Following is the transcript of a speech I delivered in Florida. My friend Hafez Hassan khan wrote it down. I edited it and added a few things. May Allah make it beneficial for the youth and give us tawfeeq to learn and practice.
1, Tahaarat, 2, Taqwa, 3, Ta’leem 4,Tawaadhu’ 5, Suhbat, 6, Samaahat, 7, Ibadat, 8, Sadaaqat 9, Valuing time and 10, Tawba.
1, طهارة Tahaarat (staying clean)
Stay clean, Don’t stay dirty. Keep your clothes clean, keep your body clean; from all impurities, major or minor, visible or invisible.
When ghusl becomes necessary, then wash your whole body before going to school.
The reason for this is, that when a young man doesn’t take the fardh bath before leaving for school, then shaytan will keep whispering in his ears all the time.
Nowadays children become baaligh (mature) by the age of 11/12, so they need to understand all the matters that are to do with tahaarat. They need to understand that when semen comes out with excitement, whether through a wet dream or by some deliberate means, they MUST take a bath.
Therefore, the first advice that I would give to the youngsters would be, you shouldn’t leave your home without taharat (ghusl if necessary, if no need for ghusl then just do wudhu.)
This is because as the Hadith says; “Wudhu is a believer’s shield”, a bulletproof jacket. When a person is in the state of wudhu, it becomes easier to wats of shaytan’s whispers and their effects will be minimisedl. It can be said that the wudhu can help to a great degree in fighting shaytan.
Also, make sure that you keep yourself clean in a general sense, keep your clothes and your room clean.
Remember! Tahaarat is half of your Iman, therefore, by staying paak and clean you have protected your Deen to a huge degree.
2, تقويٰ Taqwa
Lead a life of taqwa; which is, to fear Allah as much as possible. Hold on to taqwa!
You must learn to fear Allah. Have faith in Allah. Believe in Allah wholeheartedly. Stay well away from sins and try to strengthen your imaan by reciting the words of Allah, ie the Quran, and by Dhikrullah.
If you do not have this taqwa, then you will commit all sorts of sins. Therefore, always fear Allah.
One story from fadhail-e-sadaqaat comes to mind, where a child was crying because he was scared of the fire of jahannam. He was asked “Why are you so scared? You are not even baaligh yet?”
The child replied, “This is because when I look at my mother lighting the fire, she puts on the small twigs to light it up and she places the larger pieces after it’s started. Therefore, I am scared that when Allah lights up the fire of jahannam, He could throw in the disobedient children first.”
It was discovered later that this child was a Sayyed ie. from the descendants of Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wasallam, hence this fear of Allah.
Like this young boy, the youth need to fear Allah; They should be fearful of Allah’s displeasure and His anger.
Having taqwa is a beautiful trait, may Allah grant us the highest level of Taqwa. Ameen
3, تعليم Education
The third thing that I would like to say is, that the youth should only take deen from the right sources.
Nowadays, the youth try to take their deen from the TV or from the internet. Many ask fatwaas from websites which are totally unreliable.
This is not right, as we do not know anything about the person sitting on the other side. We don’t know whether he is a proper shaykh or a fake sheikh.
We find people that don’t follow the sharia properly, not even in Libaas and appearance, yet they deliver fatwas which are baseless and misleading.
Remember! It is not the duty of ulama to teach you the deen, it is your responsibility to go out and search for the deen. Therefore, seeking ilm of deen from the right sources is your responsibility, and it should be sought from the qualified persons.
On the day of Qayamat, no one will move from their place until they answer four questions. One of those questions will be related to Knowledge. How you had practiced on what you had learned. This means there will be a question of whether you acquired knowledge from the right sources and practised upon it correctly or not.
Therefore, searching for the correct knowledge and practicing upon that knowledge is your responsibility.
Nowadays, we notice a culture of the speakers who merely attempt to entertain the crowd, they behave like celebrities and they are treated like that. The wa’z department has become a celebrity culture in many ways.
This is why I request the leaders of organisations that, they should check out the speakers thoroughly before letting them stand in front of the public. They should look for things like, Is his aqeeda correct? From where did he acquire knowledge? Who are his teachers? What are his credentials? etc.
This is because if the so called sheikhs give some wrong fatwas to the congregation and people start practicing on them, then it is the leaders of the organisations’ fault. They will be held to account in the court of Allah for failing to make proper checks beforehand.
So, you should be aware of all these matters because you will be asked about it. Learn your deen from reliable material and from the right people.
My advice is that don’t ask mufti Google, rather always ask people who you know and who you trust, and with whom you interact everyday in the masjid.
May Allah protect the Ummah from misleading books, deviant people and half baked bogus scholars. Ameen.
4, تواضع Tawaadhu’ (humility, humbleness)
Keep yourself humble. Be a down to earth person. Take out all the pride from your heart. Sometimes when a young man become a little religious, he starts to think he is someone great and he begins to ridicule his own father.
For example, the religious son starts to grow a beard and his father doesn’t have a beard so, he starts to fight with his father. The religious daughter starts to wear hijab and the mother doesn’t wear the hijab therefore, there are huge arguments within the house.
Listen!! Your mother is your mother and your father is your father! They are double your age or more. It is not your responsibility to start gripping everyone from the throat and force them to follow the deen.
You must learn to speak with kindness and with love.
The Quran says that even if the parents commit shirk, you still have to respect them. Don’t follow them in shirk, but speak to them with kindness and treat them well, as they are, after all, your parents.
Treat your teachers with same respect, also the professors, friends in colleges and universities and keep yourself very humble. Don’t let pride creep into your heart and lead a life of Tawaadhu’. One Hadith says “A person with an iota’s weight of pride will not be admitted into paradise” (Muslim)
5, صحبة الصالحين The company of the pious
Make it a self-preference to sit with the pious people. Keep friendship with good people only. When you go to college and universities, you become a little crazy and join the wrong groups, stay away from such madness. Your friendship should be with good people.
An Arabic poet says
“عن المرء لا تسأل و اَبصر قرينه
فان القرين بالمقارن مقتديِ
“Don’t enquire about a person; just look at the people who he hangs around with; Look at his friend circle. Because a person is a follower of his companions”
If the person sits with good people then he himself will be good and if he spends time with bad people, then he will be bad himself.
With a girl it is the same thing. If you want to marry a girl, look at her friend circle, If she spends time with good girls, then she will be good, if she is constantly in bad company, then she will not be good. These days you can check out her Facebook profile. Most girls have Facebook accounts, and they can be caught out if something fishy is going on in the background; sometimes even the parents don’t know many things.
Don’t spend time with the wrong people because it will lead you towards destruction and this is what we want to stay away from.
Allah says in Surah as-saaffaat… “Fa Aqbala ba’duhum Alaa ba’dhiy yatasaa aluun… ” The people of Jannah will turns towards one another, enquiring. One will say ‘I had a close companion. He would often say ‘Are you of the believers? Is it so that when we die and become dust & bones, we will then be recompensed?” He (the one in paradise) will say “Do you want to have a peep? Then he will peep and he will see him in a far away part of hell. He will address him “By Allah! You very nearly destroyed me. If it was not for my Rabb’s grace, I would also be from among those who are dragged forth. Were we not to die except our first death? Were we not to be seized? This (paradise) is supreme success. For this should the strivers strive.” So, bad company can drag a person towards jahannam.
This is why the mashaikh say that you should pledge allegiance to a good shaykh. This is because a shaykh is a good guide. You could ask him about the different problems that you face and request him for duas. You may ask him about what to do and what to avoid, which will help you towards your reformation. Also the more you practice on the given instructions, the better for you. Another benefit is that you will get regular Duas from your shaykh. Mashaaikh remember their mureeds without having the need to be asked.
Therefore, it is extremely important that you pledge allegiance to a shaykh, especially within these testing times.
Mufti Khalid Saifullah said “Every family has their own GP, private doctor. People say that so and so doctor is my GP, if I have any illness I go to him. Likewise, in the other fields, the family have a lawyer and they give him all their cases. We find that if our car needs fixing we go to our regular mechanic, and we trust him to fix our car.
Just as we have our GP, lawyer and mechanic, we should also have our own mufti and aalim to whom we can refer, for advice about deeni matters. We shouldn’t ask any layman, also we should have our own shaykh where we ask about every action of ours, and about our A’maal, to see whether it benefits us or not.”
Therefore, I said that you should keep good company by spending time with good people and the best of people is a good shaykh, so by pledging allegiance to a shaykh.
6, سماحة Good characters
Be good towards everyone. Always have a smiling face. Have a good sense of humour. To build up good character is also very important. Look at yourself and say to yourself what is bad within me? What are my bad habits? Once you have identified them, then you should remove those bad manners and develop good manners. Be a man of sincerity, honesty, generosity, justice, fairness, kindness, mercy and compassion.
One Hadith says “The weightiest deed to be placed in the scales on the day of judgement will be good manners.”
7, عبادة Worship
Make a habit of worshipping Allah. Worship is very important.
“Wamaa khalaqtul jinna wal insa illaa liya’budoon”
In worship, there is our benefit, not Allah’s benefit but our own benefit, Allah has angels who worship Him day and night. He is never in need of our worship. Worship is to benefit us.
Allah does not derive benefit from our Salah, zakat or fasting. Rather it benefits us and so Allah says worship me for your own good
“Ya Ayyuhalladhina Aamanurkau’ wasjudoo wa’budoo rabbakum waf’ul khayra la’akum tuflihoon”
“O believers! Bow down, prostrate worship your Rabb, do good, so that you may become successful”
Therefore, make sure you do some extra worship. Read your Salah 5 times a day, Fajr, Zohr, Asr, Maghreb, Esha and never miss your fardh Salah. Other than the fardh, also try to do some nafl worship. Read tahajjud, ishraaq, dhuha, awwabeen and make a habit of reading the Quran. In the mornings make sure you read Yasin Sharif and do whatever dhikr possible.
In worship there is success. If you worship then your deen will be protected. If you leave worship, then your deen will slip out of your hands.
We live in a time of fitnah. Rasulullah (SAW) said “Hasten towards good deeds, difficult trials and tribulations are coming”, They will be so difficult that it will feel like you are in a jungle with nothing around you and now you are stuck, eg. there is something wrong with your car, the lights have gone off, and you are alone and you can see nothing not even the stars. It is just pitch black. Then it starts to rain and so it becomes even darker. Imagine that the trials will be just like this. You will not even know where the Haq is and where is baatil. What is right and what is wrong. So before all these trial come, worship! Do good deeds! If you have a good stock of good deeds and you are still engaged in them, they will save you from the trials. With these actions, you will have brought Noor in your heart. The Noor will be a source of guidance and will protect you from the trials and tribulations.
So, only when you do good deeds, there will be protection, without the actions there won’t be any protection.
8 صداقت Sadaaqat; Telling the truth
Make a habit of telling the truth. Never tell a lie!
Don’t lie in front of your parents; don’t lie in front of your friends.
Don’t copy off other students work; work hard yourself. Lying brings all sorts of problems.
It is not of a good nature to lie, the habit of lying will have an affect on how Allah sees you. If you continue to lie. then Allah will see you as a kazzaab (liar) and if you try your best in speaking the truth, then Allah will see you as a Siddeeq, which means extremely truthful.
Try to present yourself to Allah as a truthful one, not as a liar.
If you stay good, if you stay truthful, if you show courage within the difficult times then Allah Himself will take care of you and take work of Deen from you and make you the leader of your times.
9 قيمة الوقت. Value of time
Don’t ever waste time. Value your time. Time is your most precious asset. That’s why Allah took a Qasam of it in the shortest Surah of the Quran والعصر’ “By the time”..
Nowadays, boys and girls both waste a lot of time. Wasting time on Twitter, Facebook, watching sports, watching movies, and on games. Intelligent people never waste time. Many educated people don’t keep tv in their homes and they make sure their children do their homework on time, go to sleep early and wake up early. As the old saying goes “Early to bed, early to rise, will make healthy, wealthy and wise.”
Sharia allows, light entertainment. You may have your interests but selling yourself to them is not right. Watching TV 24/7 is simply a waste of time. Don’t waste your time on TV. Respect your time and understand the value of time.
In the smallest Surah of Quran, Allah takes and oath on time and says:
“By the time! Man is loosing out! Except for people who (do 4 things)
1, believe properly,
2, do good deeds,
3, encourage one another to do good, and
4, encourage one another to be patient”
This Oath shows the value of time! Because Allah only takes Qasam of precious things. If we don’t cherish time, we are loosing out.
Hadith says “There are 2 blessings of Allah regarding which people are loosing out 1, good health (by not taking care of it) and 2, free time (by wasting it)
Hadith says “This dunya is like a farming field for the Aakhirah” ie. we sow the seeds here and reap the rewards in Aakhirah. So don’t waste time. Keep busy in planting the seeds of good deeds!
Hasan Basri rahmatullahi alayhi says: “Son of Adam! You are but the name of days. Each day that passes in your life, you have passed”
Mawlana Umar Palanpuri rahmatullahi alayhi used to say “Wasting time is like committing suicide. The difference is that, in suicide the person dies and people can see that he has expired, whereas in wasting time, we get more of it, thus we fail to realise the wastage.
Umar Ibn Abdilaziz rahmatullahi alayhi used to say :”The day and night are working on you, So work in them”
Abdullah Ibn Masud radiallahu anhu said :” I don’t regret upon anything as much as I regret on the day in which the sun sets and while my life has decreased, my Amal did not increase”
One Hadith says :”Everyday, when the sun rises, it makes an announcement “Son of Adam! Do what you can in this day because this day will never return in your life”
When Ramadhan starts an announcement is made “O seeker of good! Proceed! and O seeker of evil! Stop!”
Allah Subhanahu wa ta’aala says in a hadith Qudsi :” Son of Adam! I have created you for my worship, so don’t mess around! And I have destined your Rizq for you, so don’t tire yourself! Look for Me and you will gain Me. If you gain Me you have gained everything. If you loose Me you have lost everything and I am better for you than everything”
Another Hadith Qudsi says :” Son of Adam! Take time out for my worship and I will fill your heart with richness and I will remove your poverty whereas if you don’t do so, I will fill your hands with busy schedules and I won’t remove your neediness”
May Allah give us ability to utilise time to it’s full potential. Ameen
10 توبة. Tawbah (Repenting)
If you commit a sin, repent immediately! Make a habit of repenting and seeking forgiveness from Allah. Even if you break your tawba, repent again and again. Even if you break it 100 times, keep repenting and inshallah one day you will completely leave that sin.
Seek forgiveness every single day.
Our beloved, Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wasallam used to seek forgiveness from Allah 70/ 100 times a day, sometimes in just one sitting, Even though he was ma’soom ie. sinless.
So make a habit of continuous repentance and istighfar.
May Allah forgive our shortcomings, forgive all our sins, keep us steadfast and be pleased with us. Ameen