Friday, 4 January 2013

Relight my Fire......

'Patience makes lighter what sorrow can't heal' said Horace...who?? Well Horace or his full name is Quintus Horatius Flaccus, was a Roman poet, long long time ago. Here, I think, he speaks about sorrow due to a broken heart. 

When I think of the word 'patience', it is not because of a broken heart but rather taming my fiery temper. 

Over the last few year, with the help of the Wise Owl (of course!), I have managed to keep my fiery temper under control. What used to take a tiny spark to ignite the fire, now requires a huge flame. Even then, I still have my 'off' days. I get very riled up when I feel Islam is under attack. I just feel that I need to defend Islam against anyone who is doing the attacking . That is when you will see my nostrils flaring and smoke seeping out of my ears. Not a pretty sight ...

In those instances, I felt that my actions were justified and that it was permissible for me to lose my temper, but the Wise Owl told me otherwise! He said that anger will always be a tool for satan. More often than not, when we get angry, we will lose the ability to think rationally. 

Hadith - Sahih Al-Bukhari 8.135, Narrated Abu Huraira, r.a.
Allah's Apostle Peace and blessings of Allah be upon him said, "The strong is not the one who overcomes the people by his strength, but the strong is the one who controls himself while in anger."

Hadith - Sunan of Abu Dawood, Narrated Atiyyah as-Sa'di, r.a.
AbuWa'il al-Qass said: We entered upon Urwah ibn Muhammad ibn as-Sa'di. A man spoke to him and made him angry. So he stood and performed ablution; he then returned and performed ablution, and said: My father told me on the authority of my grandfather Atiyyah who reported the Apostle of Allah (peace be upon him) as saying: Anger comes from the devil, the devil was created of fire, and fire is extinguished only with water; so when one of you becomes angry, he should perform ablution.

Ouchh!!! I'm no devil's puppet!

So I asked the Wise Owl, if the question that was being asked, was provocative, what should I do? He smiled (did I tell you that he is always smiling?)  and said, " Sister, just smile and explain the point to them patiently". I laughed out loud and asked him to wish me luck! 

Anyway, what triggered my anger in the first place was when an acquaintance was trying to argue with me about hijab. She insisted that it is not compulsory for women to wear hijab and that, it is a personal choice. She went on to say that even if a lady were to wear the hijab, it does not mean that the person is good. She knows many women without hijab whose heart is pure. 

The thing is, I used to save my arguments for the Courtrooms only as I was not paid to argue outside Court, but for matters relating to religion, I make a point to NEVER argue. Honestly, there is no point. Its not a matter of who is in the right or wrong. 

I have a very simple view of Islam. Islam is easy. Islam is either white or black. Islam is either right or wrong. To me, there is no grey areas in Islam but; that is my view. I never impose my views on others and I do not appreciate others pushing their views on me. I  respect the fact that as human, we will disagree on matters. 

I'm not a saint. I have flaws. The last thing I want to do is to argue on what's right or wrong when I am still struggling to try to be a Muslim. One thing I know, is that, in Islam, everything starts with the 'intention'. Everyone has a reason to do something and that is called 'intention'. Basically, in simple lay-man's term, it is, what's in your heart. 

When my heart made the decision to wear hijab, it was not because I was forced to nor was it because it was a fashion thing. I made the conscious decision on my own. Why? Because I realised that I was born a Muslim and if I want to continue to be one, I need to a believer and a follower of Islam. I did not want to be a Muslim by name but not by conduct.

"And tell the believing women to lower their gaze (from looking at forbidden things), and protect their private parts (from illegal sexual acts, etc.) and not to show off their adornment except only that which is apparent (like palms of hands or one eye or both eyes for necessity to see the way, or outer dress like veil, gloves, head-cover, apron, etc.), and to draw their veils all over Juyubihinna (i.e. their bodies, faces, necks and bosoms, etc.) and not to reveal their adornment except to their husbands, their fathers, their husband's fathers, their sons, their husband's sons, their brothers or their brother's sons, or their sister's sons, or their (Muslim) women (i.e. their sisters in Islam), or the (female) slaves whom their right hands possess, or old male servants who lack vigour, or small children who have no sense of the shame of sex. And let them not stamp their feet so as to reveal what they hide of their adornment. And all of you beg Allah to forgive you all, O believers, that you may be successful."

Surah An-Nur 24:31

"O Prophet! Tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to draw their cloaks (veils) all over their bodies (i.e.screen themselves completely except the eyes or one eye to see the way). That will be better, that they should be known (as free respectable women) so as not to be annoyed. And Allah is Ever Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful."

Surah Ah-Ahzab 33:59

Aisha reported: Asma bint Abu Bakr entered upon the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, while she was wearing a thin garment which she presented to him. He said, “O Asma, indeed, when a woman reaches the age of maturity it is not proper for her to show anything except this and this.” He pointed to his face and hands.
[Sunan Abu Dawud, Book of Clothing, Number 4104, Hasan]

To me, God has clearly commanded women,( myself included), to draw our veils over our body. Veil have been defined as '  a length of cloth worn by women as a covering for the head and shoulders and often especially in Eastern countries for the face; specifically : the outer covering of a nun's headdress'. What more do I want? For the law to be etched in stone?  or for God to yell in my ears? 

God has also commanded 'women of the believers' to draw their cloak over their body and  our beloved Prophet pbuh had said, that, the only parts of a women's body, which is permitted to be exposed, are her hands and face. 

So when we talk about 'intention',  I asked myself, 

1) Do I want to obey God's Commandments? 
2) Do I want to follow the teachings of Prophet pbuh?" 
3) Am I one of the women of the believers? 

My answer to question 1 & 2 ......err...YES!!!! For question 3, I don't know if I can qualify myself to be one of the women of the believers, as I am still trying but, I sincerely hope with all my heart that I am.

To some extent, I agree that, wearing the hijab is a personal choice. My personal choice is to obey my Creator. Simple. I do not question other women's choices. They need to ask the three questions themselves and answer them honestly.

Another reason is; the Wise Owl once told me, that husbands are fully responsible for their wives. They are the leader of the family hence they hold the responsibility of educating and correcting their wives and children,and  to ensure that they are on the correct path. 

"Ibn 'Umar reported that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, "All of you are shepherds and each of you is responsible for his flock. A man is the shepherd of the people of his house and he is responsible. A woman is the shepherd of the house of her husband and she is responsible. Each of you is a shepherd and each is responsible for his flock." Sahih Bukhari

From what I understand from this Hadith is that, my husband is answerable for my sins. My Jannah lies with him but he can be thrown in Hell for my wrongdoings. God is fair isn't He?  Honestly, my husband is not prefect and he drives me mad sometimes but I do love him. Like me, he is also trying to be a Muslim and at times when I'm hanging by a thread, he makes sure that I don't fall, so, the last thing I want, is to drag him to Hell over my sins.....

What happened to the acquaintance? Well....I didn't breathe fire on her and burned her to ashes.  Tempted though.... She is still alive and kicking. I didn't patiently explained things to her either because I don't think she wanted an explanation. She just wanted to push her point across. In the end, I thanked her for her views and walked away....

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