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The New SeekersGuidance Newsletter is Out. Check out the new design, take a course, and suggest to others

Winter 2011 Session Starts Jan. 24. Register NOW! The New SeekersGuidance Newsletter is Out. Check out the new design, take a course, and suggest to others

SeekersGuidance Courses Winter 2011

Dear Seeker,

Since its introduction to the course catalog, this 12-week course on Islamic parenting has consistently proved our most popular, and it’s not difficult to see why. First, the myriad of contemporary opinions on the subject of parenting available to English-speaking Muslims was confusing, to say the least. Muslim parents would often find themselves asking what action would be most pleasing to Allah, and struggling to find clear answers amongst all of the sources.

Second, as Muslims, we realise the immense blessing that the opportunity to raise the next generation of believers is. Imparting children with God-consciousness, sound values, and proper manners is a trust from Allah, and therefore should not be taken lightly.

This course offers parents and guardians parenting advice based on the Qur’an and the Prophetic example (may peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). Students study the classical text on Islamic parenting (Simt al-`Uqyan) by Imam Muhammad ibn Ahmad al-Ramli, one of the leading authorities of the Shafi`i school in the tenth century AH, and its commentary by the Yemeni scholar Shaykh Abdullah ibn Ahmad Basudan. They will learn how to:

* Inculcate Islamic manners and the Prophetic character in their children
* Provide children with sound Islamic education
* Raise a spiritual child who loves Allah and His Messenger (peace be upon him)
* Protect one’s children from negative influences, and
* Discipline children when necessary

Our course instructors — Shaykh Faraz Rabbani and Ustadha Shireen Ahmed — are currently raising and home-schooling their own three children in Toronto, Canada, and are therefore in the best position to address contemporary issues and challenges facing Muslim parents and educators in the West. Final lessons of this course will focus on this practical aspect of parenting. Highly recommended for those with children, those expecting a child, or those considering having children.

TESTIMONIAL: “I love the method of instruction and the live sessions Q&A opportunity and especially the forums. I was also able to use all of the material given as references including all the reading and viewing material (articles, video and audio, etc.) even after the course ended. Also the ability to download, and low cost.” (Fall 2009 Student)

Money Matters Islamic Finance in Everyday Life

Sh. Faraz Rabbani  ·  12 downloadable lessons  ·  3 live sessions

This course is intended for all adult Muslims who want to ensure that their daily financial dealings are legitimate and pleasing to Allah Most High. This unique course is based on both classical and contemporary texts, such as Mufti Taqi Usmani’s Islamic Finance: An Introduction. Students will acquaint themselves with the basic principles of Islamic finance; several contemporary issues will be covered as well, such as investing in financial securities and Shariah-compliant financing.
Absolute Essentials of Islam: Beliefs & Worship

Sh. Faraz Rabbani  ·  12 downloadable lessons  ·  3 live sessions

This course covers the fundamentals of the religion that all believers are obligated to know and practice: sound beliefs, valid purification and prayer, zakat, fasting, and the key principles related to one’s life and dealings. The course is based on Shaykh Faraz Rabbani’s The Absolute Essentials of Islam. The course covers the basics of the religion in an approachable and practical format, making it an ideal course for new Muslims and all those wishing to learn how to perfect their faith and religious practice.
Prophetic Conduct: Islamic Manners in Everyday Life

Sh. Faraz Rabbani  ·  12 downloadable lessons  ·  3 live sessions

“What would the Prophet do?” That is a question we often ask ourselves, but sometimes the answer is not clear to us. This course provides important and insightful glimpses into the Prophet’s inspirational personality and manners, empowering students to build their own Islamic manners by attempting to emulate that of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). The course is an explanation and contextualization of Shaykh `Abd al-Fattah Abu Ghuddah’s influential and celebrated book Islamic Manners.

Join us this Winter!

We are pleased to offer classes in Arabic, Guidance, Qur’an, Beliefs, Spirituality, and Law.
View our Course Catalog for more details.

SeekersGuidance – A class for serious seekers: Dars Maraqi al-Falah – Mastering the Fiqh of Worship according to the Hanafi school – with Shaykh Faraz Rabbani – Blog

Mastering Worship

Dars Maraqi al-Falah

درس مراقي الفلاح

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For seekers of knowledge who have covered at least two complete texts in the fiqh of worship, and who know Arabic, Mastering Worship will be covering Imam Shurunbulali’sMaraqi al-Falah in full, with Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

The commentary (Maraqi al-Falah) will be read in Arabic, and explain in both Arabic and English, through twice a week live online lessons. The lessons will be recorded for those unable to attend live.

There will be an online forum for QA, discussion, and for related texts & resources. [The pdf of the commentary, Tahtawi’s hashiya, and other important works will be provided.]

The goal of the class is simple: to master the fiqh details of the chapters on worship (purification, prayer, fasting, zakat, and hajj). We define “mastery” as thorough understanding of the text itself, its legal reasoning, and key details. Fiqh is deep knowledge, with understanding of nuances and implications.

The purpose in this mastery is to seek the pleasure of Allah, through benefitting oneself and others by preserving, acting upon, and transmitting this noble Prophetic inheritance.

The means to mastery would be through understanding of eight matters related to the text:

1. Tawdih (clarification of the text, in expression and indication)

2. Taqyid (conditioning the text, where essential conditions are needed)

3. Tafsil (detailing the text, where essential details are needed)

4. Taswir (describing the text’s issues, through practical examples)

5. Taq`id (clarifying the legal principles the text’s issues are based on or entail)

6. Tafri` (giving the important derived rulings, classical and contemporary, that a serious seeker must know)

7. Ta`lil (understanding the legal reasoning and wisdom underlying the text’s rulings)

8. Tadlil (understanding the legal proofs for the rulings of the text)

The expectations from the students would be to:

1. Prepare for the class, by [a] thorough reading of the matn; [b] careful reading of the commentary–with focus on the legal details and reasoning mentioned in the commentary; [c] preparing properly thought-out questions related to the text and its implications. It is encouraged, especially for more advanced students, to research key issues in the reference works, commentaries, and other complete works on the fiqh of worship. (This is not an expectation. Students are welcome to email the instructor for advice on this.)

2. Attend the class, with [a] attentiveness, through cutting out distractions (no surfing, messaging, texting, etc); [b] participation when the instructor asks questions; [c] asking questions, from their preparation or from things unclear in the text or the instructor’s explanations.

3. Review of the class notes and text. Research of issues that arise is encouraged, and asking questions regarding things that remain unclear is essential. The more you can keepreviewing the text (especially the matn), the better. Test yourself, by checking whether you remember the key details. Diagramming the text helps.

4. Take notes. It is best to write out the matn itself, and essentials from the commentary (such as the key details and reasoning). This is also good Arabic writing practice.

5. Participate in the Class Forum by asking questions, sharing issues of benefit, and getting involved in the relevant discussions, with the proper manners of a keen seeker of knowledge (talib `ilm).

6. Seek Allah’s assistance, make this a means of seeking His pleasure, have high secondary intentions of acting upon what you learn with excellence, preserving and transmitting Prophetic guidance, to benefit yourself and to benefit others, and to gain all the benefits mentioned by Allah and the Messenger (peace and blessings be upon him) for those who seek and transmit sacred knowledge for the sake of Allah.

The class coordinator is Sidi Abdullatif al-Amin (abdullatif@seekersguidance.org) at SeekersGuidance (www.SeekersGuidance.org), which is hosting this semi-private class. The class will cover the text as a whole. It is being taught as an ongoing dars (twice a week), and we expect it to take 12-15 months to complete. There is a suggested class fee of US$180 per 24 classes. The classes will be held on Sunday and Tuesday nights at 11 pm Eastern time (8 pm Pacific; 4 am UK, Monday and Wednesday mornings; 6 am Amman, Monday and Wednesday mornings). Class registration is currently open (email abdullatif@seekersguidance.org, with some information about yourself and your Islamic educational background). First classes begin on Sunday, November 28th, 2010, insha’Allah.

And Allah alone gives success

SeekersGuidance – A class for serious seekers: Dars Maraqi al-Falah – Mastering the Fiqh of Worship according to the Hanafi school – with Shaykh Faraz Rabbani – Blog.

‎” Niyyah without ikhlas is riya”

‎” Niyyah without ikhlas is riya” ( Ihya)

Please see link below on the importance of niyyah by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani.

http://seekersguidance.org/ans-blog/2009/05/27/the-reality-and-importance-of-intention/

Fasting Six Days of Shawwal – Ruling, Whether Consecutive, Combining Intentions, Wisdoms, and What if Unable to Fast? – Faraz Rabbani Fasting Six Days of Shawwal Fasting Six Days of Shawwal

Fasting Six Days of Shawwal – Ruling, Whether Consecutive, Combining Intentions, Wisdoms, and What if Unable to Fast? – Faraz Rabbani Fasting Six Days of Shawwal Fasting Six Days of Shawwal

In the Name of Allah, the Benevolent, the Merciful

Fasting Six Days of Shawwal


The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Fasting Ramadan and following it with six days from Shawwal is like continual fasting.” [Muslim, on the authority of Abu Ayyub (Allah be pleased with him)]

This is because the reward of actions is multiplied (at least) ten-fold. So Ramadan is like fasting 300 days, and the six days of Shawwal like fasting 60 days. The Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) himself stated this explictly: “Fasting Ramadan is like fasting ten months, and fasting six days [of Shawwal] is like fasting two months. That is like fasting a full year.” [Ahmad & Nasa’i]

1. Religiously recommended. Based on the outward purport of this hadith, the majority of the scholars–including Imam Shafi`i, Imam Ahmad, and Imam Abu Hanifa consider it a recommended sunna to fast six days in Shawwal. There are narrations from Abu Hanifa indicating its dislikedness, but these are understood to relate to considering it a duty to fast these days. [Nawawi, Majmu`; Ibn Qudama, Mughni; Ibn al-Humam/Marghinani, Fath al-Qadir `ala al-Hidaya; Ibn Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar]

2. Consecutive or not? Some of the scholars considered it recommended to fast these days consecutively after Eid al-Fitr, including Imam Shafi`i. They based this on a hadith related by Tabarani and others in which the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) is reported to have said, “Fasting six consecutive days after Eid al-Fitr is like fasting the entire year.”

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Other scholars, including both the Hanbalis and Hanafis, considered it the same to fast consecutively or not–because they deemed the above hadith to be excessively weak.

However, they caution that one shouldn’t put it off such that one ends up missing the great reward of fasting six days. It is also a consideration that avoiding difference of opinion is religiously recommended–so trying to fast the six days consecutively would appear to be superior.

3. Combining intentions with missed fasts. It is valid to combine the intention of making up missed Ramadan fasts and the sunna of fasting the six days of Shawwal, though performing both separately is greater in reward.

4. The wisdom of fasting these six days. Among the benefits of fasting the six days of Shawwal is:

[i] Sign of acceptance. It is a sign of the acceptance of one’s Ramadan fasts. This is because a sign of Allah’s accepting a good deed is to be granted the success to perform similar good deeds, with consistency.

[ii] Consistency itself is beloved. The actions most beloved to Allah and the Messenger (peace and blessings be upon him) are those done most consistently.

[iii] Sign of thankfulness. Fasting these six days is an expression of thankfulness for the reward of fasting that Allah grants on the day of Eid. Continuing to fast is a sign of being, as the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) described himself, “A truly thankful servant.” Thankfulness is the key to increase, and a means of securing one’s blessings and good.

[iv] Sign of commitment to continue. Fasting these six days is a sign of one’s commitment to continue in worship and submission to Allah, willingly–and not merely out of obligation.

5. If unable to fast the six days of Shawwal due to some genuine excuse, one should make the firm intention that if this excuse didn’t exist one would have fasted. If one is sincere & true in one’s intention, then one will–by Divine Grace–have the full reward of fasting these days, because, “Actions are by their intentions, and each person shall have whatever they intended,” as the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) explained. [Muslim] The signs of being true in one’s intention is that if one’s excuse is lifted, one hastens to fulfill the intended matter.

[Ref: Ibn Rajab, Lata’if al-Ma`arif; Ibn Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar; Hamawi/Ibn Nujaym, Hashiyat al-Ashbah; Nawawi, al-Majmu` Sharh al-Muhadhdhab; others]

And Allah alone gives success.

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Faraz Rabbani

See also: Imam Zaid Shakir’s Translation of Ibn Rajab’s Lata’if al-Ma`arif on fasting six days in Shawwal:
Fasting Six Days in Shawwal: Part One:
http://www.newislamicdirections.com/…wwal_part_one/

Fasting Six Days of Shawwal: Part Two:
http://www.newislamicdirections.com/…wwal_part_two/

Fasting Six Days in Shawwal: Part Three:
http://www.newislamicdirections.com/…al_part_three/

Fasting in Shawwal: Part Four:
http://www.newislamicdirections.com/…wal_part_four/

http://seekersguidance.org/blog/2010/09/fasting-six-days-of-shawwal-ruling-whether-consecutive-combining-intentions-wisdoms-and-what-if-unable-to-fast-faraz-rabbanifasting-six-days-of-shawwalfasting-six-days-of-shawwal/

Why is Surat al-Ikhlas Referred to as Surat al-Ikhlas (The Chapter on Sincerity) by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

SeekersGuidance Supports Islamic Relief’s Efforts for Victims of Haiti Earthquake

SeekersGuidance Supports Islamic Relief’s Efforts for Victims of Haiti Earthquake

The people of Haiti are in dire need of support after their country was hit by a 7.0 magnitude earthquake this past Tuesday. 45,000 to 50,000 people are feared to be dead and many more injured. (BBC) Homes, schools, and hospitals have collapsed with people trapped inside them.

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IslamicRelief has announced that it is teaming up with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints to give $1 million in aid to the survivors of the earthquake. (Washington Times) Naeem Muhammad of Islamic Relief (and Native Deen singer) is leaving the US on Saturday for Haiti to assist with the relief efforts. Donations to Islamic Relief can be made here.

Eyewitness Accounts

Several brothers and sisters from Haiti and the Dominican Republic have given SeekersGuidance eyewitness accounts and updates.

Ibn Ambroise (Haiti):

“Brother Abou Bakr lost his sister when their house crumbled (she made shahada a few months ago). They are gathered at a masjid in Port-au-Prince that still stands, alhamdulillah! Their condition isn’t too good. They have no food, no water, no clothing . . .  [very little] medicine.”

Abdus Salam (Dominican Republic):

“We are in contact with brothers that are in the masjid in Haiti and it was said that all the masjid are standing while all the churches were destroyed. So the brothers and siters are waiting there for the help of Allah. Ya Allah make it easy on them . . . Ameen!

[Shaykh Faraz Rabbani‘s response: “O Allah, protect the mosques and the churches–the Muslims, Christians, and others!”]

“They are really in need. They need food and all the help [they can get]. They [said] that their houses are all destroyed.”

Sr. Rodriguez Rosie (Dominican Republic):

“[Shaykh] Faraz, We have bad news. Our Haitian brother Abdurahman lost his sister, his  brother and his cousin yesterday because of the earthquake. He is very  sad, I ask you to please make lots of duas for him and his family.  We really need to give our brothers a hand…inshAllah.”

Healing Haiti Online Fundraiser

InshaAllah, SeekersGuidance, Islamic Relief, and MSA National will be hosting an emergency online fundraiser for the survivors of the Haiti earthquake. The online fundraiser is scheduled for this Sunday January 17 at 2pm EST. So far the following speakers are confirmed: Imam Zaid Shakir, Imam Tahir Anwar, Shaykh Faraz Rabbani, Imam Khalid Latif, and Nader Khan.

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SeekersGuidance Winter Session Courses Open: Learn to Live.