Reviving What We Can of Allah’s Deen:
A Reaction to New Pasha Hour International
-- Live from America!
A Program about Islam, Muslims and the World -- Unlike Any!
Dr. Judy Kamalodeen
Allah’s Deen neither dies nor atrophies. It is fresh and complete forever. As it always was. And as it always will be.
But, we being human, our own personal connection with Allah’s Deen goes through all kinds of changes: as individuals as well as in our capacity as groups, organizations and societies.
The challenge that faces everyone everywhere is this: What are we all doing, as individuals, groups, organizations and societies, to revitalize -- revive as it were -- parts of Allah’s Deen that we find less vibrant than they should be.
From this point of view, our position should always be that nothing in Allah’s Deen should be disregarded or dismissed offhand as too trivial or too small or too insignificant. And that is where our work is now focused, along with all the other things that everyone of us is doing Working for Allah. By the Grace of Almighty Allah of course.
It is more than a year since Pasha Hour International -- Live from America! went off the air after an eventful lifespan of over 15 years I would say. We never really knew full well who listened and who didn’t, or how many, but one thing was undeniable. The program was exactly what it said it aimed to be: A Program about Islam, Muslims and the World -- Unlike Any!
Dr. Pasha, as a rule, did not say much about specific Muslim individuals, organizations, communities and societies, but everything he said using Qur’an and Hadith, and the models he built and explained on the air, would fit perfectly any individual or group or society that held that mirror in front of them.
So, when the program went off the air, and frankly not too many of us seemed to know at that time how to keep it from going off the air, everybody felt the loss. For, once again, there was nothing quite like that program to fill the void that its demise left behind.
As a result, when the idea was mooted that maybe we should revive that program, no matter in how limited a way, there was no option for us but to say Labbaika! and jump on the bandwagon. And then there it was, all of a sudden, the New Pasha Hour International, albeit targeting a much narrower and smaller audience.
And this particular program I am talking about, on February 15, 2020, was a full two-hour program and every inch a Pasha Hour International. And as it always claimed “Unlike Any.”
That means whatever else you may or may not say about this program, one thing is certain: It is unlike anything I have ever heard before.
All two hours of the program, what happened to the time, or where it went, I had no idea. Nor did any of the other attendees.
The program started, and everybody totally froze in complete silence and rapt attention.
Alhamdulillah! Allahu Akbar! Subhanallah! That is how I can summarize our experiences and reactions that evening. Fact is some of us are still trembling from yesterday’s session, thanking Allah nonstop for bringing us to the session and for taking us back home as it were. To our home in Islam and in Qur’an and Hadith. Every Muslim’s true home.
How many Subhanallahs are enough for yesterday, I don’t know. And how many Astaghfirullahs, for all that we could have done, but were not able to do, to make the program even bigger and even more successful than it turned out to be, I don’t know.
The comfort and consolation always is that Allah is greater than all seemingly great and wonderful things that we either work for or crave or actually achieve.
I don’t know why Allah selected me, and some of the others who helped me in this project, and why he gives us so many chances, and what else can I say other than:
La ilaha illAllah,
I looked at people’s faces and saw my own face as it were, I looked at people’s hearts and felt the same yearning for Allah and his Deen that is in my heart. And guess what, and Alhamdulillah, at the end of the session, three people came forward and said they needed help to learn to read the Qur’an.
They said they now realized that what was missing in their lives was the Qur’an. And that was in spite of their many great achievements and worldly accomplishments in their lives.
We immediately paired them off with qualified people so they will get personalized attention in learning to read the Qur’an the right way. May Allah make it easy for them to learn the Qur’an.
Others said they had never heard it so directly and so clearly stated that holding onto the rope of Allah meant holding on to the Qur’an, which meant reading the Qur’an as well as understanding it.
And of course putting the Qur’an and its teachings into practice.
And that means reading the Qur’an in the original language in which it was sent and seeking Allah’s protection from Shaitan every time you read it, because Shaitan works nonstop to take us away from the Qur’an.
We all wished we could hold these meetings in the town square; in Times Square; and in Tiananmen Square. On Downing Street, at the White House, at Oxford University and Delhi University, and in the souks of Istanbul alike.
This talk of not just Islam, but Islam, Muslims and the world, and the role of all us as both Basheer and Nazeer to the rest of the world, has to reach the ear of every living person today and tomorrow.
Basheer means one who brings good news and Nazeer means someone who warns others of imminent danger. Those are the Twin-Tasks that Allah assigned Sayyidina Muhammad, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam.
And through him, this twin responsibility of being Basheer and Nazeer was placed on the shoulders of every Muslim man and woman with regard to every other human being in this world until the end of the world.
As Dr. Pasha explained, that is what Shahaadat means in this world. And that is what every Muslim commits himself or herself to, every time they say “Ash-Hadu.” It means every Muslim is giving a pledge to Allah that they will work to take the message of La Ilaha Illallah, Muhammad Rasulullah, to every nook and cranny of the world and the message of Islam to every single human ear and eye and heart everywhere.
The New Pasha Hour International continued, and at the end of two hours, that looked and felt like mere minutes, no one wanted to stop or leave.
But we all had to head home, which is what we did, until such time as Allah makes it possible for us to reassemble in the next program in near future, Inshallah.
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