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Islamic Knowledge


  • Birth control during the early stages of marriage

     

     

    Question: Is it impermissible to prevent a pregnancy for a period of two years at the beginning of a marriage, so long as both husband and wife are in agreement with this, such that they can both see whether they [are compatible] to continue with the marriage or not?

    Response: This is not impermissible, however it is better not to prevent [a pregnancy], and they should join together in good and have good suspicion [about their affairs] in [the Hands of] Allaah.

     

    Reference: Fataawa Mu’aasirah – Page 80
    al-Mowsoo’ah – 3767

     Source- Shaykh Muhammad ibn Saalih al-’Uthaymeen 

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  • The first Muslims in England

     

    Sixteenth-century Elizabethan England has always had a special place in the nation's understanding of itself. But few realise that it was also the first time that Muslims began openly living, working and practising their faith in England, writes Jerry Brotton.

    From as far away as North Africa, the Middle East and Central Asia, Muslims from various walks of life found themselves in London in the 16th Century working as diplomats, merchants, translators, musicians, servants and even prostitutes.

    The reason for the Muslim presence in England stemmed from Queen Elizabeth's isolation from Catholic Europe. Her official excommunication by Pope Pius V in 1570 allowed her to act outside the papal edicts forbidding Christian trade with Muslims and create commercial and political alliances with various Islamic states, including the Moroccan Sa'adian dynasty, the Ottoman Empire and the Shi'a Persian Empire.

    She sent her diplomats and merchants into the Muslim world to exploit this theological loophole, and in return Muslims began arriving in London, variously described as "Moors", "Indians", "Negroes" and "Turks".

    Before Elizabeth's reign, England - like the rest of Christendom - understood a garbled version of Islam mainly through the bloody and polarised experiences of the Crusades.

     

    No Christian even knew the words "Islam" or "Muslim", which only entered the English language in the 17th Century. Instead they spoke of "Saracens", a name considered in medieval times to have been taken from one of Abraham's illegitimate offspring who was believed to have founded the original twelve Arab tribes.

    Christians simply could not accept that Islam was a coherent religious belief. Instead they dismissed it as a pagan polytheism or a heretical deformation of Christianity. Much Muslim theology discouraged travel into Christian lands, or the "House of War", which was regarded as a perpetual adversary of the "House of Islam".

    But with Elizabeth's accession this situation began to change. In 1562 Elizabeth's merchants reached the Persian Shah Tahmasp's court where they learned about the theological distinctions between Sunni and Shi'a beliefs, and returned to London to present the queen with a young Muslim Tatar slave girl they named Aura Soltana.

    She became the queen's "dear and well beloved" servant who wore dresses made of Granada silk and introduced Elizabeth to the fashion of wearing Spanish leather shoes.

    Hundreds of others arrived from Islamic lands and although no known memoirs survive, glimpses of their Elizabethan lives can still be gleaned from London's parish registers. In 1586 Francis Drake returned to England from Colombia with a hundred Turks who had been captured by the Spanish in the Mediterranean and press-ganged into slavery in the Americas.

    One of them, known only as Chinano, is the first known Muslim to convert to English Protestantism.

    He was baptised at St Katharine's Church near the Tower of London, where he took the name William Hawkins, and insisted that "if there were not a God in England, there was none nowhere".

    Perhaps he meant it and relished his new Anglican identity, or he knew what to say to his new English masters. Whatever the truth, like many of his fellow Turks he quickly disappeared into London's bustling life, taking with him his true religious beliefs.

    How sincere Chinano's conversion was may never be known, but he was not alone, and others like him were clearly keen to make a living in diverse urban occupations.

    They included weavers, tailors, brewers and metalsmiths. Other registers record Muslim women being baptised like Mary Fillis, a "blackamoor" daughter of a Moroccan basket-maker who after working in London as a seamstress for 13 years and "now taking some hold of faith in Jesus Christ was desirous to become a Christian".

     

    Source:-  http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-35843991

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  • The top ten of the Most Beautiful Mosques

    1.  Al Haram Mosque – Macca, Saudi Arabia

    Beautiful Mosques
    The Qur’an said that this was the first house built for humanity to worship Allah. The most famous monument in the world, Al Haram mosque or “Grand Mosque” is located in the city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. It is the largest mosque in the world and surrounds one of Islam’s holiest places, the Kaaba. The mosque is also known as the greatest Mosque. Current structure covers an area of 400,800 square meters (99.0 acres), including outdoor and indoor praying spaces and can accommodate up to 4 million people during the period of the Hajj, one of the largest annual worship of the Muslim in the world.

    2.  Al-Masjid an-Nabawi – Medina, Saudi Arabia

    Beautiful Mosques
    Al Nabawi Mosque, often called the Prophet’s Mosque, is a mosque built by the Prophet Mohammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) situated in the city of Medina. It is the second holiest site in Islam (the first being the Masjid al-Haram in Mecca). It was the second mosque built in history and is now one of the largest mosques in the world after the al-Haram mosque in Mecca. One of the most important place of this mosque is Green Dome (the center of the mosque), where the tomb of the Prophet Mohammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is located. In 1279 AD, a wooden cupola was built over the tomb which was later rebuilt and renovated multiple times in late 15th century and once in 1817. The dome was first painted green in 1837, and later became known as the Green Dome.

    3.  Al Aqsa Mosque – Jerusalem, Palestine

    Most Beautiful Mosques
    Al-Aqsa Mosque also known as Al-Aqsa and Bayt al-Muqaddas, is the third holiest site in Islam and an Islamic shrine located in the Old City of Jerusalem. In the mosque itself is part of Al-Haram ash-Sharif or “Sacred Noble Sanctuary” (together with the Dome of the Rock), a site which is also known as Temple Mount as the holiest site in Judaism, because it is believed to be The Temple of Jerusalem once stood. Muslims believe that the Prophet Mohammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) was transported from the Sacred Mosque in Mecca to the Al-Aqsa Mosque during the Night Journey. Islamic tradition states that Prophet Mohammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) led prayers toward this mosque until the seventeenth month after the emigration, when Allah ordered him to turn to the Kaaba.

    4.  Hassan II Mosque – Morocco

    Beautiful Mosques
    The Grande Mosquée Hassan II, located in Casablanca, Morocco. It is the largest mosque in the country and the 7th largest in the world. Its minaret is the world’s tallest at 210 metres (689 ft). It was completed in 1993. The minaret is 60 stories high topped by a laser, the light from which is directed towards Mecca. The mosque stands on a promontory looking out to the Atlantic Ocean, the sea bed being visible through the glass floor of the building’s hall. The walls are of hand-crafted marble and the roof is retractable. A maximum of 105,000 worshippers can gather together for prayer: 25,000 inside the mosque hall and another 80,000 on the mosque’s outside grounds.

    5.  Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddin Mosque – Brunei

    Beautiful Mosques
    Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddien Mosque is a royal Islamic mosque located in Bandar Seri Begawan, the capital of the Sultanate of Brunei. The mosque considered one of the most beautiful mosques in the Asia Pacific and a major landmark and tourist attraction of Brunei. The building was completed in 1958 and is an example of modern Islamic architecture. The mosque is built in an artificial lagoon on the banks of the Brunei River at Kampong Ayer, the “village in the water”. It has marble minarets and golden domes with courtyards and lush gardens full of fountains. The mosque is surrounded by a large number of trees and floral gardens which in Islam symbolizes heaven. The mosque unites Mughal architecture and Italian styles.

    6.  Zahir Mosque – Kedah, Malaysia

    Beautiful Mosques
    The Zahir Mosque is Kedah’s state mosque. It is located in the heart of Alor Star, the state capital of Kedah, Malaysia. It is one of the grandest and oldest mosques in Malaysia. The mosque was built in 1912, funded by Tunku Mahmud, son of the Sultan Tajuddin Mukarram Shah. The architecture from the mosque inspired by AZIZI Mosque in the city of Langkat in north Sumatra, Indonesia. The mosque was founded with five large domes symbolizing the five main principles of Islam. The state’s Quran reading competition is held annually within the premises of the mosque. This mosque has been voted the top 10 most beautiful mosques in the world.

    7.  Faisal Mosque Islamabad – Pakistan

    Beautiful Mosques
    Faisal Mosque in Islamabad is the biggest mosque in south east and southern Asia and the fourth largest mosque in the world. It was the largest mosque in the world of 1986-1993 before defeated measure by the completion of the Mosque of Hassan II in Casablanca, Morocco and after the expansion of Masjid Al-Haram (Grand Mosque) of Mecca and the Al-Masjid Al-Nabawi (Prophet’s (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) Mosque) in Medina, Saudi Arabia in the 1990s.

    8.  Taj ul Mosque – Bhopal, India

    Beautiful Mosques
    Taj-ul-Masajid literally means “The Crown of Mosques” situated in Bhopal, India. The mosque is also used as a Islamic school during the day time. It is one of the largest mosque in asia. The mosque has a pink facade topped by two 18-storey high octagonal minarets with marble domes. The mosque also has three huge bulbous domes, an impressive main hallway with attractive pillars and marble flooring resembling Mughal architecture the likes of Jama Masjid in Delhi and the huge Badshahi Mosque of Lahore. It has a courtyard with a large tank in the centre. It has a double-storeyed gateway with four recessed archways and nine cusped multifold openings in the main prayer hall.

    9.  Badshahi Mosque of Lahore – Pakistan

    Beautiful Mosques
    The Badshahi Mosque or the ‘Royal Mosque’ in Lahore, commissioned by the sixth Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb in 1671 and completed in 1673, is the second largest mosque in Pakistan and South Asia and the fifth largest mosque in the world. Epitomising the beauty, passion and grandeur of the Mughal era, it is Lahore’s most famous landmark and a major tourist attraction. Capable of accommodating 55,000 worshippers in its main prayer hall and a further 95,000 in its courtyard and porticoes, it remained the largest mosque in the world from 1673 to 1986 (a period of 313 years).

    10.  Sultan Mosque, Singapore

    Beautiful Mosques
    Sultan Mosque, located at Muscat Street and North Bridge Road in Kampong Glam Rochor District in Singapore is still considered one of the most important mosque in Singapore. Sultan mosque has stayed essentially unchanged since it was built, only with improvements made to the main hall in 1960 and annex added in 1993. It set as a national monument on March 14th 1975.

     

    SOURCE---www.wonderslist.com

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  • World’s Largest Women’s University Opens in Saudi Arabia

    Covering an area of over 8 million square meters, built for a capacity of 50,000 students, 15 colleges, a 700 bed university hospital. All built in just 2 and half years; for women. More precisely, for the women of a Muslim country.

     

    Unfortunately, the opening of Princess Noura bint Abdulrahman women's university7 earlier this month in Riyadh, largest of it's kind in the world, did not make international headlines. Looking at the attention received by other issues surrounding women, such as the driving ban, I felt that the building of this university  refuted any claims that the some laws are imposed to mistreat women or lower their status in society.  Personally, driving is a barely a concern when the women of a country are deemed deserving of such a great institution.

    If the establishment of this university is of no or little concern to the same media sources whose pens hastily move at any chance to discuss the 'oppressed' lives of the women of this country and neighboring Muslim countries, then I can only be led to question their motives. Why is it that topics of veils and male guardians turn their heads, as they feel a need to 'free' Muslim women, yet an educational institute dedicated to the same women does not seem as important?

     

    The opening of this university, should be applauded not only by Muslims, but by anyone who is truly concerned about giving Muslim women their rights. It is true that many women around the world have received the right to education, but this university goes beyond that, as it provides women the right to study in the field of their choice in an environment free of the pressures, temptations and challenges presented in a co-ed environment.

    Princess Noura university is a leading example to Muslim countries, if they truly seek to educate their women, whilst protecting and honoring them. As a Muslim woman, I am proud that the initiative to build the world's largest women's university was undertaken by a Muslim country. More so, a country that witnessed the revelation of a Religion that has always held the status of women in high esteem.

    http://muslimmatters.org/…/worlds-largest-womens-universit…/

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