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A Brief Commentary on La Hawla wa La Quwwata illa Billah

A Brief Commentary on La Hawla wa La Quwwata illa Billah By Abu Unays   لَا حَوْلَ وَلَا قُوَّةَ إِلَّا بِاللَّهِ   Lā hawla wa lā quwwata illā billāh is abbreviated as hawqalah. Abbreviations are produced by taking a few letters from the original phrase to form a single word. Other abbreviations of Islāmic phrases include basmalah (bismillāhir-Rahmānir-Rahīm) and hamdalah (alhamdullillāhi Rabbil-‘ālamīn).   The Arabic word hawl is commonly translated as power. However, the Arabic root for hawl denotes meanings of movement and change. The word quwwah, on the other hand, is more in line with power as it denotes meanings of strength.  …

Imagined Communities

Imagined Communities By Abu Unays بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم   The Prophet of Allāh sallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam said whilst interlacing his fingers, “Verily, the believer to another believer is like a structure, parts of it reinforce the other.” [Bukhārī]   Points of benefit    I. Imagery is ample in religious scripture. Vivid and descriptive language appeal to the human senses, deepening our understanding of a text. It serves to create a mental image/experience of ideas.    II. Imagined pictures of the world’s people influence how we group and relate to them. Our identities are partly constituted in terms of perceiving ourselves as belonging to…

The Virtue of Consistency

The Virtue of Consistency By Abu Unays بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم   The Prophet of Allāh sallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam was asked about the most beloved good deed to Allāh, to which he replied:    أَدْوَمُهُ وَإِنْ قَلَّ “That which is most regular and constant even if it is little in amount.” [Muslim]   Points of benefit   I. Consistency adds value. It elevates a deed even if it is small. The scholars would say, “A consistent deed—even if it is small—is better than a huge deed that is inconsistent.”   II. Consistency perpetuates reward. If an actor is prevented from completing a…

O Allah! You are As-Salam

O Allah! You are As-Salam... By Abu Unays بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم   The Prophet of Allāh sallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam would say at the end of every prayer:   اللَّهُمَّ أَنْتَ السَّلَامُ، وَمِنْكَ السَّلَامُ، تَبَارَكْتَ يَا ذَا الْجَلَالِ وَالْإِكْرَامِ “O Allāh! You are As-Salām and from you is as-salām. Most Blessed are You, O Owner of Majesty and Honour.” [Ibn Mājah]   O Allāh! You are As-Salām As-Salām is one of Allāh’s Names. The word salām linguistically comes from a root which means freedom or safety from any number of things. Accordingly, As-Salām as a Name of Allāh denotes One who…

Four words to outweigh your words

Four words to outweigh your words​ By Abu Unays بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم     Muslim reports that on the authority of Juwayriyah that the Prophet sallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam left her (house) one morning after having prayed Fajr whilst she was (sitting) in her place of prayer, then he returned after the forenoon had come and she was still sitting there. He asked, “Are you still in the same state as when I left you?” She replied, “Yes.” The Prophet said, “After I left you, I said four words three times, which if they were weighed against what you have…

Purpose and Goals of 'Ibadah – Part 2

Purpose and Goals of Ibadah – Part 2 by Shaykh Abu Ubaid   بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم   Goals of 'ibādah in the dunyā (Earthly) life   We mentioned in a previous post that 'purpose' was coined for the 'result or outcome' of the quantity and quality of the 'reward(s).' Purpose is associated with the ākhirah (Hereafter), beginning from the moment of death.   Goals, on the other hand, are for this life. Subsequently, any khayr (good) intention for this life is labelled a 'goal.' Ultimately, for the true mu'min, there is another objective—the Ākhirah Intention. Thus, the 'goal' serves as means to…