In the name of Allah the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

Welcome to pearls to reach the stars. Pearls and stars are metaphors. The pearls are very precious, highly valued things and stars indicate a category of excellence. Thus,the aims of Pearls to Reach the Stars are to stimulate our inner feelings, our minds and arouse our spirit in order that our speech, actions and thoughts are reflected positively, optimistically and virtuously as true muslims who are close to God. The collection of some pearls of wisdom from various authentic and reliable sources to reach the stars like motivational quotes, inspirational phrases , poems, aesthetic expressions, for inner stimulation to become a worthy person. May God forgive us and place us in the group of people who have good intentions, who love and help each other for the sake of Him and may Allah place us in the group of As-habul Yamin on the Day of Judgment in the hereafter. Ameen.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

And a youth said, "Speak to us of Friendship."



Friendship  by Khalil Gibran
And a youth said, "Speak to us of Friendship." 

Your friend is your needs answered. 

He is your field which you sow with love and reap with thanksgiving. 

And he is your board and your fireside. 

For you come to him with your hunger, and you seek him for peace. 

When your friend speaks his mind you fear not the "nay" in your own mind, nor do you withhold the "ay." 

And when he is silent your heart ceases not to listen to his heart; 

For without words, in friendship, all thoughts, all desires, all expectations are born and shared, with joy that is unclaimed. 

When you part from your friend, you grieve not; 

For that which you love most in him may be clearer in his absence, as the mountain to the climber is clearer from the plain. 

And let there be no purpose in friendship save the deepening of the spirit. 

For love that seeks aught but the disclosure of its own mystery is not love but a net cast forth: and only the unprofitable is caught. 

And let your best be for your friend. 

If he must know the ebb of your tide, let him know its flood also. 

For what is your friend that you should seek him with hours to kill? 

Seek him always with hours to live. 

For it is his to fill your need, but not your emptiness. 

And in the sweetness of friendship let there be laughter, and sharing of pleasures. 

For in the dew of little things the heart finds its morning and is refreshed

Friday, November 19, 2010

Jihad Al-Nafs [Fighting The Ego]


Translated from the following parts of 
'Ihya' `Ulum al-Din' [The Revival of the Religious Sciences] by imam al ghazali
a)Definitions at the beginning of the book "Kitab sharh `aja'ib al-qalb"
 [Book of the Explanation of the Mysteries of the Heart]
b)Section entitled: "The Soldiers of the Heart" in the same book
c)Section entitled: "Shaytan's domination over the heart through whispering [al-waswas]" in the same book
d)Section entitled: "Proofs..." from the book "Kitab riadat al-nafs wa tahdhib al-akhlaq wa mu`alajat amrad al-qalb" [Book of the training of the ego and the disciplining of manners and the healing of the heart's diseases]

Golden Principles of Raising Children



Imam Ghazali (May God Shower His Mercy Upon Him)'s Arabic Book on the Subject from His Three-Volumes Collection of Short Books

"Majmu'a Rasail Imam Ghazali"

Translated into English By Irfan Hasan


CHILDREN'S INITIAL EDUCATION, TRAINING, AND ATTAINMENT OF MORAL VALUES INTRODUCTION OF THE BOOK

Adopting an effective method for training children is extremely important and necessary. It is because a child is Allah's trust in parents' hands and the child's heart is like a nice, clean, and simple mirror which, although, is devoid of any types of impressions or shapes, is capable of accepting the influence of all types of impressions and influences and it can be inclined towards any thing you like. Therefore, if good habits are inculcated in the child and if he/she is instructed in knowledge, then the child after gaining such excellent nourishment (upbringing), achieves the real success of this life and of the life hereafter.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

O Allah!

[From Imam Ghazali's My Dear Beloved Son]
“O my Allah! I desire from You the completion (abundance/perfection) of Your blessings and from purity (inner and outer) I desire its permanence and from Your mercy [I desire] its inclusion [in all matters] and from health [I desire] its attainment and from sustenance [I desire] its increase and from life [I desire] its happiness and from life [I desire] its real success and from good qualities [I desire] their completion and from your rewards [I desire] the reward which is the most common and from your plenitude [I desire] the plenitude which is the sweetest and from your favors [I desire] the favor which is the most plentiful and from deeds [I desire] the deed which is the best and from knowledge [I desire] the knowledge which is the most beneficial and from the sustenance [I desire] the sustenance which is the most plentiful.

The Basis of Inner Peace or Peace of Heart by Sayyidi Abd al-Qadir al-Jilani


Taken from Qur'anic Psychiatry
"Know that in the thikr of Allah (also following the guidance in the Holy Qur'an) lies the peace of quloob (heart)."
In this ayaat the Creator of the physical and non-physical bodies, Allah Ta'ala, has declared the very basis of the immutable law governing a person's health.
Therefore, the very structure of spiritual health rests on "peace of heart." If this does not exist many psychological disorders, such as nervousness leading to neurosis, and other similar disorders will develop.

The heart filled with love for Allah


“Truly in the heart there is a void that cannot be removed except with the company of Allah.  And in it there is a sadness that cannot be removed except with the happiness of knowing Allah and being true to Him.  And in it there is an emptiness that can not be filled except with love for Him and by turning to Him andalways remembering Him.  And if a person were given all of the world and what is in it, it would not fill this emptiness.”
Imam Ibn ul Qayyim

Attar's Seven Valleys of Love


The Valley of the Quest
When you enter the first valley, the Valley of the Quest, a hundred difficulties will assail you; you will undergo a hundred trials. There, the Parrot of heaven is no more than a fly. You will have to spend several years there, you will have to make great efforts, and to change your state. You will have to give up all that has seemed precious to you and regard as nothing all that you possess. When you are sure that you possess nothing, you still will have to detach yourself from all that exists. Your heart will then be saved from perdition and you will see the pure light of Divine Majesty and your real wishes will be multiplied to infinity.One who enters here will be filled with such longing that he will give himself up completely to the quest symbolized by this valley. He will ask of his cup-bearer a draught of wine, and he has drunk it nothing will matter except the pursuit of his true aim. Then he will no longer fear the dragons, the guardians of the door, which seek to devour him. When the door is opened and he enters, then dogma, belief and unbelief--all cease to exist.

The Valley of Love
 The next valley is the Valley of Love. To enter it one must be a flaming fire--what shall I say? A man must himself be fire. The face of the lover must be enflamed, burning and impetuous as fire. True love knows no after-thoughts; with love, good and evil cease to exist.

Good Manners - Imam al-Haddad



Know disciple, that the beginning of the path is patience, and its end is thankfulness. 
Its beginning is difficulty, and its end is bliss. Its beginning is toil and weariness, 
and its end is opening, unveiling and arrival at the ultimate goal 
which is gnosis of God, arrival to Him, being comforted by Him, 
and standing in His noble presence with His angels standing before Him.
The one who makes gracious patience 
the foundation of all his affairs turns to every goodness, 
reaches everything that he hopes for, and wins all that he seeks.


Taqwaa: The key to Learning


Sheikh Abu Anas Hamad Ibn Ibrahim al-'Uthmaan

Short reminder to those seeking knowledge concerning the aspect of taqwaa, since this is a useful tool long forgotten by many of those who enter themselves into the various sciences of this noble, pure Religion.
Whosoever loves that Allaah should open-up his heart for him and grant light to him, then let him abandon speech about that which does not concern him, and abandon sins and turn away from disobedience.
Allaah – the Most Perfect, Most High – said:
"O you who believe! Have taqwaa (fear) of Allaah, and believe in His Messenger; and He will bestow upon you a double portion of His Mercy, and He will provide you with a light by which you will walk." [2]

Seeking Knowledge



by a Muslim sister
Allah (SWT) says in the Holy Qur'an in Surah Al Baqarah, "He granted wisdom (Hikmah) to whom He pleased; and to whom wisdom (Hikmah) is granted received indeed a benefit overflowing; but none will grasp the Message but men of understanding" (2:269). This ayah, as well as others in the Holy Qur'an, illustrates to us the importance of knowing and understanding our beautiful religion. Without knowledge of our Deen we run the risk of falling into misguidance and innovation, and that misguidance could ultimately lead us to the Hellfire. Allah's Messenger (SAW) used to say in every Friday khutba, "The best discourse is the Book of Allah and the best guidance is the guidance of Muhammad, the Messenger of Allah, and the worst matter is that of innovation and every innovation is misleading." 

The Keys to Humility


by A Muslim Brother

Many of us, Islamic blog writers, students of knowledge, activists, khatibs, or any of the groups of people in between who’s Islamic activities are public affairs, find ourselves in a difficult situation. We know the importance of humility and know that it is constantly under attack.

From khutbah compliments, to blog comments, to proving a young brother or sister’s incorrect point of view to be incorrect and helping them understand a point of fiqh or arabic or ‘Aqidah - true humility is the part of our castles.. We take the steps towards being humble, and then…recognize to ourselves that we have taken these steps, thus causing us to become proud of ourselves. It is a vicious cycle. More knowledge, more wisdom…

The Characteristics of People who have Taqwa, as Mentioned in the Qur’an


In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.
(Friday speech delivered by Imam Mohamed Baianonie at the Islamic Center of Raleigh, NC on September 4, 1998)
Last Friday, we talked about taqwa, its definition, its importance in the life of people, and its fruits.
Today, we talk about the qualities and characteristics of people, who have taqwa. These qualities are mentioned in many verses of the Qur'an, so that we may know them and work to acquire them. And so that we will be among the people who have taqwa. The Characteristics are as follows:

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

The Ideal Muslim Woman and Her Own Self


(An Excerpt from the Book “The Ideal Muslimah: The True Islâmic Personality of the Muslim Woman as Defined in the Qur’ân and Sunnah”)  
By  Dr. Muhammad ‘Ali Al-Hashimi
Translated by Nasiruddin Al-Khattab and Revised by Ibrahim M. Kunna and Abu  Aya Sulaiman Abdus-Sabur Copyright and published by the International Islâmic Publishing House (IIPH), Riyadh, Saudi Arabia in 1999.
Introduction
Islam encourages the Muslims to stand out among people, readily distinguishable by their dress, appearance and behavior, so that they will be a good example, worthy of the great message that they bring to humanity. According to the hadith narrated by the great Sahabi Ibn al-Hanzaliyyah, the Prophet (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) told his Companions, when they were traveling to meet some brothers in faith:

Characteristics Of A Pious Muslimah(In The Light Of Quran & Hadith)


Quranic verses
Allah has said that those women who are Muslims, who put their îmân in order, who are obedient, who give in charity, who fast, who protect their honour and chastity, who remember Allah abundantly - Allah has set aside forgiveness and a great reward for them.

Allah has said that pious women have the following qualities: they are obedient, and they protect their honour even if the husband is not at home. Allah has further stated that such women are good women, who are steadfast on the Sharî‘ah, whose beliefs are in order, who are obedient, if they commit any act that is contrary to the Sharî‘ah they repent immediately, who occupy themselves in the ‘ibâdah of Allah, and who fast.

The conditions of hijaab:


Shaykh al-Albaani (may Allaah have mercy on him) said:
The conditions of hijaab:
Firstly:
(It should cover all the body apart from whatever has been exempted).

Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“O Prophet! Tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to draw their cloaks (veils) all over their bodies (i.e. screen themselves completely except the eyes or one eye to see the way). That will be better, that they should be known (as free respectable women) so as not to be annoyed. And Allaah is Ever Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.”
This aayah clearly states that it is obligatory to cover all of a woman’s beauty and adornments and not to display any part of that before non-mahram men (“strangers”) except for whatever appears unintentionally, in which case there will be no sin on them if they hasten to cover it up.
Al-Haafiz ibn Katheer said in his Tafseer:

Love of Allah


by Imâm Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah
The love of the Beloved
must be unconditionally returned.
If you claim love
yet oppose the Beloved,
then your love is but a pretence.
You love the enemies of your Beloved
and still seek love in return.

You fight the beloved of your Beloved.

Is this Love or the following of shaytaan?

True devotion is nothing
but total submission
of body and soul
to One Love.

We have seen humans claim to submit,
yet their loyalties are many.

They put their trust here, and their hope there,
and their love is without consequence.

Excerpted from An-Nooniyyah
Quoted in "Al-Walaa wal-Baraa" of Muhammad Saeed al-Qahtani

Traps of Iblees


by Ibn ul-Qayyim al-Jawziyyah rahimahullaah
from At-Tafseer Al-Qayyim of Shaikh Ibn Al-Qayyim [Al-Hijra magazine]
It is not possible to encompass one of Iblees' evils, let alone all of them. Since Iblees' evil is of six types, Iblees remains behind the son of Adam until he gets him to do one or more of these six evils.
THE FIRST EVIL IS THE EVIL OF KUFR AND SHIRK and enmity to Allâh and His Messenger sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam. If he gains this from the son of Adam, his moaning is eased, and he rests from his ordeal with this man. Further, this is the first thing Iblees wants from al-'Abd (the worshipper). If Iblees gains this, he makes this person part of his army, one of his soldiers, and he appoints him as a deputy or agent against other human beings. Then, this person becomes one of the deputies or callers of Iblees.

The Great Virtue Of Lowering The Gaze




Taken from 'al-Muntaqaa min Ighaathatul Lufhaan fee Masaayid ash-Shaytaan'Imaam ibn ul-Qayyim al-Jawaziyyah rahimaahullah
(pp.'s 102-105) of ibn ul-Qayyim, summarised by Alee Hasan
Allaah, the Exalted said,
"Say to the believing men that they should lower their gaze and guard their private parts; that will make for greater purity for them. Indeed Allaah is well acquainted with all that they do." [an-Nur (24):30]
So Allaah made purification and spiritual growth to be the outcome of lowering the gaze and guarding the private parts. It is for this reason that lowrering ones gaze from (seeing) the prohibited things necessarily leads to three benefits that carry tremendous value and are of great significance.
The First: experiencing the delight and sweetness of faith.
This delight and sweetness is far greater and more desirable that which might have been attained from the object that one lowered his gaze from for the sake of Allaah. Indeed, "whosoever leaves something for the sake of Allaah then Allaah, the Mighty and Magnificent, will replace it with something better than it." [1]

Sabr ( Patience )



By Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah.
An abridgement of his original work entitled, “Uddat as-Sâbireen wa Dhâkirat by TaHa Publications

The Definition of Patience


Sabr is an Arabic word which comes from a root meaning to detain, refrain and stop. There is an expression in Arabic, "so-and-so was killed sabran," which means that he was captured and detained until he died. In the spiritual sense, patience means to stop ourselves from despairing and panicking, to stop our tongues from complaining, and to stop our hands from striking our faces and tearing our clothes at times of grief and stress.

What scholars have said about patience

Ways of Strengthening Patience


by Imâm Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah
Patience and Gratitude. By Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah. An abridgement of his original work entitled, “Uddat as-Sâbireen wa Dhâkirat by TaHa Publications

The Patience of noble people and the patience of ignoble people

Every person has to exercise patience in order to face difficulties, whether he does so willingly or unwillingly. The noble person exercises patience willingly, because he realizes the benefits of patience, and he knows that he will be rewarded for his patience and will be criticized if he panics. He is aware that if he does not have patience, panicking and impatience will not help him to regain missed opportunities, and will not take away things he dislikes. Whatever is decreed and is qada’ wa qadr cannot be prevented from happening, and whatever is decreed not to happen cannot be made to happen. So an attitude of impatience and panic actually causes harm.

Polishing the Hearts



Imaam ibn al-Qayyim al-Jawziyyah (d.751 H), rahimahullaah 1
From al-Istiqaamah magazine Shawwal 1418H/ February 1998
Allaah - the Most High - said:

"O you who believe! Remember Allaah and remember Him a lot." [Soorah al-Ahzaab 33:4I].
"Those men and women who remember Allaah a lot." [Soorah al-Ahzaab 33:35].
"So when you have finished the rights of your Pilgrimage, then remember Allaah as you remember your fore-father, or with more intense remembrance." [Soorah al-Baqarah 2:200].
These verses contain a command to remember Allaah intensely and abundantly, since the worshipper is in dire need of [remembering Allaah] and cannot do without it even for a twinkling of an eye. This is because every moment that a person does not spend in the dhikr (remembrance) of Allaah will not be of any benefit to him. Rather, the harm entailed in being neglectful of the dhikr of Allaah is far greater than any benefits that can be gained. One of the 'aarifeen (those who are knowledgeable about Allaah) said:"If a person were to spend such and such number of years engaged [in the dhikr of Allaah], then he turns away from it for just a moment, what he will lose is far greater than whatever he has already gained."
Al-Bayhaqee relates from 'Aaishah radiallaahu 'anhaa that the Prophet sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam said: "There is no time in which the son of Aadam does not remember AIIaah in it, except that it will be a source of regret for him on the Day of Judgement" 2

Ibn ul-Qayyim's beautiful description of Paradise


from the amazing and beautiful book Haadi al-Arwaah ilaa Bilaad il-Afraah by Ibn al-Qayyim, pg. 193
Ibn al-Qayyim said, in regards to the description of the Paradise and the delights that it contains:

"And if you ask about its ground and its soil, then it is of musk and saffron.

And if you ask about its roof, then it is the Throne of the Most Merciful.

And if you ask about its rocks, then they are pearls and jewels.

The real test of faith.

Talha Ibn Sabeeh says: al-Hasan said: A believer believes in what God has said. He is the best of men in his deeds, but he fears God most, so that if he spends the size of a mountain of money, he would not be sure of his reward until he sees this with his own eyes. The more righteous and charitable the believer is, the more afraid of God he becomes. While the hypocirte says: Men are too many, I shall be forgiven. There is no harm on me. Thus he acts badly, but wishes many things from God.
Faith is not mere wishes but what you have in your heart which is confirmed by your deeds. This means that deeds are the real test of faith.

Remaining Silent



" If Allah wanted to punish a people, 
He would make them indulge in arguing and give up action. 
Many a times I have regretted speaking my son, 
but I have never regretted remaining silent."
-Luqman Hakeem

In a dome of green like his on earth


I envy the sand that met his feet
I’m jealous of honey he tasted sweet
Of birds that hovered above his head
Of spiders who spun their sacred web
To save him from his enemies
I envy clouds formed from the seas
That gave him cover from the heat

Friday, November 12, 2010

Strangeness and the Strangers



Imam Ibn ul Qayyim al Jawziyyah

Adoptted by Ammar ibn Abdullah al-Hindi
Based on a booklet by ibn Qayyim entitled al-Ghurbathu wa al-Ghuraba
Some modifications and additions have been made, © 1994 Basheer Publications



"Islam began as something strange, and it shall return to being something strange, so give glad tidings to the strangers."
The Meaning of "Strangeness"
Many times in many situations the people that follow the religion of Allah feel a sense of not belonging, of being out of place, of not fitting in, and, in other words, of being strange. This feeling could occur in a gathering of non-Muslims, but, unfortunately, this feeling sometimes also occurs when one is with his fellow Muslims. A person sees his brothers and sisters doing acts that are contrary to Islam, or taking part in innovations that sometimes even border on kufr (apostasy), yet he feels that he does not have enough power or courage to stop them in these acts. Some brothers and sisters, especially if they do not have enough taqwa or Islamic knowledge, sometimes buckle under the pressure of their peers and join in these acts, knowing that this is not what Allah wants them to do. However, feeling helpless, since it seems that they are alone in their ideas and without any support to help them do what is right, they succumb to such pressures.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Trials and Tribulations : Wisdom and Benefits


1.      When a trial befalls you, realize the greatness of Allah
2.      When a trial befalls you, actualize the sincerity for Allah -There is no way to remove hardships except to turn to Allah “If Allah touch thee with affliction, none can remove it but He; if He touch thee with happiness, He hath power over all things.” (Al-Quran, 6:17)
3.      When a trial befalls you, return back to Allah -“When some trouble touches man he cries unto his Lord, turning to Him in repentance” (Al-Quran, 39:8)

Characteristics of a Successful Muslim - Yahya ibn Mu`adh al-Razi

In the Name of Allah, the Benevolent, the Merciful
Yahya ibn Mu`adh al-Razi (Allah have mercy upon him), one of the great imams of the spiritual path from the early Muslims (salaf), said:

“Glad tidings be to a servant who has:
1. Made their occupation worship (`ibada);
2. Neediness (faqr) their longing;
3. Spiritual seclusion (`uzla) their desire;
4. The Hereafter their concern;
5. Seeking a living their means [f: rather than an end in itself];
6. Death their reflection (fikr);
7. Their intention busy with renunciation (zuhd);
8. Killed through abasement (dhull) their self-consequence (`izz);
9. Making their Lord their sole need;
10. Remembering their errors in their solitude (khalwa);
11. Sending forth in ecstasy their contemplation;
12. Complaining only to Allah regarding their strangeness (ghurba);
13. And asking through repentance for Allah’s Mercy.

Glad tidings be to one for whom these are their traits; whose regret is over their sins; ever-yearning in need by night and day; weeping before Allah in the depths of the night; calling upon the All-Merciful; seeking the Gardens of Paradise; and fearing the Fires of Hell.” [Related by Abu Nu`aym, Hilyat al-Awliya, 10.58]


Thursday, August 12, 2010

So wait steadfastly.....

Al-Ghazali said,
"If you see Allah, Mighty and Magnificent, holding back this world from you,
frequently trying you with adversity and tribulation,
know that you hold a great status with Him.
Know that He is dealing with you
as He does with His Awliya' and chosen elite,
and is watching over you,
have you not heard His saying,
"So wait steadfastly for the judgment of your Lord
- you are certainly before Our eyes."[At-Tur 52:48]

Saturday, July 24, 2010

On Joy and Sorrow

Your joy is your sorrow unmasked.
And the selfsame well from which your laughter rises was oftentimes filled with your tears.
And how else can it be?
The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.
Is not the cup that holds your wine the very cup that was burned in the potter’s oven?
And is not the lute that soothes your spirit, the very wood that was hollowed with knives?
When you are joyous, look deep into your heart and you shall find it is only that which has given you sorrow that is giving you joy.
When you are sorrowful look again in your heart, and you shall see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight.

Some of you say, “Joy is greater than sorrow,” and others say, “Nay, sorrow is the greater.”
But I say unto you, they are inseparable.
Together they come, and when one sits, alone with you at your board, remember that the other is asleep upon your bed.

Verily you are suspended like scales between your sorrow and your joy.
Only when you are empty are you at standstill and balanced.
When the treasure-keeper lifts you to weigh his gold and his silver, needs must your joy or your sorrow rise or fall.

by Kahlil Gibran

The Promise


When pain arrives side by side with your love
I promise not to flee
When you ask me for my life
I promise not to fight

I am holding a cup in my hand
By God if you do not come
Till the end of time
I promise not to pour out the wine
Nor to drink a sip

Your bright face is my day
Your dark curls bring the night
If you do not let me near you
I promise not go to sleep…nor rise

Your magnificence has made me a wonder
Your charm has taught me the way of love
I am the progeny of Abraham
I'll find my way through fire

Please, let me drink water from the jug
This love is not a short-lived fancy
It is the daily prayer, the year-after-year fast
I live it, like an act of worship, till the end of my life

But then, a tree
Blessed not with fruits of your bounty
Will be dry wood for fire
Even if it drinks the ocean

On the wings of the Friend, fly o my heart!
Fly and look upward
For high on the peak of presence
Earthlings like you will not be let in

Others praise God at the time of affliction
You stay awake day and night
Steady, watchful like the wheel of the firmament

Time to stop speaking of the Friend
Jealousy won't let me scatter the perfume to the wind

translation from Rumi's Divan by Fatemeh Keshavarz