Moulana Ismail Bayat (hafizahullah) is an ustaaz of Madrasah Ta’leemuddeen, Isipingo Beach and the head of the Jamiatul ‘Ulama (KZN) Ta’limi Board. Hereunder is an article that he wrote on the loss of his respected wife.
اَللّٰهُمَّ لَكَ الْحَمْدُ فِيْ بَلَآئِكَ وَصَنِيْعِكَ اِلىٰ خَلْقِكَ، وَلَكَ الْحَمْدُ فِي بَلَآئِكَ وَصَنِيْعِكَ اِلىٰۤ اَهْلِ بُيُوْتِنَا، وَلَكَ الْحَمْدُ فِيْ بَلَآئِكَ وَصَنِيْعِكَ اِلىٰۤ اَنْفُسِنَا خَاصَّةً، وَلَكَ الْحَمْدُ بِمَا هَدَيْتَنَا، وَلَكَ الْحَمْدُ بِمَا اَكْرَمْتَنا وَلَكَ الْحَمْدُ بِمَا سَتَرْتَنَا وَلَكَ الْحَمْدُ بِالْقُرْاٰنِ، وَلَكَ الْحَمْدُ بِالْاَهْلِ وَالْمَالِ، وَلَكَ الْحَمْدُ بِالْمُعَافَاةِ، وَلَكَ الْحَمْدُ حَتّٰى تَرْضٰى، وَلَكَ الْحَمْدُ اِذَا رَضِيْتَ يَا اَهْلَ التَّقْوٰى وَاَهْلَ الْمَغْفِرَةِ.
O Allah, all praises are due to You in Your test and doings with Your creation. All praises are due to You in Your test and doings with our household. All praises are due to You in Your test and doings specifically with ourselves. All praises are due to You for having guided us. All praises are due to You for having honoured us. All praises are due to You for covering our faults. All praises are to You on account of the Quraan Majeed and all praises are due to You for the family and wealth (You bestowed on us). All praises are due to You for having granted us safety and all praises are due to You until You are pleased. May praises be for You when You become pleased, O The One Who ought to be feared and The One Who is worthy of forgiving (sins).
On Sunday, 1st Sha’baan 1437 (corresponding to 8th May 2016), we met in a fatal accident. My beloved wife and son passed away in the accident and my eldest daughter was seriously injured, losing her left arm and breaking her left leg. May Allah Ta‘ala forgive us all and grant all who have passed on the highest stages in Jannatul Firdaus, aameen!
My respected and honourable ustaaz, Mufti Ebrahim Salejee (daamat barakaatuhum), suggested that I write a few lines regarding my beloved wife and the manner in which she left this world with the hope that it may serve as an inspiration for us all.
This wonderful woman, who was a great gift and bounty from Allah Ta‘ala, blessed me with immense happiness and support throughout my married life. She was my backbone and was always there to help me and support me in all my Deeni endeavours.
She had so many sterling qualities that it will not be possible for me to enumerate them all in this short article. However, I will try to mention some of the things that she had done in the last few days of her life which I hope will inspire us.
Tahajjud Salaah and Du‘aa
In the last ladies programme held in Isipingo Beach, Mufti Ebrahim Salejee (daamat barakaatuhum) had encouraged the ladies and children to wake up for Tahajjud Salaah. Since that day, she would wake up every night consistently, performing lengthy rakaats of Tahajjud Salaah and making lengthy du‘aas.
I once asked her jokingly, “Very long du‘aas you’re making! I hope you’re making du‘aa for me and your children also.” She laughed and said to me, “I always make du‘aa for you and your madrasah work, and every day I make du‘aa for my children.”
I then told her, “Make special du‘aa for your son because in this day and age, bringing up boys is not so easy.” When I said this, she replied, “I make six du‘aas for my son every day.” When I asked her which du‘aas she would make for her son, she told me that she made the following six du‘aas for him every day, the first two of which are the du‘aas that Mufti Ebrahim Salejee (daamat barakaatuhum) had told us to make for them, and the other four of which she had added from her own side:
- Allah Ta‘ala unku acha ghar naseeb farmaye. (May Allah Ta‘ala grant him a good home). This was the du‘aa of Moulana In‘aamul Hasan (rahimahullah). Mufti Ebrahim Salejee (daamat barakaatuhum) explained this to be a very comprehensive du‘aa which has many meanings. The essence of the du‘aa is that Allah Ta‘ala should bless him with a good home in this world, a good spouse, a good home in the qabar and a good home in the Aakhirah.
- May Allah Ta‘ala always allow him to interact with good people. This is a du‘aa which the old people used to make for their children. Throughout our lives, we interact with different people, whether at home or on travel, hence the need to always interact with good people.
The following four du‘aas are her own du‘aas:
- Allah Ta‘ala must make him a jayyid (excellent) haafiz, a qari and a practicing ‘aalim who will serve the Deen of Allah Ta‘ala with ikhlaas (sincerity) until his end.
- Allah Ta‘ala must make him perform all his salaah with jamaat (in congregation) in the first saff (row).
- Allah Ta‘ala must always keep him in the company of the Awliyaa (pious) of the time.
- Allah Ta‘ala must save him from ever having love for sports in his heart.
An amazing quality in her life was that she hardly ever made gheebat. If I had to bring up a topic and start speaking something bad about someone, she would immediately stop me and say, “Why are you talking about that person? We are much worse than him.” I eventually became very apprehensive about speaking anything negative about anyone in front of her.
She was very careful with her tongue and would not quickly blurt out things. Even if someone ridiculed her in some way, she would brush it off with a sweet smile. Our senior ‘Ulama have mentioned that if someone is careful with the use of their tongue, Allah Ta‘ala will bless them with a good death.
Alhamdulillah, she was very conscious of purdah and would never interact freely with non-mahram men, even if they were her brothers-in-law and cousins. She always donned a burqah over her cloak and would wear a double-flap purdah.
She hated it when young girls wore indecent clothing beneath their cloaks. On one occasion, I remember her reprimanding her niece for wearing jeans under her cloak. She made her immediately go and change her clothing and asked her to wear loose fitting trousers under her cloak.
Preparation for Death
By the grace of Allah Ta‘ala, she had no qadha fasts or qadha salaahs outstanding. After the Month of Ramadhaan, she would calculate all her missed fasts and write them down on her dressing table cupboard. Most of the time, she would complete all her qadhas in the Month of Shawwaal.
In fact, just before she passed away, on our way to a family programme, where I was supposed to give a small talk, she suggested to me that I speak about the importance of completing ones qadha fasts before the Month of Ramadhaan, as the fasts are sometimes delayed right until the end of Sha’baan.
She had also paid all her debts for pastries, meat, etc. and she did not owe money to anyone.
Love for ‘Ulama and Deen
She always had a deep love for our Madrasah Ta’leemuddeen and the students of the madrasah. She always told me, “Whenever you want to bring ‘Ulama home, please bring them and I will happily feed them.” She had a very soft spot for the madrasah students, and would make a point of calling them home regularly and feeding them. She would specifically feel sorry for the foreign hifz students at the madrasah, and would ask me to take sweets and food for them on special occasions such as ‘Eid, ‘Aashuraa, Ramadhaan, etc.
She mentioned to me on several occasions, “If ever Mufti Ebrahim Salejee (daamat barakaatuhum) needs any khidmat (service), you must immediately carry it out for him. If he needs to go anywhere, put his work ahead of my work.”
She was very passionate about the Ramadhaan i’tikaaf that takes place at the madrasah musjid and would make all the arrangements for its meals by phoning the local ladies and drawing up a roster for the iftaar.
When it was her turn, she would be very excited and would go out of her way to prepare a lavish meal. I would sometimes scold her and tell her that she was over doing it. However, her standard reply would be, “These are my mehmaan (guests) and I will prepare for them how I want to.”
Allah Ta‘ala blessed me on a few occasions to join Mufti Ebrahim Salejee (daamat barakaatuhum) for ‘umrah in Ramadhaan. I always asked her to tell me what she wanted from Makkah Mukarramah and Madeenah Munawwarah so that I could buy it for her. Her standard reply would be, “I don’t want anything. I only want you to stay at Mufti Saahib’s side and make his khidmat (serve him).”
There are always visitors at the madrasah and they often come unannounced. She would tell me, “Please tell Mufti Saahib that if ever he needs to feed any guests, he must just send them home without even informing me. If he needs tea and samoosas to be sent to the office, I will willingly make it and send it. ” Alhamdulillah this quality is found in all her sisters; they enjoy feeding and looking after guests.
Service to Her Parents
Alhamdulillah, in this aspect also, she used to go out of her way to take care of her parents, just like her other sisters, her brother and her sister-in-law. Her mother and father have been ill for some time and so she would regularly go to their home to help them as best as she could.
In December, her father was diagnosed with cancer and had to be operated on immediately. Alhamdulillah, she stayed with them for six weeks in December and took good care of them for the entire period. Whenever she went to their home, she had a habit of rubbing and massaging her father’s feet. Being diabetic, his feet always become swollen and so every night without fail, she would rub his feet with arnica oil.
In the last week before she passed away, she was very concerned about her mother’s Ramadhaan preparations. She spent the whole week preparing the filling, etc. and had all her mother’s samoosas filled by one of the local ladies in Isipingo Beach. Indeed, she was loved dearly by her parents and would go out of her way to help them.
Interaction with Her in-laws
In the 17 years that I was married to her, she has never once had a fight with my mother or my sisters. She always treated my parents very well.
The house we are living in belonged to her. It was a gift that her father had given to her when we got married. Yet she always made my parents feel very welcome in her home. When we extended the house, she told my father, “Papa, we made this section especially for you and mummy to come and live with us.” She told me to make a set of keys for the house and give it to my father and tell him that whenever he wanted to come and stay at the house, he may do so at his leisure. There was no need for him to ask us to come and stay.
The day before she passed away, we went to Estcourt and spent the night with my parents. I was not so keen to go but she insisted that we all go, as my parents were leaving for ‘umrah the next day. She phoned my mother and told her not to make supper. My father wanted to eat fish curry and rotla, hence she prepared the fish, made the rotlas and took it to Estcourt for supper. My father really enjoyed it and thanked her for making it for him.
Before leaving home, she made a lot of Ramadhaan savouries for my parents. She told my mother, “Mummy, you go nicely for ‘umrah and don’t worry about your savouries.” That night, she offered to help my mother pack her bags. She sat till quite late in my mother’s room and helped her with her luggage and packing. In the morning, she quickly helped her pack her pad-kos (food for the road) and her cooler bags and packed them into the car. My mother really loved her and took her as her own daughter.
Obedience to Her Husband
She was an excellent wife to me. She would cook delicious meals for me every day and have them hot and ready at meals times.
She was never an impediment in any of my Deeni works and she used to say this to me as well, “Insha-Allah I will never become an obstruction in any of your Deeni works. If you ever need to go anywhere, you may go with pleasure, as I know that I will also receive an equal share in the sawaab (reward).”
The night before she passed away, I was so happy with her for the manner in which she conducted herself with my parents, that when I came into the room to sleep, I said to her, “How can I ever thank you for doing so much for my parents? You make me so happy.” I then looked up towards the sky and said to Allah Ta‘ala more than 10 times, “O Allah! I am happy with her, You be happy with her. O Allah! I am pleased with her, please You be pleased with her.” I continued making du‘aa for her and she kept on smiling at me. It is mentioned in one hadeeth that if a woman’s husband is happy with her, she is a guaranteed Jannati.
She always took good care of my children and passed good values on to them. She was extremely particular about their salaah and would always ensure that she woke them up at the time of Fajr. She was also very careful to never send them anywhere without parental supervision. Their aunts would often request that the children come for holiday, but she would never allow them to go if she was not present as well. This was because Mufti Ebrahim Salejee (daamat barakaatuhum) once advised us not to send them anywhere without parental supervision.
She was also very particular about ta’leem at home. The Thursday before she passed away, I was gone to Umlazi for a programme and came back late after ‘Esha. I walked into the house, only to find my whole family sitting together, reciting durood and reading Fazaail-e-Aa’maal. After we completed the recitation of durood, she asked me to make du‘aa. I told her that she should make the du‘aa to which she replied by giving me a stiff look and saying, “Stop showing off now and make the du‘aa.” Alhamdulillah we made a lot of du‘aa together as a family and amongst the du‘aas we made was the du‘aa that Allah Ta‘ala bless us all with shahaadat (martyrdom) and Jannatul Firdaus. Insha-Allah, Allah Ta‘ala accepted this du‘aa in her favour.
She loved her immediate and extended family very much. She was extremely happy the weekend before she passed away as she had spent the weekend with her uncles, aunts and some cousins at her uncle’s farm.
They all got along so well that it’s hard in this day and age to find cousins and families that have so much of unity and love. May Allah Ta‘ala increase their love.
Death is a reality and everyone has to drink from the cup of death. No one and simply no one is able to delay the appointed time. I am really happy for her that Allah Ta‘ala blessed her with shahaadat (martyrdom). What gives me the greatest solace is that she repeatedly recited the kalimah, over and over again, before she fell unconscious.
She had such a smile on her face on that day that I never, in my entire life, saw her smile as broadly as she did on that day. When her janaazah was brought into the room and her face was revealed, everyone in the room saw that it was shining radiantly with noor. At the time of ghusal, her shahaadat finger remained in a position where it was facing towards the sky as one does in tashahhud. The crowd that had attended the janaazah was extremely large, consisting of many ‘Ulama and pious people.
May Allah Ta‘ala forgive her, be pleased with her and grant her and her son the highest stages in Jannatul Firdaus, aameen.