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  1. Motivational desk frames inspired by the Quran

    The Quran is full of gems. The verses, the passages, the chapters, the parables may differ in words and phrases, but they all essentially talk of the same concepts – that we must believe in Allah, rely on Him and follow His commands if we wish to live in peace and contentment.

    At Baradari, we have taken some of these concepts, inspired by the Quran, written them in calligraphy, and neatly framed them. You can place these little frames as powerful reminders on your desk or shelf, home or office. Gift them to yourself, or your loved one.

    Qadr-Sabr-Shukr

    If you believe in “qadr”, you will be able to practise both “sabr” and shukr”

    “Qadr” is an Arabic word for destiny, decree, or pre-ordainment. It implies that Allah decreed our destinies before we were born, according to which our lives unfold. Belief in “qadr” is one of the six articles of faith for a Muslim.

    “Sabr” is patience. Patience is a deep, profound concept linked to “qadr”. It is practising restraint whether in distress or joy. When hardships visit us, being patient means not giving into anger or anxiety, being calm and practical, and trying our best to resolve our hardship, while placing our trust in Allah. When success or happiness visits us, being patient means not becoming arrogant or disobeying Allah’s command in expressing our joy. Being patient means not being overwhelmed by either sorrow or joy, and continuing to carry out our tasks in this world in the hope that Allah will reward us for them. Sabr is not easy to practise, which is why Allah rewards it highly. But certainly, belief in “Qadr” helps one in being patient, as a person learns to view his/her life in terms of Allah’s Decree and Plan for us. And Allah is, indeed, the Best of Planners.

    “Shukr” is gratitude and gratefulness to Allah, and is rooted in the concept of “qadr”. When we realise that Allah desires and plans the best for us, we feel a sense of gratitude, and thus optimism, even in distressing times. Allah has decreed the best for us, and even our seemingly “bad times” are good for us as they make us wiser, stronger and more compassionate human beings. Making us better people is all a part of Allah’s Qadr. Now isn’t that something to feel grateful for?

    Ilm-Amal

     â€˜Ilm’: Knowledge

    ‘Amal’: Action/Effort

    ‘Ilm’ and ‘Amal’ are two sides of the same coin, and one isn’t complete without the other.

    Without knowledge, how can we act upon it?

    And what use is knowledge if it isn’t followed by action?

    The Quran exhorts us to “believe and go good deeds” in order to taste success in this life and the next. Indeed, belief comes from knowledge. But belief alone is not enough for us to achieve success. Our deeds or acts must reflect our belief, which comes from knowledge.

    Interestingly, “ilm” and “amal” use the same letters of the Arabic alphabet – “aayeen”, “laam” and “meem”. That’s even a further sign of how the two concepts of knowledge and action are linked.

    Usr-Yusr

    Usr: Hardship, difficulty

    Yusr: Ease, comfort

    Allah says in the Quran (Chapter 94:5), “Fa inna ma’al usri Yusra” (“For verily with hardship comes ease.”)

    When we encounter blockades in life, Allah also guides us on the way out. If we are facing stress, ease makes its way in too. It’s important to understand that “ease” does not come after, but with, hardship. They don’t exist sequentially, but together, even though one aspect may seem to overpower the other at some points. But eventually, difficulties do get eased out. Ease starts coming in, even though you don’t realise it in the midst of hardship. In fact, your own courage and efforts to deal with the hardship is a sign of ease given by Allah. So, put your trust in Him and hope for the best.

     

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  2. Islamic Wall Art: A Reminder

    Each verse of the Quran is a gem, a word of wisdom, a mercy for mankind. The Quran also has instructions that are applicable to special situations, such as those related to marriage, inheritance, treatment of prisoners caught in battles, etc. But the overall Quranic message is that of taqva, which can be defined as the fear and love of Allah. Whatever situation we may find ourselves in – as routine as eating your breakfast, or as special as birth of a child – we must always be in a state of taqva, i.e, fear and love of Allah. Taqva is not a moment, it is not a temporary feeling. It must be a defining feature of our lives. When we are conscious of the fact that Allah is watching us -- our every thought, feeling and action -- and that He loves us and yet can hold us accountable for our misdeeds, we would be upright in our conduct, merciful towards fellow human beings, and just and fair in all our dealings.

    Islamic wall art, the art of writing the verses of the Quran in beautiful calligraphic styles, can serve as a constant reminder to us of the Blessings and Mercy of Allah. It can enable us to be in a state of taqva. For example, if you have a beautiful frame of Ayat Al Kursi  in your living room, you would be careful of the content beaming on your TV or the language you use with your guests. If you have a lovely canvas work of Alhamdulillah in your dining hall, it can serve you as a reminder not to criticise the dishes, as having food on your table is itself a blessing from Allah. If you have to sit for an exam the next day, and are distracted by certain issues in your life, the ayat ‘Fa inna ma’al usri ysura’ (‘Verily with difficulty comes relief’), if pasted on your wall, can remind you that indeed Allah would aid you in your exam and overall in your life too. Indeed, the Quran is full of Wisdom, you just need to be in constant touch with it to be at peace. 

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  3. Islamic gifts for loved ones

    Your best friend’s birthday is around the corner. What do you want to gift her? A handbag? A book? A table lamp? Aren’t these choices too regular, too usual, and just too boring? Why not gift her something that inspires her, lasts forever and benefits her too? Something she would keep in her heart and even display on her wall. We are talking of Islamic calligraphy art. The best gift one could give a loved one, be it a parent, a child, a sibling, a spouse or even someone unrelated, is a reminder of the Blessings of Allah. Islamic wall art  can serve as a beautiful reminder of the Mercy and Grace of Allah as well as enhance the visual appeal of the home of the recipient of the gift.

    At Baradari: A House of Arts and Crafts, you would find a treasure of beautiful Islamic gifts which you can give to your loved ones. We have a range of Islamic canvas art with several verses of the Quran written beautifully on them.

    Some of these can be gifted generally, and some for a special loved one. For example, if you have to gift a parent, you can give a framed piece of Dua for parents, which is mentioned in Verse no. 24 of Chapter 17 (Surah Al Isra): ‘Rabbir hamhuma kama rabbayni sagheera’. In English, it is translated as “Oh Lord! Bestow mercy on my parents as they took care of me when I was small.” Of course, the best gift a child can give to his/her parents is by reciting the above dua in heart, with full sincerity, and by being kind and good to them. This is not a child’s favour for his/her parents, but a duty as commanded by Allah. But if we one wants to gift his mother or father on their birthday, or wedding anniversary, the Quranic dua for parents written in a beautiful calligraphic style should certainly bring them joy.

    If you wish to gift something to a newlywed couple, then there Quranic verses, which if followed devoutly, can ensure marital bliss. For example,  Verse 187 from Chapter 2 (Surah Al Baqrah): "They (your wives) are a garment for you and you too are a garment for them." This verse, written in an artistic manner and printed on canvas, if gifted to a newlywed couple, can be a perfect reminder of the marital life ahead of them. Indeed, the Quran is full of wisdom, and gifting a gem from it, is a wonderful gift one could give a loved one.

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