Islam Is God’s Recipe for Eternal Life
Islam guarantees human beings – all human beings who care to come to it – a most wonderful life in both worlds: here as well as hereafter.
How can it be otherwise, Islam being a life-giving system conferred as a boon by the maker of life on all life-forms that he creates? It is according to Islam that they all live out their lives, except human beings and some others, who have been given a measure of freedom and choice in whether or not to do so.
“Fiddunyaa hasanah wa fil aakhirati hasanah,” says the Qur’an, meaning “Hasanah” in this world and “Hasanah” in the next world. That means “Fun” here and “Fun” there, to borrow an American cultural expression.
“Fun” is a unique American expression for all things enjoyable. But when I use the expression “Fun,” I use it strictly to stand for only things that are good, nice, right, lawful, decent and, above all, Halaal fun.
The expression “Hasanah” thus stands for all things good, wonderful and salubrious. And what is life if not the potential repository of all “Hasanaat” – plural: all sorts of good and wonderful things in human life that come as blessings from God Almighty?
And what could be more self-evident than the fact that the essence of life is communication, successful communication: with oneself; with others; with the entire environment that envelops us from every direction?
Above all, what could be clearer than the fact that the secret to a happy life both here and hereafter is successful communication with the maker and master of the universe, God Almighty, himself?
That is why I say Islam is all about communication.
And Islam, of course, is all about the Qur’an, the best and finest and most complete communication, that the master of the world sent down through a prophet and messenger as a mercy to all his worlds.
So, communication done right is a mercy and a blessing from the Almighty. And the abuse and misuse of communication, especially to create mischief on earth and deprive God’s creation of its God-given rights and protections, is one of the worst forms of affront toward God Almighty.
The Qur’an refers to such egregious behavior as Zulm and declares it to be one of the things God dislikes most. For, Allah is God of love, mercy and Rahmat, and he sent his Rasul and messenger in this world as a harbinger and embodiment of his Rahmah to the worlds.
The Qur’an addresses the Prophet, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Salaam, thus: Wa maa arsalnaaka illaa rahmatal lil-‘aalameen.
Paraphrase: We sent you not, O our prophet and messenger Muhammad, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, except as an embodiment of our message of love and mercy to all the worlds.
Thus, life, Qur’an and communication together constitute a most amazing triple token of love and mercy from God the most high to humans who are among the most cherished and honored of his creation and slaves.
God Is Master and Humans Are His Slave!
What a master God is! And how privileged we are that he has honored us by making us his slaves!
And what an incredibly beautiful, merciful, honorable and ennobling form of master-slave relationship he established between himself and his creation, including human beings!
And how so many people around the world abused that beautiful master-slave relationship between themselves and the people they came to control and “enslave” through wars and otherwise!
And how sadly and grievously did so many cultures and civilizations exploit, abuse, massacre and even annihilate large segments of humanity by making them what they called their “slaves,” giving that expression a bad name forever.
Slave-Trade and Colonialism: Among the Darkest Periods of Human History
The latest of these abuses being the horrors of centuries of slave-trade in African men, women and children across the Atlantic; the wiping out of hundreds of peoples, nations and civilizations of the so-called “Indian” populations, communities and “tribes” in the Americas; and centuries of plunder, abuse and exploitation of the people, places, treasures and resources of the so-called Third World in the name of Colonialism.
This gruesome new chapter in the history of humanity began with the decline of Muslim power in Europe, such as it was, and the rise and global expansion of European nations, beginning at the end of the 15th Century. It was no coincidence that the age of European exploration began more or less during that period. Nor was it a coincidence that Columbus set sail Westward in 1492, which put him on course to the Americas, the very year in which Muslims rule in Spain formally ended.
As for Muslims, during the 1000 years of their world domination preceding that critical turning point in history in 1492, they had slaves too. But they treated their slaves with dignity and compassion, so much so that they made their slaves commanders, generals, scholars, courtiers, royal advisers, rulers and kings. Muslims even created slave dynasties that ruled over vast and powerful Muslim domains.
Thus, in general, Muslim treatment of their slaves was a little bit like God’s own treatment of his slaves – compassionate, respectful and honorable – and it was nothing like the treatment of the rest of the world of their slaves, especially the treatment of African slaves by European nations beginning with the fall of Muslim Spain.
The world would have been saved many unspeakable horrors and one of the saddest, cruelest, darkest and most disgraceful periods of its history if, beginning with the 16th Century, the newly rising nations, cultures and civilizations of the West had learned from Islam, or even emulated the example of the Muslims such as it was, in their treatment of the lands and peoples they conquered, colonized, controlled and enslaved.
What a different world it would have been!
Looking at Qur’an through Unbiased Eyes
Anyone, who is blessed to be able to look at the Qur’an with unbiased eyes, and study it with a mind and spirit untainted by the impurities of hate and prejudice, can readily see how the Qur’an is nothing less than direct communication from the master of the worlds to the worlds that he makes and manages.
|Next:||Islam and Muslims in Beautiful Caribbean|
|Previous:||“Mutual Aggression”: Human Nature and the Need for Divine Guidance|