Understanding Secular Education
Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem
By Hadhrat Moulana Abdul Hamid Is`haq Saheb (Daamat Barakaatuhum)
When I was lecturing at the Rand Afrikaans University, a professor, who was head of the department, mentioned to me, during a conversation:
“The day the Primary Level Religious Institutions (Makaatib) do not exist, the Muslim community will exist as a professional community and as a business community – but they will not exist as a Muslim community anymore.”
It was at that point that I realized the agenda and planning of the enemies of Islam. They were systematically trying to break down the structure of Dien, which had been established in South Africa. Their foremost effort was and is drawing the Muslims to their secular institutions – primary, secondary and tertiary – where they would further break down the individual’s Dien – until the mind-set, the lifestyle and the beliefs become secular! Then we would be Muslim in name, but not in identity and not in our outlook – perhaps not even in belief. …May Allah Ta’ala protect us all.
And this is what we see today: The modern secular-educated Muslim lives a life which is not aligned to the Qur’aan and Sunnah, in the true sense. There is a wide chasm created between the individual andtrue Islam. This is the effort of secularists in their quest to alienate all of mankind from religion.
For many, a modern and “moderate” Islam is accommodated, where the trends and whims of the non-Muslim society are also adopted. Many customs, which have no affiliation with Islam and which may even be prohibited, are legitimised. Intermingling of sexes, adopting the dress and the ways of the disbelievers, etc. are proof of the outcome of secular education. The Ulama are considered outdated and orthodox and are criticised for holding onto what has passed on from generation to generation of the pure and pristine Dien of Islam.
On listening to the professor, I understood that the university – and other such western secular institutions of learning – had a specific and detailed strategy to harm the Muslim community. I thus resigned from the post of lecturing.
It should be understood that worldly education is permissible in Islam. This is not objectionable. It is a fact that Muslims have been pioneers and forerunners in the field of science, medicine, mathematics, etc. They were great inventors. Their contribution to the progress and advancement of mankind is distinct.
The knowledge that is being rejected is that knowledge which deliberately aims at cutting man off from religion, from his Creator. And this is the knowledge which has been given the name, “secular” – by its architects.
If a person had to do a little research, then just the definition of secularism exposes the aim of secularists. Secularism is a system which removes and even rejects all forms of religious faith and worship. Secularism demands that religion – if it believed in – should be a private affair and not a public one – and that religion should play no part in education or politics.
Most secularists are themselves atheists.
One article also explained: “They (Secularists) think that religious schools are divisive (disruptive/incompatible), and damage the prospects of a harmonious and diverse society.”
So it follows that their efforts will be to eradicate religious institutions. This is being done by engrossing man in the pursuit of materialism, entertainment and anything that diverts his attention away from religion or wanting to be religious. Man thus becomes far removed from the religious institutions until he sees no need for religion and no need for such institutions.
The Darul Ulooms are the bastions, the strongholds of Dien. They are the forts of Islam. It is in the Darul Uloom that we find Dien being taught, comprehensively, meticulously and fully. The Ulama are the shields of Islam; they are a great means of protection for the Ummah, preserving Islam in its pristine purity.
The Maktab is the backbone of the Ummah and establishes a strong faith in Allah Ta’ala. Tauheed , Risaalat  and Aakhirat , which are the principles of Dien, are well-grounded in our children. This is what assists in making them firm Believers in Allah Ta’ala. …Wherever, in the world, there is no establishment of the Maktab system, the people there, easily lose their direction in Dien.
We see, in our own society, how the secular institutions – that is, the non-Muslim institutions of learning – keep our children occupied fully in everything other than religion. They have extracurricular and extramural activities. They have various events and functions which consume time. Our Muslim children are thus greatly hindered from attending the Maktab and Madrasah on a regular basis. In this manner, our children are kept away from connecting with Dien and improving in their Dien.
Parents look to give their children the best secular education; they may consider the prestige and status of attending such institutions, but sadly, they do not look at the repercussions to the Dien and Imaan of their children. And there is no doubt that this kind of education is at the great cost of our children’s Dien – if only we would take understanding. We are dealing with different cases and we are seeing the results.Huge amounts of money are being paid for the destruction of our children’s Imaan.
We may not see this today or tomorrow. Secularists have a long-term strategy. Over the twelve years of schooling and thereafter the years of tertiary education, they groom, they tutor and they prepare students in such a way, that when they complete their education or when they graduate, they leave the institution with a secular mind, with material aspirations and ambitions, and generally, with an aversion to religion – because religion is played out as a system that restricts, and secular education promotes freedom on every level.
They train them to fit into a western secular society, into a system where they are just pawns – used to support and strengthen the system, where religion is not allowed to feature.
Very recently, I met a young Muslim brother who is studying at a tertiary institution. In conversation, I enquired of him, what subjects he studied – and he mentioned history. So I asked regarding the history of mankind. He replied: “Darwin’s theory of evolution. We come from an ape…”
He honestly believed that his ancestors were apes or monkeys. When I asked him about the creation of the universe, he responded : “The big bang theory…”
Inna Lillahi wa inna ilayhi ra’jioon. These beliefs are in total conflict with Imaan and Islam. In fact, it is Kufr – because Allah Ta’ala has already explained the creation of man in the Qur`aan Sharief. Darwin’s theory is a rejection of the Qur’aan Sharief. Sadly, the brother did not see anything wrong with what he explained.
This is one of too many cases that we have dealt with. Many are Muslims from good Muslim homes but this secular education has indoctrinated in their minds, the false belief that they have evolved from a monkey or ape.
Today, Darwinism, evolution and the big bang theory are taught in pre-schools, in primary, secondary and tertiary institutions. These ideologies are impressed in the minds of our children and as a result, many Muslims are very confused in their beliefs.
Hadhrat Moulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi (Rahmatullahi ‘alayh) had said that the people censure and slate the Ulama regarding their stance on secular education. However, the Ulama are looking at the consequences of the modern secular curriculum and have therefore adopted this position. They are against that education which leads to rejection of religion and which leads to atheism.
Hadhrat Moulana (Rahmatullahi ‘alayh) had said that were we to take note of what is actually happening, we would observe that generally, the modern secular-educated people are unconcerned about Salaah, about maintaining the identity of the Muslim, and they do not heed the other commands of the Shari’ah. They may go against it, criticize it, and even proclaim Islam to be regressing and out-dated. Na’uzu Billah.
…Of course, there are some exceptions.
Those Ulama were blessed with foresight and understood the purpose of the introduction of western secular education.
Without Dieni education, the western secular system asserts and establishes an “Anti-God”, “Anti-Religion” frame of mind. And we should understand that without Dien and without Imaan, Jannat is lost.
The consequences are far reaching and extremely grave. The Hereafter is the destination and there are only two places of residence: Jannat or Jahannum.
The opportunity of this worldly life is not given to us to secure the worldly life – but it is to secure the Pleasure of Allah Ta’ala and salvation in the Hereafter.
Reflect for a while: What accompanies us when we depart from this world? With the exception of a shroud, none of our material possessions, no matter how beloved, will be taken with us. What will be taken are our deeds.
When the reality of death manifests itself and the door to the Hereafter is opened, then our worldly qualifications and degrees won’t matter, but our faith will be all that matters.
We need to prioritize here and now and without any delay, if we want the best of the next life – for ourselves and for our children.
May Allah Ta’ala give us the understanding. May Allah Ta’ala grant us the concern regarding our Dieni education and that of our children.
Source: Jamiat KZN
Prophetic gems for effective communication
THE BEST WAY TO COMMUNICATE
There are various ways in which a Muslim will find an effective way to communicate using direct contact. But there proves to be etiquette in doing so.
Here are 12 tips from the Sunnah for effective communication [Extracted from Productive Muslim]
- Smile: The Prophet (SAW) said:
“Your smiling in the face of your brother is charity.” [Jami` at-Tirmidhi] Before you start talking, smile! This is an instant ingredient to start any conversation positively and to remove any past ill feelings that could be present.
Smiling brings joy to the giver and the receiver (imagine being both!).
2. Pay attention to the tone and volume: Beware of your tone and the volume of your voice. Your tone determines whether you will make your relationship or break it. Any undesirable loudness in your voice could put people off and make any further attempts to communicate futile.
“And be moderate in your pace and lower your voice; indeed, the most disagreeable of sounds is the voice of donkeys.” [Qur’an: Chapter 31, Verse 19]
3. Start with the Islamic greeting of peace: Whether you know this Muslim or not, the greeting of peace or saying ‘Assalaamu alaykum’ (peace be upon you) is recommended. It will repel hatred and create love between you.
“A man came to the Prophet (SAW) and said: Peace be upon you! He responded to his salutation. He then sat down. The Prophet (SAW) said: Ten [rewards]. Another man came and said: Peace and Allah’s mercy be upon you! He responded to his salutation when he sat down. He said: Twenty. Another man came and said: Peace and Allah’s mercy and blessings be upon you! He responded to him and said when he sat down: and blessings be upon you! He responded to him and said when he sat down: Thirty.” [Sunan Abi Dawud]
Habituate yourself with saying the full and complete greeting and earn 30 rewards every single time you greet someone!
4. Shake hands: Accompany your greeting with shaking hands (if you are greeting your mahram or a person of your gender).
“There are no two Muslims who meet and shake hands, but they will be forgiven before they part.” [Sunan Ibn Majah]
- Inquire about people: Ask them how they are doing and inquire about their health and well-being and that of their family and friends. They will feel loved and cared for.
6. Remember not all are the same: Consider people’s different characteristics and differences while communicating. Keep in mind their age, status, temperament and other factors.
- Teach at every opportunity: The Prophet (SAW) used every chance to enjoin the good and forbid the evil. If there is ever a need for you to say something corrective in nature, do so gently.
8. Refrain from the common evils of the tongue: People getting together and communicating with each other often leads to falling into various sins related to the tongue such as talking about Allah without knowledge, slandering, lying, insulting and cursing. These habits are grievous sins that eat away at our rewards and the barakah in our lives: make it a habit to ensure whether anything you are about to say may constitute any of these sins. And, if you were to indulge in joking, let the jokes be true. The Prophet (SAW) said:
“A slave (of Allah) may utter a word which pleases Allah without giving it much importance, and because of that Allah will raise him to degrees (of reward): a slave (of Allah) may utter a word (carelessly) which displeases Allah without thinking of its gravity and because of that he will be thrown into the Hell-Fire.” [Sahih al-Bukhari]
9. Choose simple, concise words: Avoid complex language and sophisticated terminologies. Instead, try to stick to concise words and phrases that are of eloquence and seek to be understood. The Prophet (SAW) said:
“I have been given superiority over the other prophets in six respects: I have been given words which are concise but comprehensive in meaning” […] [Sahih Muslim].
- (SAW) spoke with clarity and made people comprehend easily, sometimes by even repeating his words thrice.
- Stay away from argumentation: Being nice is easy when you’re dealing with nice people. But, practically speaking, this world has more to it than such people. Despite your best efforts, you are bound to walk into not-so-nice people. Try not to fall into disputes and argumentation.
“And obey Allah and His Messenger, and do not dispute (with one another) lest you lose courage and your strength depart, and be patient. Surely, Allah is with those who are As-Sabirin (the patient ones, etc.).” [Qur’an: Chapter 8, Verse 46]
If you realize you are already in a dispute, be wise and argue with that which is better. Allah says:
“And not equal are the good deed and the bad. Repel [evil] by that [deed] which is better; and thereupon the one whom between you and him is enmity [will become] as though he was a devoted friend.” [Qur’an: Chapter 41, Verse 34]
If you find the argument going nowhere positive, stop before you get angry, smile and retreat after trying your best to reconcile for when a man said to the Prophet (SAW) “Advise me,” he said: “Do not get angry.” He repeated his question several times and again the Prophet (SAW) said: “Do not get angry.” [Bukhari]
11. End with the greeting: Before departing, smile, shake hands and greet people warmly with the salam.
12. In writing, start with Allah’s Name: If you were to communicate in writing, in addition to the points above that are relevant, it is desirable to start your written communication with ‘Bismillaahir Rahmaanir Raheem’ [In the name of Allah, the Continuously Merciful, the Especially Merciful]. This was done by the Prophet (SAW) numerous times when he dispatched letters to kings and heads of peoples and tribes.
If we follow these above sunnah’s in sha Allah, we will be able to communicate effectively. The importance of effective communication is one that should be taken very seriously so as to ensure that the message you wish to convey can be received as it was intended. Words are not lost in the process and miscommunications which are root of trouble are dispelled.
Source: Jamiat KZN
Who was the first man to write with a pen ?
Allah has praised Idrees(alaiyhis salaam) - Enoch, describing him as being a prophet and truthful. He is mentioned in the Qur'an:"Verily! He was a man of truth (and) a prophet. We raised him to a high station. (Ch 19:56-57 Quran).
Idrees(peace be upon him) -Enoch was born and raised in Babylon following the teachings and religion of Prophet Adam (pbuh) and his son Sheeth (pbuh). Idrees(peace be upon him) was the 5th generation of the Prophet Adam(pbuh). He was the contemporary of Aadam(pbuh) for 308 years and was the first to be made a prophet after him and Prophet Sheeth(pbuh).
He called the people back to his forefathers religion, but only a few listened to him, while the majority turned away. Prophet Idrees(peace be upon him) and his followers left Babylon for Egypt. There he carried on his mission, calling people to what is just and fair, teaching them certain prayers and instructing them to fast on certain days and to give a portion of their wealth to the poor.
It is reported that he was the 1st to invent the basic form of writing. Ibn Ishaq has mentioned that he was the first man to write with a pen.
Some of his wise sayings are:
*Happy is he who looks at his own deeds and appoints them as pleaders to his Lord.
*None can show better gratitude for Allah's favors than he who shares them with others.
*Do not envy people for what they have as they will only enjoy it for a short while.
*He who indulges in excess will not benefit from it.
*The real joy of life is to have wisdom.
Source: Ibn Kathir: Stories of the Prophets