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					Ramadan Mubarak! Timetable p. 12

United Views
Your Monthly Source For Canadian-Muslim News
October 2004 Vol. 1 Issue 3

CIC urges Muslims to share Ramadan festivities with non-Muslim neighbours
Canadian Islamic Congress The Canadian Islamic Congress is urging Canadian Muslims to network with their neighbours. The lunar month of Ramadan -during which Muslims abstain from food and drink between dawn and sunset -- begins following confirmation of the sighting of the new moon, which was expected to be Friday, October 15th or Saturday October 16th. The last day of Ramadan is expected to be Saturday November 13. On the very next day, Sunday, November 14, comes Eid-ul-Fitr which celebrates the breaking of the Ramadan fast with thanksgiving and community festivities. During the month of Ramadan, Muslims across the country will hold community Iftar dinners, as well as special Eid Day celebrations when sweets and cookies are shared among families and friends, new clothes are worn, and children receive gifts of toys. As in previous years, the CIC is encouraging Canadian Muslims to invite their non-Muslim neighbours, friends, co-workers, and their childrens' school-mates to join in these events. The Muslim community of Kitchener, for example, plans to hold a community Iftar dinner on the first Saturday of Ramadan -and at the top of the guest list are the staff of a local fire station. ~edited for UV News

Moon Sightings?

How do Muslims respond to the differences over the moon sighting for Ramadan?

Animated feature about Islam comes to North America. See ad on pg. 2 Monthly Khutba …… pg. 10
Sikander Ziad Hashmi Once again, we find a moon sighting controversy on our hands. Regardless of whether or not the Ramadhan moon was really sighted in Austin, Texas, and whatever the status of the testimony, one thing is for sure: It leaves the average Muslim in a state of confusion. What should we do? Who do we follow? Moon sighting differences are nothing new. With the absence of an established Muslim leadership (which is a separate topic altogether), such differences are almost inevitable. It may seem like a big fuss over something minor, but in reality, many of these controversies are caused by significant (albeit seemingly small) differences in understanding, interpretation, and application of the rules of fiqh (Islamic jurisprudence). They may seem small but they are significant because they make the difference between fast and no fast, and Eid and no Eid. The fact that the moon sighting decision plays a vital role in the population’s carrying out (or lack thereof) of its obligations (such as fasts) goes to show how weighty and important these decisions are. Surely, such decisions should be made by those who are trustworthy and who are experts in the field, in this case fiqh, since it is Islamic jurisprudence that spells out when whose testimony is acceptable, and under which conditions. After all, moon sighting for the Islamic lunar calendar is a religious matter that has been practiced since the time of the Prophet (SAW). Therefore, individuals who are righteous, trustworthy, and are well versed with Islamic jurisprudence and law Maulana Sikander Ziad Hashmi discusses should make moon-sighting the benefits of Ramadan. decisions. Similarly, when there is a difference of opin- Editorial …………….. pg. 19 ion, we should try to follow organizations whose leader- Maulana Habeeb Ali discusses the finer ship consists of such indi- aspects of Love in Islam. viduals. For those of us who are of Mosque Listings….....pg. 6-7 the investigative nature, it might so happen that we learn All the information you need the food you the decision made by the buy and eat. leaders in our community was incorrect. In such cases, if there are two groups in the community, we should follow the one that seems to be correct. Returns… p. 20-21

Taqwa-Boy

(Continued on page 2)

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News

UV NEWS October 2004

Ramadan moon sighted
(Continued from page 1) When all the leaders in the community make a unanimous moon sighting decision we feel is incorrect, we don’t have a choice and following the unanimous decision is incumbent upon us. Ultimately, the responsibility for making the correct decision lies squarely on the shoulders of those making the decisions. Any consequences or repercussions from incorrect decisions are purely their responsibility and the average Muslim has nothing to worry about. Since it is not our responsibility, we should try to refrain from creating chaos and fitnah in the community by publicly bashing the decision makers and encouraging dissent, although constructive criticism may be given in a civil manner if it may help in improving the situation. As well, there’s nothing wrong in advising others to follow a certain organization instead of another if one is aware of problems in the latter’s decision-making process. Quite often in such situations, families and friends end up being split over whom to follow. Those who have opted to follow the ‘other’ side shouldn’t be targeted or put down. Everyone should be free to follow whomever he or she trusts most. Now, a difference in the start-date of Ramadhan begs the question: When do the possible nights of Laylatul Qadr (Nights of Power) fall (since one group’s odd days will be another’s even)? What must be understood is that Allah and His divine mechanism (i.e. angels, etc.) are neither restricted by nor bound to time, days, and dates. The dates and times specified to us, such as the odd nights of the last 10 nights of Ramadhan, are just for our (i.e. the human being’s) understanding and organization. Thus, each group can seek out the Nights of Power according to its own calendar and Insha-Allah, each person will receive the intended reward on the basis of his or her intention. After all, differences in dates have almost always occurred since the beginning of the Islamic lunar calendar, since there has never been a universal, global calendar. The dates have always varied, based on when each community was able to see the moon. Ramadan Mubarak to everyone.

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Ramadan 1425

The World At A Glance
~ UV News International desk

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sage in full: I send warm greetings to Muslims in the United States and around the world as they begin observance of Ramadan, the holiest season in their faith. Ramadan commemorates the revelation of the Qur'an to Muhammed. By teaching the importance of compassion, justice, mercy, and peace, the Qur'an has guided many millions of believers across the centuries. Today, this holy time is still set aside for voting system. A week after the elections ballots are still being tallied from around the country, which are pouring in by air, donkey and cars. The U.S. back interim president Hamid Karzai is favoured to win the elections, easily beating the remaining candidates for president. Muslims to remember their dependence on God through fasting and prayer, and to show charity to those in need. American history has taught us to welcome the contributions of men and women of all faiths, for we share the fundamental values of religious freedom, love of family, and gratitude to God. Americans who practice the Islamic faith enrich our society and help our Nation build a better future. Laura joins me in sending our best wishes. George W. Bush was the case with most Arab states this year. Unlike as in previous years, the Algerian government has allocated around 1.5 million food packages to be handed out among the poor in the Arab Maghreb country during the dawn-to-dusk fasting month. The packages, containing the main basic food stuffs such as rice, sugar, milk, oil, meat, vegetables, and fruits, are distributed among the poor by the Islamic Algerian scouting teams. According to the estimates of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in 2003, 57 percent of Algerians are considered poor, but the local opposition put the percentage at 70 percent, of which some 12 million have a daily income of one dollar or less. ~www.islamonline.net

George W. Bush sends Ramadan greetings leading up to presidential Election
President George W. Bush released his Ramadan message for Muslims in the U.S. at the beginning of the holy month. In his message, Bush talks about how the Qur’an was revealed to Muhammad, peace be upon him, in this month and that this revelation teaches “compassion, justice, mercy, and peace.” He also added, “the Qur’an has guided many millions of believers across the centuries.” This message comes just before the U.S. presidential elections, scheduled for November 2nd. While Muslims in the U.S. played a significant role in bringing Bush to power four years ago, it is likely that his actions since then will dissuade the AmericanMuslim population from making the same choice, or mistake in some people’s eyes. With American forces fighting Muslims in Iraq and Afghanistan, it is unlikely that Bush’s Ramadan letter will hold any weight in the eyes of Muslim voters. Muslims hope that the same efforts they made to elect Bush, can be the cause of his downfall this year. This race is shaping up to be just as close as last election, where George Bush squeaked ahead of then vice-president Al Gore, by winning the state of Florida, in part due to the Muslims support. Come November 2nd there is likely to be a different vote cast by American Muslims. Here is Bush’s Ramadan mesone of the first steps towards democracy, Afghans cast their vote in the country’s first election since the overthrow of the Taliban government by the United States army. There were expected to be terrorist attacks to disrupt the proceedings, but aside from a few minor incidents, the elections continued as planned. However, the elections were not free from controversy. Out of the 18 candidates running for president 15 boycotted the elections due to allegations of corruption in the

Caribbean Muslims assist Hurricane-torn Grenada
(Trinidad, WI) As the Grenadian people picked up the pieces after one of the worst hurricanes this season passed over their island, they received aid and assistance from all over the world. Much of that assistance came from neighbouring islands, including the twin island republic of Trinidad and Tobago. The Muslim community alone were able to send over $250,000 CAN in aid to the ravaged island. Grenada is also home to numerous Muslims who lost their homes along with the rest of the population. Aside from sending aid, many Caribbean countries also opened up their doors to fleeing refugees and gave them shelter. Many Grenadians arrived in Trinidad, Guyana and Barbados, still in shock from losing everything they owned, including their own houses.

Ramadan Food Packages for the Poor
(ALGIERS, Algeria) The Algerian Red Crescent and state-run solidarity committees have intensified their humanitarian efforts with the start of Ramadan, distributing food packages among the poor in the north African country. The intensive effort continued for the fifth day Tuesday, October 19, as the holy month started in Algeria on Friday, October 15, as

Afghans cast vote amidst controversy
(KABUL, Afghanistan) Touted as

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This paper was presented at the 6th International Islamic Finance Forum in Turkey, Istanbul Sept 27-29 2004. UM Financial CEO Omar Kalair made the presentation. Canada, A New Market for Shariah Compliant Products Canada has made much progress in Islamic finance in the last few years. Demographics Canada as a whole has a population of close to 32 million people. Presently in Canada we estimate the population of Canada Population 2004 32 Million GDP 2004 29700 Muslims in Canada Year Population Percentage 1971 33,000 (0.1%) 1981 98,000 (0.3%) 1991 256,000 (0.9%) 2001 580,000 (2.0%) 2004 850,000 (2.7%) estimated Muslims is close to 1 million. UM Financial UM Financial was formed two years ago. UM stands for United Muslims, which was the name of the charity, created 4 years ago. Its focus was media and events. We have been running a Radio Islam show and a monthly newspaper with many largescale community events. The need for Islamic finance was paramount and with a group of scholars, lawyers and academics the task was taken up to research into Shariah compliant financial products in Canada.

Across The Nation

UV NEWS October 2004

Canada Represented at International Islamic Finance Forum in Turkey
GOAL of UM Financial To offer Ethical and Shariah compliant products to the estimated 850,000 Canadian Muslims. VISION In keeping with Islamic law, providing investment products for the Muslim community. MISSION Mission of the UM Financial is to establish and operate a financial services in Canada that will be the leading provider of Sharia’ compliant financial products and services for the Muslim community. MANDATE To implement an entity providing Sharia’ compliant services, that yields a return to all parties within five years. THE OBJECTS The objects of UM Financial are: to offer Islamic Sharia’ compliant services; to help Muslims move out of situations involving Riba; to educate Muslims about Riba and others about ethical investments. Proposed products & services: Home Financing (Shariah Compliant) Investment Products (Shariah Compliant) Bank Account Services (Shariah Compliant) (Banks offer these products as the majority of their services i.e. Banking, Mortgage and Investments) Our 2 years of research and development took us through every type of Islamic financing. We started with an Ijara model and had our legal team design. In total we went to 20 financial institution showcasing our business model and the demand for Shariah compliant financing for homebuyers. After consulting with Mufti Taqi Uthmani and Sh Yusuf Delerenzo we designed a Canadian based Musharikah model which again we showcased to the financial institutions. Due to the implied ownership and added liability relative to conventional mortgages it was also denied by all. Finally we took up the Murabaha model and showcased this model with some lawyers of financial institutions we were working with. This model appeased them and with some reworking and brainstorming a model was created that was Shariah compliant and complied with the bank act. While in the process of making a Islamic finance product the option came up with one bank who was willing to create a Shariah compliant bank account whose deposits would be spent according to how our Shariah advisory board dictated. They also wished to launch an investment products tied with the Dow Jones Islamic Market later in the year. Our website was launched and with our own internal 30,000 email list in a matter of months we had pre-register list of 2,000 families looking for home financing. We estimated within Canada a demand exists for a 1,000 Islamic home financing products every year. Over 5 years that represents 5,000 households and with an average mortgage of $200,000 it totals a financing market of 1 billion dollars. We used conservative numbers with an estimate of 200,000 households across Canada within 5 years we were looking at a 2.5% 96% interested in Shariah bank accounts 93% interested in Shariah retirement investments 89% interested in Shariah education investments 89% interested in Shariah takaful insurance compliant compliant compliant compliant

penetration into the Muslim market. Online Survey Results - 2000 Families Responded (8000 individuals) 98% interested in Shariah compliant home financing UM financial roles are mainly to help develop Shariah Compliant products with existing financial institution. It will be the front-end marketing company in the community and will have its Shariah advisory board ensure products fall within the Shariah boundaries. UM financial model is more like a shop, which brings financial products that meet its criteria and market it to the Muslim market. With the increasing Muslim market in Canada we believe it’s an opportune time to bring out Shariah compliant products now that a critical mass exist. UM financial goal is to a mimic a retail bank. Today the average Muslim in Canada uses a bank for bank accounts, home financing and investments. Presently we have a bank account product our mortgage product will launch in the next month or so and our investment products at the end of the year. www.umfinancial.com

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Ramadan 1425

Around Town

5
to shelter and employment, to personal counseling. The “New Muslims for Hajj” program is a fully-sponsored, charitable undertaking that will select 20 new Muslims, brothers and sisters, to make the Pilgrimage to Mecca. Upon their return, it is expected that they will have a greater view of the precincts of Islam, and a sense of identity with Ummah. Other religious groups have undertaken similar programs; Birthright Israel, for example, funds a free 10-day trip to Israel for all people who can claim at least a Jewish grandparent. It is time for the Muslim community to offer educational trips. “Its important for the new Muslims to realize what a great religion they have been guided to,” says director Muhammad Robert Heft, who is himself a convert of 6 years, “These people will come back and relate their experiences to others, and it is especially beneficial because Hajj shows us how Islam is about equality and for all walks of life.” It is strongly believed that Hajj is a result based program and new muslims need something dynamic to impact on their lives and Iman. With the month of Ramadhan upon us, it is the best time to give charity and to help fellow Muslims to strengthen their faith. Charitable donations and questions about the program can be directed to Muhammad Heft at the Islamic Foundation of Toronto by contacting (416) 3210909 ext.245, or emailing mrheft@yahoo.com.

New Muslim Support Group to send reverts to Hajj
Abdullah Misra Each year, hundreds of individuals from diverse backgrounds choose to embrace Islam. By doing so, they join a family that numbers more than 6 million in North America alone; they choose to become Muslims. Alarmingly, there is also the statistic that shows how a sizeable percentage of converts end up leaving the faith and reverting back to their old religion after a certain period of time. This is a silent and disturbing trend that needs no formal reference; many times, we ask about a new brother or sister that we once used to see regularly: “Where is so-and-so? I haven’t seen him around for months!” As we communally shrug our shoulders without concern, someone who is “taking a break” from the faith due to lack of support or confusion has already made up their minds never to return. We see a shahada on Friday and rarely ask about them the following day. Many new Muslims have trouble sorting out how they will integrate Islam into the values they have held for their entire lives, or are left befuddled by inter-group squabbling about moon sightings and madhabs. The result is that they feel alienated and far from the closeknit nature of Islam that many of us have already imported from “back home”. For many older Muslims, their faith is strengthened by memories of an entire neighborhood in the spirit of Ramadhan, national holidays on a jubilant ‘Eid, and most of all, a life-changing journey to the Holy Lands. The New Muslim Support Group at the Islamic Foundation of Toronto aims to give these converts that same chance to experience the culmination of Islamic spirit and reinforcement of Islamic identity with a trip to Hajj. Formerly known as Paradise4Ever and now under the wing of the IFT, the New Muslim Support Group has a long repertoire of services it offers, from monthly conferences,

Ten frequently asked questions about Ramadan
Below are short answers to ten Ramadhan-related questions that many of us often wonder about: 1. I sleep in and miss suhoor (the pre-dawn meal). Can I still fast? Yes. Although suhoor is recommended because it's a sunnah (tradition) of the Prophet Muhammad (SAW), a fast is still valid without it. 2. What if I forget to make niyyah (intention) before beginning my fast? No problem. Intention for a Ramadhan fast may be made until half of day time on the day of the fast. 3. Although I am aware of the fact that I’m fasting, I mistakenly swallow some water whilst making wudhu. Is my fast broken? Yes. The fast for that day must be made up after Ramadhan. 4. I forget that I am fasting and chow down an entire meal. When I finish, I realize I was fasting. That’ll break my fast for sure, right? Nope. If one truly forgets that one is fasting and ends up eating or drinking, the fast is not broken. 5. I cut myself and start bleeding, or let’s say I throw up. Will my fast be invalidated? Bleeding will not invalidate the fast. Throwing up involuntarily will not break the fast. However, throwing up on purpose will break the fast if it is a mouthful. But if it is less than a mouthful, it will not break the fast (even

~Sikander Ziad Hashmi

though it was on purpose). 6. I’m in class at iftar (fast breaking time at sunset) and don’t have access to dates. How do I break my fast? Dates, although preferred, are not mandatory for breaking the fast. One may break the fast with water or any other Halal food/drink. 7. I don’t feel like fasting today.
(Continued on page 8)

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Mosque Guide

UV NEWS October 2004

Ramadan 1425

Mosque Listings

7

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Around Town

UV NEWS October 2004

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Umm Talha It all started with a very innocent question. “How do you feel about going back to school?” I asked a family friend’s son. In front of my very own eyes, I could see the eyes begin to glaze over and the shoulders begin to droop as he gave a very sad shrug. When I told my son we were going to begin school soon, I received a very wide grin that was filled with happiness, excitement and too much mischief, in my opinion! I wondered if my son’s reaction was because he is home schooled. Alhamdulillah, we home school all year round and he doesn’t know the concept of the 2 months of “freedom” every year that is common with public and Islamic schools. Not that there is anything wrong with that, but we are of the opinion that learning does not take place in a designated building, between the hours of 9 and 3 from Monday to Friday. We believe learning is a lifelong journey, one that takes place 24 hours a day, 7 seven days a week. “Back to school” for many children means

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Ramadan questions, answered
(Continued from page 5)

rushed mornings, soggy lunches, homework, and reduced time to pursue personal interests. “Back to school” for my son means relaxed mornings, fresh meals at home in the company of one or more family members, 2-3 hours of “home work”, which includes Islamic as well as secular studies, and the remainder of the day to go to the masjid for prayers, read, play on the computer, play with his toys, go to the playground, etc. We always have plenty of time to bake, go for a walk, play a board game, go to the library, or just snuggle together on the crouch and read. In my opinion, the difference in reactions stems from the fact that my son still has a love for learning. Learning for him is fun, masha-Allah, because it is not something that is forced on him at prescribed times. Learning permeates our life from the minute we wake up to the moment we fall asleep. Living life is learning!! I only pray that his life of learning follows the Straight Path and is illuminated by the Holy Qur’an and the Sunnah of the Blessed Rasulullah (SAW). Ameen!!

HAJJ DRAFT & QURBANI NOT INCLUDED

Can I make up for it later? Fasting is prescribed for each day in the month of Ramadhan and must not be missed unless one has a valid excuse (such as illness or long-distance travel). Not feeling like fasting is not a valid excuse. Missing fasts without a valid excuse is a serious sin and must be made up after Eid. However, the Prophet, peace be upon him said, “A person who misses his/her fast deliberately cannot make it up even if they fast for a lifetime. 8. I accidentally blurted out a bad word today. Do I have to make up today’s

fast? While using foul language is contrary to the character of a Muslim, it does not break the ritual of fasting but destroys the substance. 9. I have a doctor’s appointment during the daytime and he may draw some blood or administer a vaccine. Should I still fast? Yes. The drawing of blood or receiving of a vaccine does not break the ritual of fasting but destroys the substance. 10. I miss a salah by mistake. My fast is broken, right? Wrong. Missing salah, intentionally or unintentionally, does not affect one’s fast.

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Ramadan 1425

Islam and You

9
spending the same time multiplying good deeds? Nightly prayers give us the chance to listen to the recitation of the Holy Quran, and in the process, reel in more good deeds, instead of wasting time in front of the TV or chatting online except when important. Since in Ramadhan, every good deed comes with bonus points, it’s a time to uplift ourselves in every way possible. Not only should we devote more time to worshipping Allah, we must also improve the way we deal with others. Forgiving others, being patient, soft-hearted, and nice are just a few the things we can all work on. Just as we like to head into a sale with a shopping list, why not make a Ramadhan shopping list? What would we like to accomplish in Ramadhan? Be it a resolution to not miss any fasts, recite a certain amount of Quran daily, or stick through taraweeh each night, setting goals can help keep us focused and on-target when the big sale arrives. Even if we get tired in shopping for our worldly, fabricated items, our selfsatisfaction overcomes our tiredness and we feel that it was well worth the effort. There probably will be times in Ramadhan when we’ll suffer. Whether it’s the pain in our legs from standing in taraweeh every night or the hunger after a long day of fasting at school or work, it’ll all be worth it in the long run, InshaAllah. The items we don’t mind getting tired for (when shopping) are with us for a few days, months, or years, yet what we’ll gain in Ramadhan through our efforts and hardships will help us when it really counts – in the Hereafter (Insha-Allah). So let’s start getting ready to take full advantage of the sale of the year!

From the Mimbar
~ Maulana Sikander Z. Hashmi

Take advantage of the sale of the year!
Every year, there is a huge sale. It comes around for a limited time only. Everything we spend is multiplied and our purchases are automatically upgraded at the cash. No coupons are needed. There are no fliers. However, the reactions of and the effects on those who take advantage of this sale are usually evident. Once the sale is over, there’s a huge bash. Most of us take sales pretty seriously. As the Ad-Bag is delivered to our mailbox, we scour over pages upon pages of glossy flyers, fishing out deals. Many of us like making shopping lists. After all, who wants to miss a great bargain? Once at the store, we head straight for the bargains, and sometimes, while we’re there, we notice even more bargains. And we buy them all. As tired as we may be when we get home, we feel great, since we know we’ve picked up some great bargains. The feeling of satisfaction in knowing that we got the most bang for our buck is sweet. Yet, our purchases only last us as long as they’re around or at the most, until we’re around. After that, they’ll be as useless as the used napkin lying helplessly on my desk. But this annual sale is very different. For starters, we don’t need any money to benefit from the sale. We don’t even need to leave home. There are no receipts and everything is recorded automatically. Most notable of all, we can’t see the great deals we acquire. They’re automatically deposited into our account. Welcome to Ramadhan. For a limited number of days each year, we are offered to the exclusive opportunity to put our good deed mechanism into high-gear, and along with that, improve ourselves. Each of our good actions are upgraded at least one notch. A non-obligatory action fetches the reward of a fardh (obligatory action), and the reward of a fardh is multiplied by seventy. Regarding Ramadhan, the Prophet (SAW) is reported to have said: “…Whoever draws nearer (to Allah) by performing any of the (optional) good deeds in (this month) shall receive the same reward as performing an obligatory deed at any other time, and whoever discharges an obligatory deed in (this month) shall receive the reward of performing seventy obligations at any other time...” [Narrated by Ibn Khuzaymah] In another hadith, the Messenger of Allah (SAW) is reported to have said: “…(It is) a month of blessing, in which Allah covers you with blessing, for He sends down Mercy, decreases sins and answers prayers…” [Narrated by Tabarani] Over the course of the year, we get spoiled. Our environment and other factors ever so slowly drift us away from our true purpose, the service of our Lord. Each Ramadhan, we get an opportunity to tame ourselves and come closer to Allah. We all need a diet that allows us to stay away from calories and fat that not only build up on our physical bodies, but affect us spiritually as well. Horses are tamed and made submissive to their masters by reducing the food given to them. Our bodies and our nafs (base desires) aren’t much different. Allah (SW) says: “O you who believe! Observing the fast is prescribed for you as it was prescribed for those before you, that you may become God-fearing.” (Quran: 2:183) Fasting is not only staying away from food and drink, rather the spiritual aspect of fasting calls for keeping away from all bad deeds that rot our soul. Wouldn’t it be plain dumb for us to spend time on bad deeds when we can instead be

Your daily fiqh
Question: Zaid and his wife Zainab had a serious altercation and on this when he was leaving for abroad he left a note of divorce for his wife. Later he presented another note clearly stating he has divorced her three times. Now Zaid claims when his relatives showed him his note with three divorces, they had actually presented a clean sheet of paper for him to sign. As well as two witnesses

Brought to you by Darul Ifta Canada
Answer: Actually the first note of Zaid indicated a divorce based upon his interpretation as it was of an ambiguous nature- take charge of your life. This type of divorcetalaq bayyin- as he admitted to his intention of divorce, is equivalent to one stroke. Remember that a husband is entitled to three strokes of divorce as per a wife. With the second note being clearly a three-stroke equivalent- talaq mugallazah, which is irrevocable, then he has exhausted all three strokes and as such she cannot return to his marriage, even after a ceremony of Nikah. She is forbidden for him and any such further relationship will be considered adulterous and a grave sin. This is an insult to the Sharia. It is forbidden and a terrible act of innovation to utter three divorces at once, and even so, they will become effective, causing irreparable damage since such a divorce is irrevocably three divorces. Sad but true. Allah knows best.

signed, with the claim that they will have the previous sentence of three divorces copied to this newly signed document, through court procedures. Zaid claims this second procedure tantamounts to coercion. However, despite all of this, presently Zaid and Zainab seem to be returning to normalcy and want to live as husband and wife again. Is this possible Islamically?

Mufti Yusuf Panchbhaya Darul Ifta Canada

Sayyidul Istighfar The Best of All Repentance
The Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace said, “The best of forgiveness is to say, ‘O Allah! You are my Lord. There is no god but you. You created me and I am Your slave. I am on Your covenant and promise as much as I am able. I seek refuge in you from the wrongs I have done. I admit to You all the blessings You have bestowed upon me, and I admit to You my sins. So forgive me, for none forgives sins but You.’ ” The Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) then said, “Whoever says it during the day, with conviction, and then dies that day before night falls will be of the people of Paradise. And whoever says it at night, with conviction, and then dies before day break will be

10
Dear Muslim Brother/Sister;

Ramadan 1425

Assalamu Alykum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatahu Ramadan Mubarak! Madresa Ashraful Uloom is a registered charity since 1993 working to provide education in an Islamic environment with special attention paid towards upbringing of our future generations. We've been running two campuses in Scarborough and Etobicoke (Toronto, Ontario, Canada). Since 1993 Al Ashraf has produced 12 students who became Hafiz and 3 continued on to become Alim. We have had many students who graduated and went onto Darul Ulooms, Colleges and Universities after gaining their primary and secondary Education. As a strategic long-term vision we have acquired a former 110-acre 80,000 sq. ft. boarding school. Renamed Darul Uloom of Canada, this project is situated in Bowmanville, Ontario approximately 30 minutes drive from Toronto off Highway 401. Nestled in a quiet community, now expanding with growing housing offers, this self-contained and secluded residential college campus offers 110-landscaped acreage and 14 buildings, with latest technology, altogether covering approximately 80,000 sq ft. At a net cost of $4 Million this Darul Uloom Canada models an Islamic University, tailored for Western dynamics. Simultaneously, the Cordoba International College of Canada (CICC) will be a private boarding high school, established as the academic alternative for moral excellence and accredited by the Ministry of Education. A payment of $2 million is due in the next 6 months and we humbly request you to make a generous tax-deductible donations to our registered charity. May Allah reward you and your family with prosperity. Wasalamu Alykum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatahu

____________________ Mufti Yusuf Panchbhaya

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11

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Faith and Spirituality

UV NEWS October 2004
This excerpt from Ash-shifa is translated by Aisha Abdurrahman Bewley in “Muhammad: Messenger of Allah”

Ramadan 1425/2004
Day Fri Sat Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Rama- GregorFajr Sunrise Dhuhr dan ian 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 15/10 16/10 17/10 18/10 19/10 20/10 21/10 22/10 23/10 24/10 25/10 26/10 27/10 28/10 29/10 30/10 31/10 1/11 2/11 3/11 4/11 5/11 6/11 7/11 8/11 9/11 10/11 11/11 12/11 13/11 6:12 6:13 6:14 6:15 6:16 6:18 6:19 6:20 6:21 6:22 6:23 6:25 6:26 6:27 6:28 6:29 5:30 5:31 5:33 5:34 5:35 5:36 5:37 5:38 5:39 5:41 5:42 5:43 5:44 5:45 7:32 7:34 7:35 7:36 7:37 7:39 7:40 7:41 7:42 7:44 7:45 7:46 7:48 7:49 7:50 7:51 6:53 6:54 6:54 6:55 6:58 6:59 6:59 7:02 7:03 7:05 7:05 7:07 7:09 7:09 1:04 1:04 1:04 1:04 1:03 1:03 1:03 1:03 1:03 1:03 1:03 1:03 1:02 1:02 1:02 1:02 12:02 12:02 12:02 12:02 12:02 12:02 12:02 12:02 12:02 12:02 12:02 12:03 12:03 12:03 Asr 4:04 4:03 4:02 4:00 3:59 3:58 3:57 3:55 3:54 3:53 3:52 3:51 3:49 3:48 3:47 3:46 2:45 2:44 2:44 2:43 2:41 2:40 2:40 2:38 2:37 2:36 2:36 2:34 2:34 2:34 Maghrib 6:39 6:37 6:35 6:33 6:32 6:30 6:29 6:27 6:26 6:24 6:23 6:21 6:20 6:18 6:17 6:16 5:14 5:13 5:11 5:10 5:09 5:08 5:06 5:05 5:04 5:03 5:02 5:01 4:59 4:58 Isha 7:53 7:51 7:50 7:48 7:47 7:45 7:44 7:42 7:41 7:39 7:38 7:37 7:35 7:34 7:33 7:32 6:30 6:29 6:29 6:28 6:26 6:24 6:24 6:22 6:21 6:20 6:20 6:19 6:18 6:18

In Praise of the Prophet
Qadi Iyad mentions in the famous Ash-Shifa:

Concerning Allah instructing His creation to say the prayer on the Prophet, His protecting him and removing the punishment because of him Allah says: “Allah would never punish them while you are among them,” (8:33) meaning as long as you are in Makka. When the Prophet left Makka and some of the believers were still there, Allah sent down, “Allah would not punish them as long as they were asking for forgiveness.” This is like His words, “Had they been clearly distinguished, then We would have punished the unbelievers among them with a painful punishment.” (48:25) He also says in the same ayat: “If it had not been for certain men and women believers whom you did not know..” When the believers emigrated, it was revealed, “But what do they have now, that Allah should not punish them?” (8:34) These ayats present one of the clearest demonstrations of the Prophet’s exalted position. The punishment was averted from the people of Makka firstly because of his presence there, and then because of the presence of his Companions after him. When none of them were left in Makka, Allah punished the Makkans by giving the believers power and victory over them. The ayat is also interpreted another way by Abu Musa who said, “The Messenger of Allah said, ‘Allah sent down on me two sureties from my community: the ayat, “Allah will never punish them while you are among the,’ (8:33) and the ayat, “Allah would not punish them as long as they were asking for forgiveness.” (8:33) This harks back to the words of Allah, “We only sent you as a mercy to the worlds.” (21:107) The Prophet said, “I am a surety for my companions.” Some say that this means against innovations and others say it means against disagreement and disorder. One of the men of knowledge said, “The Messenger was the greatest surety while he was alive and he is present as long as his sunna is present. When his sunna dies out, then expect affliction and disorder.” Allah says, “Allah and His angels pray blessings on the Prophet. O believers, pray blessing on him and pray for peace on him.” (33:56) Allah makes merit of His Prophet clear by first praying blessings on him Himself, and then by the prayer of the angels, and then by commanding His slaves to pray blessing and peace on him as well.

Sallallahu alaihi wa salaam!

The Stolen Armour
During the khilafat of Ali (RA): Hadhrat Ali’s (radiyallahu anhu) armour had gone missing. One day, while walking through the market place, he recognized his armour in the possession of a Jew. He went up to the Jew and said, “This is my armour.” The Jew retorted, “Bring witnesses to prove it. Alternatively file a law suit!” Hadhrat Ali (radiyallahu anhu) proceeded to Qadi Shurayh and laid a charge of theft against the Jew. The case came before the Qadi. Both plaintiff and defendant presented themselves before the Qadi. Qadi Shurayh (rah), without being overawed by the presence of Ameerul Mu’mineen, Ali (radiyallahu anhu), seated himself with the stature that the occasion demanded. Calmly, without any trace of discomfort or panic, he commenced proceedings. He asked the Jew, “Does the armour belong to Hadrat Ali (radiyallahu anhu)?” The Jew flatly denied it. Thereupon the Qadi turned to Hadhrat Ali (radiyallahu anhu) and calmly requested, “Bring your witnesses to support your claim.” Hadhrat Ali (radiyallahu anhu) produced two witnesses. One was his son, Hadhrat Husayn (radiyallahu anhu) and the other was his freed slave, whose name was Qambar. In his opinion, the evidence of these two was in accordance to Islamic law. However Qadi Shurayh (rah) addressed Hadhrat Ali (radiyallahu anhu), “Bring another witness in place of Hadhrat Hasan (radiyallahu anhu). The evidence of your slave, (seeing he was freed) is accepted.” Hadhrat Ali (radiyallahu anhu) replied, “I have no other witness.” Due to the lack of sufficient evidence – a second acceptable witness – Qadi Shurayh (rah) dismissed the case acting according to the Shariah and not according to his personal reliance on the truthfulness of Hadhrat Ali (radiyallahu anhu). The Jew in the meantime was observing the entire proceeding with full attention. On leaving the courtroom, he watched intently to see the reaction of Hadhrat Ali (radiyallahu anhu). There was not the slightest bit of annoyance on the face of Hadhrat Ali (radiyallahu anhu). Not a word of displeasure regarding the verdict was uttered. The Jew, overcome by this sterling character addressed Hadhrat Ali (radiyallahu anhu) thus: “The reality of the situation has become quite clear to me, your religion is certainly a true one, and your attitude is its effect on you.” The Jew continued, “Here, take it, the armour is yours! And I herewith proclaim that I bear witness, there is none worthy of worship besides Allah and Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi wa sallam) is his servant and messenger.” Hazrat Ali (radiyallahu anhu) said, “I, in turn present this armour to you as gift!” The Jew remained in close association with Ali (ra) until he became Shaheed (martyr) in a battle. An excerpt from Hayaatus Sahaaba by Maulana Zakariya Kandhlawi

Hadith of the Month
Narrated ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Abbas: Allah's Apostle was the most generous of all the people, and he used to reach the peak in generosity in the month of Ramadan when Gabriel met him. Gabriel used to meet him every night of Ramadan to teach him the Qur'an. Allah's Apostle was the most generous person, even more generous than the strong uncontrollable wind (in readiness and haste to do charitable deeds).

Ramadan 1425

Country Profile

13
by Syed Omair Quadri culture. Today, this oppression continues against Sinkiang’s Uighur Muslims. No other ethnic or religious minority, except possibly Tibetans, have been so brutally oppressed for so long as Uighur Muslims have by China’s communist regime. Over the past 1400 years, Chinese Muslims have developed a distinct Islamic culture, meshing the beauty of Islam and the beauty of Han traditions so magnificently. This unique amalgamation has made Islamic China one of the most celebrated periods of Islamic history.

“… even unto China”
China has been close to Muslim hearts ever since the famous Prophetic tradition in which the Prophet (pbuh) advised us to “seek knowledge even unto China.” Today, the country is home to more than ten million Muslims. China’s encounter with Islam began relatively early in the history of the Islamic empire. In 29 A.H. (650 C.E.), only eighteen years after the Blessed Prophet’s (pbuh) death, Uthman ibn Affan (ra), the third of the righteous caliphs, sent a delegation headed by Sa’ad ibn Abi Waqqas (ra) to the Chinese emperor Yung Wei inviting him and his people to accept the Oneness of God and the Prophethood of Muhammad (pbuh). The emperor greatly admired the teachings of Islam and considered them to be comHowever, the presence of a new faith was resented by many, and for the larger part of the next century, the religions of Islam and Buddhism struggled against each other for the hearts and minds of the Chinese masses. But this struggle began to shift in favour of the Muslims when in 133 A.H. (751 C.E.) the Abbasid caliph al-Mansur dispatched a small Muslim force of 4,000 that defeated the Chinese army and captured control of the province of Sinkiang in northwest China. This victory opened the floodgates and Islam became infused within Chinese society and culture. Muslims began migrating to China from all over the Islamic world, married the natives who had converted to Islam, and built mosques and schools. The city of Bukhara, the birthplace of Imam Bukhari and then a part of China, came to be known as the “Pillar of Islam.” The Muslims virtually controlled business and trade in China for approximately the next 800 years. But above all, they were recognized for their fair dealings, obeying the law, and self-discipline which inspired thousands more to convert to the religion. In the first thousand years or so, there is no record of any anti-Muslim sentiment within Chinese society. However, much of these accomplishments were lost during the Mongol invasions which almost nearly wiped out Chinese

Muslim culture, along with a great extent of the rest of the Islamic empire. The overthrow of the Mongol rulers and the establishment of the Ming dynasty would introduce perhaps the most famous Chinese Muslim. Zheng He, a Muslim and one of China’s greatest explorers, changed the fate of China forever and catapulted the country into riches making it one of the foremost superpowers of its time. Zheng He’s adventures took him all throughout the world from the Indian subcontinent to the Persian Gulf and even Africa. It is reported that his navy was larger than all the European navies combined at that time. It is also rumoured that he discovered America in 1421 C.E., seventy years before Christopher Columbus. The Chinese Revolution which introduced communism to China in 1948 was disastrous for Muslims in the country. The communist government publicly declared Islam as one of its enemies and worked to abolish Muslim life and

patible with the teachings of Confucius. In order to show his reverence for Islam, Yung Wei allowed Sa’ad ibn Abi Waqqas (ra) and his companions to propagate Islam freely to the people of China and build a mosque in the Chinese port city of Ch’angan. After fourteen centuries, the mosque still stands there today.

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UV NEWS October 2004

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UV NEWS October 2004

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Family & Life

17

The Newborn Baby
ARRIVAL OF THE NEWBORN, AQEEQAH & NAMING THE CHILD The arrival of a newborn into this world is an occasion, which brings much joy and delight to the respective parents, families and friends. The newborn breathes new life and inspiration to the hearts of the parents. All difficulties and tribulations are forgotten and the parent’s sole focus and concern now becomes their new baby. However, it is also imperative to bear in mind that coupled with this joy and delight there is a great responsibility that is placed on the shoulders of the parents. The Shariah has prescribed certain practices on this occasion, which are very beneficial and if carried out correctly will have positive life bearing effects on the child. Furthermore, all meaningless traditions, rituals and customs, which create negative repercussions for the child should be abandoned. Only those practices directed to us by the Quraan Shareef, Hadith and practices of the Sahaba (RA) should be carried out. AFTER THE BIRTH OF THE CHILD If possible the very first thing to do is give the child a Ghusl (Islamic Bath). Thereafter, the parents should request an Aalim or a pious person to give Azaan in the child's right ear and Iqaamah in the left ear. It is preferable that this practice is undertaken by an Aalim or a pious person so that the child can be affected by his piety. However, in the absence of such people, any Muslim may perform this ibadah (act of worship) The benefit of giving Azaan and Iqaamat is, the voice of Islam, the greatness of Allah Ta'ala, the Oneness of Allah Ta'ala and the message of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) will reach the depths of his/her heart and that is likely to grow up as a practicing obeying Muslim. THE AFTERBIRTH AND NAVALCORD The afterbirth and naval-cord should be buried with due care since they are portions of the human body. As such, it should be treated with respect and honour. Disposing it in the drain or garbage is contrary to this concept. It is for this reason, too, that the dead body of a human being may not be cremated, as is customary among the people of other religions. TAHNEEK Tahneek means, placing a chewed piece of morsel in the mouth of an infant, preferably dates. Honey may be an ideal substitute for it. This practice has been established from the several Ahadith of Nabi (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam), who himself performed the Tahneek of two Sahabah (companions) namely Abdullah bin Zubair and Abdullah bin Talha (RA). In one hadith reported in Sahih Bukhari and Sahih Muslim, the daughter of Abu Bakr (Radiallaahu Anha), Asma, gave birth to Abdullah bin Zubair in Quba. He was brought to Nabi (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) and placed onto his blessed lap. Nabi (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) asked for some dates, then chewed it, placed his saliva in the infant’s mouth and performed the tahneek. Then Nabi (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) made dua for him and invoked blessings upon him. He was the first child to be born in Islam after the Hijrah (migration). A learned Aalim or pious elder of the family should also preferably perform this practice. In the absence of these people, any male Muslim may perform Tahneek. It must be remembered that the practice of Tahneek is Mustahab (preferable). If it is done, the desired benefits will be achieved, and if for some reason it is left out, there is no harm or sin. AQEEQAH Aqeeqah in Shariah means to remove the baby's hair on the head, slaughter an animal on behalf of the child, and give a child a suitable Islamic name. These practices should be carried out preferable on the 7th day after birth. (Note, in determining the 7th day, the day of birth should be considered as the 1st) It is Mustahab (preferable) to sacrifice an animal on behalf of the child on the 7th day. It is also mustahab to remove the baby's hair on this day, and silver equal to the weight of the hair be given in charity. If the above practices are being carried out on the 7th day, then it will also be preferable to name the child on this day. It has been reported in one Hadith that Nabi (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) performed the Aqeeqah of Hazrat Hasan (RA) and instructed Fatima (RA) to remove his hair and give its weight's equivalent silver in charity. Its weight's equivalent was one dirham or less. (Mishkaat) Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: "The child is safeguarded through his Aqeeqah, which is slaughtering on his behalf on the 7th day, shaving his hair from the head and giving him an Islamic name. (Mishkat) For the purpose of Aqeeqah, 2 sheep or goats should slaughtered for a boy and 1 sheep or goat for a girl. Alternately 2 shares from a bull or camel etc. can be sacrificed for a boy and 1 share for a girl. NB. This practice should be carried out according to one’s financial capacity and means. Unnecessarily burdening oneself beyond one's means will be undesirable. The meat of the Aqeeqah is free and permissible for anyone to eat. Oneself and one’s family may partake or it may be distributed etc. The meat of Aqeeqah cannot be sold. KHATNA (Circumcision) Khatna (circumcision) before the age of seven is also Sunnah (preferable practice) for males. The child's health must be taken into consideration before deciding to do Khatna. Also ensure that it is done by an experienced practitioner. BREAST-FEEDING It is the moral duty of every mother to breast-feed her child. The mother's milk is the most nutritious food for the child. The mother's milk nourishes the child physically and psychologically, it influences the child's character, habits and senses, and it strengthens the bonds of love, affection

No one can explain the joy and jubilance of seeing a newborn baby, except the parents of that blessed child. What is even more intense than that love between parent and child, is the love Allah has for the one who fulfils His commands in this life. For the benefit of parents and parents-to-be we present the fiqh of a newborn baby. ~ taken from www.jamiat.org.za
and intimacy between mother and child. It has numerous other benefits, which have been recently proven scientifically also. All other artificial methods should be avoided unless circumstances do not allow the mother to breast-feed. The mother should always ensure that no haraam food enters the child's belly. The duaas for eating should be recited at the beginning and end of breast-feeding. The maximum period for breast-feeding is two years. PRECAUTION AGAINST MISFORTUNE The world that we live in is infested with many different forms of physical and spiritual evil forces. It is therefore imperative that infants who are more susceptible to these forces be given the maximum protection possible. The following duaas should be recited regularly and blown to the child: • Ayatul Kursi. • Four Quls (Surah 109, 112, 113 and 114). • The following dua. Transliteration :Aoozu bikalimaatillahit taammaat min Sharri kulli ShaytaanewwaHaama wa min Sharri Kulli Aynil laama. Translation: I seek protection by the perfect words of Allah from the evil of every revengeful eye and devil. NAMING THE CHILD It is the vested right of every infant to be honoured with a suitable Islamic name. Islam encourages us to select meaningful and good names for our children. Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) has advised that good and meaningful names be selected for children because the name of person may influence his life dramatically. Today, scientists have also admitted to this fact. The name selected for a child is also an important source of identity of one's religion. Therefore, Muslims are encouraged to name their children after Prophets, Sahabah and pious persons in Islamic history. Today, many Muslims, in their search for a "unique" or "ideal" name, keep a name which is unsuitable or undesirable. Many times a name, which is totally meaningless, carries a bad meaning or has an unIslamic background, is chosen. This negligence is against the spirit of the Hadith and does not fulfil the best interest of the child. Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said, "On the day of Qiyaamah you will be called by your (own) names and the names of your fathers. Therefore keep good names. (Abu Dawood) Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said, " It is the right of a child that his father should give him a good name, and when he comes of age, should get him married, and he should give him the education of the Qur’an." (Kanzul Ummal) Aisha (RA) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) used to change bad names. (Tirmizi) Hadhrat Moulana Ashraf Ali Thanvi (RAH) has mentioned: Allah Ta'ala has placed great effect in words and names. A boy was named Kalimullah by his parents and used to fall ill very often. I changed his name to Salimullah, he was cured. The common meaning of Kalim is “one who is wounded and injured” and Salim means “soft and sound”.

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The almost abandoned Masaajid
UV News Contributor What a spectacular sight indeed! Parking lots full, a sea of bodies flowing into the masjid and experiencing the difficulty in finding a seat is exactly what you’ll see in almost any masjid. However, speaking just about the GTA, this sight is only available to see once a week on Friday afternoons. One is reminded of the jam-packed parking lots and the sea of bodies entering the churches every Saturday or Sunday depending on the area you are living in. On one side of the coin, it’s a blessing of Almighty Allah that so many prayer halls and Masaajid are becoming available to the Muslims. The downfall is that at times, you might find yourself locked outside the masjid if you arrive at unusual hours. Or even worse, when you do go in, you might find the masjid almost empty and all you can hear is the deafening silence. It’s quite sad if you compare this to the masaajid of the past. The masaajid of the past were the centres of society that were open 24 hours a day. Masjid Nabawi was the centre for the dissemination and acquisition of knowledge. Today, thousands of Muslims flock to colleges and universities on a daily basis. It’s too bad we cannot say the same for the houses of Allah. If today, Muslims want to learn about Islam, some people use the excuse that there are not enough scholars around. However, it can easily be said that there are not enough dedicated Muslims when it comes to acquiring knowledge. If the Muslims begin to flock to the masaajid on a daily basis like they do for Friday prayers, then we would be living in an entirely different world. There would be more unity amongst the Muslims, the propagation of Islam could become fullfledged, and teaching and learning could once again inhabit the masaajid. A good start has been made in the GTA, but there is a lot left to do. Let’s all start and take the initiative and frequent the House of Allah on a daily basis - insha Allah we will receive the Help of Allah and be amongst the successful on the Day of Reckoning.

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Nasiha

UV NEWS October 2004

Three ways of knowing a person
~ Mufti Yusuf Panchbhaya
Unless you are in touch with someone you will not know how he or she is, and it is pointless to praise a person before that. Only when there is some kind of attachment does the person’s character come to light. Then it will be obvious whether the person is patient or impatient, friendly or unfriendly, generous or miserly, humble or proud, etc. There are three situations that really expose a person’s character: dealing and behaviour; attitude to one’s neighbours; and traveling on a journey. DEALING AND BEHAVIOR The character of a person becomes known when he or she deals with others. Take for instance a loan transaction between two people. This will show whether the borrower is trustworthy and it also shows whether the lender is patient. Dealing is very important in Islam. It is not foreign to Islam, but rather a part of Islam. There is an entire ruku’ in the Holy Quran dealing with the orders concerning debt. The entire section is concerned with just this one aspect of dealing. Good dealing leaves good impressions on the hearts of people. It increases people’s perception of human value. It opens the door for religious and worldly works. People trust in one who is used to good dealing. The companions of the Prophet (P.B.U.H.) were the best of all people in their dealings. Through interaction they won the hearts of people. Due to their manner in dealings numerous people embraced Islam, but today our manner is different. Everyone can speak for himself or herself. Our interactions with people do not leave good impressions on them. There are of course exceptions to this: there are people who exhibit high morals in their dealings but these are few. If we Muslims would only learn the knowledge of the shariah then it will become obvious how many regulations of the shariah we are leaving today. Due to this neglect we harm not only our life hereafter, but also our present life. One who is not accustomed to good dealings may find it hard in the beginning, but in the long run it becomes easy. One must remember that good dealing is beneficial and bad dealing is harmful even if the immediate situation does not appear so. A person’s behaviour tells a lot about the person. Good behaviour can make friends out of enemies. Allah Ta’ala says in the Qur’an concerning the matter of Da’wah: 'And good and evil are not alike. Repel (evil) with that which is best. And lo, he between whom and thyself was enmity will become as though he were a warm friend. But none is granted it save those who are steadfast, and no one is granted it save those who posses a big fortune.' (Ha Mim Sajdah 34:35) deliberately or otherwise. In spite of all this, we still consider ourselves healthy. We still think ourselves pious. We should at least realize that we are in bad shape. Then only may Allah give us tawfeeq (divine ability) to correct ourselves. Hadhrat Luqman, the wise, advised his son that one whose character is spoiled gets increasing sorrow. Where is the peace of the heart today? more deserving of this gift. He ter of character. sent his present to that poor neighbour. That neighbour too, It is known from a hadith of the thought of yet another person Prophet (P.B.U.H.) that journey is poorer than himself and so sent a piece of the hell fire. One has to the gift along. In this way the goat put up with numerous discomhead passed through seven hands forts and abhorrent situations before returning to the first per- while traveling. This is true even son. This shows the with today’s unmatched sympathy “A neighbour is not technologically and self-sacrifice of only one who lives advanced means those people. Each of next door. One who of transport. One them was poor. Each may cover a long deserved (in fact travels beside you distance in a needed) the food. But on a journey either short time, but they considered the on the train, bus, must still enneed of others before aircraft, etc. is also a counter difficultheir own need. Is there neighbour. One has ties. One has to any example of this be patient in the to fulfill the rights of face of those today? this temporary difficulties. The second example is neighbour as well.” even more touching. A Some travelers Muslim wounded in will be weak, battle was in his dying moments others strong. It is the moral rewhen he groaned for water. When sponsibility of the strong to help water was brought to him he the weak and be patient with heard a call for water from an- them. After the journey the travelother Muslim. He motioned that ers will be left with good as well the water should be taken to that as bad impressions. If one reother person. By the time the wa- ceives help while traveling he or ter got back to him he had she will appreciate this very breathed his last. He would rather much, and remember it for a long die thirsty than drink while some- t i m e . one else needed that water. May It should be mentioned by the Allah quench his thirst with the way, that journeys should not be water that removes thirst for undertaken except when they are good. This kind of sacrifice and necessary for either religious or selflessness is hard to imagine worldly purposes. Time is a trust today surrounded as we are by and should not be wasted in selfishness, greed and deceit. But pointless travel. Even if a journey perhaps we may retain some les- was undertaken due to necessity, son from these incidents. one should try to minimize the Non-Muslim neighbours too have duration of the journey and return a right on us. If he happens to be home as soon as the purpose is the neighbour of a Muslim, the accomplished. One would natuMuslim must accord him the rally have had to suspend many rights of a neighbour. He must religious and worldly activities to fulfill his obligation as a undertake the journey. These neighbour even to a non-Muslim. should be attended to as soon as A neighbour is not only one who possible. lives next door. One who travels beside you on a journey either on Now, to return to our topic, travthe train, bus, aircraft, etc. is also elers could leave good impresa neighbour. One has to fulfill the sions as well as bad. The companrights of this temporary neighbour ions of the Prophet (P.B.U.H.) as well. The words in the Holy left good impressions wherever Qur’an includes this type of they went. People loved them for neighbour. their character, and through their example people came to love IsJ O U R N E Y lam. May Allah give us tawfeeq to act on this. Journey is the third situation that Mufti Yusuf is the president of reveals the character of people. In Madresa Ashraful Uloom a journey one leaves his habitual www.ashrafschool.com surroundings and constantly encounters new situations. This calls for quick thinking and a lot of patience. Comfortable surroundings and easy living are left behind. Ahead are disappointments and difficulties. This is an acid test of one’s character. How one behaves in his or her customary surroundings may often be a matter of habit. How one behaves in unexpected situations is a mat-

An incident from the life of the prophet (P.B.U.H.) will show the usefulness of good character. He Whoever has mercy on the crea- was awake in the cave of Hira tures of Allah, Allah has mercy when for the fist time revelation on him or her. Therefore if one came to him. He returned to his wants to obtain mercy from Allah home frightened, but Khadija he or she must show mercy to- (may Allah be pleased with her) ward the creatures of Allah. Some his wife, comforted him. She of people oppress the course did not creatures of Allah experience the and yet consider “Allah does not dis- encounter with themselves pious grace one who has Jibraeel, alayhis and good people. salaam, thereThey think them- good character… even fore, her comselves close to if a non-Muslim pos- posure was not Allah. But how disturbed. What could one be close sesses good character we need to see to Allah while he or she will be re- here is the charoppressing His of the warded for it in this acter o p h e t creatures? This is P r world.” impossible. (P.B.U.H.) and There is an examKhadija’s confiple of this in the dence in him. life of the Prophet (P.B.U.H.) He She described his character and is sufficient for us as an example. said that Allah will not disgrace a We need not to turn to other ex- man of such good character. She amples. He is the example for all assured him that Allah would not walks of life. His good character disgrace him. We learn from this and behaviour towards others was that Allah does not disgrace one beyond reproach. He was kind who has good character: one who even to his open enemies. He is kind to people, helps people forgave those who did not want to with their problems etc. Allah see him remain alive. Due to his does not disgrace a person like behaviour, many embraced Islam. that in this world. His companions, may Allah be pleased with them, followed in It is also known from a hadith his footsteps and demonstrated that even if a non-Muslim postheir noble character wherever sesses good character he or she they went. This is why people will be rewarded for it in this embraced Islam in droves. Wher- world. However dealing and beever they went winning country haviour brings to light a person’s after country over to Islam people character. were satisfied and pleased with them. They were tough on op- R E L A T I O N A N D pressors but humble and caring N E I G H B O R S for the weak. The second situation that exposes Compare that with our character human character is neighbourly today! Anger is our specialty. relations. Some people suffer Backbiting is our daily food. problems due to bad neighbours; Pride, enmity, jealousy, and mal- others enjoy peace and satisfacice are our daily drink. The Mus- tion due to good neighbours. lim community is burning in the A couple of incidents from the fire of these diseases. But alas! lives of the Prophet’s companThere is no one to put out this ions, may Allah be pleased with increasing fire. We still have them, will serve as examples of some who are able to prescribe how one can care for his or her cures for us. But we do not seem neighbours. interested in applying their medicine. One of the poor Muslims received a goat head as a present. He at Today, we go about harming each once thought of a neighbour who other and cheating each other, is more destitute than himself and

UV NEWS October 2004

Editorials & Opinion

19

Love is real and rewarding!
As the seasons change so does the moods but one thing remains unchanged in life: Selfless love. A poet once said: Love is the bicycle of life. The front wheel rides on understanding and the back wheel peddles on personal happiness. Therefore if love doesn’t work it’s because your tires are punctured. In Arabic a proverb goes Al Hub yumi and yusim- Love blinds and deafens. So sometimes we need to peep beyond the lust and desires and get a grip of true understanding. Love is more than compatibility. One must be prepared to understand why one needs to continue loving. As is executed in Nikha, it is the contract to commit that makes the wheels of understanding roll. But to take this reflection on the Life of Muhammad remains the more insightful experience. He, on whom be peace, was the true icon of love. His many wives did not complain against him, rather after his demise they equally mourned and cried for his longing. In Urdu the value of offering a smile even after the burning heat of life’s crises is amply put by a poet- muskaraana allamaat iman hey. Smiling is act of Faith. And faith one must have to endure the hardships of love. But then can anything be achieved without sacrifice? Allah says those who strive to know Allah, He opens many paths for loving Him. Look at the Companions, may Allah be pleased with them, and decide the ultimate in affection. One said Oh Prophet when I think that you will be in a different place in Jannah than us, it becomes unbearable. I cannot sleep. One woman claimed that her husband, brother and father’s death is light compared to any bruise the Prophet suffered. She cannot bear him getting even a scratch! Certainly it pains to be separate, as love is greased on the palms of togetherness and balmed on the caresses of union. But sometimes it’s helpless. The Prophet recognized this when Uwais couldn’t come to see him. He remarked: A man is with whom he loves. In heart and mind for sure. But on the Day of Resurrection there is no other better place reserved than the companionship of his beloved. Therefore the ashes of hate and debris of backbiting should never dull the sincere affection for someone. Don’t even listen ceremoniously. It kills the spirit like weeds taking the lives of shay. Khalid bin Walid and Sa’ad had some dispute during one of the battles. Someone turned up to Sa’ad backbiting his opponent. He immediately put a stopcork to such loose behaviour. Their differences were for Deen so Deen must be maintained in their disputes and Deen must never be sacrificed in their conversations about each other. Hateful comments poison the growth of sweet affection. To listen to the murderous acts of gossiping is truly treacherous. True love knows no complaints. It’s like waterfalls and if you’ve seen them, the water flows effortlessly from the mountains high. It finds a path away from every bulging obstacle. It doesn’t get entangle with brutes. Its force is too strong to let up. Aisha would sing poems for her beloved Muhammad in the nights- chilly outdoors of Madina, filled with the fragrances of Badr mountain ranges. She said: There is a sun in the sky and I also have a sun. But mine is better than the sky’s. That one appears after dawn but mine appears after Esha- in the night! How sweet! How romantic! Aisha was a true servant of Allah and a genuine custodian of femininity. Heraculius asked Abu Sufyan as to whether any followers of Muhammad deserted. When told no, he remarked that that is the sign of a true religion, as its teaching appeals to the heart. The seat of love is the heart. When the hearts turn mad no money could cure it.

Editorial Cartoon
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Moons .com

On which side??

Collective Sigh!!

Moon sighting Press Conference United Views
Newspaper
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Opinion

Doctor offers health guidelines for Ramadhan
Sikander Ziad Hashmi Slow-digesting foods are foods that contain grains and seeds such as barley, wheat, oats, semolina, beans, lentils, wholemeal flour, and unpolished rice. These are called complex carbohydrates. Fast-burning foods are foods that contain ingredients such as sugar and white flour. They are called refined carbohydrates. According to Dr. Haffejee, whole wheat, grains, seeds, vegetables (like green beans, peas, marrow, spinach), fruit with skin, dried fruit (such as dried apricots, figs, prunes, and almonds) are all examples of fibre-containing foods. Dr. Haffejee says that meals in Ramadhan should be well-balanced, and they should contain foods from each food group, such as fruits, vegetables, meat/chicken/fish, bread/cereals and dairy products. He discourages fried foods that so many of us are addicted to. "Fried foods are unhealthy and should be limited. They cause indigestion, heart-burn, and weight problems," Dr. Haffejee points out. Below are Dr. Haffejee's recommendations for a Ramadhan diet: AVOID: • Fried and fatty foods. • Foods containing too much sugar. • Over-eating especially at sehri. • Too much tea at sehri: Tea makes you pass more urine taking with it valuable mineral salts that your body would need during the day. • Smoking cigarettes: If you cannot give up smoking, cut down gradually starting a few weeks before Ramadhan. Smoking is unhealthy and one should stop completely. EAT: • Complex carbohydrates at sehri so that the food lasts longer making you less hungry. • Haleem is an excellent source of protein and is a slow-burning food. • Dates are excellent source of sugar, fibre, carbohydrates, potassium and magnesium. • Almonds are rich in protein and fibre with less fat. • Bananas are a good source of potassium, magnesium and carbohydrates. DRINK: •

Come Ramadhan, our diet is altered radically. Our meals get condensed in mornings and evenings, with no intake in-between for an extended period of time. For many of us, the intake of oily foods skyrockets. These changes in diet aren't well received by everyone. Dr. Farouk Haffejee of the Islamic Medical Association of South Africa (Durban), has created a list of recommendations for dealing with Ramadhan in a healthy fashion. They deal with common problems encountered in Ramadhan. Dr. Haffejee suggests that in the month of Ramadhan, "our diet should not differ very much from our normal diet and should be as simple as possible." He says that our diet should maintain our normal weight, although he does mention that if one is over-weight, Ramadhan is a good time to shed some pounds. He also recommends foods that last longer. "In view of the long hours of fasting, we should consume slow digesting foods including fibre containing-foods rather than fast-digesting foods. Slow digesting foods last up to 8 hours, while fast-digesting foods last for only 3 to 4 hours," writes Dr. Haffejee.

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20

Taqwa Boy

Ramadan 1425

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Ramadan 1425
Two pious brothers see Waqat lying on the floor near death. Not wanting him to die in his sinful state, they come to his rescue. They drag him to the secret layer underneath the masjid, hoping to resuscitate him using modern sciences.

Taqwa Boy
Seconds later… Realizing modern science cannot save Waqat’s soul from damnation, they settle to use their untested, unfinished, faulty… secret weapon; Codename: Divine Revelation to fill his soul with ilm to counter the blackness in his heart.

21
Later on… Waqat, with his new flashy name, Taqwa Boy, pledges to protect the city with his life from all evil. As power grows on both fronts, the battle between good and evil begins… which side will prevail? Only time will tell.

Some time later… Divine Revelation seemed to have worked, or did it?

Some more time later… With his new found innerself, Waqat secludes himself. His spiritual journey begins. His muscle mass dwindles but his understanding of the world expands, and now his training is close to completion.

22

Eat-Halal

UV NEWS October 2004

updates
Info on cheese at Pizza Pizza Based on information given to eat-halal.com by Pizza Pizza Ltd., the following cheeses used in items at Pizza Pizza are suitable for consumption by Muslims: * Mozzarella Cheese * Goat Cheese * Feta Cheese Items containing the following cheeses should be avoided, as they contain animalderived ingredients: * Cheese blend (X-treme cheese topping) * Parmesan * Cheese used in sandwiches Although we do not recommend eating Halal pizzas from outlets that serve Haram items due to the high risk of cross-contamination, we advise Muslim consumers to ask what type of cheese is used in the item before ordering at Pizza Pizza. >> Pizza Pizza: (416) 236-1894 | Web: pizzapizza.ca Info on Pot of Gold, Bridge Mixture After investigating the ingredients of Hershey Pot of Gold and Bridge Mixture chocolates, eat-halal.com has found that they are both free of animal-derived ingredients. Pot of Gold is a premium collection of chocolates while Bridge Mixture is an assortment of chocolate coated confectionery. >> Hershey: (800) 468-1714 | Web: hersheycanada.com No problem with Polar Capp; Tim Hortons bagel warning According to Nestle, the Polar Capp (iced cappuccino drink) at Country Style is free of animal derivatives as well as alcohol. Following tip-offs from concerned Muslims, eathalal.com contacted Tim Hortons and the company confirmed that the same knives may Claritin free of animal ingredients

~Maulana Sikander Z.

be used to cut meat sandwiches and bagels, as well as the fact that the English Toffee flavoured cappuccino contains trace amounts of alcohol. The knives are supposed to be washed before each use, but there is a possibility that cross-contamination may occur. Muslim consumers are advised to request the knife be washed when placing their order. The issue of trace amounts of alcohol in foods is currently being studied by scholars. >> Country Style: (905) 764-7066 | Web: countrystyle.ca >> Tim Hortons: (888) 601-1616 | Web: timhortons.com

Following an inquiry regarding the allergy-relief medication Claritin, eat-halal.com contacted Schering Canada, the manufacturer of the product. According to a spokesperson, Claritin, in both tablet and syrup form, is free of all animal-derived ingredients in Canada. Claritin is an over-the-counter drug that offers relief from symptoms of seasonal allergies such as sneezing, runny noses, and itchy eyes. >> Schering Canada: (800) 463-5442 No problem with malt extract Following inquiries regarding the ingredient 'malt extract', eat-halal.com has learned that although malt extract sounds like an alcohol-related ingredient, it really isn't. According to eat-halal.com's technical contact, malt extract is "made from barley grain and [the] extracting material is water, so it is a Halal ingredient." Therefore, there is no problem with consuming malt extract. The messenger of Allah, (SAWS) said, “Halal is clear and haram is clear; between the two there are doubtful matters which not many people know. Thus he who avoids doubtful matters clears himself in regard to his religion and his honour, but he who falls into doubtful matters falls into that which is unlawful, like the shepherd who pastures around a sanctuary, all but grazing therein.” ~ Related by Bukhari and Muslim

Eating Halal at School
Eating Halal here in North America can be a challenge for many adults, but it is even more of a challenge for Muslim children.
It's that time of the year again when we begin sending off our little ones to school. While attendance at Islamic schools is slowly and slowly creeping up, the fact of the matter remains that most Muslim children still attend public schools. As someone who has attended public schools here in Canada, I can tell you that making sure our children eat Halal while they're at school is something that requires our attention. If we are to pass on Islamic values such as the importance of eating Halal to our children, we must begin at an early age. In most public elementary schools, parties are usually held and food is brought in every once in a while to celebrate various events such as a teacher or student's birthday, holidays (such as Halloween and Christmas), and other events. The easy way around this situation is to instruct our children not to eat anything at school that they haven't taken from home. However, this can be tough for young children, especially since they'll be seeing their peers enjoying the food and they won't be able to take part in it. One possible solution to this and other similar situations is to sensitize the teacher about Islamic dietary guidelines. This can be done easily with the "Basic Food Guidelines for Muslims" sheet available at www.eat-halal.com/kids.

If that doesn't help, parents can request their child's teacher to tell them of any parRazvi (Raz) Azeez ties beforehand, so that the child can be Home Inspections sent with Halal food for him or herself on the day of the party. 166 Robbinstone Dr. Or as in my case when I was young, par- Scarborough, ON M1B 2E7 ents can simply keep their child home on Bus: 416-609-2082 the day of the party. Fax: 416-609-3946 Muslim children should be instructed not to Toll Free: 1-866-90-HOUSE (46873) buy foods and consumables from school cafeterias and corner stores unless they are www.lighthouseinspections.com sure that it is Halal. It's always best to pack a lunch and snack(s) for our children, so they don't need to look elsewhere for food while they're gone to school. For Framing of Certificates and Children should be discouraged from exchanging and asking for foods from others, Floral Gifts and should be taught to politely refuse food given to them by others, when they're not sure if it's Halal or Haram. It may seem rare that young children would care about Halal and Haram, but I have seen that even the slightest of guidance can make a difference. When my niece was in pre-school, she was once offered some chicken, but she turned it down, saying "no, I only eat Urdu chicken" (Urdu being her term for Zabihah). Delivery of fresh roses are If you already haven't, I strongly encourage you to introduce your child to Halal food our priority! basics with the lessons and activities at www.eat-halal.com/kids.

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