[Janāza details below]
To Allāh we belong, and to Him we are returning.
We offer our heartfelt condolences to the family of Shaikh Haitham al-Haddad whose dear father, Shaikh Jawwad al-Haddad, passed away yesterday after breaking his fast.
Here is a video message from Sheikh Haitham taken a few hours ago as he left to catch a flight to attend his fathers Janaza.
Many great lessons from the Shaikh’s father (rahimahullāh) have been coming in since last night and we are unable to mention them all. He was known by many Muslims, young and old, from the east and the west, for his character, sense of humour, piety and proactivity in worship, māshāAllāh. Despite being in his 80s, he would regularly fast and pray in the masjid, including fajr prayers—a lesson for us all in proactivity and strength for worship.
As a Palestinian from Gaza who came to Taif (Saudi Arabia) 60 years ago as a teacher, he pushed his children to work twice as hard in their education and tarbiya to overcome the obstacles they faced. As a result Allāh blessed his children with distinguished qualifications and successful careers. A tree is known by its fruits. Those that know his children testify to their combination between success in the dunya and (inshā Allāh) success in the Dīn, judging by their manners, morals and worship.
One of the distinguishing characteristics in the life and vision of Shaikh Haitham al-Haddad—one that Muslims across the globe continue to benefit from by the Grace of Allāh—is his steadfast commitment to tarbiya; the nurturing and cultivation of people. Over the years Shaikh Haitham has frequently mentioned valuable lessons he learnt from his father (rahimahullāh) who played an active role in pushing his children to excel in every field, including ‘ibādah (worship and servitude to Allāh). In one of the most recent reminders Shaikh Haitham gave after fajr one morning, he mentioned one such lesson:
My father told me something, may Allah preserve him, one time. They live in Saudi Arabia, I went to visit them, and in the first night we stayed up late at night chatting, and of course when you are awake with family they bring food and you continue eating. So, the next day we prayed Fajr and we went to bed after Fajr—this is not a recommendation that you don’t sleep until Fajr but my father was there; I don’t see him for some time etcetera so we stayed awake until Fajr. And then in the morning we woke up and my brother said, “We will have a feast because you just came. We will have a good dinner and we will have a sheep slaughtered etcetera.” So by Dhuhr time we are still full, so I said to my brothers “When are you bringing the food?” They said that my father had left and most likely we will make the food after ʿAsr. So I said, that’s alright and I remember I couldn’t eat but I drank a sip of water, I remember that. Then my father came after Dhuhr and they said “Yes, we will put the food after Asr.” My father said, “Well, I have been eating during the whole night, I am fasting.” So they said “You are fasting, khalas, we will put the food after Maghrib.” I said “Allāh yahdīkum yā Abūya, Why didn’t you tell me? I could have fasted! Just now I lost the fast because of a sip of water. Why didn’t you tell me?” He said, “Well, it’s your fault.” Then he told me something, Wallāhi, it is profound. He told me, may Allah reward him,
“Don’t break your fast because of anyone. When the time of food comes and they offered it to you in front of you and you had started fasting, then you can break your fast. But to say ahh, because the food will come after Dhuhr and after ʿAsr and you intended to fast let me eat my breakfast or let me drink water – from now: don’t do that. Take it as an advice from me.”
And subḥānaAllāh, I have found when the person has that in his mind the food will be late. As Ibn al-Qayyim (rahimahullāh) said,
“When the person intends to do good deeds and he gets used to it Allāh will help him to do the good deeds. The good deeds will chase him.”
One time, subḥānaAllāh, after that a strange incident happened with my wife. It was the last day for her to fast the six days of Shawwāl and it was Friday. So I was leaving for Jumuʿah and she said “Some sisters will be coming to visit us so I will serve some food and really it will be embarrassing to tell them I am fasting, so khalas I will lose this sixth day, I will break my fast.” Then I told her about my father’s advice. I said, “When they come, then break your fast. But to break your fast from now, something might happen, and then you will regret it.” She said, “Do you think so? I will be fasting half of the day…” I said, “Wallāhi this is the advice of my father and it works.” So what she did, she continued fasting and she prepared the food for the guests. Six of them. I remember, six sisters. Wallāhi, my dear brothers and sisters, none of them came. Wallāhi, none of them came, all for different reasons. My wife said “Wallāhi, if I had broken my fast because of them and they did not come, Wallāhi I would call them one by one to tell them off. Alḥamdulillāh that I did not break my fast.” I told her “See, wallāhi, this is golden advice.”
May Allāh reward my father. Once you put it in your mind, Allāh will help you. And you don’t need to, for example, fast Monday and Thursday only. You don’t need to fast on the 13th, 14th and 15th only. No, no, no. Let the ʿibādah be in your mind all the time, and don’t think twice before doing the ʿibādah. Just do it, because if you miss it you will regret that you did not do it.
We take the many great things we hear about Shaikh Jawwad al-Haddad (rahimahullāh) optimistically as a good sign, having husn al-dhann of Allāh. We all benefit from the excellent tarbiya he gave to Shaikh Haitham from a young age, which we ask Allāh to benefit him in his grave for centuries to come. We should all take a lesson in the importance of cultivating individuals to leave behind a legacy. We are reminded that Abū Hurayrah (May Allāh be pleased with him) reported that the Messenger of Allāh (ﷺ) said,
“When a child of Ādam dies, his deeds come to an end except for three things: Sadaqah Jāriyah (ceaseless charity); knowledge [that he left behind] which is beneficial; or a virtuous descendant who prays for him.”
In his characteristic zeal for encouraging people towards good, this morning Shaikh Haitham instructed us to use this news as an encouragement personally to make use of our own time with regards to our parents. If they are alive, we must hasten to serve them and worship Allāh through their good-treatment; if they have passed away we must fulfil their rights of making du’ā for them, giving charity on their behalf and keeping good ties with those close to them. Commenting on his father passing just after completing a fast, he remarked,
Try to love one or more of the good deeds to worship Allāh. When Allāh sees you—his beloved slave—trying to please Him through these deeds, He will make that deed easy for you in the dunya and then will—inshā Allāh—make you die upon it. Allāh will help His slave carry out acts of worship even if obstacles come in his way. When he was living in Taif, my father had a habit of praying a janāza prayer everyday. When he moved to Jeddah to be with his children, by the Qadr of Allāh an old graveyard was renovated, so he was able to continue this habit, subhānAllāh.
The family of the deceased are understandably upset at losing their father and mentor. Please make du’ā for him, give your messages of condolences and support in the comments below, as Shaikh Haitham will be monitoring Islam21c as usual as he travels to meet his family, and will be pleased to learn of people taking lessons from this and benefiting themselves and others.
The janāza prayer will be held after fajr tomorrow morning (Wednesday) in Masjid Umm Abd al-Rahmān in Jeddah, and the burial will take place in Maqbara Rahma next to the masjid, inshā Allāh. Click here for a Google Maps link.
We optimistically beseech Allāh to forgive Shaikh Jawwad al-Haddad (rahimahullāh) all of his sins and make his grave from among the gardens of Paradise, and make his children an unending source of reward for him.
 Recording available soon inshā Allāh
 Recorded in Sahīh Muslim