While Shopping, Do not Forget...

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Ramadan has approached:

When many people hear these words, they rush to the markets, aiming for commercial stores in cities and towns in an amazing and surprising way. Nothing drives them to this intense rushing to squares except assuring provision for the days and nights of Ramadan and buying the necessary foods and requirements for it. There is no harm in this at all. However, what attracts attention is the intense rush to buy in great amounts. Some surveys of just one Arab country pointed out that the foodstuff consumed during the month of Ramadan equals twice of what it consumes in all other months.

Also, you find countless stores placing great banners on their doors and streets that read, “Needs of the blessed month of Ramadan,” and introduce tempting offers, according to them, to attract customers, as if Ramadan is the season of food and eating.

Therefore, we find it suitable to draw the attention of our dear readers to some very important matters so that they do not forget these while shopping for their needs for Ramadan.

Firstly, do not forget the etiquette of entering a market:

If you go to a market, apply the following etiquette:

1- Invocation for entering a market:

The Messenger of Allah  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) said:

Whoever enters a market and says "La ’ilaha ’illallahu wahdahu la shareeka lahu, lahul-mulku wa lahul-hamdu, yuhyee wa yumeetu, wa Huwa hayyun la yamootu, biyadihil-khayru, wa Huwa ‘ala kulli shay’in Qadeer." (None has the right to be worshipped but Allah alone, Who has no partner. His is the dominion and His is the praise. He brings life and He causes death, and He is Living and does not die. In His Hand is all good, and He is Able to do all things.) Allah will write one million good deeds for him, erase one million of his bad deeds, and build him a house in Paradise. [At-Tirmithi; Al-Albani: good]

2- Do not be loud-voiced, meaning that you should not raise your voice in quarrels and disputes:
It was narrated regarding the description of the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) that he was not unseemly or obscene in his speech, that he was not loud-voiced in the streets, and that he did not return evil for evil; rather, he would forgive and pardon. [Al-Bukhari]
It is not suitable for a solemn and reasonable person to become loud-voiced merely because of being provoked by the simplest person for a trivial amount of money.

3- Lowering your gaze (from looking at forbidden things): Allah Almighty says (what means): {Tell the believing men to reduce [some] of their vision.} [Quran 24: 30]

Repetitive visits to the markets forces one to see what displeases Allah Almighty. In our present times, it is very rare to find markets free from forbidden scenes, especially women who aimlessly wander with the impermissible exposure of their adornment void of any modesty. Accordingly, when entering the markets, a man has to lower his gaze from looking at what Allah Almighty has forbidden because a gaze is like an arrow aimed at the heart, one can only succeed by avoiding it.

4- Maintaining the cleanliness and the protection of the markets. They should not be polluted with filth and rubbish, which can be a cause of paralyzing traffic and a source of foul odors. We all know that our religion calls for cleanliness and pleasant appearances in all things. May Allah Almighty protect you from all bad things!

5- Spread the greeting of peace: Spreading the greeting is recommended in markets in particular due to the great number of people, such as vendors, consumers and others, who go to them. Thus, the one who does so will receive multiple and great rewards, as it was stated in the hadith narrated by Abu Hurayrah, may Allah be pleased with him, who said that the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) said, “You will not enter Paradise until you believe, and you will not believe until you love one another. Shall I not tell you about something which, if you do it, will cause you to love one another? Spread the greeting amongst one another.” [Muslim]

It was also reported that Ibn ‘Umar, may Allah be pleased with him, and some other honorable Companions used to go to the markets to spread the greeting of peace.

We should not forget to remind the Muslim sister that going out with her mahram (permanently unmarriageable kin) is permissible if there is a need for this, provided that she observes the religious standards regarding this. A woman should be modest in her hijab and keep away from all that can dishonor her, compromise her modesty, or attract unwanted attention, such as flirting, adorning oneself, or wearing perfume. May Allah Almighty protect you.

Secondly, do not forget the needs of the spirit:

Dear brother and sister, every human being is composed of spirit and body. Every component has its own special nourishment. The nourishment of the body is from dust while the nourishment of the spirit is from the Lord of the Worlds. It is clearly observed that most people only care about the needs of the body and neglect the needs of the spirit. This really is a very shameful matter. Therefore, we advise you, while shopping and buying the needs of this month, to not neglect to buy the needs of the spirit for you actually are in bad need of them, and the month of Ramadan is the best time for them. I do not think that there is any Muslim who does not care for them; rather, he includes them among his top priorities. Anyway, we will state them, just as a kind reminder. Amongst them are:

- A copy of the Quran for yourself and every member of your family.

- Beneficial audio tapes and books, especially Hisn Al-Muslim min Athkar Al-Kitab wa Sunnah so that it may be a best friend for you.

- A siwak (twig from the Arak tree used for cleaning the teeth) for it cleanses the mouth and pleases the Lord.

Dear brother and sister, what a wonderful matter to have such things in the month of Ramadan for they are the nourishment of the spirit, the remedy of the heart, and the purification of the soul.

Shop calmly and, in the end, we ask Allah Almighty to make your month full of acts of worship, mercy, and every good thing.

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