Anger Management - Mosque Foundation

mada II 1431
Issue 36
W W W. M O S Q U E F O U N D AT I O N . O R G
December 2015 – Safar - Rabiul Awal 1437 Issue 98
Message From The Imam
Anger Management
Sh. Ahmed Arafat
Abu Hurayrah
reported that the prophet
said: “A strong person is not the
one who frequently defeats people in wrestling; it is the one who keeps himself
under control when anger arises.” Reported by Bukhari and Muslim
The hadith, under discussion, simply teaches that one’s real power and strength
depends on one’s ability to control the anger problems. In other words, uncontrolled anger is a sure way to lose your power and to ruin your life. That is why
anger is sometimes connected with serious crimes such as assault and murder
and frequently associated with helplessness, loss, frustration, violence and regret. The hadith comes to correct the fallacy that calmness or forgiveness is a
sign of weakness. In a very clear statement, however, the prophet
power with controlling emotions. Being informed of a person who is famous
for his self-control, a wise man said: “This person will not be enslaved by lusts,
conquered by whims or defeated by anger.”
What is anger? It can be defined as “A human emotion that varies in intensity
from mild annoyance and irritation to strong fury and rage.”
According to this definition, anger is a natural emotion experienced by all humans, like all other emotions; such as, joy
and happiness. Anger in itself is not a destructive emotion.
The problem lies in mismanaging it. In his Ihyaa, Imam alGhazali makes this issue very clear as he observes: “Some
think that anger can be totally eliminated and well treated.
Others think that anger cannot be treated at all. Actually,
both opinions, continues the Imam, are faulty. The truth is
as long as man loves things and hates other things, he will
surely be apt to anger. As long as things go his way, he will
love them; otherwise, he will hate them. Anger follows that
[love and hate].”
Accordingly, it is how you handle your anger that makes it
acceptable or not. Maymoun ibn Mahran said: “A man came
to Sulayman and said: “O Abu Abdullah, give me a piece of
advice. Upon this, Sulayman said: “Do not get angry!” the
man replied: “You instructed me not to get angry; yet, sometimes it is uncontrollable.” Then Sulayman said: “If you got
angry, control your tongue and your hand!” This conversation sets the big difference between controlled anger where
no abuse is involved and uncontrolled anger that requires
immediate treatment.
Here is an example that shows the prophet’s anger. Abu
narrated that once a man said to the prophet
: “I come late to the Fajr prayer because the Imam makes
his Salah long. Then the prophet
got angry, I had never
seen him angrier before, and said: “O people, some of you
dissuade people [from Allah]. Whoever leads Salah should
make it short for behind him are the weak, the old and people with emergencies.” So the prophet’s anger was visible,
however, it was constructive for the following reasons: (1)
the motivation of his anger was unselfish; it was for the injustice done to others, not to the prophet, (2) there was no
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Anger Management
physical or verbal abuse involved, (3) there was no hatred or malice involved, (4) his point was
well presented with sound arguments and (5) it was not his habit to get angry.
1. Hussein Ata
2. Oussama Jammal
3. Jamal Said
4. Habes Abdallah
5. Abdallah M Shuaibi
6. Kalid Baste
7. Fahim Aref
8. Jehad Materiyeh
9. Ahmed Kamni
10. Aisheh Said
11. Banan Said
12. Marwan Elsafadi
13. Jafar Ahmad
14. Safaa Zarzour
15. Mohamed Aduib
16. Montaha Salem
17. Muin Abu Sharara
18. Ziad Zatar
19. Karen Danielson
Hussein Ata
Sh. Jamal Said
Sh. Ahmed Arafat
Tareq Abu-Ammer
Aisheh Said
Mohamed Chehade
Banan Said
Abdel Baset Hamayel
De c e m b e r 2 0 1 5 Vol. 06, Issue 98
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Usually this controlled anger is a signal that alerts us that there is something wrong that should
be corrected immediately. It also ignites us to reject domestic, social, economic or political
injustices and to defend others’ rights. There are countless organizations that were founded
because of being outraged by intolerable carelessness. For example, in 1981 after two Wayland
High School hockey players were killed in separate car crashes SADD (Students Against Drunk
Drivers) was founded to oppose drunk drivers and worked on passing tougher penalties for
them. Now the organization expanded its mission and name to be named Students Against Destructive Decisions to prevent all destructive behaviors that are harmful to young people; such
as drinking, impaired driving, violence and suicide.
As for the uncontrolled anger, it should be considered as one’s worst enemy. It is a sign of
weakness, and sometimes a sign of insanity, that may lead to destroying individuals, family
members, friends, co-workers or even nations. It may even cost your life! Mismanaged anger
can lead to complicated physical, social and spiritual problems that make it impossible for one
to enjoy one’s life. Physically, anger causes increased heart rate, blood pressure and levels of
adrenaline. Socially, it may lead to ruining marriages, demolishing families, creating hostility
and losing friends. Spiritually, the hostility and hatred caused by anger leads to many spiritual
problems. In his Ihyaa, Imam al-Ghazali observes: “Hostility results in eight matters against the
hated person. First, Hasad (Evil Envy) which makes you wish that he would lose his God-given
favors. Second, it makes you feel happy when a calamity befalls him. Third, it leads to abandoning him even if he tried to approach you. Fourth, it makes you withdraw from him out of
belittlement. Fifth, it makes you backbite and slander him. Sixth, it makes you mimic him out of
ridicule. Seventh, it makes you abuse him physically. Eighth, it makes you deny him his rights.”
Because of all these damages anger causes, the prophet instructed us not to get angry. According
to Imam al-Bukhari, Abu Hurayrah
narrated that a man came to the prophet and said: ‘Give
me some advice.’ “Do not get angry,” replied the prophet . Then the man repeated the request
several times only to get the same answer from the prophet.” Scholars interpreted ‘Do not get
angry’ in two ways. First, avoid the situations that trigger you anger and work on developing
your character. Second, do not act on your anger when it arises as Allah
described the righteous “When they get angry, they do forgive” (42:37).
Steps to Manage your Anger:
1- Change your view of anger. Remember that the prophet
counted uncontrolled anger as a
sign of weakness. In his Ihyaa, Imam al-Ghazali observes: “One of the sparks that ignite anger
is that many ignorant people call anger ‘courage, manhood, prestige and perseverance!”
2- Develop better communication skills as I explained in a previous article on the Five Habits
of Good Listeners.
3- Develop the habit of Muhasabah (self-accountability). Ask yourself what you did wrong on
a daily basis. When you realize that you dealt unjustly with someone, do not hesitate to ask him
or her for forgiveness.
4- Breathe deeply and repeat a calming word, phrase or sentence. The Quran teaches: “If a suggestion from Satan assails your (mind), seek refuge with Allah; for He is the All-Hearing, the
All-Knowing” (7:200). Accordingly, the prophet
recommended saying faithfully: “a’udhu
billahi mina al-Shaytan al-Rajeem” which means “I seek Allah’s refuge against Satan, the Ex-
December 2015 – Safar - Rabiul Awal 1437
December 2015 – Safar - Rabiul Awal 1437
pelled [from God’s mercy].”
5- Do not take decisions or pass judgments when angry. Wait till you calm down. Do not write any letters or send e-mails or phone messages
while in the state of anger since there is a chance of error in judgment or harshness in tone. Imam Bukhari and Muslim narrated, on the authority of Abu Bakr
, that the prophet
said: “Let none of you judge between two people when his anger arises.”
reported that the prophet
6- Try to listen to your partner to absorb his or her anger. Screaming back will never solve a problem! Ibn Abbas
said: “If any one of you gets angry, let him be silent!” Ibn Rajab commented: “This is a good remedy for anger because an angry person
will utter offensive words, and then he would regret when he calms down. So if he stopped talking, all this evil would go away.” Just think of
the last time you got angry with someone. Think about how much better it would have been if you had chosen to walk away or remain silent.
You need to practice silence till it becomes a second nature to you.
7- Before abusing others, remember Allah’s power and your need to get His forgiveness.
8- Learn from your mistakes. Write down what triggered your anger. Ask yourself what you did wrong and how you can do better next time.
9- Think of how ugly a person looks when angry.
10- Try to recall anything good the offending person did for you. This will help undermine your anger.
will forgive you. “And let them pardon and overlook. Would you not like that Allah should forgive you? And Allah
11- Forgive and Allah
is Forgiving and Merciful” (24:22).
will appreciate your behavior and love your character. Allow time to peacefully feel Allah’s love and appreciation
12- Forgive and Allah
of your conduct. Imam Muslim reported, on the authority of Ibn Abbas, that the prophet said to Ashaj ibn Abd Qays: “You have two characteristics that Allah love: forgiveness and calmness.”
13- Recall and read the inspiring stories of forgiving and loving people.
14- Pray. The prophet
used to frequently pray: “O Allah, I ask you to grant me Truth in anger and displeasure” (Imam Ahmed).
15- Do not give up.
How to Enliven Your
Salah, Part 2
By Ahmed Arafat
In the first section, we recognized the concept of Munajah
(intimate conversations) with Allah
and how it permeated
throughout the Prophet’s Salah. In this section, we will learn,
through the recitation of al-Fatihah, that Salah is not one way
conversation; rather, it is an actual conversation between us and
said: I have heard the Prophet say: “Allah Abu Hurayrah has said: I have divided prayer between Me and My servant
into two halves, and My servant shall have what he has asked
for. When the servant says: “All praise belongs to Allah, the
Lord of all the Worlds,” Allah
says: “My servant has praised
Me.” And when the servant says: “The Merciful, the Ever-Merciful,” Allah says: “My servant has exalted Me.” When the servant says: “Master of the Day of Judgement,” Allah says: “My
servant has glorified Me.” When the servant says: “You alone do
we worship, and from You alone do we seek help,” Allah says:
“This is between Me and My servant, and My servant shall have
what he has asked for.” When the servant says: “Guide us to the
Straight Path, the Path of those whom you have favored, not of
those upon whom is Your anger, nor of those who are astray,”
Allah says: “This is for My servant, and My servant shall have
what he has asked for.” [Reported by Muslim and others]
For an effective prayer, here are few notes derived from this
(1) Pause at the end of each ayah. These frequent pauses will
help you control your thoughts and regain your concentration as
you can easily recognize your outside-Salah thoughts. However,
reciting al-Fatihah fast will serve only as a lip service whereas
Salah is supposed to be a Heart service.
(2) As you pause at the end of each ayah, allow moments to feel
December 2015 – Safar - Rabiul Awal 1437
Allah’s response. This is actually an unappalled, spiritual joy that can
be experienced, not described. In his book al-Salah wa Ahkam Tarikiha,
Imam Ibn al-Qayyim observes: By Allah, if the fumes of desire and the
rust of sins and enormities were not placed upon the hearts, these hearts
would have flown out of happiness and joy as their Lord, Maker and
Deity says: “My servant has praised Me, My servant has extolled Me
and My servant has glorified Me.”
(3) Each word of al-Fatihah (and all the other praise statements) has to
be expressed with clarity. Mumbling the prayer recitations and uttering
words quickly and indistinctly with partly closed lips will never nurture your heart or help you grow spiritually. For instance, compare alHamdu Lillahi Rabbil ‘Alameen (when each word or cluster is clearly
pronounced) with hamlirabilameen (when it is mumbled and turned into
a meaningless sentence).
(4) Recognize that al-Fatihah has three main sections with three connected themes. First, the Surah starts with praising Allah
a list of Divine attributes (Lord of the Worlds, the Merciful, the EverMerciful and Master of the Day of Judgment)—all in the third person:
“He.” Second, as we recognize Allah’s attributes in the first theme, we
feel his presence and closeness; that is why, the second theme introduces the servant’s decision to be committed to God’s worship and begins with a pronoun shift “You do we worship, and You do we seek
help from” to imply the sense of closeness and to make a covenant and
commitment with Allah
to obey Him. Third, the Surah closes with a
prayer for unceasing Divine guidance which is considered as the major
theme; that is why, we respond with “Ameen” to the end of the Fatiha.
(5) Remember that the first two themes are the introduction to the prayer
for Guidance. So, do you really mean it when you say: “Guide us to the
Straight Path …”? Does it make sense to ask God for something with a
totally distracted mind?
December 2015 – Safar - Rabiul Awal 1437
Estaciones de la vida
Assalam Aleikum hermanos de fe,
Vemos por nuestras ventanas, “nuestros ojos”, el bello panorama de los diversos, maravillosos colores de las hojas de los arboles.
Subhana Allah, ¡Gloria sea para El Creador De tan bella creacion! Entonces me pongo a pensar que todo esto es un ejemplo, una leccion
para nosotros y me doy cuenta que es similar a nuestro ciclo de vida. Las hojas asi como nuestras vidas tienen un comienzo, en la primavera
empiezan a brotar y son pequeñas. Llega el verano y las hojas estan verdes, grandes cual ayudan a proveer sombra y brisa asi como nosotros
tomamos nuestra fuerza y energia en nuestra juventud. Despues llega el otoño y las hojas empiezan a cambiar sus colores pues tuvieron el
tiempo necesario para poder llegar a esa etapa. Asi nosotros tambien llegamos a la cumbre de nuestras vidas y sabebos que el invierno se acerca
y las hojas caeran y desapareceran; asi como nuestras vidas que tendran que culminar su ciclo en esta vida temporal. Pero tambien sabemos
que de verdad estas hojas renaceran con el permiso de El Todopoderoso como tambien nosotros resusitaremos despues de haber muerto. Allah,
El Todopoderoso nos dice en el Sagrado Coran capitulo 6 : verso 59,”El posee las llaves de lo oculto y nadie mas que El las conoce. Sabe lo
que hay en la tierra y en el mar. No hay hoja que caiga que El no lo sepa, ni grano en el seno de la tierra, o algo que este verde o seco sin que
se encuentre registrado en un libro evidente.” Reflecciono en este verso y me pregunto, ¿ porque nos frustarnos por nuestras vidas,por nuestro
destino? si nuestras vidas estan en tan Nobles Manos, con El Misericordioso, El Compasivo, El Amoroso, El Dueño y Senor de los Cielos y
la Tierra.
Si esta creacion de Allah(SWAT) una hoja esta siendo supervisada a todo momento de su existencia por Su Creador entonces porque
no someterme a confiar, a desarollar paciencia pues todo lo que vivo, siento, experimento en mi vida tiene un Gran Vigilante, Un Protector
cual decidira con mi vida cual le pertenece solo a EL(SWAT), lo mejor. Allah(SWAT) nos dice en el Sagrado Coran Capitulo 57:verso 22; “No
sucede ninguna desgracia en la Tierra ni os azota a vosotros mismos adversidad alguna sin que este registrada en un libro[la Tabla Protegida]
antes de que acaezca. Ello es facil para Allah.” Desde mi nacimiento hasta mi ultimo respiro mi vida ya hacido escrita. Nada puede pasar en
este mundo sin haber sido escrito en el Libro De Allah(SWAT).
En una autentica hadiz Qudsi, Ibn Abbas(que Allah este complacido con el) narro, “ Un dia yo estaba cabalgando detras de el Mensajero de Allah(Que la paz y bendicion de Allah sea con El) y el dijo, “O joven, Yo te enseñare unas palabras de consejo: Se conciente de
Allah, y Allah te protejera. Se conciente de Allah, y tu lo encontraras en frente de ti. Si tu pides(por algo), pidelo a Allah.Si buscas ayuda,
recurre a la ayuda de Allah. Y ten cuidado que si toda una nacion se juntara para beneficiarte en algo, no te beneficiarian en nada , exepto lo que
Allah(SWAT) ha predestinado para ti, y ten cuidado que si todos se unieran para hacerte daño en algo, ellos no te harian daño en nada exepto
lo que Allah(SWAT)ha predestinado para ti.Las plumas han sido levantadas y los registros se han doblado.” (At-Tirmidhi)
Tengo confianza en el Creador que nuestras vidas tendran su ciclo de acuerdo a Su Justo Mandato. Que Allah, El Todopoderoso nos
mantenga guiados en el camino correcto hasta el ultimo respiro de nuestras vidas. Y Allah(SWAT) dice en el Sagrado Coran Capitulo12: verso
10;” .....¡Creador de los Cielos y la Tierra! tu eres mi Protector en esta vida y en la otra, hazme morir sometido a Ti, y reuneme [en la otra vida]
con los justos. Allah (SWAT) quiera,Amen.
Su hermana en Islam,
Celia Snowber
December 2015 – Safar - Rabiul Awal 1437
December 2015 – Safar - Rabiul Awal 1437
101 W