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Dynamics of Marriage – Episode 3

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Edris Khamissa

Channel: Edris Khamissa

Series:

Episode Notes

Dealing with in-laws
The Role of Grandparents (continued)
Dealing with Conflict
Increasing Happiness
Harmony in the Home

Episode Transcript

© No part of this transcript may be copied or referenced or transmitted in any way whatsoever. Transcripts are auto-generated and thus will be be inaccurate. We are working on a system to allow volunteers to edit transcripts in a controlled system.


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Dealing with in laws and the role of grandparents continued. Now I want to move on to something a little different to address. We know that parents are always concerned for their children. And once you're a parent, you're a parent for life. But now you're at a stage where your son or daughter is embarking on a new beautiful journey of marriage, they've become married, they starting up a whole new life of adulthood learning all about it, how do we advise the parent to emotionally release their child so that they can open up their wings and fly as it were? These a fundamental difference between nurturing and support as opposed to interference, that point must be made, I think we are

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adult enough, we are insightful enough. When you look at a situation around us, you will know for example, whether you are interfering, whether there is a degree of tension on the part of the other, and you need to respect that because really, it is so painful for young girls who get married, they go into a home they a totally new environment, often initially alien that we forget what they go through the mental torture, the kind of adjustment. So in laws, parents, for example, need to release the children. And if, for example, long before they've got married through their own conduct and behavior, they're shown how they could disagree agreeably, then the young boy and young girl

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would have learned what life is all about how to deal with conflict, why there's a need for you to adapt and change. Because what saddens me really, that people find it so difficult to reconcile so difficult to understand that in the early days of marriage, there are going to be issues is how we deal with those issues. And parents who have led a full life, they need to release the children so children themselves could enjoy their life. But what must happen is this that they must say to them, mommy and daddy around if you need our support, our guidance, and in fact, it'd be a such a beautiful thing. And I know this happens in some homes, where the daughter in law instead of going

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to a father, where she has an issue, she goes to her mother in law, look at that relationship, because she enjoys a wonderful relationship with her because her mother in law is not subjective. She's very objective. And just the other day I was counseling a young couple, and they married for a year or so. And the young girl said she's in love with her husband is a wonderful human being. But he caught into one or two things that made her very unhappy and she had tremendous support from a mother in law. Her mother in law said you have to investigate it and if my son did wrong as it he needs to be reprimanded. He needs to ask you for forgiveness in a lambda Allah, may Allah bless this

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young girl, many a young girl would have left the home. But yes, she left temporarily. The whole idea for to recollect your thoughts and to give this young boy an opportunity to learn from his mistakes, because we are fallible human beings. Yes, mothers and fathers. I know, I know you love your children. If you love them, you release them, you will allow them to grow. Yes, the young fledglings, but allow them to grow blossom, let them learn from their own mistakes. Let them know that we are there for you, and they are there for you. So certainly we are saying that dealing with the inlaws does have its challenges. But I'm going to add another dimension. I'm talking here about

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now living with the inlaws. And there's two aspects to that there's the boy living with his in laws. And then the other situation with a girl living with her in laws. Firstly, just living with in laws, whether you male or female, what are the challenges and then specifically for a boy, and then for adult fees? There are many challenges. I think initially, there is a whole issue of privacy. And when you are staying in the same house, or sometimes you know, you want to be free, you want to express your love and you want to be romantic, you want to call your wife, my shushi both Lena and my sweetheart and a whole range of things. And because you are staying with your in laws, the girl

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staying with a mother in law, somehow the other she tends to be very inhibited. It depends again, on the kind of mother in law she has. And I think all relationships require an opportunity to grow opportunity to consolidate to blossom, they have challenges and it is in the initial start of the relationship or rather the initial part where they can consolidate the relationship and perhaps they require a lot of privacy. But if economic constraints have dictated this they would they in laws Alhamdulillah then the parents themselves must also in a sense, adapt their own lifestyle a bit without really making it difficult for them so that they

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son and daughter in law could feel free enough to express themselves and to enjoy each other without them always looking at the back. Now on the other side of the coin, and I know it is pretty common these days also, and I find nothing wrong with it personally with the son nice thing with his mother in law. And what is critical in that relationship also is that the mother and the daughter, because of the relationship is often a very strong relationship. And whenever they might be an altercation or disagreement, the mother in law could react very negatively, she could be very subjective, and this creates another dimension. But what needs to happen in both those scenarios that you painted

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shamima is a whole issue that when ever you have an issue, discuss it in private, when the dotnet comes out from the bedroom, it will not kill it to smile, a machine indicated to the in laws are a tough night last night with your son, I hate him, they come out sometimes constipated. And it affects rather the whole culture, the whole environment at home because she and neither the husband have learned how to cope have not learned how to disagree agreeably and how to deal with conflict. So there are many dynamics, right? But I believe very fervently, that when you as a human being, know how to deal with others, you can live in any situation. And of course, Allah is a merciful

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Allah, He will bless you when you look after your parents and more so in your same home, because you are in contact with them, you are responding accordingly to their needs. And now we're going to be talking about grandparents, those lovely people that just adore the grandchildren. What positive role can grandparents play in? Firstly, the grandchildren's lives, but also in helping their children's lives become a little easier. grandparents, we cannot thank them enough. They have the resilience, they have the experience, they have seen many, many things, they have tremendous wisdom, which they could share. And there are times when the husband and wife needs some space than to spend

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an evening together, or to go to a restaurant or go to a particular function. The grandparents are there, loving the children hugging them. Rather, the grandparents are there to look after the grandchildren in that way. They give tremendous support, and also advice. But the downside and something that we mentioned in passing the grandparents was also realize that life has become very dynamic things have changed radically in the way we nurture and reach children. It is different from the time when they were children. So many grandparents, for example, tend to have mellowed, and they might unwittingly undermine the discipline. So there must be a kind of understanding. But all in

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all, grand children are blessed when the grandparents around children are blessed when the parents are around. And you can imagine the kind of stimuli and benefits that can accrue in this kind of situation. It is what are your concluding remarks now on this topic that we've dealt with quite extensively we spoke about in laws as well as grandparents. For me, it's about one's own maturity. It's about one understanding the purpose of marriage. At the same token, understanding the purpose of life, often we get into arguments and debates that are irrelevant. And we need to look at life in his broadest context and see that there are other people in the world who are trying to survive, who

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have great difficulties. It's about them trying to eke out an existence and if you look at the issues that they are being challenged with the new would show a little more gratitude inshallah. And it's about understanding that in my relationship with my spouse, to what extent are we helping each other to align our activities every day to align it with our purpose as to why we are on this earth is about understanding what is important as opposed to what is irrelevant and trivial. inshallah, once we have the purpose and a clear goal, it will make a huge difference.

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Topic seven, dealing with conflict, dealing with conflict. The longer you live, the more you will realize the impact of attitude on life. attitude is more important than the past than education than money than circumstances than failure than success than what people say we'll do it is more important than appearance, giftedness or skills. It will make or break a marriage or even a home. The remarkable thing is this. We

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have a choice every day regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day, we cannot change the past, we cannot change the inevitable, the only thing we can do is play on the one thing we have. And that is our attitude. I'm convinced that life is 10%. What happens to me and 90% how I react to it as it is with you. Similarly, it is your attitude to the challenges that beset you at home that will determine your happiness, conflict does not necessarily have to be negative. In fact, it is an opportunity to reappraise your relationship with your spouse, you are certainly in charge of your own attitude. This is our topic dealing with conflict. Now, we talked about dealing with conflict,

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but with special reference to the home and marriage and spouses dealing with conflict with each other. It is is there a way that you can recommend to couples on how to handle conflict so that they can achieve mutual understanding? There are many ways that I can recommend but the one way that I feel perhaps can help couples come to some mutual understanding, it's very simple. And what really happens here is that whenever there is a situation of conflict, it's important to state the purpose of the discussion. In other words, whenever there is a conflict, if a discussion begins, it must be very clear as to why you discussing and you could agree that we are discussing the situation because

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simply we want to have a solution. And if both parties are solution driven, then it makes a huge difference. Because you may say but Idris that is so simplistic. No, in fact, if one of the party says Well, you know what, there is no solution to it. Secondly, you're wasting your time. And this is what you think or the idea of you want to be right in other words is about intentionality, we got to say, we are discussing it, because we want to arrive at a solution. And then if you are the person that is and the man is the meat of the house. So what happens here is this, you make it very clear that both of you are there to give your respective use about the problem. In other words, you

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recognize there is a problem, you recognize that you have a particular view. And perhaps she has another view. And then what you need to do, you need to describe the problem as you see it and get your spouse to describe the problem has he or she sees it, since a discussion in a discussion is not about how they see each other, but how they see the problem. In other words, they are sharing the different perspective, then, the next step that is important is to ask your spouse about what are his or her feelings about the problem, because that is a wonderful thing to do. That will give you a clue in terms of the gravity of the situation, the enormity of the problem, because feelings in the

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end reflect very deeply the hurt in the heart. And of course on the positive sense, these deep love can conflict then be avoided, conflict cannot be avoided, but it can be managed. Now, the word conflict itself perhaps is a harsh word I would rather say can disagreement be avoided? Yes, disagreement cannot be avoided long as your disagreement is not based on trivial things, and for which you make an issue about it right now, when you are there. And it's very important for you to now to paraphrase. In other words, put your spouse's point of view in a language of your own understanding so that she understands that you understand because often when people are in conflict,

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people get so emotional, often they are misunderstood. In other words, if your spouse tells you that I'm very upset because you are tardy in those currencies or so are you telling me that I tend to be very slow in certain things. I'm not responsive enough? Yes. Now you understand it, because it should not understand the other perspective, that he cannot go to what is rarely an appropriate solution to the problem. Thereafter, what you can also do is to give your spouse an opportunity to paraphrase your situation from the way she sees it to paraphrase it. Now what it does is this, this brings about rarely shamima I find this is magic here, a mutual understanding of each other's

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perspectives and also what they feel about each other's problems and this is a nice part of it to give

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They make a list of possible solutions to the problem. Isn't that wonderful? They can discuss the solutions, they can negotiate it. And then what is even more important that the Spirit throughout the discussion must be one of mutual respect. We need to accord dignity. And once you've decided on the solutions, you need to clearly understand the implications of each solution and make a commitment that fine. We agree, this is what we're going to do from this point onwards. And once a discussion is complete, and do not say pleasing, I know what you're going to do you forget your side of the bargain. When that happens, it really spoils what could be a wonderful relationship where you

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could grow from strength to strength. The reality is that a couple are two people have different characters, temperaments, values coming from different backgrounds coming together. So there is bound to be disagreement. And I think what you are saying here is how the disagreement is handled is the important thing. So thank you for that. And more importantly, there must be a genuine commitment to the relationship and that all discussions must be underpinned by love and mutual respect. It is imperative Shamim, I need to repeat that it is imperative that the spouses turn to Allah subhanaw taala for guidance before attempting to resolve any conflict. So you just we are saying yes, they

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are bound to be disagreements in the home. And I think what you are suggesting is be open to communication, be open to suggestions and have mutual discussion of Shura as it were in the home. Now there is this conflict that has occurred, how would a couple resolve it? And what are other practical advices that you can give the couple with regard to conflict? Firstly, you got to keep your cool, because anger doesn't help. It exacerbates the situation. And you got to reflect and put your finger on the root cause of the problem. Sometimes we are suppressing the symptom. Rather than finding a cure, we need to look at what are the deep underlying issues. And the other thing is that

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we need to acknowledge that there is a problem, it becomes very frustrating if one of the spouses feels is a problem. And the other feels I don't know what he or she is talking about. And in that way, it is quite clear that the other person is either insensitive or unaware. In that regard, Adrian said I wanted please just come in here. What is the spouse's then reaction? What is the way forward? I'm trying everything that brother Idris is talking about in the city. I've tried going in doing communication with my spouse, I was affectionate. I tried everything but none of it is working because as you're saying he is insensitive or she is insensitive, what is the way forward for this

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person who is really now desperate? The critical thing? I'm more concerned about the insensitive partner. If for example, the woman tells her husband, darling, I'm very concerned, I'm in pain, instead of him being in denial. Perhaps he might have been unaware is a battalion I did not know what is it that is pain. You speak to me the assumption is that in the relationship, there is openness and receptiveness and one of the recurring themes is that we must have a conversation at home. It must not be an interrogation where one partner answers in monosyllables. Yes. Is a food ready? Yes. Is this ready? Yes. What about a conversation in which you're able to share your

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feelings. The other important aspect is that whenever you want to resolve a conflict, you must set up a proper time to set up a time before meals when the couples are hungry. They say a hungry man is an angry man. The other thing is this, you need to focus on the current problem. And must you got to be solution driven. You can't say oh, there are no solutions to this and in part of your discussion must be the no name calling, no blaming and no finger pointing and we need to understand and remember the real enemy shamima shaytan and not your spouse, put your ego aside and be objective in discussing your problem. And finally, we need to remember that those who forgive forget and pardon

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others are considered from the poisons from whom Allah has prepared a great reward a paradise was with is as large as the heavens and the earth. Next, I want to move on to how you can keep stress from undermining your marriage. There are three specific ways that stress has a negative effect on marriage, it saps us of the strength we need to renew our love. It turns

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us from allies into adversaries as we blame each other. And stress makes us hostile competitors for each other's sympathy. Now, Idris stress is certainly a reality in every home, there is no way we can say you do x y, Zed and stress is going to be gone away stress we know does undermine the marriage, it does affect a marriage, it put lots and lots of stress on the marriage, how can we avoid getting into this vicious cycle? I agree shamima the stress plays a very significant role, but it impacts on relationships, be it in the workplace, be it with your friends, and most significantly in our homes. And life is indeed very stressful, it is stressful, we find that people firstly need

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to understand that they are under stress, they need to manage the time, the need to look at other ways, perhaps some kind of recreation so that they have what you call a complete comprehensive life. So that the primary relationship which is that of the spouse, and of course the child doesn't suffer amongst the other things that needs to be done, the spouse needs to take time to what I call to decompress when he comes home, instead of the wife coming to him immediately. making demands give him a chance to decompress to uncoil for him to relax and unwind. In that way he be able to rejuvenate himself be able to restore calmness so that you'll be able to respond to the needs of the

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home with a lots of energy because life can be very challenging. The other wonderful thing that needs to be done is that we need to give each other time to, for example, to gripe or to complain where you know where the wife would say, you know, darling, I had a terrible day today. This is what happened. And you say oh, come here, my shoe shoe can let me hug you. Right? How are you feeling now. And because people want to speak, they're not looking for solutions necessarily. But if they know that the other listens with love and empathy, it makes a big difference. Similarly, the husband can complain and gripe about some situation because life is not a bed of roses. And one of my

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favorite sayings that I've come across that life is a campaign and not a battle. It has his defeat and his victories. And the other important thing is, is to find out really what is upsetting your partner. If you find for example, if you are aware that your partner has been very quiet, even when you have expressed your love for her, there isn't a response, you know, something is worrying her. So what you do is to find out, what is it that appears to be troubling you and when you show a genuine sincerity and commitment that would really inspire the other to speak and to share.

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It is coming back to that point by asking what is troubling a partner. Sometimes it could be a stress as simple as you know, I've got five things to do. I've got to go and bath children and then I've got to prepare dinner and then I've got to read mesilla can a partner not actually helped to reduce the stress of the other by helping with certain things if chores have suddenly become a stressor in the home. Of course that needs to be done. One would expect these a kind of sensitivity and responsiveness. But the thing is, is if you are not going to speak your partner, I'm not a mind reader, I have no idea that what goes on in the mind, I'll make certain assumptions and I might be

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wrong. So then it is your responsibility to share what's in your heart because one of the recurring themes always is revealing and healing. That is our point on communication again, absolutely. Now the other thing is, is that we need to recognize that people have different ways of dealing with stress. For example, your spouse, your husband or your wife may say, you know what, I need a little time for myself, give that person the opportunity. You mustn't impose your solution to her if something helps her allow it to happen because it really contributes to regeneration and growth. The other thing that often people really misunderstand is they often take it very, very personally and

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do not say oh yeah, I know you're grumpy, always grumpy, always preoccupied and one goes on and on. And it's quite clear you have not understood your partner neither have you understood the situation. It is witness prioritizing tasks come in here in helping to reduce stress, can prioritizing activities help to reduce stress. Yes, we need to look at coping skills we need to understand what are the stressors and help each other for example, if we have a tendency of procrastinating then that will create a different kind of stress. I mean the other thing is very quickly that can be done. We need to change

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The scenery around we need to, for example, be empathetic. We need to embrace each other and there must be a degree of selflessness in everything else. If you are coming home and save as soon as I go home, I want my wife to listen to everything I've gone through a Don't listen to her, and that is grossly unfair. The relationship is about two people with they have a commitment to the sacred institution of marriage. So there are many things that need to be done. And I have no doubt in my mind, if we spend time and reflect on who we are, I have no doubt you'll be able to transform your home from one that perhaps the sadness to one day's joy, exuberance, love, affection, togetherness,

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which is so important to underpin any relationship and especially one that will contribute to marital bliss. And one of our to us should always be Oh Allah, give me barricade my time. Absolutely. Because we did not turn to Allah enough. We never do that. Topic eight, how to increase happiness in a marriage, ways to increase happiness in marriage, the young and excited bride and groom to be ecstatic about the upcoming wedding in marriage and the joy that it will bring three to six months later, reality has set in, and both spouses realize that marriage takes a great deal of effort and patience. What we're going to discuss with you now are tips for both husbands and wives

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to help make the task a little less daunting and to increase the many rewards that are possible in such a marvelous and complex relationship inshallah it reads began to do the segment in this way, I'm going to read you each tip on how to increase happiness in the marriage and you inshallah going to just explain it further, perhaps giving us certain examples as well. The first one says into the marriage with the right intention and renew this often, that is fundamental to that relationship. If your intention is not pure, then you're not expect any kind of happiness. There'll be titillation Of course, but not true happiness. The fundamental thing that needs to be done is to marry so that you

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please Allah subhanaw taala and in that way, inshallah there'll be blessings in the marriage. And also, this whole marriage will really be an act of worship, and inshallah, you'll find peace of mind. Also tranquility of heart, and you'll be able to cope with the kind of challenges that you're faced with, because you understand that life ain't a bed of roses. Number two, remember that your spouse is also your brother or sister in Islam. You know how often for example, we treat so many people with kindness, because we say the almighty of Nabi sallallahu, wasallam we treat strangers with kindness, but you forget that your spouse also belongs to that humanity also belongs to the

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Amati of Nabi sallallahu, wasallam and also that your spouse is someone else's brother or sister. In that way, we will recognize that to hurt someone is unacceptable. What we need is compassion, caring consideration. Tip number three on how to increase happiness in marriage, do not hold unrealistic expectations. If you hold unrealistic expectations, then you're going to be disenchanted. Remember, the world is not Janna is not meant to be a perfect place. As human beings, we are imperfect, we are going to make mistakes, but it is important to learn from those mistakes. We need to have realistic expectations. Often many of us have a kind of pure romantic notion of marriage, which emanates from

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fairytale books, and not from reality. Number four, emphasize the best in your spouse that is so critical. We tend to often highlight the concerns and shortcomings. If you look at our spouses with new eyes, you'll see they have some wonderful qualities emphasize the best recognize it applauded inshallah, that will also inspire your spouse to respond to other areas with alacrity enthusiasm, and with purpose. Be your mates best friend. Yes, I like that. I just like that. And I see shamima is shaking her head vigorously in a formation. And we saw this really in on Ibiza Loulou asylum, when he got the first revelation, and what he did, he ran to his beloved wife to get into arms where

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she comforted him and if we are able to make our spouses, our best friends that will make so much of a difference.

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We tend to share many things with people outside of our home. We are excited to be with people, but somehow the other is excitement that should be double no homes in many of our homes. It is not there. Number six, spend quality time together. Yes, you know, we often some of us appear to be philanthropic, we are generous at heart and whatnot. And the time that we spend with each other is not quality. Time is time many of us been having an argument, we are not discussing things, we are not sympathetic. So my recommendation is this whilst you are together, enjoy each other, be with each other, celebrate each other. Number seven, express feelings often I like to tell your spouse,

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my darling, I love you. These are my feelings to talk about that. Because what it does, really, it reinforces the relationship. And more than anything else, it strengthens it in that way. what it also does is you're essentially saying that you know what, you are important, you are critical, and I love you. Number eight, admit to mistakes and ask for forgiveness. If we can only do these two things to say, you know what, I'm sorry, I made a mistake. Please forgive me simple. But now, many of us it's like a titanic struggle. If I say I'm sorry, that I'm showing my weakness, and I'll have an argument until I win it. And that's important. Forgiveness is so critical, the quicker we learn

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to forgive, it will avoid all the pain and hurt. Number nine never bring up mistakes of the past and really as Muslims, you know, it is not recommended that you dwell on the mistakes of the past. I jokingly say in many of my programs, some of the other we have memories like elephants, we say but you did not recall five years ago about the same time at nine o'clock in the morning. You said this two years ago at mommy's place you did this we go on and on. It shows quite clearly it reflects more about you. Let us forget the past. Let us move on because in the end, if you are going to be stubborn or dogmatic, in the end, not only your spouse will suffer, you would suffer and the sacred

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institution of marriage would crumble as long as we try not to make the same mistakes again. Absolutely. Number 10. Surprise each other at times. Maybe for example, if you tell your wife a My darling, my sushi berlina tomorrow night, I'm going to cook you a lovely meal. I should be surprised. I pray she doesn't die of shock. But she'll be surprised the whole idea of surprises is to spice up the relationship is to bring about the excitement to create a kind of renewed interest to rekindle the passion and the love. And our final tip on how to increase happiness in your marriage and your home inshallah have a sense of humor. Yes, I know life as many challenges. But if

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we have a sense of humor, it could make a huge difference. Why of course, there must be laughter in our homes instead of always dwelling on pain it is you've given us a very constructive advice. Alhamdulillah now throughout the city thus far, we've been talking about togetherness we've been talking about loving the marriage or the different kinds of love. You know, I was surprised when I first read about this too many of us we speak but love is something that appears so a nebulous something so hazy. And in fact, I learned that different kinds of love and each one of that kind of love it is so critical in a marital relationship. The one love that I like to highlight inshallah

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that we'll talk about it is what I call forgiving love. Then these serving love these persevering love these guarding love these celebrating loving, the other one is renewing love. interest, you've identified six different types of love to us. I'm going to ask you just now to expand on them. But why are these so important? To me? These are expressions of love that a secret to an invincible, rock solid marriage.

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And when you put this into practice, through the mercy of Allah, you will really she'll I believe shamima your marriage from the ravages of distance. Disconnect, discard an emotional divorce. The first one I want to go to is forgiving love. Okay, we understand the element of forgiving but how did the two come together forgiving in love? You see, when you truly love someone, you learn to forgive and forgiving love really

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What it does, it heals and helps spouses feel accepted and connected. What it offers is like a fresh start after you've offended and hurt each other, and it really gives a new spark to the relationship. And that is important, because forgiving love really helps you to reconnect after you have hurt one another is like this, you know, often when you go through a problem when a person forgives, because of that love, it really equips you to communicate a very deep level of acceptance for one another. And it also shows that you have the capacity and the resilience to recover from the pain that you also inflict on one another. It helps you also to work through your offenses. The

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second one you identified was serving love. Can you describe that aspect for us please, serving love discovers and meets needs, and it really helps the spouses feel honored and understood. Serving level also helps you discover and you really meet each other's deepest needs. Allah subhanaw taala has created you and your spouse with physical, emotional, psychological, spiritual needs. And it is an opportunity for each of the spouses to respond to those needs. Sometimes you might just, you know, Shamim, it does happen, you may feel reluctant to express your needs to your spouse, but when you are there to serve, but you know that you are there to serve as a sense, not like a slave, but

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serving your partner, it will make a huge difference in the way you respond to the needs, because we realize that we are there for each other, and just how we are able to connect with each other in that way will help to serve each other. How would you then explain the third one persevering? Love persevering love really is about when you have different kinds of challenges. And you find that when you have persevered and work towards something, it helps you to go through trials of life, for example, when you know when the wife supports you in your own challenges. And although she also goes through some kind of deprivation, same kind of difficulty, if let's say your husband or your spouse

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is out of work, that persevering love really sustains you throughout this period, what is your understanding of guarding love? Now guarding love to some people really basically you are saying that you are there to protect your spouse shielding her, like as we are told governments and to each other. And also, we need to look at the threats to marriage guarding her from the threats to marriage, what are some of the things that we can look at, maybe they are threatened by many forces today, sometimes outside forces, it could be job stresses, it could be sexual temptations and worldly distractions, it could also be some other kind of forces within the home. And in that way,

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when you have that guarding love, you are helping each other and protecting each other from that, which has become really a painful reality. Now I think we're moving on to the positive ones, the next one that you had identified is celebrating love. Now to me, this invokes the mood of happiness and hope. What we fail to do often we'd not celebrate our spouses I'm not speaking about purely in terms of the intimacy in the bedroom is about celebrating them in public. And in private. It's one way of saying, you know what, that's my wife, I love her, you know, talk about right without going overboard, of course. And in that way, once you celebrate each other, in private and in public, in

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the confines of your bedroom, and in any other place that will help the relationship to strengthen. And it's about saying, I love her, you are not embarrassed about your spouse, the last one is renewing love. Now this one again creates for me the image of hope and the image of there being a future a tomorrow, not just an end. I'm reminded when you asked me this question about a brother who embraced Islam, and he said in his talk that I embrace Islam in 1977. Then he asked all these people when the audience were born Muslims, and he asked them, have you embraced Islam. And that's a very important point, that for us to be constantly reminded of our vows, I mean, rather of our

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commitment, the nikka the sacred institution of marriage, and we continue to renew it, to rekindle it to put different kinds of energies in it so that you're able to enjoy any kind of trial and tribulation.

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Topic nine harmony in the home as salaam alaikum

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rahmatullah wa barakato. My dear brothers and sisters, it gives me tremendous joy today to speak to you about marriage. And in my introduction, I want to really reflect on why we as Muslims are having serious problems. Of course, there are many reasons. But it saddens me when I look at people, and they say, Oh, you know, it's my wife again, oh, it's my husband again. And they does not appear to be any hope. I found rarely, in my own experience, consulting with people, connecting with people, is a fact that many of the couples have forgotten that there is life. Also, outside marriage. Many women are oppressed in their homes, they're not given an opportunity to grow, to read to make a

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contribution to society. They're not even encouraged to have friends, neither are they encouraged to develop certain skills, and what happens to them. These sisters especially, are dependent entirely on marriage for their happiness. And in fact, when our beloved sisters have an opportunity to grow, make a contribution to society, then they would be able to get into marriage with renewed hope, knowing full well, that they feel a sense of satisfaction, because there is a feeling of self actualization, they feel they're making a significant contribution, and they'll begin to see marriage in a true perspective. On the other hand, a man sometimes when he gets married, he might

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have had friends, perhaps very good friends, he might have played certain sports, which gave him fulfillment. But then again, when he gets married, he says, Well, you know, I'm married. Now, there's no time for sports. Oh, my gosh, what a serious mistake, then such couples would become entirely dependent on each other for the happiness. And that is very sad. Because being the Amati of Nabi sallallahu, alayhi wa sallam, each one of us need not only to be people that succeed, but indeed people of significance of improving the quality of life, engaging the wider community, developing certain habits, contributing not only to your growth, but the growth of society at large.

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And it starts from you, you cannot change the other, but you can change yourself. And we need to take ownership of our life. We have only one life to lead yesterday, for example, when I was counseling a couple and asked this young girl, imagine if today was the last day of your life, what would you do differently? She said, I would show my husband love. I said, but what is stopping you? Should it be your last day before you want to do that? And that's an important part of our life. Every day is precious. Every moment is precious, The Power of Now, not yesterday, it's gone. Not tomorrow. How arrogant are we do you think could be here tomorrow? Let us make a difference now. And

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I want to encourage my brothers and sisters, to inculcate sound habits, have hobbies, make a contribution to society, be with your wife, together, you can do things get involved in some kind of social activity in your community. I have no doubt in my mind. Through Allah's mercy, you look at each other with new eyes, ah, perhaps you're falling in love again.

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In the public lecture that you delivered, you mentioned that one should not depend on one spouse solely for one's happiness. And my take on this matter is that often one is defined through one spouse. And unfortunately, this is usually the case with the woman wishes defined through her husband through his profession. And then the cycle actually continues where you then as a female, define through your children. And I know women who define themselves through the children's successes. And what happens is your children finally get married, they leave the home, and this woman is left all alone. And she suddenly has to discover herself. Am I right in this? And why is it

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that you said we should not depend solely on each other for our happiness, you find shamima that those individuals that depend on each other for the happiness, then they are going to be disenchanted. That means my mood. My happiness is dependent on my husband's mood. If he's happy, then I'm happy. Yes, I have no problems with that. But surely you also want to be happy because of who you are. You're to be happy also because of the color

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contributions, you're making society, the kind of things that you do in the absence of your husband, that gives you fulfillment. I'm not diminishing, that your marriage itself is a very critical part of your life. But your marriage itself should not define you. Of course, there are rights and responsibilities that go together with any marriage. And I found, as I was indicating, in my public lecture, that many individuals have many levels of frustration, and they would say, for example, why are you unhappy, or my husband comes home angry, he gets upset, or is erratic in his behavior, or he does not speak now, can you imagine this, in a home with the wife has no interest, a whole life

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revolves only around the husband, not interacting with the neighborhood, she has no personal interest, and our happiness is dependent largely on the mood, the capriciousness of her husband. On the other extreme, can you imagine the life of a woman who leads a full life is engaged in the community has hobbies, might be even working, and making a contribution, feeling a sense of self worth, then you will find that relationship itself is far more secure, and strengthen, there are no insecurities where there is mutual respect, and you are respected for who you are. And you're not respected for the fact that you are the person that is a breadwinner, or that you got a profession,

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and I did not have one. And that is so important, that if only we as parents understand that, if we want to leave any kind of legacy, we got to empower our children, make them feel worthwhile, that they too can make a significant contribution, if our conversations at home are going to be petty, or they're going to be narrow. And it's about little things, then your children themselves are not aspire to do great things. It is you are saying to me that each partner in a relationship needs to be an individual, they need to work together, but also need to have some sense of self. What are some key habits that each partner needs to have in order to keep the togetherness but also maintain

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their individuality shamima, what I'm going to share with you amongst the many habits have came across in a book, The title of the book is who will cry when you die. And that title to me is very evocative. And immediately when I read the title, I began to reflect on my own life, and ask myself whether I'm touching the hearts of people I interact with, whether I'm playing the people that I love that I love them, whether they respond or not, is unimportant. But what is important to share that love because someday when they look back at their own life, and they say yes, indeed, he told me that he loves me. So similarly, what we need to do to leave a legacy, we need to do certain

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things. And Islam is about action. It's about imperatives, it's about doing, yes, we need to reflect on life. And once we have reflected on life, you realize that refreshing itself is not enough, it must be followed by action to do things. And some of the key habits that I want to suggest in terms of developing the self, that will give you positive self worth, that will also enrich you in your relationship with your husband, where, for example, you'll be able to deal with day to day trials and tribulations with composure and flair. And of course, confidence. The first one I refer to is discover your calling. Now, each one of us are living in society. And each one of us needs to

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understand that all of us have a role to play. And we need to look into ourselves and ask ourselves what is the role that I want to play a role in which I can leave a legacy, a role in which I can enrich the lives of other people. And I'm emphasizing that because this is especially for our sisters, they too need to discover the calling. Your next habit that you mentioned, is maintain your perspective. I think you're saying become focused, very important to become focus often in a marital relationship or in a marriage. They are trivial things that impact on the marriage. They're not substantive issues. They're not issues that really that should depress you or to make you angry. So

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we need to maintain your perspective. We need to understand that in life, we have a purpose and if we are going to quibble coral about little things and forget

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Get this perspective, it's a problem at the same time to see it from the perspective of your spouse. How will talking to oneself be a good habit, because all the time we need to encourage ourselves, we need to make sure that thoughts in our mind are positive and say yes, I will be happy I can do it, I can make a difference. Because once you indulge in that self talk, it can help you to develop far more positive habits, and to have positive relationships. Often our mind sometimes is filled with negativity, when you feel especially when you have low self esteem, you feel inadequate, and insecure. So your mind must be filled with beautiful things. Because when you have a beautiful mind,

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inshallah, your actions also would be beautiful. Developing the habit of silence would actually get you to be able to listen, not only listen, but also to ensure that you think before you act, and silence is beautiful. What happens often when these marital problems, there is too much of talking, but no one is listening. Once you listen, you'll begin to have an empathetic understanding of your partner. Because silence is something that can bring about tranquility and peace of mind. laughing. How is that a good habit? And what does it do to improve relationship? You know, when you visit many homes, you look at them. The man looks so depressed, the wife is also depressed. And when you ask

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them, when did you last laugh, they cannot remember to have fun with each other. You should bring joy to each other. Sometimes you can just laugh. Doesn't have to be a joke, just to laugh is spontaneous laugh. And sometimes you could burst out laughing and giggling and your husband responds the same way. We'd not do enough of that. And what does laughter do? Laughter lubricates life. Laughter eases the tension, laughter or two gives you a kind of perspective. I've seen, for example, there are people that are only serious all the time, they'll go for a bribe, they'll have deep, profound political discussions, they forget to engage each other, connect with each other. All the

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time is serious business. They have not understood that there is a place for laughter. And of course, a place for tears. What effect would writing have little notes be? It's so romantic, even for example, that you are away at work, sending an SMS and telling her I'm thinking about you, I love you. And when she responds immediately, wow, you say Wow, look at her. And she says, I love you too. I am for you. And you are for me. So need to be creative in what we do, how wonderful it is, for example, when your husband is going for a weekend off. And then when he opened his bag, and there's a note from you, my darling, I'm thinking about you is a beautiful, the early habit we spoke

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about about learning to be silent. And the next one keep your cool to me. They seem to be related. Yes. Now, one of the things that we need to do, if we are going to be angry, then we're going to fight fire with fire. And we need to keep our cool how often some new things are done out of anger. And when things have abated. You ask for forgiveness to darling, my sweetheart. My shisha bouboulina, I'm so sorry. I should have kept my cool, but the damage is done. Our Nabi sallallahu alayhi wa sallam has reminded us the words to this effect that is far worse to break the heart of a believer than the Kaaba, the Kaaba, you can

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practice forgiveness, and stop condemning would be an effective habit how So, you see, forgiveness is so important. Whenever there is a conflict, it shaytan plays his role. Shaytan tells you when the argument, do not forgive, then you say, but I forgive you, but I'll not forget by you forgiving, it makes a huge difference. It can rekindle the relationship. The whole idea is that we are human, we are going to make mistakes. So it's very important for us to practice forgiveness, and in doing so, we will not condemn each other. How can you condemn your life partner? What are you doing, really, in condemning her you in essence condemning yourself and if you recall, also one of the other habits

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that I mentioned rather one of the other habits that is also there, the action habit. It's one thing what goes on in your mind by you doing things by following

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Up Your love with some action. They mustn't be a disparity between what you tell your spouse and what you do. And the point that we heard together the other day, show me my favorite call. It says it is easy to make a promise, but difficult to keep it. The next habit I want to move on to is, don't be too hard on yourself. Yes, sometimes we tend to be too hard. We blame ourselves self castigation, we rebuke ourselves. And in doing that, then you are really being unfair, you must understand that I made a mistake that we need to learn from our mistakes. every mistake should be a teachable moment. And if you are hard with yourself, rarely, I would expect your spouse to say, you

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know what, don't be too hard with yourself, you made a mistake, you must and on the other hand, says, You deserve it, you're not hard enough. The next one I want to move on to is I think, you know, look at the bigger picture, stop thinking tiny thoughts, renew things, tiny thoughts, you're going to be petty, you'll feel a sense of insecurity, you'll begin to speculate, and you would really do whatever that is wrong. And really what is needed today is a tiny thought, but big thoughts, thoughts that liberate your mind, rather than those thoughts that really make you live like a claustrophobic existence, tiny thoughts that do not enrich and empower you, your thoughts

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should be about bigger issues. If trivial things impact on a relationship, then it worries me the whole idea of maintaining your perspective. Now, if we have to backtrack, go back a track on the CD, how would a man or woman use these habits in its totality to improve their relationship with themselves and with their spouse? I think the most fundamental thing is for us to be self aware, you must know exactly who you are, you need to know yourself. And if you know yourself, and if you know how you are reacting, that will help you to connect with your spouse. And to summarize that basically, what is important, essentially, what I'm saying is that for you to learn, and grow as an

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individual, and once you grow as an individual, if you practices action steps, it will make a huge difference in terms of the kind of maturity, you'll bring to a relationship. In fact, those who don't our practices, action habits reflect a mind that is insecure, reflect a person that has low self esteem reflects a person who doesn't love himself. And a person is not prepared to take ownership of his life, and a person who is essentially dependent on the other for that happiness. You know, one of your habits that you mentioned, was learn to be silent. And also, the other one was keep your cool, which, you know, we said earlier, they were related, but I just seem to find that if

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a man or a woman remembers this dictum, it's going to actually help them improve on the relationship, because they're going to be thinking about certain consequences. And it goes like this. When you choose the behavior, you choose the consequences. That is so true. Because in life, what ever behavior you choose, you must be prepared to accept the consequences of that behavior. If, for example, you're going to say to yourself, when my husband comes, I'm not going to talk to him. I'm very upset with him, you pull your face, yes, it will make him unhappy. But it will also make you unhappy. But a better husband leaves a full life, he would say to himself, look at how immature

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My wife is, and I'm not going to allow her to diminish me. So the critical aspect is this, whatever decision one makes in life, be prepared to accept the consequences of such a decision, as you say, don't do the crime if you don't have the time. Can couples be so close to each other, and doing so much together that they can actually smother or even suffocate each other? Yes, sometimes I find that couples are utterly emotionally psychologically dependent on each other, every little thing they do together, and I just find it i'm not saying well, they should not do it if it gives them joy and fulfillment, so be it but the critical aspect we need space space to grow space to reflect space

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to disagree to enrich each other through our diverse life experiences, to share what happens every day in our life. I'm not necessarily saying that woman must go to work. I'm not saying that. If you are Tom also you can enrich yourself your mind and in doing so you can contribute to the maturity and grow how wonderful it is. For example, when your husband passes away, right or your wife passes away. If you look back in this and you kill yourself

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Ah, you know, my gosh, I have learned so many beautiful things from him. And today because of him, because of his attributes, and Alas, blessing, I'm able to stand on my own two feet, I can fight my own battles, I have a high self esteem, I can negotiate problems, I can navigate turbulent waters, I found Allah and our beloved result, because of him because of his knowledge, his experience, how we enriched me how we added really meaning to my life. And that is very important. What would the benefits be if a man or a woman says, today, I choose to be happy, rather than right? That is so beautiful, because the choice is yours in life. And this is a recurring theme in our CDs. In life.

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You can choose your own attitude, you can tell yourself, I'm going to be happy, no matter what. Or you tell yourself, no matter how hard my husband tries to make me happy, I'm going to be sad. That's a decision you've made. So it is important for us to adopt the right psychological, mental attitudes. And those attitudes that develop First, the interior landscape will externalize themselves in the landscape outside. For example, when you sometimes go to the sea, look at the water, the movement, when you are happy, you see it almost so lyrical, like a rhythm, a beautiful rhythm. But if you are said, even the vernal landscape, you see sadness, it's about the mind. It's

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about your inner eye. It's about you. There's a couple who Alhamdulillah have recently married, and everything is happy in the home, they in total bliss. And as time goes by the little disagreements come in. All right. And after listening to the CDs, The couple have decided, yes, we are doing this right. But here's our problem areas are gray areas we want to improve, I seem to think that this is what they should be doing the capital need to look at what they've been doing right in the relationship thus far and continue with that, then find one thing per day, or which they can improve, because I just seem to think of they're going to say, this is wrong, this is wrong, this is

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wrong, this is wrong. It's so overwhelming that there is no hope for this marriage. But if I choose one thing per day, can this couple not gain more and say, Okay, today we're going to work on this or that, maybe give us a scenario first, and then a way forward. Okay. shamima, what you are referring to is the incremental effect of little things, you start off taking small steps, little steps. Now, if you look at ourselves, none of us are infallible. There are many things that are wrong with us many shortcomings. And we need to look at those little things that are niggling that are impacting negatively on the relationship and what has happened, you need to recognize that and ask your life

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partner, please help me with this, I tend to have this particular problem to give you a real life scenario. For example, the wife might tell the husband that every time for example, I look at your mother, and this is a big thing, actually, I just get so upset, and I don't want to be upset. She's your mother. I know you love her, and you should love her. I have my issues with her. But whenever she comes home, I find it so difficult to handle myself, I don't want to be rude, help me please. Now you can adopt this approach. Don't ever be rude to her. On the other hand, you try to understand the underlying cause of that and help her with those things. They appear little, but they'll

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contribute largely to their happiness. So what needs to be done doesn't have to happen overnight, or a period of time. But if self improvement is your motive, it makes a huge, huge difference. Of course, the example I took is a major example. There are also other examples one can talk about, for example, maybe there is a tendency for the husband who when he's talking to his wife appears preoccupied, and she honestly feels that night tried to talk to him. He doesn't appear to listen, and he insists that he listens. But then use request. No Darling, I would like you to listen to me is it helped me I just tend to get preoccupied. So okay, will you do the following things for me,

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when I look at you and talk to you would you can look back at me so that I know. Give me that message that you care. Surely you can do this at least as a start. So it's about building. It's about the cumulative effect on building things. If any one of the life partner is dogmatic and stubborn, is a I'm not prepared to change you take what you get. What you see is what you get, and therefore it's very sad and I'm so glad shamima you referring to this because I'm connecting to something else. I think

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Find generally in workshops, parenting or marriage, who attends largely the woman lies the females. And the reason the man says, You got a problem, you go for those workshops, you got a problem, you go for the parenting, they are your children, they have forgotten it is a partnership. And what we get out of a relationship depends largely what we invest in it, you can't sit back and expect things to happen. You mentioned in a sent to your husband that I want you to look at me when I talk to you usually what happens in any relationship, whether it's with friends or even with here we talking about spouses, usually, the discussion comes up after a big fight that you know, you did that. And

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you know, last week you did that. And the week before you did that put us saying is when a small something happens, address it in a loving manner, before it becomes a large issue. Absolutely. Because it is rarely when little things that are ignored, then it culminates into bigger problems, then it starts off with perhaps a little bit of irritation, then anger, frustration, and then desperation, then it starts off with indifference to the partner, the point of defiance and condemnation, the point in which sometimes people look like a stone wall, there is absolutely no communication. There are seven steps toward attaining bliss, in any relationship, and they are the

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following. No way your relationship is get rid of all the myths, which is the wrong thinking, blow the whistle on your own negative behavior, have personal relationship values, connect with your spouse, manage the relationship, and finally, ensure that your relationship is underpinned by Islamic values. Now, to me, everything that we've discussed thus far in all these CDs is encompassed in these seven steps. Give me your evaluation, please, on these seven steps, if you look at the first one, know where your relationship is, the whole idea is if your relationship is at point x, is it at a desirable place? If not, why not? What are the things that are holding back that

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relationship for it to flourish? Where do you want the relationship to be? And remember, it is not the work of a single individual, but it is the work of both the husband and the wife, when one person says something the other reciprocates and vice versa, to say you know what, we can make it happen. But if you do not know where the relationship is, then it shows me that you're not reflecting on it, you are not analytical, that means you are taking your life partner and the marriage for granted. because it'd be a very sad day, if you married for 25 years, 30 years, 40 years, and you'd expect every day to be a happier day, because of a understanding of the other. I

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recall, some years ago, I visited someone that I know someone whom I respect, I known him to be a very active individual, a contributed to society. And he went through a little lean period when he wasn't well, it was so emotional, to see his wife, his life support the woman that gave meaning to his life, who while she was eating, she was feeding, it was so emotional to see this connection to see, for example, on the one hand, me being there, perhaps it might have eroded his manhood because now there is a kind of dependence on his life partner. Because in the end, what we look for in the marriage is not something that you would need, when we are truly married, what we really want is

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sympathy, understanding and companionship. So similarly, we should know where the relationship is, if you want it to grow. So these seven steps, if one has to follow it, understand it, follow it, apply it in all circumstances, then what you are saying is yes, we can all attend, listen. Absolutely. And if you go on to the second one, to get rid of the myths, the wrong thinking. Now, if you think for example, that you know what, for one to be happy, one has to have a perfect partner, for example, if you're going to have that attitude, you're never going to be happy. So you need to ask yourself, what is it that is wrong in your thinking, in that way, you'll be able to get rid of

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the myths because the myths themselves will hold you back. If for example, you have this pure, romantic notion of life, that life is all about that then your view of life is jaundice, because it goes far beyond the kind of myths that you are exposed to then the other one

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Because this, that you need to be critical about yourself, I mean, you should know what I'm doing is wrong, then you need immediately before it exacerbates and compounds into a major problem. You said, No, what I'm doing is wrong, my tone of voice is wrong, what am I doing, and then you change accordingly. You need to manage yourself before you expect to manage other people. The other critical thing that very few people do shamima is to have relationship values. For example, you could say that in our home, as couples, will decide the following things are critical. Our values are about sharing our love sharing our pain, about communicating, you decide what is important to

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the couples. And once you do that, then you'll find your relationship is authentic, because both of you have contributed almost to the credo or the creed, as it were. And then the last two or three, rather, you need to connect with your spouse, when you speak. Are you speaking from your heart? Are you connecting with the heart? What is the level of communication? What about the sincerity when you tell her that I love you? Do you mean every word of it does she believe you is it followed up by action, and you need to connect only when you connect with your spouse, then there'll be trust, they'll be love, and there'll be commitment. The other thing is to manage the relationship because a

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relationship is something that is static, the relationship would be under pressure sometimes because of external events, maybe because of internal dynamics. So you got to manage it. And one of my friends often speaks about this is that you need to service the relationship all the time to keep it alive, you need to contribute to it. And when both partners contribute to it, it makes a huge difference. And the last but not least, it must be underpinned by Islamic values. We need to look at the Quran. We need to look at the eloquent example Nabi sallallahu, wasallam. And the examples of other Sahaba and the prophets of Allah have shown us how to deal with marriage and how to deal with

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conflict. It is having engaged you on the topic of the dynamics of marriage, you shared so much with us Alhamdulillah. And what has come out of the set of CDs is the fact that yes, there is hope there is not just a story of doom and gloom, you've shared with us basic habits, you've shared with us rules, simple things that we could do. And I'm hoping somebody is going to say, oh, but I knew that, but I just wasn't practicing it. Oh, that's so logical, because whatever you're saying, Our logical habits that we can do, it's not something really, really way out. So I'm hoping that little bits can be done at a time inshallah for each and every person to be able to improve their marriage because I

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think there is not a soul on earth who can say, my marriage is perfect, and there's nothing I can do to improve it because then that is a static marriage. Now, having said that, your final concluding remarks to a man or a woman who is really looking for that final bit of advice, cinema for me, it's about not being a spectator in your life. It's about understanding who you are understanding to what extent you are excluding negative vibes, or positive vibes of taking responsibility, because really is not so much who you are in the public domain, but who you are at home. That is, to me your crucible, or the acid test. They many people are hypocrites. They put on a cheery facade a term they

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find it so hard to accord to the other, the dignity and respect which they deserve. We need to celebrate our love, we need to get excited about each other. We need to do things differently. We need to be creative, we need to be forgiving, and say Come on, we can do it together. give hope because people come from diverse backgrounds, your partner may have a low self esteem, nurture, give us strength helps you to become more resilient, and vice versa. If we can do that to each other, that will make a huge, huge difference. Of course we need to understand the Quran and the Sunnah of Nabi sallallahu, wasallam and I say to each one of you, come on, what will it take for you to

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forgive? What will it take for you to ensure that your relationship is dynamic? My jerris brothers and sisters, like all journeys, our spiritual journey together has come to an end, your journey now begins. But there are some ingredients that are indispensable for your journey to be a pleasant and happy one. And this is what they are nobility of intention, understanding respect of roles compassion and commitment. We've gone through a period

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beautiful journey together where we discussed the dynamics of marriage. Today we are at the tail end of our CD inshallah, where we discussed how you can bring harmony into your homes. This is in essence, a combination of all the beautiful things that we have picked up together during this spiritual journey. All of us want harmony, but harmony in our homes will be elusive. If the partnership between the spouses was not a dynamic one, yes, indeed, to have happy married days, make a fresh start each morning, it is not enough to say I love you and not follow it up, you have to do both. It is imperative that you and your spouse become acutely aware of your own contribution to any

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situation or conflict. But it is more important for you to be conscious of the contribution you can make in making the home a sanctuary. Finally, Idris and I are sure that all of you are going to take a quantum leap and use all the advices given in the series of CDs in sha Allah smile. A smile costs nothing but gives much it enriches those who receive without making poor those who give. It takes a moment the memory of it sometimes lasts forever. Nothing is so rich or mighty that he can get along without it. And none is so poor, but that he can be made rich by a smile creates happiness in the home. Foster's goodwill in business and is the counter sign of friendship. It brings rest to the

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weary share to the discouraged sunshine to the sad and it is nature's best antidote for trouble. Yet it cannot be bought, begged, borrowed or stolen for it is something that is of no value to anyone until it is given away. Some people are too tired to give you a smile. Give them one of yours, as none needs a smile so much as he who has no more to give. Remember, your smile is your sadaqa