One of my friends needs help in making some serious decisions about this issue. I am not sure what to tell her.

If she had asked me this question before I got married, I would have given her a ‘good to go if the guy is religious.’ But now, that I am older and have matured more, I think there are many factors to consider in a marriage.

My husband is also Pakistani, so I can’t speak out of experience. But I have ‘heard’ about problems in inter-cultural marriages. Not to say that same culture marriages don’t have problems, but to be precise, cultural differences affect the marriage.

Sometimes, I think people take it too far. Like, in Pakistan people from one province will not marry off their daughters to a man from a different province because of ‘cultural’ difference, like Punjabis not marrying those who are from Northern part of the country or those who migrated and vice versa.

But sometimes, I also see the validity of taking precautions, like many of my friends who grew up here i.e. ABCDs, refused to marry just because the brother was a FOB! And their primary argument was that he would never be able to ‘understand’ them. But what about if both of them grow up here but come from different backgrounds, i.e. one is Arab and the other one is Pakistani, or Bengali, or Malaysian or an American?!

Why Arabs were special to Inherit the Best Prophet (pbuh)? (Seerah III) Monday, Feb 12 2007 

(this is a continuation of previous post)


Another aspect that made Arabia special was its people, Arabs. Although they had a lot of internal fighting and a lot of evil, still they had characteristics that made them, in general, better then other nations of their time. The evils they had of rape, plunder, women and wine, etc. all other societies were guilty of. All non-Muslim societies had these evils, including Romans and Sassinads. Do we presume, Romans were any less in drinking and womanizing?!

But Arabs had some characteristics that made them the best race in which to send a Prophet. Of these characteristics:

  • First and foremost, purity of spirit: They were living uncultured, even uncouth in a desert. They were not effected by sophistries of the philosophers nor by superstitious or ideologies of other religions. NO. They were illiterate race which means they were still pure and simple. So they could accept the religion of Islam much easier then the other religions. They wouldn’t be that tainted, or cultural impediment.
  • The Arabs were very brave, extremely courageous and they valued bravery.
  • They were also generous and this was something they inherited from Ibraheem (as). (Qur’an 51:21-34)

Ibraheem (as) was the first human being to show hospitality to guest. Before him it was not something known to offer food or drink to the guests. Ibraheem was the first one to start the beautiful sunnah of being hospitable, as the Qur’an mentions it too.

So, Arabs inherited this from Ibraheem. They would go hungry themselves in order to feed their guests. It was something very well-known.

  • Another good characteristic that they had was honesty. Abu Sufyan (before he converted to Islam) when he was being questioned by Heraculus about Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), he could have lied because at that time he was the enemy of Prophet Muhammad and hated Islam. Yet he said, “by Allah, if I could lie I would have but I was scared that my people behind me would have accused me of being a liar so I spoke the truth.’

He was a mushrik (pagan), the people with him were mushrkeen, they all hated Islam, but their hatred could not make them fall into the sin of lying. Look at that characteristic as a mushrik.

  • They were experts in horsemanship and arts of war of their time, archery, spears etc. and Muslim Ummah needed a generation like that as you know.
  • They were true to their promises. Even though they were mushrkeen, if they would give their words they would keep it. The famous story of AbdulMutallib, when he was about to be killed by his tribesmen for digging up and finding the lost well of zamzam, he made du’a that if Allah gave him 10 sons, he would sacrfice one of them in front of Ka’bah for Allah. Later, he was granted 10 strong sons by Allah but even 20-30 years after making that promise, he still remembered and kept his words. He had made that promise and he was going to live up to it. [This long story will be narrated in details in later notes, inshaAllah]
  • Arabs were used to rough lives. They were not spoiled by materialism and luxuries of this world. One of the greatest impediments for a person to become better or for a person to accept Islam is that he/she will have to leave the luxuries of this life.

Our own lives are prime examples, what stops us from becoming better Muslims: the enjoyment of this world!

Early sahaba (companions of the Prophet) couldn’t afford this type of hesitancy. So Allah chose them from a nation that didn’t know luxury, form a nation that lived off hunger, from a nation that would travel long distances with just one pack of dates and water. They didn’t need to be spoiled by the luxuries of this world and this is what Muslims needed at that time.

  • Arabs had special language, Arabic. As far as we know all other books were revealed in Semitic languages. Hebrew, Aramaic, Seraic, Arabic, they are all sister tongue. These are all, truly, divine languages in many ways. Firstly, because Allah (swt) spoken them and secondly because Allah (swt) revealed His books in them. Torah, Zaboor, Injeel, Qur’an were all in Semitic tongues.

Whoever studies Arabic and any other language would realize the beauty and complexity of Arabic language is unparalleled.

Why Arabia was so special?! (Seerah II) Sunday, Feb 11 2007 

These are notes from Friday Classes I give:


Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) came at the end of 6th century of the Gregorian calendar.

There were two major super powers of the world, Roman (eastern Byzantine empire) and the Persian Empires (sassinads—sassinad dynasty).

Roman empire was a Christian empire. Constantine had converted to Christianity in 320. And the emperor at the time of Prophet was Heraculus, who was very learned and pious Christian, a scholar, which was very rare especially among the rulers. He knew that a prophet is about to come.

Sassinads had two major religions.

Zarasosthra (Zoroastrian—Parsis of our time) and the leader of Sassinads were upon this religion. They considered themselves walking gods and divine children of gods.

Manicunism, were from Prophet Mani. Their religion was very hidden, not much is known about them.

Arabia was in the dead center between Rome and Persian Empires. And this is one of the reasons, we can venture, and Allah knows best, that Arabia was chosen to be the cradle of Islam.

What made Arabia so special that Allah chose to send the Prophet from this place?


  • It was in between the major superpowers of the earth. Geographically it was, literally, the center of the earth. And ironically, when the maps are printed in our time, dead center is the Arabia.


  • Arabia didn’t have any history of colonialism or of aggressiveness. It was a passive country in general. They had internal problems, but never anyone else came and conquered them.


So it was a perfect reason to send a prophet in this land because no one will think that there are colonial reasons why Arabs are expanding. If Romans had a prophet people would say ‘this prophet is a hoax because Romans want to expand their kingdom’. Similarly with Persians. But by sending a prophet in Arabia, there were never such hopes nor were ever such aspirations that Arabia will become politically strong.


  • Secondly, since Arabia was so backward, both the Roman and the Sassinads never considered that Arabia will ever pose a military threat. They never thought of attacking and conquering Arabia. They thought Arabians were backward people, fighting among themselves.


That is why when Heraculus met Abu Sufyan, he said (after confirming the signs of Prophet Muhammad ) “I knew that a Prophet was about to come but I never thought he would come of you.”

Similar statement was said by Yuzdajaj—Sassinad Emperor to the companions when they went to speak to him.


Why? Because Arabs were a backward nation and no one could imagine that a Prophet will come form among them.


So by sending a prophet form this country was a complete, unexpected surprise which helped and aided them as well in what they were about to do.


  • Also, there was a religious reason too. Mecca was the cradle of Islam. When we say Islam, we refer to the ‘original’ Islam and not just the Islam at the time of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).


  • The first house built to worship Allah was Ka’bah. Narrations say that Adam (as) built the ka’bah and then Ibraheem came and revived It. So the first house ever built to worship Allah was in Mecca. And it is only befitting that the last prophet who was sent to seal all the Prophets is sent to where the first house of Allah was.


  • Also, religiously Mecca was also the sanctuary of Ibraheem and Islmaeel (AS). And Ibraheem and Ismaeel were the prophets of Arabs. So it was befitting that Muhmmad (pbuh) also comes from the same city that Ibraheem and Ismaeel settled in and built the ka’bah in.

Seerah–Why Study It? Part I Sunday, Feb 11 2007 

InshaAllah I will be posting my notes on Seerah from Sh. Yasir Qadhi’s lectures here. Based on those notes, I hold a class for high-school & college girls on Fridays.


Saarah comes from the Arabic word ‘sara’ or ‘yaseero’ means journey or traveling. Therefore ‘seerah’ is to discuss the journey of a person’s life. Islamically, Seerah is the study the life of Prophet of Mercy, Muhammad (peace be upon him).


  1. So we can learn from his examples as we are commanded to follow the example of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him)

“Certainly, there is an excellent example for you in the Messenger of Allah, for him who looks forward to Allah and the Last Day, and remembers Allah much.” (33:21)

2. Without a doubt, Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) is a perfect model of human being in all areas of life, as a father, husband, cousin, brother, political leader, militant leader, imam, and friend.

3. It increases our love for our Prophet (pbuh). In fact it is a sign of our love that we study this seerah.

4. It educates us about the meaning of the Qur’an itself. We cannot understand the book of Allah without the seerah, like why a certain verse was revealed etc.

5. It raises our hopes and gives us optimism especially in the time of trouble and turmoil. We are not the only ones suffering rather it has happened before and in more extreme manners. Prophet (pbuh) was persecuted more then anyone in this world today.

In fact, Allah (swt) reminds Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) in Qur’an that he is being told of the prophets of before in order that his iman (faith) increases. Hence, if the stories of the previous prophets can strengthen our prophet’s iman, then imagine what the story of the best of mankind should do to our iman.

6. Seerah in and of itself is a miracle of the Prophet (pbuh). This is the point that not many Muslims appreciate. One of the greatest miracle that the Prophrt (pbuh) has been given is his own life.

Muhammad’s (pbuh) life shows that he indeed is a prophet of Allah and he had no motivation to lie. When we see his life style, how he lived, what he preached, the fact that he himself gave up everything he had, what possible motivation could he have?

Ibn hazm said, ‘If Prophet (pbuh) were only given the miracle of his seerah, he would not have needed any other miracle to prove his prophethood’.

One of the incidents which was a very strong incident was the death of his son, Ibraheem. Ibraheem was the only male son to be born after his prophethood (all other sons had died before). He lived a year and a half which is the sweetest age of a child and that is when Allah willed that his soul be taken. And the Prophet was left without any sons. That day the sun eclipsed. Men being the nature of superstious, took that as a ‘sign’, even the companion of the Prophet (pbuh) fell into this, saying, “Even the sun and the mood are crying because of the death of Prophet’s son.”

Imagine if Muhammad (pbuh) was not the prophet of Allah, what greater sign did he need to ‘prove’ his prophethood to mankind then the fact that a solar eclipse taking place within the hours after his son’s death. But he is the TRUE prophet of Allah. His duty was to proclaim the message to worship Allah and not himself. So he called the Muslims to the masjid, and he stood up to give a speech. He praised Allah and said:

“The sun and the moon are the miracles of Allah’s creation, they do not eclipse or show themselves because of the birth or death of any human being.”

What greater indication can there be of his prophet-hood!! He was not calling to his own aggrandizing, or his own following. No! He was calling the mankind to their true Lord and to His worship alone!

7. Seerah lays out a precise methodology of the revival of Muslim Ummah. How to bring about the honor and glory that once was. How did the Prophet (pbuh) start in the middle of the most illiterate society in the face of earth of that time and within two decades he controlled all of Arabia. And by another two decades, after his death, Muslims controlled all from Spain to china! How did that happen, what were the stages that it went though?

8. We learn how Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) trained the sahabah (companions). What was his tarbiyyah. How did they become the best of all nations? What methodologies did Prophet use in order the make them from the worst of the worst, from the lowest of the low to the highest of the high.

9. It brings about comfort and peace to the heart. Each person enjoys what his heart is conditioned to. If a person’s heart is evil, he enjoys evil. If a person’s heart is pure, he enjoys pure.

10. Studying Seerah is the primary way of defending the honor of our beloved Prophet (pbuh). Defending his honor is an obligation upon us. How can we defend him when we don’t even know him!

So to summarize the blessings of the seerah:

“It is the study of the best matters, of the best human being, of the best time frame and the study of the evolution of the best religion.”




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