The Pursuit of Happiness

Assalaamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

I hope you are well.

In this dunya, we have amazing luxuries left, right and centre, all around us. Even if we are not considered rich by the people around us, we are still rich. This is because we have more than what many, many people have around the world.

We subsequently become consumed by these luxuries and our worldly lives, from flying in first class to working in a corporate position.

However, can we describe ourselves as “internally rich”? Meaning, do our hearts really feel happy?

Many people may say “how can your heart feel happy?” But when you find Allah SWT, you can tell. The feeling of weightlessness and ease within your body, specifically your heart, is a feeling like no other.

This is the true meaning of being “rich”.

Our status among the people comes from those things that will perish ultimately, such as our physical appearance, the wealth we have, the university that we went to, etc.

BUT our status with Allah SWT comes from our obedience to Allah SWT, the ultimate and only reason for our existence on this earth.

The video below inspired this post.

May Allah SWT help us to ponder upon life often and save us from being swept up in this mirage. Ameen.

http://youtu.be/OB3DYaF50pQ

Assalaamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

A Modern Muslimah ❤

Forgiving those who hurt you

Assalaamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

I hope you are well.

Just now, I was thinking about someone who had hurt me at work with the way that they spoke and the way that they were with me.

But Allah SWT inspired a beautiful thought in my mind: to forgive them and let Allah SWT deal with these affairs wholly.

The act of genuinely forgiving everyone who has ever hurt you in your life can be hard. Especially if they are deep wounds that still affect you today. However, even though I am finding it a little hard to fully and completely forgive everyone who has hurt me, what keeps me going in the right direction is remembering that Allah SWT is the All Knowing, Most Powerful and The Just so I know whatever anyone had ever done to me, they will be dealt with accordingly. This stops me from trying to make justice with my own hands.

You may think why I am looking at the name of Allah SWT “The Just” even though I said I forgive them. This is because I want justice as anyone would. Even though people may not say it, within them they will always want justice.

Forgiving and letting go will, insha’Allah, bring about a lot of relief and ease for you, helping you to fulfill your amazing potential, without having the past drag you down, leaving you depressed, unhappy and ungrateful.

I hope this helps you and if it does, please share it so that it may help someone else insha’Allah.

Assalaamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

A Modern Muslimah ❤

A Modern Muslimah Sisters’ Talks – OPEN NOW!

Disclaimer
I am not an aalima or a very learned Muslimah. I am just a normal Muslimah trying to learn more about the deen and how to implement it in the 21st century. I intend for these talks to be a way for people to share their knowledge and for us, in our busy lives, to still be able to remember and ponder upon Allah SWT and Muhammad SAW’s commands and guidance.

Bismillahir rahmaanir raheem (In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful)

I am hoping to set up sisters’ only lecture sessions on Skype, where I will prepare talks, to begin with, varying from imaan to the deen/dunya balance. After the initial stage, I will then be asking the sisters joining to compile their own talks/lectures for the participants. This will allow an open platform for people to be able to gain more confidence in speaking and a better understanding on certain topics within the deen.

To be a part of the experience, insha’Allah, there is a simple procedure. (A Skype account is required.)

1. Comment on this post saying “I’m interested.” (if you are happy to be contacted via the e-mail associated with your WordPress account.) If you would like to be contacted using a different e-mail address, please send me an e-mail at amodernmuslimah@hotmail.com with the message above.

2. Wait for an e-mail from Modern Muslimah (amodernmuslimah@hotmail.com )

3. Respond to the e-mail with the information required

4. If everything is in order, join us for the first session and beyond, insha’Allah! (Dates and times will be revealed to participants.)

Please feel free to share this with as many sisters as you like and please help me to begin this new generation of sisters’ circles!

A Modern Muslimah ❤

Facebook, Twitter and the like…

Assalamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatu, 

I hope you are well.

I was recently (about 4 hours ago) thinking to go back onto Facebook and Twitter having left them both in 2011 and 2010 respectively. However I wasn’t thinking to join the two sites again for my own personal gain and fun but instead, to move forward with ideas that I had.

I have since decided against it.

The thorough process that I was going through at the time has prompted this post, which, I hope insha’Allah, will help others to make the right decision when it comes to going anywhere near social media websites.

Let me go back a bit to when I first joined Facebook and Twitter.

I first joined Facebook when I was in year 7 (at the age of about 12 years old), and used it for reasons which were not from the Islamic teachings, if you get my gist. I was involved in things which were not beneficial and which I regret to this day, although they have taught me many lessons. I then continued to have Facebook until I was 17 years old, between year 12 and 13. During that time, my Facebook profile went through a lot, from the types and quantity of friends I had to the content I was posting. My profile seemed to grow up with me.

I then left Facebook completely after I became closer to the deen and disliked the many hours I wasted scrolling through sayings and pictures which only really affected me for a second or two before the next one came along and had the same effect.

Now on to Twitter. Twitter was a different move that was not prompted and pushed as an idea by my peers. This came about due to an interest of expressing my mind to so many people all at the same time. I therefore joined Twitter in 2010. ( I still have the first e-mail they sent to me!) I used Twitter really just to annoy, bother and stalk celebrities, following them like a dog so that wherever they went, whatever they did, whatever they said, I was aware of it and I was able to voice my opinions to them directly about it, whilst gaining replies at times! I was an official Twitter groupie.

But my Twitter stint lasted for far less time, stretching out just over a year, I believe this was cut out of my life due to the same reason as Facebook; I realised my time was too valuable to spend it traipsing through the lives of others.

Despite my disinclination towards social media on a personal level, I still believe there is great power and a lot of good that can come about through it. The revolution that was basically created through Twitter, the charity events I used to know about only through Facebook, the links that you would be able to share through them both, etc. all argue against my disinclination to have contact with social media.

As with everything though, “with great power comes great responsibility,”

JazakAllahu khairan for reading.

Assalamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatu, 

A Modern Muslimah ❤

The good side of bullying

Assalaamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

I hope you are well.

The title may have offended you or it may have evoked disgust at me for writing such a thing. However, if you read the definition and explanation of the title, you will understand, insha’Allah.

Being a person who was bullied myself, I remember every horrible emotion, thought and feeling that I felt during those hard times. And it hasn’t gone away.

But one thing that I have found during my life and even now, after everything, is a good part of me which I love.

At first, I thought it must just be that I was blessed with these qualities as everyone gets different blessings. But then I saw a link forming with this blessing within the self and bullying.

I have been watching some YouTubers for a few years now and I know quite a lot about them. One thing I know about a few of them is………that they were bullied. In high school, secondary school, middle school, you name it, they were bullied.

The special thing about these few YouTubers that were bullied is that they posses the qualities which I thought were just a blessing from Allah (SWT) to me.

The qualities that I speak about are kindness to humanity at large, a real care and concern for humanity, love for animals and the world, a desire to spread only love around the world and most importantly, a strong sense of faith, where everything comes from.

I will show you some examples of this from YouTubers that I know that are like this after being bullied.

The first YouTuber is Karim Metwaly (AreWeFamousNow/AreWeKukuNow). He is known for his loving, caring and peaceful attitude to the world.

In the video below, he speaks about the beauty of people.

The second YouTuber is Yousef Erakat (FouseyTube). He is now known for his social experiments of real life situations.

The video below is about the reactions of people to discrimination towards hijab-wearing women.

The third YouTubers are TrueStoryASA (TrueStoryASA/ASA Vlogs). They are known for being very loving towards all creatures, especially Adam Saleh.

This video is a way that they wished to just help the homeless, without realising that they would start a worldwide movement.

The fourth YouTuber is Amena Khan (Amenakin). She is known for her love of helping others by inspiring and motivating sisters/women.

This video is one of her videos in which she just talks about an issue she can speak about from a personal perspective.

These four/five YouTubers have been my evidence for bullying not being all bad.

Yes, it is definitely the one of the worst things you can go through at that time, without a doubt. But the way Allah (SWT) gives you blessings isn’t always the way that you want it to be.

Sometimes we do need to look a little bit deeper to see the light shining at the end of the tunnel.

JazakAllahu khairan for reading.

Assalaamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

A Modern Muslimah ❤

I’m back and working well!!

Assalaamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

I hope you are well.

If anyone is still there, I am back!

(Insha’Allah for good!)

Sorry for going away for soooo long but I really just didn’t have the energy to blog, between work and training and my other commitments.

I definitely will try to keep up with blogging but I can’t make any promises… 😦

I just had to come back as the community of people here is just so amazing, allowing me to be able to be with other Muslim people when I can’t physically be with other Muslim people.

So let me update you on everything that has been going on!

At work, I have been doing quite well (in my opinion!) and we have another apprentice who joined us in October. His name is James and he’s been quite nice. I have started to see how the people in my team REALLY are like, which has been interesting…. I have seen some rather bad tendencies within the team, from back-biting, lying, immorality, lewdness and much more. However, I have had to try and keep myself out of these evil sins.

A few things that I will strive to implement when I go back to work (I’m on training at the moment.) are:

– saying good things about those being spoken about
– saying something when lewdness or immorality is being spoken about
– talking to them about the Deen more
– advising them not to speak in such a manner
– trying to change the subject
– doing dhikr (if I can’t get them to stop talking about bad things)
– NOT GETTING INVOLVED, AT ALL

The workplace has become quite hard to deal with, as many of the internal customers have been quite ungrateful and just generally horrible. But I recently got a reminder as to how I should do my work, which will allow me to always be happy and never depressed. That is to do everything for Allah(SWT) only. Never for any human being but only to obtain reward. That way, if anyone doesn’t say thank you or is ungrateful, horrible, etc., it will not matter to you because you would know that you have done your deed and Allah(SWT) has seen it. That is all that matters. Period.

Another area of my day, which hasn’t had as much TLC as it deserves, is my salaah. It is quite a bold thing to say (or write!) out loud but insha’Allah through saying it and looking at how to deal with it best it may help others who are going through the same thing.
We do have a prayer room and it is lovely and bare. It has absolutely nothing to it, allowing you to really switch off from work. (Insha’Allah I will try to take a picture of it.)
Even though there are about 7 or 8 people who come to the prayer room, it is quite busy as both men and women have to share access to this one room. Resulting in salawaat not peacefully completed. Between the demands of work and the demands of the next brother who needs to pray, you are left with a short amount of time to fulfill your salaah. This means the bare essentials only, with a couple of sunnah if you’re lucky. This is detrimental to us as Muslims, because we spend so much time at work yet we don’t get to live our lives at work in a full manner.
A few tips to help with this come from a course that I took with Productive Muslim called Productivity in the Workplace (I think that’s the title….)
They are as follows:

– Don’t rush your salaah. Read shorter surahs but NEVER rush it.
– Pray at the stated times, not when you have a bit of time.
– Prioritise your salaah over your work.
– Don’t be shy in asking for a break to pray within a meeting. Just like smokers will be granted a break to smoke, you should also be entitled to take some time out to do something far greater.

Last but not least is keeping up your imaan in a workplace which has more non-Muslims than Muslims. This is a common issue in many corporate environments around the world, especially in larger companies. When I first went to work, it was a big shock for me as I had spent the two years prior to that in a college close to East London, which had a majority of Muslims and a minority of non-Muslims. (This is also where and when I started practising Islam properly, but that’s for another blog post soon, insha’Allah.) I then found it very lonely having only one hijabi sister to talk to and not even all the time. Even though I still feel that I am struggling with this, I feel as though I am getting somewhere. This is because I have been able to grasp the idea that this is another test from Allah SWT to see how I will keep up the many things that I have learned in the last two (actually 3 now!) years. I also thought that maybe it is my mission to help these non-Muslims learn about Islam and its many benefits to their lives. Therefore, I am striving to keep these goals in mind when I feel a bit lonely and down, which will help me to do a lot of good at work, insha’Allah.

Being a good Muslim at all times is what we all strive to do. Just because we are at work, we have to realise that Allah SWT is still watching our every move, listening to every word we say and knowing everything we are thinking. As Abu Productive said “Work is a testing ground for Islamic manners.”

Remembering Allah SWT often will help us in the workplace and will help us in the HereAfter insha’Allah.

I know this has been a slightly long blog post but it was an update/advice post after a LONG time! It had to be a little bit long! 😉

JazakAllahu khairan for reading.

Assalaamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

A Modern Muslimah ❤

You ARE beautiful!

Assalaamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

I hope you are well.

Being a woman, a Muslimah and someone who has been bullied about her appearance, I have always felt that thinking or, even more than that, saying that I am beautiful is a stupid thing that isn’t for me to say, think or even to believe the odd person who may say it.

However I realised today that this is a disgraceful thought to even cross my mind.

How dare I even think or say that I am not beautiful when I am one of Allah(SWT)’s Creation?

“Allah(SWT) only creates that which is beautiful and you are a part of His(SWT) Creation and don’t let anyone tell you other than that.” Mohammad Zeyara

We focus on doing things for His(SWT) Sake so why don’t we, those who don’t think of ourselves as beautiful, think of ourselves as beautiful for Allah(SWT)’s Sake?

It’s kind of like if someone was to make a huge intricately decorated cake which takes them a few days, just for you, and then for you to complain about every little detail about the cake. How would that person feel?

Bad, right?

Allah(SWT) is far more important than “that person” so really think about your thoughts on your own self.

Do a complete evaluation on yourself, looking and ACKNOWLEDGING the immense number of good things about you, whether it be your gorgeous silky hair, your caring nature, your beautiful smile or the many other amazing features which you have about yourself.

Imagine you have to do one of those job interview questions where you have to tell them your best attributes and sell yourself to the employer. Then all you have to do is insert in your best attributes.
These work particularly well in boosting your confidence and allowing yourself to be secure in your own self. (Trust me! I have done enough of them to know what I’m talking about! 🙂 )

Anyway, always remember, whatever ANYONE may say about your appearance or about you in general, you are and always will be BEAUTIFUL, since your Creator(SWT) only creates that which is beautiful!

JazakAllahu khairan.

Amenakin also has a great video up, which I took a bit of inspiration from, as well about this.

This is the video.

Recently I just found Yousef Erakat’s take on things. It was such a beautiful message!

This is the video.

Assalaamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

A Modern Muslimah ❤

My apprenticeship experience: After 3 days

Assalaamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

I hope you are well.

Sorry for not posting after my first day. I have been so tired the past 2 days as I get into the 9-5 routine.

My first day was okay but slightly boring as we just had loads of inductions, from both Human Resources and the Technology Support team. We, another apprentice and I, got acquainted with our desks and we got to know what lied ahead for us.

The second day was better as we got to go through a few installations and sort out some printer jams. We got to know how to do it and how to report a fault to the manufacturer if we can’t do anything else. We couldn’t do a lot because only one person of the Technology Support team was there and she had to take calls, as well as keeping us engaged!

The third day, i.e. yesterday, we learned a lot more, from how to resolve calls to how to add a new person into the system. The other person in the Technology Support team came in, after being ill, so we did it with him. With the woman in the team, we went through how to set up a BlackBerry for people in specific departments.

And we got a cupcake! Due to the launch of QVC Extra and QVC Style, the entire Technology department and Media department were all treated to a gorgeous cupcake!

All of the staff seem very genuine, kind, respectful, caring, understanding and very open, alhumdulillah!!! I realised this when the CEO of the company(!) came upstairs to call a member of Technology Support to help him with his problem, when he could have just got someone else to go up for him. That down-to-earth-edness (I made up this word! 🙂 ) is so amazing to see in a HUGE company and just as he doesn’t see himself too big to walk up to Technology Support himself, so does no-one else feel uncomfortable chatting and being friendly to every single person, whether they are in a department above you or a role “below you”.

From this lovely atmosphere (Alhumdulillah!), I feel like part of the company after just 3 days! I don’t think you could feel that with a lot of other companies out there!

Alhumdulillah for everything!

However, one important thing that I was thinking about was the fact that when working in an environment where it is predominantly non-Muslims, your heart may become hard as more of the love of the dunya enters into your heart.

I was wondering if you could help me by telling me some ways I could prevent this as the Akhirah is far more important than the dunya.

JazakAllahu khairan for actually reading this and being a part of my experience as well.

If you have any questions, please ask away!

JazakAllahu khairan.

Assalaamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

A Modern Muslimah ❤

It’s EID!!

Assalaamualaikum alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatu!

It’s Eid!!

Just wanted to say a huge Eid Mubarak/Mabrook!

May Allah(SWT) accept all of our fasts and may we be steadfast on the good habits which we have acquired during Ramadan! Insha’Allah ameen!

Assalaamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatu!

A Modern Muslimah ❤

I see you!

Assalaamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

I hope you are well.

As I watched a rather large spider sit there poised on the wall, as still as a statue, I glared at it, watching it’s every move to ensure that I was able to escape if it started moving.

However, as my whole attention went onto the spider and the decision as to whether it was going to come and attack me and when, I realised something truly amazing.
That this might just be a sign from Allah(SWT).

As I was so concerned about my actions and was very careful not to move heavily, in order to prevent the spider moving and running about, I thought to myself am I that concerned about my actions when it is Allah(SWT) Who(SWT) is continuously there and Who(SWT) can strike fear into a believer’s heart faster than any creature on this earth?

I sadly and regrettably realised that the answer was no.

We become worried and scared of other people’s reactions to our sins but we don’t think about the Opinion of The All Mighty(SWT) as much.

Why is this?

Why are we so forgetful of Ar-Raqeeb (The Watchful)?

Why do we not feel as ashamed when doing sinful and disgraceful deeds in front of the Most High(SWT) and the Most Powerful(SWT)?

As an ummah, especially in the West, it seems as though we have become numb to shameful deeds and grave sins, just shrugging them off. Be it looking at the awrah of a woman (it is prohibited for both women AND men), or having constant skin-to-skin contact with the opposite gender, we seem to be adopting the mentality of people that we are not and we seem to be taking on an identity that isn’t ours.

Our ways have come to us as a blessing to us, as our conduct, lives and ways have been outlined by the One(SWT) Who(SWT) knows us better than our own selves.

Insha’Allah may we all be more aware of Allah(SWT) and take care of ourselves as we are continuously being watched by Allah(SWT). Ameen.

JazakAllahu khairan.

Assalaamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

A Modern Muslimah ❤

Letting go….

Assalaamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

I hope you are well.

During Ramadan, we have left the permissible acts of eating, drinking and having marital relations for the sake of Allah(SWT). This, in itself, has been a big struggle due to the fatigue, exhaustion, hunger, thirst, reduction in mental agility and lack of concentration but our love for the One(SWT) Who(SWT) gave us these things far out-weighed our desires.

Within my life, I recently also gave up things for the sake of Allah(SWT), such as going on YouTube amongst others. This was because I could see that my time spent in these activities was being wasted and it made me realise just how little the time we have in Ramadan but also in life.

We use the extraordinary blessing of time in such a disrespectful way at times, wasting away parts of ourselves to the television and internet.

Time in Islam is such a huge blessing that there is even a surah all about time, surah al-Asr!

But going back to my main point. Leaving things for the sake of Allah(SWT) always leads to happiness, tranquility, ease and a higher level of imaan. As what we leave is most probably going to be something of the dunya, it only helps our hearts to be freed further from the dunya and it makes us become more dependent on Allah(SWT), the One(SWT) Who(SWT) created those things!

Insha’Allah may we all become of those who are able to be free from the dunya and to have full and complete reliance on Allah(SWT) only. May we also be able to use our time in a very productive way to gain the most benefit for ourselves before our deaths! Ameen.

JazakAllahu khairan.

Assalaamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

A Modern Muslimah ❤

Get out, you Muslim!

Assalaamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

I hope you are well.

Very sorry for not posting the daily suhoor/sehri updates because I’ve been excused for a week so I haven’t eaten anything for suhoor/sehri to report back on.

Today I thought that I would do a post which really is an issue in my age group and that issue/topic is…

BEING AN OUTCAST FOR BEING A MUSLIM.

Being a young person myself, I have been exposed to this, as you do become whilst living in the West.

Different things, from free-mixing to illegitimate relationships, are the norm in the West, a nation in need of dire help. To be a young Muslim, living in the West, to not have a boyfriend/girlfriend, to not drink alcohol, to not do drugs, to not be in a “relationship”, to not be flirting with every Tom, Dick and Harry, to not be lustfully gazing at the opposite gender, to not be engaged in fornication, to not be dressing to entice the opposite gender, to not be so obsessed with celebrities, to not know every single lyric of every single song, to not know every single line of every single movie, to not be obsessed with money and the dunya, to not be worshipping Satan, and to not be many other things, makes you WEIRD!

The West depicts someone as “normal” when they follow the “rulings” that they follow. As soon as you become free from the shackles of this dunya, you are seen as an outcast for not following what is the “norm”, i.e. what the people have been brainwashed to know as the norm.

As a young Muslimah who has been a part of that life outlined above, I know that there is NO benefit whatsoever that comes from it. Just a sense of emptiness and despair. When I found Islam all over again, it felt as though I was able to see properly for the first time. I remember feeling so free and ecstatic.

So what I advise the people who are encompassed by this dunya is:

1. Have a sincere and strong intention to get out of where you are.

2. Find good friends and acquaintances. (This tip is invaluable! It helped me SO much when I was finding Islam all over again.)

3. Keep striving against your nafs and Shaitaan. Even when your nafs and Shaitaan really want you to do something bad.

4. Make lots of dua, especially at the time of Tahajjud. It will help you to get to an extremely beautiful place in your imaan insha’Allah.

5. If you can’t find good friends or you have to leave them, then remember you always have Allah(SWT) really close to you at all times, closer than your jugular vein.

image

I hope this helps, insha’Allah!

May we all be blessed with the opportunity of seeing Laylatul Qadr! Insha’Allah ameen.

JazakAllahu khairan.

Assalaamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

A Modern Muslimah ❤