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Brief Reminders

‘As Long as it Makes You Happy…’

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Last Updated on Thursday, 28 January 2021 15:20

“You can’t have your cake and eat it.”

The above is a popular expression in the English language, and it means that a person cannot have two things that are contradictory at the same time. Rather, he will have to choose between them, as the existence of one automatically negates the other.

In the case of the cake, eating it would destroy it, negating the possibility of keeping it, while the effort to keep it intact would prevent one from eating it. Hence, one cannot have it both ways, but will have to choose and decide between the two.

There are many examples, in our day-to-day lives, to which this expression aptly applies. However, the greatest clash between two contradictory factors, which we see in our lives, is the clash between pleasing the impermissible cravings of our nafs (carnal self) and pleasing our Creator – Allah Ta‘ala.

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An Opportunity to Purchase Paradise

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Last Updated on Wednesday, 13 January 2021 08:36

Imagine a person who prepares a pot of food and sends it to his affluent neighbours next door, as a gesture of Islamic character and neighbourly love. Next, imagine a person who prepares a pot of food, and then personally travels to a rural township many kilometres away to feed a household that is dying of starvation.

Outwardly, both people carried out the same action of sending a pot of food to a household. However, while both actions are meritorious and virtuous, the action of saving the poor family from starvation will be more rewarding.

The reason for the latter being more rewarding is that the need fulfilled was greater (due to the starvation) and the personal effort and sacrifice involved in carrying out the deed was more (through personally traveling many kilometres to deliver the meal).

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Help for the Helpless

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Last Updated on Thursday, 07 January 2021 13:50

Imagine a person lying paralyzed in a bed, utterly helpless and powerless. However, he has the ability to move just one finger. Through moving his finger, he is able to press a ‘S.O.S button’ that contacts his beloved family, alerting them that he requires some assistance.

This person, as paralyzed and powerless as he may be, will enjoy a feeling of safety and security, as he knows that the help of those who love him and care for him can be summoned at the mere press of a button.

In the same way, every human being is ultimately helpless. Despite his strength, wealth, intelligence and everything else, there will come a day when nothing will avail him and he will find himself powerless and paralyzed. Indeed, that day has come for many of us, as we find our loved ones sick, labouring for breath and fighting for their lives, with us powerless and paralyzed to intervene.  

However, if we are powerless, then we have our ‘S.O.S button’ with which we can contact the One who is All-Powerful. This ‘button’ is the du‘aa that was recited by Nabi Yunus (‘alaihis salaam) when he was in the belly of the whale:

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The Opportunity of a Lifetime

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Last Updated on Wednesday, 09 December 2020 16:23

It is commonly said that we live in a rat race. With people rushing off to work in the early hours of the morning, only returning in the night, and repeating the tiresome process day-after-day, in an effort to make ends meet, there is certainly some truth to the observation.

Now, imagine that you have no qualification or work experience at all. Yet, you are given a unique job opportunity. If you work for just one hour a day, you will be remunerated for a full day’s work. Furthermore, your salary will be so high that it will even exceed that of the CEOs of major companies and enterprises!

There is just one catch – you have to do exactly what the employer says, when he says it, and as he says it, without any questioning. However, you have full confidence that the employer is not only a reasonable person – he is most kind and will thus never make unfair demands from you.

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Are You an Addict?

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Last Updated on Saturday, 28 November 2020 13:24

Have you ever taken note of a drug addict’s behaviour and the signs of his addiction? Bloodshot eyes... Poor sleep pattern and appetite... Irritability and fidgetiness... Depression and weight loss... Being ‘completely zoned out’... Items or cash ‘disappearing’ (stolen) in their vicinity... These are just some of the typical signs.

Now, think of a gamer hooked onto their PC, Xbox or PlayStation. Do they not appear to be ‘zoned out’ and oblivious of their surroundings, spending hours and hours immersed in their fantasy world, leading them to become sleep deprived? Do their eyes not become bloodshot (from staring at the screen for extended periods)? Do they not become irritable and susceptible to mood swings? In many cases, does money not ‘disappear’ (where children ‘borrow’ their parents’ credit cards for in-game purchases)?

It’s quite uncanny really, just how similar the signs are, and just as a drug addiction can consume and kill a person, a gaming addiction can do the same – as seen in the incident below:

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