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Wednesday, December 24, 2014

The So-called Birthday of the Prophet Muhammad Peace be Upon Him

The title of this post has likely implied my understanding of what is known as the Mawlid an-Nabawi, Mawlid Nabi, and even Eid Mawlid Nabawi. Whatever the implications, I will not explicitly state what I understand to be reality concerning this issue but rather I will elaborate on the issue itself, in a manner that is befitting of my level of my limited knowledge.

  • ALLAH only legislated two Eid's for the Muslims

    • An Eid is any annual celebration or festivity.
    • The prophet peace be upon him entered upon Muslims celebrating something other than the two legislated Eidayn (two Eids), which they had in their cluture; he peace be upon him informed them that ALLAH has only permitted the Eidayn that He legislated.
    • Other festivities that are held arbitrarily or those which are done as good things occur in one's life are permissible, but they should not be on the same calendar date every year. For example, a wedding celebration, celebrating the Aqeeqah, celebrating a new job, or a completed degree, etc.
    • Anyone and everyone's birthday celebration comes under the category of the linguistic meaning of the Arabic word Eid, and therefore is not permissible, because only the Eidayn are legislated by ALLAH and are exclusively permissible.

  • The prophet peace be upon him never mentioned anything about this day.
  • The historians of al-Islam do not agree on the date or even the month that the prophet peace be upon him was born.

    • There is not hard proof for when he was born (hijri); we only know that he was born on a Monday. Only his death-date (hijri) is known with certainty and is recorded.

  • Because he was born on Monday, he, peace be upon him, would fast on Mondays as part of is sunnah; he did not leave the issue of Monday in honor of his birth something open for the Muslim to venerate with acts of choice (i.e. celebrating). Rather, he established the option fasting on Monday as the sunnah for the Muslim to follow.

    • No other preference or recognition of the prophet's birth was ever present for the first 300 years of al-Islam. No companion every said anything about it, and none of us could love the prophet peace be upon him more than the companions did. ALLAH be pleased with them.

    There is more to say, but I am not qualified nor skilled enough to elaborate on it with justice. It has been mentioned by more credentialed and experienced educators in the English speaking world.

    Here is a good summary of the issue itself:

    Here is a more historical account of the history of the so-called Mawlid an-Nabawi

    Saturday, December 13, 2014

    What is so bad about Salafi People (a hypothetical question)?

    I really wanted to avoid using this word on my blog because of people's biases around it. However in the effort of dismissing stereotypes, it cannot be ignored, especially since it has become a topic of interest to non-Muslims. Have a listen to this interview with a former (more or less) associate of the movement. For a non-Muslim, or very lay, secular, or vastly westernized Muslim (and I seek refuge in ALLAH from being all three), this is quite accurate, but not appropriate for a Muslim who knows the religion well enough to make a proper distinction.

    For the Muslims, a better explanation is as below, and I personally endorse this understanding as a Muslim:

    Thursday, December 11, 2014

    Neglecting The Prayer

    It is accepted by Muslims that the Sallah is part of the religion. To what degree of importance is it? Is Sallah only for people who try to be good Muslims? Is it a basic for being Muslim? Can Sallah be trivialized? With as much flexibility as there is around performing the Sallah with concessions for different situations, is it appropriate for it to be skipped? In these times it can be said that we've seen and heard it all.

    The messenger of ALLAH, peace be upon him, said that Islam is built upon five pillars, and Sallah is one of them. The word for pillar in Arabic is Rukun, and the famous "five pillars of Islam", are the Arkaan of Islam. In Shari'ah, a rukun is something that is essential for something to be, analogous to a structure that needs a certain number of pillars so that it will not collapse. Without all of the Rukun of Sallah, the sallah is not sallah, and is void and unaccepted, and must be repeated properly. The same applies to a rukun of Haj. So what about a missing Rukun of al-Islam? There is question about whether a person with no Sallah is Muslim. It is a classical topic and one which deserves to be addressed.