Channel: Mufti Menk
Warming up and warming down are understood by sportsmen. However, in the spiritual sense it needs to be understood. This talk reminds us of why and how to prepare for such a blessed season – Ramadhaan.
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Salam Alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh
smilla rahmanir rahim al hamdu Lillah wa Salatu was Salam ala rasulillah Allah Allah He was happy Hajj mine. All praise is due to Allah subhanho wa Taala blessings and salutations upon Muhammad sallallahu alayhi wa sallam, his household, his companions May Allah subhanho wa Taala, bless them and bless every one of us and grant us goodness in the dunya and the afra. I mean, my brothers and sisters, whenever there is something important, we need to prepare for it. This is not only when it comes to sports, or when it comes to a rehearsal of an event that we are planning to host. But rather more importantly, it is also when we have something religious, something connected to Allah
subhanho wa Taala. Something connected to our faith, that is absolutely important. We need to plan and prepare. For example, if you have a day of eat,
the day of lead requires lots of planning lots of preparation, you need to first plan
on the level of the masjid, for example, the timing of the Salah who will lead the Salah, how long it may, for example, last what will happen at the masjid, the sound system, for example, the facility how many people are expected to come? All this is part of preparation. Then, if we were to have the people who attend, they would also need to prepare, how am I going to go? Who's going to take me What am I going to wear when it comes to the day of eat? What am I going to wear? What am I going to do for the rest of the day and so on. Now, the best and the most spiritually elevated season is the season of fasting. And that is known as the month of Ramadan. Every time we hear
Ramadan, even the non Muslims know what we're talking about. They know that people become muslims for that month who are already Muslims. What that means is they take their religion seriously for a month, those who go to the nightclubs on the last day of Shabbat and they tell their comrades that you know what you're not going to see me for a month. It's Ramadan.
Come The day of eat. Unfortunately, you and I know what happens. Those who commit sin they say listen, it's the month of Ramadan, no more drinking. But my brothers and sisters, let's ask ourselves a serious question. Is it not that we achieve so much of spiritual elevation in Ramadan, we feel so close to Allah subhanho wa Taala in the month of Ramadan, we can feel the Baraka and the blessings in the month of Ramadan. Do you know one of the reasons is because we have dedicated ourselves to Allah, we have dedicated ourselves to being proper Muslim. As a result of that we achieve so much of calmness, we achieve contentment because we are now closer to Allah. We are
fulfilling our Salah we are engaging in extra prayer at night we abstain from that which is prohibited or that would be that which would incur the Wrath of Allah subhanho wa Taala as a result, you feel good Ramadan, you know the the body feels good, the mind feels good, the we all feel very good people are generous people are smiling and so on. That is the beauty of the obedience of Allah subhanho wa Taala So I invite yourselves and myself to say from now if we are to obey Allah from now if we are to dedicate ourselves to Allah, I promise you we will already start smelling the scent of this contentment and goodness and more so beyond Ramadan if we continue, I promise you we will taste
the sweetness of that blessing and mercy of Allah subhanho wa Taala
way beyond the month of Ramadan.
This is why there are two important things for us to note number one is during this month of Shaban the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam is reported to have fasted more than any other month besides Ramadan. So there is a narration that says the Prophet sallallahu wasallam did not fast any month outside of Ramadan more than he did during the month of Shabbat. One might ask why? Well, there are many reasons but obviously the prime reason would be to earn closeness to Allah. And if you gain closeness to Allah, what happens if you gain closeness to Allah subhanho wa Taala automatically everything starts falling into place. You are content even when something in inverted commas bad
happens to you. Why I say that is because, in essence for a believer, nothing bad actually happens. It's just a test from Allah. It's temporary. It's
In this world for a little while, you will be tested with pain with hardship with difficulty with loss with loss in terms of life loss in terms of sustenance and wealth, loss in your business, perhaps a little bit of hunger, sickness and disease, all that is part of your taste in the world. Every soul goes through that during the stint on earth May Allah subhanho wa Taala make it easy for us. So you become content because now you are plugging in with Allah. You start fasting during the month of Shaban the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam used to fast regularly every Monday and Thursday.
every Monday and Thursday, no one on earth debates this. It's the sooner that was practiced by the prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam, on most occasions with us. I promise you, some of us, a lot of us, the majority of us, we haven't even done it once. I wouldn't like to embarrass myself and yourselves by asking you how many of you fast every Monday and Thursday? We probably would see two hands. How many of you have ever fasted because of the Monday fast and the Thursday fast? That is unanimously as soon as of Muhammad sallallahu alayhi wa sallam. I don't think we would see many hands. Now. The idea is not to show the hands but the idea is to think within ourselves. Let me
start, let me do it once every month. I will try once at least Monday, Thursday. Okay, there is another bonus from Muhammad sallallahu alayhi wa sallam also earning the closeness to Allah. And when Allah is close to you, everything becomes easy. You difficulty in your hardship, you find ease, because you know Allah is close to you, you are close to Allah. When there is a hardship, you get up and you pray to Allah, you feel so good and calm, you feel relaxed, even though you've just lost a lot of money, even though you've just lost your job, even though something disastrous has gone on in your life, but you are calm because you are close to Allah. He is your owner, we always say in Nan
de la he was in La Jolla, LA, Joan, we all belong to Allah, Who do we belong to? Allah, we all belong to Allah. And unto him is our ultimate return. People have already gone and returned to Allah, we are next in line, we are going to return to Allah some early some late so it is not worth our while to spend our lives against the command of Allah when we have to go back to the same Allah. You see, when I have to return to Allah, what is the benefit for me to transgress against the same Allah I'm going to return to? If you hear that, on a certain road on a certain highway going to South Africa, for example, there are policeman trapping, at this point 40 kilometers outside of
gweru. What will you do? When you get to 30 kilometres outside of gweru? you slow down? Because why? I heard from someone that there are policemen at the 40 kilometer pig, right? You pass the 40 kilometer pig you see the policeman you say yes, I was told about it. Sometimes you won't see the policeman. So then you're going to find your friend and say, listen, there was no one he says, well, they were there this morning. Or they were there yesterday, and they were clapping. What did you do? You heard from someone about a warning on the road. So you decided to believe them. Although there was no revelation involved. They could be telling the truth. They could be telling a lie. And and
you slowed down and you nobody in their right frame of mind would knowingly go way beyond the speed limit. And they know that they're policemen right here. I don't think in any country in the world. Would they do that if they knew that there was a proper trap to try and track the people as you know haps it happens in this country. Now draw the example we are on a highway right now in this world. We are getting to death, death is part of the highway and then we have Allah subhanho wa Taala. To answer to completely everything's going to be collected and there is a messenger sent to you with revelation warning you that 40 kilometers outside of Guru there is a trap. This is just an example
okay. So you and I know that this issue this problem, this difficulty this hardship that we have in this world is all part and parcel of the test of Allah subhanho wa Taala we are told that we are going somewhere what is the point of us breaking the rules knowing that a few kilometres down the road we are going to be answerable to Allah subhanho wa Taala.
Now I want to give you another example. Ramadan is 40 kilometers away if you want to word it that way, which means it is around the corner. Ramadan is around the corner. Now if we were
To obey Allah from now stay away from prohibition. It's like the five kilometers before. You see, I told you at 3535 kilometers you already slowed down because you know, at 40 there is something from now you start preparing the Prophet sallallahu Sallam used to prepare. One of the ways was to fast more in the month of Shaban and guess what? After the month of Ramadan, he didn't give up. He says, Whoever fasts the month of Ramadan, and thereafter follows it through with six more fasts of show Well, for them, all their previous sins will be forgiven.
Man sama, Ravana, tomato Sita Misha while Kanika Sammy dar sorry, the Hadith doesn't say all their sins will be forgiven. But the Hadith says something even beyond it says the it will be equivalent to having fasted the entire year. That's what the Hadith says. It will be equivalent to having fasted the entire year. What is the aim and objective? There are many, primarily the pleasure of Allah. But secondary is to dedicate yourself to say, Oh Allah, I fasted in the month of Ramadan, I'm not going to give up now that it has happened.
Now that it has come, I'm not going to give up well, Allah has a lot of us the day of he spells the day of return to the sinful behavior we had before Ramadan. Let's be honest, change that my brothers and sisters, this is why we stagnate. This is why we remain in one position we go backwards regarding our faith, because before and after huge seasons such as Ramadan, we were disobeying Allah. That's not fair. So let's start from now. And this is why the prophets Allah, Allah, Allah said, I'm used to fast the three days of the month, every single month, he used to ensure the Islamic calendar, which a lot of us don't even follow except for Ramadan and eat. Right?
If I were to ask you, what's the Islamic day today? Okay, I think a lot of people might know because Ramadan is around the corner. Mashallah. But last month, who knew? had none of us, the chi might also be guilty here, but I'm just saying that this is how the world has become, we've given less importance to the Islamic month, we are supposed to be fasting 13th 14th and 15th. If we do fast, we just ask the people So when are we supposed to fast? They say, Oh, it's the Wednesday Thursday and Friday this month. So then you fast without even knowing in reality, is that actually the date you just faster, but we should be giving more importance to the Islamic date? Yesterday, someone asked
me, What is your birthday? I told them Why? They said because I think you and I were born on the same day. So I told them 18th of Juma the 3013 9580. They said, What? What's that? I said, What do you mean? What's that? That's my birthday.
Now, if you take a careful look at that answer. In actual fact, as a Muslim, that's the correct answer. But how many of us even know our birthdays? And then we say, you know, we asked a question, is it okay to celebrate birthdays? And then I asked, which one?
Because you don't know which one are you referring to? Do you even know your birthday that you want to celebrate it? The answer is no 90% or 95% of us don't know our birthdays. So what I'm trying to say is let's give importance to what Allah has given importance to at least beyond knowing only the days of eat. When we see the moon It is assumed to see the moon every lunar month, and to go out into search for it is an act of worship Subhana Allah, it's an act of worship. But what do we do we only see the moon during or when they eat is coming or in Ramadan is coming. In fact, when Ramadan is entering, some might not even be interested. But when the ad is coming, definitely, this is why
when we were children, and as we grew up, when you listen to other children, when they see the moon at any time of the year, they look at it and they say there's the moon tomorrow, is it? Have you had children say that? The reason is, according to them, you only look at the moon because of it. Now as you grow up, it's not supposed to be the case. You look at the moon and you know this is the beginning of the Islamic month Mashallah. So that I can fast on the 13th 14th and 15th. Going back to my original point. This was the run up to Ramadan, and what they calling what they call it in,
in the gym. You know what they call it in the gym. They call it warm up. You warm up run up to Ramadan. So before your main exercise, you have to do your stretches. You have to warm up a bit you have to make sure you're okay you know you're about to read 20 to 20 units of Salah 40 units of Salah 60 units of Salah because you are going to be reading your sooner and your nothing inshallah I'm not talking of the night prayer alone. I'm talking of the night prayer plus
The other prayers during the day when we read our Salah to vote, we're not just going to give up four units and that's it, we're going to make our sooner and are nothing and we are going to increase with the 100 and so on. Because that is the month of Ramadan, your reward is multiplied. So what I'm going to do I need to warm up from now spiritually by increasing number one, my fasts before Ramadan, increase your fast
when it was the last day of Shabbat, the Prophet sallallahu Sallam did not use too fast. Why? Because it would perhaps be known as Yama shock sometimes y'all must check meaning if the moon has been seen hasn't been seen. And some people say okay, let's just fast to be on the safe side. In Islam for Ramadan. There's nothing like being on the safe side, you either have seen the moon or you haven't seen the moon, the moon has either been cited, or it hasn't been sighted. You cannot say okay to be on the safe side, let me just read it. You know, may Allah subhanho wa Taala grant us ease. So
the same would apply when it comes to
the gym. Once you're done with your exercise, guess what you need to do nowadays, they call it a warm down if I'm not mistaken, and warming down. What is warming down when I was a kid, I never knew what warming down meant. We just ran from A to Zed did all our physic physical education. They used to call it PE physical training PT. And we used to come and go and that's it. After When the bell rings, you're back in the next class. Now they say no, you finish five minutes before and you warm down. You do your stretches. And they are now teaching us that it's more important to do the warm down than the warm up at the beginning. So warm up warm down. My brothers, my sisters, we understand
physical training sports, warm up, warm down.
What about Ramadan? It is far greater, it is spiritual, you are going to be standing in taraweeh at least long units long units. It's not sure. You don't want to be one of those who constantly looks at his watch. You know, I've seen people actually do it. They they look at their watch. And then they shake their head in Salah, shaking their head why you haven't done a warm up and you're not interested in a warm down. That was you let that not happen. I've seen people do that honestly. And I was shocked because you know now I'm an Imam myself and we cannot read fast. The Imam. We as Muslims who read behind the Imam, we need to encourage him to read quality, quality. Because that's
the word of Allah. When you are weak, you say hey, this Imam doesn't know how to read because he finishes 10 minutes late, everyone else finishes early, he will be 10 minutes earlier into general that's what will happen. You know why? Because he read properly not even 10 he will be in general way beyond those who want to rush How can you rush the word of Allah ask those who speak the Arabic language, if they can understand what is being recited, you are reading the correct speed. If they cannot follow then trust me you are reading the wrong speed. The Quran is RBU mubin it is in clear Arabic. So if there is someone behind who speaks proper Arabic And he can follow the recitation, it
means you are reading at a good speed. But if he cannot follow
that means what are you doing with the word of Allah? It is a message for people and you are just whipping through it. The idea is never ever to complete the Quran. Did you know that the idea was never ever to complete the entire plan? No, never. The idea is the quality. If the quality is there, then you may complete the entire plan. If the quality is not there, trust me. You rather read from alimta to the end and you will achieve a bigger reward for quality than to go in for quantity. These are teachings of the month of Ramadan. Allah says, Allah, Allah azza wa jal hyah Tony Abou
sanheim Allah, Allah has created death in life for the purpose of testing you who has better deeds. He didn't say who has more deeds. So I can say I'm supposed to be in front of you because you know what, in tarawih had made 60 units 60 record No,
that's not going to be a better person, a better person is He who read what was quality. You know, when someone gives you something, say you go to the shop, the you pay for something, and it's a box of chocolates, and they give you the one that's damaged and smashed. And you're gonna say no, no, no, hang on, either give me my money back or give me a better box. But he says look, I'll open the box and show you the chocolates are not touched. I'm not interested. The chocolates can be how they are. I want a box that is not empty, and it's there. It's on the shelf. Right. We do that with our deeds. We have good deeds we are about to do but the quality is not there.
We want all those 20 chocolates, right? But now we don't mind anything. It's damaged, not damaged. But for the other chocolates that we're going to eat.
We want the proper box. Make sure we're lucky when you're presenting your deeds to Allah. Put it in a proper box, pack it nicely. Be beautifully comfortable. When you say Allahu Akbar, forget about the whole dunion forget about everything that's going to happen outside, you know, in some of the machines, Mashallah they distribute milk after, every in the evening, for those who come later on. Some people even have food, it's not part and parcel of the taraweeh. Not at all, but it's just in order to perhaps feed those who have come from a distance. Some communities don't even understand that, for example, because they say, Why are you giving food? what's the what's the issue, while
we're giving food because people have come from far and wide. And you know what, they need to have something at least and we thought, let them concentrate rather on the salad and on the food. Now, still, there are people who say you better finish quickly because the milk is going to get cold, or because the food is going to get swiped. I'm going to only be getting from the bottom of the of the dish, you know. So if that's the case, what is the quality of the box that your chocolates are in? I tell you, it's damaged.
It's damaged, improve the box comm Allahu Akbar even if you've lost out you know, Masha Allah, may Allah subhanho wa Taala make it easy for all of us. So the idea of today's lecture is to prepare us for Ramadan. And to tell us from now we need to start doing certain things I want to tell you another way of improving two more things.
Number one is when you read your Salah, now we spoke about fasting, right? When you read your Salah, take your time.
Take your time, I promise you you are packaging your deed in the best possible package. best possible package. You know, when you order a burger from somewhere, I can give you these food examples because we are not yet in Ramadan. Right. When you order a burger from some way. What is the main thing in the burger? Is it not the patty in the middle? Is it you know there's a beef burger. So there's a beef patty, there's a chicken burger. So this chicken Patty mutton, there's a mutton Patty inside right. Sometimes it's good sometimes it's not grilled. Sometimes it's made by perhaps mincing it processed and sometimes it's not. It's just sliced a beautiful slice of steak in
there. So that's the main thing in the burger. Everything else is by the way, by the way, but how they prepare it for you. They put they get some nice fresh bands bread, and then they slice it they toasted a little bit on the side so to avoid the crumbs and so on. They will put tomato sauce for those who like it. They will add mayonnaise, they put a bit of sauce they add to the barbecue sauce. They put a lovely piece of lettuce nice crunchy, they put a little a few cucumbers, they put a nice piece of tomato some who like onions they'll give you a beautiful slice of onion in there. They will add something else a little bit of coleslaw and they serve it to you while it looks so beautiful
with a bit of nice deep fried chips on the side. So panela why the aim was just the petty Have they ever taken the petty and thrown it at you? You want the burger? Yeah, they've never done it. They presented properly because for you to look at it, you must want to eat it when you look at it. You see that? They show you pictures of the food in the restaurants because when you look at it they they want you to be attracted to it.
Your brain processes the food before your stomach does do you know that? So they present it while I'm drawing a different example when you given a burger to Allah decayed properly. Allah wants the further from you correct. I start off with the sooner I have enough feel. I take my time all that is beautification. All that is beautification. If you are just going to rush through your Salah trust me it's like throwing the party to someone's they have your burger and not doesn't want it. You need it. Take your time in Salah. Take your time when you say Allahu Akbar beautify it. Honestly read something good. People just read Subhana Allah one time and they up. They go to the ground before
the nose is on the ground. The whole head is already up. Don't do that. Take your time my brothers and sisters. This is your ophira this is your Jenna. This is how you will earn it. Go to sujood Subhana. Allah beautifully three times minimum and then increase it to five. What's wrong? Is it wrong to increase it to five? No, it's better. I love Allah so much. Spend a few more minutes with him. I always give an example of a haram relationship. You have someone you're not supposed to be talking to have the opposite sex, but you love to talk to them. If they want to put the phone down. No, no hang on two more minutes. Why? It's Haram. shavon is beautifying it a haram relation you know
you are permitted to spend more time with someone haram but
it was gentle. You cannot spend too much
minutes with him. Tara we people complain we're lucky every year. There is an examination there is there are records that go down every year. You know what the record is? The angels write down who is complaining about the Salah.
and in the masjid. We are divided into groups. There are people who enjoy the Salah It was 10 minutes longer than anywhere else. Because the Imam was reading correctly with the jeep. He's worried about his Ashura. You know, the Hadith says, you can recite a bill for Ani Nicaragua, tequila, tilaka makuta, turati lofi dunya for him and zilliqa. In the UK, he is
a person who has the Quran in his heart, he will be told on the Day of Judgment read and as you are reading go up, read in the same way that you used to read in the dunya. That's the catch. That's the catch. So if the Imam used to come in and he used to zoom through his Salah in front of Allah, He will not be able to read in any other way. He will only be able to read how he read in the dunya.
So be careful. You need to slow your Imam down, slow him down. say look, you know what? Today you read, we couldn't follow your words. If we can't follow your words, there is something wrong, please slow down a bit and go to the people like what I'm doing today. I'm encouraging everyone, every one of us needs to encourage the others Brother, don't you think this is too fast? You might get someone says what it's so slow. Say No brother, yes, this is for Allah. You know, it's not even in a harem relationship, we're ready to take time. This is the most legitimate relationship that will help you not only in the dunya but even in the era. So you need to make sure that the quality of your Salah
improves from today so that you enjoy taraweeh
you know, if you haven't done a warm up and you enter into the rugby match, you probably will suffer you know some form of muscular spasm and so on because you didn't warm up.
Remember, it's a different example from Yvonne but the process lm used to fast in chabanne a lot. He used to also the salah and the quality of the Salah I don't even need to talk about because that was the view of Allah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam. And the last thing I want to tell you my brothers and sisters, Ramadan is the month of the Quran from now.
I encourage you yourselves and myself very very strongly
from now pick up the Quran every day.
Preferably in the morning, it's good
and read at least one verse
at least one this
it will change your life. I swear by Allah it will change your life every day how many minutes will that take? You know on WhatsApp, we spent five hours no problem. This will take five minutes and on the same phone that you have WhatsApp. You have downloaded the Quran already, but you've never used it.
You asked the Muslims How many of you have downloaded the Quran in your phone? Everyone puts up their hand Yeah, I downloaded downloaded. How many of you have read the downloaded Quran? Hey, it's only five people in the masjid here.
Why it will bear witness against you on the day of pm Alcor on to laka Oh Allah, the Quran will bear witness for you or against you this man downloaded me Never use me ever. It was just and you know there were so many in the in the machine and elsewhere and in the house we never used the Quran will help you to enter into Jenna it's the word of Allah. It will bear witness for you. It has intercession Amazing, amazing. The Quran and your good deeds, they will intercede on your behalf. So develop a relationship with Allah through fasting through reading more salah and through your relationship with the Quran. May Allah subhanho wa Taala grant us all the best month of Ramadan And
may Allah subhanho wa Taala Bless you all may Allah subhanho wa Taala really make us from those who can benefit from this beautiful month perhaps next week. You may hear a little bit more about this beautiful month of Ramadan and how we can prepare for it in other ways as well. Apollo cola has what stopped Villa Holly welcome Melissa a Muslim in first of Euro was Allahu wa Sallim wa barik ala nabina Muhammad