Never losing the hope… – By Fareed Ahmed

The arabic word for sadness or grief is “Gham” – derived from the word “Ghaamama (the cloud) ” . Although there`s no apparent relationship between sadness and cloud, however there`s a hidden one. Just like a cloud blocks all the sun-shine coming down to earth, sadness or grief in a way or other also acts as a stumbling block for a man`s positive energy and performance.

It is very natural that when a person is happy and everything is going according to his whims and desires, his own wishful thinking, his performance is at it`s peak, but when he is tested or a calamity strikes him, he becomes pessimistic and isn`t able to give a good performance.
The real test lies in giving a good performance despite being in stress and crisis, despite failing in exams over and over again, despite having a fight with the fellow colleague or losing the beloved ones.

Click the link to continue…

Never losing the hope….


19 amazing fatherhood lessons for YOU!

As Muslims we often hear the virtues of being a mother and the benefits that kids bring to them. While discussing it, fatherhood is often ignored and motherhood is what is emphasized. So, I decided to compile a list of some lessons that I’ve learnt of fatherhood that children bring with them. All the fathers-to-be and new fathers will find it beneficial insha’Allah and should try to fill in the necessary gaps proactively for the better future of their children!

So once you’re a father, you’ll find the following things happenings:

  1. Your love for your spouse has deepened
  2. You have to take responsibility of not only your own action but also your family’s
  3. You have to choose baby’s sleep time to get some rest. He is too small to follow your routine
  4. Even if you start following your infant’s sleep cycle, you have to strive hard to get a better sleep 😛
  5. Now you starts feeling older 
  6. You have multiple jobs now. One that is outside your house, earning money for the family, and the other with your cute little angel at home
  7. The unique feeling you get when your baby looks at you and smiles
  8. You realize the hardship that your parents have gone through, skipped sleep, enjoyed cramps in their biceps carrying you at nights for sleep, declining all the fun with friends because they were busy with you.
  9. Time passes too quickly. You angel’s birth feels moments ago
  10. Technically, you have lesser time to spend with you spouse, but quality of that time is increased Alhamdulillah
  11. Most of the time you’re busy in nurturing your kid, either physically, or spiritually by talking to your wife about his upbringing, values and character
  12. You are future oriented. You think proactively
  13. You are planning your child’s schooling according to Islamic values and planning for him to become a Hafiz and Qaari of Al-Furqan (the differentiator between the right and the wrong, another name of Qur’an)
  14. You start seeing life as an opportunity to shape up a human being, to inspire a complete nation (through his progeny) to become Allah’s slave and you and your wife becoming the leaders of Muttaqoon yourself
  15. You find it difficult to manage your relationship with your wife, why because now she has two babies to handle, you and your baby! She’s fragile so handle with care 😉
  16. Your wife loves you even more, for helping her out in the baby chores, makes du’aa for you, and prays for you to stay with him till the end
  17. All your childish, immature and irresponsible behavior is gone. You have to be a DAD now and you need to be responsible. Expect your kid to be exactly like you
  18. You are more concerned about savings now, because living in an expensive era, its important when it comes to good education and Islamic nurturing of your kids
  19. Now you‘re remembering Allah SWT and his commandments more. You have a journey to walk with you family. Your journey back to home, to Jannah!

Alhamdulillah I have found my experience to be life changing. Do you find yours? Please share more lessons with me so that I can learn even more 🙂



The writer is a software engineer and can be contacted at

Writing Wasiyah – A Forgotton Sunnah

“I have seen several families fighting over the issues of Virasat (inheritance) and Wasiyah (will) after the death of important people from among them. Wouldn’t it be great if people would follow the commandments of Allah in such affairs? There would be no fights if the wealth of the deceased was distributed according to the law of inheritance laid out in Islam. If the deceased left a will explaining each aspect in detail, there would be no dispute over family issues. There would be so much ease in fulfilling the missed obligations, promises and other commitments of the deceased by his surviving family.”

Click here to continue reading, Writing Wasiyah – A Forgotton Sunnah

Balancing the equation – home chores

The best thing about getting married is partnership, isn’t it? Ask those who are married. Marriage may survive without money but cannot survive without the mutual partnership. Newly married couples enjoy their lives in the most halal way as Allah states in the Quran,  هُنَّ لِبَاسٌ لَّكُمْ وَأَنتُمْ لِبَاسٌ لَّهُنَّ, 2:187  they are each other libas (garments), covering each others physically, covering each other faults and helping each other coping up with the external damaging factors, subhanAllah what great wisdom. [1]

Whilst they enjoy, they don’t realize the change they have not only brought in their lives but also in the lives of their parents and home buddies. If we see it from the groom’s perspective, before marriage, he just have to take care of his family and obey the parents. After marriage, he has to take care of his wife as well, keeping in view that she has come to live besides all of his negitive and bad habits, leaving her home and parents, far away.

In such situations, there may arrise conflict between the husband and wife or between the wife and the husband’s family, difference of opinion in doing things. Over kitchen affairs, may be over children, may be over how to handle the home chores, how to arrange and schedule daily tasks, handling the servants etc. In such cases, everyone especially the bride must understand that every home has some ways to work and the norms are pre-defined. One should try to adapt those even if there is some discomfort.

In such circumstances, comes the most important role of the husband. He has to balance between the wife and the mother. Following are some tips and tricks that I have observed through different experiences from my life and from the lives of others:

  • Never say no to your parents. Especially if it doesn’t harm your personal life. وَوَصَّيْنَا الْإِنسَانَ بِوَالِدَيْهِ حُسْنًا ۖ  “And We have enjoined on man to be good and dutiful to his parents”. [29:8] 

  • In case of conflict between wife and parents, listen to both sides carefully and analyze who’s right. إِنَّمَا الْمُؤْمِنُونَ إِخْوَةٌ فَأَصْلِحُوا بَيْنَ أَخَوَيْكُمْ “The believers are nothing else than brothers (in Islamic religion). So make reconciliation between your brothers” [49:10] 
  • If there happen to be any misunderstandings between the parties, then you’re the man you can really solve them. talk to each party separately and clear the misunderstanding by explaning. they won’t go mad on you insha’Allah. Trust me, they want someone to listen.
  • Love your wife much and unconditionally without scolding her and explain the importance of being good to the your family and its benefits. the Prophet said: “The best of you is the one who is best to his wife, and I am the best of you to my wives.” [] 
  • Love you parents unconditionally and lower your wings of humility over them no matter what. They are old now, they have no other choice apart from behaving they way they want to behave. They still love and care for you.  وَاخْفِضْ لَهُمَا جَنَاحَ الذُّلِّ مِنَ الرَّحْمَةِ وَقُل رَّبِّ ارْحَمْهُمَا كَمَا رَبَّيَانِي صَغِيرًا “And lower unto them the wing of submission and humility through mercy, and say: “My Lord! Bestow on them Your Mercy as they did bring me up when I was small.” [17:24] 
  • Make everyone understand that things shouldn’t be based on the way they are carried out, rather they should be based on results. Let them sit together and decide the outputs of things on which there is a conflict, as long as everyone is agreed upon the output, they do not have to fight on how things get done insha’Allah. [Principle taken from the book 7 Habits of highly effective people] 

  • Forgive them and have no grudges. وَإِن تَعْفُوا وَتَصْفَحُوا وَتَغْفِرُوا فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ غَفُورٌ رَّحِيمٌ But if you pardon (them) and overlook, and forgive (their faults), then verily, Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful. [64:14]

May Allah make our homes among the gardens of Paradise and make our wives and children the coolness of our eyes.

[1] See Tafsir Ibn e Kathir 2:187 for details

7 Habits of Highly Successful BELIEVERS

Every Muslim will be successful on the day of Judgment when Allah SWT will judge them according to their deeds. On that day there will be some who will be given their account in their right hand, having lit faces and smiling, rejoicing, because of the path they took in their life. They traded their lives in this world for the life in the Hereafter for Jannah. Such are the SUCCESSFUL ones indeed. Some will be extremely worried, weeping, crying, frustrated and anguished while receiving their account of deeds in their left hand. They wasted their lives in this world and such are the real losers.

Allah SWT has beautiful explained in the Quran in Surah Mo’minon, not just about the believers, BUT about the SUCCESSFUL believers. Not only they passed the test but they succeeded with a distinction in good deeds. Allah says in the very first ayah

قَدْ أَفْلَحَ الْمُؤْمِنُون ,

successful indeed are the believers and then the 7 habits, these highly successful believers have.

First three habits are related to private victory and self purification. While remaining four gives us public victory, leading towards collaboration and shaping the society as a whole.

HABIT 01: Pray with Khashiyat

الَّذِينَ هُمْ فِي صَلَاتِهِمْ خَاشِعُونَ

Those who offer their Salat (prayers) with all solemnity and full submissiveness.


`Ali bin Abi Talhah reported that Ibn `Abbas said: “(Khashi`un) means those with fear and with tranquillity.”  Khushu` in prayer is only attained by the one who has emptied his heart totally, who does not pay attention to anything else besides it, and who prefers it above all else. At that point it becomes a delight and a joy for eyes.

When these successful believers stand in prayer, they imagine Allah’s Greatness that He is the Creator of everything that exists. The one Allah who is above His Thrown and they are so small standing on this very mat prayer expressing their griefs and sorrows who already knows what is in their hearts. They pray as if they are watching Him or at least as if He is watching them.

HABIT 02: Turn away from Falsehood

وَالَّذِينَ هُمْ عَنِ اللَّغْوِ مُعْرِضُونَ

And those who turn away from Al-Laghw (dirty, false, evil vain talk, falsehood, and all that Allah has forbidden).

turn away

Al-Laghw refers to falsehood, which includes Shirk and sin, and any words or deeds that are of no benefit. As Allah says: وَإِذَا مَرُّواْ بِاللَّغْوِ مَرُّواْ كِراماً (And if they pass by Al-Laghw, they pass by it with dignity)﴿25:72﴾. Qatadah said: “By Allah, there came to them from Allah that which kept them away from that (evil).”

A Successful believer turns himself away from sins, open and secret, he turns away from what doesn’t concern him, in which there is no benefit. He has a nice company, friends that support him in Deen, study it together, help the poor and needy, treat their families well behaved. He follows Islamic law in his business transactions and stand firm for justice in the society.

HABIT 03: Give obligatory charity – Zakat

وَالَّذِينَ هُمْ لِلزَّكَاةِ فَاعِلُونَ

And those who pay the Zakat .


In Islam, our wealth is considered to be the property of Allah. It is a trust we are given in order to test us how do we spend from it. One’s wealth is not be spent wastefully and one shouldn’t be a spendthrift. Through Zakat Allah not only established a complete socio-economic system but also established the basis of eliminating poverty from an Islamic state.

History is a witness over this fact that Muslims after the proper establishment of Islamic Khilafat used to carry their zakat in their hands to find someone to give but couldn’t find one. Why, because those people who took zakat in the years before were masha’Allah started their businesses and started earning their livelyhood. People no more needed it and wealth was in abundance.

A Succesful believers always calculate the right amount of zakat and give it to the most deserving people (as defined in the Quran 9:60). They don’t give it thinking it a burden but give it and thank Allah SWT that He gave them an opportunity to be wealthy and to help his fellow Muslim brothers.

HABIT 04: Be Modest

وَالَّذِينَ هُمْ لِفُرُوجِهِمْ حَافِظُونَ

And who guard their modesty –


‘Those who guard their modesty’ means who protect their private parts from unlawful actions and do not do that which Allah has forbidden;

The era which we live in has made fawahish (all sorts of unchaste things) extremely accessible and easy. You don’t have to actually find a hole to peep in someone’s bedroom and their private affairs, rather movies, tv channels, internet have it all. The believers are forced to see it even if we don’t want to. You sign in your email you have it, you browse the internet for islamic lecture you have it, no matter how much we try, its extremely hard to stay away from the dirty world.

That is why, a successful believer guards his modesty, literally. He makes sure he doesn’t get sucked up into a situation when he can’t control things. He does not wander in the market for no reason, he lowers his gaze, he keeps reminding themselves that Allah is watchful over him all the time. He keeps himself modest. Next habit elaborates a little about how to be modest and how exactly can he utilize his natural instincts.

HABIT 05: Utilize your natural instinct in a positive way

إِلَّا عَلَىٰ أَزْوَاجِهِمْ أَوْ مَا مَلَكَتْ أَيْمَانُهُمْ فَإِنَّهُمْ غَيْرُ مَلُومِينَ. فَمَنِ ابْتَغَىٰ وَرَاءَ ذَٰلِكَ فَأُولَٰئِكَ هُمُ الْعَادُونَ

Except from their wives or (the captives and slaves) that their right hands possess, for then, they are free from blame; But whoever seeks beyond that, then those are the transgressors;


This habit is the post-requisite of habit 04. Once a believer starts guarding his modesty he needs to utilize his natural sexual instincts in a positive and a Halal way that Allah has prescribed.

Allah has forbidden; fornication and homosexuality, and do not approach anyone except the wives whom Allah has made permissible for them or their right hand possessions from the captives. One who seeks what Allah has made permissible for him is not to be blamed and there is no sin on him.

Many of our teenagers resort to masturbation as a way to release ourselves from the frustration that has been built and bad friends may pressurize their involvement in other illegal and immoral acts. Such brothers and sisters should know that Allah has forbidden such acts and should fear Him in this regards. If they have the means to get married and provide for a family than they should marry a pious believer. Otherwise they should fast and eliminate all sources of shameful activities. Parents should pro-actively eliminate the risks of such things in their homes and should try to provide their kids a healthy environment insha’Allah.

HABIT 06: Guard your trusts and promises

وَالَّذِينَ هُمْ لِأَمَانَاتِهِمْ وَعَهْدِهِمْ رَاعُونَ

Those who are faithfully true to their Amanat (all the duties which Allah has ordained, honesty, moral responsibility and trusts etc.) and to their covenants;


When they are entrusted with something, they do not betray that trust, but they fulfill it, and when they make a promise or make a pledge, they are true to their word.

A Muslim never breaks his promise. This is extremely important when it comes to public victory. Once you start fulfilling your commitments you’ll see a drastic change in yourself and also in the people around you. Your center of influence would drastically increase. Remember, keeping up your promises means reaching somewhere at the given time, attending to the requests of your parents that you told them you’ll do it, fulfilling your moral social and economical duties and staying true to the trusts that you’ve been given. A wise saying goes something like:

Action speaks louder than words

HABIT 07: Establish prayer

وَالَّذِينَ هُمْ عَلَىٰ صَلَوَاتِهِمْ يُحَافِظُونَ

And those who strictly guard their Salawat (prayers)


means, they persistently offer their prayers at their appointed times,

Allow me to mention the status of Jihad; one who participates in the battle for the love of Allah and for His Deen. If a believer gets martyred in Jihad, eternal paradise will be his. How big is the status of Jihad! Allow me to mention the status of taking care of one’s old parents. Prophet SalAllahu alaihi wassalam mentioned Jannah as the reward for taking care of them. But I want you to read the following hadith and PONDER:

Ibn Mas`ud said: “I asked the Messenger of Allah , `O Messenger of Allah, which deed is most beloved to Allah’ He said,

«الصَّلَاةُ عَلَى وَقْتِهَا»

(Prayer at the appointed time.) I said, `Then what’ He said,

«بِرُّ الْوَالِدَيْن»

(Kindness to one’s parents. ) I said, `Then what’ He said,

«الْجِهَادُ فِي سَبِيلِ الله»

(Jihad in the way of Allah.) It was recorded in the Two Sahihs.

SubhanAllah. The prayer is so light and easy and so much better than other extremely difficult and big things. SubhanAllah what a great reward. Why? Because prayer is the best way to connect to Allah SWT, the Creator and Sustainer of the Universe. Once a believer establishes his prayer five times a day, a do zikr proved by the Sunnah of RasulAllah SalAllahu alaihi wassalm, Allah removes so many minor sins from him without even repenting and doing istaghfar. May Allah make us establish prayer.

Once we implement these 7 habits, insha’Allah, we will be like what Allah explains in the Quran in the upcoming ayah:

أُولَٰئِكَ هُمُ الْوَارِثُونَ الَّذِينَ يَرِثُونَ الْفِرْدَوْسَ هُمْ فِيهَا خَالِدُونَ

These are indeed the inheritors. Who shall inherit the Firdaus (Paradise). They shall dwell therein forever.

May Allah make us among the people of Paradise. Ameen ya Rab ul alamin.


I am planning a workshop on this topic insha’Allah. Keep yourself updated through


Quoted text are excerpts from Surah al Mo’minoon Ayah 1 – 11, Tafsir Ibn e Kathir.

Want it! Want it bad!


If you want it
And you want it bad..

You’ll have it! (Insha’Allah)

Being Muslims, we have been taught one of the greatest lessons of being successful which is consistency in deeds. That’s where success lies in this dunya (and akhirah as well):

RasolAllah salallahu alaihi wasallam  said:

“The acts most pleasing to Allah are those which are done continuously, even if they are small.”
[Aisha: Sahib Muslim 783 b;

Some of the awesome ways to reduce your tension towards your fatness, ugliness and baldness!

Read on to know…
Question : Assalamualaikum. My daughter is a tall and a broad girl. She is also dark and heavy. It is difficult to get a groom. My relatives insist that she must grow thin and trim herself. She says ” I am as Allah has made me ! ” She refuses to burden herself by under-going starvation. She finds the criticism by her relatives too bitter to digest. Can you please throw some light on it ?

Walaikumus-Salam..The definition of beauty has changed after the advent of fancy dolls like Cinderellas, Barbie Dolls, Film actresses and some critics among our selves. Otherwise before that, a woman was graded on her capacity to run the house. How talented was she in the kitchen. How good is she in building relations with her inlaws etc. Today, she is graded by her shapes and looks, how much she earns and how educated is she ? This is feminism today ! Today’s feminism is more of Masculinity or macho-ism.

I agree with your daughter’s resistance to bow before cultural demands. She is right when she says ” I am as Allah has made me ” It is difficult to shed a few kilos from your body and it is more difficult to keep that lost weight away. It may return back. The problem is not with your daughter but the problem is with your relatives too. Why should they demoralize a young girl who has no fault of her in shaping her looks ? Instead of that, they should rather assure her of good and look for a suitable match for her. An overwhelming majority of girls fall in the category of below average looking girl if you use the the Barbies and Cinderellas as parameter. Should they remain unmarried ?

I tell you, it is difficult to get a good boy even if your daughter is fair tall and slim. The reason ? Then she too will need a boy too rich or high in status and an independent house. The reason? Because there are critics and the advisers around you to assure you of a good boy because your daughter is beautiful! . Marrying your daughter to a rich and a boy with a good status is not enough to guarantee a happiness. Happiness is a life long effort. Fatima the daughter of Prophet (pbuh) was happy with her poor husband Ali r.a. Her hard life made her among those few women whose faith was a complete faith. A girl married to a rich boy can also be unhappy and a girl married to an average earning boy can also be happy. A boy marrying a girl with average looks or below average looks can also be happy and keep her family happy. This does not mean that one should over look the financial position in totto. NO. It is essential to earn halal but do not chase richness too much.

The best option is to empower our girls with a positive attitude towards their looks and shapes and assure them of a happy life and encourage them to be Grateful to Allah for what He has given them. Let them not run in rat race of slim and fairness…

Nisaar Nadiadwala can be responded at

CHOOSING A CAREER : QnA by an enthusiastic brother! – By Mohammad Ali

Man on top of mountain. Conceptual design.

Bismillah, in the words of Br. Mohammad Ali, as follows:

Asalam o alaykum wr wb

A good brother asked me a question related to career counselling. Its a very good question and there is a good message for everyone in this question, therefore im pasting it here, and also im replying this question here as i believe most people going through this age have such questions.
As salam o alaikum Brother Ali
My name as you know already is …… and i am 18 years, I am currently preparing for 2nd years board exams (Federal board ) and having aspirations to join either NUST,PIEAS or UET for Mechanical engineering.
As you yourself have done ME through GIKI and gone through the phase i am going through so i ask you to advise me over some issues i am encountering as you yourself might have tackled them out.
1.Time management and getting an absolute concentration when studying
( I can hardly sit for 2 hrs consecutively )
2.How to prepare for University admission tests . Will you recommend academy for it ? How you did that for yourself ?
Alhamdulillah i have scored 934 marks in Metric and 424 in F.S.c (Part 1) Physics and Maths are my Favorite subjects and Chemistry is hmmmahh Not likely my good hold .
I also want to tell you that my plans for opting higher studies is not only for getting a good job but also to be an example among the people that ISLAM is compatible with every aspect of life and modernization ; its not a barrier on the way to advancement . I also pray that May ALLAH give me taufeeq to shorten the barrier between the upcoming modern youth (Holding Secularistic and athiestic views etc) and the young scholars and daaee’s of today !
I would also make mention of that you are one of the person (though we dont know each other properly) whose advice i can not reject and whose words and moral teachings i always try to follow . May ALLAH increase you in khair and give you more taufeeq ! Jazakumullahu khairan !


1- First of all, my advice to all such youngsters going through this age is to make their intention like yours. i-e to serve Islam through whatever beneficial knowledge you get. For ive witnessed that if the intention is to do it for Islam and the focus is Allah’s raza in the Hereafter, then all affairs become easy and whatever u do constitutes barakah. As Prophet (pbuh) said:
Verily, whoever takes the Hereafter as is his concern, Allah makes his richness in his heart and makes his affairs easy and this worldly life will come to him forced. And whoever has this worldly life as his concern, Allah makes his poverty between his eyes and makes his affair difficult and he will not gain from this worldly life but only what is destined for him.” (Ibn Majah. Declared as Sahih by Al Albani)

2- Secondly, avoid blind following of friends and peers. Do not go where ur friends going, nor do what they doing. First see through which field you can benefit Islam the most. Then just do an assessment of yourself and see your interests. Then discuss with experienced and mature people (friends and peers do not come in experienced and mature people).

3- If you ask me, i do not advise to do engineering. Because engineers, though enjoy a good social status in our society and people say wow an engineer, but in reality engineer is a white collar slave. The job nature of an engineer is too demanding and literally sucks the life blood outta you. I would advise any young brother to be a doctor, or go to teaching side, or social sciences (all leadership positions are held by social scientists), or administrative positions in public sector by doing css, pms etc.

4- Okay if you wanna do engineering, then atleast do masters in it and then go to teaching side.

5- Time management and concentration:
Its a great sign that ur thinking abt it at such a time and taking it seriously. Well brother, all my life ive been a very non serious student. But then i learned my lessons. Css taught me lots of things. I was a guy who used to run from books. Anyways, alhamdulilah, during preparation of css, i would sit for 5 hours continuously (and sometimes more than that) and read a book with full concentration. Thats how it all changed by Allah’s grace. How to do it?
(i) Try to be away from virtual world esp fb as much as u can. Only use when very necessary. Relax urself with nature and exercise (exercise helps a lot. Check this out: When you cut down ur interaction with virtual world, you’ll be amazed to see how much time u get.
(ii) When you study, kill all distractions. The best place to study is masjid. Trust me. Try it. Then library. Then a quiet room where no internet, pc etc. Switch off cell phone as well.
(iii) Its very important that what u read, u build interest in it. So read it with the intention that all good knowledge is from Allah Almighty and u must learn this knowledge and use it for good.
(iv) Make a time table. And try to follow it as much as u can. Organize urself. Keep your room clean and ur cupboard organized.
(v) Give challenges to yourself. Example : Today i will finish 100 pages of this book on every condition! Automatically u will see that u gain concentration cz of this challenge.
(vi) I do not advise continuous reading. 2 hr max is good, then take a break of 15-30 min. Do something refreshing. Then again 2 hrs. And go on as much as u can.

6 – How to prepare entry tests.
(i) Yes academy is fine because by going to academy u come to realise the competition when u see other students and this motivates u. Also academies keep taking mock tests (practice tests) so one becomes confident.
(ii) But i do not suggest academy for too long. Just learn the basics from academy and tats enough. Need not spend too much time in academies.

7- Some useful links:

7 great advices – Lessons of friendship by Umar bin Khattab RA

Indeed friendship is extremely valuable relationship in this world and it has to be valued. Like the famous quote, a friend is known by the company he keeps. Today I want to share 7 advices that Umar bin Khattab (May Allah be pleased with him) once gave to his fellows regarding friendship.

1. Do keep true friends and always remain in their company. Such friends will be a blessing for you and reason for respect in good times and helpers in your bad times.

2. Do not have a grudge against your brother (in Islam) by thinking evil about him until you are assured

3. Keep yourself away from your enemy

4. Be cautious about your friend except who is trustworthy. And only he is trustworthy who fears Allah

5. Don’t sit with a sinner else you will learn evil as well

6. Don’t give him your secret

7. Always seek advice from a person who fears Allah much.

Deduced from Seerat e Umar e Farooq, Published by Darussalam International publicationsfriendship