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In the Name of God بسم الله


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ali_fatheroforphans last won the day on December 31 2021

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  1. Yeah I personally didn't see anything positive come out of this situation for the Muslims.
  2. @AbdusSibtayn I've been finding this book very good. Actually brother @Ibn Al-Ja'abi who's all over Arabic mashallah has also recommended this. https://www.amazon.com.au/Introduction-Koranic-Classical-Arabic/dp/0936347406 You can find both free pdf and solutions key online.
  3. Salam Alaykum, You have to understand how the hawza system works. Some people decide to pursue their hawza studies to become jurists. The hawza system is actually designed to cater for those people. However not everyone decides to pursue that path. Some people may do hawza to become experts at other fields such as philosophy, theology, history etc. It's not common to find a marja (those who people do we do taqleed to) to be an expert at a lot of other fields as well. They are specialists when it comes to their chosen field. This is why they may have not written books in other fields. The books you've mentioned relate to jurisprudence, which is expected since that relates to his speciality. I don't expect him to publish books on other subjects such as mysticism ('irfan) etc. If it goes beyond his area. So when people deem him to be a great scholar, what sort of criteria are you looking for to be able to validate or invalidate their conclusions? Are you basing it on the number of books written? How many followers? Presence? Or in a more technical sense of their chosen area of expertise? I would say the best people to ask would be those who have completed or are studying their advanced Kharij studies in hawza. How can a layman evaluate the expertise of these maraja if they have not even acquainted themselves with the science to an advanced level? It's like a high school student evaluating the works of a PHD student. Again, it's not a requirement nor necessary for a scholar to give public lectures. I know many scholars who prefer not to out of precaution and they prefer addressing issues in different ways to avoid misunderstandings. Some may not have the time simply due to such a demanding role where millions depend on their fatawa around the world. Do you realise how much pressure one is faced with for such a big task? Also not to disregard their personal spiritual responsibilities and their families.
  4. As brother @Ibn-e-Muhammad said correctly that when chest beating first started appearing in processions and public protests - the idea behind it wasn't the same as what we see today. It is definitely more organised today as opposed to people spontaneously hitting their chest which doesn't necessarily require listening to a latmiya. It's one thing hiring a big studio, investing millions in producing nohay (latmiyas), having large rows etc. Where everything is properly planned. It's a completely different thing when people naturally out of grief start beating their chests.
  5. In Islam a person's superiority in eyes of God is based on how obedient they are to God. Our intention, actions and beliefs is what matters. It really doesn't matter whether a person feels superior, how we are in the books of God should be our concern. I don't think we're sent to this world to take unnecessary pride in these things.
  6. Salam Alaykum Sister, Just read your story and really appreciate you for sharing your authentic reflections. I just wanted to make a couple of points: (1) Be cautious about your own spirituality and I understand it's tough. But please don't let this become a negative experience for you. Feelings of resentment, frustration and anger are not linked with true faith. Sometimes this can lead people to adopt a completely flawed understanding of Islam which is not based on rational principles. This is why some people can be overly attracted to aggressive Islamic discourse which aims to castigate others and where blanket statements are made. This will only harm you in the long-term. This 'me' vs 'the world' attitude can kick in and its harmful. I know it's tough and may Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) make it easy for you but you have to really manage and navigate your emotions properly. Again surround yourself with others and don't let too much resentment build. (2) Remember that not everyone wants to go deep into religion. Only those who have reached that level and have experienced contentment and satisfaction from faith, will appreciate your journey. That's why it's worth surrounding yourself with those people. (3) Remember that everyone operates within a set of assumptions about the world. Our actions are only a manifestation of our internal worldview and beliefs. What we say or do will always link back to our worldview. I really don't blame your family, it's just that in the contemporary context, God has been detached from the equation. If someone doesn't place God on the top, then we will replace it with ourselves and our ego. Everything then is about fulfilling our materialistic needs. Just understand where they're coming from, this will prove to be very important. You have to go to the root. (4) From an ethical and Irfani side of things, it can be problematic focusing on others rather than our own journey. We don't know our end and matters of the heart are best left to Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى). Don't ever look down on anyone. If you have faith then thank Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) for it and wish the same for your family. These are just some points to ponder over. May Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) make it easy for you. Don't stress too much, you'll be fine.
  7. Salam Alaykum brother, It is not correct that we can ever get to know a person fully until we actually get married and start physically living with them. Life before marriage and after marriage will be different. You'll also find out a lot about a person when you see how they react during hardships. The point I'm making is that we can't ever be fully certain. There will be some surprises and you need to be mature and smart to deal with them. Sometimes you'll end up liking a person more after marriage when you trust the process and let true love grow. Love is not something that is found, it grows with time. I don't have any advice I believe you are the best one to judge the situation and trust your intellect. I would say that however if you don't find any serious red flags that might overly compromise your faith then put your trust in Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى). Also dig into why you have that uncertainty? Could it just be a normal feeling that everyone has? Just make sure that whatever decision you make, it's not when you're in a bad mood or an overly good mood. Be balanced and be smart about this. Also it's good to head into marriage with a positive mindset. You should have this desire to be a good person and treat your spouse with dignity and respect.
  8. Best to have contacts of some local or overseas scholars who have a strong grasp of jurisprudence. Preferably those who have finished their advanced kharij studies in usul/fiqh. I've given up on relying on direct fatwa from the office of the maraja cos takes a month for them to reply. I prefer messaging a scholar directly.
  9. Yes exactly and I've also met some who aren't marjas but do exhibit those traits. Some top scholars tend to be a bit lowkey and they actually don't self-promote themselves. But they have truly transformed the lives of their students and helped them immensely. It gets to the point that their students translate their works and share their pearls of wisdom with others. I've also noticed that they don't limit the learning experience of the laity or students of knowledge to themselves. This is one trait which stands out to me a lot. May Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) expose us to the true scholars.
  10. Salam Alaykum, I came across some very interesting reflections by a Sunni Scholar on the characteristics of true scholars and how we can know who to learn from: 1. Other scholars who have finished complete curricula from *other* Islamic seminaries, universities, and with *other* teachers, learn from this person and see this person as *their* teacher. 2. This person’s students have healthy family lives, good careers, and are generally well-placed in life relative to the environment/community they are in. One would not think that they have given up on fulfilling any of their worldly responsibilities in order to learn from the ‘alim. The student body includes those who are well-educated in other fields, indicating that what is being provided truly has the intellectual and academic capacity to benefit everyone. 3. This person maintains an absolutely uncompromising ethic on gender interactions and etiquette between students and teachers. There are no secrets, no “closed-doors”, no private matters that anyone is asked to keep for them. 4. This person’s teachers and peers agree on their ability to understand, teach, and lead. They also endorse their character. 5. This person’s institutional and community work revolves around *other* people being trained and equipped to carry the work after him. They are not clamoring to be the star of the show themselves but seek to empower other ‘ulama and students. 6. This person’s adab and manners in public are impeccable. They are not emotionally driven to outbursts due to current events and do not create public spectacles of conflict and virtue-signaling to demonstrate that he has taken the “correct” position. 7. Their reformative efforts are done to change, not to show. Reformative advice is given to people and in a way that can actually change them, rather than shame them. 8. Their critiques of those who they disagree with are about the issues and arguments. They are not personal or biting in nature. 9. Their behavior in private or one-on-one may be more frank or direct, but they do not cross the line of decency and decorum that they present in public. More or less, they are the same person. 10. They do not self-promote or discuss their own achievements. They do the work, and qualified, capable, educated students find so much value in their work that THEY do the promotion to push the work forward. 11. Their opinions are firm on the Shari’ah and they are consistent in their methodology – but they are understanding and adaptive to the social-emotional needs of others. 12. They are not insular when it comes to the non-Muslim society and community. They openly engage and can address other communities with manners and intellect. 13. They do not advocate cultural retreat but advocate benefiting society as a whole through honest service, exchange, and engagement. 14. Their knowledge is not limited to the Islamic sciences, but they are well-read on the intellectual foundations of other worldviews, civilizational systems, and the modern world. 15. Their scope of discourse is comprehensive. They have the ability to bring the Quran, the Sunnah, and the scholarly tradition to bear on the context at hand without being obsessed with a singular issue. Instead, they are able to transmit the legacy of the Prophet (s) in a comprehensive manner that addresses the full-scope of Islamic discourse. They exist and they are out there. Seek them out and benefit from them as much as you can.
  11. This world is nothing but a playground. It's just a temporary place. Why would anyone be sad for it to end. We were never meant for this world.
  12. I'm studying it through the ehawza institution which focuses on classical Arabic - very geared towards Quran and Hadith literature. But also have a tutor on the side who is teaching me Modern Standard Arabic and I'm working through a book. There are slight differences but learning MSA and classical Arabic go hand in hand. It'll also give you a great mix of vocab. Anyway I don't think it's easy doing it by yourself at all - you defs need someone to hold your hand in this journey if you decide to do it. Or at least an institution where you're provided with a step by step process to follow.
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