Guidance for all mankind

The past month, I have heard mixed viewpoints regarding reading the Quran in english. Many scholars have agreed that the Quran is in Arabic and no translation in any language will come close to it. The best prize would be to learn Arabic. Most of us are past our learning sell by date, so although the reward reading it in English or the language of your mother tongue may not be the same, the benefit one can get from reading it in English is better then not understanding it at all. Read it preferably in the language you understand, so you can try and understand what Allah wants from you as his ambassador on earth. As one sister rightly pointed out, when we are going to be questioned on the day of Qiyamah, what will our answer be? “We didn’t understand Arabic, so that is why we couldn’t be your Khalifah(Ambassador).” My advice is that before you embark on this journey to understand the Quran, seek advise from a learned scholar in your area on how to approach understanding it. There are many tafseers you can read that will make you understand the Quran better. If you have any questions, have a dialogue with your local scholar so that you are clear what Allah wants from you. We must understand that the Quran is the Word of Allah. I think the fear that some scholars rightly have is that many misinterpret the Quran and this can be dangerous for the faith.

Some facts about the Quran
Revelation: It was revealed to the Prophet Muhammad (may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon Him) over a period of 23 years.
No. of Chapters (Surah) 114
Revealed in Makkah 86
Revealed in Madinah 28
Total number of verses 6239
Longest chapter (Surah) Chapter 2 (Suratul Baqarah): 286 verses
Shortest chapter Chapter 108 (Suratul Kauthar) 3 verses
Number of Juz – 30

Tools to memorise the names of Surahs of the Quran
Sister Najma sent me some wonderful tools in assisting us to memorise the names of the Surahs of the Quran. To create the love of the Quran, and instil it our children at a young age, it would help give them some tools that they can relate directly to the Quran. The tools are:
Surah name Memorising tool
Surah Index charts
Juz Recogniser for when you are listening to the Quran and want to recognise in which para the surah is in

Other Quran links

  • Read the South African style 13 line Quran
  • Learn english meaning of 80% of words in Quran
  • Listen to Mufti Menk’s Tafseer
  • Read the Quran in English
  • Read Tafsir ibn Kathir for commentary on the Quran with Hadith
  • Read summarised Reflections of the Quran by Amr Khaled
  • Learn Arabic Online
  • Other recommended Tafsir Maariful Quraan by Mufti Shafi Usmani
  • The Messenger (PBUH) will complain to Allah on the Day of Judgment that his people neglected the Qur’an (Surah al-Furqan 25:30). Neglect of the Qur’an is of different levels, as Ibn al-Qayyim writes: not reciting or listening to it;
    not studying and understanding it;
    not conveying its message;
    not judging by it in personal and communal matters, at all levels of society;
    not believing in it.

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    LENASIA SKOP, SKIET RADIO DRAMA

    My little one was speaking to her nanima on Friday. In the background I heard commotion on the radio station my mother was listening to. I asked what’s happening, she said she doesn’t know. I switched on to the Radio Islam broadcast. I have never heard someone so excited, nervous, out of breath, confused, pumping with adrenalin and full of life ever on an Islamic radio station before. 2 criminals stole from a pharmacy and tried to escape by going down Cuckoo avenue in Lenasia close to the Radio Islam offices. It was the biggest mistake they could make because Azhar Vadi was on their tracks. He managed to get everyone who was listening worked up. “No, they in the school, no they not in the school, no they in this house, not they jumped into that house. No, there are 2, no there are 4.” All I could think was thank goodness my Nanima isn’t living in Lenasia Ext1, because if she heard all this commotion, her high blood pressure would have shot up sky high. For the elderly things like this could be fatal. I just found the whole broadcast very exciting but a little irresponsible because of the amount of worry and anxiety it caused especially to the parents of the school that was nearby the whole incident. As my mother said she hopes someone gave Azhar some sugar water to calm down.

    Azhar Vadi at SABC community media awards

    Azhar Vadi at SABC community media awards

    Where’s Wally?

    I have never seen so many grown man squirm in my life, like when we watched Wally’s open heart operation on TV. I hope he is doing well and not overindulging on the free Nandos. As Wally opened his heart to us, I am sure it was a real eye opener to all of us on how we abuse our bodies. The “Meet Wally’s Heart” campaign was initiated by the Heart and Stroke Foundation of South Africa to alert people to the dangers of poor lifestyle and dietary choices that lead to heart disease. A lot of people were disgusted that most of the adverts were sponsored by the unhealthiest food around. None the less, it was amazing to see how they rip open you chest to take out such a tiny little vessel that can be so fatal.When I saw them remove that vein or artery or whatever it was, it reminded me of when I wash my already washed chickens and remove all the remaining bloody parts. I am sure every Nanima would be great at open heart surgery. Deveining the hearts and then stiching the pieces back together.Pity I failed needlework and don’t wash my own chickens, otherwise I would have been great at it.

    Excess baggage

    A few weeks ago, my mother and her sisters were lucky enough to get air tickets to Europe fully paid. Destination London: to make mulaakaat/visit with all the family in that part of the world. They were flying to Germany and from there with Al Cheapo Air were going to London. The message I was given was tell them to have only 20kg luggage in 1 bag each to London. The messenger always gets shot. I had to duck bullets from all angles matrix style.. getting shot and firing a few shots back.. no one listening to anyone.. only collecting more and more extra dead weight to carry from here to London. The weekend before was hectic: some trying to lose weight, others trying to get rid of baggage from the past, others carrying the burdens of others. Judgement day arrived when the weighing began. My mother’s clothes were only 10kg. Her total baggage weight was 47kg. She was 27kg overweight. Every kg costs about R100 plus. We found out to post a 10kg parcel from here to London can cost R6000. I rather buy a plane ticket and deliver it personally. Sometimes you really have to weigh your options. Is the parcel worth the price that has to be paid for it? If you are taking a R10: 1kg coarse salt from here to London, in essence you will be paying R110 for that salt. Is it worth it? Let’s say when money talks everyone listens. Only after the sponsors heard about this and realised that their money was going to be used for excess baggage and air hostesses were going to enjoy dried fruit by the kilo, did the trio start listening and letting go of the extra weight. Amazingly enough after all the commotion, they were still overweight by 1kg each and were allowed to go through, only discarding a camphor cream in their hand luggage(I would have rubbed the whole tub on my body and then through the tub in the bin). They were really praying for their lives. Let’s hope they don’t think the return trip will be as smooth sailing because our trip from London to Germany was were all the dammal (trouble) began..

    BEAT THE PRICE

    A few weekends ago we needed to buy a gift urgently. As procrastinators go, at the 11th hour we decided to go and buy it. They told us they didn’t have the product in the shop but only at their warehouse. We asked if the warehouse would be open. The salesman, hungry for a sale, told us that it closes at 13h30. It was 12h30 when we decided to buy the appliance. We paid for the product and rushed to the warehouse in record time. We reached there at 13h05.The security guard pointed at the sign saying closes at 13h00. The warehouse manager was there as well, adamantly not allowing anyone in. We begged and pleaded as we needed the gift urgently and since it was Saturday we wouldn’t get that specific thing anywhere else. The man totally ignored us and was actually rude. We told him that we were sent by the store and they said it only closes at 13h30. He didn’t care. I was so upset, I lost my patience and cool and in the heat of the moment I actually swore the guy and as we were driving off we could only hear this very angry man screaming at the top of his voice. I am so ashamed at the way I behaved, in retrospect, was my dignity, the price I had to pay for not getting my way. We went back to the store that was playing games with us, lethargically they tried to get the product at another warehouse, we were not liss to find this place, so we asked for a refund. Thereafter, we went to a few other furnisher stores, playing the beat the price game. Our predicament they didn’t have the product in the store but at the warehouse which was opening on Monday and even if they could beat the price we had to prove if the other places had stock at the store. What is the point of that? We are the generation of fast food and instant gratification, when we want something we want it NOW!!! We went back home, surfed the net, called another furnisher shop in Eastgate. They told us they had the product at the store and they will beat the price. It was 16h25 and they were closing at 17h00. We rushed like the amazing race game. On the way we realized no petrol so that delayed us for a few seconds. We reached the shop at 16h55. I had to crawl under the gate as they were closing. When we get there, where is the appliance at the WAREHOUSE!!!!!!! Lucky for the salesman, he managed to arrange the product for Sunday at 12h00 and he agreed to beat the price.

    The amazing race to beat the price

    The amazing race to beat the price

    NAMESAKE

    Some say Pietersburg, Some say Polokwane; Some say Makhado, Some say Louis Tri, Messina, Musina let’s call the hold thing off. Some say Witbank, other’s say Emahahleni, Some say Pretoria other’s Tshwane, Tzaneen, Tzaneen let’s call the hold thing of. This past holiday we decided to take a border to border road trip of the North Eastern part of the country. Let’s say Limpopo felt like a foreign country. Even if we had a South African map book, we would have still been lost. Every town’s name has changed. Louis Tri still has an identity crisis. Some boards say Makhado other’s say Louis tri. Someone actually went and pasted Louis Tri back on most of the boards. I think they forgot one or two boards near Musina. Whose bright idea was it to change Messina to Musina? We had a great trip. We stayed at Tshipise that had hot spring pools. We visited the SANPARK Magubane Game reserve. (The reserve where three borders meet: i.e. Zim, Bots and Mzanzi.) Let me say even the animals are finding the grasser greener in Bots. Only monkeys were seen on this side of the border. It’s amazing that the big 5 are always in the most exclusive game reserves that charge $350 per night. The last day of the trip we decided to drive through the Kruger National Park in 1 day. Beautiful. We started off at the Pafuri gate and ended at Crocodile Bridge, near the Komatipoort border post of Mozambique. We managed to see a lion and lionesses busy. Lot’s of elephants. Lot’s of babies as well. Baby elephant, giraffe, zebra, bucks. Cutie pies made my cutie pie’s day. Our roadtrip ended in Emahlahleni-Witbank where we rested from the long drives. Ja, we were borderline cases, from Pontdrift, to Beit Bridge to Komatipoort. Nanima would like to welcome Nirvana Polokwane and Pine Ridge Emahlahleni
    to the Nanima website. It was nice to see Nanima posters placed all around Nirvana and even nicer to know that Pine Ridge also heard about Nanima.

    BEGGAR MY NEIGHBOUR

    Yesterday I was walking out of restaurant and I saw an elderly lady with her adult paraplegic child on her lap. I decided to give her something. When I gave her the money I was curious to know and asked her “why was she sitting there and isn’t it uncomfortable for the child to be sitting like that there on her lap?” She was so insulted by my enquiry. Why am I asking her this question, I don’t know what she is going through. She is homeless etc. I further enquired if she knew about the disability grants? She made at first as if she didn’t know but eventually corrected me that it is R900 and asked if I will survive on that every month. When I went home this whole incident was still playing in my head. Was my action judged by my intention? I reexamined my intention. Did I ask this question because I wanted to assist, was I concerned about the child’s uncomfortablness OR was I concerned about how uncomfortable this scene made me feel. I think it was a mixture of all, so maybe that why I was received with such hostility. It really makes you wonder what goes on in the heads of all the mother’s sitting with their toddlers at the robots in the hot sun. It also makes you wonder how many blind beggars are found at nearly every intersection. I watched something very disturbing on TV once, it showed how someone broke a child’s arms and legs so that he can become a beggar. Desperate times call for desperate measures.

    Mother and child

    Mother and child