Monday, February 19, 2007

King of Hearts

Hadhrat would always relate to us poetry of great poets in the Arabic, Persian and Urdu language. His extensive knowledge and skill of representing lessons with examples related to one's daily life would, within moments, allow one to understand what message Hadhrat would be trying to get through to us.

Alhumdulillah, Hadhrat, through this method of teaching, has managed to explain complex matters in a matter of moments. His poetry and incidents in themselves prove his wisdom and insight.

On one occasion, during Dars-e-Bukhari, Hadhrat mentioned a couplet of Urdu poetry to explain to us one of our lessons. The poetry is as follows:

ملا کسی کو ہے کیا سوچیے امیری سے

دلوں کے شاہ اکثر غریب ہوتے ہیں

"What has anyone gained from being rich

The kings of heart are predominantly the poor"

From this poetry Hadhrat explained many lessons to us; a few I will mention below as points:

1. Richness is of no use if you become the beggar to desires.

Meaning, when a person has riches in this world but is unable to enjoy it according to the Shari'ah and all that his riches leads to is greed then these riches are of no good because it makes him poorer than that beggar who is satisfied with his limited wealth.

2. The poor should not be looked down upon.

In this world, especially in today's society, the poor are looked down upon because they do not meet the standards of 'society'. They only have enough money for necessities and are devoid from the luxuries of life.

However, there are many glad tidings for the poor and those who are not wealthy; Allah will grant them an early entrance in to paradise as they will have less to answer for. Furthermore, the Prophet صلي الله عليه و سلم chose poverty over being wealthy.

May Allah give us all the understanding to realise the true value of things and to understand that richness is that with that person who appreciates what he has and his actions are for Allah and the Hereafter, for the Hereafter holds the best return and currency. Aameen.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Greed / Expectations (شُحٌّ)

The 'Alim course requires dedication and commitment; it is a course where the student has to realise and understand that the return is not measured in pounds and money but in rewards and blessings from Allah.

It is a course that requires understanding and detachment from the pleasures and desires of the world. A way of life that teaches you the value of things and what holds true value in this world and the hereafter.

This message would be put forward to us in many ways on many occasions. My respected teachers would always state that the purpose of this course was not to gain large sums of money but was to ensure that whatever we acquired was done so correctly and if that was the case Allah would automatically place Barakah (blessings) within such earnings.

Hadhrat would tell us, on several occasions, an incident that took place between a student and his teacher. Before I continue with the incident, I would like all the readers to remember and acknowledge that the methods and efforts and devotion in both teaching and studying today are no comparison to those many years back. In those days, especially in poorer countries, there would be hunger and struggle for teachers and students; limited sleep, occasional food, broken shelter and the hard floor would serve as a bed. During those times this incident took place:

There was once a dedicated teacher that would teach his students their daily lessons. It would be apparent to the students that the teacher was on limited income and due to this they could see the apparent signs of hunger, poverty and lack of sleep.

The students were also aware that the teacher would never accept any help from the students as it would seem as though they were obliged to aid him due to being his students. Therefore, this matter continued for some time until it got to a point where the teacher could no longer teach comfortably due to the pangs of hunger.

There was a bright and clever student from amongst other students who thought of a way in which he would be able to help his teacher. In effort to do so, he prepared a nice meal and walked past his teacher. The sight of the food made the teacher hungry and he desired within his heart to have that food. The student, after a few moments, approached the teacher with the food as a gift for him.

On seeing this the teacher was very pleased and was just about to being when his facial expressions changed. He thanked the student for the gift but explained that he was unable to take the food as it would be regarded as شُح (greed or expectation). He desired for the food and thereafter the taking of that food would be incorrect for him.

The student tried to compromise with his teacher but to no avail the teacher turned down his gift and asked him to leave. The student took leave but was clever to think of another method to complete the task he had begun.

He returned again several minutes later and approached his teacher and said, my respected teacher, when I presented this food to you before you had desire and expectations that it was for you that I had brought this food and thus you asked me to take leave. But once I left there was no desire in your heart neither did you expect me to return with this food. Therefore, now it would be correct for you to accept this gift.

After mentioning this episode our Hadhrat would advice us to never expect anything from anyone in this world, especially because of our position in the society.

He would also tell us to never accept as a gift an item for which we showed desire or need. For example, if on occasion we mentioned in general that, I really have a need for a red fountain pen, and then due to that someone presented us with that pen as a gift then this would also be incorrect to take.

The only expectation one should have is in Allah, for He provides for all and He is the one who knows the needs and the desires of the heart.

May Allah save us all from expectations from anyone but Him and may He grant us all His blessing by providing for us in times of need. Aameen.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Value of Time

One of the many lessons taught to me by Hadhrat is the importance of time. On several occasions he would tell us that the saying "Time is gold" is totally incorrect. This saying gives time a value and furthermore gives a feeling that this value fluctuates regularly or that it can be gained once lost. However, this is not true in the case of time, for its value increases with every second that passes and every moment lost in one's life cannot never be acquired once again.

On occasions, Hadhrat would send us out of the classroom to call someone or send a necessary message to someone. However, we the remaining of the class would see how uneasy Hadhrat would feel on these occasions and would become restless. So much so, that in every few moments he would call out the person he sent so that he could continue his lesson.

At that moment, I had not realised why he would become so restless, especially after having himself sent out someone to do something. But along with time and his company, I have come to realise and understand that Hadhrat had the value of time and realised its true price tag.

May Allah bless him for his words of wisdom and deep insight. May Allah grant him a long and healthy life and allow us to continue to benefit from him and his words of wisdom. Aameen.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Hadhrat Maulana Adam Sahib

My greatest teacher is non other than my respected Shaykh, Shaykh al-Hadith Mawlana Adam ibn Yusuf حفظه الله.

As the principal of Jame'ah Uloomul Qur'an, Maktab and Darul Uloom section, Hadhrat has always been a father like figure watching over the progress of students as well as keeping their well-being in mind.

He has taught me a number of subjects throughout the course which include parts of Zadut Talibeen, Tarjumatul Qur'an, Mishkatul Masabeeh and the complete Sahih al-Bukhari.

His overlooking has always been a source of encouragement and his kind and heartfelt words have always guided as well as spiritually revived me.

It is through his individual attention and company that I have learnt many lessons relating to both my Islamic studies as well as Islam in general.

Short Biography

Shaykh Mawlana Adam is a well known figure throughout the world and is regarded as a grand scholar of the United Kingdom. Amongst his many achievements are the institutes of Jame'ah Uloomul Qur'an, Jame'ah Girls Academy, Khanqah Imam Muhammad Zakariyya رحمه الله. Additionally, he is also the founder of Leicester Islamic Academy (Muslim Girls High School) which was initiated in 1981.

Shaykh Mawalana Adam was born in Manekpore, Western India, in the year 1937 and currently resides in the United Kingdom with his family. In total, he has five children, all of whom are scholars in Islam and dedicated in the Khidmah of Deen. From amongst my teachers are his blessed sons; Maulana Ahmad Ali, Maulana Imran and Mufti Muhammad.

He was admitted at the Islamic University, Jame'ah Islamiyyah in Dabhel, where he completed his initial Islamic education and then completed his memorisation of the Holy Qur'an at an astounding age of nine. He then studied the initial sciences of the Arabic language and the principles of Islamic jurisprudence.

Thereafter, he was enrolled at Darul Uloom, Deoband, the renowned Islamic university of India to study Islamic subjects specialising in the field of Hadith, Tafseer, Fiqh and various interrelated sciences, including the further branches of Shari'ah by various great Shuyookh. At the age of twenty-two, he completed his scholarship and graduated as an 'Alim (Islamic scholar), possessing doctorates in the various principles and teachings of Islam.

Subsequently, he taught many Islamic sciences for five years at the Jame'ah Islamiyyah in Dabhel. Later on, he moved to Malawi (Central Africa) where he resided for seven years and opened an Islamic institution, benefiting many individuals.

He then repositioned to Leicester, England in the November of 1975. He was at first an Imam of Masjid al-Noor and later on by help and grace of the Almighty Allah he purchased the Jame' Masjid and established the Jame'ah Uloomul Qur'an, which began with a single Hifzul Qur'an class consisting of only twelve students and at present accommodates 1300 students.

On the other hand he is one of the leading Shuyukh of Tasawwuf in the present era. He was granted Ijazah (authorization) in the Chistiyya Tariqah (spiritual path). His spiritual chain traces back through a series of authentic teachers all the way to the Prophet Muhammad صلي الله عليه و سلم.

At present, he is still the Imam of Jame Masjid, Leicester (where he has been Imam for 30 years), and teaches Sahih al-Bukhari at Jame'ah Uloomul Qur'an. He also gives Dars (lectures) on Thursday and Sunday evenings and holds a Dhikr Majlis everyday after Fajr Salaah at the Khanqah.

Full biography