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  6. ÇáÃãà ááå æÇáÕáÇÉ æÇáÓáÇã Úáì ÑÓæá Çááå Õáì Çááå Úáíå æÓáã¡ ÃãÇ ÈÚÃ: I thank Allah (A'za wa Jal) for giving me these moments (through illness) in order for me to answer the requests of many of you who would like to be more informed regarding the asaneed of the major books of Hadith. I had previously touched on this subject in a previous post and in this post I will attempt to provide as many extant auditory asaneed of Imam al-Bukhari's Sahih as I am aware of starting with those that I have obtained through sitting at the feet of these great Ulama. I warmly welcome your contributions to this thread in order to learn from you, but request that any comments or suggestions be directly related to the subject. ÃÃÈÃà ãÓÊÚíäÇð ÈÇááå ÊÚÇáì First of all, it is worthwhile pointing out that even though there are many paths going back to Imam al-Bukhari (RA) the most commonly used and rigorously accepted path is from the greatest Muhaddith of his era; al-Hafidh, al-Hujjah, Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Hajr al-Asqalaani (RA). It has been established to contain the complete audio transmission of al-Jami al-Sahih from the first hadith on Niyyah (Intentions) to the last hadith on the 'two light words' from scholar to scholar all the way back to Imam al-Bukhari (RA). As we can see below, there are 7 people between Ibn Hajr (RA) and Imam al-Bukhari (RA) and even though there are asaneed with fewer intermediaries it remains to be established whether they have complete auditory transmission of the text. Muhammad ibn Isma’il al-Bukhari (194-256 H) Muhammad ibn Yusuf al-Firabri (231-320 H) Abdullah ibn Ahmad al-Sarkhasi (293-381 H) Abd al-Rahman al-Bushanji (374-467 H) Abul Waqt Abd al-Awwal al-Sijzi (458-553 H) Husain ibn Mubarak al-Zubaydi (545-631 H) Ahmad ibn Abi Talib al-Hajjar al-Hafni (624-730 H) Ibrahim ibn Ahmad al-Tanukhi (709-800 H) Ahmad ibn Ali Ibn Hajr al-Asqalaani (774-852 H) Now, that we know that, we simply need to trace the asaneed of our shoyoukh back to Ibn Hajr (RA) and the fewer the number of intermediaries going back to him the more elevated the isnaad. As is tradition amongst Ahlal Athar, I will start with an Isnaad from a teacher of my birthplace and move through different regions of the world that Allah has blessed me to travel to and obtain asaneed from with the intention of preserving the Sunnah and this most unique and salient feature that only Muslims can be proud of as no other religion has a system even similar to it. I start by saying that Allah blessed me with the Taufeeq of sitting at the feet of Shaikh Ahmed Ali Surati (RA) both in England and then in Kuwait and participating in both reading and listening to the complete text of Imam al-Bukhari's Sahih without missing even a single letter and I say Akhbarani: 20) Shaikh Ahmed Ali Surati (RA) 19) Who narrates the complete Sahih from: Abdur Rahman al-Amrohi 18) Who may narrate a part of it from: Fadlur Rahman Ganjmuradabadi 17) Who narrates a part of it from: Shah Abdul Aziz al-Dihlawi 16) Who narrates to Kitab al-Hajj from: Shah WaliUllah al-Dihlawi 15) Who narrates the complete Sahih from Abu Tahir Madani 14) Who narrates the complete Sahih from Hasan Ujaymee 13) Who narrates the complete Sahih from Easa Tha'alabi al-Ja'fri 12) Who narrates the complete Sahih from Ahmed ibn Khaleel Subki 11) Who narrates the complete Sahih from Najm Mohammed al-Gheeti 10) Who narrates the complete Sahih from Zakariyyah al-Ansari 9) Who narrates much of the text from Ibn Hajr al-Asqalaani Which means that between this feeble person and Imam al-Bukhari there are 20 intermediaries which is the highest sanad in the world. Insha Allah, in my next post we will continue this journey throughout the world and until next time, I request you all to continue remembering me in your prayers. For more please click http://cordobaacademy.lefora.com/2012/03/10/worldwide-asaneed-for-al-jami-al-sahih-of-imam-al-/0/
  7. YEMEN Moving to the blessed land of Yemen, I continue this journey looking at the Asaneed that connect us through many of the celebrated Ulama to Imam al-Bukhari and ultimately to the greatest of creation, Sayyiduna wa Habeebuna Mohammed (salahu alayhi wasalam). Allah (Subhana wa Ta'ala) blessed me with the opportunity to study many texts with one of the leading Muhaditheen of Yemen who himself stems from a family of Muhaditheen. Shaikh Mohammed ibn Qasim al-Washali (HA). I am thankful to Allah that he has also granted me a very special connection with Shaikh who I have had the pleasure of hosting as a personal guest for numerous days and I have studied and obtained Ijazah from the Shaikh in the Sahih of Imam al-Bukhari (RA) on more than one occasion after having read/heard the whole text whilst in his company. Shaikh Mohammed ibn Qasim al-Washali narrates back to Ibn Hajr al-Asqalani (RA) through 13 intermediaries and this the Isnaad: He narrates the complete Sahih from Qasim Ismael al-Washali Who narrates the complete Sahih from Ismael Mohammed al-Washali[iI] Who narrates the complete Sahih from Abdur Rahman al-Qudaymee Who narrates the complete Sahih from Abdur Rahman Abdullah al-Ahdal Who narrates the complete Sahih from Abdur Rahman Sulayman al-Ahdal[iII] Who narrates the complete Sahih from Sulayman Yahya al-Ahdal[iV] Who narrates the complete Sahih from Ahmad Muhammed al-Ahdal Who narrates the complete Sahih from Yahya Umar al-Ahdal Who narrates the complete Sahih from Abu Bakr Ali al-Ahdal Who narrates the complete Sahih from Yusuf Batah al-Ahdal Who narrates the complete Sahih from Tahir Husain al-Ahdal[V] Who narrates the complete Sahih from Abdur Rahman Ali al-Zubaidi Who narrates the complete Sahih from Mohammed Abdur Rahmah Sakhawi[VI] Who narrates the complete Sahih from Ibn Hajr al-Asqalani [VII] He narrates through dozens of paths, but this is the most complete in terms of aural transmission. [iI] Three generations of descendants narrating from each other which is very common in Yemen and similar to the family of Shah Waliullah (RA) and Musnid al-Dunya Abdul Hay Kittani (RA). [iII] He is al-Wajih Abdur Rahman ibn Sulayman ibn Yahya ibn Umar ibn Maqbool al-Ahdal (AH). The Umdat (pillar) of Riwayah in Yemen and would be similar in this sense to Shah Wali Ullah in India. [iV] The father of al-Wajih Abdur Rahman (RA). He also read it with other shoyoukh with a similar path to the one we mentioned previously and I will write this path in future postings of Yemeni Ulama. [V] The Ahdal family is known for their piety and service to Hadith as can be seen from this isnad. [VI] What is established is that it was not the whole text, but most of it however this is disputed. [VII] This Isnaad up to Ibn Hajr al-Asqalani (RA) is Musalsal (continuous) with Yemeni narrators apart from Imam al-Sakhawi. Source
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  11. Postponed to start on 15 March because the elderly Shaykh -93 years old- is sick and cannot travel. Duaz please
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  13. A Brief Biography of Shaykh Hasan al-Kattani Shaykh al-Sayyid al-Musnid Mohammed Hasan al-Kattani originates from a family of Muhaditheen and Maliki Ulama that goes back centuries with his lineage traceable to the Prophet Mohammed (Sululahoo alayhi wassalam). He is extremely fortunate to have started memorizing the Quran and Hadith at a very tender as is custom in his family, many of whom were leading scholars of the 20th century of whom the most famous were Shaykh Abdul Hayy al-Kattani, Shaykh Mohammedd ibn Jafar al-Kattani, Shaykh Muntasir Kattani, Shaykh Mohammed Baqir Kattani (May Allah have mercy on them). Shaykh Hasan continues this tradition of Islamic scholarship well into the 21st century by the regular classes that he gives to students in Morocco. Amongst the dozens of scholars that he has studied and received Ijazah (authorization) from are: Shaykh Abdul Qadir al-Arnauat, Shaykh Abdul Aziz ibn Siddeeq al-Ghumari, Shaykh Abdul Hay ibn Siddeeq al-Ghumari, Shaykh Abdullah ibn Siddeeq al-Ghumari, Shaykh Mohammed Muntasir al-Kattani, Shaykha Nafisa al-Kattaniyyah, Shaykh Mohammed Tayyib al-Kattani, Shaykh Mohammed Bu Khubza. Shaykh has also studied and graduated from universities in Morocco and Jordan and holds a Master's Degree in combined Fiqh and Usool. He is a prolific author and has written in various fields including Maliki and Dhahiri Fiqh, Islamic Politics, Fiqh al-Hadith, Usool al-Hadith and Biographies of the Sahabah. Shaykh has been invited to teach in many countries around the world including Switzerland, Australia, North America, Canada, Malaysia, Singapore, Tunisia and Qatar as well as meeting Ulama and studying in Jordan, Syria, Saudi Arabia, Algeria, Pakistan and Morocco where he currently resides with his family. We are greatly honoured to have Shaykh Hasan (May Allah preserve him) dedicating his precious time to Cordoba Academy and its students and warmly welcome him.
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  15. Starts tomorrow great chance for all sisters
  16. Only a few days left before this free course starts so don't miss out.
  17. His answer was. As salam mu alaikum wa rahmat Ullah wa barakataHu I have decided to divide my answer to this question in at least two posts in order to make it easier upon the reader to contemplate the contents of it. As always, I also welcome discussion from those noble students that particpate on this forum. I ask Allah to increase you in your desire to remain on the ‘straight path’ and make your journey on this path easy and clear for you. What probably causes you to ask this question is a trait that has all, but become lost in secular societies, but remains strong amongst Muslims, known commonly as gheerah. (chaste-jealousy) In order for me to answer this question and address the specifics of it, I would need to know more information about the nature of these lectures and how they are to be conducted as well as other information that will come in the context of my answer. As this information is not available to me now, my answer will provide general guidelines about the topic. First of all, I would like to provide you with a non exhaustive list of the vices that occur when such lectures are conducted to a mixed gender audience. The female lecturer speaks softly, tells jokes and even laughs during her lectures. Where is she from these verses of the Quran in Surah al-Ahzab which do not require much explanation as they are quite clear? "If you fear Allah then do not be soft in speech [to men], lest he in whose heart is disease should be moved to desire [you], but speak with appropriate speech. And abide in your houses and do not display yourselves as [was] the display of the former times of ignorance." (33:32) The female lecturer does not adhere to the principles of Islamic Hijaab by either not wearing a Hijab or by wearing a Hijab that adorns her and causes a person to stare, worst still she wears make-up. For an example of this, one simply needs to look at the Islamic satellite channels or al-Jazeera news channel where the women cover their heads with vibrant fashionable scarfs and wear make up as if they are going to their marriage ceremony, not read the stories of the day to viewers The gathering causes for the free-mixing of genders. It goes without saying, that if a Muslim female lecturer is talking on an Islamic subject the likelihood of women attending the lecture is very high and if men are also invited there is a huge potential risk that free-mixing will occur. More often than not, and based on my extensive experience of traveling to conferences, good preparations ensuring the segregation of sexes to a reasonable degree are not made. This leads us to find that men and women are sitting beside each other, large groups of men and women are entering and exiting through the same doors sometimes in such a hurry to obtain a good seat etcetera that they even make physical contact. Further to that, and in the interest of covering the expenses of bringing this lecturer, no dress code is advertised on the promotional materials or even enforced at the event. This results in a many brothers and sisters -that suffer from a lack of hayah- attending and wearing make-up, jewelry and clothing that is not permissible for them to be wearing other than in front people of the same gender and nothing is said about it, but rather it has been said that, "You should have a Hijab in your heart" The female lecturer wears clothing that shows the contours of the body or while she gives the lecture bends into positions that are not synonymous with the concept of hayah in Islam. Again while attending a Muslim training conference in New York, none of the attendees found it in the least deplorable that the female Muslim lecturer was clearly displaying her cleavage and when I objected to this, I was looked upon as if I was strange or an extremist. (Subhan Allah) The female lecturer commits actions or talks on subjects that would be contrary to the norms of hayah (modesty) required of all Muslims leading to temptation. An example of this occurred with me during a conference that I was invited to for Muslim youth when a well-known American-Egyptian woman started to talk about condoms in front of hundreds of Muslim attendees which I was absolutely disgusted by and will never forget in my life. The young female lecturer traverses distances that exceed those permitted for a believing woman to travel when there is no urgent need for her to do so. It has been narrated in numerous authentic Ahadith that it is not permissible for a woman to travel Narrated Abu Huraira (may Allah be pleased with him) the Messenger of Allah (salahu alayhi wasalam) said: "It is unlawful for a woman who believes in Allah and the last day that she travels the distance of one day and one night without a Mahram accompanying her." (al-Bukhari) Narrated Abdullah ibn Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) the Messenger of Allah (salahu alayhi wasalam) said: "A woman must not travel for three days except with a Mahram." (Agreed Upon) Now, none of the Fuqaha deem as urgent traveling to give lectures, but rather that it is mainly for those actions that are related to the preservation of life such as for some medical treatment, escaping from a war zone and the performance of Hajj, the last of which contains much difference of opinion amongst the scholars depending on the madhab that one adheres to. If they have differed in regards to fulfilling one of the five fundamental pillars of Islam, then it goes without saying that it remains unlawful for a woman to travel even if she is to give Islamic lectures. The nature of a lecture requires that eye contact be maintained with the audience As an accomplished public speaker that has received training from numerous organizations, I am fully aware of the role that eye contact has in engaging the audience and delivering a successful lecture. When one delivers a lecture to a mixed-gender audience it becomes very challenging not only for the speaker to not keep eye contact with the audience, but also for the audience not to look at the speaker. If one were to say, 'you don't have to look at the speaker if you don't want to', that would be rather nonsensical because it is well known in communication that a varying percentage of what is being communicated is not only in the audio that one hears, but also in the gesticulation of the speaker which in public speaking carries a more emphasized role. Furthermore, if organizers insisted that men should not look at the speaker then wouldn't it be rational for them not to be put into this scenario in the first place? We should also be aware that looking at the opposite gender whether we have a reason for it or not has its affect on the human heart and this is why Allah mentions it first when commanding us to guard our private parts. قُل لِّلْمُؤْمِنِينَ يَغُضُّوا مِنْ أَبْصَارِهِمْ وَيَحْفَظُوا فُرُوجَهُمْ ذَلِكَ أَزْكَى لَهُمْ إِنَّ اللَّهَ خَبِيرٌ بِمَا يَصْنَعُونَ Tell the believing men to lower their gaze and guard their private parts. That is purer for them. Indeed, Allah is Acquainted with what they do. And tell the believing women to lower their gaze and guard their private parts and not expose their adornment… (24:30-31) The effect it contains can very easily be translated into bad thoughts because the human self is weak, add to that the effects of today's society where sexuality is accentuated and licentiousness is rampant and you have a recipe for disaster. Our Beloved (salahu alayhi wsalam) said very clearly in a Hadith that occurs in the Sahihayn (Bukhari and Muslim): إِنَّ اللَّهَ كَتَبَ عَلَى ابْنِ آدَمَ حَظَّهُ مِنَ الزِّنَا ، أَدْرَكَ ذَلِكَ لَا مَحَالَةَ ، فَزِنَا الْعَيْنَيْنِ النَّظَرُ ، وَزِنَا اللِّسَانِ النُّطْقُ وَالنَّفْسُ تَمَنَّى وَتَشْتَهِي ، وَالْفَرْجُ يُصَدِّقُ ذَلِكَ أَوْ يُكَذِّبُهُ "Allah has written upon the son of Adam is portion from Zinah (fornication) from which there is no escape. The zinah of the eyes is to look, the zinah of the tongue is to speak, the self wishes and desires and the private parts either actualize it or deny it" Allah the creator of both men and women is fully aware of what is in the hearts and even if one 'pious' Muslim were to say that I do not feel any danger of temptation, what about the rest of the audience, it cannot be guaranteed that they will not feel anything. Furthermore, what about the non-yet Muslims males who may be watching this lecture on the net; how many times have we come across immoral comments about our Muslim sisters online? My advice to honourable sisters who genuinely want to help the deen, not gain facebook fans As our deen is Nasiha, I feel that my answer on this topic would be incomplete if I do not offer some at this juncture. I would like to offer all sisters the advice that they should contemplate their actions and search for and weigh the positives and negative elements of what they are doing in lecturing men. Looking at Muslim population statistics, the number of women in the Ummah is more than that of men and therefore the need for sisters is great. I recommend that sisters should specialize in issues that their fellow sisters would feel more comfortable discussing with them as there is a genuine need for this in the Ummah and leave the lecturing of men to the same gender. This would be a far more effective use of human resources in the Ummah. My advice to the organizers of these events who seek to please Allah alone. Organizers of events that seek to get people to practice their deen ultimately pleasing Allah in the process must ask themselves one golden question. Who is it that gives guidance to these people so that they are able to make the life changing decisions after listening to the lectures? Should the answer be Allah, then does it not follow that Allah is the One that puts barakah into our efforts and in order for him to do that, we need to act in complete and unquestionable accordance to the guidelines that He has set out for us. My advice to brothers that are intending to attend a lecture conducted by a female lecturer Ask yourselves what is the goal of your attending this lecture? Is it to gain proximity to Allah and increase your Imaan or is it for some other reason? While your are attending this lecture, is your heart undividedly attached to what is being said in a similar way to if you were attending a lecture conducted by a male lecturer or are you being distracted? وَإِذَا سَأَلْتُمُوهُنَّ مَتَاعًا فَاسْأَلُوهُنَّ مِن وَرَاء حِجَابٍ ذَلِكُمْ أَطْهَرُ لِقُلُوبِكُمْ وَقُلُوبِهِنَّ And when you ask [his wives] for something, ask them from behind a partition. That is purer for your hearts and their hearts. (33:53) It would be sheer sophistry to deny that women have an innate allure to any sane heterosexual man and that just because a woman is talking about love in Islam as opposed to love in general or any other subject for that matter, that those present would not be tempted by her soft speech, humour or even the idealistic notion that she is trying to convey setting their imaginations off in all directions. In ending, I would like to say that if one studies the books of Usool and the Maqasid (purposes) behind the prohibitions of actions they realize that there are many actions that have been deemed Haraam even though they may contain some apparent benefit in them. The scholars have said that this is because people vary in their level of susceptibility to these things and so the prohibition encompasses everyone. I feel that this sort of activity for which I cannot find any pressing need in the Ummah to justify its dispensation, nor am I convinced will contain more good than bad, is not to be condoned and depending on the frequency of the factors above is either severely disliked or completely prohibited. Finally, those of you whom have studied with me, know that I am always encouraging female scholarship in Islam by giving examples of great female scholars of the past in the hope that I can motivate my sisters to be more perceptive in their pursuit of the Sacred Sciences, so let not any person say that I am stepping on women's rights or anything of the sort. And Allah knows best Servant of Allah Mohammed Daniel To follow the discussion click here
  18. CORDOBA ACADEMY gladly announces the launch of its latest 5-week online Ijazah course Introduction to Principles of Hadith Terminology “Imam al-Bayquni’s Poem” Only $64 With the esteemed mentor Shaykh Mohammed Daniel Sunday 17 February 10:00 PM (Makkah Time) To request more information or to register your place, please email cordobaacademy[at]gmail.com Forum.CordobaAcademy.com
  19. Starts this week so don't miss out
  20. Cordoba Academy gladly announces the launch of its latest 12-week intensive online Ijazah course The Sublime Qualities of the Prophet Muhammad (AS) “al-Shama'il al-Muhammadiyyah” $149 With the esteemed mentor Shaykh Khabaab Ahmed Every Friday and Saturday Starting 15 February and continuing for 12 weeks from 2-4 AM (Makkah Time) To request more information or to register your place, please apply through the website or email cordobaacademy[at]gmail.com Forum.CordobaAcademy.com
  21. Exactly the point. Who was more pious us or them?
  22. الحمد لله والصلاة والسلام على نبينا محمد وعلى آله وصحبه وبعد : As salam mu alaikum wa rahmat Ullah wa barakataHu I have read the fatwa that you have posted by the Grand Mufti of Egypt Ali Gomaa informing that one may celebrate Christmas with their non-Muslim family and is very sad that such an erudite scholar should commit such a mistake which is completely contrary to the scholars of the Shafi Madhab (School of Thought) that he follows as well as the consensus of the Ulama in this regard. The great Imam of al-Madinah Imam Malik (RA) famously said, "Every person can be taken from and rejected, except the person who occupies this blessed grave." He was pointing at the blessed grave of our Beloved (salahu alayhi wasalam). This is a clear indication that infallibility in regards the rules surrounding how we practice our deen is only possessed by the Apostle of Allah (salahu alayhi wasalam) and that anyone after him no matter their level of knowledge or position in the Ummah can make mistakes and these mistakes should be rejected. There will no doubt be people who call themselves Muslims, but have the characteristics of hypocrites who will jump on and promote the ruling of Mufti Gomaa in the same way that they did when the now deceased Mufti of Azhar (may Allah forgive him) made comments stating that the Niqab was 'nothing but cultural' which was vehemently refuted by scholars worldwide with proofs from the sacred works. The ruling of Mufti Gomaa contains many flaws that I will look to point out in the future as I do not have time now owing to the pressing issues of assisting fleeing relatives in Damascus. Nevertheless, with only a few days left before the season of Christmas, I feel that it is urgent to address this matter even if I am unable to write at length. I will only list a few of the proofs in this regard and then I will provide some practical advice for those that may find themselves in such situations. Proofs that a Muslim cannot attend and participate in non-Muslim holy days. PROOF ONE وَالَّذِينَ لَا يَشْهَدُونَ الزُّورَ وَإِذَا مَرُّوا بِاللَّغْوِ مَرُّوا كِرَامًا And [know that servants of God are only] those who never bear witness to falsehood, and [who], whenever they pass by [people engaged in] frivolity, pass on with dignity. (25:72( This verse is clearly stating that the servants of Allah are those who do not bear witness to those things that are false let alone sit and participate in them. Christians themselves do not have a consensus on when Jesus was born and many of them only celebrate it on December 25th because that is what the majority today are doing with some of them claiming that it is a false date that was fixed in line with pagan holidays. Furthermore, if we were to agree with Mufti Gomaa that the date is accurate how did the most erudite scholars of Tafseer (Quranic exegesis) understand this verse? To find out, any student of knowledge can open the books of Tafseer and they will find the following: Tafseer of Imam al-Baghawi (RA) The pre-eminent exegete Mujahid said that الزور which is translated above as falsehood means the festivals of the Mushrikeen. Tafseer of Imam al-Qurtobi (RA( He states: "…And according to one opinion of Ibn Abbas it is the festivals of the mushrikeen." Tafseer of Ibn Katheer (RA) Ibn Kathir states: "And Abu al-Aliyah, Tawoos, Mohammed ibn Sireen, Dahaak, Rabi ibn Anas and others have said that it is the festivals of the mushrikeen." Interestingly, further on he states: … "And Imam Malik narrates from Zuhri that is the consumption of alcohol. They do not attend to it nor do they desire it as has come in the Hadith, "Whoever believes in Allah and the Last day must not sit on the dinner cloth wherein alcohol is given out” So we ask our Mufti who said, "Therefore, participate in your friends and family's celebrations, eat with them and refrain from eating pork and drinking alcohol with tact and civility" where is he from this statement of Imam Malik and even more importantly the authentic hadith above clearly prohibiting sitting at places were alcohol is given out. If we listen to him, we would be sitting timidly with 'tact and civility' while our 'friends' contravene Allah's laws in celebration. PROOF TWO There is no doubt that the origin of Christmas is that of a religious holiday, irrespective if a person chooses to celebrate it as a custom or as part of their new found patriotism. If you observe it you are clearly imitating/resembling the non Muslims and so you will come under the following authentic hadith that can be found in many collections including the Sunan of Abi Dawood: مَنْ تَشَبَّهَ بِقَوْمٍ فَهُوَ مِنْهُمْ "Whoever imitates a nation is from them" This hadith was understood well by the great Sahabi Abdullah ibn Amr ibn al-Aas as collected by Imam al-Bayhaqi with an authentic chain when he said: "Whosoever lives in the lands of the non Arabs and celebrates their Neyrouz and festivals and keeps imitating them until he dies in that condition, will be resurrected with them on the Day of Resurrection." Now, earlier I mentioned that Mufti Ali Gomaa has gone against the rulings of scholars in his own madhab and here it is worthwhile pointing out the statement of one of greatest Fuqaha of the Shafi madhab. Ibn Hajr al-Haythami al-Shafi'ee (RA) in his Fatawa collection has stated the following: Then I saw that some of our later Imams have stated that which agrees with what I stated: And from the most despicable of innovations is the acceptance of Muslims in regards to the holidays of the Christians by imitating them in their foods and giving and accepting gifts and those that mainly observe this are the Egyptians. The Apostle of Allah has said, "Whoever imitates a nation is from them… " Subhan Allah, so it is clear to everyone that this imitating is nothing new because he passed away approximately 500 years ago. What is even clearer is that even he suffered from the Egyptians in this regard so it is not something that we are facing in the 21st century. PROOF THREE The Prophet's (salahu alayhi wasalam) deep rooted desire to contradict the Christians and Jews in everything they did so that he left a distinct example for us to imitate instead of us imitating the non-Muslims. Anyone who studies the books of Hadith and Seerah knows that there are many matters like this. In an authentic hadith that can be found in the Musnad of Imam Ahmed and other books we come across the following hadith which clearly shows us what our Beloved would do on the days in which the non-Muslims were celebrating. Umm Salamah (RA) says the Prophet (salahu alayhi wasalam) would fast Saturday and Sunday more than he would fast any other day and he would say, "These two days are the holy days of the mushrikeen and I love to be dissimilar to them." This trait of the Prophet (salahu alayhi wasalam) was so clear that even the Jews of that time knew it well and they famously said, "This man does not want to leave anything except that he wants to be dissimilar to us." (Sahih Muslim Kitab al-Hayd) These three proofs suffice to show those who are genuinely seeking the truth that the celebration of Christmas is haraam and this is the agreement of the four schools of thought as I will prove in a future article. PERSONAL ADVICE TO ALL STUDENTS FROM LIFE EXPERIENCE I am aware that most students of Cordoba Academy live in countries in which Muslims are the minority such as the United States, Europe and Australia and it is inevitable that you will come into contact with people who are celebrating Christmas. There are also many of you who have non-Muslim family members (as I do) and it is very important you demonstrate to them the warmth of Islam as well as ensuring their rights over you as kin. I feel that it is only right for me to offer some advice from my own life experience that I believe you may find beneficial in your interactions. I have based the below advice on principles in the Quran and Sunnah, but for brevity have not mentioned every proof otherwise it would become cumbersome upon the reader. If you have Christian parents/family. وَوَصَّيْنَا الْإِنسَانَ بِوَالِدَيْهِ حَمَلَتْهُ أُمُّهُ وَهْنًا عَلَى وَهْنٍ وَفِصَالُهُ فِي عَامَيْنِ أَنِ اشْكُرْ لِي وَلِوَالِدَيْكَ إِلَيَّ الْمَصِيرُ وَإِن جَاهَدَاكَ عَلى أَن تُشْرِكَ بِي مَا لَيْسَ لَكَ بِهِ عِلْمٌ فَلَا تُطِعْهُمَا وَصَاحِبْهُمَا فِي الدُّنْيَا مَعْرُوفًا وَاتَّبِعْ سَبِيلَ مَنْ أَنَابَ إِلَيَّ ثُمَّ إِلَيَّ مَرْجِعُكُمْ فَأُنَبِّئُكُم بِمَا كُنتُمْ تَعْمَلُونَ And We have enjoined upon man [care] for his parents. His mother carried him, [increasing her] in weakness upon weakness, and his weaning is in two years. Be grateful to Me and to your parents; to Me is the [final] destination. Yet should they endeavour to make thee ascribe divinity, side by side with Me, to something which thy mind cannot accept [as divine], obey them not; but [even then] bear them company in this world’s life with kindness, and follow the path of those who turn towards Me. In the end, unto Me you all must return; and thereupon I shall make you [truly] understand all that you were doing [in life] (31:14-15) Not a day should go by you in which you are neglectful of the need for your family to enter Jannah and the only way bridge between them and Jannah, contrary to what Perennialists say, is Islam. Whether or not your parents are Muslim, you must always exercise impeccable manners towards them and treat them with kindness maintaining a good relationship with them as made clearer by our beloved (salahu alayhi wasalam) in the authentic hadith. If your parents invite you to partake of their Christmas meal, then you should in the most kind of ways decline the invitation and tell them that you would be happy to invite them to your house or a restaurant for dinner or even eat at their house provided that it has no affiliation to the celebration of Christmas. Christmas is the celebration of the birth of Jesus who Christians believe was God incarnate or was the begotten son of God (audhobillah) etcetera If you participate with them, you will be in clear contradiction of the verse mentioned above. If you have Christian neighbours Your neighbours, whether they are Muslim or not have a great right upon you and this is demonstrated by the authentic hadith of the Prophet which is rigorously authentic coming in the Sahih of Imam al-Bukhari and Imam Muslim: "Jibreel (the Archangel) kept advocating me regarding treating neighbours with kindness until I began to think thought he would allocate for them a share of deceased’s inheritance". If anyone should claim that this is only for the Muslim neighbour, then we would say is their understanding of the deen better than that of Imam al-Bukhari and the Sahabah? Imam al-Bukhari (RA) in his wonderful text al-Adab al-Mufrad under the chapter related to the rights of neighbours brings as the last hadith in this chapter the following authentic hadith that can be found in the Sunan collections of Imam Abu Dawood and al-Tirmidhi. Imam Mujahid (RA) said, "I was with Abdullah ibn Amr while his bondsman was skinning a sheep. He then said to him a few times. Oh boy! Once you are done (skinning), start with our Jewish neighbour.' A man there said surprisingly, 'Jewish? May Allah correct you!' Abdullah ibn Amr replied, 'I heard the Apostle of Allah, (salahu alayhi wasalam) advocating that we treat our neighbours well until we began to think he would order us to make them our heirs." If your neighbour should send you a Christmas card in the post as is tradition, then do not send it back to them or worse still, tear it up and throw it in a communal area for all to see. Put it aside and dispose of it in a discrete way so that you neighbor does not see it and become sad at your actions possibly causing him to hate Muslims and Islam. And as it is not permissible for a Muslim to cooperate with non Muslims in their celebrations of faith as is agreed by the four schools, it would not be permissible for you to send them a card back as this would mean that you are supporting and accepting their false beliefs. My advice would be to wait a few days after Christmas has subsided so that the gift is not regarded as a Christmas gift and buy them a small gift which you should give them with the sole intention of making their hearts inclined to Islam and returning good with that which is good. (see Holy Quran 55:60) In some circumstances best left to your judgment, it may be possible to include in the gift a leaflet on the significance Jesus (Alayhis salam) plays in the life of Muslims. Greeting you with sentences such as Merry Christmas If your neighbour should greet you with a greeting that is specific to their religious holiday, you should not reply to them using words related to their religion nor should you ever ignore them as this would definitely hurt their feelings. Instead return their greeting with that which is better (see Holy Quran 4:86) and say something like, may God bless you and Jesus Christ or may God give you a prosperous year. In reality, you are making dua for that person because if Allah wanted to bless and give them a prosperous year, he would bless them with Hidayah (guidance). One of my Indian Shoyoukh told me that in the early twentieth century Hindus and Sikhs would actually prefer to live next to a Muslim because of the etiquette that they saw of their Muslim neighbors who would not disturb them with noisy music, gossip, drunkenness, parties and the like. How beautiful is it if we could return to this and let our non-Muslim brothers/sisters in humanity see the unique and peaceful teachings of Islam. If you have a Christian wife Many revert male Muslims when they enter Islam remain in marital relationships with women who are Christian which is understandable, especially if there are children in the equation. Sadly, many Muslims are happy with the status quo of being able to have a marital life with Christian women and they forget that if they have true feelings for this person, they should wish that they be in the company of this person in Paradise in the life hereafter. My advice to them is to use the Christmas holiday as an opportunity to discuss the significance of Jesus in Islam and to inform one’s wife about the true origins of Christmas. It is best if you take a holiday away from your home town where you can spend some quality time with her and the family. This helps immensely in staying away from any tricky situations with your family during this period and it will also keep your wife away from actions that are Haraam such as her possible consumption of alcohol, pork, singing and dancing with strange men and other actions of vice. However, if your wife insists that she wants to go to her family and you have no recourse, then you cannot compel her to stay with you as Allah has forbidden any coercion in practicing Islam as mentioned in Surah al-Baqarah: لاَ إِكْرَاهَ فِي الدِّينِ قَد تَّبَيَّنَ الرُّشْدُ مِنَ الْغَيِّ “There shall be no coercion in matters of faith. The right direction is henceforth distinct from error.” (2:256) If you have Christian employees In order to show your employees Islam’s mercy and tolerance towards other religions one should afford them with flexibility around their holy days with the inner intention of dawah. This is because we know that the Prophet (salahu alayhi wasalam) guaranteed the rights of the Jews and Christians to worship so we should follow his example and not become an obstacle for them so that they should despise us. Even better, is to treat them with Ihsaan and give them a day off as many of them may only find this time in the year to spend with their extended family. Imagine the great dawah effect it would have if while they were gathered with their extended family, they praised and thanked their Muslim boss for his/her generosity towards them. People in marketing know, that the best form of advertising is 'word of mouth'. I end with saying that we must always be alert as to the way our actions are perceived by those around us and treat everyone with the best of character, however this does not mean that we become excessively flexible to the extent that we completely forego the authentic practices of over a millennium of sacred tradition and scholarship that we have inherited from our teachers. Do we think that we are the first Muslims to ever live with Christians or Jews? Or the first people to become Muslim and have non Muslim relatives? No, we have been doing so since the days of our Beloved (salahu alayhi wasalam) and yet we do not find a single Sahabi, Tabi'ee or those that followed them for hundreds of years who went and celebrated Christmas with them because it was the 'birthday of Jesus' and they felt the need to be closer to Jesus (alayhis salam) and further from the Sunnah of Mohammed (salahu alayhi wasalam) This and what I have had taufeeq in saying is from Allah alone, and what is from mistakes, oversights and forgetfulness is from me and Shaytaan the accursed; Allah and his Rasul are free from them. I seek refuge in Allah in being a bridge utilised by others to enter Jannah, and then being thrown into the fire; thereafter I seek refuge in Allah from reminding others of this and forgetting myself. Servant of Allah Mohammed Daniel Cordoba Academy Source Note: This article and everything that has been written by Shaykh Mohammed Daniel on this forum or anywhere else may be copied and used anywhere for educational and non commercial purposes only. Rather we encourage you to use all halaal means to spread the truth to everyone you can.