23 June, 2018 | 9 Shawwal, 1439 H

"What corrupts generosity is mentioning it."

- The Prophet Muhammad (s)

Learning
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Core Curriculum

Section 1 - God, Religion and Islam: An Introduction
  • Topic 1.1 - The Problem of Evil, Suffering and Pain

  • Topic 1.2 - God, Allah and Religion

  • Topic 1.3 - Introduction to Islam

  • Topic 1.4 - What is “Religion” and What’s the Point of it Anyways?

  • Topic 1.5 - A Brief Introduction to the Prophet Muhammad (s), the Prophet of Islam

Section 2 - Foundations of Islam - Theology
  • Topic 2.1 - Entering Islam: The Shahada

  • Topic 2.2 - The Usūl al-Dīn: The Fundamental Beliefs of Islam

  • Topic 2.3 - Tawhīd: The Unity and Oneness of God in Islam

  • Topic 2.4 - Adala: Divine Justice in Islam

  • Topic 2.5 - Nubuwwa: The Purpose of Prophethood in Islam

  • Topic 2.6 - Imāmah or divinely guided leadership in Islam after the Prophet Muhammad.

  • Topic 2.7 - Maʿād: The Day of Judgment in Islam

  • Topic 2.8 - The Sharīʿa: Purpose and Practice

  • Topic 2.9 - The Islamic Concept of the Nafs: Battling the Human Ego

  • Topic 2.10 - Satan, Jinns and Angels: Their Influence in the World

  • Topic 2.11 - The Problem of Evil, Suffering and Pain

Section 3 - Foundations of Islam - Obligatory Acts
  • Topic 3.1 - Accepting Islam: Putting Faith into Action

  • Topic 3.2 - Jihād in Islamic Law and Spirituality

  • Topic 3.3 - Salāt: Obligatory Ritual Prayers in Islam

  • Topic 3.4 - Ritual Purity in Islamic Law: Understanding Tahāra and Najāsa

  • Topic 3.5 - The Five Categories of Islamic Law

  • Topic 3.6 - Tawalla and Tabarra, its Basics and Purpose

  • Topic 3.7 - The Purpose of Zakat and Khums in Islamic Law

  • Topic 3.8 - The Hajj Pilgrimage

  • Topic 3.9 - The Furūʿ al-Dīn: The Fundamental Practices of Islam

  • Topic 3.10 - Fasting in Islam, its Purpose, Dos and Don’ts

  • Topic 3.11 - Other Obligatory and Forbidden Acts in Islam

  • Topic 3.12 - Niyya: Religious Intention as the Foundation of Islamic Practice

  • Topic 3.13 - Commanding the Good and Forbidding Evil in Islam

Section 4 - Prophethood in Islam
  • Topic 4.1 - A Brief Biography of the Prophet Muhammad (s): The Prophet’s Childhood (PART I of III)

  • Topic 4.2 - Bio: The Prophet Muhammad as a Prophet of God (PART II of III)

  • Topic 4.3 - A Brief Biography of the Prophet Muhammad (s): The Prophet’s Character (PART III of III)

  • Topic 4.4 - The Prophet Muhammad (s) as Messenger and Teacher

  • Topic 4.5 - The Prophet and his Relationships

  • Topic 4.6 - The Prophet’s Sunnah and Hadith

  • Topic 4.7 - Ghadīr and Arafah: The Two Last Sermons of the Prophet

  • Topic 4.8 - Jesus and Mary in Islam

Section 5 - The Qur'an and Hadith
  • Topic 5.1 - Islam and Other Religions

  • Topic 5.2 - What is the Qur’an? A Short Introduction to Islam’s Holy Book

  • Topic 5.3 - The Structure of the Holy Qur’an

  • Topic 5.4 - The Quran and Islamic law

  • Topic 5.5 - The Qur’an, Allah and Humankind

  • Topic 5.6 - Hadith and Sunnah, difference and variations

  • Topic 5.7 - The Reliability of Hadiths

  • Topic 5.8 - A Reflection on Verses of the Holy Qur’an

  • Topic 5.9 - Hadith al-Thaqalayn

  • Topic 5.10 - Imam Ali (as) and Nahj al-Balagha.

  • Topic 5.11 - Taqlid and Tawḍih Al Masail Genre of Literature

Section 6 - Measuring Good and Bad in Islam
  • Topic 6.1 - The Effects of Our Actions in this World

  • Topic 6.2 - The Gray Areas of Islamic Law and Morality

  • Topic 6.3 - Heaven and Hell in Islam

  • Topic 6.4 - Life and Death in Islam

  • Topic 6.5 - Guidance According to Islam

  • Topic 6.6 - Fate and the Consequences of our Choices in Islam

  • Topic 6.7 - The Effect of Culture and Environment in Shaping our Religious Choices

  • Topic 6.8 - Major Sins in Islam

  • Topic 6.9 - Why Allah Allows People to Sin

  • Topic 6.10 - Repentance and Forgiveness of Sins in Islam

  • Topic 6.11 - The Three Kinds of Rights in Islam

  • Topic 6.12 - Sinning Against Others and their Delayed Punishment

  • Topic 6.13 - Kufr in Islam

  • Topic 6.14 - Trivializing the Harām

  • Topic 6.15 - Benefits of Islamic Law in this World

  • Topic 6.16 - Good and Bad Deeds: The Spiritual Consequences of our Choices

Section 7 - The Legacy of the Prophet Muhammad (s) and his Ahl al-Bayt (as)
  • Topic 7.1 - Islam and Knowledge: the Importance of Islamic Education

  • Topic 7.2 - The Ahl al-Kisa

  • Topic 7.3 - Imamah in the Qur’an

  • Topic 7.4 - Fatima al-Zahrah (as)

  • Topic 7.5 - A Brief Look at the Lives of the Imams (Imam al-Hasan until Imam Muhammad al-Baqir)

  • Topic 7.6 - A Brief Look at the Lives of the Imams (Imam Jafar al-Sadiq until Imam Hasan al-Askari)

  • Topic 7.7 - A Brief Look at the Life and Importance of Imam al-Mahdi (aj)

  • Topic 7.8 - Salawat and Atonement in Islam

  • Topic 7.9 - The Companions (Sahaba) of the Prophet According to the Qur’an

  • Topic 7.10 - Clerical Hierarchies in Muslim Communities

  • Topic 7.11 - Mosques in Islam

  • Topic 7.12 - The Philosophy of Karbala and Majalis

  • Topic 7.13 - A Brief Biography of Imam Ali ibn Abi Talib (as)

  • Topic 7.14 - The Battle of Karbala: A Brief History

Section 8 - Islamic Relationships, Sects and Conflicts
  • Topic 8.1 - Misconceptions about Shi’ism

  • Topic 8.2 - Major Sects of Islam

  • Topic 8.3 - Islam and Religious Conflicts

  • Topic 8.4 - Islam and Rights

  • Topic 8.5 - Sunnism and Shi’ism, beginnings and historical developments.

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Special Topics

Section 9 - Independent Topics
  • Topic 9.1 - Muslim Converts – Welcome to Islam!

  • Topic 9.2 - Basic Dos and Don’ts of Being a Muslim

  • Topic 9.3 - Halal Food and Zabiha

  • Topic 9.4 - Family, Parents and Marriage in Islam

  • Topic 9.5 - Marriage in Islam

  • Topic 9.6 - Islam and Sex

  • Topic 9.7 - Modesty in Islam

  • Topic 9.8 - Women’s Menstruation in Islam

  • Topic 9.9 - Music, Alcohol, Drugs and Pork in Islam

  • Topic 9.10 - Islam and Science

  • Topic 9.11 - A Reading List of Islamic Knowledge

  • Topic 9.13 - Ritual Prayers and Supplications in Islam

  • Topic 9.14 - Death & Burial Rituals in Islam

  • Topic 9.15 - The Battle of Armageddon: An Islamic View

  • Topic 9.16 - The Muslim Calendar

  • Topic 9.17 - Muslims and non-Muslims in the Shariah

  • Topic 9.18 - A Timeline of Major Events in Islamic History

  • Topic 9.19 - Introducing the Qur’an: Why it is the way it is

  • Topic 9.20 - The School of Imam Jafar al-Sadiq

  • Topic 9.21 - Major Fields in Islamic Studies

  • Topic 9.22 - The Caliphate in Sunni and Shia Islam

  • Topic 9.24 - Islam, Racism and Anti-Semitism

Section 10 - Islam, Religion, and Modern Controversies
  • Topic 10.1 - Modern Fallacies about God: where Theists and Atheists Agree

  • Topic 10.2 - Tawhīd: The Muslim God according to the Prophet Muhammad and the Ahl al-Bayt (as)

  • Topic 10.3 - God’s Existence: The Argument From Being (Wujūd)

  • Topic 10.4 - God’s Existence: The Kalam Cosmological Argument

  • Topic 10.5 - God’s Existence: The Argument From Design

  • Topic 10.6 - The Problem of Evil, Suffering and Pain

  • Topic 10.7 - Why did God Create Us? The Purpose of our Creation

  • Topic 10.8 - Why Humans Need Religion according to Islam

  • Topic 10.9 - Jahl and Spiritual Ignorance in Islam

  • Topic 10.11 - Do Non-Muslims Go to Hell?

A Reflection on Verses of the Holy Qur’an

Abstract

A brief commentary on Q12:16-18 of the Holy Qur’an and how the story of Yaʿqūb (as) teaches us on how to deal with children.  

INTRODUCTION 

 

Bismillāhir Rahmānir Rahīm, As-salāmu ʿAlaykum wa rahmatullāhi wa barakātuh. Peace be upon you brothers and sisters. 

 

Welcome back to the Muslim Converts channel!  So far our way of approaching the audience has been through introducing various topics. Our aim this time is to do something a little different. We want to bring three verses from the Holy Qur’an and reflect on their possible meaning. There’s an important reason why we are doing this.  

 

One of the unfortunate tendencies we find with some individuals today is that they sometimes find reading the Holy Scripture boring. This is not so much a problem with the text of the Qur’an, but the unfortunate state of the reader.  

 

There are many reasons why this is the case, but here we’ll mention two. One of the primary reasons we get bored is because our interests and minds are largely shaped by the kind of lives we lead. Often enough, our primary concerns are with worldly things which are largely based on the pleasure of worldly gain and the fear of its loss. Our point here is not to say these are not legitimate concerns, but these concerns are a problem when they become the sole object of our focus. 

 

Now, how does this relate to the Qur’an? Well, when the world becomes the sole object of our focus and love, how can the subject material of the Qur’an, that is, the salvation of the human soul, be of any interest to him or her? Boredom is therefore not produced by the Qur’an, it is, instead, produced by the way we lead our lives.  

 

A second reason is that a lot of commentaries on the Qur’an, although excellent works of scholarships, are often irrelevant to the lives Muslims live today. If they are relevant, the way they are written are often not very inviting and sometimes pedantic.  

 

Here we will offer a very brief commentary or interpretation on the possible meaning of three verses in the Holy Qur’an concerning the Prophet Yaʿqūb’s (as) role as a parent. Our intention here is to try to tie the verses to modern experiences. We feel that this approach will further encourage daily reflections on Allah’s Holy Book. 

 

BODY OF TEXT 

 

And they came to their father at night, weeping. They said, "O our father, indeed we went racing each other and left Joseph with our possessions, and a wolf ate him. But you would not believe us, even if we were truthful." And they brought upon his shirt false blood. [Jacob] said, "Rather, your souls have enticed you to something, so patience is most fitting. And Allah is the one sought for help against that which you describe." (Chapter 12, verses 16-18 of the Holy Qur’an) 

 

Prophet Joseph (or Yusuf in Arabic) (as) was Prophet Jacob’s (or Yaʿqūb in Arabic) favorite son. Prophet Yusuf’s (as) brothers were indeed jealous of their father’s affection towards him. The brothers, out of jealousy, had wanted to get rid of Yusuf one way or another. They came up with a plan to take him on a trip. On that trip, they put him down a well and came back to their father with a fake bloody shirt claiming that their younger brother was eaten by a wolf.  

 

Yaʿqūb (as), as a Prophet and wise man, and was very much aware that his sons were lying. He knew that they were guilty, but instead of punishing them, or yelling at them, he decided that patience was better. The question here is why? Didn’t the brothers commit a crime and weren’t they deserving of punishment?  

 

Here comes the wisdom of Yaʿqūb. His guilty sons were already distant from the path of Allah (swt) and His religion. He knew that at this point there was nothing he could do to bring his son back. He knew that by punishing his older sons nothing would change Yusuf’s situation.  

 

The only thing that would happen would be that his sons would be driven away further from him and from Allah (swt). Yaʿqūb therefore swallowed his pain and opted for patience lest his reaction drive his sons further way from the path of Allah. 

 

What is the primary reason why our children lie to us? One of the main reasons why our children lie to us is because they have difficulty trusting us. They believe that by telling us the truth they will get punished or be shamed.  

 

The fact that they have to lie to us may indicate that they are distant and aliened from us, at least to a certain extent. As parents, we are often the source of religion for our children. It is quite common to see that the alienation of children from their parents also results in alienation from religion, and in our case, alienation from Islam.  

 

Sometimes this alienation is not our doing as parents. It is the product of many factors, including the time and place the children were raised which are different than ours. It is also the kinds of friends they have, and/or the type of media the consume. Whatever the reason may be, Yaʿqūb (as) teaches us that our primary role and gut reaction with our children is not to attack or punish them, but to show beautiful patience (sabr).  

 

Through patience, we have the possibility of lessening this alienation and gap between us and our children. As the story of Yaʿqūb shows, in the end, his sons, through years of patience and kindness, found their way back into assuming good moral character, turning away from sin, and living the Godly path.  

 

Notice how much we unraveled from the Qur’an from just a brief meditation over a few verses. Now imagine how much more treasure we can dig out if we reflect even more, and take, let’s say,  a 100 verses. How many life lessons can we derive from them?! 

 

Until Next Time, Thank you for watching. As-salāmu ʿAlaykum wa rahmatullāhi wa barakātuh 

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Q1

Why do some people find the Qur’an boring?

For many reasons. Sometimes it is because their prime focus is their sole love of the world and as a consequence, they lose interest in matters of salvation.

Q2

What are other reasons why the Qur’an seems unattractive to people?

People must focus on making their writings relevant and understandable, especially when it comes to communicating the Qur’an to the masses. Too much abstract discussion and pedantic writing alienates people from Islam’s Holy Book. 

 

Q3

What is the greatest lesson we learn from Yaʿqūb’s (as) relation to his sons, especially after they got rid of their younger brother Yusuf (as)?

Patience instead of immediate punishment 

Muslim
God
Allah
Hereafter
Religion
Sin
Sins
Salvation
Soul
moral character
muslim ummah
holy book
holy scripture of Islam
Qur’an
Islam’s holy book
guidance of mankind
interpretation of the Qur’an
yusuf
yaʿqūb
joseph
Jacob

Al-Mizan by Muhammad Husayn Tabatabai