18: Marriage & Good Character – Renewal by the Book: Quran Tafsir Based on Imam Ghazali’s Ihya – Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

In this lesson, Shaykh Faraz Rabbani, gives an overview of select verses from the Quran that correspond with the chapter son marriage and good character from Imam Al-Ghazali’s Ihya. The two chapter have been enjoined in one lesson because marriage is highly dependent on good character. The lesson will overview the verse 20-21 from Chapter 30 of the Quran on the purposes of marriage.

وَمِنْ آيَاتِهِ أَنْ خَلَقَكُم مِّن تُرَابٍ ثُمَّ إِذَا أَنتُم بَشَرٌ تَنتَشِرُونَ
وَمِنْ آيَاتِهِ أَنْ خَلَقَ لَكُم مِّنْ أَنفُسِكُمْ أَزْوَاجًا لِّتَسْكُنُوا إِلَيْهَا وَجَعَلَ بَيْنَكُم مَّوَدَّةً وَرَحْمَةً ۚ إِنَّ فِي ذَٰلِكَ لَآيَاتٍ لِّقَوْمٍ يَتَفَكَّرُونَ

And of His signs is that He created you from dust; then, suddenly you were human beings dispersing [throughout the earth].
And of His signs is that He created for you from yourselves mates that you may find tranquillity in them; and He placed between you affection and mercy. Indeed in that are signs for a people who give thought. [Quran, 3:20-21]
Marriage is not just a sign of Allah but it contains within it numerous signs of Allah. The purpose of marriage is thus is a means to Allah. However, one must be careful because through marriage one can either draw closer to Allah with their spouse or further away by busying themselves with worldly matters that pull them away from Allah. In addition, marriage is a sign of Allah because He places in it the serenity, caring love and mercy that is needed for the marriage to function and are all gifts from Allah.

Shaykh Faraz explains that there is also a general meaning to the verse above, that is not specific to spouses but rather applies to all human relations and that is the mercy and deep care that allows for human interactions to be sustained; this is one of the signs of Allah. The mercy and deep care spoken about in the verse were integral to the Prophetic Character that we are all encouraged to emulate. As such, at the heart of a good marriage and knowing how to interact with others is good character.

وَإِنَّكَ لَعَلَىٰ خُلُقٍ عَظِيمٍ

“And truly you are upon tremendous character” [Quran, 68:4]

One’s character is most manifest in their choices, particularly the difficult ones. Good character also requires a higher purpose and that is to respond for Allah.

In this series Shaykh Faraz, and the other scholars and teachers will be looking at points of reflection from key verses in the Quran. The series will follow the thematic order of Imam Ghazali’s Ihya Ulum al-Din (Renewing the Religious Sciences). The aim is to connect the key verses of guidance from the Book of Allah with the blueprint of renewal, the Ihya, so that we experience a renewal by The Book.

Join our Ramadan 2017 program: #RamadanRenewal, in-person at SeekersGuidance Toronto or online through the SeekersGuidance Global platform. For more details, visit: http://seekershub.org/ramadan2017.

Checkout all of the SeekersGuidance podcasts by visiting https://seekersguidance.org/podcasts/

12: Etiquettes of Marriage – Renewing Religion: An Overview of Ghazali’s Ihya – Shaykh Riad Saloojee

In this lesson, visiting scholar, Shaykh Riad Saloojee, gives an overview of the Chapter on the Etiquettes of Marriage by Imam Ghazali. Shaykh Riad delves into the spiritual meanings that can be observed during marriage.

Shaykh Riad begins with a beautiful quote that sums up the lesson “two bodies cannot connect in the same way that two souls can”. There are many material benefits to being married, but the real meaning is the connection of our hearts to Allah through it. However, before we come to marriage we need to have an understanding of ourselves. In addition, one should be aware not only of their spiritual self but of their nafs (lower self) as well, to understand my wants and needs in relations to that. Lastly, Imam Ghazali also speaks in the chapter about the fiqh of marriage which is important to learn prior to.

There are three main verses of the Quran that the Prophet, peace be upon him, referenced in relations to marriage. All of these verses begin with “oh you who believe” or “oh people have consciousness (taqwa) of Allah”; that is to say that God consciousness is at the centre of any successful marriage and in the dealings between the couple. Conversely, as well, marriage is a way for one to attain greater God consciousness (taqwa).

Shaykh Riad reminds us to take marriage as a field of training for my character, one that exposes a person to their faults and shortcomings. As such, it is a great way for one to also grow their character and address their mistakes.

Lastly, Shaykh Riad concludes with a reflection on thankfulness and Allah’s promise to increase one if they are thankful; Ramadan is a great time to be thankful and to use the bounties Allah gives us in a way that pleases him. Thus, while fasting, one should be grateful for their spouse, their children and for the love they are blessed with.

In this brief overview of Imam Ghazali’s opus magnum, Ihya Ulum al-Din (Renewing the Religious Sciences), this series will serve as blueprint for how the believer can bring to life their religion. It will aim to help the believer to not just practice the form of the religion properly, but to also practice it with excellence.

Join our Ramadan 2017 program: #RamadanRenewal, in-person at SeekersGuidance Toronto or online through the SeekersGuidance Global platform. For more details, visit: http://seekershub.org/ramadan2017.

Checkout all of the SeekersGuidance podcasts by visiting https://seekersguidance.org/podcasts/

Why Are We Muslim? – Preserving Faith in Testing Times – Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Have you asked yourself why you are Muslim? Is Islam an identity? How can our faith be preserved in testing time?

In this Friday khutba, Shaykh Faraz Rabbani explains how faith is the fuel of religion. Muslims should be be clear about why they are Muslim, and then nurture that in their children. Shaykh Faraz clarifies that we are not Muslim just because we follow the religion of Islam. That is just what the implications of being Muslim are.

The Quran and Sunna of the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessing be upon him) actively call us to think, reflect and understand. We need to ask ourselves: what does Allah represent in my life? What does the Messenger of Allah represent in our life? What does the Quran reflect in my life?

The resulting quality of this reflection is gratitude. Gratitude is the driver of lasting benefit. We are Muslim because we are grateful to our Creator, Sustainer and Benefactor. We are Muslim because we believe in Allah.

This Islam that is fuelled by faith, stands the test of adversities. As opposed to Islam that is just based on identity which withers when tested.

Shaykh Faraz calls us to nurture our strength of faith by not just going through the motions of religion. Rather, we should make every action and act of faith: “Know that your prayer is an act of faith. Know that your fasting is an act of faith. Know that your charity is an act of faith. Know that sticking to the halal and avoiding the haram is an act of faith. Know that visiting your parents is an act of faith. Know that your being involved in the community, your social activism, your political activism, your maintaining ties with family and friends all of it is an act of faith.”

Before any action the believer should turn their heart to Allah. They should ask: what does Allah seek from me? Don’t just focus on the action. Focus first on Allah. If you do that, nothing will harm you.

The Prophet (peace and blessing be upon him said): “If you ask, ask from Allah. If you rely, rely upon Allah.” Religion is about Allah Most High alone.

This Friday khutba was delivered by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani in February 2017 at the the International Muslim Organization of Toronto (IMO).

Cover photo by alankrita singh.

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Why Married Couples Struggle and How to Respond Successfully

Why Married Couples Struggle and How to Respond Successfully. A Muslim Perspective from Ustadha Shireen Ahmed & Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

The closest relationship a person will ever experience in their lifetime is with their spouse. In this SeekersHub seminar, we learn how to cultivate this union to the fullest, how to overcome common hurdles, and how to maintain a high degree of moral conduct and excellent character.

For more info and FREE registration for our upcoming seminars – wherever you are in the world, visit SeekersHub Toronto.

Cover photo by Azlan DuPree.

What Is The Purpose Of Marriage? A Muslim Perspective from Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

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What Is The Purpose Of Marriage? A Muslim Perspective from Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

The closest relationship a person will ever experience in their lifetime is with their spouse. In this SeekersHub seminar, we learn how to cultivate this union to the fullest, how to overcome common hurdles, and how to maintain a high degree of moral conduct and excellent character.

For more info and FREE registration for our upcoming seminars – wherever you are in the world, visit SeekersHub Toronto.

Cover photo by Azlan DuPree.

Successful Marriage: Keys from the Prophet Muhammad’s Sunnah ﷺ, by Habib Hussein as-Saqqaf

This talk on marriage by Habib Hussein as-Saqqaf is probably one of the finest we have heard on the subject in a long, long time.

The closest relationship a person will ever experience in their lifetime is with their spouse. In this SeekersHub seminar, we learn how to cultivate this union to the fullest, how to overcome common hurdles, and how to maintain a high degree of moral conduct and excellent character.

For more info and FREE registration for our upcoming seminars – wherever you are in the world, visit SeekersHub Toronto.

Cover photo by Azlan DuPree.

Listen Attentively The Way The Prophet Did (30 Deeds, 30 Days), by Shaykh Walead Mosaad

Listen Attentively The Way The Prophet Did, by Shaykh Walead Mosaad

30 Days, 30 Deeds
Sacred Acts to Transform the Heart

Every night, our scholars in residence explore one simple deed that could have far reaching spiritual impact on our lives – and the lives of others. Every day we’ll make the intention to put that teaching into practice. Whether it’s forgiving someone who’s wronged us or putting service to others at the top of our list of priorities, these powerful lessons will remind us of the great gift the Prophet ﷺ‎  gave us: the best of character.

Daily at 8:10 pm EST. Attend in person at SeekersHub Toronto or watch live.

 

Let’s #GiveLight to Millions More

We envision a world in which no one is cut off from the beauty, mercy and light of the Prophetic ﷺ example. A world where the dark ideology of a few is dwarfed by radiant example of the many who follow the way of the Prophet ﷺ. But we can’t do it alone. We need your support. This Ramadan, we need you to help us #GiveLight to millions more. Here’s how.

 

Photo credit: Matthew G

Say I Love You And Say Why (30 Days, 30 Deeds), by Shaykh Muhammad Adeyinka Mendes

Say I Love You And Say Why (30 Days, 30 Deeds), by Shaykh Muhammad Adeyinka Mendes

30 Days, 30 Deeds
Sacred Acts to Transform the Heart

Every night, our scholars in residence explore one simple deed that could have a far-reaching spiritual impact on our lives – and the lives of others. Every day we’ll make the intention to put that teaching into practice. Whether it’s forgiving someone who’s wronged us or putting service to others at the top of our list of priorities, these powerful lessons will remind us of the great gift the Prophet ﷺ‎  gave us: the best of character.

Daily at 8:10 pm EST. Attend in person at SeekersHub Toronto or watch live. 

Let’s #GiveLight to Millions More

We envision a world in which no one is cut off from the beauty, mercy, and light of the Prophetic ﷺ example. A world where the dark ideology of a few is dwarfed by radiant example of the many who follow the way of the Prophet ﷺ. But we can’t do it alone. We need your support. This Ramadan, we need you to help us #GiveLight to millions more. Here’s how.

Praying for a Trust Bearer: On Child-Bearing, Surat al-Anbiyā’ (verse 89), Duas from the Qur’an Explained

You’re listening to a series of lessons on important duas found in the Qur’an, as explained by Shaykh Ahmed Sa’ad Al Azhari – a distinguished master of the Qur’an and scholar in residence at Seekershub Toronto during Ramadan 2015.

Shaykh Ahmed addresses a sensitive and sometimes painful topic: why does Allah bless some of us with children, and others not? Is it better to be a happy, childless couple than to be an unhappy pair of parents to a child, who has been sent to test us? When praying for Allah to grant us children, what should we pray for – just any child or one that is a “trust bearer”?

This is a beautiful, concise explanation – just ten minutes, that is sure to move you and humble you.

All SeekersHub programming during this blessed month is freely available at the Ramadan Hub. Your financial support is crucial to our #SpreadLight campaign, which seeks to provide truly excellent Islamic learning to at least 1,000,000 seekers of knowledge in the coming year! This will serve as an ongoing charity (sadaqa jariyah) so please donate today.