The I’tikaf

1. What is I’tikaf?
I’tikaf is to stay in a mosque for a certain number of days, especially in the last ten days of Ramadan.
2. What was the practice of the Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) regarding I’tikaf?
It was the practice of the Prophet (Peace be upon him) to spend several days and nights during Ramadan in the mosque, devoting himself to prayer and meditation, to the exclusion of all worldly activities.
3. What is the purpose of I’tikaf?
The main purpose is to seclude oneself from all worldly activities, and devote one’s whole time and energy to the remembrance of Allah.
4. Mention the kinds of I’tikaf?
There are two kinds of I’tikaf: Sunnah Mu’akkadah and Wajib
5. What conditions control the act of I’tikaf?
Three conditions control the act of I’tikaf:
  1. The Niyyah
  2. 2. To be in a state of purity
  3. Staying in the mosque.
6. What are the commendable things in I’tikaf?
1. To recite the Qur’an and understand its meanings
2. To engage oneself in the zikr (remembrance) of Allah
3. To seek forgiveness of one’s sins
4. To invoke blessings upon the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him)
7. What are the permissible things in I’tikaf?
1. To leave the masjid to relieve oneself or to take bath or for any lawful need
2. To leave for salatul jummah, if it is not held in the mosque where one is observing I’tikaf.
3. To eat, drink and sleep in the mosque.
8. Mention the things that nullify an I’tikaf.
1. Leaving the mosque intentionally without any genuine reason
2. Conjugal relations
3. Loss of purity by menstruation in case of women


1. What is the Arabic word for fasting?
‘Sawm’ is the Arabic word for fasting.
2. What is fasting?
Fasting is to abstain from eating, drinking and conjugal relations; from dawn to dusk for the sake of Allah.
3. On whom fasting is obligatory?
Fasting is obligatory on every sane Muslim, male and female.
4. What sort of people may not fast?
Fasting is not incumbent upon the sick, the travellers, the very old, the very young and the women who are pregnant or have infant children to feed. But the sick and the travellers should make up the days they have missed, when they are able to do so.
5. Mention some of the virtues of fast?
According to a hadith, “Every good of man is granted manifold increase – ten to seven hundred times. But Allah says, ‘Fasting is for Me, and I reward for it as much as I wish”. True fasting leads to forgiveness of all sins.
6. What is a voluntary fast?
It is a non-compulsory fast observed in days other than Ramadan.  Voluntary fast is called as ‘Sawm an-Nawafil’.
7. Mention the days over the year on which Sawm an-Nawafil is commended.
1. Six days of Shawwal
2. Ninth of Dhul-hijjah (that is, Day of Arafah)
3. Tenth of Muharram
4. 13th, 14th and 15th of each Islamic month
5. Mondays and Thursdays
6. In the month of Shaban
7. On alternate days

FATIMAH AZ-ZAHRA رضي ا لله عنها

1. Who was Fatimah Az-Zahra What was her mother’s name? When was she born? 
Fatimah Az Zahra was the youngest of the four daughters of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). Her mother’s name was Khadijah. She was born about five years before the prophethood of Allah’s Messenger.

2. Describe Fatimah’s marriage with Ali. 
Fatimah was married to Ali in 2 H. A ram was sacrificed, a wedding feast was arranged, and the house was readied for the bridal couple. Soft sand was brought from the sea-bed and was scattered it over the earthen floor. Dates and figs were laid out for the guests to eat in addition to the main meal, and a water-skin was filled with water they had perfurmed. This wedding feast was the finest held in Madinah at that time.

3. Fatimah’s life after her marriage was rigorous. Discuss. 
Fatimah’s life after her marriage was rigorous as she had no one in the house to help her. Ali, her husband, earned some money as a drawer and carrier of water, and she as a grinder of corn.

4. What did Allah’s Messenger do when Fatimah asked him to give her a servant? 
Allah’s Messenger said, ‘When you go to bed you say: Allahu Akbar thirty four times, Subhanallah thirty-three times, and Alhamdulillah thirty-three times; this is better for you than a servant.’

5. How many children did she have? 
She had five children, three sons, Hasan, Husayn and Muhsin; and two daughters, Zaynab and Umm Kulthum.

6. When did Fatimah die? 
Fatimah died on 3rd Ramadan in 11 H.

7. What had she willed before her death?
Before her death, Fatimah willed that her body be carried for burial in such a way that no one could recognise whether it was the body of a man or woman.

8. Write a character sketch of Fatimah. 
Fatimah resembled her father closely in habits, traits and in manner of conversation. She was kind and polite. She was a brave and a courageous lady. As there was no one to help her at home, she used to the rigorous household work by herself.

9. Modern Muslim women have indeed an example to copy in Fatimah. Do you agree with this view?
Not only do I agree with this view but also firmly believe that much of the problems in Muslim families will be solved if Fatimah’s inimitable character is imbibed by the modern day Muslim women.

10. Who were the four great women of the world according to the Prophet? 
The four great women of the world according to the Prophet were Khadijah, Fatimah, Maryam bint Imran and Asi’yah (wife of Pharoah).

11. What did the Prophet once say once about Hasan and Husayn? 
The Prophet said, ‘Dearest unto me of the people of my house are Hasan and Husayn’.


1. Can a needy believer keep away from work without a genuine reason?
No, a needy believer can’t keep away from work without a genuine reason.

2. Earning a lawful living is an obligation. Explain. 
One has to earn a living in order to survive in this world. Islam enjoins and emphasises that a Muslim’s earnings must be through lawful means. Able-bodied Muslims are not permitted to beg and live at the mercy of others. Earning a lawful living is a form of worship (Ibadah), and therefore, an obligation in Islam.

3. What is the dignity of work in Islam? 
Dignity lies in working and striving to make a lawful living. Be it a white-collared job or a menial job, a job signifies that the worker has respect and honour. No job is to be held in contempt or considered inferior. Honour belongs to those who work and not to those who sit idle and survive as parasites.

4. What standard does Islam set on earning a living? 
The general standard about earning a living is that Islam does not permit its followers to earn money in any way they like; rather it draws a clear line between lawful and unlawful methods based on the Qur’an and the Sunnah. There is no limit for earning. Muslims are permitted to earn as much as they can provided they do lawful business adopting lawful means.

5. Allah’s Messenger disliked beggary and lethargy. Discuss. 
The fact that Allah’s Messenger, Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), disliked beggary and lethargy can be understood from the following Hadith: ‘It is better for one of you to take his rope and fetch a load of firewood on his back and sell it than he should beg from people whether they give anything or refuse him’.

6. Is it right to hold certain manual jobs in contempt? Why?
No, it is not right to hold certain manual jobs in contempt because every job is important for the welfare of the society.

7. Which professions and industries does Islam forbid to believers?
Some of the professions and industries that are forbidden to believers are earning through:
1. Dancing and other immodest and shameful art
2. Making statues and similar articles
3. Production, sale and distribution of alcoholic drinks and drugs
4. Employment in night clubs, dancing halls, pubs, casinos and organisations dealing in usury
5. Gambling, interest, bribery, lotteries and such other practices which are harmful to the society.

8. What is the teaching of Islam relating to payment to workers?
The teaching of Islam relating to payment to workers is highlighted in the hadith: Pay the worker before his sweat dries. The workers must be paid promptly and there should not be any delay in the payment of their wages or salaries.

9. What will be the fate of the one who underpays his workers or just does not pay at all? 
The fate of the one who underpays his workers or just does not pay at all will be that Allah will become his adversary on the Day of Judgement. And when Allah becomes someone’s adversary, his fate is doomed.

So Taught Our Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم


1. “Never does a Believer draw a veil over the nakedness of another Believer without Allah’s drawing a veil over his nakedness on the Resurrection Day”. 
What does this hadith mean? 
It means that a Muslim should not reveal the shortcomings and defects of other Muslims. If we hide them from others, Allah will hide our shortcomings and defects on the Day of Resurrection. Allah will forgive our sins as none else except Him knows our weaknesses and defects.

2. ‘Allah, the exalted be He, says: if a servant of Mine merely desires to do good, I shall count this desire as a good deed; and if he does it I shall count it tenfold. and if he desires to commit a bad deed; but he does not commit it, I shall count it as a good deed, seeing that he has refrained from it only for My sake’. 
1) The above-quoted hadith, is it Hadith Qudsi or Hadith Nabawi? 
The above-quoted Hadith is Hadith Qudsi because it starts with the wordings ‘Allah, exalted be He,  says………’.

2) Allah is Most Kind and Merciful. Explain this in the light of the above-quoted hadith.
The fact that Allah considers even a Muslim’s mere desire, good or bad, as a good act, speaks volumes about the benevolence of Allah. Had it been otherwise, Allah would have considered the actual doing of the act, and not just the desire. One good deed is accounted as ten good deeds. Even refraining from committing a bad is accounted as doing one good deed. All these are clear pointers to the fact that Allah is indeed the Most Merciful towards His creation.

3) What is the purpose behind this hadith? 
The purpose is to encourage Muslims towards the contemplating and doing of good deeds. It is to motivate Muslims to do more and more good deeds so that they get manifold reward from Almighty Allah. It also clearly tells Muslims to be mindful of their intention. Even desire and good intention fetches reward.

4) ‘And if he desires to commit a bad deed; but he does not commit it, I shall count it as a good deed, seeing that he has refrained from it only for My sake’. Explain. 
Human mind is a factory of thoughts. Bad desires and thoughts coming to one’s mind are not bad in itself. The real test lies in not putting those bad desires into action. If a Muslim refrains from committing a bad act for the sake of Allah, then Allah shall count even this refraining as doing a good deed.

3. In the sight of Allah, the most hateful of things allowed, is divorce. 
1) What do you understand by the phrase ‘in the sight of Allah’? 
In the sight of Allah means according to Allah.

2) What is the most hateful of things allowed in Islam? 
Divorce is the most hateful of things allowed in Islam.

3) Does the Prophet (pbuh) mean that a Muslim should not practice divorce? 
No, the Prophet did not mean that. What is important here is that Muslims must exercise utmost care in pronouncing divorce, as it is the most hated of all the permitted acts in Islam.

4) Why divorce is the most hateful of all things allowed in Islam? 
It is because divorce separates two hearts and with their separation, two families get separated bringing problems in the Muslim society. It adversely affects the woman who is divorced. Her life becomes miserable. It shatters peace of mind and brings enmity between the families. It also badly affects the growth of the children of the divorced parents. Allah is Kind and Merciful. He wants Muslim society to live in peace and harmony. That is why He hates the act of someone divorcing his wife.

4. ‘Four things make for happiness: a righteous wife, a spacious dwelling, an honest neighbour, and a pleasant mount’. 
1) What are the four things that make one’s life happy? 
The four things that make one’s life happy are: 1) A Righteous Wife 2) A Spacious House 3) An Honest Neighbour 4) A Good Vehicle

2) Why did the Prophet mention the having of ‘A Righteous Wife’ in the first place, as a priority? One marries to live a happy life. A man’s life cannot be happy and peaceful if his wife is not righteous. Similarly, a woman’s life cannot be happy and peaceful if her husband is not righteous. So, the unmarried people must give first priority to good character and righteousness while selecting their life partner.

3) Why did the Prophet include ‘An Honest Neighbour’ in the list of things needed to make one’s life happy?
No man is an island. One has live in the society, adopting caring and sharing attitude. If one’s neighbour happens to be dishonest or a trouble maker, then one can’t lead a happy life. There will always be fighting with the neighbour and a sense of insecurity will prevail. That’s why the Prophet said one’s neighbour should be honest, which also means that you need to adopt honesty; after all, you are also someone’s neighbour!

5. “It is enough to make a man liar that he should go on repeating all that he might hear”.
What does his hadith teaches us? 
This hadith tells us to be careful while talking to others. It also warns us not to communicate what all we might hear from people or come to know through the media. A Muslim must be careful in his communication. Before communicating any matter we need to check its authenticity lest we communicate a lie being unaware of the real fact behind what we communicate. And, as the Prophet said, the sign of a liar is that he goes on repeating all that he hears.

6. A woman is sought in marriage on account of four things: her property, her family, her beauty, her piety. Seek to find one for the sake of her piety”. 
Why did the Prophet insist on marrying a girl of piety? 
Piety and right conduct will last long. The other three things mentioned in the hadith do not necessarily last. Today one may have property, tomorrow it won’t be there. Today one may be physically beautiful, tomorrow physical beauty will fade. But the inner beauty of righteousness will stay throughout one’s life until death. And it is also a fact that if piety is missing, then all material possessions of this world won’t bring peace in the family. What is true for a girl is true for a boy as well!

7. “Pay the worker before his sweat dries.”
Explain this hadith.
In this hadith, the Prophet Muhammad has instruction the employers and owners of companies to pay the wages and salaries of the employees promptly. They should not delay the salaries and wages of the workers as it is unjust and mean. To emphasis on how quick a Muslim employer should pay his staff, the Prophet has said that it should be paid ‘before his sweat dries’. How lofty is the teachings of Islam and how badly its teachings are trampled upon by the people at the helm of affairs!

8. ‘When a person spends on his wife and children, it is counted as charity on his part.’ 
What do you understand from the above quoted hadith? 
Money spent even for maintaining one’s family, wife and children, do not go waste. It is like an investment for which man will be rewarded. Taking care of one’s family is the best way to an honest and decent living. As one cannot give charity for illegal purposes and prohibited acts, in a similar way man cannot spend his money in whatever way he likes for the sake of the love of his family. He has to spend his hard-earned money in the right way for the right cause. Only then it is will be accounted as charity.

9. ‘If any Muslim clothes a Muslim when he is without clothes, Allah will clothe him with some green garments of paradise; if any Muslim feeds a Muslim when he is hungry, Allah will feed him with the fruits of paradise; and if any Muslim gives a drink to a thirsty Muslim, Allah will let him drink from the fountain of Paradise.’ 
1) What noble acts are mentioned by the Prophet (peace be upon him) in the above quoted Hadith? Clothing a Muslim when he is in need of clothes, feeding a poor and needy Muslim and providing water to a thirsty Muslim are the noble acts that are mentioned in this Hadith.

2) What will be the reward for the one who puts this Hadith into practice? 
The reward will be that in Hereafter Almighty Allah will make him enter Paradise and he will enjoy all the blessings therein.

3) What is the specific reward for a Muslim who gives a drink to a thirsty Muslim? 
If any Muslim gives a drink to another Muslim when he is thirsty, Allah will make him drink from the Fountain of Paradise in the life Hereafter.

4) What is the moral of this hadith? 
The moral of this hadith is that Muslims who are fortunate to have been blessed with the bounties of Allah in form of wealth and richness must share some of the bounties with those poor and needy Muslims who are not fortunate in terms of wealth.

10. ‘Beware, in everybody there is a piece of flesh, if it is healthy, the whole body is healthy, and if it is sick, the whole body is sick. Beware it is the heart’. 
Explain the above-mentioned hadith.
Human heart is the centre of all feelings and emotions. Feelings, good or bad, are directed from the heart. If the heart is set right, the whole person will be good and if the heart has bad feelings, the person will be of bad character. Therefore, every Muslim should be mindful of his heart. The Prophet has advised Muslims to remember Allah at all times so that the heart can be prevented from getting bad.

11. ‘When a person is drowsy during his Prayers, let him go to sleep until he knows what he recites’. 
1) What should a Muslim do when he is feeling drowsy in prayers? 
When a Muslim feels drowsy in Prayers, he should stop praying and go to sleep!

2) Why did the Prophet say that a Muslim who feels drowsy in prayers must go to sleep? 
Prayer is a sacred duty. It must be performed properly with utmost care. The person who prays must know what he is communicating with his Lord. In a state of drowsiness, one doesn’t know what one is reciting. And when one does not know what one is saying in Prayers, it would amount to playing with Allah and taking prayers for granted. Prayers must be performed in a conscious way. This is the reason why the Prophet said that a Muslim who feels drowsy in prayers must go to sleep.

12. ‘The best Jihad is to speak the truth before a tyrant’. 
1) What is Jihad? 
Jihad is to strive one’s utmost against evil and falsehood.

2) Explain the above-quoted hadith.
Speaking the truth requires boldness and courage. It cannot be done by cowards and weak-minded people. And speaking the truth before a tyrant, an oppressor, needs greater courage and fearlessness. The repercussions of speaking the truth before a tyrant will always be dangerous and risky to one’s life. One has to struggle through in order to speak the truth in front of an oppressor. That is why the Prophet termed it as the best Jihad.

13. ‘One who tries to help a widow and the poor is like a warrior in the way of Allah’.
1) What is the Arabic word for warrior?
Mujahid is the Arabic word for warrior. It also means ‘the one who strives against evil’.

2) What is the Arabic phrase for ‘in the way of Allah’. 
The Arabic phrase equivalent of the English phrase ‘in the way of Allah’ is ‘Fi Sabeelillah’.

3) What is the purpose behind this hadith?
The purpose is multi-folded. It is to convey the message to the Muslims that Jihad is not just fighting the enemy on the war front but Jihad is also to serve the cause of humanity by helping the poor and the weaker sections of the society. It is also to motive the Muslims to become facilitators in the upliftment of the Muslim society. One who struggles to help the poor and the widows in fact struggles in the way of Allah. He fights for their cause. He tries to bestow upon them the human rights which the society has violated. He, therefore, is a warrior in the way of Allah.

THE PROPHET MUHAMMAD صلى الله عليه وسلم – Part 4

1. When did Allah’s Messenger decide to perform al-Umrah? Why?
Allah’s Messenger decided to perform al-Umrah towards the end of the sixth year of Hijrah in 628 A.D because he was inspired by Allah to perform the Umrah.

2. How many companions accompanied him?
1400 companions accompanied him.

3. Why had they donned the Ihram? Why were they almost unarmed?
They had donned the Ihram because they were proceeding with the intention of performing the Umrah. They were almost unarmed because they did not intend to fight.

4. What happened when Allah’s Messenger and his companions approached Hudaybiyah?
When Allah’s Messenger and his companions approached Hudaybiyah, his camel stopped and knelt. It refused to get up. Allah’s Messenger understood that the camel was inspired by Allah and that Allah wanted him and the Muslims to camp at the plain of Hudaybiyah.

5. What did The Prophet remark about Qaswa?
The Prophet remarked, ‘Qaswa is not stubborn by nature; but He who held the elephant, holds her’.

6. What did the Prophet do when his companions complained of thirst?
When his companions complained of thirst, the Prophet took an arrow from his quiver and asked one of his companions to throw it into the eaters of the hollow. The man did as he was bidden, and water surged up plentifully. The companions quenched their thirst.

7. Why did the Prophet send Uthman to Makkah?
The Prophet sent Uthman to Makkah as his envoy to discuss matters and negotiate with the Quraysh.

8. Why did Uthman refuse to perform his own Tawaf, when the Quraysh invited him to do so? Uthman refused to perform his own Tawaf, when the Quraysh invited him to do so, because he was unwilling to perform the Tawaf prior to the Prophet performing it.

9. What is the Bay’at ar-Ridwan?
When Uthman bin Affan was late in returning from Makkah, a rumour spread that he had been murdered. The Prophet, then, assembled his companions and, sitting under a wild acacia tree, took a pledge from each one of his followers that they would remain steadfast, and fight to the death. This Pledge is known as the Bay’at ar-Ridwan – the Pledge of Good Pleasure.

10. What were the main features of the treaty of Hudaybiyah? In what way was it helpful to the Muslims in the long run?
The main features of the Treaty of Hudaybiyah were as follows: There would be peace for ten years. During this period, Muslims could go to Makkah and the Quraysh could go to Syria through the Muslim routes. There would be one-sided extradition – the Makkans taking refuge with the Prophet would be handed over on demand to the Quraysh, but Muslims taking refuge in Makkah would not be returned to the Prophet. The Muslims would depart from Makkah this year. They would be free to perform al-Umrah the next year and remain there in Makkah for three days only. Any tribe wishing to sign an agreement with either the Muslims or the Quraysh would be able to do so. The Treaty was helpful to the Muslims in the long run. Since there was peace prevailing between the people of Makkah and Madinah, it paved a way for the spread of Islam among the Pagan Arabian tribes. Muslims were able to win over the hearts of hundreds and thousands of people.

11. Why did the Prophet command Abu Jandal to return to Makkans? What lesson does this incident teach us?
The Prophet commanded Abu Jandal to return to Makkans because as per the Treaty of Hudaybiyah, the Muslims were to be returned to Makkans. This teaches Muslims that they should keep up the words of an agreement and be true to the pacts of the Treaty.

12. What did Umar (R.A) do at this point? At that point, Umar (R.A) was unable to control himself and he started questioning about the Prophet’s prophethood.

13. How did Allah’s Messenger calm him down?
Allah’s Messenger calmed him down by telling him that Allah will give Muslims the ultimate victory. He also assured him that he will surely go to Makkah and perform Tawaf one day.

14. How did the companions react when the Prophet bade them to sacrifice their animals?
They simply, broken at heart, gazed at him in bewildered silence.

15. What did Umm Salamah (R.A) advise Allah’s Messenger to do? What was its effect?
Umm Salamah (R.A) advised Allah’s Messenger to sacrifice the animal without saying a word to the companions. The effect was that the companions followed suit.

16. Which Surah descended upon the Prophet during his return march to Madinah?
Surah Al-Fath descended upon the Prophet during his return march to Madinah.

Surah Al Ghashiyah (The Overwhelming)

 (Must learn the English and the Arabic words as well)

The overwhelming الْغَاشِيَةِ

Faces وُجُوهٌ

That Day (The Day of Judgment)يَوْمَئِذ

Downcast خَاشِعَةٌ

will be thrown تَصْلَى

Spring of boiling water عَيْنٍ آنِيَةٍ

Food طَعَامٌ

Bitter thorn ضَرِيعٍ

Neither nourish, nor satisfy لا يُسْمِنُ وَلا يُغْنِي

Hunger جُوعٍ

Joyous, delighted نَاعِمَةٌ

Glad, Satisfied رَاضِيَةٌ

High عَالِيَةٍ

Idle Talk لاغِيَةً

Flowing fountain, spring عَيْنٌ جَارِيَةٌ

Glasses أَكْوَابٌ

Don’t they look, observeأَفَلا يَنْظُرُون

The Camel الإبِلِ

The sky السماء

The mountains الجبالِ

The earth الارض

How it is created كَيْفَ خُلِقَتْ

How it is raised high كَيْفَ رُفِعَتْ

How it is spread كَيْفَ سُطِحَتْ

How they are firmly fixed كيف نصبت

فَذَكِّرْ – So Remind them

مُذَكِّرٌ – The one who reminds

تَوَلَّى – To turn away

الْعَذَابَ الأكْبَرَ – Mighty punishment

إِلَيْنَا – To Us

إِيَابَهُمْ – Their return

عَلَيْنَا – On Us

حِسَابَهُمْ – Their account

Questions and Answers:

1. How will the disbelievers be treated in the Hereafter?
They will be made to enter the hot blazing fire, they will drink from a spring of boiling water and no food will be provided to them except bitter thorn, which will neither nourish them nor satisfy their hunger.

2. What comforts will the believers enjoy in the Hereafter?
The believers will be joyful. They will be rewarded with a high Garden (Paradise), where there will be a flowing fountain. They will be seated in high couches and enjoy the drinking glasses. Cushions and rich carpets will be spread for them to rejoice in recompense for all the good deeds they did in this world.

3. In the above verses, Allah tells man to ponder over some of His creations. Mention those creations.

Allah tells us to ponder over:
Camels – as to how they are created
The Sky – as to how it is raised high
The Mountains – as to how they are firmly fixed on the earth
The earth – as to how it is spread

4. How did Allah console the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) regarding the unbelievers ignoring his call towards Islam?
Allah consoles the Prophet (peace be upon him) by telling him that he need not worry when someone ignores his call, as his responsibility is only to remind the people of their duty and relationship with their Lord.

5. What do you understand from the last two verses (Verse no.25 & 26) of Surah Al Ghashiyah?
In the last two verses of Surah Al Ghashiyah, Allah declares to all people that they will ultimately return to Him, and then He will take account of all their deeds, good and bad, which they had done in this world.

6. At the end of the recitation of this Surah, the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) used to make a dua. Mention that Dua in Arabic along with its English meaning.

اللّهمّ حا سبني حسا با يسيرا
O Allah, take an easy account of me.

THE PROPHET MUHAMMAD صلى الله عليه وسلم – Part 3

1. What did Allah’s Messenger do when the news came that the army was approaching? Where did he pitch his tents?
When Allah’s Messenger got the news that the army was approaching, he came out with his followers, about three thousand in all, and encamped on the chosen site. His tent was pitched at the fort of Mount Sal’.

2. Where did the army of the enemy pitch their tents?
The army of the enemy pitch their tents at a little distance from Uhud.

3. Why were the Quraysh gripped with fear?
Quraysh were gripped with fear to find that the crops of the oasis had long been harvested. There was nothing for the forces of the army except the fodder they had brought with them.

4. What mischief did Bani Qurayzah make at this stage?
They broke the pact of alliance which they had with the Muslims and openly joined the enemy camp.

5. How does the Qur’an refer to the strain of those days?
The Qur’an refers to the strain of those days telling that ‘the believers were tried, and shaken with a mighty shock’.

6. What word did the hypocrites pass round?
The hypocrites were passing round the word that ‘it was impossible to continue to resist such an enemy with only a trench between them’.

7. Why did Allah’s Messenger offer a third of the date harvest to the chiefs of Ghatafan?
Allah’s Messenger offer a third of the date harvest to the chiefs of Ghatafan because he wanted them to withdraw from the field in return.

8. What was the reaction of the two Sa’ds to this suggestion?
They did not agree to this suggestion; they were prepared to face the enemy even in the most difficult times.

9. Describe the combat between Ali and Amr.
Ali accepted the challenge from Amr and said, ‘Amr, you swore by God that if any man of Quraysh offered you two alternatives you would accept one of them’. ‘Yes, I would,’ he said. Ali answered him: Then I invite you to Allah and His Messenger and to Islam.
‘I have no use of them’, Amr said. Ali, then, said,’Then I call you to dismount’.
‘I do not want to kill the like of you,’ he replied.
Ali said: But I want to kill you.
So Amr dismounted and both men advanced. A cloud of dust rose and they heard Ali’s voice crying ‘Allahu Akbar’. Amr was slain.

10. Why did Nu’aym bin Masud come to the Prophet?
Nu’aym bin Masud came to the Prophet to declare his belief in Islam and become a Muslim.

11. How did Nu’aym spread distrust throughout the invading army?
Nu’aym spread distrust throughout the invading army by giving conflicting reports.

12. What judgement did Sa’d ibn Mu’adh pass upon Bani Qurayzah?
The judgement of Sa’d ibn Mu’adh upon Bani Qurayzah was that ‘the men shall be slain, the property divided, and the women and the children made captives’.

From Surah Luqman (Verses 13 – 19)


Vocabulary and Meanings: 

1. يَعِظُهُ – he counseled him
2. يَا بُنَيَّ O my son!
3. لَظُلْمٌ – wrong, injustice
4. عَظِيمٌ mighty
5. الإنْسَانَ – man
6. أُمُّهُ – his mother
7. وَهْنًا – weakness, pain
8. عَامَيْنِ – two years
9. اشْكُرْ- be grateful
10. فَلا تُطِعْهُمَا – then don’t obey them
11. مَعْرُوفًا – good, kindness
12. حَبَّةٍ – grain, seed
13. صَخْرَةٍ – rock
14. لَطِيفٌ – Perceptive
15. أَقِمِ الصَّلاةَ establish prayers
16. وَأْمُرْ بِالْمَعْرُوف – and enjoin what is right
17. وَانْهَ عَنِ الْمُنْكَرِ – and forbid what is wrong
18. خَدَّكَ – your cheek
19. وَلا تَمْشِ – and walk not
20. مَرَحًا – arrogantly, haughtily
21. وَاقْصِدْ – and be moderate
22. وَاغْضُضْ – and lower, reduce
23. صَوْتِكَ – your voice
24. الأصْوَاتِ – the voices
25. الْحَمِيرِ – the donkey

Questions and Answers: 
1. What is ‘Shirk’?
Associating others with Allah and ascribing partners to Him is called Shirk. It is the mightiest of wrongs!

2. What advice did Luqman give his son regarding Shirk? 
Luqman advised his son not to associate anyone with Allah, for associating others with Allah is indeed a mighty wrong.

3. According to this Surah, who in the world enjoy greatest respect and obedience among mankind? Parents, particularly mothers, enjoy greatest respect and obedience among mankind.

4. What is the virtue of a mother as mentioned in the above quoted verses?
In the above quoted verses, Allah recalls the difficulties faced by a mother while carrying the baby in her womb and the hardship she faces during the weaning period and, therefore, enjoins upon man to be grateful to one’s mother.

5. Under what circumstances are children allowed to disobey their parents?
If one’s parents tell or compel the children to commit Shirk, that is to associate others with Allah, then the son or the daughter is allowed to disobey the parents.

6. Allah is Perceptive and Aware of all things. To emphasize this point, what example did Luqman give to his son? 
Luqman gave the example of a mustard seed telling his son, “O my son! Whatever it may be, even though equal to a mustard seed in weight, or within a rock or in the sky or in the earth, Allah will bring it forth”.

7. What are the acts of courage as mentioned by Luqman? 
The acts of courage as mentioned by Luqman are: 1. Offering Salah perfectly 2. Enjoining the doing of what is right 3. Forbidding the doing of what is wrong 4. Bearing whatever befalls in one’s life with patience and steadfastness.

8. What types of people Allah does not like? 
Allah does not like the people who are proud and boastful, who turn their cheek away from people in scorn and who walk haughtily on earth.

9. What simile is mentioned to drive home the importance of being modest in talking?
The simile that is mentioned to drive home the importance of being modest while talking is that of a donkey: Surely the most repulsive voice is the voice of the donkey!

10. List out the Advices of Luqman to his son:
1. Do not associate others with Allah
2. Be kind and respectful to your parents
3. Be grateful to Allah and your parents
4. Be conscious of Allah. Know that He is well aware of all things.
5. Offer prayers perfectly
6. Enjoin the doing of what is right
7. Forbid the doing of what is wrong
8. Have patience and adopt steadfastness in whatever befalls you
9. Don’t be arrogant, haughty & boastful
10. Walk modestly
11. Lower your voice. Know that the worst of all voices is the voice of a donkey!


A. Check-up:
1. What is man created from?
Man is created from sounding clay.
2. What is the best of all gifts?
Faith (Iman) is the best of all gifts.
3. What is the real source of moral courage?
Allah is the real Giver. He can grant us victory or withhold it from us. Trust in Allah frees man from all sense of dependence on other influences and powers. When he knows that all the bounty is in the Hand of Allah, the believer is fears none but Allah. The real source of moral courage, therefore, is Faith and Trust in Allah.
4. Mention some of the qualities of a true believer.
A true believer never worries about the future as he knows very well that only Allah can help him or harm him. He trusts Allah completely. He is full of confidence. When he undertakes any task, he fulfils it with sincerity and interest. He doesn’t gives up hope and doesn’t despair of the Mercy of Allah.
5. What is Jihad?
Striving against evil is Jihad. Once Allah’s Messenger described man’s struggle against his own desires and weaknesses as the greatest Jihad.
6. What is the importance of Jihad in the life of a Muslim?
Life is a continuous struggle against evil. A Muslim has to fight against evil of all forms. A Muslim apart from avoiding mischief and violence has to ensure that truth and justice prevails in the society. A Muslim cannot sit with hands tied when evil is rampant. The importance of Jihad is such that a Muslim cannot give up Jihad at any point in his/her life. It has to continue until one’s last breadth.
7. What is the weakest of faith?
The feeling that something wrong is happening in the society and that one cannot help in stopping it, is the weakest of faith.
8. Who was Umayr bin Abi Waqqas? What was his heart’s desire?
Umayr bin Abi Waqqas was a young boy of sixteen, whose heart’s desire was to participate in the Battle of Badr and attain martyrdom (to become a shaheed in the way of Allah)
9. Why did Allah’s Messenger ask him to return?
Allah’s Messenger asked him to return because he was too young to take part in the Battle.
10. Saffiyah was very courageous woman. Discuss.
Hamza was a brother of Saffiyah. He had taken part in the Battle of Uhud and was killed. His body was badly mutilated. Aware of the sad news, she came to the spot and witnessed the mutilated body of her brother and also prayed for him. This incident clearly shows that Saffiyah was a woman of great courage. Had it been otherwise, she would have burst into tears!
11. Real courage does not dwell in physical strength. Explain.
Moral decisions are not always easy. One has to weigh a few facts before one can decide what is truly the right thing to do. In addition, if one prays to Allah, He will give the gift of right judgement. In truth, courage does not dwell in physical strength. It comes from a strong Faith in Allah.
B. Check-up:

1. What is the value of keeping promise in our life?
Keeping up promises is the mark of a true Muslim. It is one of the noblest qualities in individuals and groups. It is the key to success in this life and the Hereafter. Keeping promise is enjoined upon Muslims.
2. What is the trait of a hypocrite?
One of the traits of a hypocrite is that he breaks the promise whenever he makes one.
3. There is no importance of promise in sin. Explain.
Fulfilment of a promise is essential. But one should keep clearly in mind that promises made in connection with something sinful have no sense or value in them. There is no value attached to a promise in sin. No pledge is right and proper except in rightful things.
4. On what two factors does keeping promise depend?
Keeping promise depends on two factors: memory and determination.
5. What are the two obstacles in the way of keeping promise?
Deficiency in memory and lack of firm resolve are two obstacles in the way of keeping promise.
6. What lesson should we draw from the story of the three men?
One should not forget one’s past. One should think how one was in the past and how Allah changed the condition for good. The feeling of being ever grateful to Allah must form an essential part of a Muslim’s life. Allah takes away all the blessings from the life of a person who is ungrateful unto Him.
7. Can a Muslim be a liar?
Lying is a sign of a hypocrite and a Muslim can never adopt hypocrisy in his/her life!
C. Check-up:

1. Modern civilisation has failed to provide peace to the mind. Explain.
There is no doubt that the modern civilisation has raised the standard of our living. It has provided comfort and ease to people. In spite of all these, modern civilisation has miserably failed to provide peace to the mind. The reason for this one-sided development is that the modern civilisation is built upon materialism. Power, status and wealth are considered to be the criteria of one’s success. Religion and spirituality is thrown to the winds. Islam is a natural way of life which lays emphasis on the both on material as well as spiritual aspects of man. Real peace and contentment can only be attained through the belief in the Oneness of Allah.
2. What is the fruit of reliance on Allah.
Reliance on Allah enables the believer to face the darkest situations of life. It fills his heart with a sense of peace and security which many people are deprived of.
3. What is death to a Muslim.
The believer’s thinking is clear concerning death. He believes it is not given to any soul to die, except by Allah’s leave, at an appointed time. Wherever we may be, death will overtake us!

ABU BAKR AS-SIDDIQ رضي الله عنه

1. What was the title of Abu Bakr رضي الله عنه ?
As-Siddiq (one who testifies to the truth) was the title of Abu Bakr. He was also called as Saniyasnain (second of the two)
2. What was Abu Bakr’s birth name? Why did Allah’s Messenger change it?
His birth name was Abdul Kabah and the Messenger of Allah changed it to Abdullah as it is shirk to call someone as Abdul Kabah which means slave of Kabah.
3. Why was he called Atiq?
Abu Bakr was called as Atiq because of his handsome personality.
4. Who was the father of Abu Bakr رضي الله عنه ?

Uthman, with the surname of Abu Quhafah, was his father.
5. Who was his mother?
His mother was Salma bint Sakhar Ummul Khair of the clan of Taym.
6. When did Abu Bakr رضي الله عنه accept Islam? What was his effect on the Makkans?
He was the first among the adult males to embrace Islam in the early days of the Prophet’s career. As he was very popular in Makkah, the town of Makkah was indeed shaken with wonderment at the news of his acceptance of Islam.
7. What first crisis appeared in Islam?
The news of death of the Prophet had sent shocking waves across Madinah. Shaken with sorrow and confusion, the companions ran to the Masjidun Nabwi where a pointless debate ensued and threatened to a take serious turn. The love and affection had made some to think that the Prophet could not die. Emotions were running high as there was the fear of a possibility of creating discord among Muslims by the hypocrites.
This was the first crisis that appeared immediately after the demise of the Prophet.
8. What part did Abu Bakr رضي الله عنه play in dissolving it?
The role played by Abu Bakr رضي الله عنه  in dissolving the first crisis is remarkable indeed. The passionate speech that he delivered settled the matter one and for all. He said, “O men! Whoever has worshipped Muhammad let him know that Muhammad has died. But whoever worshipped Allah, let him know that Allah is Ever-Living and never dies.” He then recited the relevant verse from the Qur’an. After that, all confusion about the Prophet’s death was over. Abu Bakr’s memorable words had dissolved the crisis.
9. What speech did he deliver after his election as Caliph?
Abu Bakr رضي الله عنه  said, “I have been given authority over you, although I am not the best of you. If I act well, help me; and if I do wrong, set me right. Sincere regard for truth is faithfulness, and disregard for truth is treachery. The weak among you shall be strong in my eyes until I have secured his rights, if Allah will; and the strong among you shall be weak in my eyes, until I have secured from him the rights of others, if Allah will. Obey me as long as I obey Allah and His Messenger.”
10. Name some of the slaves set free by Abu Bakr?
Bilal ibn Rabah, Amir ibn Fuhayrah, Abu Fukayhah, Zanira al Rumiyyah, Lubaynah and Umm Ubais were some of the slaves whom Abu Bakr set free.
11. Why did Umayyah bin Khalaf treat Bilal so cruelly?
Umayyah bin Khalaf treated Bilal so cruelly because Bilal had abandoned idol-worship and embraced Islam.
12. How did Bilal become free?
When Bilal was being mercilessly treated by his master, Umayyah bin Khalaf, Abu Bakr took pity on him, paid his master a huge amount, released him and set him free.
13. What did he contribute at the time of the Battle of Tabuk?
He contributed all his wealth at the time of the Battle of Tabuk.
14. What did Abu Bakr رضي الله عنه say to his son after the Battle of Badr?
During the time of the Battle of Badr, Abu Bakr’s son Abdur Rahman was in the opposite camp. But sometime after the Battle his son embraced and during a talk he remarked, “Father, you had once come within my striking range in the Battle of Badr but my love for you paralysed my mind and action”. To this Abu Bakr replied, “If I had that chance, I would not have spared the unbeliever”.
15. Who were the false prophets against whom Abu Bakr fought?
Tulainah, Musaylamah, Malik bin Nuwairah, Aswad Ansi and a woman called Sajah.
16. How long did Abu Bakr’s رضي الله عنه Caliphate last?
 Abu Bakr’s رضي الله عنه caliphate lasted for two years, three months and ten days.