Purifying the heart

Purifying the heart !

Assalam Alai kum brothers and sisters. I trust, you are in good health and are counting your blessings everyday.

The link above is an excellent short video based on our existence and how we can remove the corrupt, evil sins from our hearts. It is a beautiful metaphor and I’m sure, you will like it, hence sharing.

The doors of Rehma (mercy/forgiveness) will remain open for us till the moment, we take our last breath, hence don’t assume you will not be forgiven. Allah swt can and will pardon the worse of the sins, provided the niyaah (intention) is sincere and the remorse is true.

A family we knew, had a daughter, who suffered at the hands of a chronic illness for all her tender life. We realized, perhaps,  she was a test from the Almighty. Eventually she passed away leaving her parents with a broken heart.

A few years later, the only other child, an older son, matured and carried forward the responsibilities of his fathers’ business. The father was beside himself. A young, charming, well-behaved, well-disciplined and responsible son, is a dream come true. The parents had him married and the following year, the young bride and groom, performed Hajj.

Although, they are our family friends, we barely kept in touch, over the years. Never the less, I have a deep-rooted respect for this family and upon hearing the beautiful news, I was overwhelmed with joy.

Sadly, it was short-lived.

A couple of years later, the said young boy, committed suicide.

Death of a child, in itself, is the harshest emotional devastation, but loosing your child to suicide can add an unbelievably surreal dimension to this trauma.

And then begins a string of speculations of why he took such a drastic step .. .. perhaps monetary issues, perhaps business decline, perhaps he did not bear children and perhaps a dozen other factors, which we may never know and in so many ways, its none of our business ! But here is whats really important :-

My dear brothers and sisters, suicide is haram. There is no other way to put it mildly.

Please remember, we are placed in this world to face the trials, to endure hardships while keeping our imaan (faith) intact. We CANNOT and MUST NOT give up.

Talk to anyone of your family members, friend, relative, a trusted neighbor, a colleague, the imam in your masjid ~ if nothing else, turn to a psychiatrist.  But DONT give up.  Whatever problems, you face, there is ALWAYS a solution. Sometimes, we have to persistently search for it, and sometimes, patience brings it at our doorstep, never the less, there is ALWAYS a solution. However there is no solution to DEATH.

That is the trauma this elderly parent faces and will continue to endure every single day, for the rest of their lives.

The young bride who probably has a life ahead of her, with a stigma so intense, to carry in our hypocritical society.

What he did ~ is not the issue here becoz he is no more and no one can bring him back.

But what matters is what we learn from this unfortunate tragedy.

Asian parents are highly emotional and less logical parents. They pin too many hopes and aspirations over their offspring. In a way, they almost live their youth, thru their children, which is fine , so long as they don’t start imposing their expectations on them.  If your raising responsible children, remember, when they goof-up(and they will) don’t remind them time and again, about your disappointments (they already realize their mistake) Reminding them will not bring them closer to you. It will only widen the barrier between them and you.

Brothers and sisters, No matter what your fix is, rely on your parents. There will be a temporary period of disappointments and you may curl in the feeling of being a let-down. But trust me, its far better, that they sort your hassle out than sort your coffin out.  There can be no excuse for suicide. Absolutely NONE.

The void a parent feels after loosing a child is unbearably painful but knowing and blaming himself, all the remainder of his life, why his child could not turn to him as a confidante, is far more painful for a parent.

This video demonstrates how wrong decisions, wrong habits and wrong deeds can blacken our hearts and our minds and misguide us in the wrong direction, but ……………………… there is hope.

Astaghfirullah.

Ask Allah swt for forgiveness, refrain yourself from evil practices and reprimand your ways and there is no reason, why the Almighty Allah swt who is Ghafoor and Raheem, would not forgive his slave.

He is waiting for YOU to raise your hands in dua and with trust in your heart, turn to him. He alone will set you free.

so what are you waiting for ?

 

 

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Alcohol ~ Halal or Haram ~ 1

Please check my next post exactly on this subject. I did not want to use the images with this post out of respect for my religion and the beautiful wisdom imparted by the famous Judge.

A man came to Iyas Ibn Mu’awiyah, a Muslim judge famous for his wisdom, and the following conversation took place between them:

Man: What is the Islamic ruling regarding wine?

Judge: It is Haram (Forbidden).

Man: How about water?

Judge: It is Halal (Permissible).

Man: How about dates and grapes?

Judge: They are Halal.

Man: Why is it that all these ingredients are Halal, and yet when you combine them, they become Haram?

The judge looked at the man and said: If I hit you with this handful of dirt, do you think it would hurt you?

Man: It would not.

Judge: How about if I hit you with this handful of straw?

Man: It would not hurt me.

Judge: How about a handful of water?

Man: It surely would not hurt me.

Judge: How about if I mix them, and let them dry to become a brick, and then hit you with it, would it hurt you?

Man: It would hurt me and might even kill me!

Judge: The same reasoning applies to what you asked me!!

Alcohol ~ Halal or Haram ~ 2

This post is actually a part of the  previous post of Wine being Halal or Haram in Islam.
There are scores of authentic Islamic sites which will explain the position of Alcohol in Islam.
The Learned  Dr Zakir Naik himself, has explained elaborately why Alcohol is haram for Muslims.
His explanations are par excellence.
However, for all those of you, who “assume” that you know how to handle your alcohol aka “Keep my liquor down”, please tell me, do any of the following images show you how much respect you gain in this state of intoxication ?
 
The excuses are endless like, “I drink to release stress, drink only socially, drink very responsibly, drink to ease my worries, drink to forget my worries”  ……. I can jot down a dozen excuses why people prefer drinking. But the basic reason, that I believe in, is that they are simply following what Shaitaan is whispering to them. They are slaves of their habits and they are puppets to peer pressure.
 
Any one with an ounce of sense is not going to consume something that is going to cause his body harm (in the long term or short term in large quantity or small quantity ), embarass him becoz he now feels “released” enough to do leave behind his social inhibitions and could possibly cause harm to others around him (socially, physically, mentally)
 
It is purely disgusting to see women, disgracing themselves ~ all in the name of “having some fun”  !!

It all starts with having a good time !

Until it ends in such a shameful state !

There is no dignity left in either of these pictures ~ ONLY DISGRACE.

How easy do you think, it is, for a man to take advantage of her, in the state she is in ??? And then who’s to blame ???

How do you think these women deal with themselves in the mirror the next morning ???
 
They have even coined a term for this term. WASTED !!!! Exactly that and still dont realize that they are “wasting” that precious life.

This poor dude is now vulnerable to anyone who wishes to throw a prank at him. Who is to blame for in this situation ?????

Havent we heard that “like a million times before ?????   One of the many denials !!

ruined the moment ~ ruined your reputation forever !

And they still think that drinking is civil !!! that one CAN drink “responsibly” (yes, ofcourse I have heard THAT a hundred times )

So drunk that he does not have any realization of where he is …

so drunk that he does not realize he is floored with the can !!!

There are scores of pictures, that I can post here, but some of them are just so explicit and disgusting that I cant get myself display them ~ even if it is just to get my point across and show you that there’s a HUGE reason why ALCOHOL IS HARAM in Islam. Do you really need any more reasons ?? I have a dozen pics more if you need more reasons !!

Do you realize how easily one slips from being very conscious to being sober to be tipsy to being totally drunk and do you realize how deadly this condition can be and IS, if your behind the wheel ???

Ask her, and she’ll tell you :-

 Such a beautiful and promising girl’s life is a struggle today. She is not the only one ~ there are hundreds like her whose lives are destroyed forever, but she is an inspiration, none the less.

Thousands of lives are lost thru out the world when some drunk fool decides to drive his car back home !  So many families suffer, so many homes destroyed forever … … . . .

This is a poem by Caroline :-

A poem to get you thinking about the consequences of drink drivingI went to a party,
And remembered what you said.
You told me not to drink, Mum
So I had a sprite instead.

I felt proud of myself,
The way you said I would,
That I didn’t drink and drive,
Though some friends said I should.

I made a healthy choice,
And your advice to me was right,
The party finally ended,
And the kids drove out of sight.

I got into my car,
Sure to get home in one piece,
I never knew what was coming, Mum
Something I expected least.

Now I’m lying on the pavement,
And I hear the policeman say,
The kid that caused this wreck was drunk,
Mum, his voice seems far away.

My own blood’s all around me,
As I try hard not to cry.
I can hear the paramedic say,
This girl is going to die.

I’m sure the guy had no idea,
While he was flying high,
Because he chose to drink and drive,
Now I would have to die.

So why do people do it, Mum
Knowing that it ruins lives?
And now the pain is cutting me,
Like a hundred stabbing knives.

Someone should have taught him,
That it’s wrong to drink and drive.
Maybe if his parents had,
I’d still be alive.

My breath is getting shorter, Mum
I’m getting really scared.
These are my final moments,
And I’m so unprepared.

I wish that you could hold me Mum,
As I lie here and die.
I wish that I could say, ‘I love you, Mum!’
So I love you and good-bye.

DRINK DRIVING KILLS

Caroline

Need I say more ????

Are you a WINNER or a LOSER ?

Personally I dont like the term “Loser “. Its a heavily loaded term full of negativeity. I doubt any one likes to be teased as being a loser. Although I understand from my own kids that its one of the “in” terms to use, when teasing or naming someone you dont particularly like.

Here is something I came across in my inbox, but by no means is this some sorta standard bench mark about losers, however, it does show how one could improve ones attitude and fall on the other side of the court.

  •           The Winner is always part of the answer;
  •            The Loser is always part of the problem.
    • *********
    • ♦ The Winner always has a program;
    • The Loser always has an excuse.
    • *********
    • ♦ The Winner says, “Let me do it for you”;
    • The Loser says, “That is not my job.”
    • *********
    • ♦ The Winner sees an answer for every problem;
    • The Loser sees a problem for every answer.
    • *********
    • ♦ The Winner says, ” It may be difficult but it is possible”;
    • The Loser says, “It may be possible but i t is too difficult.”
    • *********
    • ♦ When a Winner makes a mistake, he says, “I was wrong”;
    • When a Loser makes a mistake, he says, “It wasn’t my fault.”
    • *********
    • ♦ A Winner makes commitments;
    • A Loser makes promises.
    • *********
    • ♦ Winners have dreams;
    • Losers have schemes.
    • *********
    • ♦ Winners say, “I must do something”;
    • Losers say, “Something must be done.”
    • *********
    • ♦ Winners are a part of the team;
    • Losers are apart from the team.
    • *********
    • ♦ Winners see the gain;
    • Losers see the pain.
    • *********
    • ♦ Winners see possibilities;
    • Losers see problems.
    • *********
    • ♦ Winners believe in win-win;
    • Losers believe for them to win someone has to lose.
    • *********
    • ♦ Winners see the potential;
    • Losers see the past.
    • *********
    • ♦ Winners are like a thermostat;
    • Losers are like thermometers.
    • *********
    • ♦ Winners choose what they say;
    • Losers say what they choose.
    • *********
    • ♦ Winners use hard arguments but soft words;
    • Losers use soft arguments but hard words.
    • *********
    • ♦ Winners stand firm on values but compromise on petty things;
    • Losers stand firm on petty things but compromise on values.
    • *********
    • ♦ Winners follow the philosophy of empathy: “Don’t do to others what you would not want them to do to you”;
    • Losers follow the philosophy, “Do it to others before they do it to you .”
    • *********
    • ♦ Winners make it happen;
    • Losers let it happen.
    • *********
    • ♦ Winners plan and prepare to win.
    • The key word is preparation.

SAYING GOODBYE TO MOTHER.

We were dressed, and ready to go out  for the New Years Eve Party. We turned on a night light, turned the answering  machine on, covered our pet parakeet, and put the cat in the  backyard.We phoned the local cab company and  requested a taxi. The taxi arrived and we opened the front door to leave the  house.

As we walked out the door, the cat we  had put out in the yard, scoots back into the house. We didn’t want the cat shut in the house, because she always tries to eat the bird.

My wife goes on out to the taxi, while  I went back inside to get the cat . The cat runs upstairs, with me in hot  pursuit. 

Waiting in the cab, my wife doesn’t want the driver to know  that the house will be empty for the night. So, she explains to the taxi  driver that I will be out soon, ‘He’s just going upstairs to say goodbye to my  mother.’

A few minutes later, I get into the  cab. ‘Sorry I took so long,’ I said, as we drove away. ‘That stupid bitch was  hiding under the bed. I had to poke her ass with a coat hanger to get her to  come out! She tried to take off, so I grabbed her by the neck. Then, I had to  wrap her in a blanket to keep her from scratching me. But it worked! I hauled  her fat ass downstairs and threw her out into the back yard!’

The cab  driver hit a parked car.

Toy Garage Sale

Alittle after Sam came home after his surgery, one of the enormous tasks pending on my to-do list was arranging the boys room and organizing the toys. Now organizing the toys also implys getting rid of that huge mountain of toys piled up for the last 2-3 years. Every 8 months, we get rid of toys that have either broken or the boys have just lost interest in them coz they have grown and moved on to a more challenging / attractive toy. There is a very nice masjid in Bur Dubai, close to the Imperial suites, which accepts toys, clothes, household stuff etc. Thats generally where I would donate the toys in good condition.

However, Bilal, having moved on to more gadgety toys, with sawaab in tow, Eman is left with a huge heap of toys. The little guy likes his tiny army men and forts and ofcourse his war hammer and stuff. So we decided to put up a garage sale.

The boys were so excieted. It was decided that the money collected would go into buying playstation cds or computer game cds. Needless to say, they all put up their socks and were fully charged up. We put up the advertisement in Le Marche, on the spinneys board and on the AR Website.  The boys even placed direction posters around the Al Reem area !!  Our sales was to begin from 11 in the morning. Our first “customer” was a couple with 6 kids who had been waiting since 10:15 !!!!!!!!

Please remember, recyling toys is helping the environment. Why dump or throw toys down the garbage bin, when some child can happily enjoy them for a couple of months or even years more.

Here are some of the pictures :

 

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Ofcourse the sale did turn out good enough to help the boys buy a handful of cds, however, it was my first time experience with garage sales and some of the things that i realized are noted below  :

  • Make sure, you have placed all your toys on the tables, shelves, chairs, cartons,  etc a night before instead of waiting for the 11th hour. It helps~ you feel more organized. An organized display is attractive even if someone is not going to pick something. Its like eye candy !
  • Never place your telephone number on the advert. You’ll be strangely surprised as to how many people call for anything but toys, inspite of writing in large bold letters “ONLY TOYS FOR SALE” !!!!
  • Keep the time short. I made the mistake of keeping it on saturday coz friday was the royal wedding so naturally the turnout would be expectedly low. But where I was wrong was that I kept it from 11:00 to 5:00. The real buyers will be there in the first two hours. So the best time for the sale should be kept between 9:00 to 12:00 or even earlier especially for toys.
  • We kept the prices in the range of max dhs 15 for furniture (and otherwise dhs 1 – 5 ) which was “extreme underpricing” .. why ? Becoz people are people and even at that, they wanted to know if it could be negotiated ?????? HELLLLLLLO !! Even a tiny dinosaur the size of my pinky, costs dhs 25 in ELC and here your getting a full size work table and two chair from Ikea in good condition and you want a discount on 15dhs ???? Solution. Dont price it at dhs 15. Keep it at 20-25 so if they insist, you can always throw it down to 15 !! satisfied ? I manged to sell the egg chair thru dubizzle for dhs 25. Original price being dhs 225 from Ikea ! Then again, the idea was not about “making” money.
  • To reduce the confusion and better traffic for the sale, make sure, you draw or print a map of your house location on the advert. Alot of people are visual based and it helps tremendously.
  • Best to keep some water ready at hand in glasses on the kitchen platform instead of rushing into the kitchen everytime someone asks for some water.

These are just a few of the points I figured from our first sale. We still have piles of toys stacked up in boxes which will be going to the Masjid soon enough for donation. But for now, we are a less loaded and crowded home 🙂

Oh and if there is anyone out there who stays in Dubai and is interested in picking up some/any of these toys, feel free to contact me. They will probably be sitting there in the boxes for atleast two weeks before they are donated to the masjid.

I hope this little article helps you in realizing :

  •  the less cluttered our house is, the more space, there is, to grow ~
  •  the more, we are relaxed ~
  •  the more, it is easy to clean and frankly,
  • there are only so many toys, a child can play with !!

If any of the points have :

  • helped you or
  • helped to make your sale successful or
  •  inspired you to put up a sale,

please do leave a comment. Your comments are always precious to me !

For now, thank you for stopping by and sparing my article, some time.

Naush

Birthday Treat bags and A special boy.

May 11 1999 My oldest son, Bilal was born, May 10 2002, exactly 3 years later, my youngest and third son, Eman was born. Now for those of you with kids placed so closely in birth dates, I dont exactly know how you go around making them feel special !  Well, in a way, I’m saved from all those complications coz we dont celebrate birthdays, well atleast not in the traditional way carried out, all over the world ~ Cake, song, birthday bumbs and whats worse is this new ‘thing” about smashing chunks of cake over the birthday persons face, clothes etc, which is not only disgusting but also being ungrateful to the food and the many bounties of the Almighty  (cake in this case).

When the kids were smaller, I would send some goody bags with them to school for their classmates and take them out for a “MOVIE” which we generally watch only on special occasions or visit their favorite activity parks like kidzania, lou lou al dagongs, magic planet etc. Now that Bilal is just entering his teens, its really difficult coz Eman being 9 still wants to do the same things while Bilal would prefer paint ball park or the bowling alley ! Now thats really a row between the two birthday boys.

Truth be told, its a celebration for me. I turned mom for the first time. All those beautiful and traumatic memories of their pregnancy and delivery come, flooding back on these days.  Its really all too special for me coz these guys are exceptionally understanding, well behaved and just a whole bunch of fun to be around with. Ofcourse, there is that one guy who feels totally out of place coz his birthday falls in July ~ he is not made to feel special by his friends becoz schools out for summer holidays. And you see “FRIENDS” is what its all about !!!

Well, for Eman, these are the goody bags I made for his school.

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For a couple of years, after Eman was born, when they didnt understand the concept of birthdays and such,  I used to take the guys to meet this particularly special little chap who has been in Dubai Hospital from alittle after he was born and probably will stay there for the rest of his life.  His name was Aboudi.

I was having a very complicated pregnancy with Eman. I was in my 6th month when they admitted me much against my wishes,  for severe bleeding. Sawaab was just 9 months old while Bilal was around 3 years. Even now as I pass Dubai Hospital, I watch the 5th floor visitors lounge window and remember how helpless, I used to feel, knowing that both my babies were miles apart in the day and were having such a disturbed time in the evening. Those were such desperate times. Sam would struggle to keep some order in our lives between visiting me in the hospital and managing the babies. And then just as things could’nt have gone worse, Sawaab’s bronchitis devoloped into pneumonia. I remember being on the 5th floor pre-delivery ward while my baby was admitted on the second floor. What a rucous I created when I found out that evening !!! Inspite of my state, nothing in the world could hold me back from being with him. I suppose you call that a “maternal thing” but at that point, I just knew I wanted him just as much as he wanted me. What a huge fight I had with my consulting gyne to release me and release I did get !!!!!!

 It was at that time, when I shifted on the 2nd floor to look after Sawaab that I saw little Aboudi. At that time, he must ave been around 3 years. Cerebral palsy. He was tied with bandages to the cot lest he harm himself. A fair child, drooling away with eyes that I felt were imploring. The nurses communicated with him and somehow he did make some movements to respond. A large part of the day we was sitting by the corner of his cot, watching and sometimes even made to sit of the stroller.  He was a futile cause … he was another one of those, children of a lesser God. My heart ached when I saw him for the first time, I remember, hugging him and later crying away when I saw my own child. No one ever gave away any of this background until one day, one of Aboudi’s favorite attendents, who had become very attached to me told me that he was dropped off at the hospital emergency department by a driver late in the night.  What a heartless mother or did I speak too soon ? No . . . .  She was a heartless woman. To dump a 10 day old baby just becoz he was probably never going to be like all the other kids !!!!!  Nobody claimed him. He was a waif. It breaks my heart to think, that no one in this whole world loves  that little tiny boy with such a huge disease. No one even knew of his existence.  No mother to comfort him, no one to hug him, embrace him with kisses upon kisses, no one to wipe his tears and fears. How cruel. 

Aboudi made me realize that I had no pain at all.  Aboudi gave me that first time feeling of what it feels like, to be in this world ALL ALONE with a huge handicap. The sisters in the ward treated him with affection and dignity and I am so grateful that they did not do it as a part of their job but for humanity.

For the next 3 years, I kept visiting Aboudi with my boys and some toys in hand. Until we moved to the Ranches and life took on a different pace all together. Often I have seen in documentaries and movies about orphans, abused children or such and my heart goes out to each one of them but Aboudi was the child who actually made me come face to face with that situation and I realized I was really no match for his spirit and resilience. I believe he has suffered tremendously but as if it is some solace,  in the hereafter, he will be one of Allah swts blessed ones. Inshallah.

Amongst the many many things that Aboudi made me realize long back was also that birthdays, anniversaries are not for spending lavishly on parties but on fullfilling small and big dreams with those who matter the most to us. Spending in the way of the less fortunate, a hospital visit, a trip to the home of seniors and yes, also creating special memories with near and dear ones. Bilal has has only three friends through out the year and he wishes for them to somehow be a part of “his” day while Eman has an entire school which has been his “BEST” friend. Now isnt “that” a task !!

If you are interested in knowing about Aboudi’s present state, please do comment and I shall reply.