Friday, March 11, 2011

Disasters... A Mercy from Allah

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I am sure this question must have come in your mind atleast once in your lifetime. It really is a very thought provoking question which tends to test our understanding of religion quite significantly. The recent earthquake that hit Japan might have brought this question back into people's minds. Its questions like these that often come in an atheist's head, and if not answered, can lead him or her even further from the true reality of the universe; the existense of the Most Merciful, the Most Compassionate, the One and Only God, Allah.

But Alhumdulillah, such questions have been pondered upon by scholars of the past. This precise question had been answered over 900 years ago in a very beautiful and logical manner by a great Islamic Scholar and Sufi, Abu Hamid al-Ghazali, in a book containing his commentary and explanation of the 99 Names of God.

Below is an excerpt from the chapter in which he explains the true essence of two of Allah's names; Ar-Rahman Ar-Rahim (the Most Merciful and Compassionate One).


A Question and Its Answer:


Perhaps you ask, "What is the meaning of God Most High being a compassionate one and His being the most merciful of all those who have mercy? No compassionate person who is able to remove disabilities can tolerate the sight of the afflicted, the one who suffers hardships and torments and the physically ill without using his power to deliver them from their disabilities. The Lord Most High possesses the ability of dealing with every affliction, staving off all poverty, relieving every illness and removing every hardship. The world overflows with illnesses, severe trials and tribulations. He is capable of removing all of them. Nevertheless, He leaves without help those of His creatures who are afflicted with calamities and sufferings."


Your answer is that the mother of the little child may feel tenderness for her child and protect him from the cupping (It is therapy used for purifying blood), whereas the wise father forced him to it. The ignorant person thinks that the mother is the compassionate one and not the father. But the wise person knows that the father's infliction of pain upon the child by means of the cupping belonged to the perfection of his mercy, sympathy and compassion, whereas the mother actually was the enemy disguised as a friend. He also realizes that a little pain is a blessing rather than an evil when it ultimately serves as the cause of great joy.


Ar-Rahim most certainly intends nothing but good for the object of mercy. All existing evil has some good in it. If that evil is removed, surely the good inherent within it will become ineffectual. Subsequently by means of the nullity of the evil itself, an even greater evil results. Since this is the case, even though the amputation of the leprous hand appears to be an evil, inherent in this act is ample good, namely, the well-being of the total body. Furthermore, if the amputation of the hand is omitted, the destruction of the entire body would ensue, and then (certainly) the (ultimate) evil would be greater. The amputation of the hand for the sake of the soundness of the entire body is an evil within which there is good. The primary intention behind the consideration of amputation is the well-being of the as such, and certainly this is genuine good.


Moreover, when a sound body cannot exist except by amputating the hand, then the way to health is the amputation. The soundness of the body is desired for its own sake, in the first place, whereas the amputation is desired for the sake of something else, in the second place, not for its own sake. Therefore, both are comprised in the volition. But the one is willed for its own sake and the other for the sake of something else. Undoubtedly that which is willed for its own sake has precedence to that which is willed for something else. For this reason God Most High says, "My mercy precedes My anger." His anger is His will to do evil, and the evil comes into existence by means of His will. His mercy is His will to do good, and the good comes into existence by means of His will. However, He wills good for the good itself, whereas He wills evil not for itself but rather for the good that is within it. Good is determined essentially , but evil is required accidentally. Both of them are predetermined, and there is nothing at all in that which is contrary to mercy.


Now if some kind of evil occurs to you in which you see no possible good, or if it occurs to you that the attainment of a good which contains no evil is possible, then be sure you suspect your mind of being inadequate in respect of one of these two notions.

The first is your view that this evil has no good within it. Surely this must be a part of that which the mind simply cannot understand. In this respect perhaps you are like the boy who considered cupping a pure evil, or the stupid man who considered killing in retaliation a pure evil. (The man) primarily considered the person killed, for whom, of course, the act was pure evil. However, he overlooked the general good accruing to the community as such resulting from the act. Such a person does not understand that the achievement of a general good by means of a specific evil is, in fact, a pure blessing. This (truth) the good (man) ought not disregard.

The second notion (to be held suspect) is your view that the attainment of good is possible without being involved with evil. Surely this (truth) also is subtle and obscure. The possibility and impossibility of everything possible and impossible cannot be apprehended by intuition and superficial examination. On the contrary, this can often be known only by deep, subtle thought of which the majority of men are incapable. This being the case, let your mind be suspect in respect of these two extremes and do not doubt that God is the most Merciful one of those who are merciful. His mercy always precedes His anger. Have no doubt at all that the one who wills evil for evil's sake, rather than for good, does not deserve the name "merciful". He is incapable of removing the veil that covers this secret, an uncovering which in his case is made impossible by evil. You must be content with faith. Do not covet the uncovering. You have been shown by a symbol and on allusion if you are one of his people worthy of it.

Consider this bit of poetry: "If the person you have been addressing were alive, you would have made him hear. But the one whom you have called is not alive." Certainly this is the condition of the majority of the people. But as for you, O brother, for whom this explanation is intended, I believe you are one of those trying to perceive and understand the secret action of God in respect of your destiny and therefore one who can dispense with these revolving thoughts and admonitions.

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All comments are highly appreciated.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Diabetes Mellitus "The Silent Killer"

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Read Full Article at: 
6 steps to manage Diabetes!


Peace!

Well i realized my diabetes article was too long and was taking up too much blog space. So i moved the entire article to a seperate stand-alone page on my blog. You can find the link manually at the top left of this screen under the header "Pages on this blog". I have renamed it '6 steps to manage Diabetes!'. Or you could simply click on the link i have given above and below. Sorry for any inconvenience, but this was necessary.


Read Full Article at: 

Friday, April 23, 2010

Loadshedding...

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Wow.... This is the lmit. 12 hours of loadshedding... Some areas are even suffering 20!  You gotta be kidding me..
Literally half of your entire day is without any electricity. How is one supposed to manage studying, or doing any other work for that matter, without what has now, in the modern age, become a basic necesseity of human life? Especially with the extreme heat due to summers these days (and killer blood-sucking mosquitoes), its quite unbearable.         

But if you've memorized the time when those agonizing, light-less hours of your day start and stop, you could optimize your time to the full and make sure your going to get those grades no matter what the world throws at you! For example, if you don't have all the past papers with you at home, you could probably save and print them from the internet when the light is there, so that when it isn't, you could do them easily without losing excess time. Organizing in your mind (or even writing down) what you are going to do each day, keeping in mind the times when you have electricity, you could really pull through with your studies (or anything else you want to accomplish).

As for me, well I am living in Karachi where loadshedding is only for 3 hours (where I live atleast) Alhumdulillah. Thanks to Sindh's thermal power stations which work relatively smoothly all year round. So I can only imagine what others are going through. Areas like Punjab and NWFP (Pukhtoon Khwah???? nah.. too racial in my opinion) depend mostly on Hydro-electric power which tends to fluctuate in different seasons. For those of you who don't know, electricity generated from these power stations depends on the speed and depth of the water in our rivers. So if a river is slow in some season, its going to produce lesser electricity. But despite all this, if you still get those straight A's... wow, I really admire your fortitude.

Just keep organizing and prioritizing you time and you'll be fine. Never forget to pray your namaz and keep making dua from Allah. He will ease all you troubles Inshallah. Do pray for me aswell.


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All comments are highly appreciated.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Burning the Midnight oil....

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Yes, i find it to be a vague expression aswell. But if you think about it, it actually makes sense because in the old days when you didn't have a simple filament lamp, and you had to study like there's no tomorrow, you had to burn alot of oil (and breathe in all the excess smoke) just to get some light to read.

I wonder how many of you prefer to 'burn the midnight oil' whenever you have a lot to study, but dont have much time. I'm sure alot of you do because when you are in such a situation, this seems to be the most viable option for making sure you have studied your subjects. Yes, we might feel extremely sleepy and drowsy at such times, but the amount of topics we might cover during it are quite worth it.

But what I really want to know is how many of you like to be the 'early bird who gets the worm' instead? (Yeah, another strange expression, but I think it makes more sense). Sleeping early, then getting up early aswell, might remind most of us of our dreaded school mornings. But the fact remains, it is the best time of the entire day for any activity you might want to take some time out for, and do.

First of all, getting up early gaurantees that you will get a chance to pray Fajr in the morning (something which, im sad to say, very few of us do). After that, what you get is a nice 5-7 hours of peacful, distraction-free time to do your studies/work. This is mainly due to the fact that everyone else in the house is most probably sleeping and also because you feel so fresh and energetic (unlike 'midnight studies' when you feel so sleepy, its hard to concentrate) you can study for a long while very easily. So once you're up in the mornings you can do anything you want, without ANY distractions what-so-ever. What you do with all that time is up to you though. Just try to make sure you are not wasting it.

By the way, this is not just opinion, but its a proven scientific fact. A study by researchers at Brigham Young University in Provo in the American state of Utah found that:

"students who habitually go to bed late and sleep late the next day have lower grade point averages (GPAs) than students with early-to-bed and early-to-rise sleeping habits.  The later students slept in the morning, the lower their grades tended to be.  Out of all the factors studied, weekday and weekend wakeup times had the strongest association with students' GPAs. Each hour over the average that students slept in on weekdays was associated with a 0.13-point drop on the GPA (0.0-4.0 scale)."
Source: Journal of American College Health 2000


The blessings of the early mornings are also mentioned in the following Hadith (saying of the Prophet Muhammad pbuh):

Narrated Sakhr al-Ghamidi (radiAllahu anhu): 
The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: "O Allah, bless my people in their early mornings." When he sent out a detachment or an army, he sent them at the beginning of the day. Sakhr was a merchant, and he would send off his merchandise at the beginning of the day; and he became rich and had much wealth.
{Abu Dawud}

This not only refers to spiritual blessings, but also to material ones. That's why whenever the Prophet (Sal Allaahu Alaiyhi wa sallam) sent out troops or an army, he would send them at the beginning of the day. But if we sleep late, we could lose out on the blessings and profits of this time.




I hope that now, you are convinced and will try to make a slight difference in your lifestyle. One which I am pretty sure will allow you to make the most of every day and help you achieve goals that you never could have before, especially when you are under some time constraints.


Feel free to laud, applaud, criticize, comment, question, react, express your views and bring new information to light in the comments section!
All comments are highly appreciated.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

What to study?? there's not much time...

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I would suggest just doing your past papers right now. I hope you have already studied all the topics during your mocks. If so, just focus on past papers. Plan your shedule on a calendar, alloting every day a different subject to practice.
For example, I have planned my studies according to the number of papers I have. Like chemistry has paper 1,2, and 4. In total, I have about 15 papers (14, if you count english as one). Therefore everyday, I will be doing my past papers for a specific paper of some particular subject.
That way, (if I stick to my schedule) I should be done with everything in 14 days. After that, I will still have a good 13 days to study whatever I want, or for that matter, to cope for any 'unexpected' events such as the field trip.
Also, while doing your past-papers, make sure to instantly turn to your text book or journal everytime you feel you dont remember some topic, just to make sure that by the end of the day, you were thourough in revising each and every topic.

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All comments are highly appreciated.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Exams! Don't get Distracted!!

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O-levels... the dreaded exams are finally so close.
Just 29 days till the May/June session officially starts.
Yea, have to study hard.. not going to get anywhere if i don't prepare for every exam.
Every day seems to just zoom by so fast, its difficult to realize how you're going to get enough time to study each topic of every subject. Then you also have to practice by doing your past-papers.
At times, its simply too much! How is one supposed to manage all that, as well as the need to eat, sleep and drink! Despite that, many of us (this is the case for me atleast), don't put in all the effort we should be. By playing video games, surfing the net endlessly, sitting on facebook, watching TV, making sure to watch every latest movie, etc, we are simply inviting our own doom. These are the types of distractions that we will be regretting once we get straight D's/C's (including B's, since most A-level institutions look primarily at the number of A's you got) in our O-level results. After that, all you would be doing is feeling guilty and hating yourself (which is really bad for your physical and mental health aswell) for not studying like you should have. You wont get admissions in good colleges either, which will seriously affect your education and has the potential to ruin your personality.By the time you finally apply for university, you'll have such a bad academic record, you wont get in anywhere decent, and will eventually end up with a boring, unsatisfying, low-paying job.
Oh and I don't even want to talk about the embarrassment amongst friends and family, aswell as scolding you might get from your parents for not studying properly, even after they provided you with all the things you could possibly need to acquire maximum grades in every subject.

So basically, leave that computer/laptop right now and get back to studying. Oh and forget the TV even exists. These distractions are just not worth it. A break everyone once in a while is fine, but don't overdo it.
Just work really hard and don't forget to pray your Namaz (yes, 5 times a day). Keep making Dua, Inshallah, you will be successful in all your goals.
Wish you best of luck in your exams!

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All comments are highly appreciated.

First Post

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Bismillah ar-Rahman ar-Rahim  
(I start) With the name of Allah, the Most Beneficient, the Most Merciful.