Na’ima B. Robert Interview

NaimaShe’s a busy woman because she’s a writer, editor and mom of five, mashaaAllah. In her interview with Productive Muslim last year, Na’ima B. Robert discussed how she balances being mother,  Muslimah and a working woman. She truly gives mothers like myself who want to be more than just mothers motivation and inspiration to chase their dreams and do what they love while still being great Muslim mothers and wives. May Allah bless sister Na’ima and Productive Muslim for conducting and sharing this great interview with us!

To read the full interview,  Click here

“Take care of Allah, and Allah will take care of you”

Have you ever read an article or book or even watched a video and felt as though it was something that was written or made just for you? Subhanalaah, when I came across this article, I felt just that. I felt as if it was written for me because I can be a worrier sometimes. As parents, worrying about our children’s akhlaq, education and future is something we all do. But some us we can over worry which leads to stress and stress is definitely not good for anyone! In the article Mending the Crumbled Wall: Allah’s Promise to Protect your Children, Sister Asma of Ruqaya’s Book Shelf, does a great job of reminding all Muslim parents what’s needed of us in order for us not to worry so much about our kids. To read the full article Click here

Here are some more great articles from this same website that I think you’ll definitely enjoy!

  • You’re Beautiful… and Why it Doesn’t Really Matter
  • Know your Intentions: Islamic Parenting Principles Part One (the first of a series of articles)

Making Time For Worship

downloadWith the digital age in full bloom, we are ever so busy  withour smart phones, ipads, tablets, and laptops. When the house is nice and tidy, kids in bed and you finally have time to rest, what do you do?  It’s time to check your Facebook, Google plus, Whatsapp, Twitter and whatever else social media there is! After checking all of that, then what? It’s time to get updated on what’s going on with the world so you head on over to Yahoo! or CNN or the New York times. I’ll be honest, I love browsing and reading interesting, funny or weird stories on the internet but the truth is, while I’m doing that, I’m wasting my precious time. My free time that I should be rushing to worship the one who’s allowed us to have everything we have, who’s so very patient and kind!  I don’t know about you, but time management is one thing I seriously struggle with!

Being mothers means we are with energetic little kids all the time, so we can become exausted! Once the kids are out of your hair all you probably want to do is relax and not do a thing, right? Many mothers I talk to all complain about not being able to manage their time well. But with more efforts and dedication, we sure can manage our time well and divide our 24 hours among sleeping, taking care of the family, entertainment and last but most certainly not least, in fact the most important, worshiping Allah by reading/learning Quran, praying or doing other good deeds which are most pleasing to Ar-Rahman.  May Allah make it easy for us. Here’s a wonderful article I found to be really beneficial because it has great tips and advice that we all, parents or not, can use as Muslims and implement.

Click here

May you benefit, Allahuma amin!

 

Food, Health and Islam

foodIn every part of the world, people face challenges in their lives. Some people face financial instability, hunger and poverty; others face violence, natural disasters and homelessness. And then there are those who face health issues. In every country, the problems are different. In the “developed” countries, the majority of our problems are diabetes, cancer, high blood pressure and depression, just to name a few. Of course, those are not the only problems here; however, I feel like these problems are the ones affecting a lot of people. These health issues all probably have one thing in common: our food!

Yes, our food. Whether it is fruits and vegetables, rice, pasta, milk or meat, the honest truth is our food is just not grown in the same way compared to the way it used to be prepared and grown 100 or even 50 years ago. There are chemicals used for cleaning, and even growing in order to increase production.

My point: the food we put into our bodies has a lot to do with how healthy or unhealthy we are or we can become overall. Many of the diseases I named can be caused by chemicals found in the everyday food we eat. If you are someone who cares about your health and the health of your family, especially that of your children, you must do the research and try to eat food that has no chemicals and that is grown, handled and prepared the right and healthy way if you possibly can.

So what is the healthy way? 

I’m sure many people want to eat healthy but they just don’t know which foods are exactly ‘healthy’ or ‘unhealthy.’ Is organic always healthy? How do we even know what is really organic and what is not? These days, food companies find ways to put the best descriptions for their products just to sell them. Unless you put a lot of effort and energy into researching and learning about food labels, organic vs. non-organic and food made from GMOs etc. it’s really difficult to tell exactly what it is that you are eating and feeding your family. So how do we even know what food is made, processed and packaged without hazardous chemicals?

Well, the short and quick answer is, if you buy your food at grocery stores and fast-food restaurants and don’t grow or prepare it yourself, you can never really know for sure how it was grown and prepared nor can you tell if chemicals were used in the process. However, what you can do is at least read and research on which companies sell good, clean food be it vegetable, fruits or milk. Be a well-informed person when it comes to what you eat and feed your family. There are a lot of companies and individuals who work really hard to put healthy and safe foods for their customers.

How does Islam fit into all this talk about food…

As Muslims, we all know one of the very first things we are taught as soon as we learn how to talk and that is  to say “Bismilaah” at the beginning of every meal; what a blessing this is! In fact, we must say Bismilaah when starting anything that’s good—we say it even for daily activities such as dressing, making wudu, when leaving or entering our homes and riding cars and planes. It’s such a simple and short phrase but has so much power behind it, subhanalaah! It really is also very important that we teach our children this great phrase as soon as they are able to speak. The benefits of saying “Bismilaah” are immeasurable. Thus, when we teach our children to say Bismilaah and get them in the habit of always saying Bismilaah at the start of everything, we are setting them up for success.

Have you really thought about why we say “Bismilaah?” Have you really pondered on the importance of this phrase? The full version of Bismilaah, called the basmalah is translated in the English language as “In the name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful.” When eating, dressing, leaving or entering the home, Bismilaah (in the name of Allah) suffices. By starting all that we do in the name of Allah, we seek his help and blessing. By starting with His beautiful name we are seeking his protection. It was the sunnah of all the prophets, Prophet Muhamad (SAW) included. It is not only preferred and encouraged to say bismilaah at the start of everything; in some cases it is obligatory in Islam to say “bismilaah” for example, when making wudu.

As I mentioned before, food is not as healthy as it used to be. We might be eating fruits and vegetables that have been sprayed with pesticides, or even worse, we might drink milk that came from a cow that was injected with growth hormones in order to increase its milk production. Furthermore, we might consume foods that have additives, food coloring and excessive amounts of sugar or salt. These are all things that are dangerous to our health and yet it is in the food we eat every day! My point is that it really is difficult to stay away from these chemicals even with the best of our efforts. This is where Islam, our beautiful religion, comes into the discussion.

The connection

In Islam we are taught to put forth our best efforts in everything that we do. This includes how we eat and what we eat. As Muslims, we have to follow certain guidelines when it comes to our food. Same thing with when we’re actually eating. We have to eat with the right hand, sit while eating and drinking and do our best to not waste food in the process. It’s important to get these things right before anything else. And most importantly we must always start with saying “Bismilaah” before every meal.

As previously mentioned, once we say Bisimilaah before every meal, we are asking for His protection from all harm including all of those chemicals and especially from the shaytan. By always remembering to say Bismilaah, InshaaAllah, we will be protected from whatever harm that’s in our food. Allah (God) is all knowing and all-seeing. He alone knows what we can’t see that can be harmful to us and our loved ones. Despite our best efforts to buy food that is “organic” or “all-natural,” at the end of the day, we don’t really know if those labels are correct. That’s why it’s important to always ask for His blessing and protection through following our religion, Al-Islam.

To learn more about the benefits and history of the Basmalah, please visit the following sites.

http://www.iqrasense.com/allah/the-blessings-of-saying-bismillah-ir-rahman-ir-rahim.html

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ceC9GyjMprk

 

Saying No: Easier Said Than Done!

noDo you have a hard time saying ‘no’ to your children no matter what their age is? I sure do. I feel like it’s especially hard when they are still really young because they just have a harder time undrstanding why you won’t let them have or do what they want when they want it. No doubt they will put up a big fight, but it’s still important to say NO!

Well alhamdulilah, I found a really good article which highlights the importance of saying no to children and how it can help them in the future as they grow up. Read it here

Islam’s View on Raising and Discipling Children

Mother of three and author of  An Islamic Perspective on Child-Rearing and Discipline, Um Saliha  talked about the confusion there is between religion and culture when it comes to parenting. I think this article was written for a non-Muslim audience, however, I believe it can also serve as a great reminder to us Muslims as well about raising and disciplining our children according to the Quran and sunna and letting go of traditional or cultural practices that have no basis or importance in Islam.  The article is beautifully written and not boring at all! I really enjoyed it and hope you will too.

To read the full article, Click here (This is a reprint on a different website).

To get to the original website where the article was first published, click here

Discipline Do’s and Don’ts

I’ll admit, one of my biggest challenges as a mother is disciplining my children. Even at their young age, sometimes I feel like I come across as too strict and sometimes too lenient. And it’s so very easy to become so angry when parents discipline their children because all we see is the mistake or wrong doing of the child. Grandma Jeddah writes about the five common discipline mistakes parents make when disciplining their children. This article sure was helpful to me. Click here for the full article.