ ولا دنيا

“And know O my son: That our sole path in this dunya is the path of Allah. And that our only purpose is to spread the deen of Allah, and that we are not seekers of status/fame and dunya.”

يا بني: ليس في الدنيا أحدٌ لا تخضع رقبتُه للموت، وقد اقترب أجلي بأمر الله جل جلاله، أسلمك هذه الدولةَ وأستودعك المولى عز وجل، اعدِل في جميع شؤونك

“O my son: There is none in the dunya who does not succumb to death. I’m drawing near (to death) by the Will of Allah Almighty. I hand over to you the reigns of this dawlah, and I entrust you to the Almighty. Be just and fair in all your affairs.”



📗 العثمانيون في التاريخ والحضارة لأستاذي لدكتور المؤرِّخ محمد حرب: ص16
📗 تاريخ الدولة العثمانية للدكتور الصلابي: ص49


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Habituate Goodness 💫

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم


“Every action has an equal and opposite reaction.” thus states Newton’s third law of (natural) motion. Whatever may be your action, there is bound to be a reaction; and nothing that illustrates this theory better than the shari’ idea of recompense. Rather, a good action may return a reward greater than the act itself.

It is authentically attributed to the eminent Companion, Ibn Mas’ood رضي الله عنه that he said, when advising people of causes and consequences:

تعودوا الخير فإنما الخير في العادة

Get in the habit of doing good, for indeed doing good becomes habitual. ❞  [Al-Musannaf ibn Abi Shaybah, 4/165 (#4993)]

In other words, nurturing and priming oneself to enact good deeds will over time, accustom him to regular fulfillment of that deed. And it is revealed:

هَلْ جَزَاءُ الْإِحْسَانِ إِلَّا الْإِحْسَانُ

Is the reward for good (anything) except good? ❞  [Al-Rahman, 60]

Is Seeing Believing?

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم


Abu Hurayrah رضي الله عنه narrated that the Messenger of Allah ﷺ said:

رأى عيسى بن مريم رجلا يسرق ، فقال له : أسرقت ؟ قال : كلا ، والله الذي لا إله إلا هو ، فقال عيسى : آمنت بالله ، وكذبت عيني

“Jesus, son of Mary saw a man stealing (something) and asked him, ‘Did you steal?’ He replied, ‘Most definitely not, by Allah besides whom there is no ilah’. Jesus said, ‘I believe in Allah and my eyes have deceived me’.” [1]

Jesus عليهم السلام had such awe for Allah ﷻ that to honour His Mention, he attributed the error to his eyes instead. Ibn Qayyim said, “The truth is that his heart was overwhelmed with (the love of) Allah, and an oath by a liar (in Allah’s Name) made him lay the charge to his eyesight…” [2]

We see in the folds of the story how the great Prophet of Allah attributed the wrong on himself despite the fact he viewed a wrong having taken place. If we compare such attitudes to what we see today of much mistrust and suspicion that occurs between Muslims, for things that may not have even taken place; and where abstracts and hearsay are common; and where even apologies are rarely accepted… far are we from the Words of Allah:

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا اجْتَنِبُوا كَثِيرًا مِّنَ الظَّنِّ إِنَّ بَعْضَ الظَّنِّ إِثْمٌ

“O you who believe! Avoid suspicion much (as possible), for suspicion in some cases is a sin…” [3]

Abu Hurayrah رضي الله عنه narrated that the Messenger of Allah ﷺ said:

إيَّاكُمْ والظَّنِّ، فإنَّ الظَّنَّ أكْذَبُ الحَدِيثِ

“Beware of conjecture, for conjecture is the most lying of speech” [4]

And contrary to conjecture, there is no doubt that Muslims need to invigorate Ihsan, and show genuine want in securing and safeguarding fraternal relationships. Strong bonds enliven hearts and reassure strength; and as an old Arab saying states, “resisting conjecture, is better than to offend”, so we need to find ways to resist supposition and remove negative temptation from our hearts. Some points of benefit that can be extracted from the original hadeeth are:

1. The humility of Jesus عليهم السلام and his open heart in accepting the witness of his people.
2. His not holding suspicion despite witnessing the theft because of a mighty oath.
3. That theft was a crime in all previous religions before Islam.
4. That the man who stole was likely unbeknown to Jesus عليهم السلام.
5. To maintain husn ad-dhann (having good opinions of others) as a rule, and not to always opt for exceptions to the rule.
6. Reconciling upon genuine goodness is better than to become estranged and alienate.

Abu Darda’ رضي الله عنه narrated that the Messenger of Allah ﷺ said:

ألا أخبركم بأفضل من درجة الصيام والصلاة والصدقة ؟ قالوا : بلى ، قال : إصلاح ذات البين ، وفساد ذات البين الحالقة

“Shall I inform you of what is better than the rank of (voluntary) fasting, prayer and charity?” The Companions said, “Yes (O Messenger of Allah)”. He said, “Reconciling (i.e. making peace) between yourselves, for discord between you is the shaver.” [5]

In the version of at-Tirmidhi (2509) it explains what the “shaver” is: هي الحالقة لا أقول تحلق الشعر ولكن تحلق الدين [“…(I do not say that) it shaves hair, but rather it shaves (one’s) Deen.”]

How many relationships have led to ruination due to suspicion, argumentation and misunderstanding and other such anomalies? The corruption caused by such outcome eat away at a person’s Islam until their unity weakens and victory departs from them. [6]

May Allah ﷺ strengthen and continually renew our bonds of brotherhood, for this is extremely hard upon Shaytan.



[1] Saheeh al-Bukhari, 3444
[2] see ‘Ighathatil Lahfan’ of Ibn al-Qayyim
[3] Al-Hujuraat, 12
[4] Agreed Upon
[5] Abu Da’wud, 4919 – graded as saheeh by al-Albani and al-Waadi’
[6] See also ‘Fath al-Bari’, 3260 and this explanatory article.

Glimpse into Merit of ‘Ilm

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم


It is recorded by Ibn ‘Abd Al-Barr, in his ‘Jaami’ Bayan al-‘Ilm’ [1],  that Mu’ad Ibn Jabal رضي الله عنه said:

تعلموا العلم ، فإن تعلمه لله خشية ، وطلبه عبادة ، ومذاكرته تسبيح ، والبحث عنه جهاد ، وتعليمه لمن لا يعلمه صدقة ، وبذله لأهله قربة ، لأنه معالم الحلال والحرام ، ومنار سبيل أهل الجنة ، وهو الأنيس في الوحشة ، والصاحب في الغربة ، والمحدث في الخلوة ، والدليل على السراء والضراء ، والسلاح على الأعداء ، والزين عند الأخلاء ، يرفع الله به أقواماً فيجعلهم في الخير قادة وأئمة ، تقتص آثارهم ، ويقتدى بأفعالهم ، وينتهى إلى رأيهم ، ترغب الملائكة في خلتهم ، وبأجنحتها تمسحهم ، يستغفر لهم كل رطب ويابس ، وحيتان البجر وهوامه ، وسباع البر وأنعامه ، لأن العلم حياة القلوب من الجهل ، ومصابيح الأبصار من الظلم . يبلغ العبد بالعلم منازل الأخيار ، والدرجات العلى في الدنيا والآخرة . التفكر فيه بعدل الصيام ، ومدارسته تعدل القيام ، به توصل الأرحام ، وب يعرف الحلال من الحرام ، هو إمام العمل ، والعمل تابعه ، يلهمه السعداء ويحرمه الإشقياء

❝ Aquire knowledge, for indeed seeking it for Allah (develops) fear. Seeking it is worship; studying it is glorification; researching is striving; teaching it to the one who does not know is a charity. Humbling towards its people is a drawing nearness, and it is an illuminated path to Paradise. It is a comfort in times of loneliness; a companion in times of strangeness; and it provides comfort in times of solitude. It is a guide in times of prosperity and adversity, a weapon against the enemy; an adornment among (close) friends. With it Allah raises up a group of people placing them among the best of leaders and imams, whose stories (of achievement) are followed and actions emulated. Their opinions are always sought; the Angels are eager to touch them with their wings; and every moist and dry patch (on earth) seeks forgiveness for them.

The fish and creatures in the sea; animals on land all seek blessings for him. Because knowledge gives life to the hearts from ignorance; brightens eyes in the darkness [and strengthens the body from weakness]. Through it, the slave (of Allah) reaches ranks of the righteous and pious, and a high status in this world and the Hereafter. Reflecting (upon knowledge) is as (voluntary) fasting and studying it equates to standing (in prayer). Through it the ties of kinship are kept, the lawful and unlawful are known. It is the leader of actions; and the one who acts is inspired by the successful and ignored by the wretched. ❞


[1] #268; (with a weak mawqoof sanad)

Genius of Misdirection

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم


The Qur’an is the most potent force against shaytan and his evil designs. If people show love for the Qur’an, and want to read, study and contemplate its meanings, shaytan will change tact and increase its awe in a person’s heart. To the extent that the person becomes afraid to even approach the Qur’an out of a false sense of respect.

Ibn Hubayrah رحمه الله (d.560H), the jurist of Baghdad said:

ومن مكايد الشيطان تنفيره عبادالله من تدبّرالقرآن، لعلمه أن الهدى واقع عند التدبّر، فيقول هذه مخاطرة، حتى يقول الإنسان أنا لا أتكلم في القرآن تورعا

It is from the deception of shaytan that he holds back the slave of Allah from pondering and contemplating upon the Qur’an. For he knows the actual reality of guidance is (found) by such taddabur, so he (discourages them) by saying, ‘there is danger in this’… until people (begin to say), ‘I can’t speak about the Qur’an so I’ll abstain (from it).❞ [Ibn Rajab, ‘Dhayl Tabaqat al-Hanabilah’, 3/273]

Shaytan tries to exploit extremities in people’s nature. If they incline towards goodness in seeking what will benefit them, he disheartens them and tries to scare them away to the opposite end.

If this fails, he switches to genuis of misdirection, as was narrated that Abu Bakr ibn al-Arabi (d.543H), who said:

*{ إن إبليس حين لم يستطع أن يشغل الناس عن القرآن شغلهم به عنه }*

أي: أنه جعلهم يشتغلون بشيء فيه لا ينفعهم في معادهم يشغلهم عما ينفعهم في دينهم وآخرتهم

“Indeed when Iblees can’t hold people back from (busying themselves with) the Qur’an, he (strives to) busy them with other than it.”

Meaning: He makes them engage with something that does not bring them benefit; repeatedly distracting them from what will benefit them in their Deen and the Hereafter. ❞ [‘Tahzeeb al-Qur’an’ li ‘Abd Al-‘Azeez al-Harbi, p.42]


May Allah make us from Ahlul Qur’an, His special people. Ameen.


Even the Ugly is Made Pleasing

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم


Allah سبحانه و تعالى Said:

وَلَا تَقْرَبُوا الزِّنَا ۖ إِنَّهُ كَانَ فَاحِشَةً وَسَاءَ سَبِيلًا

“And do not (even) approach Zina (illicit sexual intercourse). Indeed, it is a Faahishah and a most evil way.” [1]

Shaytan and his army try their utmost to cause two people to commit sin by being involved in a process that has very real consequences in leading towards having an illicit relationship. It’s an act that destroys families and negatively impacts communities and society at large. Shaytan makes each of them look pleasing to each other to entice this effect.

In Surah Al-Noor (30-31), Allah Commands the believing men and women to lower their gaze and guard their chastity for indeed the serious nature of zina commences with letting one’s gaze wander freely, causing sickness in the heart and leading to immoral risks. Whereas lowering the gaze is one of the primary means of keeping oneself safe from that. Yet we are told about the ease by which eyes fall into looking at the haram.

The Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم said:  كل عين زانية  “All eyes are (susceptible to being) adulterous.” [2]

And he صلى الله عليه وسلم also aid:  فالعينان زناهما النظر  “… the zina of the eye is looking (at the unlawful) …” [3]

Abdullah ibn Mas’ood رضي الله عنه is reported to have narrated that the Messenger of Allaah صلى الله عليه وسلم said:

النظرة سهم مسموم من سهام إبليس

“Gazing (an unlawful) look are poisoned arrows of Shaytan…” [4]

Although the chain for this narration is weak, the meaning remains correct for such is the strength of the eye’s perception of the unlawful, that it readily leads to weakening of the self’s defences and allows an opening for shaytani whispering to get louder, until illicit intercourse takes place. As Anas ibn Malik narrated that he heard the Messenger of Allah صلى الله عليه وسلم say:

فزنا العين النظر وزنا اللسان المنطق والنفس تمنَّى وتشتهي والفرْج يصدق ذلك كله ويكذبه

“…The zina of the eyes is looking, the zina of the tongue is speaking, one may wish and desire, and the private parts confirm that or deny it.” [5]

One of the major tabi’een, Ataa’ ibn Abi Rabaah (d.114H) said words of profound insight and self-concern:

لو ائتمنت على بيت مال لكنت أمينا، ولا آمن نفسي على أمة شوهاء

“If I was entrusted with the Muslim treasury, I would be (found to be) trustworthy. I would not however, trust myself (being left alone) with (even) an ugly woman.”

Commenting on this statement, ad-Dhahabi said: صدق رحمه الله – ففي الحديث: ألا لا يخلون رجل بامرأة، فإن ثالثهما الشيطان “He spoke the truth, rahimahullah. As we find in the Hadeeth, “No man is alone with a woman except that shaytan is the third (one present).” [6]

It was the open honesty and khashiya’ (a sense of acute fear and awareness of Allah) of our righteous predecessors that enabled them to acknowledge the ground reality surrounding them so that they could safeguard their own selves from falling into sin, as well as influencing others towards restraint. The first step in confronting a harm or doubt, is to admit that such a harm and doubt exists. Only then can the necessary steps be taken to remedy and overcome the risks associated with them.

Abu Al-Fuwaris Shah ibn Shuja’ Al-Kirmani said:

من غض بصره عن المحارم وأمسك نفسه عن الشهوات وعمر باطنه بدوام المراقبة وظاهره بإتباع السنة وعود نفسه أكل الحلال لم تخطئ له فراسة

“Whoever lowers his gaze from what is prohibited and restrains himself from worldly desires and inhabits his inner self with self-assessment and his outer self with the following of the Sunnah, and habituates himself with eating the permissible shall not err in his (decisive) insights.” [7]

The Light of Allah enters the heart of His believing slave, who complies with His Orders and avoids what He has Prohibited. This heart turns to good things from every side, and if the scourge of evil turns into dark clouds from everywhere, they are repelled for it wants nothing from blameworthiness and misguidance. This light is revealed to a heart that accepts goodness and does not want to remain blinded and wandering in the darkness (of sin).

May Allah protect us from everything that brings about His displeasure, and grant us the ability and strength to prevent our desires from taking pathways of blame and sin. Ameen.




[1] Al-Isra’ 32
[2] At-Tirmidhi, 2786, who graded it as hasan saheeh
[3] Saheeh Muslim, 2657
[4] Hilyat al-Awliya, 6/107; Tabarani and Al-Hakim
[5] Al-Bukhari, 5889; Muslim, 2657
[6] Siyar A’lam An-Nubala’, 5/88

[7] Al-Suyuti, ‘Miftah al-Jannah’

Secrecy of Sincerity

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
الحـمد لله والصلاة والسلام على رسول الله وعلى آلـه وصحبه ومن والاه


Allah سبحانه و تعالى Said:

ادْعُوا رَبَّكُمْ تَضَرُّعًا وَخُفْيَةً ۚ إِنَّهُ لَا يُحِبُّ الْمُعْتَدِينَ

“Invoke your Rabb with humility and in secret. He likes not the aggressors.”

Invoking and imploring Allah سبحانه و تعالى with humility and secretly is a cure for arrogance and aggression and all similar traits. Secrecy can’t be achieved except with sincerity, and sincerity is an attribute that requires an internal conditioning until one’s outwardly actions and speech is of the same quality as his inward state of being; keeping his conduct free from the any influence of other creatures. It is a blessing and a gift that Allah grants to anyone He loves among His servants.

Mentioning Zakariyyah عليه السلام, Allah سبحانه و تعالى Said:

إِذْ نَادَىٰ رَبَّهُ نِدَاءً خَفِيًّا
“When he called out his Rabb, a call in secret.” [Maryam, 3]

‘Khafiya’ is something that is hidden or concealed, and this is how Zakariyyah عليه السلام made his call, in a humbled low voice in the middle of the night. And it is the only time this word has been used in this way in the Qur’an. Ibn Qayyim mentioned in his ‘Badaa’iul Fawa’id’ that this prayer in such a quiet manner reveals a number of benefits, amongst them is that it leads to sincerity.

In his ‘Madaarij al-Saalikeen’, he records Junayd al-Baghdadi’s amazing description about ikhlas when someone asks him ‘what is ikhlas?’:

الإخلاص سر بين الله وبين العبد لا يعلمه ملك فيكتبه ولا شيطان فيفسده ولا هوى فيميله

“It is a secret between Allah and His slave. Angels know nothing of it (so as) to record it, and Shaytan can’ corrupt it, and nor can desire affect it.”

This beautiful definition can be understood in light of the hadeeth that mentions how, on the Day of Judgement, Angels will present sealed records of deeds to Allah, and will then be told by Allah to strike out certain deeds and reject them. The Angels will say they did not know except the goodness of the (rejected) deeds. Allah سبحانه و تعالى will Tell them those deeds were not performed for His Sake – see  ‘Al-Ikhlas wal-Niyyah’ , p. 45

One of our Salaf said something of tremendous reflection, “whoever sees sincerity in his sincerity, his sincerity is itself in need of sincerity. The destruction of every sincere person lies in his sincerity to the extent that he sees sincerity in himself. When he abandons seeing sincerity in himself he will be sincere and purified.” From these profound words of advice is that we should invest in secret acts of worship in order to bring ourselves closer to Allah, and so that we can hope to reap the rewards when we meet Allah سبحانه و تعالى  – All too often we become wholly extrospective and lose track of examining our own spiritual development and means to strengthen our ikhlas and all the paths leading to it.

One of the paths is nicely explained by Dhu’n-Noon al-Misri (d.245H), when highlighting three known symptoms of sincere devotion:

1. Being able to show indifference to any praise or any blame that comes from the people.
2. Having lack of interest in the impression made by one’s good deeds.
3. Holding the reward for his actions as a matter to be decided in the akhirah.

‘Ali ibn Abi Talib رضي الله عنه said, “Charity is the righteous deeds that you do not want any praise for, except from Allah.” [‘Al-Ikhlas wal-Niyyah’ , p. 35]

Abu Bakr ad-Daqqaq Al-Shafi’i said about the shortcoming of those who try to be sincere, that he has, “the tendency to admire his sincere devotion. If Allah wishes to purify his sincere devotion, He will rid his sincerity of the tendency to admire his sincere devotion, so he will then be a mukhallas [one who has been made sincere through purification], rather than a mukhlis [one who tries to be sincere].”

Imam Nawawi said, “Know, that sincerity is often affected by the disease ‘ujub (self-conceit). Whoever has ujub with charity, then his charity is erased. Similarly, people who boast about being charitable, then their charity is erased.” [See Ta’theer al-Anfas’, p. 584]

May Allah grant us the tawfeeq to become constant in evaluating our intentions and weighing our intentions for His Sake alone.