Monday, August 8, 2011

Medicinal Properties of Dates

Bism Illah wa as salaamu alaikum wa Rahmat Allah wa Barakatuh.

(This is taken from the Yemen Times)

Medicinal Benefits of the Dates:

1- The great worth of dates is also indicated in the Quraan,” And shake towards you the trunk of the palm tree, it will drop on you fresh ripe dates", so eat and drink and be comforted”. (Surat Mariyam, Ayaat 25-6). According to Medical studies, the ripe date contains a substance that urges uterine spasms and increases contractions especially in the time of delivery. This substance resembles ‘oxytocin’ that is secreted by the interior lobe of pituitary gland, which encourages contractions of the uterus. Dates contain some stimulants which strengthen the muscles of the uterus in the last months of pregnancy. This helps the dilation of the uterus at the time of delivery and reduces post-natal bleeding. This was the sacred prescription, for the mother of Messiah at the time of delivery, to make the delivery trouble-free and easy.

2- It enhances the manhood; removes the weakness, if taken with milk, before sleep.

3- Dieticians consider Dates the best food for breast-feeding mothers. This is because Dates contain elements that assist in alleviating depression and enrich the breast milk with the nutrients needed to make the child healthy and resistant to disease.

4- Another factor making dates the ideal food is their digestibility. Within half an hour of eating them, the tired body regains new vigor. The reason for this is that low blood sugar is the main cause of hunger, not an empty stomach as is often assumed.

5- When the body absorbs the nutritional essence of a few dates the sensation of hunger is abated.

6- Eating dates in the morning on an empty stomach kills intestinal worms and other parasites, for dates have an antidotal potency which restrains their growth.

7- Dates contain calcium, sulphur, iron, potassium, phosphorus, manganese, copper, magnesium, volatile oils, Vitamin-B6, folic acid, Potassium, Iron and Magnesium, proteins, sugars, vitamins and are rich in natural fibers.

8- Magnesium is very important element to the pregnant women and is hard to find as natural source.

9- We shall recommend that they try dates for the new born for the relief of pain. It is important to the function of the heart and blood circulation. (1-“Clin Obstet Gynecol”:1999Dec; 42(4):802-19, 2-“Controversies in Tocolytic Therapy”. Katz VL, Farmer RM, 3-, Center for Genetics & Maternal-Fetal Medicine, Sacred Heart Medical Center, Eugene, Oregon 97401, USA).

10- Placing a sugary substance inside the mouth of a new-born baby ,it also radically reduces pain sensation and heart rate. An interesting scientific medical study proved beyond any doubt the benefit of giving a new-born child sugar, in order to reduce the feeling of any painful procedure like heel pricking for a blood sample or before circumcision, (British Medical Journal, No. 6993, 10th June 1995, 2-“The analgesic effect of sucrose in full term infants”, by Nora Haouari, Christopher Wood, Gillian Griffiths & Malcolm Levene, Leeds General Infirmary, England). Abu Buradah reported from Abu Musa, who said: "I had a new-born baby; I took him to Prophet Mohammed , who called him Ibrahim. He chewed a date then he took it and rubbed the inside of the baby’s mouth with it."

11- The date contains a very high percentage of sugar (70-80%); it has both fructose and glucose which have high calorific values, it is easily and quickly digestible, and very helpful to the brain.

12- The date contains 2.2% protein, vitamin A, vitamins B1, B2 and nicotruic acid (against Pellagra) it has traces of minerals needed for the body.

13- Potassium, of which the percentage is very high, has been found to be very effective for cases of bleeding, such as the occasions of birth or circumcision.

14- Dates are recommended for removal of dizziness. It is now well known that low blood sugar and low blood pressure are among the causes of dizziness.

15- While the level of trace elements in the body falls, the health of the blood vessels is affected, that leads to increased heart rate and a consequent inability of the heart to perform its functions with normal efficiency.

16- As dates are rich in calcium, they contribute to healthy bones. For this reason it is recommended that children and older adults, especially women, eat plenty of dates to strengthen their bones.

17- Dates are also important in maintaining good vision and are effective in guarding against night-blindness.

18- It is highly recommended for those who have any kind of hear problem. It is a sacred medicine to treat respiratory disorder, as well as a salve and a heart stimulant. In the early years of Islam, dates were served as food for Muslim soldiers. As the best stimulant of the muscles, it is a best tonic for one about to engage in battle.

19. Dates are also rich in natural fibers.

20- Modern medicine has shown that Dates are effective in preventing abdominal cancer.

21- In short words, one date satisfies the minimum requirements of a balanced and healthy diet.

Selected varieties out of uncounted range:

There are approximately 552 different varieties of dates; the best dates are very rare. Orange-brown, very transparent with a caramel taste. It is an Iraqi Date, from the oasis of Mandali, east of Baghdad. In Iraq, Dates are sometimes filled with clotted cream.” Nubut Saiyf, which is a long date, shaped like a sword (Sayf), from the Riyadh region on the Najd plateau in central Arabia; Sukkari, meaning “sweet one,” from the Qasim region north of Riyadh; the rare and very expensive Anbar or Anbara date from the Madinah region; and finally, the Khlas (quintessence), of Al Hasa. “Khalal, Busr and Saraban are different names, from different parts of the Arabia. The most popular Dates of Hijaz include Khunaizi, Bukayyirah, Gharr, Shaishi and Ruzaiz, Sufri, Barhi, Sullaj and Khudhairi. People of Madinah mainly loved Anbara, Ajwah, Rothanah, Baidh, Rabiah, Barhi, Hilwah, Hulayyah, Safawi, Shalabi, Khlas and considered them as “the perfection of the Date.”

Pressed dates( Ajwah) , the Gift of Heaven :

The word Ajwah is a noun from the verb Aja, which means to pacify an infant who is still being breastfed, but who is in the process of being weaned. “Al Dawau Bil Ajwah” is very famous phrase in Arabia, which means treat diseases through Ajwah. It was a common practice among mothers in Arabia to use dates—especially the dry, chewy types, one of which is Ajwah—to wean their infants. They would let their babies chew on the date to pacify them, strengthen their gums and overcome their teething pains. Most likely, Ajwah got its name from this use, as it has the right texture and sweetness for the purpose.” Prophet Mohammed took all varieties of dates, but preferred the Ajwah. “Ajwah date, from Madinah, was the favorite of Prophet Mohammed because of its chewy texture and flavor”. Cured dates are called Ajwah in Arabi.

1- "Ajwah date is an excellent remedy". (Bukhari & Muslim).

2- "Ajwah date is certainly an excellent and sufficient food."

3- "Ajwah is from Jannat ( heaven) and contains an antidote against poison" (Tirmizi).

4- I suffered from an illness. Prophet Mohammed visited me. He put his hands between my nipples and I felt its coolness at my heart. He said: You are a man suffering from heart disease. Go to Al Haris Ibn Kaladah, brother of Saqif. He is an expert who gives medical treatment. He should take seven Ajwah dates of Madinah and grind them with their kernels, and then put them into your mouth. (Sunan Abi Dawood, Book 28, No. 3866: Narrated Saad).

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Seeking Forgiveness

Bism Illah wa as salaamu alaikum wa Rahmat Allah wa Barakatuh

I read a beautiful book "The Most Excellent Way to Attain Salvation" By Ibn Al Qayyim, mashaa'Allah. One of the things in there that was very important and useful was that the Prophet, salla Allahu alayhi wa sallam, is reported to have said, "AstaghfirAllah wa atoobu ilayk" over seventy times in just one sitting talking with his companions. In addition, it was reported that he would seek Allah, subhaana wa taala's, forgiveness over 100 times each day. This has made a huge impression on me because the Prophet's sins were forgiven already by Allah, subhaana wa taala. What an amazing example.

I do not say those words of istighfar anywhere near 100 times a day and I should be saying them far more times than our beautiful example of Islam, Prophet Muhammad, salla Allahu alayhi wa sallam. Now I'm looking for a way to incorporate at least 100 astaghfirAllah wa atoobu ilayk utterances in my day, as well as 100 subhaan Allah wa bihamdihi, subhaana Rabbi al atheem (to erase my sins insha'Allah). I'm thinking of a daily Islamic checklist on a white board; I can tick off when I finish something I want to include in my daily routine and dhikr/dua'/quran recitation. In this way, I can keep track and insha'Allah push myself to complete them every day. If I can get into the habit of saying the 100 istighfars while I am cooking, perhaps that will help. Then maybe the subhaanah's while I wash the dishes.

15 years ago, I used to sit with a dear friend who was an older sister and she would say astaghfirAllah over and over again. I wondered why she said it so much. Now I understand! May Allah forgive her and grant her the ultimate success and may we all benefit from this reminder - ameen.

Bi ithn'Allah our efforts to include this in our day will be met with success - ameen.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Olives and Olive Oil


The olive, a sign of peace and friendship throughout the world, is described in the Holy Qur'an in Surat At-Teen.

Found extensively in Asia minor, Palestine, Greece, Portugal, Spain, Turkey, Italy, North Africa, Algeria, Tunisia, the state of California in America, Mexico, Peru and southern Australia, the olive plant stretches up to three meters in height. Its leaves are bright green and very attractive; and its fruits are bright bluish or violet in color. Although olives consumed straight from the plant are very nutritious, they are not usually eaten due to their metallic taste. A pickled version is consumed largely in Europe. Olives are preserved in vinegar and imported from Spain, Italy, France, Turkey and Greece, and are favored in Europe and Arab countries. Olive oil is a good preservative for other foods such as sardines and other fish.

The use of olives goes back to ancient times. Vessels full of olive oil have been found, among other articles, during the excavation of ancient Egyptian graves. According to the scholars of Hadith, when the Great Flood subsided, the first thing to be seen on the earth was an olive tree.

According to Tirmidhi and Ibn Majah, Sayyid Al-Ansari narrated that the Prophet (pbuh) said, "Eat olive oil and massage it over your bodies since it is a holy (mubarak) tree."

According to Ibn Al-Juzi, Zanbi, Alqama Ibn Amir narrated that the Prophet (pbuh) said, "There is olive oil for you; eat it, massage it over your body, since it is effective for hemorrhoids." Basoor reported that Aqba Ibn Amir narrated that the Prophet (pbuh) stated, "You have the olive oil from this Holy (mubarak) tree; treat yourself with this, since it cures the anal fissure." Abu Na'im reported that Abu Hurayrah narrated that the Prophet (pbuh) stated, "Eat the olive oil and apply it (locally), since there is cure for seventy diseases in it, [and] one of them is leprosy."


Olive oil has a place in pharmacology in the U.S.A. and Britain. Both of these countries have attributed prime importance to olive oil in the treatment of various ailments, and have fixed standard parameters to evaluate its purity.

It contains palmatic acid, oleic acid, linoleic acid, steanic acid, myristic acid and glycerides. In this case, it is not dissolved in water but in alcohol, ether, chloroform and liquid paraffin.
The adulterant very often used in the olive oils found on the market is the seeds of the tea plant, arachis oil. Sometimes machine gun oil and refined machine oil are also found in it.

According to Ibn Al-Qayyim, the red colored oil is better than the blackish one. Its therapeutic uses are:

-It gives exuberance to the facial complexion.
-Prevention against poisons.
-Regulates the digestive process.
-Expels intestinal parasites.
-A good tonic, making the hair healthy, shiny and makes it stronger. Adds luster.
-A massage of olive oil with ordinary salt over the gums is a remedy for several diseases of the gums and teeth.
-Local application of olive oil or the water extracted from the crushed olive oil leaves is effective on boils, rashes and itching.
-Chronic ulcers and boils, which are difficult to heal, are healed with olive oil when applied locally.
-According to Zahbi, it strengthens the hair and body; hence can be used as a good tonic and for delaying the aging process.
-It helps raise a low libido.
-A combination of normal saline and olive oil is highly effective in burns.
-A soak of olive leaves in water is effective against mouth and lip ulcers, and dermatitis due to allergies.
-The concentrated watery solution of the extract of olive leaves and fruits is very effective against dental cavities and leukoplaquea in the mouth.
-This solution is applied along with vinegar for alopecia to enhance hair growth.
-It is also stated that the local application of this extract removes the scars of small pox and boils.
-Ground olive seeds mixed with butter is effective on brittle nails.
-Pickles prepared from olives are a good appetizer, and stop constipation.
-Its crushed leaves can be applied locally to check excessive perspiration.
-The water extracted from the leaves along with honey is used for ear drops and is effective in various ear ailments. The oil procured by burning the wood of the olive branch is effective against all fungal infections, e.g., ringworm, tenia, versicolor in addition to eczema, psoriasis, dandruff and alopecia.
-Applying olive oil on the scalp is highly effective against dandruff.
-It causes hair growth and reduces hair loss. The application of olive oil in the eyes relieves inflammation.
-A massage of olive oil all over the body tones up the muscles and organs, and relieves muscular pain.
-Some physicians also advocate a massage of olive oil for epilepsy.
-It relieves the sciatica and arthritis.

Ointment prepared from olive oil has very good healing agents:

-It heals the sinuses and fistuli very quickly.
-If taken internally, 25ml of olive oil mixed with 250ml of barley water is highly effective against chronic constipation.
-It is a good diuretic; hence is used in ascites.
-It removes kidney stones.
-In view of the research carried out in the U.S. and Britain, one concludes that it is good nourishment, particularly for kidney ailments where an intake of nitrogen containing protein is contraindicated.
-We mentioned already that the Prophet (pbuh) stated that it is a good remedy for anal fissure. Hence, patients were advised to take two spoonfuls of olive oil at bedtime and an ointment was applied on the fissure locally before sleeping and in the morning. The ointment is prepared from eight spoonfuls of olive oil and two spoonfuls of ground henna leaves.
-Its combination with other prescribed drugs of Prophetic Medicine is a good remedy for psoriasis and eczema.
-The impressions of several doctors practicing in Middle East and North Africa reveal that gastro-intestinal cancer is not detected among those who are used to consuming olive oil. Japanese doctors also endorse this, and have the opinion that olive oil prevents the incidence of cancer in the gastro-intestinal tract.

Monday, April 11, 2011

The Manners of Welcoming the Newborn Child

Our Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) was a living example, educating, cultivating the Muslims upon the practices of Islaam, teaching them how to worship their Lord in the best of ways.

Children are a source of delight and an adornment for the world granted by Allaah to their parents, they give vigour to the hearts, joy to the souls, pleasure to the eyes. They are the fruit from whom good is to be hoped for when they frequently supplicate:

"Our Lord! Bestow on them your Mercy as they did bring me up when I was small"

and they are the ones in every nation upon whom hope for the future lies, and they are the youth of tomorrow upon whose shoulders the call to Islaam is carried. Indeed Islaam has indeed elevated the status of children and has laid down manners for their treatment relating to all their affairs and each stage of their and from these are the manners for welcoming their arrival in this life.

Our Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) was a living example, educating, cultivating the Muslims upon the practices of Islaam, teaching them how to worship their Lord in the best of ways. But a number of Muslims have strayed from his pure teachings and have substituted that which is gold for that which worthless.

So here are the manners the Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) taught us with regards our new-born.

Encouragement to have Children

Allaah says, "So now have sexual relations with them,, and seek that which Allaah has ordained for you."

And the Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said, "Marry the loving and fertile because through you, I will compete with the nations for superiority in numbers"(Abu Dawood)

And it is important that the Parents bring up their children upon righteousness, so that the Parents will benefit from them during their lives and after their death. Allaah's Messenger (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said,

"A servant will have his rank raised and will say, 'O my Lord how has this come about for me?' He says, 'through your sons after you seeking forgiveness for you'"(ibn Maajah)

Know that what has preceded applies equally to both boys and girls, and indeed Islaam has encouraged the bringing up of girls, and Allaah condemns those that are distressed at the birth of a girl, and the Messenger (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) came elevating the status of this gift from Allaah,

"whoever takes care of two girls until they reach adulthood - he and I will come together on the Day of Resurrection (like this) - and he interlaced his two fingers"(Muslim) meaning in Paradise. So can their be a greater honour given to daughters?!

Giving the good news of the Birth

The near of kin who are anxiously waiting should be informed so that they can stop worrying and congratulate the parents and supplicate for the baby. Allaah mentions this good news being conveyed to a number of His Prophets, from them Zakariyyah of his son Yahya,

"Then the angels called him, while he was standing in prayer in a private room (saying), 'Allaah gives you glad tidings of Yahya'"

The Tahneek

This means to softening a date and then rubbing the palate of the new-born with it just after the birth or soon after. This is done by putting a piece of the softened date on the finger and rubbing it from left to right in the mouth of the baby.

Ibn Hajr said, "if one is not able to find a dry date, then a fresh date should be used, and if that is not available then anything sweet." (Fath 9/588)

It is not essential to chew the date rather it may be softened in any way. The action of chewing as reported in the sunnah was something specific to the Messenger (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) due to the blessings that
Allaah had placed in his saliva.

It is done by the father or the mother or anyone from the People of Knowledge whose supplication is hoped would be accepted. So he should perform tahneek and supplicate for the child as was the practice of the Companions.

Imaam Nawawee says, " scholars are agreed upon the recommendation of performing tahneek upon the baby after it's birth." (Sharh Saheeh Muslim 4/122)

Aaishah (ra) reports, "new-born children used to be brought to the Messenger of Allaah and he would supplicate for blessings for them, and rub a chewed date upon their palate." (Muslim)

Naming the child

The baby may be named on the day of it's birth or later on the seventh day or past the seventh day, as this is what is clear after study of all the evidences from the sunnah.

It is the father or the mother who chose the name for the baby. If they differ amongst themselves then it is the father who has the choice, he may name it himself or give his wife the right to choose. The fact that this is the right of the father is shown by the principle that the child is ascribed and attributed to the father, as Allaah says,

"Call them (adopted sons) by (the names of) their fathers, that is more just in the Sight of Allaah"

It is also allowed for the parents to allow others to name the child, since our Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) used to name some of the children of his Companions.

The name should carry a good and praiseworthy meaning as the Messenger (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said,

"On the Day of Resurrection, you will be called by your names and your fathers names, so make your names good." (Abu Dawood)

It is recommended to call oneself a servant of Allaah (Abdullaah) or the servant of any of the names of Allaah. Then it is recommended to name a child after a prophet, due to the hadeeth,

"call yourselves by the names of the Prophets" (Abu Dawood)

and the hadeeth,

"a son was born to me this night and I called him after my forefather Ibraaheem" (Muslim)

Then it is recommended to name the child after any pious person in the hope that it will become like him/her. Then it is recommended to name by any name which has good meaning.

It is forbidden to name a child with a name that denote servitude to other than Allaah, for example Abd an-Nabi, Abd ar-Rasool etc, just as it is forbidden to name them with names that are particular to the Unbelievers like George, Michael, Susan etc.

The names of tyrants and evil personalities should be avoided such as Fir'awn, Qaroon, Abu Lahab etc.. Likewise it is disliked to name with the names of the Surahs of the Qur'aan like 'Taa Haa' or 'Yaa Seen' as is reported from Imaam Maalik and others. There is no authentic hadeeth which ascribes the above two as being names of the Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam).

The Aqeeqah

After the seventh day of the arrival of the new-born, as a form of welcome for it and to give thanks to the One who gave the blessings, it is prescribed to slaughter a sheep. The Messenger (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said,

"Every child is in pledge for it's Aqeeqah which is sacrificed for it on its seventh day, and it is named on it, and its head is shaved" (Abu Dawood)

If the new-born is a boy then two sheep are to be sacrificed, and if it is a girl then one sheep. This is the position of the majority of the scholars and Companions. The Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said,

"for the boy two equal sheep, and for the girl, a single sheep." (Ibn Maajah)

So it is permissible to sacrifice the male or female sheep or goat, and this is best. As for sacrificing other animals then the scholars have differed over this.

The sacrifice should be done by the father or a close relative, for our Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) performed the Aqeeqah for his two grandsons. It is also obligatory to mention the name of Allaah over it while sacrificing, and if a close relative is performing the Aqeeqah then he should add, 'this aqeeqah is the Aqeeqah of so and so' mentioning the name of the person on whose behalf he is performing the aqeeqah, as is reported in the hadeeth related by al-Bayhaqee.

The meat of the sacrifice may be distributed cooked or uncooked,, but it is preferred that it should be cooked as this leads to greater blessing as mentioned by a group of the scholars.

Shaving the baby's head

On the seventh day after the birth the head of the baby should be shaved. So when al-Hasan was born the Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) told his daughter, Faatima (RA),

"shave his head and give the weight of his hair in silver to the poor" (Ahmad)

The right side of the head should be shaved first, then the left as mentioned in the hadeeth,

"shave, and he indicated to the right side of his head, and then the left" (Muslim)

It is not permissible to shave a part of the head and leave a part, as this was prohibited by the Messenger (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) as reported by al-Bukhaaree. The strongest view seems to be that the head of the boy or the girl should be shaved, as is reported that Faatimah weighed the hair of her daughter (Muwatta) but the scholars differ on this, and Allaah knows best.

The shaving should be done after the sacrifice, and our pious predecessors liked to rub some perfume over the baby's head after the shaving.Then it is prescribed to give the value of the baby's weight of hair in silver in charity, and it is recommended to give this charity on the seventh day also, but it is not necessary to do so, and may be delayed.


It is prescribed that the boy be circumcised, it is recommended that the circumcision take place on the seventh day, but it is obligatory to circumcise before the boy reaches puberty.

Friday, March 11, 2011

E-Book: Minhaj al Muslim in Arabic

Bism Illah wa as salaam alaykum wa Rahmat Allah wa Barakatuh.

We have the English version of the beautiful book, Minhaj al Muslim. It is a treasure chest outlining how we can live according to the Sunnah in virtually every aspect of our lives. For those who read Arabic, here is the link to the book in Arabic. Over time, I will be posting different sections of the book in English, so we can all benefit bi ithn Illah, taala.

Minhaj Al Muslim (Arabic)

E-Book: Some of the Manners of the Prophet

Bism Illah wa as salaamu alaykum wa Rahmat Allah wa Barakatuh.

Whenever I come across a decent e-book on the Sunnah, I will post it on the blog. Inshaa'Allah, we can build up a nice library over time, to refer back to and draw beneficial guidance and reminders from.

This is a short book, only 32 pages, about some of the exemplary and beautiful manners of our beloved Prophet, salla Allahu alayhi wa sallam.

Some of the Manners of the Prophet

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Sunnah of Water Usage

As salaamu alaikum wa Rahmat Allah wa Barakatuh

A few years ago, we had a problem with our water heating system and had to boil water to wash with for a week or so, mashaa'Allah. Although we did fill the bathtub for the children initially, I had a little brainwave that we could fill a couple of two gallon containers with water mixed to the right temperature and use a cup to pour it over our bodies. From the first time I did it, I felt I was going back to a strong Sunnah of our Prophet, salla Allahu alayhi wa sallam. Oh, my container wasn't a earthen jug or bowl  - it was plastic - but the amount of water I used and the way I made my ghusl reminded me of the ahadith I had read of our beloved Prophet making ghusl from a jug... in fact, sharing the jug with his wife, mashaa'Allah.

Anas said, "The Prophet, upon whom be peace, used to perform ghusl (the complete bathing) with a sa'a of water (1.616 cm) 3 to 5 madd (each 4 madd equals one sa'a). He also used to make ablution with one madd (404 cm) of water." (Related by al-Bukhari and Musim.) Complete bathing would use about 1 bucket of water and ablution, 2 handfuls inshaa'Allah.

'Ubaidullah ibn Abu Yazid narrated that a man asked Ibn 'Abbas, "How much water is sufficient for ghusl?" He answered, "One madd." "And how much is sufficient for ghusl?" He said, "One sa'a." The man said, "That is not sufficient for me." "Ibn 'Abbas said, "No? It was sufficient for one better than you, the Messenger of Allah, upon whom be peace." (Related by Ahmad, al-Bazaar and at-Tabarani in al-Kabeer. Its narrators are trustworthy.)

'Abdullah ibn 'Umar narrated that the Messenger of Allah passed by Sa'd while he was performing ablution and said, "What is this extravagance, Sa'd?" He said, "Is there extravagance in the use of water?" He said, "Yes, even if you are at a flowing river." (Related by Ahmad and Ibn Majah with a weak chain.)

Extravagance is to use water without any benefit, like washing the parts more than three times. Ibn Shu'aib's hadith, quoted earlier, illustrates the point in question. 'Abdullah ibn Mughaffal narrated that he heard the Prophet say, "There will be people from my nation who will transgress in making supplications and in purifying themselves." (Related by Ahmad, Abu Dawud and an-Nasa'i.)

Says al-Bukhari, "The scholars do not like one to use water beyond what the Prophet, upon whom be peace, used for ablution."

Well, our water issue was fixed and we crept back into the usual way of using a good 15-30 gallons of water in the shower to bathe and leaving the water running to make wudhu. But I was never the same again about it; Allah, subhaana wa taala, had put an awareness in my heart about my use of water. I not only understood that it was wasteful, but I saw the worldwide situation where we have wasted water to such an extent that it is in short supply in many places and we are constantly told by environmentalists to conserve it. Subhaan Allah! Following the Sunnah is the most effective way to save our precious resources for the generations to come.
Since then, we have changed our approach to water usage. We can easily use the recommended amount of water to make ghusl. Periodically I keep a bowl beside the sink to regulate the use while making wudhu, too. I put two handfuls of water into the bowl and find my wudhu complete before the water is finished! Every now and then I take a bath, or have a long shower, but it is a luxury and I am conscious of the extravagance. Extravagance in comparison to my neighbors, friends, sisters, or relatives? No. Extravagance in comparison to our beloved Prophet, peace be upon him, and what he modeled for us.

There are a few other things I've done to curb my water wastage. I wash the dishes with a soapy sponge and  then rinse them off with slow running cold water. I turn on the shower for a moment to wet myself, then suds up and turn the water back on just to rinse off. I set the tap to a slow trickle, to minimize waste during wudhu and hand washing. If one of the children doesn't finish their water and it hasn't been covered over, I use it for watering plants instead of simply throwing it down the drain.

Oh, you will find plenty of information on the Internet about the importance of water conservation and how to conserve. The issue is, it is Sunnah.