Welcome to #hishtags. Unless otherwise indicated, the following compilation comprises the reflections and ruminations, the musings and meditations of El-Hajj Hisham Mahmoud.
|Procrastinate tomorrow.||Disappointment stalks expectation.|
|Learning to yearn begins with yearning to learn.||There’s only one of you, and God owns the patent!|
|What you give shall ‘ever live, what you devour lasts but an hour.||Religion is the process by which existence comes into being.|
|Beauty is the splendour of truth, ugliness is the branding of falsehood.
—Dr. Umar Faruq Abd-Allah
|Be the glitch you wish to see in the matrix.
|الْفِكْرُ مَنْبَتُ الشُّكْرِ وَالذِّكْرُ مَنْبَعُ السُّكْرِ
Reflection is the reed of gratitude, remembrance is the spring of intoxication.
|الشُّكْرُ قَيْدٌ لِلْمَوْجُودِ وَصَيْدٌ لِلْمَفْقُودِ
Gratitude preserves what one acquires and secures what he desires.
|مَنْ تَشَرَّعَ وَلَم يَتَحَقَّقْ فَقَدْ تَفَسَّقَ وَمَنْ تَحَقَّقَ وَلَم يَتَشَرَّعْ فَقَدْ تَزَنْدَقَ
“I’m religious, not spiritual” amounts to iniquity, while “I’m spiritual, not religious” amounts to heresy.
—Imām Mālik b. Anas
|قَالَ ابْنُ عَطَاءِ اللهِ إِذَا فَتَحَ لَكَ بَابَ الْفَهْمِ فِي الْمَنْعِ عَادَ الْمَنْعُ عَيْنَ الْعَطَاءِ
When the door of understanding why He deprived you is open, deprivation becomes the very essence of generosity.
—Ibn ʿAṭāʾ Allāh
|Empathy is the “e” that makes the human humane.
||If you’re not 10 minutes early, you’re 5 minutes late, so plan for 20.
|Incense is fragrant when it burns.
—Inspired by Imām al-Shāfiʿī
|“Forgiveness is the fragrance that flowers exude underfoot.”
|– If he was here, I’d say it right to his face!
– Then why are you telling me behind his back!
|If all you ever do is all you’ve ever done, then all you’ll ever be is all you ever are.
—Inspired by Margaret Spellings
|Envy is that poison one drinks expecting someone else to die.
|Jesus once turned to his disciples and asked: “What would you do if a gust of wind exposed your brother as he lay asleep?” They said, “We would rush to cover his nakedness!” He answered, “No, you would strip him bare!”
—Reported by the Prophet Muhammad to warn against gossip.
|Believing is seeing.||Thank God for God!|
|Dear Atheist: as a man of faith, I reject the same god you reject.||Divine revelation is to the intellect what the sun is to the eye, both pairs being indispensable for clear perception.|
|We don’t have to pray five times a day, no, we get to pray five times a day!
—Anse Tamara Gray
|الدُّعَاءُ عَيْنُ اْلِإجَابَةِ
The very fact that we ask of Him is the answer to our prayers.
|Prayer holds back the Hands of Time for but a few precious moments, so never hasten your timeless conversations with God to end.||You have heard that it was said, “What goes up must come down,” but verily, I say unto you, “What goes up must go higher.”|
|On Muslim “identity”: If one experiences Islam as an ideology or worldview, then an “identity crisis” these days is only to be expected; but since Islam is not but the sustained practice of submitting to God and His Messenger ﷺ, then it is indeed a crisis, but one that begins and ends in the ego.||Be wary of the diagnoses of spiritual doctors who haven’t completed residency and who do not know your medical history. More often than not, their prescriptions could be bad for your health.|
|عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللهِ ﷺ يَقُولُ اللهُ تَعَالَى الْكِبْرِيَاءُ رِدَائِي وَالْعَظَمَةُ إِزَارِي فَمَنْ نَازَعَنِي فِيهِمَا قَصَمْتُهُ وَلَا أُبَالِي
“Pride is My outer garment and supremacy is My inner garment. Whosoever tries to strip Me of either, I shall break his back, and I shall not mind.”
|كَانَ اللهُ وَلَا شَيْءَ مَعَهُ
“God was, and there was nothing with Him.”
—Muhammad, the Messenger of God
وَهُوَ الْآنَ عَلَى مَا عَلَيْهِ كَانَ
“…and He is now, as He always was.”
—Ibn ʿAṭā’ʾAllāh al-Sakandarī
|Constants : Variables = Principles : Ideals||Causes, which only seemingly produce effects, are but illusions that veil us from divine power.|
|Everyone may be entitled to their own opinion, but not everyone is entitled to their own opinion being correct.
|In a world where appealing to norms is taboo, be not dismayed as every abnormality becomes normalized, when the abnormal becomes the norm.|
|“Focus on the timeless universals instead of the passing incidentals.”
|Facts nowadays stem more from theories than emerge from truth.
—Inspired by Wolfgang Smith
|مَنْ لَا وُجُودَ لِذَاتِهِ مِنْ ذَاتِهِ | فَوُجُودُهُ لَوْلَاهُ عَيْنُ الْمُحَالِ
Any possible essence whose existence emanates not from its very essence: its existence, were it not for Him, is the very essence of impossibility!
|I think; therefore, I am.
Correction: I think; therefore, He is.
Correction: He is; therefore, I think.
Correction: He is; therefore, I am.
Correction: He is; but who am I?
Correction: He is.
|On the difference between essence and accident: Do we not see how Lucifer turns constants into variables! Do we not see how he turns variables into constants!|
|“I want to be happy enough to wake up without an alarm clock because I want to go into my world!”
—Arsenio Hall on the Magic of Earvin Johnson
|The problem with the food industry is just that.||كُنْتُ أَنَا وَالصِّحَّةُ نَبْحَثُ عَنِ الْمَالِ وَاْلآنَ أَنَا وَالْمَالُ نَبْحَثُ عَنِ الصِّحَّةِ
Health and I used to chase after wealth, now wealth and I chase after health.
|The perception of one’s growth stunts his growth.
—Inspired by Dr. Umar Faruq Abd-Allah
|Prophets were only able to save their people because they served their people.|
|“Peacocks strut because they can’t fly.”
—Dr. Cornel West
|A man once passed by ʿAlī b. Abī Ṭālib عَلَيْهِ السَّلَامُ arrogance in his gait, so he said, “It would be better for you to walk humbly.” He replied, “Do you have any idea who I am!” He answered, “Yes. Your beginning was a putrid drop emitted, your end will be a squalid corpse, and between the two, you are a vessel for filth.” The man humbled himself and walked along his way.|
|Identity is in crisis.||Every -ism is a prism of a mind in prison.|
|You have heard it said, “Speak truth to power!” But verily, I say unto you, “…not until we have the courage to speak truth to the powerless.”|
|For him, “I do not read” was a spiritual station. For us, “I do not read” is spiritual stagnation.||“If you don’t read the newspaper, you’re uninformed; if you do read it, you’re misinformed.”
|يُؤْخَذُ الْعِلْمُ مِنْ صُدُورِ الرِّجَالِ لَا مِنْ سُطُورِ الْكُتُبِ
Knowledge is taken from the hearts of men, not from the strokes of a pen.
|لَوَدَدْتُ أَنَّ النَّاسَ تَعَلَّمُوا هَذَا الْعِلْمَ وَلَا يُنْسَبُ إِلَيَّ شَيْءٌ مِنْهُ أَبَداً فَأُوجِرَ عَلَيْهِ وَلَا يَحْمِدُونِي
If only people would have learned this knowledge without ever ascribing any of it to me, that I may find my reward with God, having never been praised for it.
|Keep the company of Mālikīs; we’ll never rub you the wrong way.||He once drowned a fish with his bare hands, just to be known for doing so.
—The Most Trifling Man in the World
|For many people with “inquiring minds that want to know,” but who would never consider purchasing a tabloid magazine because it’s so beneath them, there’s Facebook.|
|The entirety of life is but one sentence between the quotation marks of birth and death inscribed by the Pen on the Tablet, recording all our notes in the grand and epic symphony of divine love. Fret not, for how many a masterpiece commenced as a jumbled cacophony of writer’s block!|
|When love is your ocean, it absorbs every shift in the tides.||Love would have the lover regard his much as little and the little of his beloved as much!|
|You may break the walls of My House, but not the heart of My servant!
—A common Bengali saying
|The little things are the big things.|
|“Love! Love is just a word until somebody comes along and gives it meaning. You are the meaning.”
|Today I sang the same darn tune as you
It was “Lady in Red,” I hate that song
And I know you do too
You didn’t catch me singin’ along
But I always sing with you
Nice and quietly, cuz I don’t want to stop you
Scrape the skies with tired eyes and I will come find you
If I had all my yesterdays, I’d give ‘em to you too
|قَالَ رَسُولُ اللهِ ﷺ لِمَالِكِ بْنِ عُمَيْرٍ السُّلَمِيِّ وَكَانَ شَاعِراً إِنْ كَانَ وَلَا بُدَّ لَكَ مِنَ الشِّعْرِ فَشَبِّبْ بِامْرَأَتِكَ وَامْدَحْ رَاحِلَتَكَ رَواهُ ابْنُ حَجَرٍ فِي الْإِصَابَة
The Messenger of God ﷺ once said to Mālik b. ʿUmayr al-Sulamī, a poet: “If you must engage in poetry, then let it be to flirt with your wife or praise your steed!”
—Related by Ibn Ḥajar in al-Iṣābah
|No one has ever trusted geometry as boldly as the Turks!|
|When I grow up, I want to be just like my son!||Why am I Muslim, you ask?
Because my children are Muslim.
|The best thing you can give to a child is a happy parent.
|When our master, `Ali b. Abi Talib عليه السلام, went to the Prophet ﷺ as a young boy to profess his faith to him, the Prophet asked him, “Did you seek your father’s permission before coming to me?” He replied, “Did God seek my father’s permission before creating me?”|
|The nafs (ego) seeks autonomy over its own choices. We know this all too well as adults. From the time their fingernails are still tender, children will resist authoritarian parenting, but will respond best when led or talked into their own choices. Abraham discerned this perfectly, and so asked his son what he thought about his vision. Anas said that he served the Prophet ten years and he never once expressed the slightest sigh of frustration with him. Dear Lord, spare our children whatever trauma our demands and frustrations may pass along, knowingly or unknowingly.||On Screenagers:
The fathers eat sour grapes, and the children’s teeth are set on edge.
إذا كان رب البيت بالدف ضاربا فشيمة أهل البيت كلهم الرقص
If the head of the household is beating drums, his entire family will be characterized by dance.
|If you can’t join ’em, beat ’em!||Religion used to reform sinners, now sinners reform religion.|
|When the liberal left embraces you, but only with a knife in your back, and the conservative right would rather knife you than embrace you, it is time for a third party.||If you expect me to apologize for acts of violence perpetrated in the name of my religion, then you owe me an apology.
|On Drinking the Kool-Aid:
Can’t really fault you when there’s nothing else on the table.
|God’s take on “privilege”:
“The living are not equal to the dead!” —al-Fāṭir 35:22
|Did I hear someone say, “Crime doesn’t pay!” Lots of criminals in police uniform have been making a killing for decades!||An ancient take on being woke:
عَنْ عَلِيِّ بْنِ أَبِي طَالِبٍ عَلَيْهِ السَّلَامُ النَّاسُ نِيَّامٌ فَإِذَا مَاتُوا انْتَبَهُوا وَإِذَا انْتَبَهُوا نَدِمُوا وَإِذَا نَدِمُوا فَلَا يَنْفَعُهُمُ النَّدَمُ فَمُوتُوا قَبْلَ مَوْتِكُم
“People are asleep, and when they die, they wake up, and when they wake up, they regret, and when they regret, their regret avails them naught, so die before you die.”
—ʿAlī b. Abī Ṭālib عليه السلام
|On Hollywood’s Social Engineering:
إذا لم تستحْيِ فاصنع ما شئت
If you have no shame, then: “Do what thou wilt!”
—Muhammad, the Messenger of God ﷺ
|Moses asked, and was not shown. Muhammad was shown, and did not ask.
|If the wives of the Prophet are the mothers of the faithful, then he is their father!|
|مَا مَدَحْتُ مُحَمَّدًا بِمَقَالَتِي
وَلَكِنْ مَدَحْتُ مَقَالَتِي بِمُحَمَّدٍ
I do not praise Muhammad with my speech; I praise my speech with Muhammad!
|اللّٰهُمَّ أَرِنِي الْأَشْياءَ كَما هِيَ
“God, show me all things as they truly are.”
In order to do what Prophets did, one must have what Prophets had, i.e., a grip on reality.
—Muhammad, the Prophet ﷺ
|The materialist lives trying to “make something out of himself,” while the devotee lives trying to “annihilate the self.”|
|I—I am your Lord: so take off your shoes!
—Ṭā Hā 20:12
|He said: “I shall now migrate unto my Lord.”
—Abraham, the Prophet of God (al-ʿAnkabūt 29:26)
|وَالنَّازِعَاتِ غَرْقًا . وَالنَّاشِطَاتِ نَشْطًا . وَالسَّابِحَاتِ سَبْحًا . فَالسَّابِقَاتِ سَبْقًا . فَالْمُدَبِّرَاتِ أَمْرًا . يَوْمَ تَرْجُفُ الرَّاجِفَةُ النازعات ١ – ٦
By those who tear out souls with violence! By those who with joyous release release them! By those who swim gliding along! By those who swiftly surpass—thereby bringing the matter to its end! On a day wherein the first blast convulses.
|وَأَشْرَقَتِ الْأَرْضُ بِنُورِ رَبِّهَا وَوُضِعَ الْكِتَابُ وَجِيءَ بِالنَّبِيِّينَ وَالشُّهَدَاءِ وَقُضِيَ بَيْنَهُم بِالْحَقِّ وَهُمْ لَا يُظْلَمُونَ
And when the Earth shall shine with the light of her Lord, when the Scroll shall be placed, when the Prophets and those who gave their lives shall be brought forth, and mankind judged aside with the Truth, while no one shall go wronged.
|عَنْ أَبِي سَعِيدٍ الْخُدْرِيِّ رَضِيَ اللهُ عَنْهُ قَالَ أَوْصِنِي يَا رَسُولَ اللهِ فَقَالَ عَلَيْكَ بِذِكْرِ اللهِ وَتِلَاوَةِ الْقُرْآنِ فَإِنَّهُ رُوحُكَ فِي السَّمَاءِ وَذِكْرُكَ فِي الْأَرْضِ
Abū Saʿīd al-Khudrī once said, “Advise me, Messenger of God.” He said: “Hold fast to the remembrance of God, which is your soul in the heavens, and to the recitation of the Qur’an, which is your remembrance on Earth.”
|قَالَ الْإِمَامُ الْأَوْزَاعِيُّ عَنْ مَكْحُولٍ إِنَّ الْقُرْآنَ أَحْوَجُ إِلَى السُّنَّةِ مِنَ السُّنَّةِ إِلَى الْقُرْآنِ
The Qur’an needs the Sunnah more than the Sunnah needs the Qur’an.
|Every time someone says, “Let me play Devil’s advocate,” an angel wonders why.||God, save me from Your followers. Wait, what am I thinking! God, save Your followers from me.|
|Half of all Americans are on anti-depressants. The other half just hasn’t been diagnosed.||The ego can either be slain with self esteem or with a broken psyche, but who has a whole lifetime to clean up all the collateral damage!|
|67% of all statistics are not verifiable.||Wardrobe malfunction: today’s fashion statement.|
|Sometimes you just can’t understand what is being said at a Friday sermon, and sometimes you just wish you couldn’t.||– What does Islam say about x?- “You mean, what does God say about x, right?
– “Yeah, in Islam?”
|“Let the dead bury the dead.”
—Jesus, the Son of Mary, the Word of God (Matthew 8:22)
|Since our phones are pretty much “digital heroin” for most of us, it may be time to finally kick the habit.|
|One of the greatest benefits of social media is that it empowers us to sit in solidarity with the oppressed all of the world.||The day I fathom that He is sustaining the world is the day I’ll discover that what distracts me from Him actually doesn’t exist.|
|يَا أَيُهَا الْإِنْسَانُ مَا غَرَكَ بِرَبِكَ الْكَرِيمِ
سبحان الذي أجاب عن سؤاله في سؤاله
God: “Man! What has deluded you from your generous Lord?”
Man: “Your generosity, dear Lord.”
|Our Prophet ﷺ on the comment section of pretty much every post out there:
مَا ضَلَّ قَوْمٌ بَعْدَ هُدًى كَانُوا عَلَيْهِ إِلَّا أُوتُوا الْجَدَلَ “No people will ever deviate from the guidance they are upon except their legacy shall be reduced to quarreling.”
|Men and women can never be equal because they are mutually superior.
—Abdal Hakim Murad
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