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May 9, 2004
Mile 7: Jasmine Dew

by Saima Siddiqui

Yes, I'm starting this journal today. I guess it'll help me since my best friend has left for Umraah. I'm so happy for her. May Allah give her the best of everything. I asked her to make dua for me there... where the soul speaks.

It's been 2 weeks since his janazaa. So many people were there. It was Jumu'ah. He even got a police escort from the masjid. There was peace in his face. I had pictured my whole life with him right down to the picket fence and the color of each child's eyes and to the style of their recitations. In one blink, it was gone. Not that it had begun, but I'm so stupid to have thought about it. So stupid.

His mom has great sabr.

Ya Allah, If I didn't have you, I don't know what I would have done now. In every sajdah, in every rukuuh, my longing for you increases. O Allah, help it to keep increasing. I know me only through You.

You know Allah, it could have been worse. I could have been married to him and then he could've been taken back after maybe 2 days, or 2 weeks, or 2 months, or 2 years. And what if it were 20 years? I would have been emotionally hurt... a big test... You really had Mercy on me ya Allah. Alhamdolilah.

Alhamdolilah.

Ya Allah, I did not see that truck cross over the divider. My car got totalled. But,

Alhamdolilah.

Alhamdolilah.

Ya Allah, I seek refuge in You.

Ya Allah, bless my friend who You used as a tool to help me better myself and to show to me that sincerity does exist.

You brought me out from the depths of an ocean towards light... You alone showed me that flickering tubelights exist with peace pits and men with confident hayaa. Through the night you have changed me, and my life and my everything. This tear, like the dew on a jasmine blooming in the night.

THE END


of and relating to...
Talal said

MashaAllah...
Her reliance on Allah comes across in such a beautifully humble way.

on May 9, 2004 12:24 AM
Justoju said

"In every sajdah, in every rukuuh, my longing for you increases. O Allah, help it to keep increasing. I know me only through You."

Beautiful mashaAllah. One is only blessed to love Allah, Glorious and Exalted, when He loves them first. We cannot make a single dua to Him without His first wanting us to. Our feelings towards Him mirror His feelings towards us. We are so lucky He is All-Merciful and doesnt treat us the way we treat Him.

May we all increase in fragrance as the dawn approaches.
WasalaamuAlaikum

on May 9, 2004 2:13 AM
Justoju said

This is for all of you...


1st Annual Literary Muslim Literary Arts Competition

For a thousand years the Islamic Civilisation was the undisputed centre of learning. The torch of knowledge shone bright from within these lands, illuminating the world with its passion for the art of learning. The Islamic civilisation has left us with a heritage so rich, that its traces are still clearly visible today. The inspired
literature of the time continues to infuse the hearts of people, even after we have forgotten the virtues of the literary arts. The universality of values in our divided world needs to be treasured and promoted, literature provides the perfect arena for this. A simple short story or poem has the proven ability to reach a kaleidoscope population, traversing from nation to nation, transcending cultural boundaries and norms, to leave authors and their recipients with a sense of achievement that they have indeed transgressed in to a realm of universality and shared inspiration.

The London Learning Trust (LLT) was established in 2002 with the aim of reviving the love of learning and the pursuit of knowledge. In line with this primary aim the LLT launched its 1st Annual Literary Arts Competition on the 1st May, 2004. The competition will help to provide a much needed forum for the youth to express their creative talents to wider audiences. Despite the illustrious and irreplaceable legacy of the literature which precedes us, there will always be a need for more.

The competition aspires, in the first instance, to motivate individuals to write and to be introduced to the pleasures of literature and in the second instance, to identify the undoubted but unknown talents that surely must exist in our ranks today.


Competition Details:

• The competition is divided into two categories:
o Poetry
o Prose (creative fictional writing)

• There are two age bands:
o 11 – 16 years
o 17+ years

• Each entry will be charged at £3, this is to cover the
administrative costs involved in running the competition (The LLT is
a not for profit organisation).

• Prizes will be awarded for 1st and 2nd place in all
categories and age bands. There will also be additional cash prizes
for overall winners of the poetry and prose competitions.

• The closing date for entries is the 27th August, 2004

• The prize-giving ceremony will be held in London on 26th
September, 2004

For more details please see http://www.ymuk.net/


on May 9, 2004 4:22 AM
Saima said

some themes of this series:

1. knowledge for the sake of Allah
2. modesty/humilty and reflection of it
3. small kindnesses
4. reflecting on the signs of Allah
5. divine wisdom
6. reliance on Allah
7. marriage for the sake of Allah
8. stereotypes of muslims by muslims (dont tell me that you didn't think these 2 girls were flaky in the 1st mile) :)
9. worship
10. sincerity
11. trust

I request all of you to re-read the introduction again :)

on May 9, 2004 7:35 PM
Justoju said

7 days that complete a week.
7 levels of heavanly Creation.
7 miles.

on May 9, 2004 9:13 PM
Saima said

u rock.

on May 9, 2004 9:25 PM
Justoju said

You are making it entirely much too hard for me to love you more than I love myself :)

No. YOU rock

(man I feel like such a girl. "You rock!" "No YOU rock!" "No no YOU rock!" "No really, YOU ROCK!" :) )

MashaAllah, you have incredibly impressive themes and superb illustration. I really hope you enter the literary competition inshaAllah.

on May 9, 2004 10:08 PM
Faisal Akhtar said

I must say the conclusion of this series was well wroth the wait. Thankyou for a wonderful series Sister Saima and don't be a stranger to Hidaya.

Wasalam

on May 10, 2004 12:30 AM
Bint Abdul Khaliq said

As Salaamu Alaikum

Mashallah,beautiful 7 miles! May ALLAH reward you,there are many lessons to learn from it.

Was Salaam

on May 10, 2004 2:05 PM
Saima said

Alhamdolilah.

Insha'Allah, I hope this has helped at least 1 person make a difference or see a difference in their lives. I graduated from rutgers about 2 years ago and you know, it's very different now. You have a lot more opportunities in college to change yourself, to make priorities, and to redirect your focus towards our Creator. Many people achieve this easily through the support of their family, and for many people, it's not so easy. And sometimes, those that were in the muslim boat from day 1 take for granted that for others, Islam is really about sacrifice and establishment of priorities even when it may go against people that you love.

We should all realize that there is someone looking up to us. And we are all examples whether we like it or not and whether we know it or not. For the sisters, a sister may walk in with a hijaab on and not so modest clothing.. maybe its the first time she has taken the courage to wear hijaab. Maybe your smile or your welcoming nature will attract her to your own qualities that she will inevitably see that is to please Allah subhanawataalaa.

Establish yourself as the example. Not for yourself, but for Allah. Realize that He may use you as a tool to bring hidaya towards someone else.

Please do not judge others before you judge yourself. Believe me, one can feel it in the air if its a welcoming atmosphere or not.


May Allah lead us all on to the straight path.

I think this week will be my last week on hidaya.. i'm moving and also getting ready for wedding preps in June insha'Allah.

JazakhAllahu khayr,
As-salaamu alaikum :)
Sr Saima Siddiqui

on May 10, 2004 11:02 PM
Talal said

Ummm...
Why are people so eager to make sure their "departures" from Hidaya are permanent?

You know it's alright to visit in your free time and take some free, delicious Hidaya for the soul. It's not yet considered Haraam, alhamdulillah.

Besides, you won't wanna miss The 'Aroos finally Kill Talal.

on May 10, 2004 11:39 PM
Saima said

cuz if we're fortunate, we get addicted to things that are good... and when we realize that we're addicted.. we try to get whatever we got out of the addiction and try to apply it in life.

and then also, the flavor of hidaya would be enhanced with new writers and new perspectives. some times it takes people to leave for others to come in.

on May 11, 2004 10:39 PM
Justoju said

sometimes when people dont get what they are addicted to they go through a withdrawal. Sometimes people get addicted to Prozac. And then sometimes, there are those cases where food gives you heartburn and you wish you had gone for the plain rice with lentils instead.

(just doing my part to make these metaphors all the more confusing)

Saima, who are you kidding. You know you arent leaving. No one leaves.

on May 11, 2004 11:01 PM
Saima said

I think when i dont have internet connection for 1 full week... it'll break the habit. then, after that 1 week is up, i'll probably be so engrossed in the other things (wedding stuff) that i wont realize that i havent gone on hidaya for x amount of time.

but as always, Allah knows best :)

on May 11, 2004 11:24 PM
Justoju said

"mujhay tum nazar sai girra tho rahay ho
magar tum kabhi bhi bhula na sako gai"

just wanted to add some oldschool desi drama to this heartbreaking scenario...

I dont know why this stuff wont get out of my head.

on May 12, 2004 12:49 AM
Justoju said

oh wait, cuz I reinforce it by using it...THAT MAKES SO MUCH SENSE!

So really, what I need to do to get this useless hindu garbage out of my head is to stop using it! Why didnt anyone tell me it was so simple?

This is great, I feel like I am about to embark on a whole new hindu-brainwashed-culture-free life. Thanks Hidaya!

on May 12, 2004 1:02 AM
Faisal Akhtar said

Getting ready for wedding preps? Mashallah. Congrutaltions Sister Saima and our Duas are with you.

on May 12, 2004 2:08 AM
Justoju said

Saima, get your husband to start writing for Hidaya too. Then no one will need to leave and everyone will be happy!

on May 12, 2004 3:02 AM
Saima said

:)

on May 13, 2004 7:37 PM
Nadia said

Assalam u alaikum,
Congratulations Sr.Saima. Jazakallah khair sr. for rewarding us with such beautiful "series" before embarking on your wedding journey, Inshallah it will help you in your journey definitely :)
And Sr.Justoju,as to your remarks about "So really, what I need to do to get this useless hindu garbage out of my head is to stop using it." I hope you don't think that, ""mujhay tum nazar sai girra tho rahay ho
mujhe tum kabhi bhi bhula na sako gai" is hindu stuff, because it is a beauuutiful ghazal by an urdu poet, most probably Pakistani. hehe. But if you were talking about something completely tangent, forgive me please and don't think i am "hypersensitive" :)

on May 13, 2004 11:30 PM
Justoju said

AssalamuAlaikum,

Sr. Nadia, you arent being hypersensitive at all and your comments were valid :). I should have been more clear...

Many of us (me first and foremost) grow up hooked on desi movies, ghazals, and songs. We listen to unhalaal music using unhalaal instruments. Songs that call towards duniya, disobedience and heedlessness. We watch things without giving heed to the quranic injunctions regarding the lowering of gaze. We ignore the fact that not only is it not ok to commit a sin yourself, but it is also unhalaal to watch someone else commit it. We allow ourselves to be flooded with unislamic themes and fantasies. We allow ourself to be brainwashed by alien sunnahs and let them desensitize us. And then we wonder why it is so hard to be obedient and to have khushoo' in prayer...

What it ends up doing is creating a lot of 'noise' in our head and makes our deen a lot harder for us. We must stop inviting an unislamic culture into our head. We must stop letting ourselves get distracted by plots and themes that work to contort our sense of Reality. We lose focus on the purpose of existence. They implant unislamic ideals of what should be desired in our minds. They serve to give us hopes, fears, and false expectations of love, happiness, beauty, success, and duniya. As Sheikh Hamza says, they serve to make us part of the machinery of kufr.

I stopped the movie/music a while ago and it helped A LOT but I STILL have a lot of indian/american movie/music residue in my head. Some stuff is hard to get out of your system and it takes time for it to fade. Do you know how much of the Quran I could have memorized in those hours I spent listening/watching/dancing and playing antakshari? How much I could have benefitted my community or even just prayed in my room? How much dhikr I could have done? How much dawah could have been performed? I could have been in a much better place. I dont know if my last words before death will be the shahada, or "humay tum nazar sai..."

These leftover lyrics and lines that are in our head are markers of moments spent in blissful heedlessness and ghafla of the Divine. They are signs of our allowing ourselves the enjoyment of the unhalaal. Given that the purpose of our lives is obedience, these moments are those when our existence was pointless and without purpose. These things are mood alterers and can totally change your state of mind. You know, the thought of a certain song or "tv moment" still evokes in me the emotions that it did years ago. That song that I would listen to over and over again when I was 12 and had my first experience with an unrequited 'crush'. The music that I would use to drown out my pain when I was sad. The rhythms I would turn to to create a mood of excitement in my life. At every step, I turned to music to deal with my emotions and not to my Creator. It is a very powerful force.

Now think, if you could use this powerful force to bring you closer to Allah (Glorious and Exalted) and His Rasool (may He bless him and give him peace)...you CAN with qasidahs/nasheeds and qirat. You CAN with naats and hamds. Music that calls towards obedience, consciousness, and love for the deen. That calls one and charges one for fulfilling ones purpose. This force can be used for good...as can most things that He has put at our disposal.

SO THAT is why I have a bit of disdain in my heart for some forms of entertainment.

And again, you are sooo not hypersensitive :) . I am sorry if 'I' went on a hypersensitive tangent.

WasalaamuAlaikum

on May 14, 2004 1:24 AM
Nadia said

Assalam u alaikum Sr.Justoju,
Mashallah, you should make this response a topic of your column because I think it is greatly needed. I totally agree with all your comments, I think most of the movies create a drama that is so unrealistic and fill our head with a "noise" that is completely contrary to what is Real and Islamic. Alhamdulillah, I have cut down on movies/music a lot myself and it has definitely helped me. But I still like to read English and Urdu poetry/literature at times, because i cannot help but appreciate their beauty. I will have to admit that they have taught me a lot of empathy and have given me some great life lessons. I actually thought that all kinds of poetry are unislamic, but through Hidaya, I have realized that there can be poetry which is solely for Allah(swt). So while I dedicate all my words to Him but I cannot deny that I got the ability to do so by reading other kinds of poetry/literature. However, I absolutely agree, there is so much more that I need to discover about my religion and I should not be wasting in such activities. May Allah(swt)help me make the best use of my time. Ameen

Jazakallah khair sr. once again for writing such wise words, you should think about it making it a topic of your column because by completely killing music/movie syndrome, Mashallah you are at a position to tell others how has it helped you and changed your life and brought you to closer to Allah(swt). Inshallah it will help all of us as well :)

on May 14, 2004 9:09 AM
Faisal Akhtar said

Assalam-o-alaikom.

For those of us who like poetry and beautiful language, we need not look any further than the Quran. Read Surah Rahman about which even a non-Muslims (Who was trying to refute the truth that is Islam) said "...another one of the most beautiful verses of the Quran...". One of the reason I want to learn fushah Arabic is because I really love poetry whether it is Iqbal, Ghalib or any other poet. I find that this kiind of poetry (such as those of Ghalib which focus completely on women and Ishq and other useless things) has no benefit. That poetry stirs the heart but not towards something beneficial.

The Ghazal sister Justoju mentioned is a very beautiful Ghazal but it is rather pointless (don't kill me sisters). It does stir the heart but if you think about it, what does it mean? What does it imply? Translate it into English and the beauty is lost. However, if we translate the Quran into English, the poetic nature of the verses maybe lost, but the message remains intact.

This is to all people who are fans of poetry. If you don't know the Quran and you don't understand how beautiful it really is, you are missing out on the most beautiful piece of literature ever written. So learn fushah Arabic and the the beautiful verses of the Quran will stir your heart far more than any poetry ever can.


Wasalam

on May 14, 2004 5:07 PM
Justoju said

To bro. Faisal: True Dat

Also, there exists a large body of poetry in Urdu, Arabic, AND english that focuses on love for the Divine and makes ones heart focus on ones slavehood. Poetry, like all other things is a medium--not inherently good or evil. It all depends on how it is used. There are some ghazals that deal with ishq-e-ilahi that make my heart yearn to be a stronger muslim. But again, one must make sure of three things:

1. There are no unlawful instruments used.

2. Men are not listening to a non-mahram woman singing.

3. One is sticking to one's Quran and Hadith wird. Before we can give ourselves permission to listen/read anything else, or do any voluntary dhikr, we must make sure that we are giving ourselves a consistent dose of Quran and Hadith everyday. We must prioritize our reading/listening time inshaAllah.

A sheikh I know does not allow his students to do any 'extra' dhikrs until they have put themselves on a consistent diet of Quran and Hadith and have perfected their prayers. Nafl's that are performed at the expense of one's fardh are unwise and put one 20 steps backward for every step forward one takes.

WasalaamuAlaikum

on May 14, 2004 7:47 PM
Faisal Akhtar said

Assalam-o-alaikom

Wanted to correct a mistake in my previous post

"If you don't know the Quran and you don't understand how beautiful it really is, you are missing out on the most beautiful piece of literature ever written."

The Quran was definitely not written, it was revealed. One simple slip can change an elemnt of belief.

Wasalam

on May 14, 2004 9:43 PM
Saima said

and the verse in Surah Nur...

24:35 Allah is the Light of the heavens and the earth. The Parable of His Light is as if there were a Niche and within it a Lamp: the Lamp enclosed in Glass: the glass as it were a brilliant star: Lit from a blessed Tree, an Olive, neither of the east nor of the west, whose oil is well-nigh luminous, though fire scarce touched it: Light upon Light! Allah doth guide whom He will to His Light: Allah doth set forth Parables for men: and Allah doth know all things.

SubhanaAllah.

on May 17, 2004 10:40 PM
gillette said

the story was sent out on an e-mail list, and i just read it. i wanted to put it back in "noisemakers"

on December 25, 2004 8:40 AM
sabah said

I know this comment is delayed but I really wanted to share some thoughts.

Subhan Allah, Masha Allah... A story of true patience and valor. How easy it is to lose a loved one, to see something you planned before you be taken away. It makes us think twice before we even plan, before we think we know what will happen. The truth is, everything is in control of Allah. Each breath we take is only by His Permission, and it is he who can take that life away from us in an instant. Not only our lives are a test for us, but our loved ones, our family members, our friends are all trials for us through this journey in life.

Sabr is key, Allah is with those who are patient. And it is only through trust in Allah and truly intaking the reality that everything happens for the best can we stand through the best and most painful of times. That is the path to a peaceful existence.

A powerful ayah I thought I would share, "Or you think that you will enter Paradise without such (trials) as came to those who passed away before you? They were afflicted with severe poverty, ailments and were so shaken that even the Messenger and those who had faith with him said, ‘When will the Help of Allah come?’. Yes! Indeed Allah’s help is close!" (al-Baqarah 2:214)

Allah is always there even when you think you are in the deepest corners of the dark, it is He who is there overlooking and protecting His servants.

Just beautiful Saima. Jazak Allahu Khair. Love you fi amanillah.


Sabah

on February 20, 2005 12:19 AM
Hamid Baig said

As salaam o Alaikum Saima Siddiqui

I am in search of a girl whom I met in year 2000 in Rutgers University. I owe her some money. If you are the same Saima. Can you please send me your current address, phone number at hamid@mhbsecurity.com so I can send you your money.

Hamid Baig

on September 1, 2007 9:44 AM
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