Tag Archives: qabool hai

Would you like it Blessed or Wretched?

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Marriage is a colorful artwork gifted to you by Allah, specially designed for you to find repose in.  It is an institution where real love is nurtured for the family to bask in its warmth and light.  It is the building where the foundation of future is laid in the present.  It is falling in love with the same person over and over again each day.  Yes, over and over again with that beautiful creation of Allah with whom you sign the contract under His Eyes while you say, “Qabool Hai” (“I do”).  And, this bond is meant to give you sukoon (tranquility) which in itself is one of the greatest blessings of Allah Subhanahu wa Ta’ala.

Well, isn’t it ironic then to see that most of the marriages that take place these days turn out with negative results!  All the dreams get smashed in one go and turn into a nightmare.  The number of couples who can say that they are living in sukoon (tranquility) has reduced drastically.  Every second person you bump into these days seems to talk about their marriage related woes.  The reason is often plain and simple: being away from the Qur’an and Sunnah thereby incurring Allah’s wrath in all the affairs including those of marriage.  How can a journey that starts with disobeying Allah and displeasing Him be smooth and enjoyable?

If you are among those who are already married but did so while having crossed the limits set by Allah then know that the doors of repentance are still open and Allah will make easy your affairs if you turn to Him in sincerity.  And, if you are among those who are either looking for a spouse or counting the days left to your wedding, and you want to see unlimited blessings in your wedding, then read on carefully.

1. Check your intentions

Is it for the sake of Allah that you are taking this decision i.e., to safeguard yourself from Haram while wanting your wishes to be fulfilled in a Halal manner?

2. Plan it simple

If you’ve already ticked the check box about your intention then receive the glad tidings of Allah’s promise and know that Allah never breaks His promise!  Now, plan your marriage and get your parents and the parents of your potential spouse on board for this noble cause of simple Nikah.  Be sure that it is going to be in accordance with the Sunnah of the Prophet (may Allah exalt his mention).

3. Be strict and firm

When it comes to the limits of Allah, be strict and firm.  Don’t compromise with regards to the issue of inter mixing of opposite genders.  Ensure that there will not be extravagance.  You may already know that the spendthrifts are the brothers of Shaytan.  Say a big “No” to music.  Brothers, shaving beard isn’t a good idea either.  Sisters, be cautious of long hours of make up lest you should miss your Salah and you needn’t even boast about your Mahr.

4. Rely on Allah alone

If you are of those who have always lowered your gaze, given charity, offered voluntary prayers, fasted much then Insha Allah the time is near when you will peacefully lock your eyes with your spouse without any hindrance, get the provisions ceaselessly, find the absolute tranquility and enjoy the lovely relationship with her/him; but no matter what, you must always remember to rely on Allah alone without associating others for asking help in any of your affair.  You must trust His Perfect Planning and His Perfect Timing.  So, make sure that you begin the preparation for a journey filled with abundant blessings, a journey where the desired destination is always Jannatul Firdaus, and the eyes remain transfixed on the prize.

Let the journey begin! Bismillah.

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Caught between the Mother and the Wife

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By Zaki Imtiaz

 The best thing about getting married is partnership, isn’t it? Ask those who are happily married. A marriage may survive without money, but can’t survive without the mutual partnership. Newly married couples enjoy their lives in the most halal way. Allah has described them as Libas (garments) of each other, covering each others physically, covering each others faults and helping each other to cope up with the external damaging elements. SubhanAllah, what great wisdom there is in this analogy! [1]

 Whilst they enjoy themselves, they might not realize the change that this union has brought not just in their lives, but also in the lives of their parents and siblings. If we see it from the groom’s perspective, before marriage, he just had to take care of his family and be dutiful to his parents. After marriage, he has to take up the responsibility of his wife also, the woman who has left her comfortable home and loving parents far away, and has come to live with him, despite all of his negative and bad habits.

Every house has a pre-defined set of norms, and it takes time for a new person to settle in and get accustomed with everyone. In such situations, there may arise conflicts between the wife and the husband’s family over simple issues. They will obviously have a difference of opinion on how to handle everyday big and small affairs: be it cooking, handling the home chores, arranging and scheduling daily tasks, dealing with the the servants etc. The notoriously famous battles are the ones which take place between the mother-in-law and the daughter-in-law. If timely firefighting is not carried out, minor tussles can erupt into major fights.

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 Stuck between a rock and a hard place is the poor man, the son and the husband, trying to restore calm in the house, and keep the two most important women in his life happy. The role of this poor man is indeed very crucial. He has to balance the rights of his wife and his mother. He has to ensure that no injustice takes place. He has to walk the tightrope. He has to be the firefighter, the juggler and the peace maker. My whole-hearted sympathies are with this man! For the benefit of this man, here are some tips and tricks that I have learned through different experiences in my own life and in the lives of others:

  •  Never say no to your parents, especially if it doesn’t harm your personal life. Allah says:

وَوَصَّيْنَا الْإِنسَانَ بِوَالِدَيْهِ حُسْنًا ۖ

“And We have enjoined on man to be good and dutiful to his parents”. [Surah al-‘Ankaboot: 8]

  •  In case of conflict between wife and parents, listen to both sides carefully and analyze the situation. Don’t jump to conclusions. Allah says:

إِنَّمَا الْمُؤْمِنُونَ إِخْوَةٌ فَأَصْلِحُوا بَيْنَ أَخَوَيْكُمْ

“The believers are nothing else than brothers (in Islamic religion). So make reconciliation between your brothers” [Surah al-Hujurat:10]

  •  Talk to each party separately and try to clear the misunderstandings by explaining the matter, without making it seem that you are taking sides. Trust me, this works. They want someone to listen, sympathize and talk rationally.
  •  Love your wife much and unconditionally. Avoid scolding her and gently explain the importance of being good to the your family and its benefits. The Prophet (sallalahu ‘alaihi wasallam) said:

 “The best of you is the one who is best to his wife, and I am the best of you to my wives.” [Ibn Majah]

  •  Love you parents unconditionally and lower your wings of humility over them, no matter what. They are old now; bear with their quirks; their age may have left them with no other choice apart from behaving the way they want to behave. They still love and care for you. Allah says:

وَاخْفِضْ لَهُمَا جَنَاحَ الذُّلِّ مِنَ الرَّحْمَةِ وَقُل رَّبِّ ارْحَمْهُمَا كَمَا رَبَّيَانِي صَغِيرًا

“And lower unto them the wing of submission and humility through mercy, and say: “My Lord! Bestow on them Your Mercy as they did bring me up when I was small.” [Surah al-Israa: 24]

  • Make everyone understand that things shouldn’t be based on the way they are carried out, rather they should be based on results. Make them sit together and decide the outputs of things which are causing friction. As long as everyone agrees upon the output, they do not have to fight on how things get done. Focus on the destination, rather than the route taken. [This principle taken from the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey works wonders.]
  •  Be emotionally strong; be the man. Forgive them and hold no grudges.

وَإِن تَعْفُوا وَتَصْفَحُوا وَتَغْفِرُوا فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ غَفُورٌ رَّحِيمٌ

“But if you pardon (them) and overlook, and forgive (their faults), then verily, Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” [Surah at-Taghabun :14]

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May Allah make our homes among the gardens of Paradise.  May He make us the coolness of our parents’ eyes, and make our wives and children the coolness of our eyes.

[1] See Tafsir Ibn e Kathir 2:187 for details

So you think Islamic weddings are boring?!

Amazing ideas brought to you by the Youth Club Street Dawah Team

There is an outdated cliche with regards to practicing God fearing brothers and sisters that because they are so ‘boring’, then obviously their weddings will be drab too!

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People would complain:

Where is the pumping loud Bhangra music?!

Bhangra and Dhol apparently being the ultimate expression of human bliss!

Where are the funky dance moves?!

Where is the intermingling?!

I mean, don’t we dress to impress?  Didn’t we buy the latest designer Versace suit or the latest Sobia Nazir lehanga to get noticed by the opposing gender?!

Marriage between two people is indeed an occasion of great celebration.  Islam, in its this beauty and perfection, guides us how to express this happiness within limits- like everything else in life!

If the feeling of joy and ecstasy is not checked, things can quickly get out of control.  It can manifest itself in outrageous parties where morality is thrown out of the window and extravagance is practiced on an unbelievingly extravagant scale!

To get things straight, there is no concept of dance and music (in the name of Mehndi, Mayun etc.) before the sacred rites of matrimony.  There’s no baraat in Islam, just an elegant Nikah (at the masjid, if you prefer) attended by both men and women in separate quarters.  The bride’s ‘rukhsati‘ can take place from there and there is no baraat reception afterwards.  Ah! The beautiful simplicity and refreshing convenience of Islam.  It is only the people who have shackled themselves to the yokes of tradition and culture who find this strange and awkward.

Then comes the Walima function on which everyone can enjoy the Halal fun.  Yes, Halal fun.  No sir, that is not an oxymoron.  These two go together quite well.  We need to provide halal alternatives to the usual haram stuff that goes on at weddings.

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Here we’ve compiled some ideas that we’ve witnessed at different Walimas in Pakistan and UK, and being the innovative and creative souls that we are, we’ve added our own ideas too (Hopefully, this should help you to beat the Indian/Hindu influence on Muslim weddings):

1- You can invite  brothers to display their vocal skills by reciting the Quran; Have a ‘Quran recital night’ .

2- Somebody with an amazing voice can perform Islamic nasheeds.  You could even make the venue all colourful and comfortable, use big floor cushions, dim the lights, create an awesome ambience!

3-Instead of blaring out trashy music sung by idol-worshipping people with shallow lyrics, put on a beautiful soothing Arabic nasheed or even an English one.  Perhaps even have a designated DJ who could mix  and match!  There are actually a plethora of nasheeds available for us to choose from.  Or don’t play anything at all; just let the people actually talk to each other!

4- Have a cool dress code for the guests.

5- Share light hearted, interesting personal anecdotes of Dawah.  This creates a  jovial atmosphere.

6- And why does the food have to be almost the same at every Pakistani wedding?  Why not explore the vast Muslim world cuisine and what they have to offer?  Perhaps humous and falafel or a signature Malaysian dish!  The guests will surely remember your wedding by your bold attempt at trying something different.

7- A brother actually held a quiz at his walima. This created great laughter and was very pleasant altogether.

These are just a few ideas.  I’m sure if you think outside the box, then you can come up with your own brainwaves.

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A wedding is not an occasion to show off and display your arrogance through your clothing or your vehicles.  It is not an occasion to gloat over your power or wealth.  Instead of trying our utmost to impress people or to live up to their expectations; we should be concerned about what our Lord is thinking about our conduct!

The style of weddings needs to change.  If you really want the marriage to be supremely successful, then keep it halal!  Why take away the blessings by indulging in doubtful or explicitly haram activities?   Would you expect smooth sailing on a journey that begins with displeasing the Lord?

There must be separate halls arranged for ladies and gentlemen; and female waitresses for the women.  Oh, and please keep the video people off the premises.  What kind of a Muslim bride sits on a pedestal only half dressed, decked up in all her finery with photographers falling over themselves to capture her from every angle?  And even telling her how to pose and behave like a shameless model?  And what kind of a wimpy Muslim groom is ready to tolerate this!?

This is a very small attempt at changing the traditional attitudes of how weddings should be conducted in the subcontinent. I hope other readers will pick up on this and expand on it.

I pray that the youth that are reading this show the mettle to go against the grain of traditions and be bold and trendy enough to try something unique, something approved by our Creator.

Do you accept the challenge of becoming pioneers of halal weddings?!
#QaboolHai?! 

 Let us know your ideas in the Comments section below.

Of Big Weddings And Small People

“There are two types of gatherings: one that is surrounded by angels and one that is not.”

– From Half:Past:Midnight- What I’ve learnt so far, Saadia Humayun

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And that about sums it up when we come to weddings as we know them.  Ladies – near or far, close to you or not so much, related or a mere friend – all clamour to get you to shed that off, or put this on.  Then there are those poor, innocent, lost gents that keep sauntering between the tables, stopping here and there to chat with folks, making up for lost conversations, and instructing the waiter— wait a second, didn’t you say this was going to be a segregated wedding?

“Always the same,” said Mr. Weasley, smiling. “We can’t resist showing off when we get together…”

– From Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, J.K.Rowling

 Showing off.  The phrase doesn’t see as much use today as when we were kids, but it hasn’t been more in evidence than today.  People always remark how it is no use for you to be donning jewellery or taking pains with a certain dress if, well, ‘it is not seen and appreciated’.  In fact, one person even forced their parents that there be no purdah or partition so to speak, at their wedding.  Who shall we dress up for then, Mom!

 And really, why the need for tonnes of make-up?  So far, experience dictates that even if you go to the best of salons, you still end up just fiercely hoping it turns out well, and that little children don’t scurry for cover upon sight.  But then, who possesses the strong faculties to endure all taunts thrown their way by eminent guests?

وَالَّذِيْنَ اِذَآ اَنْفَقُوْا لَمْ يُسْرِفُوْا وَلَمْ يَـقْتُرُوْا وَكَانَ بَيْنَ ذٰلِكَ قَوَامًا

And [they are] those who, when they spend, do so not excessively or sparingly but are ever, between that, [justly] moderate. (Surah Al-Furqan: 67)

It all comes down to people then, doesn’t it?  To us all.  To you and me.  To how small our goals and how shallow our thinking is, yet how big our weddings are!  Eating in moderation and strictly keeping oneself from waste- be it food or money, lowering the gaze and hiding the ornaments, and then saying only the good stuff, are all that lack from our ceremonies today.  I wonder if the angels surround such gatherings..

يٰبَنِيْٓ اٰدَمَ خُذُوْا زِيْنَتَكُمْ عِنْدَ كُلِّ مَسْجِدٍ وَّكُلُوْا وَاشْرَبُوْا وَلَا تُسْرِفُوْا  ۚ اِنَّهٗ لَا يُحِبُّ الْمُسْرِفِيْنَ

O children of Adam, take your adornment at every masjid, and eat and drink, but be not excessive. Indeed, He likes not those who commit excess. (Surah Al-A’raaf: 31)

Looking for A Spouse: Great Expectations

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By Fareed Ahmed

Marriage-related statuses, comments and articles usually get the maximum number of likes on social networking sites.  It seems that everyone has something to say.  People often vent their frustrations and share their experience and observations about this universal topic.

Indeed, marriage is a very vast and crucial subject; books have been written on it yet some aspects generally remain untouched.  The topic of marriage can be seen from both an element of seriousness and an element of fun.  It totally depends on the individual’s maturity and attitude towards life.  Anyways, today the aspect that I want to touch upon is the “Utopia Syndrome” with regards to marrying.

“I want to marry a righteous spouse…”, this is an oft-repeated, even cliched phrase among the practicing Muslim youth.  We keep on saying and hearing this in our circle of religious friends, but then we have our “Great Expectations”.  Religiously inclined men looking to marry are well-aware of the famous Hadith :

“A woman is married for four reasons: her wealth, her nobility, her beauty and her piety.  Choose the pious one, and may you be successful.” (Bukhari)

However, no matter how long and bushy a brother’s beard is or how high he wears his pants, very few of them actually compromise on beauty and age of the girl, though they might eventually compromise on wealth and nobility, and even piety.  Everyone wants to marry a Cinderella or someone who looks like a beauty queen from Hollywood.  The Hadith is forgotten, and one after the other, rejections are made under the guise of Kufw (compatibility) or negative Istikhara, while the real reason for rejection remains hidden.

Know, my brothers, that beauty fades away with time; it is character that continues to shines through.

The mentality of the majority of the sisters is no different.  They might hold graduation in Fiqh, maintain proper hijab, and claim (along with their parents): “We are looking for a righteous man.”; yet when someone from a lower-class family approaches them, righteousness takes a backseat and many more things get added up in their list.  They too know, but choose to ignore the famous Hadith:

“If a man, whose character and Deen satisfies you, asks for your daughter in marriage, you should marry them; otherwise, there’ll be corruption in the land.” (Tirmidhi)

Know, my sisters, that your spouse can’t reach your father’s level, and provide you with all the luxuries of your father’s home, at this early stage in his career.  You will surely get whatever provision Allah has destined for you.

Prophet Musa (alaihis salam) would have never have gotten married to the daughter of the pious man (Prophet Shuaib, according to traditions) who sheltered him in Madyan, if his father in-law had based his decision on material possessions.  At that time, Musa had no money or luxuries, nor had he been given Prophethood.  He was merely a modest and righteous man.  That is all he had to his credit.

I do honour the concept of Kufw (compatibility) in Islamic Fiqh, but there has to be a touch of realism and prioritization in our standards.  When we complain of delayed marriages and marriage-related sufferings, we must understand that many times the fault lie within us; our obnoxious attitude and high standards are to blame.  The truth is that materialism is rooted deeply in our minds and hearts.  Despite knowing the ahadith, the stories of the companions and righteous people, we just can’t seem to fix our minds and hearts.

The author can be contacted at fareedahmad_1@hotmail.com

Do you agree with the author’s point of view?  Have you ever noticed or experienced these Great Expectations? Let us know in the Comments below!

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You’re dying to marry, but are you ready to marry?

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By Zaki Imtiaz

Do you know what is the most discussed matter among the Muslim youth these days?  At least, among those whom I know.  Yeah, you guessed it right: Marriage.  You say the word and you see these Colgate smiles on their faces.  Everybody wants to get married, don’t they?

Indeed, Nikah is an amazing blessing from Allah Subhanahu wa Ta’ala; it is a Halal way out for fulfilling our emotional and physical needs.  Muslims are advised in the Quran to lower their gaze, guard their chastity, and keep themselves away from all sorts of indecent acts.  The culture of Islam disciplines the society by encouraging marriage and by disapproving all relationships outside wedlock.

I have observed over the past couple of years that our educated youth are zealously reverting to these Islamic principles and values.  I’ve been teaching at a university, and whenever I interact with the youth, I find that they are motivated and ready to get married, wanting to keep themselves safe from the indecent and highly sexualized society around them.

I often advise them to take bold steps and talk to their parents about this issue and get married.  It’s better to have daal roti (a simple meal) prepared by your lovely wife in a single room apartment, which is filled with Iman (faith), instead of luxuries and unlawful relationships with nothing to claim in the hereafter.  However, these youngsters often do not have the guts to talk to their parents seriously, nor are they ready to compromise on their luxurious living and beauty standards.  The brothers continue to dream of a Hijabi Miss Universe, and the sisters continue to wait for their Prince Charming.

Most of the time, such brothers and sisters think that marriage is the solution to all their problems: their getting up late, their time mismanagement, loss of focus due to the fitnah (trials) posed by the society, untamed temper, bad relationship with parents and what not.

Let me bust this myth.  Marriage is not the solution to all your problems!  Write it down and paste it on your wall.  Marriage is not the solution, it can only facilitate some things for you.

Consider these scenarios:

“Oh Mom! Give me a break.  Don’t scold me all the time.  I’ll learn this stuff when I go to my next house.  Let me enjoy for now.” 

Remember what Allah says:

وَاخْفِضْ لَهُمَا جَنَاحَ الذُّلِّ مِنَ الرَّحْمَةِ

“And lower unto them the wing of submission and humility through mercy” (Surah al-Israa: 24)

“Dude, I just can’t seem to wake up for Fajr these days.  When my wife will come, she’ll wake me up inshaAllah!”

Fix YOURSELF because Allah says:

فَإِذَا جَاءَتِ الصَّاخَّةُ يَوْمَ يَفِرُّ الْمَرْءُ مِنْ أَخِيهِ وَأُمِّهِ وَأَبِيهِ وَصَاحِبَتِهِ وَبَنِيهِ

“Then, when there comes the second blowing of the Trumpet, that Day shall a man flee from his brother,  and from his mother and his father,  and from his wife and his children.” (Surah ‘Abasa: 33-36)

“Dad! I gotta dine out with friends.  Please give me some more money.”

If you can’t bear your own expenses, how will you bear those of your wife, who will be solely your responsibilty?

The affairs of marriage are not joke and play.  Nor is marriage a solution to all your discipline and personality issues.  If you are not willing to change and sacrifice, then no one can help you.

Here are some pointers to these youngsters who are over-zealous to get married soon, and are obsessed with this matter:

 1- First and foremost, you need to get your faith and deeds corrected.  If you yourself don’t pray, observe proper Islamic dress code, speak truth and be just, you should then least expect to have a pious spouse.

2- Learn how to respect your parents. If you are unable to respect them before marriage, you won’t be respecting them after it as well. Remember, your spouse and children will learn from you.

3- Talk to your parents about your intention for Nikah. Don’t just tell them but show them through your actions by acting wise and not childish all the time, by dealing with them respectfully and submitting to their their lawful demands.  Show them that you’re ready to say #QaboolHai (“I do”).

4- Get yourself financially stable.  At least, you should be able to support a couple of dresses for your wife for one season, her daily requirements, a separate room and three meals/day to stay healthy.

5- Begin with the end in mind.  Write down what kind of tarbiyyah (upbringing)you want your kids to be given.  If your potential spouse himself/herself fails to live up with these values, then there is no compatibility whatsoever.

6- Get yourself disciplined.  You need to throw your dirty clothes in the basket yourself, tidy your room, straighten your bed and be responsible for your own actions.

7- Last but definitely not the least, pray to Allah Subhanahu wa Ta’ala to help you out.  Make dua especially in the last part of the night, after the obligatory prayers and beg Allah of His forgiveness and Mercy.  For all affairs are in the Allah’s Control, and he who is given Allah’s Mercy is indeed successful.

May Allah make our spouses and children the coolness of our eyes! Ameen.

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The writer is a software engineer and can be contacted at zakiimtiaz1@gmail.com

Top 7 things I like about Pakistani Weddings

By Umm Ibrahim

Here are the top 7 reasons that make me smile at the start of the wedding season.  These are the things that make attending a wedding worthwhile.  Yes, they actually make all the preparation and dressing up in chiffon and georgettes (in chilly December nights) and the travelling worth it.

1- Nikah in the Masjid

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There is something very serene about attending a Nikah in a Masjid. It makes you reflect on the sacredness of the bond and the beauty of the relationship.  Alhamdolillah, more and more young people are opting to tie the knot in the Masjid.

2- The awesome Khutbah

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‘Awesome’ is the last word that I’d use for most of the Nikah khutbahs that I’ve heard.  But, then there is that rare Nikah khutbah which is enlightening and Iman-boosting at the same time.  Instead of some rehearsed mumbo-jumbo, it is real life advice that you can comprehend and apply.  It is a power-packed sermon that reminds you of your duties to Allah and to your fellow human beings.  You come back from such a wedding feeling that, for a change, your soul has had its wedding feast too, and not just your body.

3- The cute kids in ghararas, lehangas and three-piece suits

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Don’t you just love them?  They are cuteness personified; and the way they pop out from underneath the tables is just adorable.  Any wedding is incomplete without the toddlers running around dressed up as little men and women.  Their spontaneity and innocence is actually refreshing in a surrounding where most of the adults appear to be fake: painted in make-up, plastering false smiles and visibly uncomfortable in ridiculous hair-dos and stiletto heels.

4- Bumping into a long-lost friend or acquaintance

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It’s a small world, they say.  And a wedding is a perfect place to prove this true.  You are bound to run into that classmate you haven’t been in contact with since Grade 4.  Or that Aunty who was your neighbor 10 years ago.  If you’ve been invited from the bride’s side, this person will most probably be invited from the groom’s.  In most cases, these run-ins are very pleasant and nostalgic.  Old friendships get rekindled.  You catch up on everything, exchange phone numbers and marvel over the wonderful chance encounter.

5- The Rukhsati

We, Pakistanis, are very emotional beings.  Our family bonds are very strong.  Yet, paradoxically, we don’t openly express our love and affection for our families, except at the hour of rukhsati!  There is something so genuinely sentimental about a rukhsati that it can melt the heart of anyone present.  The beauty of the father-daughter, brother-sister, sister-sister and mother-daughter bonds are all beautifully portrayed in these few minutes.  Yes, seeing the rukhsati is worth the 5-hour wait!  (By the way, holding a Mushaf over the bride’s head at the time of Rukhsati is not from the Sunnah, nor is it reported to have any benefits.  So, brothers of brides, you can safely ditch this practice.)

 6- The Mehndi

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No, I don’t mean the Mehndi functions.  I mean the Henna.  What a wonderful thing it is!  The colour, the smell, the designs!  I love to apply it on others’ hands (though my attempts often end up in a mess and fervent apologies on my part) and I absolutely love to get it applied on my hands.  After Eid, a wedding is the second-best excuse to apply Mehndi.  It also makes the memory of the event last for a good ten days.

7- The Food

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Last but not the least, the delicious food. Isn’t this the reason why most people attend weddings in the first place? What can beat gajar ka halwa and kashmiri chai in the cold December nights?  Tantalizing, eh?

So, all hail the wedding season. Viva la wedding season!

Read “Top 7 things I dislike about Pakistani weddings” here: https://youthclubblog.wordpress.com/2013/12/05/top-7-things-i-dislike-about-pakistani-weddings/

Top 7 things I dislike about Pakistani Weddings

By Umm Ibrahim

The wedding season has begun in full swing.  All kinds of invitation cards are pouring in: the glamorous, the simple and elegant, the flashy, and the paindu (for lack of a better word).  As I mark my calendar for all the events to be attended this winter, I sigh at the thought of the top 7 things I dislike about Pakistani weddings.  Here they are, in no particular order:

1- The Timings:

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So, you arrive one hour late, (which you believe is late enough) only to be greeted by the hotel staff setting up the stage decorations.  You sit in the empty hall, twiddling your thumbs, playing Candy Crush, and counting the tables and chairs for an hour before the hosts come bustling in.  Only politeness and decorum prevents you from saying to them what you are feeling at the moment.

2- The Pesky Photographers:

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Just because you attend someone’s wedding does not mean that you have given your consent to be filmed and photographed from all angles.  I’m not particularly camera-shy, but the photographer who pops up out of nowhere and flashes blinding light in my face, while I comfortably sit there eating biryani, better run for his life.  Whatever happened to respecting someones’ privacy?  I thought these people were supposed to be professional photographers!  Professional ethics, anyone?

3- The Food Stampede:

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There is always enough food at a wedding.  In fact, there is enough left to have the hosts get it packed, freeze it and survive on it for a week!  Why the stampede then?  All pretenses of decency and sophistication are discarded as soon as dinner is announced, and the Homo sapiens push, shove and do whatever their primal instincts direct them to do.

4- The Music:

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After being bored for an hour, you finally strike up an interesting conversation with someone on your table.  But, you have to abandon all such attempts when the music starts blaring at ear-splitting volume.  Look, everyone does not love music.  I, for one, hate music.  It’s not good for my heart, says my spiritual cardiologist.  Plus, everyone does not share your taste in music.  To force people to listen to your favorite songs over and over again for three hours is very close to the kind of torture they employ at Guantanamo Bay.  As soon as the music switches on, I feel the need need to go to the restroom.  And stay there in peace and quiet till it’s time to leave.

5- The Nosy Aunties:

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These are the ones who inspect you from head-to-toe and make detailed inquiries about every piece of clothing and jewellery you are wearing (unhindered by the fact that they are complete strangers to you).  If you’re the bride, they want to know every single detail about which piece of jewellery came from your parents and which from your in-laws, and what every thing cost.

6-The Future Mother-in-Laws:

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These are the rishta-wali (match-making) type aunties.  The only gripe I have against them is that they make their intent all too obvious.  If only they could be a bit more discreet and tactful, they wouldn’t be in this list!  A typical conversation could go like:

How are you, Beta?
I’m fine Alhamdolillah
Nice dress.  And your ring is so beautiful. Is it your engagement ring?
Thankyou, Aunty.  No, it’s not my engagement ring.
Are you engaged?
No.
How old are you?
25.
Ohhoo okay Beta. Bye.

And she goes out looking for her next potential daughter-in-law.  Too bad your son is 24, Aunty!

7- The Doodh-Pilai:

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To me, this is simply an innovative and sophisticated way of beggary-cum-extortion.  The poor groom just can’t squirm out of it.  If he says that he doesn’t like milk, the girls are equipped with Ovaltine or Horlicks to suit his taste buds.  If I were the bride, I’d just tell them to buzz off and stop bugging my husband.  The only thing I dislike more that doodh-pilai would be joota-chupai and rasta-rukai etc.  There has to be some sense to the customs and traditions you follow.

So, what is it that you dislike about our weddings?  Let me know in the comments below.

And stay tuned for the top 7 things I like about Pakistani weddings.  Yes, there’s a lot to like about our weddings too!  Meanwhile, happy wedding season!

#QaboolHai – Theme for the Marriage Season!

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Qabool Hai??
Qabool Hai!!

Winter is here, and so is the marriage season.  Nikah contracts are in the air!

For us at YouthClub, 2013 has been an extraordinarily beautiful year, with many of the YC brothers and sisters getting married! It sure is a promising prospect for the future of the Ummah when Dawah carriers, with noble ambitions and goals, say their “Qabool Hai” (“I do”) and settle down!

On the one hand, we have the pristine institute of marriage.  On the other hand, we have the non-stop onslaught of messages from advertisements, movies and social media, telling us to fall head over heels in love and have all the fun before marriage.  Even sex before marriage is now seeping into our society.

The propagandists of this agenda portray marriage as a drab ‘stuck-with-one-person-for-the-rest-of-your-life’ situation.  They fail to realize that every time they promote this way of thinking, they are slowly chipping away at the building block of any human civilization: the family!

Caught between a rock and a hard place are those single Muslims who are struggling to preserve their modesty and get married, in the face of unhealthy social and cultural practices.  How do you deal with a delayed marriage and ensuing social pressures?  What is the right way to find Mr. Right or Ms. Right?  How do you simplify things and tie the knot without creating a Bollywood extravaganza?

And after you get married, and the honeymoon ends and life starts, how do you keep the spark alive?  What are the tips and tricks to make your marriage a success?

This December, the Youth Clubbers, are utilizing their God-given talents to explore these questions, to find solutions, and to counter the unhealthy media onslaught by promoting the beautiful institution of marriage (all this while we also attend the Walimas and eat the biryanis)!

Let’s do this together! Let’s promote marriage for the beautiful Sunnah and amazing journey that it is.  Let’s curb this filthy and nonsensical trend of having boyfriends and girlfriends.  Be a part of our latest campaign.  Be the reason to encourage ‘halal love’.  Be a means to influence two amazing people getting together in Islamic matrimony and producing amazing Muslims for the next generation.

 Use the hashtag #QaboolHai in your articles, blogs, status updates, tweets and conversations at your campuses!  Enjoy the marriage season!

“Our Lord! Bestow on us from our spouses and children the coolness of our eyes, and make us leaders of the righteous.” (Surah al-Furqan: 74)

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