The Actual Wealth in Islam


In this month of Ramadhan I would like to tune our mind and thoughts toward the deen of Allah, that is Islam. Even in doing business and getting rich one must observe in doing it in accordance to Islam. Islam does not forbid us from being rich and wealthy. In fact, enjoying what Allah has permitted in this world, is sanctioned in Al-Quran. In surah Al-‘Araf, ayat 32, Allah says:

Which means: Say (O Muhammad): “Who has forbidden the adoration with clothes given by Allah, which He has produced for his slaves, and all kinds of Halal things?” Say: “They are, in the life of this world, for those who believe, (and) exclusively for them (believers) on the Day of Resurrection.” Thus We explain the Ayat (Islamic laws) in detail for people who have knowledge.

That verse clearly states that Allah s.w.t does not forbid us from being wealthy and rich in this world. It is a misconception to view that Islam encourages its followers to be poor in this world with the hope of being rich in the Hereafter.

Muslims must be strong. And to be strong, we must be well off. Being poor will make us dependent on others, and as a result make us vulnerable.

Allah s.w.t gives the richness of this world for His righteous and pious servants. Because only the righteous and pious will not be easily deceived with it. In fact, this whole world is given to them. As mentioned in surah Al-Anbiya’, ayat 105:

Which means: “And indeed We have written in Zabur after (We have already written in) Al-Lauh Al-Mahfûz, that My righteous servants shall inherit the land”.

And so is Akhirat. Allah s.w.t will prepare for His righteous and pious servants luxuries and richness untold. In a hadith narrated by Imam Bukhari and Muslim, the Prophet Muhammad s.a.w said:

Which means: Allah the Most Exalted and High said: I have prepared for my righteous servants rewards that no eye has even seen, no ears has ever heard, and not even once came across to anybody. Exactly as being mentioned in Al-Quran:

No person knows what is kept hidden for them of joy as a reward for what they used to do.

My brothers in Islam,
If we scrutinize those Quranic verses and Hadith above, we can see that the real richness of this world is given only to Allah’s righteous servants. Not for those who are sinful, not those who do not believe in Allah.

But in reality we see that many non-Muslims are rich. And we see that many pious and righteous Muslims are not that well off. So how true are those verses?

Actually, if we observe with an open mind, we can see that only the righteous and pious will get the actual richness of this Earth, because they are not deceived by it.

They do not allow their wealth to overcome them, or to take control of their life. They view their wealth as a tool to achieve their main objective, and that is to gain Allah’s pleasure.

The Islamic history is full with examples of righteous and pious Muslims who knew how to manage their wealth the Islamic way.

For example, the great companions of Rasulullah s.a.w: Abu Bakar AS-Siddiq, Uthman bin Affan, and Abdul Rahman bin ‘Auf. All of them are among the ten companions who were given the good news of Jannah while still alive. And all of them were rich businessmen.

But they were not deceived by their wealth. They saw their wealth as a means to assist Islam, to help the poor, and to do good deeds. These are the examples of righteous and pious Muslims for us to emulate and follow their examples.

But for the unbelievers, those who allow themselves to commit sinful acts, they will not taste the actual wealth of this world, even though physically they are rich. This is because they will never feel enough. They will always feel that they are poor. And hence, they will strive day and night to increase their wealth, disregarding their health, the loved ones and most importantly their relationship with Allah.

In this regard, the Prophet Muhammad s.a.w narrated from Allah, a hadith Qudsi:

(Narrated by Al-Qudhai in Musnad Al-Firdaus)

Which means: “Allah the Most Exalted and High commands to this world: Go and serve those who serves Me. But make those who serve you tired and exhausted”.

What actually is the real wealth? Is it just money?

Actually, the real wealth of this world is not material wealth, dollars and cents because such wealth is not permanent. Such wealth comes and goes easily and sometimes when we are least expecting. Many factors may contribute to the sudden decline of such material wealth. The sudden drop of exchange rates, war and disasters. All these can make one poor immediately.

So what is actual wealth?

Someone is actually wealthy when he is rich with good morals, has lots of thawab, that is good rewards from Allah due to his good deeds, and rich with beneficial knowledge.

These three factors are among those that define actual wealth. They will benefit us in this world and the Hereafter. Good morals for example, will increase our thawab during Judgement Day. Rasulullah s.a.w said:

Which means: “There is nothing that will greatly increase the thawab during Judgement Day, then good morals”.

Knowledge on the other hand serves as our investment after our death. Because when we die, we will not be able to increase our thawab, except three things, as mentioned in the following hadith:

Which means: “When the son of Adam dies, all his deeds will be stopped, unless three things: charity, beneficial knowledge, and pious children who pray for him”.

My brothers in Islam,
We should give our attention to increase our knowledge, especially those concerning Islam. While we are doing so, it is important that we need to build our material strength especially the assets of the Muslim community.

Asset such as the waqaf, our madrasahs and our mosque are valuable assets for the Muslim community. These assets are the symbol for the community of excellence. These assets are the supporting pillars in achieving the actual wealth. We need to develop our assets. We need to fully utilize our asset and to manage it professionally.

Alhamdulillah, One of the most important assets of the Muslim Community is our mosque. Many of our mosques here in Malaysia have the infrastructure that offers us the chance to increase our knowledge. So do not miss this opportunity. Let us maximize our mosques. Let us support our mosques and their activities.

Mosques are built not to be proud off with their design and architecture. But mosques are built to serve us Muslims, to increase our actual wealth, our knowledge and thawab.


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UM Cracks Top Tier in U.S. News & World Report Rankings



“UM Cracks Top Tier in U.S. News & World Report Rankings” is really a great statement. Why? Because I am an ex-Hurricanes myself. I was there in 1984 till 1988. Here is the detail press release. I have few words to say, “I am proud to study at The University of Miami, we are ‘Numero Uno’ forever”

August 20, 2009 — Coral Gables — University of Miami students returning to campus for the new academic year will have another source of pride as ’Canes—their university has cracked the top tier of what is annually one of the most anticipated college ranking lists in the nation.

UM has been ranked No. 50 in U.S. News & World Report’s 2010 edition of “America’s Best Colleges,” which hits newsstands on Monday. It rose from No. 51 last year and has moved up 17 slots in the past eight years, making it one of the fastest-rising institutions in the ranking of national universities.

The editors of U.S. News & World Report have ranked the nation’s top universities and colleges for the past 26 years.

“I am delighted with this recognition,” said UM President Donna E. Shalala, who added that she is proud of the University’s significant accomplishments as measured in student achievement, retention, and graduation rates as well as the caliber of faculty and facilities and the living and learning environment the institution provides.

Video: UM President Donna E. Shalala comments on the top-tier ranking in U.S. News & World Report is at this link and read the full story, http://www.miami.edu/index.php/news/releases/um_cracks_top_50_in_us_news_and_world_report_best_college_rankings/

My old school at Engineering Department now known as ECE (Electrical & Computer Engineering), http://www.ece.miami.edu/

Engineering Department at UM

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Ramadhan is near.


Wow…time do really flies. Ramadhan is just another 5 days from today. Are you prepared?

Asaalamualaikum to everybody here.

This is about the lovely time of the year called RAMADHAN and this is a special time of year obviously because Ramadhan is the month of the Qur’an. It is also a time where we all get the chance to redeem ourselves and do good in this month filled with great blessings, insyaallah, there will be many opportunities to do good in this ramadhan.

Fasting and Zakah (giving alms) are two of the five pillars of Islam and are both obligatory on every muslim individual. With Ramadhan so near, every Muslim must take spiritual and academic preparation for it. It is also common for Muslims to choose Ramadan as the ideal month to fulfill the Zakah (giving alms) obligation as their reward is multiplied by paying their Zakah in the holy month of Ramadhan. If you want to contribute, just click your cursor here (http://www.roslihanip.com/articles/Sumbangan_Al-Hikmah.pdf)

For me, If I get to live through Ramadhan, I am determined to make the most of it. Not a second to be wasted! I have made a timetable, planning my day out so I can do as much Ibadah as possible. I recommend everyone to do the same. This is useful.

To understand the significance of the fasting month of Ramadhan, one must prepare for it not only bodily but also spiritually. During the month of Ramadhan, Muslims must refrain from eating, drinking, smoking, marital relations or getting angry during the daylight hours. In addition, those fasting are supposed to refrain from bad habits – lying, getting angry, using bad language as well as to be more diligent in prayer and give to charities. It is believe that fasting heightens spirituality and develops self-control.

The fast begins in the morning just before sunrise, at Imsak, and is broken at maghrib which falls at sunset. Fasting during the month of Ramadhan is one of the five pillars of Islam and an obligation for devout Muslims.

Those who are expected to fast include: adults (defined as those who have reached the age of puberty) and those who are sane. Those who are not expected to fast include: children, women having their period, travelers, the sick, those with long-term illnesses, pregnant or breastfeeding women and the mentally ill.

The faithful who fast awaken early in the morning to have a meal before subuh. In order to awaken the faithful, the call to prayer is sounded from neighborhood mosques. In addition, groups of young boys walk around neighborhoods beating on drums and other noise makers to awaken the faithful.

The breaking of the fast at sunset is a very social occasion for which special foods are prepared for gatherings with family or friends. Upon hearing the sound of the beduk drum on the television or the call to prayer from the neighborhood mosque at sunset, the faithful know it’s time to break their fast, or buka puasa. This is usually done with a very sweet drink and sweet snacks. Maghrib prayers are made before a full meal is served. Muslims are encouraged to read the entire Qur’an during the bleseed month of Ramadhan. We need to perform the recitation of the entire Qur’an by means of special prayers, called Taraweh, which are held in the mosques every night of the month, during which a whole section of the Qur’an (juz, which is 1/30 of the Qur’an) is recited. Therefore the entire Qur’an would be completed at the end of the month.

The schedule for Imsak and Maghrib is posted in major newspapers and on the television throughout Malaysia. You could not miss it.

While it is expected that people will keep to their normal activities during the fast, needless to say the lack of liquid and food during the day and the unusual sleep and meal schedule soon take their toll. After the first week you may see that sleep and food deprivation cause those fasting to have reduced energy levels as well as finding it more difficult to concentrate on tasks.

Why does Islam oblige its followers to fast during Ramadhan each year?

1. To develop compassion for the poor and needy who feel hungry every day.
2. As a spiritually and physically cleansing experience. Just as in other world religions, fasting is seen as an opportunity to separate yourself from the things of this world and to concentrate on your relationship with God.
3. To become closer to God by contemplating his will in your life.
4. To build self-discipline and to become a better person.

Abu Huraira related that the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said: Whoever fasts during Ramadan with faith and seeking his reward from Allah will have his past sins forgiven. Whoever prays during the nights in Ramadan with faith and seeking his reward from Allah will have his past sins forgiven. And he who passes Lailat al-Qadr in prayer with faith and seeking his reward from Allah will have his past sins forgiven (Bukhari, Muslim).

Abu Huraira related that Rasulullah said: If anyone omits his fast even for one day in Ramadan without a concession or without being ill, then if he were to fast for the rest of his life he could not make up for it (Bukhari).

Abu Huraira related that the Prophet said: Allah the Majestic and Exalted said: “Every deed of man will receive ten to 700 times reward, except Siyam (fasting), for it is for Me and I shall reward it (as I like). There are two occasions of joy for one who fasts: one when he breaks the fast and the other when he will meet his Lord” (Muslim).

Abu Huraira related that Rasulullah said: Many people who fast get nothing from their fast except hunger and thirst, and many people who pray at night get nothing from it except wakefulness (Darimi).

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Preparation to Ramadhan which is coming again


Dear brothers and sisters,

I wanted to personally say to the Ummah Ramadan Al-Mubarak! May Allah SWT grant you a successful Ramadan. May the coming month allow us to reflect not only on the Ummah but on the entire creation and all the wonderful blessings of Allah SWT. May we strive to be patient, understanding, just, and firm in our faith. May we use our faith as a catalyst to project Islam into action and bring about a lasting peace throughout mankind. May we be willing to stand up against wickedness and repel evil with good in all forms. May we remember the example of the Prophet Muhammad SAW and utilize the best of manners when dealing with those who are different from us. May we exemplify the revelation of Allah (swt) in all our daily routines. I ask that Allah SWT grant us the strength to repel the whisperings of the Shaitan (evil).

Amin Ya Rabbal Alamin.

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The month of Ramadan in which was revealed the Quran, a guidance for mankind, and clear proofs of the guidance, and the Criterion (of right and wrong).) (Al-Baqarah 2: 185)

Ramadhan is an event that occurs in the life of the faithful, as individuals and as an Ummah, once a year. It is intended by Allah SWT to help us to recharge our spiritual batteries and thus prepare us for the great mission of realizing His will on earth. Therefore, in order to benefit from Ramadhan, we may do well to prepare for it by opening our hearts and minds to embrace it. A lot of us yearn to prepare for Ramadhan, but we have no idea how to start. Below are a few tips to insyaAllah will help prepare our minds and hearts for this upcoming Month of Mercy.

1. Making the Intention

* Simple to do and has a powerful impact. Maybe you want to prepare for Ramadan, but between school, work, family, and any other activities, you just have no idea how to fit in ‘Preparing for Ramadan’ time. Instead of making ‘preparing for Ramadan’ something separate from your daily activities, MAKE your daily activities a means of preparation for Ramadan.

* For example, perhaps your mom asked you to pick up your brother from school on the day you finally had time to read a few extra pages of Qur’an. Instead of feeling upset and feeling like you have lost a great preparation for Ramadan opportunity, make the intention that you are picking up your brother to please Allah SWT and prepare for Ramadan by obeying your mother, helping your family members, building ties of kinship… and the list continues.

* The point is that preparing for Ramadan does not have to be some magnificent, enormous, extra-special thing that needs to be done at a certain time of the day. Many of your daily actions can be turned into Ramadan preparation actions with a sincere intention, insyaAllah.

2. Do these easy-to-reap-reward actions:

* Asking Allah to forgive your brothers and sisters. “Whoever seeks forgiveness for believing men and believing woman, Allah will write for him a good deed for each believing man and believing woman.” [at-Tabarani]

* It was narrated that Abu Hurairah RA said “The Messenger of Allah SAW said: ‘Whoever says “SubhanAllah wa bi hamdih” (praise and glory be to Allah) 100 times, morning and evening, his sins will be erased even if they are like the foam on the sea.” [Narrated by al-Bukhari, 6042; Muslim 2691]

* If a person says “SubhanAllah” (glory be to Allah) 100 times, a thousand good deeds are recorded for him and a thousand bad deeds are wiped away. [Narrated by Muslim 2073]

* Remember Allah when you go shopping : “Whoever enters a market and says:
‘Laa ilaha illallah wahdahu la shareeka lah, lahul mulku wa lahul hamdu yuhyi wa yumeetu wa huwa hayyun laa yamoot, bi yadihil khair, wa huwa ‘ala kulli shayin qadeer’[there is nothing worthy of worship except Allah, alone without partner, to Him belongs dominion and praise, He causes life and death and He is the Living and does not die. In His Hand is all the good, and He is over all things competent]Allah will write for him/her a million good deeds and erase a million bad deeds and raise him a million levels.” [at-Tirmidhi]

3. Up your worship

* To help condition your heart for this blessed month, intensify your worship before Ramadan begins. Just a small, consistent amount is enough. The Prophet SAW told us:

*“The deeds most loved by Allah are those done regularly, even if they are small.”

* For example, if I always pray 2 rakaats of sunnah after isyak, from this day until Ramadan begins- and even through Ramadan, let me make the intention that I will now pray 2 extra rakaats of sunnah after isyak. And every time I pray these extra 2 rakaats, which are more than what I normally pray, let me remember that I am doing these with the intention of asking Allah to help me be prepared to strive and exert my utmost effort during Ramadan.

4. Make a Dua’ list today

* This is THE MONTH to ask for EVERYTHING, both related to this life and the Next. Let us not wait until the last 10 nights to make special duaas, and then once Eid passes realize that we had completely forgotten about fifty other things we needed to make duaa for. Let us start making our lists now, and add to it as more things come our way. InsyaAllah this should help us remember to make constant duaa in this month where duaa is accepted, and help our hearts pour out to the One Who can make those duaas happen, subhanahu wa ta’ala.

5. Write out your objectives for Ramadan

* Praying all of your fardu prayers? Praying all of your sunnahs? Reading the entire Qur’an? Giving $1 charity a day? Making itikaaf in the masjid? Leaving one serious sin that you’ve been trying to get away from for some time now? Sincerely turning completely back to Allah SWT.

* Write out a list, put them somewhere you will see them, and make duaa for your success in fulfilling these objectives.

6. Make a plan!

* Look at your objectives, and try to make a plan on how to actualize those objectives in this month.

* For example, perhaps you are really struggling to pray your sunnah prayers. In this month, realize the enormity of the ajr (bounty) of praying the sunnah prayers… think that perhaps these sunnahs will be the deeds that will be so heavy on your scale of good deeds when you are intense need of them- on yowm al qiyamah (in the hereafter). Therefore, fight to keep doing them all throughout Ramadan. If you can’t pray your 2 rakaats after dhur’ right away, make sure to do them as soon as you get a chance.

* Thus, your plan might look something like this:

* Objective: Pray all of my fardu prayers.

* Method: Envision myself on the day of judgment seeing the insyaAllah weight of praying my sunnah consistently during this month. Make sure to pray sunnah solah immediately after solah. If I cannot, do it as soon as the opportunity arises… don’t let myself put it off!

* Another example is that of finishing the Qur’an:

* Objective: Finishing the entire Qur’an in this month.

* Method: Read 4 pages of the Qur’an after every solah. 5 prayers X 4 pages = 20 pages. 20 pages= about 1 juz. 1 juz X 30= the entire Qur’an. (Allahu Akhbar!)

——-
So many Muslims or our family and freinds have passed away since last month. So many people have not made it to Ramadan this year. Last year was their very last Ramadan. Will you make it to this Ramadan? Will this be your last Ramadan?

Aim to strive in this Ramadan. With a very small amount of effort, such as just making a small intention, or adding a few extra acts of worship, we pray that Allah will help our hearts soften and honor us with making it easy to turn to Him and open up to Him.

May Allah make us of the successful in Ramadan, and make it easy for us to turn to Him completely and perpetually.

Amin Ya Rabbal Alamin.

For more tips, read it here, insyaAllah, http://www.ezsoftech.com/ramadan/ramadan_tips.asp







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The Virtue in Giving the Alms (Zakat)


Our Prophet SAW was the one who expended the most from what Allah SWT gave to him. If anyone wanted anything from the Messenger SAW, he would certainly give, whether it was much or whether it was little; he always gave whatever he could. The pleasure he took from giving was more than the happiness of the person who received. Our Prophet SAW specified four types of possessions from which to give alms (zakat):

1) Agricultural products and fruits,

2) Animals (camel, cattle),

3) Gold and silver,

4) All sorts of commercial goods.

“You who believe! Give away some of what We have provided for you before a Day arrives on which there is no trading, no close friendship and no intercession…” (Surat Al-Baqarah : 254)

Cooperation had a great place in our Prophet’s SAW life. He informs us that the best of all aids given are the ones given in secret. Our Prophet SAW says:

“Seven are (the persons) whom Allah would give protection with His Shade on the Day when there would be no shade but that of Him (i. e. on the Day of Judgment, and they are): … a person who gives charity and conceals it (to such an extent) that the right hand does not know what the left has given: and a person who remembered Allah in privacy and his eyes shed tears.” (Sahih Muslim, Book 005, Number 2248)

Satan inspires fear for future in people so as to hinder them from giving away from that which Allah SWT has blessed them with. This way, he drifts them into stinginess. Our Prophet SWT says that this is a great danger for believers.

 “Spend and do not calculate, (for) Allah would calculate in your case; and do not hoard, otherwise Allah would be withholding from you.” (Sahih Muslim, Book 005, Number 2244)

 “He who gives time to one who is financially hard up (in the payment of debt) or writes off his debt, Allah will provide him His shadow.” (Sahih Muslim, Book 042, Number 7149)

“If any owner of gold or silver does not pay what is due on him, when the Day of Resurrection would come, plates of fire would be beaten out for him; these would then be heated in the fire of Hell and his sides, his forehead and his back would be cauterized with them. Whenever these cool down, (the process is) repeated during a day the extent of which would be fifty thousand years, until judgment is pronounced among servants.” (Sahih Muslim, Book 005, Number 2161)

Giving to charity is one of the five “pillars” of Islam. Muslims who have wealth remaining over the year, after paying for their own basic needs, must pay a certain percentage to help others. This almsgiving is called Zakat, from an Arabic word which means both “to purify” and “to grow.” Muslim believe that giving to others purifies their own wealth, increases its value, and causes one to recognize that everything we have is a trust from God. Paying Zakat is required of every adult Muslim man or woman who possesses wealth of a certain minimum amount.

In addition to the required alms, Muslims are encouraged to give in charity at all times according to their means. Additional, voluntary charity is called sadaqah, from an Arabic word meaning “truth” and “honesty.” Sadaqah may be given at any time and in any amount. 

How Much to Pay in Zakat: Zakat is only required of those who have wealth beyond a certain amount to meet their basic needs (called nisab in Arabic). The amount of money paid in Zakat depends on the amount and type of wealth one possesses, but is usually considered to be a minimum of 2.5% of a person’s “extra” wealth. The specific calculations of Zakat are rather detailed and dependent on individual circumstances, so zakat calculators have been developed to assist with the process.

Who May Receive Zakat: The Qur’an specifies eight categories of people to whom Zakat may be donated (in verse 9:60):

  • Poor people — who have few belongings
  • Destitute people — who have absolutely nothing
  • Zakat collectors — for their work in collecting and distributing the zakat
  • Muslim converts — who may be estranged from their families and in need of help
  • Slaves — to free them from slavery in times/places where slavery has existed
  • Debtors — to help free them from insurmountable debts
  • Those working in the path of Allah — soldiers fighting a just war to defend the Muslim community
  • Wayfarers — who are stranded during their travels

When to Pay Zakat: While Zakat can be paid anytime during the Islamic lunar year, many people prefer to pay it during Ramadan or your could contribute now to Al-Hikmah Surau/Madrasah for student who studied Al-Quran and Alim.

The assessor of alms should try to give his Zakat to an eligible person, but if he makes a mistake and gives it to an ineligible person it is accepted. In a hadith related by Abu Hurairah, he said the Messenger SAW said:

“A man expressed his intention to give charity, so he came with his charity and placed it in the hand of an adulteress. In the morning the people were talking and saying charity was given to an adulteress last night. The donor said: O Allah, to thee be the Praise – charity to an adulteress! He then again expressed his intention to give charity, so he went out with it and placed it in the hand of a rich person. In the morning the people were talking and saying charity was given to a rich person. The donor said, O Allah to You be the praise – charity to a rich man! He then expressed his intention to give charity, so he went out with his charity and placed it in the hand of a thief. In the morning the people were talking and saying charity to the thief. So the man said, O Allah to You be the praise (what a misfortune that charity has been given) to the adulteress, the rich and the thief! Then someone came to him and told him your charity has been accepted. As for the adulteress the charity might become the means whereby she might restrain from fornication. The rich man might perhaps learn a lesson and spend from what Allah has given him, and the thief might thereby restrain from committing theft. (Muslim/ Bukhari).

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