Monthly Archives: March 2008
The Outlawz was an American rap group from Essex County, New Jersey, founded by Tupac Shakur in late 1995 after his release from prison.
We see them all the time, practically every single day. I even saw some walking to class this morning. Most people stop, look for a little, and are shocked at what they see. The scary thing is that most people wish it was a lot more common and could see even more. A lot of Muslims would say that this is more common in ultra liberal societies in the “West”, but I would argue that it is just as prevalent in the “Muslim world”.
You know exactly what I’m talking about….tall and fancy buildings, I mean really tall and fancy buildings being constructed all over the place. Normally when people see these structures they are really impressed, as am I when I initially see them. However, I get a sense of fear any time I see something like that. It reminds me that the Day of Judgment is very near and that we are unmindful of the reality we are living in. Recently I got an email from my cousin in which it had several pictures and descriptions of the AMAZING continuous growth in Dubai in a matter of a few years. The growing influence and global power that Dubai has been gaining is astonishing. It’s becoming a leader in the corporate world, medical research, and obviously tourism. I would have to say I am thoroughly impressed and definitely want to visit, and maybe even live in Dubai. At the same time, Allahualum, when I saw them I honestly thought that what we are currently seeing in Dubai was specifically foretold by the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) as a sign of the Day of Judgement.
It’s important to note that I feel that progress is important and that I am not against building out of necessity or even comfort. Although it is a sign of the Day of Judgment, it isn’t a prohibition.
Hadith of Jibril:
Dubai in 1990 prior to the craziness
The same street in 2003
The madness. Dubai is said to have 15%-25% of the world’s cranes
The Dubai Waterfront. When completed it will become the largest waterfront development in the world.
All of this was built in the last 5 years, including that island that looks like a palm tree.
The Palm Islands in Dubai . New Dutch dredging technology was used to create these massive man made islands. They are the largest artificial islands in the world and can be seen from space. Three of these Palms will be made with the last one being the largest of them all.
Upon completion, the resort will have 2,000 villas, 40 luxury hotels, shopping centers, movie theaters, and many other facilities. It is expected to support a population of approximately 500,000 people. It is advertised as being visible from the moon.
The World Islands. 300 artificially created islands in the shape of the world. Each island will have an estimated cost of $25-30 million.
The Burj al-Arab hotel in Dubai. The worlds tallest hotel. Considered the only ‘7 star’ hotel and the most luxurious hotel in the world. It stands on an artificial island in the sea.
Hydropolis, the world’s first underwater hotel. Entirely built in Germany and then assembled in Dubai, it is scheduled to be completed by 2009 after many delays.
The Burj Dubai. Construction began in 2005 and is expected to be complete by 2008. At an estimated height of over 800 meters, it will easily be world’s tallest building when finished. It will be almost 40% taller than the the current tallest building, the Yaipei 101.
This is what downtown Dubai will look like around 2008-2009. More than 140 stories of the Burj Dubai have already been completed. It is already the worlds tallest man made structure and it is still not scheduled to be completed for at least another year.
The Al Burj. This will be the centerpiece of the Dubai Waterfront. Once completed it will take over the title of the tallest structure in the world from the Burj Dubai.
Recently it was announced that the final height of this tower will be 1200 meters. That would make it more than 30% taller than the Burj Dubai and three times as tall as the Empire State Building.
The Burj al Alam, or The World Tower . Upon completion it will rank as the world’s highest hotel. It is expected to be finished by 2009. At 480 meters it will only be 28 meters shorter than theTaipei 101. The Trump International Hotel & Tower, which will be the centerpiece of one of the palm islands, The Palm Jumeirah.
Dubailand. Currently, the largest amusement park collection in the world is Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando , which is also the largest single-site employer in the United states with 58,000 employees. Dubailand will be twice the size.
Dubailand will be built on 3 billion square feet (107 miles^2) at an estimated $20 billion price tag. The site will include a purported 45 mega projects and 200 hundred other smaller projects.
Currently, the Walt Disney World Resort is the #1 tourist destination in the world. Once fully completed, Dubailand will easily take over that title since it is expected to attract 200,000 visitors daily.
Dubai Sports City. A huge collection of sports arenas located in Dubailand.
The Dubai Marina is an entirely man made development that will contain over 200 highrise buildings when finished. It will be home to some of the tallest residential structures in the world. The completed first phase of the project is shown.
Most of the other high rise buildings will be finished by 2009-2010. The Dubai Mall will be the largest shopping mall in the world with over 9 million square feet of shopping and around 1000 stores. It will be completed in 2008.
Ski Dubai , which is already open, is the largest indoor skiing facility in the world. This is a rendered image of another future indoor skiing facility that is being planned.
Some of the tallest buildings in the world, such as Ocean Heights and The Princess Tower , which will be the largest residential building in the world at over a 100 stories, will line the DubaiMarina. The UAE Spaceport would be the first spaceport in the world if construction ever gets under way. The Dubai Metro system, once completed, will become the largest fully automated rail system in the world. The Dubai World Central International Airport will become the largest airport in size when it is completed. It will also eventually become the busiest airport in the world, based on passenger volume. There are more construction workers in Dubai than there are actual citizens.
In addition, I vividly recall when I performed Hajj the sights of some of the amazing buildings that have been built, and are currently under construction, around the Kaba. Before the Hajj actually began I was sitting close to the Kaba waiting for the Jummah Khutbah to begin and looked up at two massive buildings towering over the Haram Sherif. I told my close friend sitting next to me, who was also the Imam and leader of our Hajj group, to look at the buildings. He said it seems very impressive to many people, but is nothing more than a sign that the Day of Judgment is very close.
The Minor Signs:
The Major Signs:
Although they appear here in no particular order, it is important to point out that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said that these last, major signs will follow each other like pearls falling off of a necklace…
“Indeed, in this [Quran] is notification for a worshipping people. And We have not sent you, [O Muhammad], except as a mercy to the worlds.” [Quran: 21:106-107]
Allaah’s Messenger was the kindest of men in the same way as he excelled all others in courage and valour. Being extremely kind-hearted, his eyes brimmed with tears at the slightest sign of inhumanity. A Companion, Shaddaad bin ‘Aws reported the Apostle as saying: “Allaah has commanded you to show kindness to everyone, so if you have to kill, kill in a good manner, and if you slaughter an animal, slaughter it gently. If anyone of you has to slay an animal, he should sharpen the blade first and treat the animal well.” Ibn ‘Abbaas relates that a man threw a goat on its side and then started sharpening his knife. When the Prophet saw him he said: “Do you want to kill it twice? Why did you not sharpen the knife before throwing it on the ground?”
A Mercy for the Believers
The Messenger’s compassion towards the believers was of the utmost degree. The Quran describes his compassion in the following verse, which means: “There has certainly come to you a Messenger from among yourselves. Grievous to him is what you suffer; [he is] concerned over you [i.e., your guidance] and to the believers is kind and merciful.” [Quran: 9:128]
Sa‘d bin ‘Ubaadah once became ill, so Allaah’s Messenger visited him in his house. On seeing his faithful Companion in a pitiful state, he was moved to tears. Then, he said: “Allaah does not punish because of tears, nor because of grief, but he punishes because of this.”- and he pointed to his tongue. [Al-Bukhaari]
A Mercy Towards his Enemies
The prisoners of war taken captive at the battle of Badr were amongst his bitterest enemies. Nevertheless, he made sure that they were given the best of treatment. Among them was Suhayl bin ‘Amr who was a fiery speaker and was denouncing the Prophet . ‘Umar one the Prophet’s closest companions, suggested that two of his lower teeth be pulled out so that he might not be so vile in his speeches. The Prophet replied: “Were I to do this, Allaah would disfigure me on the Day of Judgement, despite the fact that I am His messenger.”
In Makkah, his people inflicted him with every kind of suffering, eventually forcing him to emigrate to Madeenah, and then waged war on him for five years. However, when he conquered Makkah without bloodshed in the twenty-first year of his Prophethood, he asked the Makkan unbelievers who were awaiting his decision about them: “How do you expect me to treat you?” They responded unanimously: “You are a noble one, the son of a noble one.” He announced to them his decision:
“You may go free! No reproach this day shall be on you; may God forgive you.”
A Mercy for Women
Prophet Muhammad was also very kind and affectionate towards women. Women were very badly treated in those times. The Noble Prophet gave them honour and dignity at par with men in the community. ‘Umar reported: “We did not have much regard for women while we were at Makkah, but they were better treated in Madeenah. Allaah’s Messenger established women’s rights through his sayings and commandments, which improved their position and status.”
A Mercy for Children
Allaah’s Messenger was particularly compassionate towards children. When he saw a child crying, he sat beside him or her and shared his or her feelings. He felt the pain of a mother for her child more than the mother herself. Once he said: “I stand in prayer and wish to prolong it. However, I hear the cry of a child and cut the prayer short for the anxiety which the mother is feeling.” [Al-Bukhaari]
He would take children in his arms and embrace them. He was once hugging his beloved grandsons, Hasan and Husayn, when Aqrah bin Haabis told him, ‘I have got ten children. So far, I have not kissed any of them.’ Allaah’s Messenger responded: “The one with no pity for others is not pitied.” [Al-Bukhaari and Muslim]
According to another version, he said: “What can I do for you if Allaah has removed from you the feeling of compassion?” [At-Tirmithi]
A Mercy for Slaves
The Prophet strongly enjoined the duty of kind and generous treatment upon slaves, servants and labourers engaged in manual work. Jaabir related the Apostle of Allaah as saying: “Feed them with the food which you eat, clothe them with such clothing as you wear, and do not cause trouble to Allaah’s creatures.” The Apostle is further stated to have said: “Those whom Allaah has made your dependents are your brothers, servants and helpmates. Anybody whose brother has been made subservient to him ought to feed him with the food he eats and clothe him with the clothes he wears; command him not to do that which he is unable to do and if it becomes necessary to do so then he should help him in doing the job.”
A Mercy for Animals
His compassion encompassed not only human beings, but also animals.
The Prophet forbade his companions to keep the unintelligent creatures hungry or thirsty, to disturb or to overburden them. He commended that kindness and putting them at ease were meritorious acts tending to bring man nearer to Allaah. Abu Hurayrah reports the Prophet as saying: “A traveller who was thirsty saw a well in the way. He got inside the well and when he came out he saw a dog licking mud due to thirst. The man realised that the dog was as thirsty as him, so he got into the well again, filled his leather sock with water and carried it out holding it with his teeth. Thus, he quenched the thirst of the dog. Allaah was pleased with this act of kindness and pardoned his sins.” The Companions asked: “O Messenger of Allaah, is there recompense in the matter of beasts and wild animals also?” The Prophet replied: “There is recompense in regard to every creature that has a living heart.”
‘Abdullaah bin ‘Umar related that the Prophet said: “A woman was cast away to hell only because she had withheld food and water from her cat and refused to set it free so that the cat might satisfy its hunger by eating worms and insects.”
Once on return from a military campaign, a few Companions took away the chicks of a bird from their nest to stroke them. The mother bird came back and when it could not find its chicks in the nest, it began to fly around screeching. When informed of the matter, Allaah’s Messenger became angry and ordered the chicks to be put back in the nest. [Abu Daawood]
The love and compassion of Allaah’s Messenger for all kinds of creatures was not of the kind claimed by today’s ‘humanists’. He was sincere and balanced in his love and compassion. He was more compassionate than any other person. He was a Prophet raised by Allaah, the Creator and Sustainer of all beings, for the guidance and happiness of conscious beings – mankind and jinn – and the harmony of existence. Therefore, he lived not for himself but for others; he is a mercy for all the worlds.