Thursday, 26 June 2008

Bism Allah

Bism Allah Al-Rahman Al-Rahmeen,

In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

A new blog for what I hope will be a life-changing experience for me, one I have been looking forward to for three years.

I'm off to Yemen today for the Dowra, a 40 day intensive Islamic 'summer school,' for lack of a better term. Insh'Allah we will be focusing on three aspects: knowledge, spiritual wayfaring, and daa'wa (calling to Islam).

Dar Al-Mustafa, where the classes will be held, is one of the most respected traditional Islamic learning institutions in the world. It is located in Tarim, Hadramoudt, a city that has been likened to Medina during the times of the Prophet Mohammad (Peace be upon him), and in fact is known as the Daughter of Medina. A place where time stood still.

About Yemen, Sayyiduna Abu Hurayra (Allah be pleased with him) narrates that the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said:

“The people of Yemen have come to you. They are tender-hearted and more delicate of soul. The capacity to understand (fiqh) is of the Yemenis and wisdom is that of the Yemenis.” (Sahih al-Bukhari, no: 4129 & Sahih Muslim, no: 84)

And there are many hadith that also talk about Yemen and its blessings.

I'm nervous, apprehensive about being thrown in the deep end of a culture which, although similar to my own, is still strange in many ways. From the niqab (face veil) that has to be worn at all times in a segregated society, to waking up at 3am, it's all going to be a brand new experience.

Why did I decide to go? Because:
"Seeking knowledge is the duty of every Muslim. It will enable you to be your own friend in the desert, your mainstay in solitude. It will be your companion in loneliness, your guide to happiness, your sustainer in misery, your adornment when you are amongst people and your arrow against your enemies. Whoever goes out in search of knowledge is on the path of Allah until returning." Prophet Mohammad (PBUH)

"Whoever decides to relocate solely to study sacred knowledge is forgiven before even setting out." Prophet Mohammad (PBUH)

So my intention for going is:

نويت التعلم والتعليم٬ والتذكروالتذكير٬ والنفع والإنتفاع٬ والإفادة والاستفادة٬
والحث على التمسك بكتاب الله٬ وسنة رسوله٬ والدعاء الى الهدى٬ والدلالة على الخير
ابتغاء وجه الله ومرضاته وقربه وثوابه سبحانه وتعالى

"I intend learning and teaching; reminding myself and reminding others; benefiting myself and benefiting others; encouraging people to hold fast to the Book of Allah and the sunna of the Messenger of Allah (PBUH); calling people to guidance; guiding people to good, and [in doing all this] seeking the countenance, pleasure, nearness and the reward of Allah most High."
Imam 'Abd-Allah ibn 'Alawi al-Haddad.
A student of knowledge needs five things—humility, intention, patience, a craving of knowledge, and estrangement. I'm sure I have three of those things, and here's hoping I can cultivate my humility and patience.

Bism Allah.

(For more about Tarim, see this beautiful short documentary by Sheikh Yahya Rhodus titled City of Light).


Salmah said...

I would like to learn arabic and islam in Yemen and the 40days dowra that u told about is most appropriate. Please advice me how to I get enrolled or get on the course. Thank you.

Umm Adham

Dora said...

Assalamua'layki dear sister..

may Allah reward you for your writings. my heart aches reading this post.. aches in a sudden longing for Rasulullah s.a.w...

2 years ago, one of my first teachers in Islam introduced me to loving Rasulullah s.a.w... to seeking knowledge in line with the Sunnahs... mashaAllah.. your Sunnah quoted intentions, Imam Al-Haddad's niyyah, Shaikh Yahya Rhodus.. all familliar.. all close to my heart.. all magnificient works of Allah!

i will have your blog in MyFavourites.. to read on your days there for it shall be my motivation to strive more.. do make du'a for me for Allah to provide me the flight and study fees neccessary.. for me to be provided good health and strength so i cd journey head on being a student of our Deen so as to please Allah..

you are a God sent sister! May Allah send His angels to istighfar for you till the Day of Judgement. Amin.