Please find below some advice regarding a matter which we may regard as insignificant but was identified by the scholars of the past as in need of rectifying. Shaykh Abd al-Wahab al-Sharani said in his work Tanbih al-Mughtarrin p.128:
And from the Salaf’s character traits – Allah the Exalted be pleased with them – was their regularly asking about the condition of their friends, this was in order to be able to assist them regarding their needs such as food, clothing, money, paying of debts…and the possessors of this character trait in this age are rare. People in this time practice the opposite of this, a person may say to his friend, “how are you?” To which his friend will respond, “I am fine” but in fact hiding his true state of affairs because of his knowing of the emptiness of heart of his friend…rather many a time a person will pass by his brother and say, “How are you” but not wait for an answer, thus the one asking does not wait for an answer nor does the person being asked trouble himself to utter a response.
It was due to this that Sayyidi Ali al-Khawwas – Allah the Exalted have mercy on him – would say: If you do not have a firm resolve to help your brother or share in his worries or supplicate for him – then do not ask him “How are you” for this will become a case of hypocrisy.
Hatim al-Asam – Allah the Exalted have mercy on him – said: if you say to your friend: How are you this morning? and he replies: “I am in need of a particular thing”, however you do not deal with it seriously and do not fulfil his need, then your saying “How are you this morning” is a mockery of him, and this is predominant amongst the folk of this age.
We have detailed elsewhere on this blog the great Indian scholar Shah Waliullah al-Dehlawi’s link to the Ba Alawi tariqah by means of his Hajj journey where he met scholarly members of the family in the Hijaz. Shaykh Muhammad Ashiq al-Phulati in the biography of his teacher (Qawl al-Jalli p.100-101) records an additional incident related to the Ba Alawi order writing that:
An Arab man by the name of Ahmad Ba Raja was afflicted by fever, an illness which increased daily. One day he saw in a dream that he was at the tomb of Sayyid Abd al-Rahman Saqqaf who is from the Sadat of the family of Ali (Allah be pleased with him) and is buried in Hadramawt. At the tomb he found that our Hazrat-e-Aqdas (Shah Waliullah) was also present and that he recited Surah Yasin to donate the reward to the deceased. This man then proceeded to recite Surah Mulk, after which both of them recited Fatiha. Hazrat-e-Aqdas gave this man a small amount of halwa and said, “Eat this, for the cure for your illness is in this halwa.”
After this the man awoke and came to to visit Hazrat-e-Aqdas and informed him of the whole dream. Shah Waliullah affirmed this dream and proceeded to recite Surah Yasin, Surah Mulk and then recited Fatiha for this saint (Sayyid Abd al-Rahman Saqqaf). Shah Waliullah then asked for some halwa and said to the man, “Eat this, the cure for your illness is in this”, the man duly ate and went to his home. It was only a few days later that he returned back to Shah Waliullah and said, “I ate the halwa and my tribulation has vanished.” (Akaltu al-Halwa Zalat al-Balwa).
Imam Abd al-Wahab al-Sharani’s work entitled Tanbih al-Mughtarrin (which could be roughly translated as “A note to the deluded”) is a book I have dipped in to many times over the past 15 years. In this book the author highlights the different akhlaq (character traits) of the salaf (pious early Muslims) which the people and scholars of his era had abandoned. I will InshAllah see if I can share some extracts from it in the near future, in the meantime the introduction to the work presented below gives a fascinating insight in to the reason for its being written and the reception it received. Imam Abd al-Wahab al-Sharani said:
“From the main reasons for my writing this work was what I witnessed from the investigation undertaken by the staff of Mawlana, the Sultan Sulayman bin Uthman in second half of the 10th [Islamic] century looking in to the theft of his wealth by government employees and others, and their reason for [this investigation] was in order to support him.
I noticed that none of the scholars of the sacred law had undertaken an investigation – with the intention of supporting the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace) – in to the prominent akhlaq of the Muhammadan shariah which had become extinct, just as the staff of Mawlana the Sultan (May Allah grant him victory) had done so.
I was overcome by a feeling of protectiveness (ghayrah al-imaniyyah) to the sacred law and thus authored this book as clarification as to what has disappeared from the prominent akhlaq from the world of scholars of the outer and inner (al-zahir wal-batin). It is a work which is beneficial to every jurist and Sufi in this age to the point that perhaps none of them are without need of looking in to it as you will find out when you examine the book – InshAllah Taala.
This book is akin to a sword striking the neck of every unqualified claimant to being a Shaykh in this time. This book will bankrupt him because he will find that he is divorced from the akhlaq of righteous people just as snake sheds its skin.
I know a group of people who have become aware of this book and are grieved, if it was possible for them to steal it and delete its contents they would do so out of fear that a person who holds them in esteem will read it and as a result change their view regarding them when they see that they do not possess the akhlaq of the righteous people whom they claim to be the deputies of.
It is more appropriate that they had rejoiced and been happy at its being written for all of it is sincere advice, and they will not find anyone in this age who will give the likes of this advice.”
One of the hidden elderly scholarly gems in the city of Mecca is Shaykh Abdul Qadir Dabwan, someone I have had the fortune to visit for several years now since coming to know of him. It occurred to me on a visit to Mecca several years ago to ask about the students of the great Shaykh Abdullah al-Lahji, someone who I (and numerous others) love dearly for his phenomenal commentary on the Shamail. When I asked our teacher Shaykh Khalid al-Turkestani about students of Shaykh al-Lahji, he replied, “The senior most living student in Mecca is Shaykh Abdul Qadir Dabwan, he has an itr shop near the Haram belonging to the Abdul Qadir Qurashi chain, more than this I do not know as I don’t have a contact number for him.” This information was sufficient for me, and after the process of elimination and visiting a number of itr shops around the Haram al-Makki by the grace of Allah (Most High) I managed to locate Shaykh Abdul Qadir’s shop. One of the texts he gifted me was the 40 hadith collection of his teacher written for the students of the Sawlatiyyah school. Please find below a pdf of a translation of this text alongside explanatory footnotes I compiled for the aid of teachers. This text received a small private print of 100 copies in 2011 from the Karima al-Marwaziyya Foundation and was studied in High Wycombe in the Ramadan of that year.
From the blurb of the first edition is the following:
Shaykh Abdullah bin Saeed al-Lahji was born in Hadramawt, Yemen in 1343 Hijri. He studied extensively with a number of scholars in his native Yemen before coming to Makkah to perform Hajj in 1374 Hijri. He stayed for a year and in 1377 Hijri moved permanently to Makkah where he resided until he passed away in 1410 Hijri aged 67 years old.
During his time in Makkah he taught in the historic Al-Sawlatiyyahschool for 23 years as well as being honoured with teaching in the Masjid al-Haram.
Shaykh al-Lahji had a number of students, but is perhaps best known in scholarly circles for his amazing handwritten 2,200 page, four volume commentary on Qadi Yusuf al-Nabhani’s work on the Prophetic Shamail.
These 40 hadith were compiled by him for students of the Sawlatiyyah school, and was published during his lifetime. We hope this text will also be of benefit to English speaking students.
Please find in this pdf a collection of short works which can be recited during a gathering or when alone. The works are taken from a variety of celebrated scholars and consist of the following:
1, Qasīda ‘Iqd al-Thamīn by Shaykh Abu Bakr al-Mullā : A poem in praise of the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) which can be sung to the tune of the Burda.
2. Selected Prophetic Supplications for Morning & Evening (Wasīlatul Falāḥ)
by Shaykh Abu Bakr al-Mullā
3. A Prayer for the Muslim World by Shaykh Yusuf al-Nabhānī: A short collection of concise prayers for the relief of suffering across the Muslim world.
4. Ḥizb Imām al-Nawawī via Sayyid Muhammad bin ‘Alawī al-Mālikī
5. Beneficial Prayers by Shaykh Abu Bakr al-Mullā : A collection of Quranic verses and Prophetic supplications which the author selected from the Hizb al-Azam of Mulla Ali al-Qari.
6. Selections from Dua Khatm al-Qurān of Shaykh Abdullah al-Khaṭīb al-Ja‘farī & Shaykh Abu Bakr al-Mullā : A combination of two works on this topic which will facilitate those who have completed a Quran recital to donate the reward of their recital to the deceased.
7. Forty Ṣalawāt from Hadith by Imām Taqī al-Dīn al-Subkī : Taken from the classic work Shifa al-Siqam.
The following order of events to take place on the day of judgement has been summarized from a work on aqidah by Shaykh Mustafa al-Khin, (a recent Sunni scholar from Damascus). I found it useful in its explaining how the different Quranic verses and hadith link together.
The order of events is as follows;
After the dead are resurrected they are taken to the gathering place.
They will head towards the Hawd (Lake) as they will be thirsty. Note: each Prophet will have a Hawd as per the hadith in Tirmidhi.
In the gathering place there will be intense heat as the sun draws closer. Note: some people will not suffer here as per the hadith of those shaded by the Throne. A hadith in the Musnad of Imam Ahmad mentions that this stage will pass very quickly for the pious.
The great intercession of the Prophet Muhammad (Allah bless him and give him peace) will then take place for the reckoning to begin. This is after people rush to other prophets asking them to intercede.
Then the accounting (hisab) will take place of actions. Note: people will differ on this stage, some bypassing it as being those who ‘enter paradise without being taken to account’.
After this a person receives their book regarding their actions.
Then there will be the weighing of actions. Note: those who have equal level good and bad actions are referred to as the people of Araf.
Then people will traverse the sirat, some falling off in to the hellfire.
Then people will enter Paradise, at their head the Prophet Muhammad (Allah bless him and give him peace).
We ask Allah Taala to make us from those who drink from Hawd, are under the shade of the throne, are not taken to account, receive our books in the right hand, have a heavy scale of good actions. Traverse the sirat easily and enter Paradise. Amin
Please find below a short animation introducing a new unique course on the fiqh of inheritance taught in an easy to understand manner. If interested in studying this course please get in touch via firstname.lastname@example.org
We received the sad news yesterday of the passing of Shaykh Yaqub Ali Murad al-Balushi al-Makki, one of the senior most and elderly hanafi scholars of the sacred city of Mecca.
Shaykh Yaqub was born in the Kerman region of Iran and travelled widely in pursuit of knowledge, acting as a judge in the city of Buraimi in current day Oman before settling in the sacred city of Mecca.
He kept a low profile and shunned fame whilst at the same time serving students of knowledge who came to him. In the 1970s for example he tutored Shaykh Yahya al-Mulla during his student days in Mecca, reading with him works such as the Lubab and Maraqi al-Falah in their entirety.
He was well known for his piety and zuhd, being well known for his performing 2 umrahs every day during the month of Ramadan.
The picture above of Shaykh Yaqub was taken at a mawlid in his home in Mecca on the 12th of Rabi al-Awwal 2015 where the Barzanji mawlid and other qasaid were recited.
May Allah Taala have mercy on him and give his family steadfastness at this time.
There are many courses being run in the UK on various topics related to islamic studies such as tafsir, the fiqh of worship, hadith etc, but very few on the topic of the fiqh of inheritance. When reflected on, this phenomenon is a little odd as the fiqh rules which relate to the division of property upon the death of a person apply to every Muslim and it could be argued in terms of importance and priority perhaps rank higher than many of the courses being delivered throughout the UK.
The importance of these rules and their study is emphasized in the Quran with its detailed exposition of inheritance shares and in the Sunnah such as in the following narrations:
The Prophet, (God bless him and give him peace), said:
“Learn inheritance and teach it for it is half the knowledge and it will be forgotten, and it is the first thing to be ripped from my Ummah” (Ibn Majah 2710).
Likewise the following narration:
He (God bless him and give him peace) also said:
“Learn inheritance and teach it to people for I am a mortal being and knowledge will decrease until two people would differ amongst themselves over inheritance, but wouldn’t find an arbitrator” (al-Nasa’i 6305).
We are therefore pleased to announce a new beginners course on learning the rules of calculating inheritance shares by means of studying forty of the most common inheritance scenarios. We will inshAllah be studying a text authored by the recent great scholar of Mecca, Shaykh Hasan al-Mashat.
Further information and registration can be found on the following link: