Posts tagged ‘Muslims’

March 17, 2014

Photowalk at Harappa & Those who Prayed there

by Khanum

Have you seen life after death? I saw it yesterday, at Harappa.

On a morning that promised a hectic day ahead, I embarked on a journey organized by prestigious Photo Mazdoor to the ruins of centuries old Indus Civilisation.  My cousin brother also joined me on this photowalk but unfortunately due a death incident in his family, he had to get off at Sahiwal and hurry towards his home.

I carried on.

I like travelling, to a certain point. I love exploring new places to a greater extent, but what I dislike about my exploring routine, sometimes, is when I miss my salat during my travels. There’s always an option to find the spot somehow and pray, if not possible then do Qaza prayers when you get back at home, of course, but still– the Muslim inside feels burdened when prayers that are supposed to be prayed on time just slip out of hands. And yesterday, I felt this burden again when I saw a group of people offering their prayers at Harappa.

Here’s a little Interesting recap.

Harappa is one challenging place to photograph. Being a photographer, I say this because everything around there is lifeless. That’s right. That’s the status of life there.

Utterly barren, devoid of warmth and full of history lessons that are perhaps not meant to capture but to merely acknowledge. The place I feel, is more designed by Allah Almighty to take heed from in this century. Yet photo mazdoors did a great job at digging up graves. I mean, we all literally did best at photography there by photographing the impossible place ever. Some people found pretty birds there to capture. A beautiful shot , I must say, taken by a photo mazdoor.

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Photo Mazdoors made a quite a noise there by arranging BBQ in the middle of ruins! No joke. 

Everywhere I looked, everywhere we all looked, there were just white-brown sands. Graves, Bushes and colorless trees as if they were mourning the times gone by and excavations marks that told how modern men were determined to excavate the remains. I , for one, believe in photographing the details and objects that go unnoticed and voices that go unheard. For this I became almost obsessed with the bruised dirty feet of this small beggar boy sitting near the graveyard. His feet told all his history. 

But then came a surprise for me and my friend, Ayesha. We noticed something extra ordinary there. I wish I had captured that beautiful evidence of extra ordinary life. Subhan Allah! There stood a beautiful tree at the side of a small place dedicated to Masjid for prayers. Every tree around it was dull, too dark in color or either not so pretty to look at or even notice. But this tree was — this one particular gorgeous tree was so Fresh and so Green that my friend and I kept looking at it for quite some time.

Then after lunch when we were packing up to leave the lifeless place behind, I noticed a guy from the group standing at that place and offering his salat. Subhan Allah! Then there went another. One, two , perhaps more than 3 men I noticed, prayed their salat at there, one after another. I admire them for this act of piety. How I wished I could also join them, stand behind and offer my prayer before it gets too late but I don’t know why, I didn’t dare go there. I am always shy to offer my prayers at a public place, in an open area. It’s something that always makes me miss my prayers on travels. Sometimes there’s no water for Wudhu, at other times I am too shy to get up and do it. It’s my error, I fully acknowledge this. But watching those few good men, glorifying Allah’s Name at that barren place, despite the hurdles in way, filled my heart with a strange hope, happiness & confidence for prayers in future travels.

The whole world is a Masjid for the believers where we can worship Allah Almighty. No one has an excuse to miss prayers for this reason.

I will , in shaa Allah, make time and space for my salah during travelling as well. And I concluded, there are 3 things that a Muslim should always carry with him when he/she embarks on a journey.

1- Compass for Qibla detection

2- Praying mat

3- And water for wudhu

To Photo Mazdoor team, I am grateful for the well organized photowalk. Every team member is friendly. The chief organizer himself is a like a good younger brother of mine.

They always make sure the trip is secure. This time even a family joined us which was great. Photo Mazdoor always makes sure that breakfast/lunch and every tea break is a healthy one. The water bottles distributed to the participants is always sufficient, Alhamdulillah. I remember how they made a special announcement on the Qila Rohtas trip, about dangers of dehydration there and gave us Nestle Water bottles with instructions to keep drinking water during photographing the place. There’s no doubt that they work hard.

However, here’s a little suggestion that I feel could make their future travels even more deen friendly.

A little cooperation required for making time and space for salah.

Since we go with them, and there are different people on every trip with different needs and lifestyles, It would be great if they include the praying point in their routine and announcement as well. If there’s no proper spot for prayer, they should locate one and announce that those interested in offering their prayers, especially females, they should head towards that spot. If bathrooms are nearby for wudhu, it’s alright but sometimes there are places where clean water is not available, in that scenario, extra water bottles should be offered for wudhu. People should be assured that no person would be left behind if they stop and make their prayers first. This way, if they make it a part of their announcement and arrangements, those who want to offer their prayers would be guided well and assured comfort. I, for one, would be more comfortable at announcing that I want to offer my prayer without drawing attention to myself. Otherwise, I keep debating inside, on every photography trip, whether to raise my voice or not when I can’t spot a clean and out of sight place for prayers.

I hope Photo Mazdoor would consider my friendly suggestion as they always welcome suggestions and even complaints. So generous of them. I wish the team all the best for future trips and extend my regards for the efforts they put in to make their photowalks interesting.

I would upload my photography of the place in the coming week, iA. 

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October 14, 2013

WOW!

by Khanum

Hajj Mabrook everyone !!! I quickly wanted to share some miracles today. Quickly because after getting to know these miracles, it is best to give you your own space and time to think about what a miraculous life you are living being a Muslim.


 

 

 

Alhamdulillah. I’m a Muslim.

Let’s make neeyah for Hajj 2014. May Allah give us all taufeeq.

Ameen. Allahumma Ameen.

P.S Click here if you wish to have a 3D experiences of Haj and Holy Places.

August 21, 2012

Yet more of Celestial Beauty… Eid Mubarak

by Khanum

Following are the shots of Moon during the month of Ramadan , captured time to time till the end of second ashra.

Ofcourse nothing can beat the moon sighting with a naked eye – but pictures taken with a natural hint of bokeh are perhaps I like the most. Last one being the favourite.

Eid Mubarak

July 31, 2012

Who let those dogs out and why aren’t they in Yet?!!!

by Khanum

My mind – that is not easily taken to the heights of temper – is boiling mad right now! Nonetheless its my own self slowly dissolving into this anger of not being able to do anything for the humans, the Muslims being hunt down in Burma. Atrocious, dirt, insanity, rage , crippled , disdained, shot down , cursed! what not am I feeling !!! I have been watching , observing, tolerating , sulking , cursing and just cursing in heart the massacre that is just not coming to an end! I have been watching all this in hope – and what hope? Was it just a pep talk given by me to my ownself each day or this was the height of my being insensitive to all this ? I have seen people shouting where is humanity lost. And I am a part of this society this hypocrite system – mind you! I admit I am !! But even still, I saw Writers , writing , commentators commenting, newscasters : informing!! They all doing their job , but that’s it ? done ? Oh wow! So now we are just narrowed down to play our social roles and professional roles and done?! Wonder is it to satisfy our ownselves to flee the guilt that we may feel in case if we don’t get up and get it out of our systems like I am just doing or is it because We are really messed up beings having no power but the power of writing, again like I am doing !!! There are people raising voices at social networking sites.Twitter, facebook, this book that book! You name is and there you have it. Hashtags used to make the phrase STOP KILLINGS MUSLIMS IN BURMA appearant enough and then again the next moment all calm, all passion for the Muslims rescue curbed down!

This is not just a test for those Muslims being burned down, cut down hunt down in Burma. This is our damn test as well. And Its getting heavier and heavier and choking day by day on and On! Try leave asking for your self and pray just for those innocents in each prayer, do you have the heart to do that ? You need self hatred for that first– self hatred for always bloody being damn concerned over your own life your own demands. And do not dare raise a finger on God here. He didn’t make you healthy and wealthy just to dance about in the world or totally lost logic and start killing in the name of so called damn self created religion.

This is our own created mess.

When I couldn’t control the anger boiling inside, I put a damn short status on facebook hell , “Where the heck is UN, and NATO now” and there came a flood of answers shouting HUMANITY IS DEAD! MUSLIMS ARE DEAD. MUSLIM NATIONS ARE DEAD!

DEAD? what the heck am I doing here then ?? why the heck all those handful of people shedding tears for them ? Why am I concerned over who let those dogs out and why aren’t they bloody in yet for killing thousands of innocent humans. That can’t be all for the citizens of this Universe. There has to be more. the humans who have no concern for humanity – their own humanity to be specific – I am just saying , WE ! COLLECTIVELY AS MUSLIMS – that goes out to the Arabs wearing silk gowns , sitting on leathered chairs, The Not so respected Leaders of Muslim states all over the world, The crap organisations where they sit like dummies just worried over HOW TO PUT SANCTIONS over Iranian Nuclear Program, How to win Olympics 2012 this year, how to bloody win that oil tank, The selfish – hypocrite and self obsessed people that unfortunately lead us, You guys! have failed to curb down this situation. And we are letting u do so. Shame on US!

As if the blood of Palestinians wasn’t enough…..

July 26, 2012

Is your Ramadan going the right way, O’ Muslims?

by Khanum

Many a times what happens is, we wait for the holy month of Ramadan with such great fervour and zeal but when it actually arrives, 1day of passionate fasting happens and that’s pretty much it. The laziness after iftar and the sleepy eyes at Suhoor time takes over. I usually try to take a nap after zuhr but that 1 minute nap , we all know, is actually a big satanic movement! You too end up sleeping till maghrib then dont u ? 😀 dont hide now.

I have met many people in life who skip suhoor just for the sake of better sleep. And then I have met those people as well who have no interest in offering prayers what-so-ever.

“I am fasting yar! Pls don’t bother me. :@

I am fasting, ah , please massage my head. 😦

I am fasting, oh my God, how much time left? 😦

HOW DARE YOU!  ask me to do that work?, I am fasting Bro dont u know? :O

Uff I dont feel like walking or moving man,  😦 I am FASTING”

Yeah right! Fasting!!

That’s no fasting Dear Lazy Muslim. Please revise your Ramadan routine and put your heart and soul into this month. I know you may have your own level of spirituality you know, like I have my own where I dont like people poking in their noses  so you might have your own space with Lord ALmighty where you are given free hand at many things in life but listen human, you can’t use that as an excuse to skip the obligatory acts that includes offering 5 times prayers a day. Getting ?

I observed the routine of many people and I came across some pretty cool chart by Productive Muslim as well on how to form your Ramadan routine. As you can see below it’s a very basic yet complicated looking thing.

People who wanna do the “struggle” , keyword struggle to fast better would bother follow that but I am basically speaking of “lazy” people in my post, keyword lazy, who are at the first step of Fasting. So I made out a very easy chart for your understanding.

This Ramadan, Your Goal is One. TO PLEASE ALLAH ALMIGHTY ALONE.

How to Achieve this target ? Simply follow the basics.

1- Wake up for Suhoor with a happy and content heart. Do not be lazy.

2- Finish suhoor and Offer your 1st Daily obligatory prayer, Fajr. Do not be lazy.

3-Keep praying all your prayers through out day , Zuhr and Asr with the same determination and love for God that you had at Suhoor. Pls, do not be lazy.

4- Break your fast at Maghrib, don’t overdose yourself and pray the Maghrib and then Isha properly with witr *if you don’t wish to pray extra nafal during night*

Offer Taraweeh if you please, if you don’t want to do that just go to bed when you please and offer the same cycle again.

Congratulations! You are now a productive Muslim headed in the right direction this Ramadan!

Apart from this please keep in mind, there are some etiquettes of living as a Muslim that get high during the holy month of Ramadan. Meaning, we are expected to behave more good during this month. Lying, backbitting, stabbing, murdering, saying evil, doing evil, hearing evil all this must be STOPPED! I shall speak on this in detail in another post INsha Allah, for now, just do yourself a favor 🙂 be good and have a Happy Ramadan.

Praying isn’t hard for a Muslim. Its just a prayer, Muslim. If you seem to run away from the number of Rakat then don’t panic, just offer the farz i.e., obligatory prayer units and there you go. Allah will Love you so much for it. 🙂

I remember in childhood, we used to have this fantasy that Allah has a phone number and the phone number is 24434! If you notice, its the obligatory prayer units number for each prayer, 2 for Fajr, 4 for Zuhr, 4 for Aser then 3 for Maghrib and 4 for Isha.  Simple and easy. How often do u dial it? Daily?

And if you wish to enhance your your routine further, take a step ahead. Read Quran as much as you can., May it be a single surah or few verses of the Quran even on your smartphone. If you make a routine a determination that after Fajr or before going to bed you will read atleast 5 verses of Quran daily, trust me you’ll soon be reading more than that and more frequently. And Subhan Allah, the ajar the immense immense ajar for that deed is beyond our measures : )

So stead fast, fasten your seat belts and get going! You have an important appointment with Allah each day this month  or perhaps, throughout the year if you really ponder. And lastly pray as much as you can. Sincere pious Dua is your ticket out from the fitnah of this world and the akhirah!

Oh you who believe! Fasting is prescribed to you as it was prescribed to those before you, that you many learn piety and righteousness” (Quran, 2:183)

Assalam o alaikum!

February 7, 2012

A Different Kind of Love Story – By Faraz Omer

by Khanum

The exceptional characteristics some people display are quite dumbfounding really, particularly when you put yourself in their shoes. This story published in today’s Saudi Gazette is one such.Unfortunately, the Gazette didn’t publish it online, but one can find it in the Feb. 18 print edition on Page 3. Let me type the story up for you:

JEDDAH — The love between an Islamic preacher with special needs and a Holy Qur’an teacher has turned into marriage.

The touching story began when Abdullah Banimah, who is completely paralyzed appeared on a satellite television program talking about spreading the message of Islam in several countries in the world.

When his future wife saw the program she immediately told her father about her desire to marry him because she admired him for courageously facing up to his disability and for dedicating his life to Islamic preaching.

Their dream turned true Tuesday when their friends queued along the road leading to the Al-Salam Wedding Hall in Jeddah to wish the couple a happy married life.

Abdullah had almost drowned in a swimming pool at a sports club in Jeddah. He had remained underwater for 15 minutes. This caused a great deal of damage to his brain which resulted in his paralysis.The incident made him change his life completely by dedicating it to Islamic work.

Dhaiffallah bin Saad Al-Ghamadi, the bride’s father, said: “My daughter, who works as teacher for one of the Holy Qur’an memorization schools in Jeddah, chose Abdullah on her own. After insisting she wanted to get married to him, I bowed to her will.”Dhaifallah said the reason for marrying Abdullah is for them to work hand-in-hand in the way of Allah.

Omar Banamh, the groom’s father, said: “I have nothing to say but to pray to Allah to crown this marriage by blessing them with pious offspring.” He said he hoped Abdullah will see his children grow up with no disability.

Abdullah was ecstatic about his marriage.
“In the beginning I could not believe this was her desire. She really surprised me. I will never ever forget her noble stand and insistence on accepting me as her husband. I pray to Allah day and night to enable me to make her happy for the rest of my life.”
He said he will never forget, for the rest of his days, the many people who had gathered to wish him a happy marriage.”

Whew! What a story. Number of points there.

1. There do exist such people Masha Allah. The daughter, her father, her family should all be praised. Imagine yourself in that situation. Would you do that? Or would you allow your daughter to marry a crippled man? What about the extended family? She belongs to Al-Ghamdi family, which means she comes from the so-called “high society”. How difficult would it be for people to disregard social honor and societal pressure?.
This is why these people are special, masha Allah. May Allah increase their guidance and bless them with good in this life and the hereafter. These are the role models of a society. They deserve coverage in the media. People need good examples.

2. Look at the zeal they have for Islam. Look at how this man’s life changed after a tragedy. So the tragedy was the beginning really. A beginning of a journey insha Allah to achieve the eternal.

3. Despite all difficulties, if Allah wants to bless someone with something, it will come to you.Who would have thought a paralyzed man would get married in the first place? He not only got married, but got a wife who is Insha Allah better than many women.

4. Look at the noble way in which the woman approached the issue of marriage. She fell in love — a genuine liking for the man and wanted to marry him. She spoke to her father and her father approached the man’s family. This is so noble. It’s the pure path Islam has facilitated for men and women — marriage. At stark contrast is the lewd path, where men or women express their feelings to each other and fall into Haraam and illicit relationships. A slippery slope that pulls people down the pit of lust. There’s no love, purity or chastity — there’s only pain, selfishness and desires that turn human beings into animals.

August 5, 2011

My Muslim Brother…And my photography syndrome!

by Khanum

It’s another interesting day of Ramadan at home. One that is about to come to an end. Just few more minutes to go before we break our fast with the Call to prayer. Mum busy in the kitchen. Family set on table, praying. I stopped by to post few photos I took earlier today at home.

I was lucky to get a hold of my cousin brother while  performing his worship duties. Since It’s a rule for Men in Islam to offer their 5 times prayers in Masjid. it’s a rare sight at home to see any male member (either young or old) to be praying at house. This cousin of mine – after praying Jumu’ah in Masjid – probably decided to do some more worship at home. Such a noble soul these days. I luckily was free loaded with FUJIFILM. And you know there’s a saying, Where’s there’s Khanum with a camera, there’s a way!

   here I was caught with my camera! hence:  He went shy…..

 The last one I admit was hard to get. I had to ask him to sit properly. He would complaint. Then my mother in the background would say, ‘She’s the photographer of the house. Obey!’ hence, The Muslim Brother photography mission successful.