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Mauritanian Adventures

This blog traces my experience as a Seeker of Knowledge and my travelings/visits around West Africa, Morocco, France and UK

Updated: 2018-01-15T16:47:05.148+00:00


Thierno Cheikh Ahmed Tijani Sall: visit to the UK soon...


Thierno Cheikh Ahmed Tijani Sall (left) saluting Sidi Sharif Zubayr Tidjani (right) in the Zawiya Tijaniyah in Fez, Morocco. Click photo to enlarge.

Shaykh Muhammad Al-Yaqoubi in Paris 7,8 & 9 octobre 2011


(image) Anyone who needs accomodation or any information please contact +33 (0)6 76 41 27 45 or



To Allah we belong and to Him we shall return. I got to know Maryam through milk... Al Haaj Fahfu's family are herders, and as a matter of fact, he must possess perhaps 100 cows or more or less...
Slowly slowly I noticed that students were getting some milk every evening. As I love milk so much, after enquiring, I discovered that students were getting their fills under the tent of Murabit al Haaj!
Salik, the grand son of Murabit told me: "if you want some milk, go and see Maryam?" I thought, who is Maryam..?
Indeed Maryam was a very discreet old woman... Anyway, I was told to go and see her after my dinner with an empty recipient. Which I did.

I walked to Murabit's tent. On the open side of it, 10's of recipients were on the floor. Maryam, always wearing dark clothes, was sitting behind them all, and as I arrived, I bent down and habded over my wooden recipient. She looked at me, wondering who I was. Her grandson arrived to the recue: "It's Abdelmalik, the foreign student!", he told her, in Hassaniya.
There was not one day I missed my meeting with Maryam. Standing in front of the tent while she was pooring some milk into my container was always a mystical moment: here she was sitting down on her rug, with 10's of bowls in front of her, some big, some smalls, some empty, some filled to the brim with still a warm milk fresh from the cows! I could always hear Murabit at the back, in the darkness of the tent, mentionning always always the name of Allah. Bamba, a freed slave, was coming forth and back with the milk he just had from milking the cows 50 metres away.

I never understood the exact system she was using; why she had so many bowls in front of her, that she was always placing in specific order. One day I couldn't find my own bowl, so I came to her with the recipient of a friend; although it was a normal metallic bowl no different to others, when I put it in front of the tent for her to fill it, she took it, touched it and said: "This is mine". When I went back to my tent, I told my friend what Maryam had said, and he said: "What what she'd said is true". I was then realisng that she knew exactly every single bowl she had in front of her: to whom it belong, how much people will drink from it, hence how much she should put in it...

I never got to speak much with her.
She was very reserved and desinterested mashallah.

One of the things that stroke me when I first got to Twemret, was the how loud the imam, shaykh Hadd Amin, was reciting the prayers, especially the takbirs throughout the prayer...
I later on realised that it might be because Maryam was praying with us, from behind a tent. It seems she was showing strenght and endurance in prayer with the jamaat mashallah.

Perhaps I can say that her husband, murabit al Haaj, and her brother, Shaykh Khattry, perhaps indicate the excellent quality of person that she was.
Visitors always enquired about her, addressing her as "alwâlidah", the mother.

She was always quiet, ready to answer people's questions, but never speaking first.

Shaykh Hamza have paid an emotional and moving tribute to "alwâlidah"; and her disappearance is a great loss to Twemret, its people and its students.
She was living for the mahdhara and was an integral part of it.

We ask Allah to forgive her and to grant her Jannah; may he also grant her family relieves and give them patience in that difficult period. Amin

Israel-Palestine conflict


Muhammad Mekki est né en Afrique du Sud ou il a vécu un temps avant d'aller vivre en Israel. De confession juive jusqu'à novembre 2008, Muhammad s'est finalement converti à l'islam. Il nous livre ici, en anglais (traduction disponible dans peu de temps), ses impressions au sujet de l' état hébreux et de la situation abominable depuis le début de la guerre à Gaza, qui a déjà fait des centaines de morts et des milliers de bléssés:"When I was at university in South Africa, my country of birth, the then Israeli Ambassador came to give a talk about the situation in the Middle East to students of politics. The talk was extremely narrow in scope and she used nothing but bible scriptures to back up Israel's right to be in the Middle East. This immediately made me understand Israel's belief on conflict as the stories quoted from the bible were about conquering and war; i.e. they see it as their religious right to kill for land which they believe their god has given them. This mentality actually contradicts proper Judaism, as proper Judaism holds the belief that Israel is a spiritual state which will only take on a physical form with the arrival of a messiah at the end of days who will lead the people into the land. Zionism jumps the gun and suggests that Israel has a geographical reality today, undermining religion and deceiving people if not also exaggerating the numbers dead in theHolocaust to inspire compassion.Have a look into the Israeli psyche and you will not find any faithfulness to the bible of how Jews should behave, it is only used against their enemies or opponents or those who dare to challenge their abuses of human rights. Israelis preach peace but well know that according to their religion Israel is by no means allowed to make peace with most of the Arab nations as this has been forbidden by prophets of old. The implication of this is complete annihilation of the Arab world as the Biblical State of Israel includes most of her Arab neighbours; part of Syria,Jordan,Lebanon, Saudi Arabia and so on. This ancient map could be found on the back of some agarot coins which is the equal of cents in the west.Furthermore it is well-known that Israel is nothing but a police station for America in the Middle East, which is why it has its almost complete backup and continues to exist. As a past practitioner of Kabala (Jewish Mysticism), I came across a plan in which the globe was cut up into sectors for military operation. Israel fell within the 20/40 geographical window and its sectors name is Archangel Michael. The belief held by Jews is that non-Jews are not completely human because they are not chosen or obedient to the One God and this gives rise to the justification of killing in the name of State and God. This belief in the supremacy of a nation backfired in Germany in the 40's and manifested in South Africa shortly afterwards with the apartheid system and is now evident in Israel’s behaviour in Gaza and the West Bank. According to religious beliefs non-Jews are last on the existing level in this physical world as well as the meta-physical. First thereis God and the Council of God and then the Angelic creatures, then Jews and animals of all kind. After this come the satanic or demonic fallen world and last you have the goy (non-believers) i.e. non-Jews. Israelis claim to be the people chosen by God for a reason not explained by anyone but it is becoming clear that this has dark implications for the future of this planet.Should you have a closer look on the situation in the Middle East it is evident that the real war is not only for the land, nor just for Jerushaliam but a war between Darkness and Light, people who have elevated and exalted themselves above ordinary humans. Israel is a proper manifestation of this most evil of human tendencies and the West stands arms folded while which might escalate into a holocaust happens on its very doorsteps. The war in the Middle East is not against a Jewish state called Israel. The war i[...]

Retours Vers Le Futur


De retour à Paris après une dizaine d’années à l’étranger, dont les deux dernières dans le désert, le temps semble s’être étrangement accéléré ici.Le temps, cette créature magnifique qui nous échappe, nous lance un duel perpétuel.Ici, les gens se sont rendus à l’évidence que le temps les dépasse.Inutile de me demander pourquoi je suis revenu. La nécessité bien des fois nous apporte à faire des choix…de second choix.Les signaux perçus m’interpellent, moqueurs et perturbants : une personne ne s’arrête pas quand je lui demande l’heure, le climat hivernal impitoyable me menace et me dit « va t’en loin ! », un métro s’enfuit a mon arrivée sur le quai, et mon appartement pète un plomb, et plonge dans l’obscurité. Même le camembert fait des siennes, fabriqué avec des produits toxiques… Le message est clair et sarcastique : « cher Abdelmalik, bonne chance ».Mon âme aussi s’est rangée du cote des forts! Elle me disait l’autre soir de retourner immédiatement en Mauritanie. C’est très bien, elle a le droit de me proposer des initiatives ; mais je me suis souvenue peu après sa suggestion que, en Mauritanie, a maintes reprises, elle m’avait faite : revenir a Paris. Elle m’avait dit que je devait quitter ce pays désertique entre le Maroc et le Sénégal à cause de la chaleur. Et lorsque je lui ait répondu que je patienterai, elle avait même parler de la nourriture trop simple et trop difficile pour mon estomac, où encore de ma famille qui devait souffrir de mon absence. Je l’ai réprimandé, et lui ait dit de grandir un peu, car des qu’on a des difficultés tout les deux, elle me laisse toujours me débrouiller tout seul : Elle me lance des « tu vois, je t’avais dit », ou encore des « tu n’y arriveras pas, laisse tomber ». Je ne pouvais l’écouter d’avantage, et, sous les menaces, elle s’était tue pendant un temps !Paris. Ce qui m’a particulièrement attire l’intention, c’est l’incroyable pluralité ethnique des parisiens : arabes, noirs africains, asiatiques et autre gens crées avec une palette de couleurs des plus étonnantes. Ils se côtoient, de jour comme de nuit, de métro en magasin, de rue en immeuble. C’est étonnant, et très particulier a la capitale française. Je me souviens de Londres, et je ne puis parlé de cette même diversité. Certes son façonneur est le même, mais c’est à croire qu’il n’a pas utilisé la même palette de peinture pour les deux villes. Certes, Londres est pluriethnique, mais, durant mes trajets dans le underground, le métro londonien, cette multiplicité n'avait jamais été aussi frappante. Chez eux (c’est un peu chez moi aussi, pour y avoir habiter plus de 7 ans; ma mère d’ailleurs est anglaise !), il y a cependant multiplicité dans l’indifférence totale: L'anglais aurait-il un coeur remplit de tolérence? Certes, beaucoup parleraient d’une certaine hypocrisie culturelle, peut-être assez caractéristique des anglo-saxons. Cependant, là-bas, le regard que l’on pose sur l’autre est léger et spontané. Celui d’ici est lourds, analytique est plein de représailles. Leur système n’est pas aussi contraignant que le système français.Si, dans le pays de Shakespeare, les portes de opportunités sont grandes ouvertes pour les jeunes – musulmans et autres -, elles attendent, en revanche, d’être ouverte dans le pays de la déclaration des droits de l’homme.Pour finir, je dirais que l'on ne peut douter que c’est Dieu qui donne le succès. Je demande ce succès, de la vie de l’au-delà et d’ici bas, et cultive la conviction que, tous ensemble, ces portes s'ouvriront. Les français comprennent mal l’islam, car il est mal représenté. Notre génération est une génération charnière de l’histoire, et, avec une approche sage et tolérante, les français finiront par tolérer mieux cet islam qui refuse de céder a un matérialisme trop exigent pour l’homme, puisque dénudé de toute spiritualité, aspect pourtant fondamentale pour la croissance saine et productive de l’être humain.

La douceur


“Sache que la douceur est préférable, souhaitable et conseillée en toute chose, et que cela est dicte aussi bien par la loi divine que par l’intelligence. Par elle, on obtient des résultats et des bienfaits que ne sauraient produire ni la violence ni l’agressivité. La douceur est la caractéristique des sages, des miséricordieux qui sont les élus de Dieu par mi ses serviteurs. Pour décrire Son Prophète, le seigneur des êtres humains, Dieu, exalte soit-il, adit : Tu as été doux a leur égard par une miséricorde de Dieu. Si tu avais été rude et dur de cœur, ils se seraient séparés de toi (Coran 3 :159). Opte pour le pardon, ordonne le bien, écarte-toi des ignorants (7 :199) …les serviteurs du Miséricordieux, ceux qui marchent humblement sur terre et qui, quand les ignorants leur parlent, disent : « Paix ! » (25 :63)

Et le messager de Dieu, que les bénédictions et la paix de Dieu soient sur lui,a dit : « Dieu est doux et Il aime la douceur en toute chose. » Et il a dit, que les bénédictions et la paix de Dieu soient sur lui : « La douceur embellit toute chose, et lorsqu’on l’enlève, toute chose s’enlaidit. » La douceur consiste a prendre les choses avec gentillesse, facilite, gravite et réflexion.’’

(Imam al-Haddad, Livre du Savoir et de la Sagesse, ALBOURAQ, 2002, tr. Van den Broeck, p. 81

tu es ce que tu manges!


J'ai eu l'honneur de rencontrer M Salim Khan, un homeopathe, où "hakim" en arabe, qui exerce sur Leceister, GB. Ses paroles sont remarcables, et il m'a fait notemment réaliser combien l'expression en anglais "you are what you eat" (tu es ce que tu manges) est vrai!
Paraît-il qu'un corps humain régénère toutes ses cellules en 7 ans. Et oui, tous les sept ans, on aurait un nouveau corps, forcément régénérer par ce que l'on mange et boit.
Vu de cette perspective, inutile de vous cacher que je me réjouis de ne pas manger de porc ni de boire de l'alcool lol!

(image) La véritable évolution de l'homme

Sufistic tourism


I left Fez for Oujda on Saturday 19 Ramadan 1429. I took the 10.55 train with Sherif and Maryam, both from Fez. I embarked on this journey on their invitation, thinking it would be nice to visit the new Alawi zawiya of Oujda. I sat silently in the train, continuing my daily remembrance. After an hour of silence (I was really tired after a sleepless night), I asked Sherif what was the plan and who would receive us. To my surpise he replied that no one was expecting our arrival! That is something that would not have surpised me back in Mauritania, where people do not expect to be told when they will have guests, but I had the idea that in Morocco the protocol was a bit more sophisticated. Alas I had boarded the train, there was no going back!This is the only photo I took of Oujda, and to be honest, I didn't see much more than that, except the Zawiya of course!Upon our arrival, we quickly jumped in a taxi. Maryam said to the driver: "Al Hudud!", meaning the border! Indeed Oujda is only few kilometres west of the border with Algeria; and the new zawiya is on the road going to the country of Sidi Ahmed Alawi.Very fortunately - a miracle some would call it- Sidi Nabil, the muqaddam, was actually in the zawiya, as if he was waiting for us. He welcomed us and made us sit on the floor. We talked a bit inside the new place built for remembrance of God: a big room with a few pillars, a nice carpet and a few cushions around the walls. Very simple and modest, with no photos and a few dozen quran on a shelf at the back of the room, painted in white and tiled half way up the wall if I remember...We broke our fast in a random place, haha I mean I have no idea who the host was! We then came back to the zawiya and prayed Isha and night prayers.The following day, 'The Fez group' completely split up! Sherif went back to Fez, Maryam stayed, and I decided at the last minute to go to Nador to visit some friends and Sidna Buzidi. I took a bus at around midday.When I reached Nador, Si Ismail and two of his "wahhabi friends", as he sometimes called them, came to pick me up.I was initially thinking of taking a bus back to Fez the following day, or the day after at the latest. It has now been close to a week! I should be on my way back tomorrow God willing. Although the city of Nador itself lacks beautiful buildings and history, in comparison with Fez for example, the surrounding countryside is absolutely amazingly beautiful! The sea and the mountains, two amazing features of God's creation, make the location of Nador unique. Property developers and investors know it, and the place is becoming apparently really expensive! But it's ok, just take out a mortgage with one of the Moroccan banks!Throughout my time here, I have been visiting Sidna Buzidi in his zawiya, where I had the oportunity to ask him few questions, like what is the barzagh, can a shaykh tarbiyah be fully shaved, can we shake hands with a marriageable sister, or what does one have to do to see the Prophet in one's dream, and if it was possible to see him in a wakeful state? I finally asked him permission to visit the shaykhs of the past from our spiritual lineage, Moulay Abdes Salam bin Mashish, and Moulay Darqawi. Sidi Buzidi is a very humble and simple man, and you will not get much out of him, except if you are looking for someone that talks about God and sufism!I went to Melilla twice. The first time to break fast at Sidi Ahmed's, a relative of the Shaykh, with a beautiful voice mashallah! He is the second from the left in the photo beneath. The second from the right is Haaj Maymoon, a son of bilHaaj and the shaykh of the zawiya of Melilla.The first thing that struck me in Melilla was the immense wire fence all around the city! Melilla is indeed a Spanish town on Moroccan lands. This fence strangely reminded me Palestine... I felt sad for a moment, as sidi Ahmed was driving me around the cit[...]

Let me explain...


On my arrival in Morocco, I was surprised to see men shaking hands with women, as if the sharia, the scholars, the prophet, let us in complete darkness regarding this ruling.

As I was about to leave Mauritania, towards the end of July, for a vacation until the end of Ramadan, I had this feeling that challenges were ahead of me, notably with interactions with the opposite sex, and especially shaking their hands and kissing them (non-mahrams relatives).

On the very eve I left the Islamic school of Nabbaghiya, I asked my fiqh teacher, Mukhtar, about it. I wanted to hear from him that there was an opinion within the Maliki madhab, or outside it as a matter of fact, that allows it...

Shaykh Mukhtar (Shaykh Hadd Amin from Twemret also I remember...) was categorical: it is not permissible to shake the hand of a marriageable woman. I was asking him questions, to see if I could go around the ruling without doing something which the blessed divine law forbids. As I was loosing all hope of having an opinion favorable to my request, he recited the quranic verse who states that whoever fear Allah, He will make for him an exit and provide for him from where he had not imagined.

Based on the context, I understood that Allah will help me to apply this ruling with ease. Praise be to Him, it has so far... At least it was when I was in France!

As I arrived in Morocco, my belief was challenged by people who do not see it forbidden.

So I felt obliged to phone my teacher Mukhtar, for reassurance that it was indeed forbidden. I then did a little research about what scholars had to say about the issue. Here they are on my blog...

On the first entry, Imam Nawawi, people said my position was too shadid ("strong"), even though I never stated my position. I was even told that I was not qualified to translate! Maybe true...
Then when I published the opinion of Shaykhs Qaradawi and Bin Bayah, others told me I had weakened. Haha hello?? Did I stated my position. No.

All I did was publishing different texts treating the subject.

My position? Here it is: the scholars of the past have laid down the sharia, which is the sunna of the Prophet, peace be upon him, which can be found in the four sunni schools of Imam Abu Hanifah, Malik, Shafi'i et Ahmed Ibn Hanbal.
The Usuli scholars, from what I have understood, divide people into two categories: the mujtahids, and the muqallids. Anybody who hasnt got the qualifications to deliberate Islamic rulings (mujtahid), should follow and apply the most prominent opinions of the madhhab he is following.

To shake the hand of a marriageable woman is forbidden in the Maliki school of thoughts, as it is in the other 3 madhhabs.
Also I respect the fatwas of our shiyookh and think, whatever their opinions, that people should not write negative comments about their fatwas. This is adab.

Shaking hands with non-mahrams, by Abdullah bin Bayah


The Question:
“Is it allowable for me and women [who are eligible to marry] to shake hands sometimes?”

The Answer:
“The origin [of this ruling] is that a man is not allowed to shake hands with a woman [who he is eligible to marry and vice versa]. However, if she is an elderly woman then the school of Abi Hanifa [may Allah have mercy upon him] considered shaking hands with her permissible. Perhaps, the questioner will state that, “By not shaking a woman’s hand it could lead to hardship or shared ill feelings and so forth?” If not shaking hands will lead to the actuality of those fears, then it is allowable to shake hands as long as there is no evil feelings or affection for the woman [and vice versa]. And if the opposite holds true, then it is not allowed to do so.
Dr. Abdullah bin Bayyah
* Note, there was some abridgment done to this answer to make it clearer to the English audience. However, the meaning and answer of Dr. Bin Bayyah was not changed.


Shaykh Yusuf al-Qaradawi on shaking hand with women


Firstly, shaking hands between males and females who are not mahrams is only permissible when there is no desire or fear of fitnah. But if there is fear of fitnah, desire, or enjoyment, then handshaking is no doubt haram (unlawful). In contrast, if either of these two conditions (that there is no desire or fear of fitnah) is lacking between a male and any of his female mahrams, such as his aunt or foster sister or the like, then handshaking will be haram (although it is originally permissible).
Secondly, handshaking between males and females who are not mahrams should be restricted to necessary situations such as between relatives or those whose relationships are established by marriage. It is preferable not to expand the field of permissibility in order to block the means to evil and to be far away from doubt and to take the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) as a model when there is no proof that he shook hands with a non-mahram woman. Also, it is preferable for the pious Muslim, male or female, not to stretch out his/her hand to shake the hand of anyone of the opposite sex who is not mahram. But if he/she is put in a situation that someone stretches out his/her hand to shake hands with him/her, then he/she can do that.
I have tried to clarify the detailed ruling of the issue here in order to inform those who are in the dark about it how to behave while sticking to the tenets of their religion. Also, when the detailed Islamic ruling is explained and people are fully aware of it, there will be no room for personal justifications that are not supported by legal backing.

Read the full fatwa on:

Shaykh 'Abd al-Wakil Durubi on shaking hands with women


Shaykh ‘Abd al-Wakil Durubi, Imam of the Mosque of Darwish Pasha, Damascus, Syria, says: “Ordinary people sometimes mistakenly assume that the Hanafi position that touching a woman do not nullify ablution (wudu) means they [Hanafi scholars] permit men shaking hands with women who are not wives or unmarriageable relatives, something which is unlawful, and which neither the Hanafi school nor any other holds to be permissible.

(Ibn Naqib al-Misri, Ahmed, “Reliance of the Traveller”, trsl. Keller, Nuh Ha Mim, Amana publications, Beltsville, Maryland U.S.A, 1994, pp. 513)

Imam Nawawi on shaking hand with beautiful people, with the commentary of shaykh Ibn 'Allan


“I [Imam Nawawi] say: it is necessary to be wary of shaking hand with a handsome beardless person. Looking at this person is forbidden (we have already mentioned this in the chapter before this one), and our companions have said that everything that is forbidden to look at, touching it is [also] forbidden; more to the point, touching [it] is worse. Looking at a woman, if one wants to marry her, is however allowed. As for buying and selling and taking and giving, to touch a person is not allowed in any of those instances, and God knows best.”

Shaykh Ibn ‘Allan, commenting on the above:
“The Shaykh [Nawawi] branched off the forbiddance of touching what is forbidden to look at, as he states, and uses as a basis [for his judgement]. As for the opinion that [looking at a beautiful person’s face] is allowed, the Shaykh kept silent. In At-Tuhfah [“The Gift”] of Ibn Hajr, [he says that] some [scholars] have asserted that it is forbidden to touch a handsome person even so looking at her is allowed. Thus, an unmarriageable [male relative] of a woman cannot touch that woman whatsoever […]. However, if we profess the relied upon opinion [in the Shafi’i school] about the permissibility of touching the head, or something else outside the private parts, of an unmarriageable relative – as the author has transmitted the consensus upon in his commentary of Muslim [Hadith collection] – as long as there is no desire and no temptation, whether out of necessity or affection, it is necessary to mention those particularisations for handsome people.

(Ibn ‘Allan, Muhammad ‘Ali bin Muhammad, “Al-Futuhat Al-Rabbaniya ‘ala Al-Adhkar Al-Nawawiya”, Dar Al-Kutub AL-Ilmiyah, Beirut, 2004, Vol V, pp. 261-262)

Saints of Morroco


Anybody who would like to pay a visit to one of the saints buried in Northern Morroco should read the last entry of sidi Khalid's blog



Shaykh Abul Hassan, in his commentary of the Rissalah of Ibn Abi Zaid, in red, in the chapter of Jihad, wrote:

"(And the protection [to a non-Muslim] from the lowest of the Muslims is permissible) [and the lowest of the Muslims] is the miserable man, who, if he is absent, is not awaited for; and if he is present, is not consulted, ([and have to be respected] by the rest of the Muslims), even more so the protection of the noble person; and this [protection] is for a definite number of people, and as to the people of a whole region or a country, protection cannot be granted except by the ruler (sultan); if it is granted by another person than him, he can cancel it if he wishes so.

Note: It is said in “The Jawahir”: The condition for the [granting of] protection is that it does not harm the Muslims, so if a spy or one who is harming the Muslims is granted protection, it cannot be observed.

Protection is made effective with a clear enunciation or [even] by an indirect declaration, or an understandable indication. (And so it is for that of a woman) her protection is permissible (and a boy) like her, it is permissible (if he understand [what is] the protection), namely, if he knows that to violate the protection is forbidden and entails punishment, and its fulfilment is rewarded […]

Sidi Muhammad Ibn Suleyman al-Jazuli


"Ahmed Baba and al-Fasi and others mentioned in “al-Mir’ah” that when they carried [Imam al-Jazuli, author of “Dala’il ul-Khayrat”] to Marrakesh – and the one carrying him was the Sultan Abul Abbas Ahmed known as al-‘A’raj, and that was 77 years after his death (he had been buried in al-Jazulah), they find him not to have changed at all; and the earth did not ate his body, to the point that the trace of shavings from his hair on his head and his beard were still visible as if it had been the day of his death. Some of them put a finger on his face and the blood became concentrated in the spot where the finger were; and if the finger was lifted, the blood was returning as it occurs for the living."

(Al-Talidi, Shaikh Abd Allah Ibn Abd al-Qadir, “Al-Mutrib bi Mashahiri Awliyail Maghreb”, Dar al-Aman, 2003, pp. 146)

Sidi Ahmed Zaruq makes funny marriage scenario!


Muslim jurists sometimes come up with funny examples to illustrate the issues they are treating!
What follow was taken from Sidi Ahmed Zarruq’s commentary of The Rissalat of Ibn Abi Zaid al-Qayrawani, a book of jurisprudence of the Maliki school of thoughts, one of the four Orthodox schools of Islamic law.

Imam Ibn Abi Zaid – May Allah be pleased with Him - says:
“And [it is permissible] for him (i.e., a man) to marry the daughter of his father’s woman [that she had] from another man, and [it is similarly permissible] for a woman to marry the son her father’s wife [she had] from another man.”

Sidi Ahmed Zarruq – May Allah be pleased with him and make us benefit from his books and his spiritual legacy – says, commenting on the above sentence:
“Meaning, [it is permissible] because each one of them is a foreigner to the other (i.e., not blood related); then, if a child is born after that from the father with the mother, he [the new born baby] would be the brother of them both [the two non-blood related who can marry], thus saying: “My brother married my sister!” […]

Our beloved imam of the two sciences, inward (tasawwuf) and outward (shariia), has also the talent to make his readers smile mashallah! May Allah rewards him!

Mosque building project in Nabbaghiyya


The Prophet (P.B.U.H.) said: "Who builds a Mosque for God (S.W.T.), even if it was as small as a birds nest, God would then reward him by building him a house in heaven".

Is there any Mosque that small? The answer is of course not. But the meaning is that if you participated in building a Mosque, even for a couple of pounds, God would then build you a house in heaven. See how God, with His mercy, did not leave this reward open just for rich people! The reward can be achieved by poor people as well. This is by participating in good deeds as much as they can! And God blesses their participation; He is the Bounteous and Generous.

Please donate generously for this mosque project! Find all the detail on

The Path


Sidi Buzidi, Shaykh of the Shadhili-Darqawi-Alawi tariqa in MoroccoLast December, as I was about to jump on my train to Marrakesh from his local train station near Rabat, my friend Khalid said: "And try to write an article on your blog about your meeting with Shaikhna". I replied: "Inshallah", as my train was departing.As I sat near the window in a second class compartment, I felt glad to be alone. I was realising that almost a year in the depth of the Saharan desert in Mauritania left me quite unsociable. Those few days among the sufis of Morocco was rather challenging for my ego... But after all, wasn't I looking to master this ego??My time in Mauritania, seeking knowledge, raised to me some questions. Where the truth lies? What is the correct path? What is the fastest and easiest and most righteous way to get nearer to our Creator?Is it through the study and memorisation of texts of jurisprudence? Or is through the company of a sufi Shaykh? Or is through following our natural intuitions and find a way of its own? After all, didn't Imam Ghazali was travelling his own path without a tariqah? I was confused...Confusion started essentialy because Allah showed me how deceptive jurisprudence can be. How can it be that someone who has memorised all the texts of the Maliki school of thought and still does not make Iqamah before his prayer? How can someone knows by heart the conditions to make permissible tayammum, yet do it without fulfilling those very conditions?I noticed my deen was not complete. I needed something more... Could it be tassawuf? Could it be that I was in need of entering a sufi order in order to approach further The Almighty?I remembered Shaykh Idriss, a British convert who studied 8 years in Fez, explaining me last August a basic point about those two different aspects of our deen, fiqh and tasawwuf. As we were drinking coffee on the terrace of a cafe in the new city of Fez, he told me: "fiqh is tadqiq and tahqiq (exactitude and verification), while tasawwuf is taslim (submission". Our discussion really had an impact on me, and when I got back to Twemret, it was never the same again. Ramadan was few days away; I was alone in the desert, with a big problem to solve in my hands: what should I do?? I was in the midst of a spiritual crises, with no one to seek help from; the vastness of the desert closed up on me to the point I felt I could not breath anymore!At the time I was reading Ibn Ashor to Shaykh Hadd Amin. Towards the end of Ramadan, I reached the last chapter of this text, a concise counselling and explanation of the purposes and conditions of Tasawwuf. The text in itself is very basic, but the commentary written by Shaykh al-Mayyarah is very detailed and full of wisdom. A striking element of his commentary was when he said that the practice of sufism is a duty upon every Muslim. My decision was made. Although the practice of tasawwuf do not necessarily implies taking a shaykh, I felt it was the right time for me to do so, except that I was stuck in Mauritania for the next two months because of the studies!Those two months were long. I knew I needed to see Sidi al-Buzidi Bujafri in the North of Morocco.My meeting with him happened early Decembre 2007. In his zawiya near Melilla, Morocco. I went with my Khalid and the muqaddam of Oujda. We sat down. The Shaykh was not there yet. Food was served to us: lamb tagine! I love it! As I was having fun eating the excellent food, Sidi Buzidi walked in from behind my back. I saw on the face of Nabil, the muqaddam, and Khalid, that the Shaykh was behind my back. He moved his han[...]

I remember...


I remember few years ago I was having lunch in the garden with my family. Islam was on the table again, can't remember why...

I was telling them (May God guide them), that for every mosque they'll see around the world, at least one person in it knows the complete Quran by heart...

I remember my father in law was amazed! He could not believe it!

It's all good


The reward and advantages for having memorised Quran are uncountable. What we do not realise is the memorising process in which children of the umma have to go through…And it could go without saying, in traditional countries, like Mauritania, children get beaten up. It is part of the learning process. For them, it's like that, no other way...I realised that quite early into my stay in Mauritania. And let me tell you, when they get beaten up, it is real!The question that could be raise is, is that beating legal under Islamic law? I do not hold the definite answer, and I suppose there are differences of opinions among the scholars in that matter.However, from what I have gathered, I’d say no.Ibn Abi Zaid Al-Qayrawani in his famous book of Maliki jurisprudence, Al-Rissalat, says that a child should be beaten up (it is mandoob, not wajib!) if he refuses to pray at the age of 10. This ruling has come from a hadith of the prophet, Peace and Blessing be upon him, that said: “Order your children to pray at the age of 7 and beat them for it at the age of 10”. (Narrated by Abu Dawud, An-Nissai and Tirmidhi who said of it hassan sahih). However even amongst the scholars of the Maliki madhab, we have for example Ibn Nafi’i, a student of Imam Malik I think, who forbid this beating on the ground that it is oppression since nothing is obligatory upon them (Sharh Rissalat of Sidi Ahmed Zarruq). The beaten should be light, no crying involved.This is for prayer. It is arguably the only legal reason to beat a child.However, I would like to bring here two important points. On one side, you have the nicest, most spiritual and easy going Mauritnians, that beat children. Once, in Twemret, I thought of a brother: “That person would never beat a child”. Few days later I saw him beating the ache up his little brother for not memorising fast enough.And on the other side, the children are totally submitting to this beating and find it absolutely normal. I was once with a guy in Twemret memorising in the rocks, when he started to beat his little brother so hard I became heart broken and left the 13 year old kid crying out loud. When I saw the kid again, he told me I should not have left just because his brother was beating him up. I thought: “O yeh of course!”Since that episode, I try to hold back my feelings and think nothing of it.I now live in Nabbaghiya, in a room inside the Quranic school. A bunch of children come every morning from 5.30 to 8.30 and every evening from 5 to 7. Their numbers vary from only a few individuals to up to 30, all between the age of 7 to 13. And they get beaten up. No joke.Their teacher, Sayyd, is really nice and soft mashallah. He is a close student of Shaykh Bah. You would not picture him beating children. But he does. Here it is a cultural thing, nothing big, like nowadays in the West, were hitting a child, even your own, is forbidden under law!From time to time, when a kid feel his “time” is near. He just gets up and runs as fast as possible to the door and then run away in the village, usually with the Quran still in his hand.The photo I posted just above is such an event. The small kid in the middle ran away with a red Quran in his hand. He tried to run as fast as possible on the sand, but the Quran in his hands slowed him downed considerably. The teacher sent two other students to catch him and bring him back, which they did with great pleasure. The kid on the right is actually the runner’s cousin.I make it sounds horrible, although this particular even[...]

"Loving the Beloved of Allah", Sheikh Muhammad al-Yaqubi


Shaykh Muhammad al-YaqoubiHis biography :He is one of the leading scholars of Islam in the world whose words have transformed the lives of thousands of people. He is a charismatic public speaker in both Arabic and English; and studied seven languages. He is a descendant of the Prophet PBUH, from a family of scholars which have taught the Sacred Knowledge for centuries. Three of his ancestors were Imams in the Grand Omayyad Masjid in Damascus, including his father, the great erudite scholar and master of both shari’a and tasawwuf, the late shaykh Ibrahim al-Yaqoubi. Shaykh Muhammad was born in Damascus in 1382, accompanied his father until he died in 1406. He was his servant, his disciple and his student. His father trained him in the Sufi path and gave him and qualified as a murshid. He studied under him the major works of the Sacred Knowledge, memorized many texts and didactic poems. His father gave him several ijazas. He also received several other Ijazas from the top scholars of Syria such as: the Hanafite Mufti of Syria Shaykh Muhammad Abul-Yusr ‘Abideen; the Malikite Mufti of Syria, Sayyid Makki al-Kittan; Shaykh Ali al-Boudaylimi of Tlemsan; Sh. Saalih al-Khateeb; and Shaykh Abdul ‘Aziz ‘Uyoon al-Sood. He made his debut as Friday speaker at the age of 14, was appointed as Friday Imam and speaker at the age of 17 and as a teacher of the Sacred Knowledge at the age of 20. Since then, he has been teaching the sciences of the shari’a such as ‘Aqeeda, tafsir, Hadith, fiqh, usool, grammar, etc. to students of all levels. He taught Tafsir al-Nasafi, Sahih al-Bukhari five times, Sahih Muslim, al-Muwatta six times, al-Shama’il of al-Tirmidhi 17 times, Sharh al-Fiqh al-Akbar, al-Tahawiyya over twenty times, Sharh al-‘Aqaa’id al-Nasafiyyah, Ihya ‘Uloom al-Din, al-Hikam of Ibn ‘Atta’illah, al-Shifa of Qadi ‘Iyaad, al-Qudouri, al-Hidayah, Maqaamt al-Hariri, Mughni al-Labeeb and many other books. Shaykh Muhammad is an authority of hadith; his isnads i.e. chains of transmission, are of the highest amongst scholars of our time. Students and scholars visit him in Syria or when he travels to hear the masalsalaat and take ijaza in narration of hadith. Between 1992-2001, He worked in Kuwait, Sweden, and USA; and travelled across the world teaching the sacred knowledge and calling people to Allah. He toured many countries in North America and Europe, the Far East and the Arab World. Over a thousand people took shahada at his hands; and many repented after listening to him. He resides now in Damascus and teaches in the masjid of sh. Muhyiddeen Ibn ‘Arabi, and in his home; while several of his students are spreading the sacred knowledge and reviving the way of Ulema around the world.Lecture entitled: “Loving the Beloved of Allah”As some of you may know, our blessed teacher and spiritual guide gave a talk about the beloved of Allah, may the peace and blessing of Allah be upon him (pbuh), on Thursday 31 January in Kensington Town Hall .The Shaykh, upon his entering, asked everyone to stay seated. He discreetly went to seat on the front row, only to be asked by the organiser to sat on the stage.After a praising and introducing him, Adil, a chemistry student at Imperial College, asked the sheykh to address the audience…Sheykh Muhammad got up, walked towards the pulpit, put his walking stick on his left, and wonders started coming out of his mouth…What follows is what a remember from what he said; I ask Allah forgiveness for any inaccuracy, and[...]



I wrote I have been living for a year in the UK, it's wrong... I have been living 10 years in the Uk

So you want to work it out?


It's funny how my mind is proper messed up! Well I say it's funny, but it's not!! I have been living in the UK for over a year now, thus as time went by I became "Englishized". I started this blog with the intention to write articles in English with French translations... I realised it would take me up too much time, so I opt for the language of Shakespear... But then when I went to France recently, I stood up again for my French heritage, and switch to the tongue of Voltaire...Hahaha, and guess what? I came back to England, and forgot about those poor French people eager to read my blog (now I am joking)!To proceed; yeh the scholars, mashallah, may God rewards them. Humanity, the muslims, are in dire need to listen to them. Because ut's them who are on the truth.Few month ago, back in Mauritania, I was reading an explanation of Nawawi's compilation of 40 hadiths by Ibn Daqiq. The hadith is as follow:While we were one day sitting with the Messenger of Allah, sallallahu 'alayhi wasallam ["peace be upon him"], there appeared before us a man dressed in extremely white clothes and with very black hair. No traces of journeying were visible on him, and none of us knew him.He sat down close by the Prophet, sallallahu 'alayhi wasallam, rested his knee against his thighs, and said, "O Muhammad! Inform me about Islam." Said the Messenger of Allah, sallallahu 'alayhi wasallam, "Islam is that you should testify that there is no deity save Allah and that Muhammad is His Messenger, that you should perform salah (prayer), pay the zakah (alms giving), fast during Ramadan, and perform pilgrimage to the House [i.e., the Ka'ba], if you can find a way to it (or find the means for making the journey to it)." Said he (the man), "You have spoken truly."We were astonished at his thus questioning him and telling him that he was right, but he went on to say, "Inform me about Emaan (faith)." He (the Messenger of Allah) answered, "It is that you believe in Allah and His angels and His Books and His Messengers and in the Last Day, and in fate (qadar), both in its good and in its evil aspects." He said, "You have spoken truly."Then he (the man) said, "Inform me about Ihsan." He (the Messenger of Allah) answered, "It is that you should serve Allah as though you could see Him, for though you cannot see Him yet He sees you." He said, "Inform me about the Hour." He (the Messenger of Allah) said, "The one questioned knows no more than the questioner." So he said, "Well, inform me about the signs thereof (i.e. of its coming)." Said he, "They are that the slave-girl will give birth to her mistress, that you will see the barefooted ones, the naked, the destitute, the herdsmen of the sheep (competing with each other) in raising lofty buildings." Thereupon the man went off.I waited a while, and then he (the Messenger of Allah) said, "O 'Umar, do you know who that questioner was?" I replied, "Allah and His Messenger know better." He said, "That was Jibril. He came to teach you your religion."This hadith is very famous. it succintly represents the teaching of Islam, vertically and horizontally. What is referred to in this hadith as Islam coulb be translated in practical term as fiqh, or jurisprudence. Of course in order to perform a prayer, you need to know what it is, how it is performed, what cancels it, and so on... Islam requires knowledge, thus you have the prophet sws who is reported to have said that seeking knowledge is a duty to all mus[...]

La France


Hier, il s’est passé un truc bizarre. Comme une espèce de prise de conscience que j’étais français. Pas du tout une crise d’identité ; non, juste une prise de conscience. Leo, enfin Abdelmalik, est français ; et fier de l’être ? Certes pas de maniere absolue, mais bon je suis ce que je suis, français.Tout a commencé quand hier je suis allé manger chez un gars très bien de Poissy, Rachid, un Marocain qui est né et qui a grandit en France. On avait fait connaissance après qu’il soit tombé sur mon blog.Chez lui, on a parlé de l’islam en France, que je connais tres peu : Je me suis converti en Angleterre et mon islam s’est developé là-bas, où je me suis carrément epanoui, grace à un islam et une communaute tres pluri-ethnique, tolerante et bien organisée.J’etais a l’université, en septembre 2004, quand j’ai commence à prier et à frequenter une mosqué appelée Leeds Grand Mosque ( L’imam de la mosqué, un Libien, est tombe amoureux de moi et m'a tout de suite prit sous son aile ; j’ai répondu a ses avances (un amour fraternelle… calmez-vous), et j’ai pris confiance, et mon islam a fleuri. L’environnement etait propice : pas mal de convertis anglais, meme un francais, Ben, un type vraiment drole.Leeds Grand Mosque est frequentée par des arabes (Egyptiens, algériens, lybiens, tunisiens, et les pays de la peninsule arabe), des pakistaniais, des indiens, des bengalis, et pas mal d’étudiants de la fac de Leeds.En bref je ne me sentais pas du tout différent, puisque tout le monde était différent… de tout le monde !Et puis, en Angleterre, il y a aussi les shaykhs américains et anglais qui font des conférences trop bien: Shaykh Abdel Aziz Fredricks, shaykh Saad Attas ( , shaykh Jihad Brown, Shaykh Nuh Ha Mim Keller ( , Imam Zaid Shakir ( , Abdul Hakim Murad ( et bien sur ce génie de Hamza Yusuf ( Ses reunions donnet bien sur l'occasion aux jeunes de se retrouver, de faire de nouvelles connaissances, et d'arreter d'etre une proie facile pour le shaytan.Et puis il y a les Shaykhs arabes, qui visitent l’Angleterre assez souvent, comme Habib Ali Jifri ( , Shaykh Mohammed Yaqubi ( et bien d’autres encore.Quand un de ces savants viennent, c’est une fète pour nous : on s’habille bien, on sent bon ; et la mosqué qui organise l’évènement offre un repas a tout le monde (quelques centaines de personnes...), qu’on mange assit par terre, avec les mains (comme au bled!). En general c’est de la bouffe indienne, super bon.Les mosqués, parlons-en. Une mosqué, c’est le centre de la vie du musulman; il y prie, mais aussi il y etudie, et puis il y fait des rencontres…En Angleterre les mosqués sont quatre etoiles ! Moquettes epaisses, chauffage central, salle d’eau tu te croirais a Aqua Park, équipement sono du style Bose, la classe quoi. Et puis du dehors, une mosqué en Angleterre, ca ressemble a une mosqué, avec dome et minaret etc…Les shaykhs que j'ai vu en Angleterre (notemment Habib Ali), quand je les ai revu en France, j’ai vraiment eu un choque ; le manq[...]