Dream Killers


How often in our lives do we come across people who are dream killers? You are over joyed, optimistic, positive about the future, explaining the good things you dream of accomplishing then a person or people say, that’s not possible. Your skills are not good enough. You are not cut out for the work. How could you possibly do it? Then negativity sets in and it sails through the currents that are strong enough to drown your dreams. Eventually, you give up! You throw everything away. Sometimes, even throwing away years of work and progress because someone would rather you be average. A C level player, when you know in your heart, in every breath you take, you are one of a kind, last of a dying breed, who just wants to succeed.

Dream killers come from every aspect of our lives. Sometimes, it is ourselves but many times, it is the people you surround yourself with. Can be your parents, your siblings or your “friends.” Who have aimed low all their life and cannot fathom you ever being able to accomplish your dreams. They’ve never seen such hard work nor have they seen someone who is not able to give up. They lack patience and they would rather results now, instead of them coming to fruition. They wish and I do mean, they wish, they had the same work ethic and drive as you. Soon enough, their envy, their hatred, negativity, failures in life, dreams set so low that it could be stepped over, crush yours.

One thing I’ve learned in life and Islam also teaches is to keep things to yourself. If you have a gift, don’t tell others about it. Don’t speak too highly about it. Keep your success and your goals to yourself. The Prophet Muhammad (peace & blessings be upon him) said: “Resort to secrecy for the fulfillment and success of your needs for, verily, everyone who has a blessing is envied.” [Tabaraani]

Not everyone is going to be overjoyed at your success or your dreams. Sadly, some people have two things these days. Sick hearts because they can’t bare the shine of your optimistic drive and positivity. And two, envy, thus leading to your dreams crashing when you don’t know why. The Prophet Muhammad (peace & blessings be upon him) warned us about envy and how it could it destroy someone and even kill someone, he said: “Don’t be envious of one another.”[Muslim] in another hadith a companion was afflicted with envy by another companion due to admiration and the companion fell to the floor. He did not know what happened and brought over the Messenger of Allah. In order to revive the man, he was told to do wudhu (ablution) and with that water, pour it over him.  Amir bin Rabi’ah passed by Sahl bin Hunaif when he was having a bath, and said, “I have never seen such a beautiful skin.” Straight away he (Sahl) fell to the ground. He was brought to the Messenger of Allah and it was said, “Sahl has had a fit.” He said, “Whom do you accuse with regard to him?” They said, “Amir bin Rabi’ah.” He said, “Why would anyone of you kill his brother? If he sees something that he likes, then let him pray for blessing for him.” Then he called for water and told Amir to perform ablution, then he washed his face and his arms up to the elbows, his knees and inside his lower garment, then he told him to pour the water over him (Sahl). [Ibn Majah]

It’s best to keep dreams, success and goals to yourself. Share them with only those whom you trust and are very close to you. Those who have been there for you through thick and thin. Who advise you with sincerity and goodness. Who want you to see you further yourself in life and when it is achieved they celebrate and become overjoyed with you and when failure occurs, they become sad with you and encourage you to keep going. This is what a true friend is and this is what someone who is not a dream killer.

Ibn Al-Qayyim – Don’t Be Sad

Back view of businessman with black umbrella and black cloud above

Ibn Al-Qayyim (may Allah have mercy upon him) said that the word sadness does not appear in the Qur’an except, in the form of forbidding it or form of negating it and the reason for this because there is no benefit for having sadness in the heart. The most beloved thing to shaytaan is to make the believing slave sad by taking him off track. The Prophet Muhammad (peace & blessings be upon him) sought refuge in Allah from sadness.

Ibn Al-Qayyim (may Allah be have mercy upon him) said, sadness weakens the heart and diminishes determination and wanting to go forward. And there is nothing more beloved to the shaytaan than the sadness of a believer. For this reason, be happy, optimistic and think good about Allah. Have trust in what Allah is able to do and depend on him. You will find happiness and pleasure in all situations. Ibn Al-Qayyim (may Allah have mercy upon him) also said, don’t ruin your happiness with worry and don’t ruin your mind with pessimism. Don’t ruin your success with deception and don’t ruin the optimism of others by destroying it. Don’t ruin your day by looking back at yesterday.

If you think about your situation, you’ll find that Allah has given you things without asking, so have trust in Allah that he doesn’t prevent anything you want except there is goodness for you. You could be sleeping and the doors of the heavens are being opened with du’aas (supplications) being made on your behalf, subhana’Allah, perhaps from someone poor whom you’ve helped or someone sad whom you brought joy or someone passing by and you smiled at them or someone in distress and you removed it, so don’t ever underestimate any good deeds.

One of the righteous predecessors said, I make du’aa to Allah for something I want and if He gives it to me, then I am happy once and if he doesn’t, then I am happy ten times because the first was my choice and the second was Allah’s choice. As-Sadee (may Allah have mercy upon him) said, life is short, so don’t shorten it with worries, grief and sadness, so be the owner of a heart that breathes happiness and satisfaction.

Be Not Stationary But Be Progressive



Lately, everyone has been sick due to the change in weather here in Toronto. We’ve had a really odd winter where the first half was pretty warm compared to last year. When I mean pretty warm, I mean really warm. Last year was insane! We had -45 degrees celsius weather. When you stepped outside even for a few minutes, if you had nose hair, it would freeze. This year, it’s been a breeze. You could wear a light jacket and walk around. Then the weather started being funny again these past couple of weeks. Warm, then cold, then very cold, then everyone gets sick. I am still currently stick with a throat infection. But, this isn’t about my sickness and the weather here in Toronto. It’s about something else.

My routine even though I’ve been sick, has been going to the gym and spending at least 2 hours almost every single day. Today, I met an individual who I see almost every time I am there. We talk for a few minutes, spot each other when there is a need and just talk about random things. He approached me as he entered the weight area and I seen that he had a very long face. It was really unusual for him to approach me without a smile and a “hey what’s up? What you doing today?” I read his face and I thought he was sick. I asked him and he replied, “I have cerebral palsy.” It really caught me off guard. He’s a really healthy looking person and even younger than me. He’s in his early 20’s so it did catch me by surprise how it ended happening to him. He said “the entire right side of my face is paralyzed, I can’t move it. I can’t even feel it.” I did feel bad for him but there isn’t much I could do.

I went closer to him and I told him, don’t worry about it. This is nothing. Look at you, every single one of your limbs work. You are able to come to the gym still and do what you love doing. To relieve stress, to relieve tension and to let go of this world and be in your own. Don’t let it hold you back. Keep doing what you love. Others have it worse than you, who have no limbs and still make use of themselves and still see the positive in it.

It was in that moment, he looked at me and said, “you’re right.” I seen the look of encouragement on his face. The look of disappointment was fading and I seen the confidence he once had, rise up again, as he loaded the bar for his squat routine.

What had happened to him, also gave me a reality check. There is no “too young” for anything. It could happen to any one of us. Our health is important but once we start getting sick or getting an illness, we start to remember how healthy we once were. The Prophet Muhammad (peace & blessings be upon him) said: “Take advantage of five before five. Your health before your sickness. Your youth before your old age. Your wealth before your poverty. Your time before you are preoccupied and your life before your death.” [Al-Hakim]

And even if we are sick, it should not hold us back from anything we want to do with our lives. Sickness is real and it could burden us and prevent us from a lot but it’s how we want it to actually paralyze us. If you think of any sickness and you think how bad you have it and you do nothing, it will actually destroy you. That’s why, in every moment of our lives, we need to take advantage of the things we have before us. Life is going to be an obstacle course. No one said it’s going to be easy. Your life isn’t going to be paved out a smooth road for you because eventually, that road needs to be paved against due cracks and breaks. It shouldn’t prevent us. Obstacles are a part of life and each and every single of us today is dealing with something. Some with money issues. Some with family problems. Some with depression. None of these things make us look down and hold us back.

Life is written in many various and mysterious ways. We don’t know what type of situation or life event will happen before us. No matter the obstacle, no matter the trials that befall us, we shouldn’t fall victim to these things. It’s all but a test for a major reward in life, if we want that reward. If we want to past that test and overcome these trials and tribulations, we must first remember our blessings. When we begin to remember our blessings, we remember less of what is taken away and what is actually before our eyes. Secondly, we continously progress with our lives. Not everything is going to go as planned. You may not get the car you wanted. You may not get into the university or college you dreamed of. This shouldn’t be a reason for you to stop progressing in life. Continue to progress with your life. If you continue to push yourself. If you continue to see yourself in a better position in life, you will be insha’Allah because you have a positive mindset. Persistence is a key to success. No one becomes a millionaire over night. Even lottery winners were persistent in winning  by paying money almost every single day to win the big one.

Whatever is going on in your life. Continue to push yourself in a better direction. You may not see the results now. Next week, in a few weeks, in a few months but you’re creating something with continued progression. You are actually fulfilling your dreams because you want it so bad by pushing towards it. Don’t ever let a sickness, depression, your skin colour, hijab, niqab or whatever it may be hold you back in life. You are the biggest obstacle and only you can overcome it with a positive mindset about tomorrow and what is to come.


Better Than Anything In The World



This particular matter that I am going to write about is an issue that most of the ummah (nation) think only is a speciality of ramadan. Yet, it’s such an important issue of ibadah (worship) that it will tell you if you love Allah and if Allah loves you. It is the matter of qiyam and tahajud (night prayer), also in ramadan called, taraweeh. It is the school of the richest people. Night prayer, qiyam, tahajud, is the tranquility of the believers. Night prayer and qiyam is the solution to your problems when you have a problem.

Many times you see those who claim to love Allah and the Prophet Muhammad (peace & blessings be upon him) and Islam. They’ll put it on their websites. They’ll click like on a Facebook. They’ll probably have a bumper sticker. But this will determine if they truly love Allah because Allah in the Quran says: “Is the one who is obedient to Allah, prostrating himself during the night time, fearing the hereafter and hoping for the mercy of his Lord, is he like those who don’t do that? Disbelievers or whoever doesn’t do that. Is he who knows like he doesn’t know?”

Allah is saying basically, don’t ever compare one who makes tahajud and qiyam with one doesn’t. Night prayer and qiyam is the best prayer after the five daily prayers. Night prayer and qiyam is the honour of the believer. Night prayer and qiyam is brightness on the day of judgement. Night prayer and qiyam is the characteristic of a believer, like Allah says in Surah Furqan:” And those who spent the night hours worshipping their Lord, bowing and prostrating to Allah, and standing.” Night prayer is the golden moments of the night time for those who long to be close to Allah to spend that time in privacy with Allah the AlMighty.

In Musnad Ahmad and Abu Dawud, Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) said that, the Prophet Muhammad (peace & blessings be upon him) said: “May Allah be pleased with a man who gets up at night and prays and then wakes up his wife, but if she refuses to wake up, he sprinkles water in her face.” And look at the other one. He says:” And may Allah bless a woman who gets up at night and prays, and then wakes up her husband, and if he refuses, she sprinkles water in his face.” Amazing hadith, Such a unique hadith, that encourages a family to worship Allah together and encourages each other. A family, a romantic family. She’s not waking him by forcing him nor is he, their consensus is that we both want to wake up. I dare a husband and a wife who does this consistently and faithfully for the sake of Allah and not have the happiest marriage ever! Prove me wrong and I am going to say, wallahi to it! If you are having marital problems, night prayer is your solution, get up, you and your wife. What affect will it on children in the future? Many times, children go astray even if you raise them well. However, one of the most memorable things a child takes with him, even years later and I can tell you this from my experience in dawah, they’ll say, ahh, wallahi you’re right. I used to always see my mother and father get up at the end of the night in prayer. It’s something that sticks to their mind that usually gets them back on the right track if they go astray.

The Prophet Muhammad (peace & blessings be upon him) said: “If a man gets up at night and prays (even two rakat), they will be amongst the zakireen.” [Abu Dawud]

Who are the zakireen? Flip the pages of the Quran to Surah Ahzab and you are going to see. “And those men who remember Allah and those women who remember Allah, Allah has prepared for them forgiveness and a great reward (high ranks in paradise).”

How beautiful is it to spend the night with Allah?

There are those who love to spend the nights flipping through the channels on their T.Vs. There are others who like to spend their nights browsing through the internet, hours and hours go by while they’re doing it. Some with girls and others with alcohol. And some with vain matters that are probably not haram or halal. Then there are those of the few of the few of the very few who truly love Allah and choose to spend their nights with Allah, the AlMighty. And rest assured, let me tell you this, the biggest indicator and hint to see if Allah loves you and if he’s pleased with you, see if you consistently pray the night prayer. If you consistently wake up for the night prayers, know you are in good status with Allah. Let me repeat because this is important. The biggest indicator of how pleased Allah is with you, is if you pray consistently the night prayers. It is only the special people who are allowed by Allah to spend those precious moments during the dark nights with Him.

A man told Ibrahim Ibn Adham, he said, “I cannot get up at night to pray. Why? I want to do qiyam (night prayer).” He said, “you commit the sins during the day, you will never be able to get up at night and pray.” Standing before Allah during the night time is an honour sinners are unworthy of. Sufyan At-Thawri (may Allah have mercy upon him) said, “for five months I couldn’t get up for the night prayer because of a sin I committed.” And if you look at the life of Sufyan At-Thawri, what could he have possibly done? A man, who is amazing in his character, in his ibdah, in his knowledge. A man came to Hasan Al-Basri and he said, “I sleep well, I rest well, I have no illness, I prepare the water by my mattress so I can get up for the prayer of qiyam but I never get up for qiyam.” So Hasan Al-Basri said, “your sins have shackled you. Your sins during the day, restrain you during the night time.” The rule is the sins of the day restrain a muslim from the honour of praying during the night time. Abu Jaffar said, “I went to visit Ahmad Ibn Yahya”, so he said, “I went and I’ve seen Ahmed crying.” Abu Jaffar said, “why are you crying?” Ahmed said, “I missed the night prayer.” He said, “that’s okay, Allah wanted you to rest.” Abu Jaffar said, “the more I tell you him and comfort him, the more he cries.” He said no, “it’s because of the sin I committed.”

Qiyam is responding to the call of Allah. How can you not respond to the call of Allah when Allah calls you? It was collected by Bukrahi, that the The Prophet Muhammad (peace & blessings be upon him) said: “The Lord descends every night to the lowest point of heaven, when the one third of the night remains. Is there anyone who calls upon me? Anyone who calls upon me so I can answer?” Allah is calling you as if He needs you and you’re the one who needs Allah? The hadith continues with Allah saying, “is there anyone who will ask me that I may give him?” People snore away as Allah is asking them if they need anything. The hadith continues with Allah still saying, “who may seek my forgiveness so that I may forgive him.” Qiyam must be an essential part of your life my brothers and sisters. It must be essential.

When Allah was preparing the Prophet Muhammad (peace & blessings be upon him) for the ultimate task ever, the guidance of humanity, what did he prep him with? He prepared him with the task of making tahajud fard (obligatory) upon him. This was fard in the early stages of the Prophet Muhammad (peace & blessings be upon him).

In order to be successful in any job, in any task, in any situation, you need to succeed during the night with your spiritual communication with Allah, that’s why Allah ordered the Prophet Muhammad (peace & blessings be upon him) to do that. You give parts of your life to yourself, to your family, to your work, we all give parts of our life, to school, to social events, we give parts of our life to leisure events, we give parts of our life to rest and comfort. Doesn’t Allah AlMighty deserve to be given a part of our life? And he should be given precedent and priority over everything!

Make the decision now. I say make the decision now. Make the oath now, make the pledge. From now on, I am going to pray qiyam to Allah the AlMighty.

Do it now!

By: Shaykh Ahmad Musa Jibreel