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Friday, 25 July 2014

The Misunderstood Effort by the Tableeghi Jamaat

Tableeghi Jamaat. Two words, that often brings much misinterpretation and often disregard as religious extremists movement in much trialed and tested present days. The main aim of tableegh (in Arabic means to convey) is to propagate the Islamic understanding externally and internally. This is a joint effort by group of dai’es (preachers) who are striving to implement the authentic Islamic way of life that was originally observed during the life and times of Rasulullah sallallahu alaihiwasallam and his blessed Companions. Masha’Allah. Tableeghi Jamaat often discouraged by those who have no knowledge about what it is all about, hence we rather keep swimming in the sea of dispute and ignorance, without even knowing we ask of Allah 17x and more for guidance towards the Siratul Mustaqeem. These effort sometimes, often refused even by our own family members.

To involve ourselves in the work of da’wah (inviting others towards Islam) and tableegh (conveying the message to Islam to humanity)is a noble work indeed. In Surah Fussilat (41) verse 33, Allah Ta’ala has said,“And who is better in speech than one who invites to Allah and does righteousness and says, "Indeed, I am of the Muslims."”.It is one of the encouraged act as part of our duty as a khalifah in this Dunya. The work of da’wah and tableegh is not a sole responsibility lies on one shoulder, rather a collective effort of the entire Ummah. The work of da’wah is also not solely should be done by those who are learned, the aalim, or the aalimah, but it is a joint effort by the Ummah. Narrated Anas bin Malik:The Prophet (ﷺ)said, "A single endeavor (of fighting) in Allah's Cause in the forenoon or in the afternoon is better than the world and whatever is in it." – Sahih Bukhari (2792). Imagine the rewards in going out in the path of Allah (concentrating on doing sole tableegh efforts), as narrated by Abu `Abs, (who is `Abdur-Rahman bin Jabir) Allah's Messenger (ﷺ)said," Anyone whose both feet get covered with dust in Allah's Cause will not be touched by the (Hell) fire." Sahih Bukhari (2811).

As how the blessed Sahabahs strove to be the best of Muslims in the era of Khair-ul-Qurun (best period of Ummah) by exemplifying the manner of Prophet sallallahu alaihi wasallam in piety, ikram, discipline, being selfless andmore, Masha’Allah. The Tableeghi Jamaat noble effort was initiated in the 1920s in India by Maulana Muhammad Ilyas Kandhalwi (from the Kandhlawi’s family that produced the likes of Fada’il Amal, Muntakhab Ahadiths and more). The effort was later succeeded by Muhammad Yusuf Kandhlawi as the Ameer of Tableeghi Jamaat.

We were first introduced to Tableeghi Jamaat in 2013 where we attended the bayans at Masjid Sri Petaling in Malaysia. On a weekly basis, the ladies attended taleem (readings from Fada’il Amal, Muntakhab Ahadith and a short muzakarahat the end of the session) in a sister’s home. The active attendance was forgotten after 3 months, though within those months, our mehram striving to keeping our imaan at par (or more Insha’Allah) by regularly attending the 3-days gathering at the new Karachi Ijtima’ place at Orangi town and giving taleem at home.

We get to experience firsthand of what it feels like to be part of the Tableeghi Jamaat. The trip was initially unplanned, however, by Grace of Allah, we were sent here, Alhamdulillah. Verily, Allah Ta’ala is the best of planners.

Masha’Allah, Our amazing experience started off at New Lynn(near Waitakere), where we only intend to join the taleem in the morning. By invitation, and for the thirst of knowledge, we decided to stay longer and Alhamdulillah, get to complete the 3-days stay. We learned new terms, new wayof doing things and realized how little do we know about Deen and the Sunnah,most importantly. The jamaat ladies gave karguzari (sharing experiences) about their spiritual journey in spreading Allah’s Deen before our meeting. The karguzari comprises of what they have done in their journey, who they have able to reach out to, places they’ve been to and how the responses are towards the tableegh effort and so on.

In the morning, we’ll take turns to read the Fada’il Amal ranging from the Seerah, Virtues of the Holy Qur’an, Salaat, Zikr, andTableegh. This has been decided in the musyawarah(meeting) between the ladies jamaat’s husbands a day earlier or so. Each of the sisters will take turn to read the selected collection of authentic hadiths pertaining each topic before proceeding to Muntakhab Ahadiths. Timing will be adhered to, for example, Kitabi Qur’an and Fehme Qur’an will take approximately 20 minutes, and everyday, the session will end before Zuhr salat with a 10-20 minutes of muzakarah(where the ladies, will again take turns to present the 6 qualities of the Sahabahs to follow Insha’Allah). The 6 qualities of a Muslim was also emphasizedby Luqman alaihi salam to his son. If we go through Surah Luqman, we will see that he was advising his son about these veryqualities only (concerning imaan, salat, ilm and zikr, ikram Muslimin, ikhlas,da’wah and tableegh).

We then, moved to our next location in the morning after an wholesome breakfast (Masha’Allah, by the host, anda short muzakarah by one of representative from the men’s jamaat before leaving),to Mangere for our little mission on the 31st May. We’ve stayed there for 3 days and 2 nights. What has been observed during these 3-days was Masha’Allah, the ikram among us (that I never get to personally experience everin my entire life- being selfless), an eye-opener series of bayans by theinvited maulanas, sisterhood and questions and answers session whenever we arefree of khidmat (assigned tasks at the host’s place). The locals usually will join us after Zuhr salat to listen to the bayans, alongside the readings of Muntakhab Ahadiths. Purdah were observed and preserved at all times, where the ladies and men stayed in separate assigned accommodations, no communications with each.Husbands and wives only meet in a designated short duration of time during amulakat (meeting). Purdah were also observed strictly by the ladies jamaat especially, where they’d covered themselves completely (felt embarrassed by being around them, and felt the niqab was nothing)

We departed from the tableeghi jamaat group after 3 days ( 3rd of June ) as they will commence their blessed journey towards the areas in South Island. We attended a follow-up (jord) on the 8th of June, again, by invitation(Alhamdulillah, knowing that we are still babies in this work of da’wah and tableegh)

Insha'Allah, today (19th June 2014) we will be continuing our effort (may Allah accept our deeds and intention) for the 10-days jamaat. May Allah ease the path of those in the journey in spreading da'wah, even in gasht by the men). Insha'Allah.

Allah Ta'ala knows best and I know nothing, Alhamdulillah.

  1. Dawat O Tabligh & Islah on 12th June 2004.
  2. Muntakhab Ahadith on 13th June 2014.
  3. Questions Regarding Jama’ah Tabligh. on 12th June 2014.
  4. Sunni Forum. on 12th June 2014.

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

The Homemakers of Dannemora

Purdah-bound and taqwa-conscience, naturally beautiful but fashionable (for their husbands Alhamdulillah), simplicity at its best, definitely not culture-bound, the madrasah for their children, selfless (Masha’Allah!), reserved but yet comical and animated (among the ladies only, of course); these are the best words to describe the homemakers of Dannemora, one of the suburbs in South Auckland, New Zealand.

Progressive Way, Laidlaw Way

Te Irirangi Drive and Ormiston Road Junction

Stepping into the home of the homemakers of Dannemora  will remind you of the one ummah, united by the kalimah, love for one another for Allah’s sake alone, Subhan’Allah. When most of homes will have a television set in the main hall, we will enter into a small library comprising of the children’s Tas-heel series books, Seerah and salira, the tafseer, the Qur’an, collection of ahadiths, muntakhab ahadith, fada’il amal etc. 
Their homes are always open to guests, but, no one has ever taken advantage of it. Attempting at exemplifying the Sunnah way of life in their homes, the homemakers in this part of the suburbs excelled in implementing such conducts , as sternly as possible, regardless of the fact that they choose to settle around the non-Muslims, for the sake of attaining Allah Ta’ala’s pleasure alone, Subhan’Allah. Adorning knee-length khimar at home, even without the presence of the non-Mehrams, the ladies believe that hijab and purdah needs to be observed and instilled among the children, so that they are being nurtured, disciplined according to the Sunnah since at the very young age. The result? It’s amazing, as we could observe these children, as young as 4 years old understanding the difference between mehrams and non-Mehrams. Hijab is not merely about covering our aurat, but also with our voice and even our shadow. In one of the ladies' home, we used to knock as a non-Mehram alert sign, Masha'Allah.
Knee-length khimar

Two homes of these amazing ladies located just less than 2 minutes’ walk from the Dannemora Islamic Centre. Conveniently having an Aalimah as their next door neighbor and whom also teaching their kids at the centre after school, practicing Deen has been rewarding for them so far Alhamdulillah. We can’t help but to remember the Sahabiah and the wives of Rasulullah sallallahu alaihi wasallam by just being around them, Subhan’Allah. We too, can’t help but (not only wishing to) to practice the Deen and bring it to higher level by being around them, the company of the pious. When being asked as to why they prefer to stay at home and be a full time housewife, the ladies,  answered and among many reasons is to take good care of the amanah given to them by Allah Ta’ala; their children. One of them even decided to homeschool her children (she used to teach in a madrasah, Masha’Allah).The nurturing of Deen is apparent in each of these household.  None of these home have a single television set and the children are used to it, so much so that they don’t even bother watching one at someone else’s home. When one of the children is being asked as to why they do not watch television, the answer was amazing – “because it’s a fitna and TV will make me forget the hadiths I’ve memorized “ – Subhan’Allah! Resulting from such Sunnah-way-of-style-upbringing, the children of Dannemora have nothing but good manners Masha’Allah and the number of du’as they’ve memorized since 3 years old are amazing Subhan’Allah!

Dannemora Islamic Centre

Their husband’s humble income does not entice them at all to go out and work (and mixing around with the non-Mehrams), rather, they are more than happy to serve their husbands and the children, just like Saidatina Fatimah radi’Allahu anha, Subhan’Allah. Women only may need to go to work, if and only if, their husband’s income does not suffice to cover their basic needs or when the women themselves are high maintenance, according to them. Their humble home suggests simplicity, but purdah-conscience for the non-Mehrams. This simply means that whenever their husband’s friends or even relatives, are guests to these houses, a room will be already allocated for these men to have their meal and chat, while the women will be in a separate room, making it inaccessible for the non-Mehram to see them, let alone hearing their voices, Masha’Allah. The elder children will be the messengers, the ‘waitresses’ for them whenever meals are ready to be served in these separate rooms.

So, do they ever go out? Well, they do drive out to fetch their kids from school once in a while besides getting groceries (and sometimes, the kids would carpool with other ladies from the same suburb – such amazing ikram) besides taking turn babysitting each other’s children, whenever one of them goes for 3-, 10-, or 40-days masturat jamaat.  Masha’Allah, they never put Deen aside in their busy schedule (even as homemakers!). These ladies connected with the other masturat around the suburbs (East Tamaki, Papatoetoe, Mangere, Onehunga) in taleem and ta’lum, which held every weekend. 

Each of these ladies have their own stories, regardless whether it’s a happy ones or not, being a Muslimah homemakers always keep them happy and ready to serve, for their main aim is only to attain Jannah. Each of them has taught us to be a better Muslimah Alhamdulillah. They will make us realize that this Dunya is nothing … completely nothing as compared to what Jannah has to offer. They are definitely the best role-model to follow in adapting a Muslim home in this tested times and Alhamdulillah we've meet them in order to learn more about ourselves and accepting our mistakes and weaknesses.

May Allah Ta’ala elevate their status in the Dunya and in the Akhirah (and may they all attain Jannatul Firdous) for everything good they’ve done and more for the people around them, Allahumma Aameen.