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The Art of Deduction​

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Last Updated on Thursday, 12 September 2019 15:40

On the surface, all they saw was a footprint. However, to the trained eye, it represented far more. The tracker squatted next to the footprint and began his deductions, “This is the spoor (trail) of a kudu. These prints are quite fresh – not even two hours old. It will be at least three years old and its front right leg is injured.”

What seemed to be ‘magic’ was actually the art of deduction. Scrutinizing the depth of the footprints and hardness and moisture of the soil, the distance between the prints, the size of the prints and other similar factors, the tracker was able to deduce the information that he required.

Likewise, an archaeologist finds a fossilized animal skull. While the layman sees nothing more than a lump of bone, the archaeologist employs his skills of deduction and extracts the information that he seeks. The age of the animal, its diet, intelligence, etc., are all pieces of information that he is able to accurately deduce.

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After-Life Coach​

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Last Updated on Thursday, 22 August 2019 10:39

From kids in junior school to senior executives in multinational corporate companies – almost every person is urged and encouraged to get a life coach. With people paying anything from R250 p/hour to R1000 p/hour and more, one may well ask, “What’s the deal with a life coach?”

A life coach is a person who ‘coaches’ their clients to progress in life. First, the coach helps the client to identify the goals that he wishes to achieve. Thereafter, the coach will help him to identify the obstacles that stand between him and achieving his goals. Finally, the coach will assist him to work out a way to overcome those obstacles, will remain in regular contact with him to monitor his progress and offer additional advice and support, and will continue to motivate and encourage him.

Hence, it can aptly be said that a life coach gives a person direction in life. However, the direction is always aimed at fulfilling the wants and desires of the client, such as being more productive in the workplace, losing weight, building confidence, etc. In essence, a life coach focuses on the goals in this life.

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Have a Heart!​

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Last Updated on Thursday, 01 August 2019 10:18

Imagine, for a moment, that there is a refugee camp with a few thousand people seeking shelter and safety. These people are living hand to mouth and are struggling to provide for themselves and their families. Now, a person goes to the very edge of the camp, lights a fire and begins to braai some meat. Then, while thousands of hungry eyes are trained on him – eyes of people who have not eaten meat in weeks – he enjoys and relishes his meal. In doing so, he is completely oblivious to the pain and misery he has brought to all these people who can smell and see his food, yet cannot savour even a single morsel.

If we had to see this inconsiderate person, what would we say to him? HAVE A HEART! If you cannot share, then at least avoid flaunting what you have before those who are less fortunate!

While this example may seem farfetched, there is another example far closer to home – IN our own homes in fact – that of our domestic staff and workers.

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Spend! Spend! Spend!​

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Last Updated on Thursday, 11 July 2019 15:30

The world, at present, is progressing more rapidly than ever before. What is hailed as the breakthrough of today is already obsolete and ‘old news’ by tomorrow. If a person buys the latest phone, it is replaced by a newer model in just a few months. Likewise, if a woman buys the latest style of cloak, shoe or handbag, a new style is released soon thereafter. If we eat the latest dish in the latest restaurant today, a new dish or restaurant will enter the scene in a few weeks’ time. In essence, people find themselves racing to keep up with the changes so that they can remain relevant and up to date with the latest trends.

Naturally, this lifestyle is finance intensive, and if the husband’s salary is insufficient to service the material aspirations of the couple, the wife seeks to supplement the income by also earning a livelihood. However, the sole motivation behind this elaborate initiative is to raise the standard of living, and this is in stark contrast to the mindset and values of the Sahaabah (radhiyallahu ‘anhum).

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The Sleeping Partner​

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Last Updated on Thursday, 20 June 2019 09:33

Contrary to the impression suggested by the term, being a ‘sleeping partner’ does not involve snoring and slumber. However, being a sleeping partner is actually a ‘dream’ job.

In essence, a sleeping partner is a person who is a partner in an enterprise, yet has no involvement in the running of the enterprise. In other words, in exchange of his initial capital contribution, he gets to share in the profits without sharing in any of the work! So long as the enterprise continues to operate, he continues to benefit – without as much as lifting a finger.

Since being a sleeping partner in a highly-profitable enterprise is appealing, many people look for ventures in which they can make a once-off investment of capital and thereafter reap effort-free returns. However, when the concept of a sleeping partner works so well in the dunya, then why do we not apply the same concept in our Deen? In fact, it is far easier to set up an ‘investment portfolio’ of this nature in Deen than it is for the dunya, as the options are far more in Deen and generally, the capital is affordable to one and all.

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