The protection and elevation of the Black women in the Nation was always in the forefront with women holding key positions of leadership and influence. During the early days of Islam, it was women like Mother Clara Muhammad and others who kept the movement afloat and functioning. Mother Clara Muhammad was the First Lady of the Nation Of Islam and wife of the Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad. She was born Clara Evans on November 4, 1899, in Cordele, Georgia to Quarters and Mary Lou Evans. Clara, her two brothers, and two sisters, grew up on their parents’ ranch. They attended public school and worked in the fields. Clara’s mother’s family, the Thomases, were known for their good Samaritan characteristics and their quest and support for education. These traits helped shape the great woman that Clara became.
At the age of 17, Clara married Elijah Poole. She experienced firsthand the injustices of the Jim Crow South. By the time of the Great Depression in 1929, Clara, her husband, and their two small children joined millions in the Great Migration from the southern states to the Midwest. They took up residence in Detroit, Michigan. Hard times persisted up North as they struggled to support their growing family without full-time employment. Mother Clara described in a 1967 Muhammad Speaks article,“With five children, there were times we didn’t have a piece of bread in the house, nor heat, water or even sufficient wearing apparel. My husband would walk the streets looking for a job daily but would come home with no job. I would go out and try to help him, but with five children I could not work steadily. However, I was successful when I went door to door, asking for work.” Mother Clara, therefore, experienced the common reality of black women working as domestic servants in white homes where their humanity was insulted with scant wages and the risk of sexual violence. It made sense, that she found Master Fard Muhammad’s teachings of race and economic advancement attractive when she heard it from a friend in 1931: “My girlfriend told me there’s a man who’s saying some things about our people… .We once dressed in long flowing cloth and we were royal.” Upon her friend’s invitation to meet Master Fard Muhammad, her first thought was her husband, who was haunted by hopelessness and despair. “Maybe this might help my husband,” she prayed. Elijah agreed to attend the next meeting, which proved miraculous as it marked the beginnings of a great relationship between Master Fard Muhammad and Elijah Muhammad that paved the way for the Nation of Islam. According to Imam W. D. Mohammed,“When the meeting was over, as they were walking out, my father told my mother, ‘Clara, when you go back home, we gon’ have to throw all the pork out of the ice box.’ Now that’s what one lecture, one speech did.”
For three and a half years Master Fard taught and groomed Elijah to be the leader of the newly-formed Nation of Islam. Clara was her husband’s first convert and best follower. As the Nation of Islam grew, so did Clara Muhammad’s contribution. During the early stages of the NOI’s development, Clara and her family endured many trying events. In 1931, Mother Clara took a courageous stand for the right to educate her children in her home when homeschooling was illegal. She refused to enroll her children in public school saying she would rather die first. As a result, she and her husband were charged with contributing to the delinquency of minors. Her brave stance against a truant officer paved the way for the establishment of the largest private elementary school system for Black children in the United States of America, Muhammad University of Islam (MUI).
Mother Clara Muhammad with her husband, The Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad, and sons.
Clara Muhammad took on the enormous task of carrying the organization while her husband was fleeing a death plot. She and other Muslim sisters conducted the affairs of the Nation as the men followed their leader, the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, to jail rather than join an unjust war for America. While Elijah Muhammad was on the run, Mother Clara was an irresistible force of inspiration and moral courage for Muhammad’s ministers and followers, encouraging them to continue the work of Nation building via regular meetings and recruiting throughout the duration of Elijah Muhammad’s absence. For many years Clara served as her husband’s liaison to the NOI, delivering both written and verbal instructions to the lead minister in Chicago, while her husband was imprisoned for draft evasion. If it were not for mother Clara, the Nation of Islam could have been disintegrated without the leadership of a woman with vision, faith, and resourcefulness. She held The Nation together and her family together. During his incarceration, Elijah Muhammad was a model prisoner and was allowed to teach his fellow inmates about Islam but his request for a Qur’an was denied. Mother Clara copied on paper English translations of verses of the Qur’an and brought them to her husband! Thanks to her courageous devotion, the Nation of Islam survived and prison inmates enjoy access to the Qur’an.
Once Elijah Muhammad returned to his family and the movement began to thrive, Sister Clara Muhammad’s influence reached further. She had pioneered the NOI’s primary and secondary independent schools, established on a national scale by the 1950s. This was unprecedented in both black and Muslim communities. The Nation’s school system, instituted by Master Fard Muhammad, was given the lofty title, “The University of Islam.” The first classes were in Clara Muhammad’s home, and she was the first teacher. Mother Clara Muhammad served as the exemplar of feminine virtues instilled in MGT & GCC, short for Muslim Girls Training and General Civilization Class. The girls
of the NOI were scorned for wearing long dresses when it wasn’t
fashionable and every Muslim Woman in America owes a debt of gratitude
to Mother Clara Muhammad.
Mother Clara Muhammad in her MGT & GCC pin.
The noble stature and virtuous path carved out for the Muslim woman by this meek and majestic woman, as she gave a beacon of light and graceful examples to the followers of The Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad, as she sought the restoration of the Black Woman as Queen of the Universe cannot be reduced. In her deeply moving, quiet way, Mother Clara Muhammad set a sterling national standard for all Black women to follow. She recreated the very definitions of devotion, righteousness, honorable, zealous, and good works that sustained Elijah Muhammad during those early, burdensome years of the Nation Of Islam when the Muslims were despised by their confused brothers and sisters and persecuted by their enemy. Mother Clara Muhammad in her modesty and filled with inner spiritual purpose and an undying vision of a great Black Nation anchored by and bent upon bringing true Freedom, Justice, and Equality, was a warrior and great companion of her husband. She never trembled before the tremendous opposition that was set before her. She manifested a new path for the Black Women of America. Mother Clara Muhammad remained greatly devoted to Allah, her husband, her family, to the Nation, and to the Muslim schools. She was the strongest and most courageous and dedicated woman of her time. She upheld a posture of grace, modesty, righteousness, kindness, and dignity and her example was unparalleled by most women of her day. Her spirit still lives on today.
Your talk should be clear, concise and to the point. Do not talk and talk and talk. Bukhari and Muslim reported that Anas said ‘The Prophet’s talk was precise clear, and succinct without undue elaboration.’ Al-Hafiz Al-Zahabi wrote in his biography of Imam Ibn Sireen, the great scholar and eminent follower of the companions, that: ‘Whenever he was in his mother’s presence, he would talk in such a low voice that you would think that he was ill.’ In his biography of Abdullah bin Awn Al-Basri, a student of Imam Ibn Sireen and one of the famous scholars Al-Hafiz Al-Zahabi, noted: ‘One time his mother called him and because he responded with a voice louder than hers, he was fearful and repentant and he freed two slaves.’
‘Asim bin Bahdelah Al-Koofi, the reciterof the Quran, said: ‘I visited Omar bin ‘Abdul Aziz, and a man spoke loudly, and Omar replied: ‘Stop it. You need not talk loudly. Talk loud enough to make your listeners hear.’
When you want someone to believe you and no one even tries to listen to you?
Isn’t this feeling familiar to you? Isn’t this what is happening with people who speak about Islam nowadays?
We are shut off, if we ever land on the news, we land on very small lines, and if we land on the big titles and lines, it is to drag our religion into acts of terrorism or violence.
This one, I write as a dedication to all my fellow Muslims who never doubted about their religion and who chooses to speak of what is the truth even if nobody would listen to them.
My fellow writers, my fellow motivational speakers, my brothers and sisters in Islam, I remind you of the story of ‘Umair Ibn Sa’d Radiyallahu Anhu, the boy whom Allah Azza Wa Jall attested to with a revelation of a certain ayah. We may pass through it every single day when we read the Qur’an yet the impact is not as much until we know of this story. in sha Allah.
One day while the Messenger of Allah Sallallahu Alaihi Wassalaam was sitting in the masjid, teaching and instructing his Companions, a young boy whose heart was full of faith and who was also sitting in the assembly, got up and walked to his uncle Jallas Ibn Suweid.
Ibn Suweid was a 60 year old hypocrite, with a heart as hard as stone. He would pray along the Messenger of Allah Sallallahu Alaihi Wassalaam, fast in ramadhan, and go on pilgrimage to Makkah (to perform ‘umrah) but did not believe in the mission of Allah’s messenger Sallallahu Alahi Wassalaam.
The young boy said, “Uncle, I have heard Allah’s Messenger Sallallahu Alaihi Wassalaam describing the Hour so vividly that I felt I was seeing it with my own eyes.”
Jallas said to the young boy, “By Allah, if Muhammad speaks the truth, then we are worse than donkeys.”
Hearing this, the young boy’s face turned red with rage, his body trembled, and he said, “O Uncle, by Allah, you were dearer to me than all the men but now none is more hateful in my eyes than you. Uncle, I have two options: Either I don’t inform Allah’s Messenger Sallallahu Alaihi Wassalaam and thus betray him and Allah or I tell him, come what may.”
Jallas said, “You are a little child. No one will believe you. Say what you will.”
The little boy took small steps to Allah’s Messenger Sallallahu Alaihi Wassalaam, sat down in front of him and said, “O Messenger of Allah Sallallahu Alaihi Wassalaam, Jallas Ibn Suweid betrayed Allah and His Messenger. He is my uncle. I resort to Allah and you. I am clear of his guilt.”
The Messenger of Allah Sallallahu Alaihi Wassalaam asked him, “What did he say?”
The child replied narrating what his uncle has told him. So the Messenger of Allah Sallallahu Alaihi Wassalaam gathered his Companions and consulted them. The Companions said, “He is a small child. Don’t believe him. He doesn’t know what he says. Jallas Ibn Suweid prays with us. He is an old man and sensible.”
The Messenger of Allah Sallallahu Alaihi Wassalaam heard their counsel and kept quiet. The child was filled with anguish when he heard what happened. He wept and looked up towards the sky and said, “O Allah, if I have spoken the truth, then let it be evident that I am truthful, and if I am a liar, then let it be evident that I am a liar.”
By Allah, the child had hardly moved away from the masjid when Jibrail Alaihi Salaam came down with the divine revelation:
“They swear by Allah that they did not say [anything against the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wassalaam] while they had said the word of disbelief and disbelieved after their [pretense of] Islam…” Qur'an 9:74
Then the Messenger of Allah Sallallahu Alaihi Wassalaam called Jallas Ibn Suweid and questioned him, but he denied having said anything against the Messenger of Allah Sallallahu Alaihi Wassalaam. So he Sallallahu Alaihi Wassalaam repeated the verse that was revealed to him and said, “Jallas, you disbelieved in Allah. Now repent to Allah because Allah says, "So if they repent, it is better for them.” Qur'an 9:74
Then the Messenger of Allah Sallallahu Alaihi Wassalaam called the child and said to him, “Welcome to the one whose statement Allah corroborated from the seven heavens.”
The young child, a paragon of virtue, truth and Islamic zeal, was known as ‘Umair Ibn Sa’d Ubaid Ibn nauman Ansari Radiyallahu Anhu. He was known as the boy whom the Messenger of Allah Sallallahu Alaihi Wassalam said holding his ears: “Boy your ear was truthful (that is, what you heard was true). Your Lord corroborated your words.”
Subhan'Allah let us take a moment to ponder hard about this story. Let us take time to gather our thoughts and see how this situation is so similar to how people are seeing Islam nowadays.
Like the little child, the real Islam is being taken for granted and not being truly discovered because of the barriers and shades that majority of uneducated people put over it.
Like the little child, Allah will always make way for the truth to come out, so like the little child I ask you O Muslims to stay firm on this religion, at this time when so many people are attacking our religion, this is the best time to hold hands together and stick together and show people how tolerant and beautiful this deen is.
Even if people wouldn’t listen to us, what matters most is that Allah is our witness that He knows everything that is happening and how we are coping up through deepening our worship unto him and holding firmer and stronger with every endeavor being placed in front of us.
O my dear brothers and sisters in Islam, better days are coming. Do not let go, hold on and soon we will flourish and soon the name of Allah will be raised in every corner of the Earth.
We are the best of all nations, we are the best of all people, we are the people of Mercy and tolerance. Be worthy of your greatest blessing, being a Muslim, being a slave of Allah Azza Wa Jall.
Stand firm, stand firmer for Allah Azza Wa Jall. in sha Allah.
And we pray that Allah Azza Wa Jall showers His abundant Mercy and blanket every Muslim home with His Protection and Guidance.
Stories were taken from
• Suyuti narrated it in Ad-durr al Manthur 3/463-464 on the authority of Ibn Abi Hatim, 'Abdur Razzaq and Ibn Mundhir
Do you feel the words of Allah Azza Wa Jall talking to you that with an instant you turn to Him, repent, ask forgiveness and abide to His commandments?
Is this how the Qur'an affects you?
We hear a lot of stories about conversions to Islam, but when you go and read about these stories all of them goes back to the core of Islam, the Qur'an.
It is always His Words that sparks and ignites ones heart to fully turn back to His Creator.
Today, I would like to “again” narrate to you the story of ‘Umar Ibn Al Khattab Radiyallahu Anhu, I know many have read about this but do me a favor and read until the end, and I pray it enlightens and inspires your heart to fall in love again with the words of Allah Azza Wa Jall.
Nua'im Radiyallahu Anhu spotted 'Umar Ibn Al Khattab with his sword in his hand, and realized that he was setting out with the intention of harming the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wassalaam, with his, Nu'am divulged the news to 'Umar that he should check on his sister first for she and her husband had embraced islam.
Upon hearing that Faatimah Radiyallahu Anha, (his sister) and her husband, Sa'eed Radiyallahu Anhu had embraced Islam, 'Umar was overcome by a fit of uncontrollable rage.
He then headed straight towards his sister’s house and banged on the door.
Faatimah, Sa'eed and Khabbab (their Qur'an teacher) were inside busy reading the Qur'an. As soon as they heard 'Umar’s angry voice, they stopped what they were doing. Khabbab Radiyallahu Anhu found a place to hide and by the time 'Umar entered, Faatimah did not have enough time to hide the scroll (other narrations say it was a piece of leaf) from which they were reading the Qur'an- and so she hurriedly tried to hide it under her leg.
Faatimah Radiyallahu Anha prepared for the worst, for she immediately saw and understood the meaning of the evil expression of 'Umar’s face.
“I heard you speaking in low, secretive voices, what were you saying?” 'Umar demanded. (They were reciting Chapter Ta-Ha of the Noble Qur'an.)
“We were just having a conversation between ourselves.” Faatimah said.
“Perhaps the two of you have abandoned your religion,” said 'Umar.
Sa'eed said, “O 'Umar, suppose that the truth lies in something other than your religion.”
'Umar suddenly hunged at Sa'eed and pulled his beard. The two of them struggled for a brief period, but 'Umar was clearly stronger, pinning his opponent on the ground and then sitting on his chest.
Seeing this, Faatimah came and tried to push 'Umar off her husband, but then 'Umar struck her on her face, which resulted in blood streaming down the side of her face. In angry tone, Faatimah exclaimed, “O enemy of Allah! Do you strike me simply because I believe in the Oneness of Allah?” He dryly replied, “Yes.”
Now one will be truly amazed on the faith of Faatimah as she said, “Then do whatever you planned to do. I bear witness that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah. We have embraced Islam in spite of you!”
When 'Umar Radiyallahu Anhu heard these words, he began to regret what he had done. He got off Sa'eed Radiyallahu Anhu and sat down beside him on the ground. And he then said, “give me the scroll that is with you, so that I can read it.” Faatimah said,“I will not do that.”
'Umar said, “Woe upon you! What you said struck a chord in my heart, so give it to me and let me see it. I give you the sincerest and strongest of pledges that I will not betray (by tearing it apart, for instance) and that I will give it back to you so you can then safeguard it in any place of your choosing.”
“You are impure,” Faatimah replied, thus alluding to the saying of Allah Azza Wa Jall (Qur'an 56:79)
“Then stand up and take a bath, or at least perform ablution,” Faatimah said.
'Umar left, took a bath, and then returned to his sister, who then gave him the scroll. It contained Chapter Ta-Ha, in addition to other chapters of the Qur'an. The first words 'Umar read were: In the name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful.“
Upon reading the words: "The Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful,” 'Umar felt frightened and dropped the scroll from his hand. When he then regained his composure, he picked up the scroll again and read the following verses of Chapter Ta-Ha:
“Ta-Ha. We have not sent down the Qur'an unto you (O Muhammad) to cause you distress, But only as a Reminder to those who fear (Allah). A revelation from Him (Allah) Who has created the earth and high heavens. The Most Beneficent (Allah) rose over (Istawa) the (Mighty) throne (in a manner that suits His Mejsty). To Him belongs all that is in the heavens and all that is on the earth, and all that is between them, and all that is under the soil. And if you (O Muhammad) speak (the invocation) aloud, then verily, He knows the secret and that which is yet more hidden. Allah! La ilaha ila Huwa (none has the right to be worshipped but He)! To Him belong the Best Names.” Qur'an 20:1-8
He felt the magnificence and greatness of what he was reading for upon finishing the said verses, he commented, “Is it from this that the Quraish have been running away?” He then continued to read on, until he reached the saying of Allah Azza Wa Jall:
“Verily! I am Allah! La ilaha illa Ana. ( none has the right to be worshipped but I), so worship Me, and perform As-Salat (Iqamat-as-Salat) for My remembrance. Verily, the Hour is coming-and My Will is to keep it hidden- that every person may be rewarded for that which he strives. Therefore, let not the one who believes not therein (i.e in the Day of Resurrection, Reckoning, Paradise and Hell, etc.), but follows his own lusts, divert you therefrom, lest you perish.” Qur'an 20:14-16
'Umar then said, “As for the One Who says this, it is not fitting that any other (false idol, person, angel or anyone or anything for that matter) should be worshipped alongside him. TAKE ME TO MUHAMMAD.”
Subhan'Allah. After hearing 'Umar Radiyallahu Anhu uttered those last words, Khabbab who was hiding came out from his hiding place and exclaimed,“ rejoice, O'Umar! For Indeed I hope that the supplication of the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wassalaam made on Monday is being answered with you. He Sallallahu Alaihi Wassalaam said, "O Allah, honor Islam with the more beloved of these two men to you: Abu Jahl Ibn Hisham or 'Umar Ibn Al Khattab.”
And we all know what happened next, 'Umar was more beloved to Allah Azza Wa Jall for 'Umar embraced Islam.
Now why did I highlight this story of 'Umar for this blessed day of Jumu'ah? Time by time, Muslims need reminders, inspiration and motivation. A lot of Muslims nowadays, have made the Qur'an nothing but among the ordinary books on their shelves, or decorations on their houses.
O Muslims, the Qur'an is to be read and reflected upon! Do not put it on your shelves for it is for you to use, have we forgotten how the Sahabah radiyallahu Anhum struggled to compile such beautiful gift from Allah?
Reflect O Muslims, are we the likes of 'Umar Ibn Al Khattab that when He read parts of the Qur'an he had the urge to enter the fold of Islam, we are Muslims, but indeed everyday we need to renew our iman, we need to enter again the fold of Islam, but how can one be given such thirst for Islam when one doesn’t become affected by the words of Allah Azza Wa Jall?
Or are we the likes of Faatimah and Sa'eed Radiyallahu Anhum who stood up for Islam, even tho they knew they could have faced death on that time?
Know that only through the words of Allah Azza Wa Jall did Faatimah and Sa'eed;s hearts feel such strength within them to stand up for it and it is only through the words of Allah Azza Wa Jall did the heart of 'Umar Ibn Al Khattab become guided!
Today is a blessed day, Mercy indeed is hovering upon us, regain your strength, redeem your soul, renew your imaan, go read the Qu'ran.
And may Allah Azza Wa Jall fill our hearts with hidayah, rahma and barakah from Him.
The Copenhagen police said on Sunday that they had shot and killed a man they believed carried out two attacks that left two people dead, one at a cafe and one outside a synagogue, and wounded at least five policemen.
The first attack took place on Saturday, when a gunman sprayed bullets into the cafe where a Swedish cartoonist who had caricatured the Prophet Muhammad was speaking, killing one man. Hours later, early Sunday, a man was shot and killed outside the city’s main synagogue, according to the police.
Dan Rosenberg Asmussen, a leader of Denmark’s Jewish community, told the Danish public broadcaster DR that the victim at the synagogue was a young Jewish man who was guarding the entrance of a building adjacent to the synagogue. He said that some 80 people were inside the synagogue at the time, celebrating a Bat Mitzvah, and that the police had been asked to provide protection after the cafe shooting.
The dual attacks in Copenhagen had a copycat resemblance to last month’s attacks in Paris, which began with gunshots aimed at cartoonists and followed with gunshots aimed at a Jewish target.
Later Sunday, Jorgen Skov, a police inspector, said at a news conference in Copenhagen that the police had shot and killed the suspect after he opened fire on officers near the Norreport train and subway station in the Norrebro neighborhood. The shooter was confronted by the police as he returned to an address that they were keeping under surveillance, Mr. Skov said, suspecting that the man had been involved in the killings. The police have no indication for the moment that other suspects were involved, he said.
Torben Moelgaard Jensen, a senior police official, said: “We believe the same man was behind both shootings and we also believe that the perpetrator who was shot by the police action force at Norrebro station is the person behind the two attacks.”
It was a dramatic day in Copenhagen, with 30 shots fired Saturday afternoon into a cafe at a public seminar on “Art, Blasphemy and Freedom of Expression,” intended to discuss the January attack in Paris on the offices of Charlie Hebdo, the satirical newspaper that had reprinted Danish cartoons of Muhammad. The event featured a Swedish cartoonist, Lars Vilks, 68, who had drawn a 2007 cartoon of Muhammad as a dog at a traffic circle and was on a “death list” drawn up by Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, as was the murdered editor of Charlie Hebdo, Stéphane Charbonnier.
One man, 55, and still unidentified by the authorities, was killed in the cafe attack and three police officers were wounded. Mr. Vilks, who is under 24-hour police guard, was well-protected by both the Swedish and Danish police who prevented the gunman, who had shot up the front of the cafe, from entering it. The man escaped in a small Volkswagen, later abandoned, and hours later, just after midnight, the Jewish man was shot in the head and killed in central Copenhagen, near the synagogue. Two more police officers were wounded and again the gunman escaped, this time on foot.