Property as an Idol
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property). God is the only one worthy of worship. The commercial gains we harvest should be put in service of God, and be a source of continuous appreciation. Business should not distract us from God (24:36-38). We should force ourselves to observe the commandments, even if it means giving up on trade or the vanities of this world (62:9; 18:28).
Who Is Worthy of Worship?
[30:40] GOD is the One who created you. He is the One who provides for you. He is the One who puts you to death. He is the One who resurrects you. Can any of your idols do any of these things? Be He glorified. He is much too exalted to have any partners. Disasters have spread throughout the land and sea, because of what the people have committed. He thus lets them taste the consequences of some of their works, that they may return (to the right works).
[24:36-37] (God’s guidance is found) in houses exalted by GOD, for His name is commemorated therein. Glorifying Him therein, day and night―People who are not distracted by business or trade from commemorating GOD; they observe the Contact Prayers (Salat), and give the obligatory charity (Zakat), and they are conscious of the day when the minds and the eyes will be horrified.
We conclude with David and Solomon’s example of devotion to God and not this world (27:15-19).
[27:15-19] We endowed David and Solomon with knowledge, and they said, “Praise GOD for blessing us more than many of His believing servants.” Solomon was David’s heir. He said, “O people, we have been endowed with understanding the language of the birds, and all kinds of things have been bestowed upon us. This is indeed a real blessing.” Mobilized in the service of Solomon were his obedient soldiers of jinns and humans, as well as the birds; all at his disposal. When they approached the valley of the ants, one ant said, “O you ants, go into your homes, lest you get crushed by Solomon and his soldiers, without perceiving.” He smiled and
laughed at her statement, and said, “My Lord, direct me to be appreciative of the blessings You have bestowed upon me and my parents, and to do the righteous works that please You. Admit me by Your mercy into the company of Your righteous servants.”
1 “Deepwater Horizon oil spill”,
2 “Exxon Valdez oil spill”
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A Month to Reflect
Ramadan (also spelled as ramadhan, ramazan, so on) is a very special month for Muslims. It is the lunar month during which the Quran was revealed, providing guidance for the people, clear teachings, and the statute book. God decreed us to fast during this month to express our appreciation (2:183, 185).
Why pray or fast?
The religious practices instituted by God, such as fasting in Ramadan, are not ordeals but rather great opportunities for us to develop our souls. They are blessings from God. If we can practice our religious duties the way we are supposed to, we get many benefits. Furthermore, these practices allow us to be more conscious of God in our lives.
Some people surmise that God should not need any of our prayers and appreciation of His blessings. They think that God has ego and needs to satisfy Himself through our worship. But that is an absolutely blasphemous attitude. In fact, they are the ones who have big egos. God makes it clear that He does not need any of our worship or any of us, but He is pleased for us if we make the right choice and decide to be appreciative (39:7). Therefore, if we are appreciative, it is for our own good (31:12).
Above and beyond nourishing our soul, the real self, fasting also has numerous, scientifically proven benefits for our physical health and the mental well-being of our
body. The time, length and nature of the fast all contribute to its overall positive effect. Fasting gives our digestive system a rest and improves our physical health.
When is Ramadan 2010?
In order to determine the beginning and ending of a lunar month in Islamic calendar, the first thing we need to know is the definition of a day. The Islamic day is the same as the Hebrew day. It begins at sunset and ends at the next sunset. In this system, the night comes before the day.
We also need to know the new moon times to be used for determining the beginning and ending of the lunar month. The Muslims during the time of Prophet Muhammad did not have the technological advantage we have today. They needed to see the crescent moon before they started fasting. God tells us that He rendered the sun and the moon as calculation devices (6:96, 10:5, 17:12, 55:5).
We have the technology to determine precisely when the different phases of the moon will appear for any given month, now or in the future, according to the design of God. So we don’t need physical sighting of the moon to decide when the month of Ramadan will start or end.
Therefore the new moon times to be used for determining the beginning and ending of Ramadan are given below in UT (Universal Time) or also known as GMT (Greenwich Mean Time).
August 10, 2010: 3:08am (UT)
September 8, 2010: 10:30am (UT)
The actual time for each time zone is relative to UT. In order to calculate the Ramadan start date, compare the time of the New Moon with the Sunset in your location. If the new moon is before sunset, you should fast the next day, God willing.
Similarly, to determine the last day of fasting, compare the time of the next New Moon with the sunset in your location. If the new moon is before sunset, the month of Ramadan is complete on that day. Otherwise one needs to fast the next day.
Therefore, God willing the first day of Ramadan is August 11, 2010, and the last day of Ramadan is September 8, 2010 for most parts of the world.
The Night of Destiny (Night of Power) will be, God willing, on September 5, 2010.
Please check your local sunset times to
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