Newsletter (1st Jan’14 – 15th Jan’14)

Fortnightly Newsletter

(1st January '14 - 15th January `14)

Compiled by: Azeem Ayub



In the Name of Allah,
the Most Gracious,
the Ever Merciful



The Keep-it-Simple Rule and Islam


Are God’s expectations from humans easy to fulfil? If they are, should we not let others do what they are doing and not get involved in unnecessarily disturbing them by declaring what they are doing as un-Islamic? Also, should we not let non-Muslims remain what they are? Isn’t it an unnatural expectation from them to convert to a completely new religion? If we are expecting non-Muslims to convert, why shouldn’t Muslims be expected to conform to the truth within their own faith? Is changing from one religious view to another not difficult? If it is, how then is Islam easy to follow? Why can’t we follow the Keep-It-Simple rule in Islam?


God Almighty wants us to make things easy for us. This is what He has to say: “Allah desires ease for you; He does not desire hardship for you.” (2:185) The Prophet (sws) strongly urged his followers to “make things easy and don’t make them difficult. Give them good news and don’t scare them away.”1  However, easiness in religion has to be done in the way the Almighty wants us to do it. It should not be mistaken for casualness. Here are the outlines of the easy way, as I understand, the Almighty wants us to follow:


i) One has always got to remain open to truth. It is only in that way that one acquires true faith. Laziness in matters of truth is an offence, though hopefully a minor one, but unjustifiable stubbornness in the matter of truth is an inexcusable crime. By the latter what I mean is that you refuse to take interest in the truth simply because you are already attached to some other ideology and you don’t want a new one to disturb you. In the process of comparing the contestants for truth, if I am confused, the Almighty would accept it as a valid excuse, inshā Allah. Ignoring the truth, however, can never be a part of the otherwise desirable keep-It-simple formula.


ii) There is no Muslim vs non-Muslim divide in the eyes of God. No one is at a disadvantage in this trial of life. Muslims are expected to be open to truth quite as much as the non-Muslims are. Those non-Muslims who know that the message of Islam is from God and are still spurning it out of arrogance are criminal kāfir (the condemned disbelievers) in the eyes of their Creator. Likewise is the case of Muslims who are guilty of a similar crime in any aspect of the truth that comes from God. So long as a person is confused about whether a certain message is from God or not, he is not guilty. The ultimate decision on all such matters will be taken, thankfully, by the All-Knowing God Himself.


iii) In matters of practice, the rule is that you are expected to follow the truth as much as is possible. God has promised that His expectations are simple. However, we need to understand them in order to follow them. That strategy would ensure that things are kept simple.


iv) In matters of new findings on religion, science, or any other discipline, we again need to remain open. Of course, not everyone is interested in everything, but if someone tells me that what I am doing right now is not acceptable to my God, then I cannot take it lightly. Even in non-religious matters, once we jump into a discussion, we have to behave like truth-seeking believers and not like truth-spurning kāfirs.


v) God Almighty has promised that He is not going to make any soul accountable for anything more than what his potential is. He has also promised that He will forgive people who repent after realizing that what they were doing was wrong and that He will only punish those who were insisting on a wrong, criminal attitude knowingly. What better keep-it-simple approach could there be than this?


vi) One of the things I am expected to do as a good believer is to get involved in the process of correcting those who are closely linked with me. Likewise, I should allow others to influence me positively whenever I am going wrong. Such an attitude of mutual correction is a demonstration of the believers’ concern for the welfare of each other. In no way does it demonstrate an unnecessary interference in the affairs of others. In fact, not doing so would be indicative of a lack of interest in the spiritual and moral welfare of the other person.



 Author: Dr Khalid Zaheer


Topic URL:


1. Bukhārī, No: 5773.


In this Issue

* The Keep-it-Simple
    Rule & Islam

Read & Reflect
* Insurance

 Debate & Discuss
Discussion Forum:
    Family & Marriage:
    Core Issues

 return to the top ^

Express & Explain
* General Discussion
   each Other

 return to the top ^ 

Pause & Ponder
*  Why Should Men
    head a Family?



*  Successful


















Read and Reflect



Javed Ahmad Ghamidi
(Tr. by Shehzad Saleem)


Insurance is a sort of contract for mutual help in which people pay a fixed amount in installments. The purpose is that if any of them is inflicted with losses relating to their persons or their wealth they are compensated from this pooled money in a prescribed manner. The money given is never returned and all the people or institutes which provide this service are granted this right by people who enter into this contract of mutual help with them that in return for this service they can spend the accumulated money in whatever way they want.


This is an extraordinary scheme which has been chalked out to compensate losses and to help people in difficult circumstances. Its benefits are now acknowledged everywhere. After the termination of the institutions of tribes, fraternities and ‘āqilah, this is the best substitute for them which contemporary economic systems have provided to this world. There seem to be no objection against it; however, Islamic scholars generally regard it to be prohibited. Following are the objections they have raised against Insurance:


1. The amounts which Insurance Companies pay to their clients are generally more than the installments their clients have paid them; this is interest and interest is forbidden in Islam. Moreover, Insurance Companies further invest this money in interest-based schemes. Some part of the interest earned by them is also used in paying off their clients who had bought their insurance policies.


2. Insurance Policy holders repeatedly receive large sums of money against death, accidents or losses. This is gambling which is prohibited in the Islamic sharī‘ah.


3. The entity for which an Insurance Policy is bought does not typically exist; the locus of the contract is also not ascertained and the Policy holders do not even know the number of installments and the time till which they will have to pay them. In the terminology of the jurists these are called gharar (deception), jahālah (ignorance) and ghaban (embezzlement) respectively in the presence of which no contract is allowable. The Prophet (sws) has forbidden such deals.


A little deliberation will show that all these three objections are baseless.


The first of these is not tenable because the installments paid by an Insurance Policy holder are not loans. They are given by him for the help and support of others on the condition that he too could be the recipient. Thus they are never returned. If Insurance institutions invest them in interest-bearing transactions, it is because they have been given the right by the policy holders to use them. No responsibility of the nature of this use rests on the Policy holders. If a person is to receive Insurance money for the purpose he had bought an Insurance Policy, then as per the contract, he receives it from the accumulated amount. This is the real nature of Insurance, and it must be viewed on its basis.


The second of these objections is not tenable because gambling is a game and a matter of purely chancing one’s luck. People who buy Insurance Policies do so to become part of a system which caters for helping one another in case of losses. The nature of the two is entirely different, and the basis of religious directives is not marginal similarity between two things; it is and should be based on the actual nature of the two.


The third of these objections is not tenable because the directives of the Prophet (sws) related to gharar (deception), jahālah (ignorance) and ghaban (embezzlement) are not of the nature of an absolute prohibition: they are meant to resolve disputes and to close the door to ways which may result in these evils in cases of financial transactions. Insurance, however, is not a financial transaction. It is a scheme which relates to mutual help. It is executed and managed by individuals and institutions who are given the right to use the accumulated money in return for the service they provide. It is not appropriate at all to judge it by ignoring the nature of this scheme.


(Translated from Maqāmāt by Shehzad Saleem)


Read URL:


  Debate and Discuss

Discussion Forum: Family and Marriage: Core Issues

Topic: Dowery

I would like to know if dowry needs to be paid in full before marriage or it can be settled after marriage.

Student Affairs
Depends what the bride wants, because it's a gift to her from the groom. However it should have been offered by the groom and the amount clearly mentioned and documented at the time of the nikah/marriage contract because it has been described as an obligation of the marriage contract in Qur'an; (the purpose of the dowry is to represent the importance and seriousness of this life time contract)

What about the dowry system in Indo Pak sub-continent?

The girl's family provides the boy with everything which they can afford starting from crockery to furniture car house etc. Isn't this practice un Islamic?

Sister, of course this is un Islamic but unfortunately we've to live with it and have to tackle this issue very wisely.

It must be clear that Dowry (Mahr) is something else and as has been described above that it's an obligatory thing.

It's not compulsory to be paid in full before marriage but as said earlier it must be settled before Nikah ceremony. However, at any time, wife can leave it partially or fully by her own will or she can return it as much as she wants to if she has already received it.

I have my concern on "Mahr".

When religion binds men to be fully responsible for "Economics" after marriage bond, it is obvious in this directive, that, women rule in economics or financial matters of society is limited or Non-existent. And men are the sole runner of finance or economics.

The trend has changed now in modern times.

Women have now equal opportunities not only for technical education (which lead to highly money oriented Professions) but are also occupying hundred of thousands jobs, replacing men.

Earning opportunities have scared for men and it is resulting delayed marriages and other imbalances in society.

Therefore Under such conditions, it is not justified to ask men for "Mahr" or to declare them to be Wholly responsible for Financial matters after marriage.

Faysal your concern is justified, women have started working and getting good education and doing better than boys sometimes, but how many get there? Very few and how many actually work even fewer. The point is the Mahr which has to be paid to the girl in our society is not paid in most cases ever it is a ritual that it is written in our Nikahnama but in practices how many men actually pay it? Then there is the stipulation that women can take it in installments or leave it, or as pointed out even return it. I think it is an obligation for men to take their responsibility seriously and understand what marriage means.

Dear faysal, besides that please also note that despite all these changes that you've mentioned and as correctly described by Saba that by percentage such cases are still in minority. The real point that must be appreciated by all Islamic social laws is that Islam wants strong base of a Family Units. That's why by asking man to take the financial responsibilities Allah has given him a leading role in the family and has told us that what must be the roles of the husbands & wife's in the society.

Read on:

 return to the top ^


Express and Explain:


General Discussion Forum

Understanding each Other



In Pakistan we live in constant fear, violence is on the rise intolerance and isolation of factions is leading to more and more to misunderstanding. Is this going to be our legacy to our children? Will they be always looking over their shoulder? Why cant we talk to each other accept each others' point of view, can all people come together express their point of view without fear on this forum.


My first question Pakistan was created for Muslims to practice Islam and live without fear. Whose version of Islam? and are we living without fear?




..........Whose version of Islam?.........

Of course the version of the One who named us Muslims.

The term Muslim signifies "one who surrenders himself to God"; correspondingly, Islam denotes "self-surrender to God". Both these terms are applied in the Qur’an to all who believe in the One God and affirm this belief by an unequivocal acceptance of His revealed messages. Since the Qur’an represents the final and most universal of these divine revelations, the believers are called upon to follow the guidance of its Apostle and thus to become an example for all mankind

The religion of Islam is:

(1)free of any dogma or mystical proposition which might make the Qur'anic doctrine difficult to understand or might even conflict with man’s innate reason;

(2) it avoids all complicated ritual or system of taboos which would impose undue restrictions on mans everyday life;

(3) it rejects all self-mortification and exaggerated asceticism, which must unavoidably conflict with mans true nature and

(4) it takes fully into account the fact that "man has been created weak’’ (4:28).

Al-Hajj (The Pilgrimage)


وَجَاهِدُوا فِي اللَّهِ حَقَّ جِهَادِهِ هُوَ اجْتَبَاكُمْ وَمَا جَعَلَ عَلَيْكُمْ فِي الدِّينِ مِنْ حَرَجٍ مِّلَّةَ أَبِيكُمْ إِبْرَاهِيمَ هُوَ سَمَّاكُمُ الْمُسْلِمينَ مِن قَبْلُ وَفِي هَذَا لِيَكُونَ الرَّسُولُ شَهِيدًا عَلَيْكُمْ وَتَكُونُوا شُهَدَاء عَلَى النَّاسِ فَأَقِيمُوا الصَّلَاةَ وَآتُوا الزَّكَاةَ وَاعْتَصِمُوا بِاللَّهِ هُوَ مَوْلَاكُمْ فَنِعْمَ الْمَوْلَى وَنِعْمَ النَّصِيرُ

And strive in His cause as ye ought to strive, (with sincerity and under discipline).

He has chosen you, and has imposed no difficulties on you in religion; it is the cult of your father Abraham.

It is He Who has named you Muslims, both before and in this (Revelation); that the Messenger may be a witness for you, and ye be witnesses for mankind!

So establish regular Prayer, give regular Charity, and hold fast to Allah.

He is your Protector - the Best to protect and the Best to help!

hkhan (Moderator)

"Why cant we talk to each other accept each others' point of view, can all people come together express their point of view without fear on this forum."

Welcome to SI forums saba2 with salam (peace) Of course you can express your point of view without fear on this forum so go ahead please.


Thank you for the warm welcome Hina.

when I said whose version of Islam I meant whose interpretation , which sect and I disagree Islam is not a difficult religion to follow its basis is on our niyat and our instinct of judgment of deciding right and wrong.

It takes man as a social being and lays its laws which are fair to all.

The problem is when different sects interpret and insist their interpretation is right and willing to take each other's lives for it.

Suicide bombings killing of women attacks on minorities has given rise to fear and the policy of submission because you have no choice, or mass migration if you have one.

What happened to laying basic principles and then leaving the rest to the people? Quran leaves according to me a lot of grey areas where the judgment is left to individuals why should we impose our interpretation on the rest.

Every day things have become a strain on our lives. Listening to music, if you are a music lover should you hide that fact? Because maybe your neighbor might not agree with it and react to it in a very unpleasant manner. The way women dress when going outside or dealing with people in offices or any jobs, do they wear hijab ?cover their face ? a coat on their dress ? a chader? or just plain dress with head uncovered short sleeves or long ones? Does an Islamic state have a right to dictate a dress to a woman or a man? Should it not be a choice of an individual? We are all going to be judged by God on the day of Judgment so why are we insistent on judging in this life time. All states have Civil laws to judge criminal offences so should we in Islamic perspective but keeping a medium path.

God has given us the right to choose our lives' path and given us guidelines to decide whether we are choosing the right path or the wrong one. All human beings have the right to earn a lawful earning education and a right to choose your husband or wife.

If we fulfill these responsibilities and protect the innocent and weak from aggression then we are half way there to a better life and maybe in the eyes of God better human beings.


Topic URL :


  Pause and Ponder

Why Should Men head a Family?


According to the Qur'ān, husbands are the guardians of their wives. Why is that so? Why should they head a family?


Men and women are the two building blocks of the smallest unit of the society: the family. The Almighty has made them such that they complement one another. In other words, they are not duplicates of one another; they are different from each other. By complement is meant that they complete certain voids present in each other. This also is precisely why they need one another to form a family. The Qur’ān says that for a healthy society, both sexes should acknowledge each other's inborn qualities and characteristics and not become jealous:

And in no way covet those things in which Allah has bestowed you His gifts more freely on some of you than on others: Men shall be given a share from what they earn and women shall be given a share from what they earn, and ask Allah of His bounty. For Allah has full knowledge of all things. (4:32)

In other words, what the Qur’ān is implying here is that the real sphere of competition is not natural abilities for they have been bestowed by the Almighty; it is the sphere in which one uses these abilities to earn for one’s self some reward in the Hereafter in which men and women should strive and compete with each other.

After spelling out the correct attitude in this regard, the Qur’ān, goes on to say:

Men are the guardians of women because Allah has given one superiority over the other and because they [--- men ---] support them from their means. (4:34)

According to this verse, men are more suited to head a family because of the fact that they are physically and temperamentally more suited. This suitability has been ingrained in their nature by the Almighty. Their physical strength and mental disposition make them more appropriate of the two to carry out this responsibility. The word qawwām (guardian) combines in it the concepts of physical protection and moral responsibility.

The second reason pointed out by this verse for this choice is that on a man lies the responsibility of earning for his wife and children. It is but natural for one who financially maintains and looks after the individuals entrusted to him to be at the helm of their affairs. In this regard, however, it must remain clear that Islam does not forbid women to earn a living. It has only freed them from the responsibility of earning, which lies upon men. It also needs to be understood that the verse does not say that the one among the husband or wife who supports the family should become the head;. husbands, whether their wives earn or not, are liable for this responsibility. A women may earn if she likes or if some need arises, but since she has not been entrusted with this duty she has not been given the governing position in the family.

The verse, it should remain in consideration, very clearly states that men's superiority to women is not absolute; it is only relative and confined to certain spheres. Consequently, there are certain spheres in which women by nature -- physical, physiological as well as psychological -- are far superior to men and much more suitable to do certain tasks.


Dr Shehzad Saleem






Successful Participants


ID Course Country Grade
12843 Belief in God USA A
12795 Family and Marriage: Core Issues UK C+
4411 Interpreting the Qur'an USA C+
4411 Introduction to the Hadith USA C+
4411 Islamic Customs and Etiquette USA E+
4411 Islamic Punishments: Basic Directives USA C+
12495 Islamic Punishments: Misconceptions USA D+
4411 Islamic Punishments: Misconceptions USA C
4411 Issues Related to Interest USA B+
4411 Language of the Qur'an USA D+
12656 Norms of Gender Interaction USA B+
4411 Norms of Gender Interaction USA C+
4411 Preaching Islam USA A+
12366 Revelation of the Qur'an USA C
4411 Revelation of the Qur'an USA C+
4411 The Directives of Jihād USA A+
4411 The Fast USA B
4411 The Prayer USA C+
12699 The Religion of Islam USA A+
4411 The Religion of Islam USA C+
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