If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else’s, we’d grab ours back. – Anon

A man once asked his father “How will I ever find the right woman?” The father replied “Forget finding the right woman, focus on being the right man.” – Anon

Gaddafi was an idiot. The man was a dictator and he only made himself a colonel. What does that tell you? In America if you put chicken in a bucket you’re a colonel. – Rich Hall, American comedian, 2011

Be grateful for the wound that pushes you towards God. – Yasmin Mogahed

If you can’t start with “Bismillah” when opening Facebook, then know that it means you should not be on Facebook, as your intentions are wrong, and that is what we will be judged by. – Dr Bilal Philips

‘Practice makes perfect…’ No it doesn’t, it makes permanent. If you practice wrong, it doesn’t make perfect. This is why you need a teacher (a shaykh). – Shaykh Hamza Yusuf, from Rihla 2011 in Bursa, Turkey

A man said to Wahb bin Munabah, ‘So and so spoke ill of you’, whereupon Wahb replied, ‘Did Shaytaan not find anyone better than you to deliver this news?’ – from Minhaaj Al–Qaasideen

Everything out there is becoming so specific to the nafs. For example, you don’t just have coffee anymore, where we just go out and have a cup of coffee. Now there are hundreds of types of coffee…Every nafs has to get exactly what it wants. All the nafs are turning into these individualised desire machines, where all the desires become individualised. How can people survive that?…The nafs of people are completely being bombarded…The way we are going is the diversification of the nafs, with more and more ways of fulfilling the individual desires of each nafs…There used to be a homogeneity in culture that enabled people to be together as humans. There used to be a homogeneity that enabled people to feel what Ibn Khaldun called the asabiya, the thing that holds things together, and this is one reason why we are so fragmented as people, we are becoming more and more fragmented, and people are withdrawing into their own artistic experience of life…So you now have the iPod culture, people walking around in a completely different reality to what you are in, literally, because of what they are hearing…The iPod commercial is of a shadow, the person is not even there anymore, it’s just a shadow of a person…What you are doing is you are allowing somebody to put everything into you, your thoughts are being dictated by someone else, because what you are thinking about is what’s being plugged into you, the song or whatever it is. And then there is no silence, people are losing the ability just to be silent, just to sit in silence. – adapted from a speech by Shaykh Hamza Yusuf

People eat junk food that nourishes their junk minds, that results from their junk TV programs, and what is being created is a society of junk people, people who buy junk goods to fill their junk lives. – Shaykh Hamza Yusuf

People have become very superficial, how they view other people. So they judge you not upon your actions. They do not judge you upon what kind of character you are. Instead they judge you upon materialistic means: what car you drive, where you live, how good looking you are…A guy buys a big car and all of a sudden he has friends he never knew about. What does that say about human beings? Are you going to suck up to a person because of a piece of metal? Is this what Muslims have come down to? There was a time when people were judged upon their character. If Abu Bakr (a rich man) had judged Bilal (a slave) upon the colour of his skin and his status in society, then Abu Bakr would have never freed him. But he judged him by his khair (goodness), he judged him by his taqwa (God consciousness). And this is why when Abu Bakr saw Bilal being persecuted he went to Bilal’s owner Omaya, and he said “Oh Omaya, sell me Bilal”, and Omaya said “I will sell him to you because you corrupted him” (i.e. you influenced him to become a Muslim). And Abu Bakr asked how much, and Omaya said 10 gold coins. So Abu Bakr went home and came back with 10 gold coins and he gave them to Omaya, and Omaya began to laugh, and Abu Bakr said “Oh Omaya what is making you laugh?” and he said “I am laughing because if you had haggled with me, I would have sold Bilal to you for 1 gold coin”, and Abu Bakr replied “I swear by Allah, if you had haggled with me I would have paid 100 gold coins for Bilal”…Today we judge people by the clothes they wear. Prada shoes, Cartier watches. Is this what Muslims have come down to? If you want to judge people by their looks or by their clothes, then let me tell you that when the Prophet (SAW) left this dunya he had 11 patches on his clothes. When Abu Bakr left this dunya he had 14 patches on his clothes. – adapted from a speech by Shaykh Zahir Mahmood

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