Muslims and the World
(Bringing Islam to the World One Concept at a Time) Quote-Unquote – Book IX (801-900)
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Every moment in your life is a wonder. If you did not get this simple fact, you never really lived.
And every breath you take is a miracle from God. If you don’t see that, you are really blind.
And your heart is constantly vibrating with the power of Allah to reflect his will in and through you. If you do not understand that, you may as well be a robot or a machine, and not really a human being.
And the light of Allah, while eternal and constant, strikes the prism of human hearts differently at different times. If you failed to catch that light in your heart, and let it illumine your life and the world around you, the clouds of darkness surrounding you and your world may never part.
And if you will not let Allah’s light bring clarity to your life, you may have virtually signed off on an eternity of stagnation and misery for yourself and for those over whom you may have influence.
In short, you may have chosen a life of hell on earth.
So, seize the moment, and move with Allah’s light and power, your wonders to perform.
Dr. Firdaus Kamalodeen
What an amazing concept it is: the concept of Working for Allah.
More proof, as if we needed more proof, that this Islam could not have come from any human source whatsoever.
I am very grateful to Allah for making me -- and others -- see and understand this over so many years. And for continuing to do so to this day.
For my part, I believe I have been the chief beneficiary of this understanding. And life as we know it today makes so much more sense, as some would say, as a result of internalizing this concept. I shudder to think of the alternative.
But knowing some thing and executing it are two very different things.
And while deficiencies and limitations exist in my understanding, I am even more keenly aware of the deficiencies in my execution. I worry about this all the time.
But Allahu Akbar, how God Almighty helps us deal with this “obsession” too -- an obsession that could be most debilitating if not addressed in a timely and effective manner.
Allah bless Dr. Pasha for helping so many of us understand and deal with this very, very human weakness by repeatedly arguing that constantly lamenting our weaknesses and inaction does not take us anywhere. Nor was it really Islamic in essence and spirit.
Instead, Dr. Pasha never tired of arguing, we must learn to replace our sense of helplessness, and our inaction, with a positive spirit of enterprise, dispatch and action. And that means whatever action we are able to muster and manage at any point of time, in any particular place and with regard to any given situation.
And that means each one of us just doing what we are able to do, such as we are. That is the critical construct: Such As We Are!
Again, that is a concept that could only come from a loving, kind, compassionate, merciful and most generous God!
Dr. Pasha draws our attention to a most amazing Aayat of the Qur’an -- and which Aayat of the Qur’an is not most amazing?
Faqra-oo Maa Tayassara Minal Qur’an.
Dr. Pasha’s paraphrase of that Aayat Karimah:
“Just pick up a copy of the Qur’an and read whatever and
however much you easily can.”
Who but Allah could offer a deal that generous to the human beings that he designed and created with so many weaknesses and infirmities.
So, now, rather than obsessing with things, and with my own deficiencies and failures, I try to channel whatever energy Allah gives me into doing what I can.
Again, Allah bless Dr. Pasha for showing us these things.
But the truth is that doing Allah’s Work is indeed the remedy for all our problems and challenges. But perhaps chief among these problems and challenges is that either we don’t realize this or we forget it so often.
When we say we all must be engaged in Working for Allah, here is some of what we mean:
It means our production and distribution of literature;
And our meetings and our Dhikr sessions;
And our service activities of all kinds;
And our aid and humanitarian projects;
And our time with the Qur’an;
And our time with the Hadith Sharif;
And our time and effort learning or teaching something;
And our outreach efforts;
And our activities to invite people to Allah;
And everything else that we do of that nature and type.
What people call “Worshiping Allah” is pretty much the same thing that we call “Working for Allah.”
And Vice Versa! That means “Working for Allah” is “Worshiping Allah.”
And that means they are both the same if you understand them. Even though they may be a bit different in some practical aspects and in some technicalities.
Jannat – what people call Paradise or Heaven – doesn’t come cheap or easy. There is a lot of toil, tears and heartache that goes into earning it.
All those virgins the mealy-mouths and the mercenaries in the media and elsewhere rave about in relation to Islam and Muslims, they come with an astronomical price tag: a clean mind; a pure heart; a chaste life; and a mouth that is not putrid with spewing hate, trash-talk and vile propaganda against those who cannot defend themselves.
“Working for Allah is not part-time work.
Nor should it be way down on your To-Do List. Or even second, or third or fourth.
In fact, all your other work – if there is such a thing – derives its legitimacy, and its blessings from God, based on how committed you are to do Allah’s Work, and how sincerely and seriously you take that commitment, and how honestly and diligently you try to fulfil it.
The More Time You Spend Doing Allah’s Work,
The More Time You Seem To Have for Your Own Personal Work! [Quote – 894]
Allah says all human life belongs to him. People say, no, we will keep the bulk of our life for our own personal use and give Allah a little bit of it.
If you ask me, this is actually a form of Shirk – splitting up God’s authority and rights with others, such as yourself in this case. And it is worse than rejecting God outright.
So, what happens when you give all your life to Allah, as you ought to, and as Allah asks you to do? Believe it or not, the opposite happens!
Meaning, you get more time and energy and resources for yourself. To do your own work as it were.
Allah bless the man who once made the comment I paraphrase here. He said:
“The more time you spend doing Allah’s Work,
the more time you seem to have on your hands for your own Personal Work.”
And, conversely, the less time you spend doing Allah’s Work,
the less time there seems to be for your own Personal Work!”
Allahu Akbar, what a sentiment! What a thought!
Does anyone else feel the way this gentleman seems to feel? Because I can see quite clearly what he means.
Or is it a special line God Almighty opens up to some people, much to the envy of the rest of us?
I don’t know if this is called a redundancy or a tautology, or even gibberish, but it strikes me that there is no fool more dangerous than an ignorant fool.
From an Islamic perspective, ignorance is not bliss. And it can be a very dangerous and unfortunate thing, ignorance I mean. And it can be at the root of a lot of evil.
And a lot of bad things that happen to people in this world could be traced to the evil of ignorance.
The Islamic model is the exact opposite of this.
In Islam, Knowledge Is Bliss. And God Almighty is the Most Knowledgeable One. He is Al-‘Aleem!
And Muslims name themselves: Abdul Aleem. Meaning: The slave of The Most Knowledgeable One.
Therefore, in Islam, there is no equivalency between knowledge and ignorance. They are two opposite things. One to be desired and diligently sought and the other to be shunned and avoided.
The Qur’an asks: How can the two be the same?
Hal Yastawilladheena Ya’lamoona Walladheena Laa Ya’lamoon?
“How can the two be equal: Those who know and those who don’t know?”
Today’s definition of Islam, if you have not heard it from me before, and even if you have, is this:
Blessing the World – the whole world – without regard to race or religion, and without regard to gender, class or nationality.
How sad it is for me to tell you at this stage in the history of the world that that is precisely what Muslims all over the world actually do – Twenty-Four-Seven: Bless the World!
And when I say “Muslims,” I mean every single Muslim individual everywhere.
And, I suspect, that is not something anyone else in the world does. That means no non-Muslim of any kind or category or description is so completely engaged in blessing the world of Allah so profusely and so comprehensively.
This is not to attack or insult non-Muslims in any way, but only to point out a most important difference about how Muslims and non-Muslims live their life on this earth: Muslims bless everybody and everything everywhere; non-Muslims do what they do. Why not ask them what exactly it is that they do.
Just ask the non-Muslims how many times a day they say Assalamu Alaikum to all sundry!
Here is a paraphrase of an advice given to a fairly brilliant post-graduate university student who wrote to apologize, and provide some excuses, for not being able to be as active as before in what we have been calling Working for Allah.
The student’s explanations included the following:
Continued and more focused work on the methodology and literature review parts of the thesis; concurrent work on a new competitive and refereed scholarly conference paper; preoccupation with tests that seem to be getting tougher all the time; and such.
Now, I am known to have a serious weakness, among all the other weaknesses that afflict my character: a marked penchant and alacrity for giving advice, whether it is asked for or not.
And whether anybody pays any attention or not, and whether anyone listens or not.
I just love to offer advice to anyone who happens to be within earshot.
So, here is how my advice came out:
May Allah help and bless you. Right now, your thesis, your tests, your conference papers and your journal publications are your Islam.
So, make sure you stay with your Islam.
At the same time, also make sure you do not abandon “Allah’s Work” – which is basically doing your own work; doing your family’s work; doing your neighbors’ work; as well as doing everybody else’s work – when you are done navigating these rough patches of your student life, and things get a bit smoother and easier.
I could say that because that is what Islam is all about: going about living your life in a way that is best for you and best for the whole world, both at the same time.
And doing it all within the framework of Working for Allah, at the core of which is the duty and responsibility of Taking the Qur’an to Every Home and Heart that Needs It.
How I wish Muslims would seek clarity in life –and in relation to Islam, which is what life is all about.
And which is also what Islam is all about.
For, in Islam, life and Islam are synonymous. Life lived according to the laws and commands of Allah is Islam, period.
Confusing? Sit down and work on it and you will see how amazingly clear and simple it really is.
And, oh how I wish Muslims would at least accept clarity when it is offered to them, as it is being done here, on a platter as they say!
God bless the Muslims. And God bless his world.
All the Time that You Spend Not Working for Allah,
How Will You Account for That Time? [Quote – 890]
I may have said this before, but let me say this again anyway.
Qur’an tells us that Allah made us – created us – to Work for Him. The words of the Qur’an are clear, simple and direct. And here they are:
Wa Maa Khalaqtul Jinnah Wal Insa Illaa Li-Ya’budooni!
And here is a paraphrase of these divine and immortal words of the Qur’an:
“I created not the Jinns and the Humans,
save for one single purpose
and one single mission:
To Serve Me and To Work for Me!”
So, anything that humans engage in, other than Serving Allah and Working for Him, marks them down as fugitive slaves, on the run from Allah’s justice, with the whole universe in hot pursuit of them to apprehend them and to bring them to justice.
We all know Allah is most forgiving and most accepting of excuses from his slaves, and he is most compassionate and generous.
Yet, I cannot help wondering how in the world I will, and others will, ever account for all those seconds and minutes, and for all those days and months and years, we all spend not doing Allah’s Work, not Working for Allah and not Serving Him – however we may want to define and interpret the expressions Working for Allah and Serving Allah.
The Devil – Shaitan or Satan – is a smart investor.
He does not like to waste his capital on fools and wastrels who are already in his bag. People who are busy squandering their capital with God Almighty in one foolish way or another such as drinking or gambling.
And those given to a life of adultery, fornication and pedophilia. And those engaged in moral, economic, political and cultural corruption.
As a rule, he likes to maximize returns on his time, talent, training and effort. So, often, he chooses his targets quite wisely and carefully.
Bad People are already under his influence and in his grip. And he knows that. So why should he waste his time with them, right?
Shaitan knows that Bad People will be only too happy to do his bidding. All he has to do is snap his fingers and they will come running to him like a bevy of hungry, lovesick poodles. And he will make available for them all the opportunities for evil that they crave and indulge.
It is, therefore, the Good People that Shaitan – the Devil – is most after. And it is Good People that Shaitan worries about most.
Shaitan’s biggest challenge is how to start the Good People off on a slippery slope. How to make Good People take their first Bad Step.
Once the Good People take their first Wrong Step, Shaitan knows that will bring them down from their secure Good Position and send them down spiraling to a free fall – and to eventual perdition.
The following saying -- Hadith -- is proof that Muhammad, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, is truly a prophet and messenger of God -- just as he claimed he was.
He says, and that means it is a Hadith Sharif:
“A single Learned Individual is harder for the Devil to deal with than a 1000 pious people who may be absorbed all the time in worshiping God and in doing penance.”
And then he says in what is another Hadith:
“I was only sent into this world as an educator.”
Innamaa Bu’th-tu Mu’alliman.
Just think about it for a moment! How astounding and miraculous that statement sounds in and of itself!
But then consider the fact that all this was happening in early 7th Century! When most people had no clue what education was all about. And when, in fact, most people were not even allowed access to education or to teachers or to books.
Well, it seems to me, that is what real miracles are made of, in case you really wanted to know.
And that is what gives added credence to the claim that Prophet Muhammad, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, was indeed truly a prophet and messenger of God -- just as he claimed he was.
People would say that everybody needs to make a living.
Some would say even prostitutes do, no matter how low others may consider their profession.
But to make a living by knowingly, willfully and maliciously lying about an entire “religion” like Islam, that hundreds of millions of people throughout the world honor, cherish and practice, and do so for money, and for worldly gain, and to advance all kinds of personal and social and political agendas, must count as among the lowest of all professions.
Perhaps one of the biggest threats to the integrity of Islam – and in some ways to the future of the world – comes from those who make a career or a business out of Islam and Muslims.
This one man taught the world how to read and write, even though he himself did not know either to read or to write. He gave the world education.
His name was Muhammad -- Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam.
Just imagine how much the Educated World of today owes Prophet Muhammad, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, in terms of everything it has.
And yet how ignorant and ill-informed, and uncaring, that world is about him.
Prophet Muhammad, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, came into this world in early Seventh Century.
That was when reading and writing were generally forbidden for everyone except members of the royal family, the rich landlords and the most privileged few.
And of course the members of the clergy – the priests.
Those were the times when many people were put to the sword for daring to teach themselves or others how to read and write.
In such a climate, Prophet Muhammad, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, came and offered the world a “Book” – Al-Kitaab.
And he called that book “The Reading” – Al-Qur’an.
And he issued a common command to the whole world – to all of humanity – “To Read!”
Just plain “Read!”
Then he said if any man or woman taught himself or herself one single passage of that Book, that Al-Kitaab, big or small, that would be more than 200 times better than worshiping God in other ways.
And he said that to Hazrat Abu Zarr, a close companion of his, who was a most devout and God-fearing individual, given to a great deal of worship.
He didn’t say “200 times better,” he said “More than 200 times better.”
His words were not only blessed, they were most carefully chosen. And they were closely monitored from above: by God Almighty himself.
Does the Educated World of today know anything about this man?
And does the Educated World of today know anything about this most amazing of miracles that he gave the world: the Miracle of Universal Education?
Do the Muslims know about this fact?
Do the non-Muslims know about this most miraculous fact?
What would it take for the Muslims to get out and share this fact with the rest of the world?
And what would it take for the non-Muslims of this world to inquire and find out about it?
By Professor Kalamazad Mohammed
Dr. Pasha recently made a comment in one of his posts on www.IslamicSolutions.com that I found to be truly astounding.
He said: “When people confuse means with ends, their lives don’t end up too well.”
This realization moved me deeply. And I began to think, maybe, Dr. Pasha was being gentle when he was breaking this stark reality upon us in this particular way.
Otherwise, I could see clearly that chances are, when people cannot tell the means from the ends, and when they make the means the end, they end up affecting, let me say “jeopardizing,” not only their own lives, but also the lives of others as well.
And that means the whole world.
Most people in this world seem to be of the view, and conclusion, that the means are the ends.
Most people seem to feel that their careers, jobs, families, money, positions is what they have to spend their entire lives to achieve and to build.
Unfortunately, I feel, many Muslims also fall in this same trap. But with one difference though: When Muslims do this, when Muslims mistake means for ends, their case comes out to me as even more depressing than when the non-Muslims do it.
When we look at the life of Muslims today, it is clear that most Muslims see Salat, fasting and Hajj as the end and not as the tools Allah has given them to work on their character and thus influence and change the state of the whole world for the better.
In other words, those who were sent here by God to change the world, and make it better, have themselves fallen victim to the problems and confusion that prevail in the world.
Islam is all about reflection and thinking. The Qur’an is clear on that.
But in life there is something else that is critical. And that is action.
Just like there is no food without water and there is no water without food.
In some ways, Reflection and Thought themselves could be considered action.
But when thought becomes a hindrance to action, or even a substitute for action, then that is not the kind of reflection and thought that Islam commends and encourages.
To a truly meaningful and productive life, that kind of useless thought and purposeless reflection is dysfunctional and counterproductive.
For, the essence of life, and life’s true purpose, is action, functionality, productivity and growth. And empty thought runs directly counter to life’s supreme purpose and ultimate outcome.
That is why Islam’s First Responders -- Sahaabah Kiraam and the next generation -- were among the most lucid thinkers the world has known.
At the same time, they were also among the world’s quickest and most decisive actors. With them to think and to understand something was to leap to implement it in their lives -- and all around them.
That is why in less than 100 years they totally changed the world from the way they found it to the way Islam wanted it to be: Free, Equal, Prosperous and Truly Enlightened.
It is a strange thing to say, but that is what strikes me as obvious. And it strikes me with a telling force. Every time I think about it.
Working for Allah, whatever that means, and however it is done, is a little bit like hopping on a tiger for a ride. It strikes me that most folks won’t do it for fun or on a whim.
They won’t hop on the back of the most powerful tiger ever built only to hop off at the next street corner, or whenever else the fancy overtakes them.
Or when other “More Pressing” things loom along.
Doesn’t look like the smart thing to do.
Last time, Yunus, Alaihis Salam, tried it. The Qur’an tells us.
He ended up in the belly of the beast, in the middle of a bottomless ocean, the Qur’an also tells us.
So, when Allah guides you to the honor and privilege of Working for Him, the smart thing to do is to stay put. And to be constant and firm and steady, whether or not we are on Candid Camera.
It helps to remind ourselves that that is precisely the reason Allah created us: To Work for Him. Everything else he has given us is a means to that end.
When people confuse means with ends, their lives don’t end up too well.
I write what I write for one very simple and clear reason -- among all the other reasons that I write for: To educate our people.
Whether these people are an Ummat of One like Ibrahim, Alaihis Salam, or a boundless multitude, like so many others.
I don’t know who those people are. Nor does it really matter who they are. Or how many of them there are.
The expectation is, if there is an expectation at all, that those who read my writings will connect with the sense of what is being said, and internalize it, and take it to the next level of action and implementation.
What I write is not poetry that people can admire and then put it aside to move on with the rest of their life.
I write to make people learn; think; understand; feel; and act.
And what I write is immediate and urgent. It is not meant to go on the back burner as they say, or on the shelf to be retrieved on some other more convenient day.
What I write is now -- and, should Allah so decree -- for foreseeable future. Read the words in Hadith Sharif Sabbahakum! Massaakum! and you will understand the nature and thrust of what I write.
I write because ideas flood my brain when and as they do. And wake me up in the middle of the night. And make me jump out of bed at the crack of dawn. And keep me from going to bed.
They do because Allah makes them.
I claim no credit and I offer no excuses. I just shudder at the responsibility and at my own sense of inadequacy and helplessness.
And I quail at my D’afa Quwwatee and Qillata Heelatee!
So, that is the simple, clear and single reason why people do what they do -- whatever it is that they do.
They all do the things they do because Allah makes them.
Then how can Allah hold us responsible for the things that he does himself?
Or give us credit for the good things we do, if we do any good things at all?
Good question, wouldn’t you say?
Tell me when you have the time and I will explain!
Muslims are amazing. And they are going to Jannat, right?
And they have the most amazing ways of expressing themselves.
Used to be, Muslims would say, and I mean Good Muslims, when someone said to them, Hey, we all should be working hard to learn Islam, and to invite people to Islam, and to teach Islam to people, Good Muslims, upon hearing this would say “Of Course, Ameen! May Allah Make Us Work Hard and Do All That!”
To me it meant something like:
Hey, you want me to do something for your God,
go tell him to “Make Me Do It.”
It used to amaze me. This reaction from Good Muslims, when reminded of our work and of our responsibilities in this world. I wish I could say “amuse” me, but, frankly, it was too painful to be amusing.
So, I would tell the folks, Hey, look, the idea is for you to get your act together, and get on with what you must do. It is not about firing off another quick Du’a to Allah asking him to “make you” do your work.
And I would use examples like, Hey, how many of you ask Allah to make you go to the mechanic to fix your car or to the gas station to fill up your car?
Or make you tie your shoelaces?
Or “make you” wash your face and brush your teeth?
So, why and how is this different? When it comes to Working for Allah?
Of course, it is a given that Allah is the “true” -- I had to put that in -- actor with regard to everything in our life.
And also, if you ask me again, the “only” actor!
But that is not what they are thinking and saying, these Good Muslims. It is just a Reflex Action they had developed over the years when it came to Islam and things Islamic.
At bottom, it is a Psychic Disconnect of sorts from Reality.
After a while, they changed, the Good Muslims I mean, and that is partly why I call them Good Muslims, and started to accept Personal and Individual Responsibility for what they should be doing to preach and teach Islam to themselves and to everyone else in this world.
Sometimes it strikes me, Muslims are willing to learn. It is just that we are fast running out of people to teach them.
And many of those clamoring for Muslim attention from every street corner, it appears to me, are too often after Muslim Money more than they are after the Minds and Souls of Muslims!
And after Muslim Education and Wellbeing.
The way Allah’s Rasul, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, used to be.
And the way the Qur’an said he would be -- and he was:
“Always solicitous of you.
And always concerned about your wellbeing.”
As God Almighty’s Representatives on Planet Earth, we all have a job to do: To Serve and To Protect and To Tend to Allah’s Creation.
Allah’s Creation in all forms and in all places: in the West as well as in the East; in the North as well as in the South.
And do so the best way we know how. And do so without let up or respite. And whether or not we are on Candid Camera.
And, also, whether or not Our Self-Interests are advanced in any way by doing this.
For, that is our job. It was for that purpose that God Almighty created us and placed us on this earth.
His words are:
Innee Jaa’ilun Fil Ardi Khaleefah!
And when I say “We” I am referring to All of Humanity -- male and female, black and white, believer and non-believer.
Muslims are simply those who have rationally and consciously submitted to their Master, God Almighty, and have accepted this mandate and this assignment from him.
Kaafirs are those who deny they have a master. They reject him and his authority in their life. And they reject the mandate and the assignment that came from him.
So, they are Rejectors and Deniers. Just as Muslims are Submitters and Accepters.
That is all there is to it.
Muslims of the West -- Good Muslims, Allah bless them -- talk about “The West” as if this mythical “West” were the Primordial “Other.”
As if the West were The Enemy. The Irreconcilably Different One. As if it were our Counterfoil in every way.
The fact is that The West is none of the above.
And a much clearer and larger fact is that The West Is Us.
Let me restate this: The West Is Us!
The fact is we Muslims live in the West. We are an integral and inseparable part of the West.
And we build and make the West what it is.
And we love and serve the West as part of Allah’s Creation. And as part of our Domain of Khilafat on Earth.
Also, historically, our blood, in all kinds of sense and ways, from intellectual to physical to cultural to spiritual, and in all other kinds of ways, flows through the veins of what people call The West for the past hundreds of years.
Just as it does through all kinds of places and peoples from Arabia to India to Africa to China to what have you.
And in more ways than most know or imagine, we have made the West what it is today.
And The West never had a component or partner more sincere, more loving, more loyal, more true and more devoted than us, Muslims.
God Bless Us!
And God Bless Our Home The West!
We and The West are not only interconnected, we are One and the Same!
In Islam, life is an integrated, organic, unified whole. Therefore, there is no such thing as a separate “Religious Life” and a separate “Secular Life” from an Islamic point of view.
As a result, in Islam there is also no separate “Religious Leadership” and a separate “Secular Leadership.”
There is only one leadership, which is both “Religious” and “Secular” at the same time. Even though that one leadership could be looked upon as “Good” or “Bad” Leadership depending on how it carries out its duties and responsibilities and how it delivers results.
Be that as it may, looking at the world the way it is, it is very sad that Muslim “Religious Leaders” have allowed Muslim “Secular Leaders” to rope them in to support their dictatorship and to help them carry out the enslavement of the Muslim Masses.
It is time that Genuine, Sincere and Capable Muslim Leaders emerge to lead the Muslim masses out of their bondage.
That is my most fervent prayer for this New Year -- 2018!
Allah’s Kalam -- Allah’s Speech: the Qur’an -- is Error Free.
Just the way Allah himself is Blemish Free.
But we are human. We are designed and created by Allah the way we are: with all the flaws and imperfections inherent to what is called Human Nature.
And yet, our job as Muslims in this world is to make our work as error-free as we possibly can make it.
And that means the world looking at any of the work we do should be able to say:
“Ha, Surely, A Muslim Has Worked On This Project!”
Those of us who are a part of the Western Wing of the Muslim Ummah, meaning those of us who are domiciled in the West by birth or immigration, are often incredibly busy. But, regardless, we need to find ways to be visible to each other.
And do so consistently.
Of course, this may be easier said than done. But making it happen -- making ourselves consistently visible to each other -- is something we cannot escape.
It is our duty under God’s Law.
Here is a Theoretical Model that should help to clarify this. It is encapsulated in a Hadith Sharif, this Model.
To me, Hadith is a most unimpeachable fact of life.
Meaning, so long as the Isnaad, the Chain of Narration is checked and verified by competent authorities called Muhadditheen, the content of the Hadith is as real as the Midday Sun in a cloudless sky.
Sometimes, even a weak and wobbly Sanad (another name for the Chain of Narration) could be hiding a priceless gem of a valid Hadith.
Given that, my choice of expressions and words such as “Theoretical Model” is more along scientific lines than based on everyday use of language.
So, from that point of view, a Theoretical Model is a general statement that explains many specific instances, examples and observations from everyday life.
So, the Hadith Sharif, to the extent I am able to recall it at this time, goes like this:
Al-Mu’minu Mir’aatul Mu’min!
“A Believer Is A Mirror in which other Believers are
able to see and check themselves constantly.”
So, how are the Believers to use this Mirror when the mirror goes missing from the wall?
Now, can you add to the Mix the A-haadeeth (plural for Hadith) which insist that Muslims must pray in Jama’at in the Congregation, rather than at home?
And that Muslim men must attend Jum’ah Congregation, no matter what?
Huwa Sammakum Al-Muslimeen
“It was he who gave you the name ‘Muslims.'”
Some may say it means Ibrahim, Alaihis Salam. But the general intent is the same. Regardless of whether it is Allah or Ibrahim, Alaihis Salam, the official title conferred upon us is: Muslims.
And now Muslims of America and Europe have found all kinds of names for themselves, and for their wards through whom many make their living.
Some of those names include: Reverts; Chaplains; Imams; and what have you.
Fellows even use the title: “His Eminence” for people they think occupy an especially exalted position in some kind of an Islamic “Religious” hierarchy. Little do they seem to know or care that Islam came into this world to sweep it clean of all artificial human distinctions and hierarchies whether secular or religious.
How can “His Holiness” be far behind then -- after “His Eminence,” right? After all, we have “Holy Book.” And “Holy Prophet.” And “Holy” everything else. So, should we all then get ready for the arrival of a “Muslim Pope”?
Of course, the title “His Majesty” used to be a common one. But for some reason it seems to have faded just a trifle.
In English it may not sound so terrible, this Majesty thing. But try it in original Arabic, as in Jalaalatul Malik, and then, if your soul does not quake to the core upon hearing it, maybe you should order a brand new soul for yourself -- and for all those within earshot of that vile and banal expression when applied to humans.
For Allah Almighty, that expression Al-Malik (Jalla Jalaaluhu) is apt and right. But for humans? It is nothing but the stench of a rancid and corrupt soul and a decaying slave society.
But “Royal Highness” is well and alive. Basically, Muslims are grateful for whatever Shaitan supplies and they take it and run with it.
I ask myself: What is next for Muslims?
And then why do Muslims complain when Allah’s wrath descends on them from every direction?
What you may call a Perfect Life requires a unified, coherent and harmonious approach to living. It requires Perfect Unity at three most important levels of human existence -- here and in the hereafter.
And that means when you become a Muslim -- no matter how that happens, whether by birth or by conversion -- you acquire three kinds of Unity.
Or you must.
Cognitive or Conceptual Unity;
Affective or Emotional Unity;
Behavioral or Operational Unity.
Cognitive is how you acquire and structure your knowledge and your thought.
Affective is how you generate and manage your emotions and feelings.
Behavioral is how you act and do things in this world on a day-to-day basis.
Laa Ilaaha Illallah provides the perfect organizing principle for the first two.
Muhammad Rasulullah, in addition, provides the framework for everyday practical life.
Taken together, Laa Ilaaha Illallah, Muhammad Rasulullah provides a formula for living a life of perfect Cognitive-Affective-Behavioral harmony, richness and success in this world as well as in the next.
In Islam, there is a concept called Istiqaamat. It is actually directly from the Qur’an. The Qur’an says:
Wa Lidhaalika Fastaqim Kamaa Umirta!
“And that is why stand firm, and be steadfast, as you have been told to do.”
Without the will to stay put, and without the commitment to go on while no one else would appear to, is the essence of Istiqaamat.
In Badr, Istiqaamat carried the day for Muslims.
In Uhad, Istiqaamat of a critical group of Muslims faltered and the day was lost.
The lesson continues to our day. And it will continue for as long as the world lasts.
Wa Laa Tajidu Li-Sunnatillahi Tabdeelaa!
“Allah’s ways do not change.”
Simple to understand. Allah works from Eternity to Eternity. Allah’s work is not controlled by a calendar or a clock on the wall!
Education. Education. Education.
That is the key to rebuilding the nation. Any nation or society.
Both Muslim and non-Muslim.
Islam started the drive to Education 1400 years ago. In a place where most people did not even know what Education was.
In today’s world, Non-Muslims embraced the call of Islam to Education. And Muslims, in many ways and at many levels, turned their back on it.
The results are obvious.
From time to time, I do take a sneak peek at some of what Muslims have to say.
Below is an observation that one Muslim writer made recently. It deserves serious reading and reflection on the part of all of us:
“Muslim countries own a significant portion of the world’s natural resources including oil, gas, minerals and forestry. …
Muslims make up 21 percent of the world’s population (1.5 billion) but account for only 5 percent of the global GDP (a little less than $5 trillion). The average GDP per capita is around $5,000, which is three times less than the global average of around $13,000. Only a few Muslim countries have a sustainable model of development and show signs of success for alleviating poverty and for the equal distribution of wealth. Only a handful of universities in Muslim countries make it to the world’s top one or five hundred list. The number of scholarly and scientific output in these universities and research institutes is negligible.”
Well, what do you all think?
Life of a Muslim is often filled with challenges of all kinds.
Sunnatullah -- Allah’s way of doing things -- is most amazing.
The better a Muslim is, and the closer he or she is to Allah, the more full of challenges his or her life becomes.
Life becomes a never-ending test.
Iman is tested.
Vigilance and Resourcefulness are tested.
Leadership skills and abilities are tested.
Sabr and Tawakkul are tested.
Ridaa -- Are you happy and pleased with what Allah is doing in your life, or do you have a problem with that? -- is tested.
And then, just when you think, you are finished and you have nowhere to turn, Allah’s Aayat rings true. And help is at the door.
“Our help came to them.”
I look at the life of Anbiyaa Allah -- Prophets and Messengers of God -- Alaihim Assalam, and I wonder:
When did they ever have a moment free from challenges?
When was life all rosy and comfortable for them?
When was life all smooth sailing for them, as they say?
So, loving Allah and his Deen comes with its own perils -- and challenges.
Fa-Toobaa Lil Ghurabaa!
Good wishes to those who stick with it.
It fills me with great sadness that millions of people speak for Shaitan.
On behalf of the Devil.
And for Baatil.
For all things that are wrong and false and detrimental to real and genuine human interests in this as well as in the next world.
Expounding and advocating all the lies that come from the Devil -- and from legions of his minions.
But not even a handful of truly qualified and competent and credible voices are around to speak for Allah.
And to speak for Allah’s Deen.
I dare not mention Allah’s Rasul, sallallahu alaihi wa sallam, in the same breath.
For, that door is a highly guarded one!
And then I think the way we say we do Allah’s work -- whatever it is and however we interpret it -- what value, what glory, what importance and prominence do we attach to it?
If Allah’s work will not be done with full glory, and fanfare, whose work will be?
Just look at Muslim weddings -- and at all the Muslim functions -- in many parts of the world.
Look at all the show and the pomp!
And look at all the money that is spent!
And look at all the food that is wasted.
Do I need to say more?
I always had trouble understanding this simple thing about Muslims:
Either Allah exists or he does not.
We either believe in him or we do not.
But if Allah exists -- as he does al hayyul qayyoom and al hayyulladhee laa yamootu -- and we say we believe in him, then why do we act the way we do?
Why do we carry on the way we do?
Where is the impact of our belief on our lives?
Have we no shame, as someone said?
Someone recently said to me:
You are doing so much to spread Allah’s Deen!”
My initial response? A quick shudder down my spine.
And then the words:
Me and Allah’s Deen?
How does that compute?”
A more delayed reaction:
Even though the person means well, and may Allah reward that person immensely for that kindness and generosity of spirit, I am afraid these words will be held against me in Allah’s court.
I fear it will be said to me,
Good, nice people in the world thought you were spreading Allah’s Deen on Allah’s earth.
Just how were you doing it?
What was in your heart at that time, when you were doing it?
What were your motivations and intentions?
And how did your actions match what was in your heart?
And what means and methods did you employ?
And what resources of what kind did you utilize and invest in doing Allah’s work?
And what precisely were the things you did to advance Allah’s Deen on Allah’s earth?
And, over and on top of all that, here you were, your whole life a shame to Allah’s Deen --
From A to Z.
So, just how did you fit in? How did you even belong?
So, what do you have to say for yourself?”
And I will have nowhere to hide!
No, the truth is, whatever I did -- or do -- if I did or do anything at all, it never entered my mind that any of it was for Allah.
I did -- and I do -- what I did and do for one simple reason: it is a job that must be done.
That is all there is to it.
Life of a Muslim — A Story of Never-Ending Tests and Trials!
And Then of Companionship of Allah! [Quote – 866]
Some would say the life of a Muslim is filled with challenges.
All you need to do is to look at the life of Sayyidina Muhammad, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam. When did he ever get to rest? His life was Go, Go, Go, all the time.
From Makkah to Taif. And then to Habashah -- Abyssinia -- for his people.
Not once but twice.
And then to Madinah for himself and for his people together.
Alone in the Cave -- he with his companion Abu Bakr. They were two together in that Cave.
Thaaniyathnayini Idh Humaa Fil Ghaar!
Just the two of them together in the Cave. With Enemy surrounding them from all sides. If the Enemy had only looked down at their feet, they would have spotted the Divine Fugitives.
And what Blessed Fugitives they were! With everything everywhere on God’s earth vying and straining and eager to offer them refuge! And give them a helping hand!
Abu Bakr is perturbed, not unnaturally. Not for himself, but for the man, Allah’s Rasul, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, for whom he had put his all on the line. And now his life too.
One more time.
“What if the Kaafirs just looked down, what would happen then?” said Abu Bakr.
“Not to worry,” says Allah said Rasulullah, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, to Abu Bakr.
We are not alone, said Rasulullah, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam. For, there is someone else with us.
“Allah is with us,” he said.
The Qur’an uses the following words:
That is how it is with a Muslim. He, she is never alone. There is always Allah with them.
And they know it and they feel it, depending where their heart is and depending on the purity or pollution of their soul.
And having Allah with you, who or what else would you want to have with you?
“A Laisallahu Bi-Kaafin Abdah?”
“Isn’t Allah enough for you?” says the Qur’an.
Of course! There is always Allah! And Allah is enough!
Kafaa Billahi Waliyyaa!
Wa Kafaa Billahi Naseeraa!
And Allah is there! Before everything. And after everything.
And with everything, no matter how hidden or open.
Huwal Awwalu Wal Aakhir,
Wazzaahiru Wal Baatin!
Slaves do not sacrifice. They only try and measure up. And they try to please the Master -- to the extent they can.
And of course many cheat like crazy.
As for me, I have no expectations of ever measuring up to what Allah wants from us or what we owe Allah.
The fact is there are two kinds of people in this world:
One, those whom Allah himself nudges and guides and pushes in the direction of working for him.
Two, those whom he turns away from working for him -- using all kinds of devices.
Then there is a third category: the Pretenders. The Munaafiqoon. They are neither here nor there.
And these groups are decided when they were still in the belly of their mother -- by Allah himself.
Take it how you want. But that is how it is.
Shaitan often starts small. It is amazing what an inveterate optimist Shaitan is.
He watches and observes people and their conditions. He constantly monitors the situation of each one of us. And he tests the waters everywhere he can.
Allah has given Shaitan considerable powers to be able to do that -- until the Day of Resurrection.
Rabbi Anzirnee Ilaa Yawumi Yub’athoon.
“Can I have until Resurrection Day
to be able to trick and fool and mislead these wretched humans?”
That is what Shaitan said to Allah.
And here is what Allah said to Shaitan in response to that strange and arrogant request:
Inaaka Minal Munzareen.
Go, do what you want!
You are free Until Resurrection Day.”
And then Shaitan makes his move.
He makes an entry wherever and whenever he finds an opening -- in our hearts, in our minds, in our souls, in our bodies, in our activities and interests, and in our lives.
And in the circle of our friends and acquaintances and contacts.
And in our businesses, professions and entertainment. And in all our other pursuits.
And then he builds on whatever success we are able to deliver his way. He grabs and consolidates whatever territory or aspect of our life we vacate and concede.
That is why it is important for us to monitor Shaitan, and keep abreast of his tricks and activities. And then make each other aware of his machinations. And the Satanic Goings-on around us.
And help each other to cope with them.
If we don’t do this, we will be fighting a losing battle against Shaitan. Ours will at best be a rear-end action. And our defenses against Shaitan will crumble rapidly.
I have been calling the attention of Muslims, in America and elsewhere, to this important task at hand, going back all the way to the very early 1970s. But without much success.
Is anyone surprised?
Perfection belongs to God Almighty. It does not, cannot and should not belong to anyone else. Otherwise, they will all be Gods, a contradiction in terms and a meaningless expression.
For, by definition, God is someone who is “Perfect” in every conceivable way. And God is and can only be one. Otherwise, there is no God. Period.
And yet, having been created by that same Perfect God, and blessed by him with whatever skills, abilities and qualities he has bestowed upon me, it becomes virtually impossible for me to touch anything and not to seek to nail it as they say.
That is, not to do anything I do in a way, and to a level and standard, that does not leave a single stone unturned. That does not cross every “t” and dot every “i.” And makes you say, well, it looks like I cannot do much else with it.
And that includes doing whatever Allah allows and directs me to do, including the writing that I do from time to time.
Every time I sit at the computer, and write something, I ask myself:
Is everything the way it should be? Is every word, nay, every letter, in its place? And as it should be? And is every punctuation mark?
And is every fact, every bit and piece of information and every data point as accurate as possible?
And is every argument as sound, and is every conclusion as valid, as it should be?
How have my own Nafs and my Hawaa, and my own implicit biases and predilections, shaded and shaped what I am saying?
Overall, is the piece that I have written as “humanly perfect” as it is possible for a piece of writing to be, even though perfection is never our lot at any level?
I am driven to think it is becoming harder to meet those standards. Mainly for paucity of time, and the rush of life, and the demands that tend to pile up from every side.
But an Aayat comes to mind.
And what does it say about our Iman, or about our relationship with Allah, that the world we live in, our own personal life I mean, can accommodate and handle only one or two Aayats at a time! And that is all that is given to us in our hours and hours and hours of daily living?
The Aayat is this:
Sa-Yaj’alullahu Ba’da Usrin Yusraa!
What an Aayat! Allahu Akbar! Like every other Aayat in the Qur’an!
“Don’t let all the hardships break your spirit.
Better times are just around the corner.”
And to think there may still be people around in this world for whom Allah and Allah’s Book may not be enough or sufficient!
Nobody can tell others what to think. Or how to react when they read one of our posts. But still, we all need to be educated and trained into how we should process information.
And how to react to the information we process.
As a result, when I write what I do, my expectation is people will read it. And then they will reflect on it. And then they will react to what they read.
And one way to react to what people read is to ask questions pertaining what they read. And to ask questions that arise from what they have just read.
And then, whenever possible, people should go and do further research into the topics addressed and the points raised in the posts that people read.
And thus they will be further educated and trained.
And that is why I write: to educate and train people.
Take an example: Recently, I wrote a note on three Indian Muslim Traitors who helped British Colonizers to conquer India from its Muslim rulers.
Now, anyone who reads this note, and happens to be a Muslim, should be asking: Really? Goodness, me, I never knew that! Is that really what happened?
And then it would be perfectly natural for them to mutter to themselves:
“That is sad. In fact, how shameful is that? I hope that sort of thing never happens again.”
In a sense, there really is no distinction between “Private” and “Public,” or “Personal” and “Social and Professional” in the life of a Muslim.
A Muslim’s life is one seamless whole.
And it all belongs to Allah and must be used to fulfill Allah’s mandate of being Allah’s Khalifah on Earth.
Innee jaa’lun fil ardi Khalifah.
In the Qur’an, Ibrahim, Alaihis Salam, states this approach to human life like this:
Inna Salaatee wa Nusukee,
wa Mahyaaya wa Mamaatee
Lillahi Rabbil Aalameen.
And he says that is what is required of us:
Wa Bi-dhaalika Umirtu.
“That is what I am commanded to do.”
And then he says:
“It is just that I am the first to respond!
Wa Ana Awwalul Muslimeen!
Who knows who is next in line to respond to Allah’s Call!
Those of us who say or claim or pretend we are Working for Allah, we all have a simple motto in our life.
And it is:
Taking the Qur’an to Every Home and Heart that Needs It --
And Which One Does Not?
Regardless of how sincere or otherwise we may be, or how successful or otherwise our efforts may turn out to be, or how well or badly we may be doing our job, Qur’an remains our stated goal, our overriding purpose in life, and our motto.
Who knows, maybe, Allah will take us on our word and treat us based on our claims and not based on the true condition of our hearts or the success or failure of our efforts.
When people do not aggressively seek a position of power and influence, and Allah gives it to them on his own as it were, Allah then helps such people to handle the responsibilities that go with that job.
Mir Jaafar, Mir Sadiq and Nizam of Hyderabad had very different agendas from Sirajuddaulah and Tippu sultan.
The “Niyyat” of the first three named above was to help the British defeat the Muslim kings of India. And they succeeded in their goal and in their mission.
All three of them teamed up with the British Colonizers against Indian Muslim rulers and played a critical role in ending Muslim rule in India and in handing over the Indian Continent to the Colonizing British.
Thus began a whole new chapter in the global expansion of the British Empire! And all the evil that went with it.
Three Indian Muslim Traitors named above were the principal architects of that shameful history!
Continuing our conversation on Muslim Unity/Disunity, let us add this observation:
One reason why people disagree and act differently -- Muslims as well as others -- is the difference in their “Intentions.”
In their “Niyyaat” -- plural for Niyyat.
In other words, people disagree -- and even work against each other -- because they want different things. Because they have different agendas.
Or, maybe, they are fighting to take possession of the same thing: wealth, woman, title, job, territory, you name it.
According to the very first Hadith in Bukhari Sharif:
“Intentions are central to human actions.”
Innamal A’maalu Binniyaat!
Now, you go and figure out the rest!
We must resist the temptation to fit Islamic concepts, practices and teachings into the mold of our own experiences with modern life.
We come from different backgrounds and the understanding of many of us about Islam is often skewed and flawed.
Also. there are times, when our own ideas -- it is all part of Hawaa -- have a more powerful hold on our imagination than the ideas that Islam presents.
And it is not always easy, nor is it a quick process, to break that hold.
I know from my own personal experience.
For, at times it has taken me years and even decades to come out of the specific dumps and bayous and quicksands of my own personal training, education, culture and background.
And overcome my own biases and preconceived ideas and notions.
And subordinate them to Qur’an and Hadith and recast them all into a proper, accurate and authentic Islamic mold.
My submission to all my Muslim friends who are taking a vacation with their families:
Please do enjoy your vacation with your families.
For, your vacation could be your Ibaadat.
It could be your Worship!
May Allah keep you all in good health and give you tons and tons of fun -- both in this world and in the next world -- just like the Qur’an says:
Rabbanaa Aatinaa Fiddunya Hasanata,
Wa Fil Aakhirati Hasanah!
For a Muslim, slaving in Allah’s Work all night and all day, Working for Allah as we have been calling it, even vacation is a way to worship Allah.
Your vacation could be you Ibaadat.
Your vacation, therefore, is not only a way to recharge your bodies and minds, and cement your family ties, and opportunities to meet all kinds of new people, it is a way to replenish the treasures of your souls right here in This World.
And, at the same time, it is an extraordinary opportunity to rake up enormous amounts of Divine Blessings, and rewards, and Thawaab, in the Next World.
Happy Hunting People! Enjoy Your Vacation!
Every Muslim educational institution, from High School to College to University, must have a full-fledged program on Communication that would train the younger generation of Muslims in all kinds of Communication models, theories, methods and skills.
Islam is all about Communication. Allah is the best Communicator of all. Followed by Muhammad, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam.
And Qur’an is the finest form of Communication in Heaven and on earth, followed by Hadith Sharif.
It is time for Muslims to start training themselves to become the finest and most effective all-round communicators that they were meant to be.
And that they were for much of their history.
And that they need to be even now, today, so that they can do a good and effective job of taking Allah’s message to every home and heart that needs it.
And these Communication Programs need to consist of all kind of great courses on Journalism, Public Relations, Advertising, Media, and everything else communication most broadly and inclusively conceived.
One or two courses in Mass Com are not enough, by any stretch of the imagination. We need all kinds of complete and full-range programs that will produce top experts and professionals in all related fields of Communication -- and pretty fast too.
I am ready, willing, and, with help from God Almighty, able, to cobble programs of this kind for anyone in any high school, college or university anywhere -- at the drop of a hat as it were.
For a smart and successful Muslim businessman, there is no clearer path to even more Islam than his own business enterprise: to make his business grow and become stronger by leaps and bounds every hour, every minute.
That is where all the attention and all the energies need to go.
If Muslims understood this simple equation, they are not likely to continue in the kind of mess in which they are.
Businessmen -- and business women -- of Quraish got Islam off the ground the first time around. Is there a reason why today’s business people cannot do the same, provided they have the same commitment and character that the earlier Muslims brought to the table?
For those who understand Islam, and also understand the world, it is clear as daylight: Islam, properly understood, is business, and business, properly done, is Islam.
Pretty much the way I said a long a time ago: Islam properly understood is science, and science, properly done, is Islam.
A simple message from Dr. Firdaus Kamalodeen:
All is well, Alhamdulillah!
All is always well as long as Allah is in charge -- which is always and forever.
It is a requirement of this Deen of Islam that Muslims stick together. And they work together.
Here is a Hadith Sharif:
Yadullahi Ma’al Jamaa’ah!
One simple paraphrase:
“Allah’s hand is with the group.”
At one level, Islam is all about Jamaa’ah: The Group.
Even though it is all about the individual: Fard.
And the bottomline, as they say, about Jamaa’ah is the magic number 3: three people.
That is the minimum needed to establish Jum’ah.
And that is when -- when there are three individuals together -- “they,” according to Hadith Sharif, those three individuals, must elect one of “them” as leader.
What explanation or elaboration does any of this need?
Every breath we take is a miracle. An event totally beyond human control or comprehension.
If we don’t see that, we need to have our IQ tested. Not our faith, but our Intelligence Quotient.
And when the breathing mechanism in the human body ceases, life ceases. We call it death.
But death can, and it does, come to us even while we are alive, even while the breathing mechanism of the human system is intact and functional.
Every night, and often during daytime as well -- let me drop it on you as gently as I can -- we all die.
That is right!
Every single one of us -- man, woman and child. We all die at night -- when we sleep.
And those of us who have trouble dying -- falling asleep that is -- are forced to call the doctor and resort to chemical intervention of all kinds.
How hard is that to understand that sleep is exactly that: Death? That it is exactly what the Qur’an says it is?
Albeit, you can say, a milder, gentler and, perhaps, a sweeter form of death. And certainly a much less scary one.
“Tired Nature’s Sweet Restorer!” Isn’t that what someone called sleep? A long time ago?
“Death Light,” perhaps, is how they would say it in more modern language. But death, nevertheless.
The Qur’an is pretty clear on this subject. Read the Qur’an and find out for yourself.
That alone should tell you that this Qur’an is not, it could not have been, of human imagination or composition.
Least of all, produced by a man, Muhammad, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, whom no human being ever taught, tutored, educated, trained or mentored in any form or fashion.
Allah bless all those wonderful people who do all the amazing work that they do for Allah.
And Allah bless them even more for all the great leadership that they provide for this work -- this business of Working for Allah: Whatever it is and however it is done.
Of course the best, the right, the proper, and in fact the only, way to do this work -- Allah’s Work -- is to do it according to the light, the guidance and the instructions provided by the Qur’an and the Sunnah.
And of course, thereafter, if there is such a thing as “thereafter,” there is Science, and then there is something called Common Sense.
Let Muslims take a good look at this Four-Step Formula and see where they end up. For, nothing runs human affairs like these four components together do.
My offer of helping out with this or that project, whether it is Twitter or something else, like all else I do or do not do, is contingent on all the constraints I operate under. As if no one else has any constraints that they have to deal with.
So the basic formula is this. Let me spell it out -- as clear as I can:
You do the Niyyat -- form a firm intention that is -- and God Almighty,
Allah, Subhaanahu wa Ta’alaa, will do the work!
But there seems to be a catch. And the catch is this:
We humans cannot even come to the stage of making intentions,
or wanting something, or wishing for something good, nice and noble,
until our chain is yanked from above.
Go figure, as they say in America!
Or just pick up the Noble Qur’an and read the following Aayat Karimah:
Wa Maa Tashaa-oona Illaa An Yashaa-Allahu Rabbul A’alameen!
What an Aayat!
And what a book, this Qur’an!
Good Muslims hand out flyers and books to people. It is a great thing in itself. But it may not be enough.
Muslims -- let me say “generally” -- do not read. They are not -- by and large -- a reading people.
Most act as if the Divine Commandment “Read!” does not apply to them.
And it seems to me the more “religious” they are, the worse offenders they are in this regard: in reading that is. They do not read.
Some Muslims take the free books you give them and hand them to their littlest children to play with. That is who the Muslims are. Your people.
As for flyers, here is what practically everybody does with them, Muslim or non-Muslim. Instinctively, everybody more or less folds the fliers and stuffs them in their back pocket -- or in their shirt pocket maybe. Never to be brought to meet daylight again.
Some of them are a bit more practical and decisive. They drop your fliers in the nearest waste basket. Voila! So much for doing the Work of Allah!
And this is not just “Islamic” flyers. This is almost one of the general rules of human nature. Or human behavior, if you want.
So, what to do?
Engage! Engage! Engage!
Become a Daa’ii: the one who is on a mission to identify, invite and recruit people to Allah and to Allah’s Work. And not just someone who hands out stuff to people mechanically.
Have the fire in your heart. And then set every heart you meet on fire: with your love; with your knowledge; with your enthusiasm; and with your overwhelming sincerity!
Show people you care. And you do so truly and genuinely.
We look around and realize that only a few people seem to have remained with us in this work. Alhamdu Lillah, I am one among them and, Inshallah, I intend to stay with this work for as long as I live.
Even though we have all trained and taught so many people -- across generations. But they all seem to come, take from us what they want and can, and then leave.
But so what? If that is how Allah wants it, then that is how it is going to be.
And, in any case, who wants it any other way than how Allah wants it. Certainly not me.
But is that true though? Is anyone of us really alone? Is anyone of us working for Allah really and truly without company? And without a friend?
Who among us does not know that when we are alone, there is always a second one with us? And what a force, and what a presence, he is!
A force to be reckoned with, wouldn’t you say?
At the same time, when we take a moment and reflect upon our lives, it is hard not to see how fortunate and how blessed some of us have been.
Alhamdu Lillah, a few of us have done quite a bit, it seems to me, especially in the area of preparing up-to-date and suitable literature on Islam, Muslims and the World in English language and distribution of that literature locally and abroad.
Of course, there is much more that can and should be done in the area of distribution. And it will be.
No question, God Willing, we are in this for the long haul.
May Allah give us the health, the strength and the resources to continue his work the way he has blessed us to do it all these days -- and do it even better every day. For every second of the remainder of our lives.
And may he also send us more dedicated and sincere and committed and disciplined workers to help us in our work. In his work that is.
I never questioned anything Allah does. I don’t think so.
But, from time to time, the thought does cross my mind how Allah Almighty -- Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala -- seems to make one Umar or Abu Bakr or Ali or Umar bin Abdul Aziz (Radiyallahu Anhum Ajma’een) in the midst of all the hundreds of millions of the rest of us.
Especially in these latter times:
Wa Qaleelun Minal Aakhireen!
Not that the talent and potential is not there.
Or even the training and skills are missing.
It is just that all those things are mobilized in the advancement of the causes and issues set up for us by Shayaateenil Jinni Wal Insi.
(1) Devils from the Jinn Species.
(2) And Devils in human shape.
That is right. Don’t miss this one:
There are actual devils that come to you in the shape of humans.
Including the serving and protecting of the most narrowly -- and often wrongly -- defined Self-Interest.
Wa Hum Yahsiboona Annahum Yuhsinoona Sun’aa.
“And all the time they think what a great job they are doing!“
The fact is, it is actually Shaitan that decks up and decorates and paints in the most beautiful colors their actions for them:
Wa Zayyana Lahumush Shaitanu A’maalahum.
If we held this Aayat Karimah in front of us like a mirror, we will all see our faces in it.
Good Muslims -- and they are just incredibly good people -- worry about other Muslims. That is part of being a Muslim.
It is, in fact, a sine qua non of their faith of Islam.
But they do so mostly for their Deen. Are they being “Good Muslims” and all that.
And what will happen to them on the Day of Judgment?
So, what will be their fate after death? Will they, or will they not, enter Heaven -- go the Jannat?
But I somehow turned out different. I worry, it seems to me, more about their Duniya than I worry about their Deen.
The right Here and Now: in This World.
I worry about their health. And about their wealth.
And about their education -- I mean university and technical education of the best kind and highest quality.
And I worry about their economic and professional success.
And I worry about their family life and their marital bliss. And about the wellbeing of their children, if any.
But I worry that way about everybody: both Muslim and non-Muslim.
Allah says in the Qur’an that he has made all the arrangements for human beings to live a decent life on this earth:
Wa Lakum Fil Ardi Mustaqarrun wa Mataa-un Ilaa Heen.
He did not say Muslim or non-Muslim, good people or bad. He just said that to all humans of all kinds.
So, I just want humans, Muslims among them, to live a good life on earth, in This World, and then work for the Next World as best they can.
The Qur’an calls such Good Life by a most beautiful name:
So, I want all human beings of all stripes, shades and faith to take advantage of that offer from their Creator:
Fala Nuhyiyannahu Hayaatan Tayyibatan.
And that means the best health, wealth, family, community, society, government, environment and everything else.
Thereafter, it is their choice -- the choice of each individual among them -- whether or not to choose God.
That is how the Qur’an wants it. In the simplest and clearest of terms.
Wa Hadainaahun Najdain.
Choose God freely and with full volition.
No one can impose or force that decision upon you:
Laa Ikraaha Fid Deen!
Allahu Akbar, how beautiful this Deen of Islam is!
No human source could have designed this system -- so perfectly even and so completely level for everyone: believers as well as non-believers.
A most perfectly Level Playing Field! That is how, the Qur’an shows, God Almighty wants humans to play out their Game of Life on Earth.
That is one reason, it seems to me, why I ended up in Islam -- the way I did.
All my life, I wanted to build a school for Muslims that will train a new generation of leaders for the world.
Not just along the lines of Eton and Harrow, but to beat both of those great historic landmarks in our educational landscape.
A Dream School of sorts for Muslims. And for the entire world
It did not happen. My dreams, ambitions and plans came to naught.
While I am the only one responsible for these shattered dreams, and for all those plans gone awry, it is fair to say that it did not help that Muslims simply did not share my vision.
Even though education -- the best kind of education -- is what Islam is all about.
For the longest time, I had written off the Urdu language. But then Allah brought me back. And I started to study Ghalib and Iqbal -- and others -- all over.
I realized there are no poets in any language I know that can touch either one of these two great masters: Ghalib and Iqbal.
And I have defended that position everywhere since. And would love to do that for as long as I live.
It is understandable why people will lose interest in Urdu. Especially Muslims. But it is possible to bring the Urdu language back.
Hindus are picking it up. Many of them for their own reasons, as people generally do. But it is not impossible to get Muslims interested. It is going to be hard, maybe, but quite possible.
I have been privileged to talk to broad-based White non-Muslim audiences in US about Urdu poetry, and in particular about Ghalib and Iqbal, and, quite frankly, they were fascinated.
This Ummat to this day does not have a really good translation of the Qur’an in English. Based on what I know of course. I have not looked at every new thing that might have come out.
Will someone explain that to me. We are supposed to be 1.5 billion strong. Not that numbers of that kind ever impressed me.
When you say numbers, I think the epochal encounter between right and wrong at a place called Badr, during the second year of Hijrat -- Prophet Muhammad, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam’s, world-changing migration to Madinah.
I think about the number of Muslims in that encounter. And that number was no greater than 313.
And that tiny band of people was pitted against a well-armed army of 1000. And this small group of 313 men with character and courage beat the odds and won the day.
So, numbers mean nothing to me.
And then all that money in which this Ummat is supposed to be rolling: trillions upon trillions of dollars!
And I said that a long time ago: how Muslim money was running the world. Everything in the world, that is, except Islam.
And often working to bring Islam to its knees, if it could, and perpetuate the bondage in the life of the Muslims.
And then there are supposed to be 50 or 60 Muslim countries. Again numbers. And no one ever asks what kind of political, social, educational or economic and financial system these so-called Muslim governments operate under.
Whose interests are they all serving?
And who do most of their leaders really answer to: their own citizens or their paymasters, minders and handlers, both domestic and foreign?
So, all this good stuff and yet not a drop to drink, as they say? Not one real good translation of the Qur’an?
A simple man like me cannot fathom this miracle by this Ummat. Even though it is plain as daylight for all to see.
“God’s way in his world is that those who seek the truth shall find it.
Provided they are sincere, have a measure of humility, are committed and remain persistent in their search.
If they are all that, truth then shall come to them in God’s own good time, place and scale – as everything else would and does.
Just as the Qur’an says:
Kullu shai-y-in indahu bi-miqdaar.
“Everything God does is most meticulously planned and measured.”
Have not heard from you. Hope you will work with our mutual friend —— and address whatever the issues are.
There are few people like you and fewer still like ——. The results of your cooperation thus far are clear and powerful. They have made an impact on the world.
The thing to do now is for you all to come together to make our work go forward.
But do bear in mind Allah’s Work does not need anyone. Nor does it depend on anyone. On the other hand, it ls individuals and groups -- and nations and societies -- that rise and fall, live or perish, by this work.
Also, remember that coming together and working together as one solid ironclad entity (Ka-Annahum Bunyaanum Marsoos) has always been a challenge for Muslims.
Their one big hurdle in life has always been working together with discipline under good leadership. Generally, when one is there, the other goes missing.
But when the two come together, disciplined following and good leadership, the results are nothing short of spectacular. That is what changed the world and made the world the kind of wonderful place that it is today.
All of history is a lesson in this.
Another name for it is Islam. Nothing more, nothing less.
Light of Allah -- Noorullah -- while eternal and constant, strikes human hearts differently at different times.
And there are a lot of reasons why it is so.
We need to hold on to the moments of light and clarity Allah brings us, and move forward along the paths divinely illumined for us, and not allow ourselves to stagnate or regress or stumble off the path.
The world is full of problems – some small, some big; some comparatively easy to solve and some that seem to defy easy solutions.
One solution to many of the problems we face – and certainly one way of coping with these problems – is to move forward with the work of Allah that we have chosen for ourselves.
Those of us, that is, who have made that conscious decision and commitment in their lives.
The fact is that this is work that has been given to us by none other than God Almighty himself. He could have given this work to anyone anywhere.
But, in his wisdom and mercy, he chose to place that burden on us, unworthy and weak and insignificant as we are.
And by this work I mean our production and distribution of literature; our outreach efforts aimed at both Muslims and non-Muslims; and our activities that seek to invite people to Allah and introduce them to the Qur’an.
And this work includes our meetings, discussions and Dhikr sessions; our time with the Qur’an; and everything else that we undertake along these lines.”
What a glorious way to live!
And what easy solution to the problems we may face!
In dealing with Shaitan and his agents, the simple thing is this:
Don’t have a wandering eye and a weak heart.
When Shaitan and his agents come calling, as they will every opportunity they get, and remember they will come bearing all kinds of attractive offers and gifts, just read:
Aoodhu Billahis Samee-il Aleemi Minash Shaitanir Rajeem.
That is what Allah asks us in the Qur’an to do.
And tell them in simple English:
To talk to them, to engage with them, and to discuss things with them is to offer Shaitan and his progeny an invitation to enter.
And that is all Shaitan wants: for the door to give just a little. He can then push it open all the way -- before you even realize what has happened.
In life in general, or in this work that we have been calling Working for Allah, nothing and no one should get in the way of our doing our duty: Not our friends, not our relatives, not even our own children or parents or spouses.
The Qur’an is as clear on this subject as it can be.
And the Hadith too is quite graphic in its detail in treating this subject.
And the point of it all is that if we let any of these things get in our way and stop us from doing our duty to God, to God’s Messenger, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, to the Ummat of Islam, to humanity at large and to God Almighty’s creation in all forms and shapes, then we should be prepared for the worst punishment from Allah.
Islam is honoring our word and our commitment. And Islam means being a reliable, dependable, trustworthy and predictable person in all our dealings with each other.
If we cannot meet those minimum requirements of human decency, we have no business sullying the name of Islam mouthing all kinds of high-sounding cliches and platitudes.
The words of one such Hadith are:
Lawu Anna Fatimata Binta Muhammadin Saraqat,
“If my own daughter Fatima had committed that crime,
she would have received the same punishment as anyone else.”
I have always maintained that the fundamental qualities of being a good human being -- honesty, integrity, truthfulness, trustworthiness and such -- precede any claim, commitment or pretension we may have to Islam.
That is why Prophet Muhammad, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, himself was stamped by the whole world with the Twin Title of Truthful and Trustworthy way before the angel ever approached him with the Wahy or God’s Message.
Often, we notice things that are somehow not how they should be. We sense and we know something is wrong. And we also have a feeling, an idea, a notion, what it is.
But we hesitate to call things the way we see them. We lapse into shyness and, shall we say, into timidity, and we do not speak up. It is a silence born of weakness.
Psychologists may say it is a physical or psychological ailment or deficiency. But for Allah, it is a clear moral and spiritual issue.
We hesitate to speak up because we are fearful of consequences -- mostly for us: looking foolish or offending people.
And that is where the rub is:
Fearing people and thinking of how they will react, rather than fearing Allah and thinking of what he would want us to say or do.
Allah publicly admonishes Prophet Muhammad, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, on such an issue.
Wallahu Ahaqqu An Takhshaahu!
“You are more afraid of people than you are of Allah?”
So, if bluntness means frankness, and speaking the truth, we all need to be blunt and frank. And we all need to train ourselves into being able to do that.
Let us all read the Hadith and the Qur’an and see how this concept figures in both of them.
Neither Allah nor his Rasul, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, seem to be too tolerant of willful ambiguity and vagueness in speech or of hesitation and vacillation in action, when the situation calls for clear speech and decisive action.
Speaking the truth -- and saying the right thing -- has always been the distinguishing feature of Islam throughout history.
It sets Islam apart as a system directly from God, rather than being a creature of human contingency and convenience.
If you are a human being, you have no choice but to work with other humans.
People just like you.
If you look at yourself in the mirror everyday, you should know that the people you run into on a daily, hourly, basis, are all going to be people just like you: Perfect in their own eyes, maybe, but flawed and deficient on practically every other scale of human measurement.
That is how their God created them: Imperfect, incomplete, error-prone, blundering, self-righteous, impatient and fickle.
And yet, interacting with fellow-humans in all kinds of meaningful, productive, positive and enjoyable ways is what human life is all about. But it is not easy to do that, not always anyway.
And often it is a challenge. And at times, frankly, it could be a pain.
So, what do you do?
Do you run and hide? But where will you go? Every aspect of your life from your birth to your growing up to your death and burial is so dependent on them -- other humans?
The Hadith Sharif, which I paraphrase here, is clear as could be:
“That Muslim, or Believer, who mixes and deals with others, and puts up with the problems and pain they cause, is better than one who avoids them and hides from them.”
Misquoting a Hadith of Prophet Muhammad, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, is as grave a responsibility, and perhaps as serious a sin, as misquoting an Aayat from the Qur’an.
Perfection is for God. Simple. If he is not perfect, he cannot be God.
And nobody else can be perfect, because then they all would be God.
But excellence is for all of us human beings.
As a result, to be born human and not to seek excellence, and not to engage in the deliberate and unremitting pursuit of excellence in everything we do, is to turn our back on God.
Now go and read the Hadith Sharif on something called Itqaan.
I recall the words: “An Yutqinahu!”
Am I right?
Professor Kalamazad Mohammed reacted in an e-mail to Dr. Pasha’s recent article on American Health Industry. Below is a paraphrase of his reaction:
I gave Dr. Pasha’s Health Industry article a quick read. My reaction is something like this:
Muslims joined in!
And those Muslims from whom it was expected that they would know better, and therefore would help to correct the situation, decided to make themselves ”holy” instead and became priests and pundits and shaikhs and Imams.
As Dr. Pasha pointed out in a piece titled Commitment to La ilaha illa Allah, “those Working for Allah should train themselves to define their life and identity by this work, Allah’s Work, not define this work -- Allah’s Work -- by their situations in life and the complications and needs that life unleashes upon them, both good and otherwise.”
But, speaking generally, it seems to me Muslims are still at the point of fitting “Working for Allah” into the convenience and requirements of their own personal lives, instead of fitting their lives in and around “Working for Allah.”
This is yet another concept about Islam that Muslims seem to be having trouble fully understanding. As a result, it becomes a moot question to what extent Muslims will be able to share this concept with non-Muslims as they are supposed to.
Where is the surprise, then, if Muslims are generally unable to meet their obligation of “Taking the Qur’an to every home and heart that needs it?“
I write to educate and train our people.
If our people do not read, they are no use to us. They will remain uninformed and confused. And Islam has no use for uninformed confused people.
And if our people do not connect and engage with us in a systematic and sustained manner, through e-mail and otherwise, we don’t have them.
So far as we are concerned, they simply don’t exist.
This week’s Pasha Hour International was different from what other people would have dealt with just before Ramadan was to begin.
Normally, others would have spoken about Ramadan issues. But Dr. Pasha stuck to his normal approach of dealing with fundamental issues about Islam, Muslims and the World.
Namely, Truth and Untruth and how to tell the difference between the two.
1400 years ago, Dr. Pasha said, Islam came into this world and created a society free from religious and political tyranny.
This was something Thomas Jefferson dreamed about in America nearly 1100 years later, when he said: “I have sworn upon the altar of God eternal hostility to all forms of tyranny over the mind of man!”
Dr. Pasha called on Muslims everywhere to spend this glorious month of Ramadan trying to reach out to non-Muslims by taking the message of Islam to them.
And in trying to make the world understand that God Almighty is everybody’s God. And that he blesses everyone everywhere: Muslims as well as non-Muslims, the good as well the bad.
And it is his blessings that keep us and the world going.
During the month of Ramadan, the Devil and his progeny are chained and locked up. But just before that happened, the Devil had his final hurrah in the beautiful city of Portland in the state of Oregon.
Two men, one a fresh college graduate, and the other a 20-plus year army veteran, fell prey to the sheer evil of Satan in human shape, who slashed their throats with a knife.
The criminal lunatic was ranting against two young Muslim women. Three men intervened. The man turned on them and slashed their throats. Two men lost their lives, one is in serious condition in the hospital.
When you look at what these three men did, and the price they paid for their bravery, it is America at its best:
Saying and doing the right thing and trying to defend and protect the weak.
At the same time, what the assailant did may also represent America at its worst:
Racial bigotry and hate turning violent and deadly
every time there is an opportunity and safe passage.
In that Portland incident, both the good and bad parts of America played out their scripted roles. That is how America welcomed this Ramadan 1438.
Now, in my view, here is what Muslims of America can and should do: Every mosque throughout America should light candles during Iftar in the memory of the brave men who risked their lives to defend two young Muslim women against racist, xenophobic persecution and harassment.
It would be their way of saying:
“Thank you for standing by us America,
even as many in America today have declared
an Open Season on Islam and Muslims.
We will not forget you.”
May God Almighty grant the affected families comfort and solace!
And a complete and quick recovery to the injured man.
If you know anything about computers -- and who in this world doesn’t? -- you should know that your computer will eat what you put on it. It will make it disappear. And it has a thousand ways of doing it.
What you should do from day one is learn to save and copy and store away in all kinds of places, including USBs, the material you put on the computer.
This should be the first thing you do and the first thing you learn.
And then, even if you think something is irrevocably lost, such as a list of your area’s or your country’s or the world’s mosques and Islamic Centers and such, how hard is it for you to sit down for a few hours or for a few days and weeks and do the research all over again and recreate that list?
This is not Rocket Science, is it?
Or is it Brain Surgery?
A Muslim’s -- any Muslim’s -- Commitment is La Ilaha Illa Allah.
And that means putting all other Commitments in life below one’s Commitment to Allah and his Rasul, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam.
And that means Allah’s Work takes priority and precedence over everything else: job, education, family, fun, friends, health, wealth, everything.
But for a Muslim who understands Islam, the two commitments are one and the same:
(1) Commitment to Allah and his Work and
(2) Commitment to Life and its Requirements.
Therefore, those Working for Allah should train themselves to define their life and identity by this work, Allah’s Work, not define this work -- Allah’s Work -- by their situations in life and the complications and needs that life unleashes upon them, both good and otherwise.
When they can do that, it is only then that the Qur’an truly begins to make sense. Otherwise, it is only a mysterious book, in a foreign language, and often in bad English, from beyond the skies, from another world.
Working for Allah is full-time work. It is not part-time work.
Nor should it be way down on your To-Do List. It should be number one, two and every other number on that list.
In fact, all your other work, if there is such a thing, derives its legitimacy, and its blessings from God Almighty, based on how committed you are to do Allah’s Work, and how seriously you take that commitment, and how hard you work to fulfill it.
Allah bless the man who only recently made the comment I paraphrase here.
The more time you spend doing Allah’s Work, the more time you seem to have on your hands for your own personal work. There is more Barakah in your own time and resources.
And, conversely, the less time you spend doing Allah’s Work, the less time there seems to be for your own personal work – if there is such a thing as that.
For, in Islam, all work is Allah’s Work, even feeding your own family.
Allahu Akbar, what a sentiment! What a noble and profound thought!
Does anyone else feel the way this gentleman seems to feel, and experience things the way he seems to do? Because I can see quite clearly what he means?
Or is it a special line God Almighty has opened up to him, much to the envy of the rest of us?
I don’t know if this is called a redundancy or a tautology, or even gibberish, but it strikes me that there really is no fool more foolish or dangerous than an ignorant fool.
Today’s definition of Islam, if you have not heard it from me before, and even if you have, is a most simple one, and it is this: “Blessing the World – the whole world – without regard to race or religion, and without regard to gender, class or nationality.
I don’t know what this Outreach Thing really means, even though I do use that expression “outreach” from time to time myself.
In any case, here is a bit of training for those engaged in outreach efforts, whatever they are.
I sound as if Muslims have a choice: to do outreach work or not to do it. Muslim really don’t. They don’t have a choice.
For, Islam is outreach, period. And that means for anyone to be a Muslim and not to “outreach” in some form or fashion is an oxymoron.
It is a little bit like diving into a deep pool and thinking about not getting wet. It never was and it never will be.
But whatever that outreach thing means, if it has anything to do with doing what all the prophets of God, Alaihim Assalam, did, then I suppose, in our times, it comes down to Taking the Qur’an to Every Home and Heart that Needs It -- and Which One Does Not?
And that boils down to making every effort, and expending every ounce of energy and every microsecond of time and every dollar of wealth and resources with which Allah Almighty might have blessed you, to reach out to all kinds of people in this world -- both Muslim and non-Muslim -- with the message of Islam and inviting them all to the path of Allah.
It is basically a Sales Job.
The difference is while others sell cars and things, you are selling Haqq: Truth.
And while the best the others can offer is a “good deal” on some kind of a worldly commodity, or service, you are offering the greatest possible deal on the greatest possible prize not only in all of this world but also in the next world: Jannat.
And beyond Jannat itself Ridwaanullah!
Wa Ridwaanun Minallahi Akbar!
And if that is your mission, to invite the whole world to Allah, you most likely also need what the prophets of God, Alaihimus Salaam, possessed and displayed: Unswerving Persistence.
Call it Sabr and Istiqaamat if you want.
I don’t want to sound rude or disrespectful in the choice of my words to describe this, but it is like saying you need a pretty “Thick Skin” when you are Working for Allah. And that means you should be able to handle rejection, and disappointment, and handle them well, and be able to handle a lot of them.
How can you not? All salespeople do have that quality. They handle a lot of rejection. And they persevere!
And all they are asking, these sellers of cars and things, is to part with a little bit of your money in return for something tangible and physical and wonderful.
But you, you are so very different. You are asking people to put their entire life on the line, and all of that for nothing they can see or touch in this world.
They will have to wait to die before they take delivery of what they paid for in this world with all kinds of toil and trouble and sacrifice and wealth and hard work.
Don’t you think it is fair they should balk a bit? These people that you invite to come to Allah? And they should ask you a few times to come back before they even listen to what you have to say?
I don’t know how many and what kind of blessings God Almighty will shower on those who take the time and trouble to spell out “Assalamu Alaikum,” rather than fall victim to meaningless ACRONYMs like “AA.”
In doing this what may appear to many people to be a very small thing, these good and blessed people actually are, among other things, safeguarding our one-of-a-kind Islamic heritage, which comes directly from of the pages of the Qur’an, and which is also derived directly from the Hadith, and which has been consistently practiced by all the earlier generations of Islam all through 1400 years of our Islamic history on this earth.
It is that easy to safeguard Islam, and some of the best of human civilization and culture, in this world.
People sometimes ask us what kind of literature we have, and what kind of literature we make available to individuals and organizations, from churches and mosques to anyone who cares.
We provide audio and print material, free of charge, that brings Islam home to readers and listeners, one individual concept at a time.
And it does so mostly using the Qur’an.
And it is all part of our commitment to Take the Qur’an to Every Home and Heart that Needs It -- and Which One Does Not?
But why wait? Why not go to www.IslamicSolutions.Com and find out for yourself!
Muslims are Muslims and I guess they will always be Muslims.
Sincere, good people write to them about Islam out of the goodness of their heart and Muslims don’t even bother to reply or write back. Even though answering a Muslim’s Salaam is a requirement -- Waajib as some people would call it.
Those then are your people: the Muslims.
But make no mistake, these are the people you will have to work with, for as long as you live -- such as they are and such as you are.
That is, when you are not working, day and night, with Non-Muslims, trying desperately to reach out to them and invite them to Allah and to Islam and to Qur’an and to Muhammad, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam.
Those who do this, and never tire of doing this, I mean this business of reaching out to both Muslims and non-Muslims, in the face of all the rejection and cold treatment they get, the Qur’an is quite vocal about them.
The Qur’an says:
Ulaa-ika Humul Muflihoon!
“They are the winners.”
If only Muslims understood the role Islam played in educating the world, and dedicated themselves to carry that ball forward, what a different world this would be!
Muslims are into everything except education.
Namaz, Roza, Hajj, Umrah, you name it, Muslims would like to throw themselves into these things, which is great, and which is what they should do, for, that, as we all know, is Islam.
Buniyal Islamu Ala Khamsin!
“Five things are the basis of Islam.”
But what about Education? What about all those Aayats about Education?
And what about all those Hadith on Education?
And what about the entire life of Muhammad, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, that was spent in educating the world? Starting out with some of the most backward and ignorant -- Ummiyyeen -- people in the world?
Isn’t this one Hadith enough? Just this one Hadith that says:
Innamaa Bu’istu Mu’alliman!
“Just think of me as an Educator!”
Will the Tableegh people pay attention to this Hadith?
Just imagine how much the educated world of today owes Prophet Muhammad, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam.
And yet how ignorant and ill-informed and uncaring and ungrateful that world is about him.
Prophet Muhammad, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, came into this world in early Seventh Century. That was more than 1400 years before our time.
That was also a time when reading and writing were generally forbidden for everyone except members of the royal family, the rich landlords and the most privileged few.
Many people were put to the sword for daring to teach themselves or others how to read and write.
In such a climate, Prophet Muhammad, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, came and offered the world a “Book” – Al-Kitaab.
And he called that book The Reading – Al-Qur’an.
And he issued a general command to the whole world – to all of humanity – saying: “Read!”
Then he said if any man or woman – mind you, he also included women in this equation – taught himself or herself one single passage of that Book, Al-Kitaab, big or small, that would be more than 200 times better than worshiping God in other ways.
And he said that to Hazrat Abu Zarr, a companion of his, who was a most devout and God-fearing individual, given to worshiping God a great deal.
He didn’t say “200 times better,” he said “More than 200 times better.”
Does the world of today know anything about this man, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam!
And does the educated world of today know anything about this most amazing of miracles that he gave the world: the Miracle of Universal Education?
Do the Muslims know about this fact?
Do the non-Muslims know about this most miraculous fact?
What would it take for the Muslims to get out and share this fact with the rest of the world?
And what would it take for the non-Muslims of this world to inquire and find out about it?
And then, thereafter, how about all us, both Muslim and non-Muslim, showing just a tad bit of gratitude to him, and saying: May God Almighty Bless Him!
Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam!
Allah bless the people who finance, manage and run our weekly radio program Pasha Hour International. I marvel at their dedication and their sustained hard work.
Sometimes they warn us that the Government has decided to “Preempt” our program -- whatever the reason.
That expression “Preemption” never ceases to amuse me. A part of Colonial legacy.
But my deeper worry always is, and I warn all of us on that account, about Shaitan trying to “Preempt” our lives.
His commitment is, and all indications are, that he neither tires nor slackens in his efforts to “Preempt” our lives and put them on a different track than the one that leads to Allah and to our home Jannat from which he got us ejected through his lies and machinations the first time.
So, people, don’t let Shaitan preempt your lives!
Muslims came to America. No, change it to: Allah brought Muslims to America.
And to other parts of the West.
To breathe the life-giving air of freedom and opportunity as they had never done before for generations in their own natural habitat of hereditary monarchy, feudalism, dictatorship, tribalism and rampant corruption.
Visit the Aayat Karimah:
Wa Kuntum Amwaatan Fa-Ahyaakum!
I think it is an Aayat of the Qur’an. Will someone please check and make sure.
Paraphrase of the Aayah:
“You were basically lifeless and he brought you back to life.”
“You were dead, he gave you life.”
Dazzled by this new life, Muslims in Europe and America did all kinds of things -- except, some would say, be faithful to Islam and carry out their God-given mandate of taking the Qur’an to every home and heart that needs it -- and which one does not?
So, the more enterprising among Immigrant and First Generation Muslims, especially those with a penchant for a bit of hustling, launched all kinds of projects they called Halal: Halal this, Halal that, and Halal Everything Else!
Halal stuff of every kind rained on God’s earth like Manna, including things like Halal Booking -- whatever that means.
But one thing I have not seen. Unless, of course, I missed it somehow.
That is why I am calling on the new generation of Islamic Hustlers in the West to wake up to the possibilities of Halal Entertainment.
Europe and America are all about Entertainment, are they not? So, how can you let this cash cow slip through your fingers like this?
And, remember, you can always get a Jewish Kosher Authority to certify your entertainment product “Halal” for a fee.
I am amazed how nobody ever thought of this before!
Half a chance they get, Muslims will run and hide. They will always try to find the easy way out.
They will be constantly looking for an escape route.
Not because they are bad people. But because they are people. Just people.
Because they are Human Beings, plain and simple.
And as humans, that is part of the mysteries of their nature. That is the way their God made them as people.
Our job, therefore, is to chase after Muslims. We must not let Muslims escape. And we must not let Muslims rest or doze off.
We must challenge and rattle them.
Just like the Qur’an does. Every step of the way.
“Don’t you, Can’t you see?”
The Qur’an demands.
“What, your hearts have padlocks on them?”
The Qur’an taunts and teases and admonishes and prods and challenges and throws down the gauntlet.
Am Alaa Quloobin Aqfaaluhaa?
Therefore, we must keep after Muslims -- for as long it is decent, honorable and legal to do so.
Within those universal parameters of what the Qur’an calls Ma’roof, we should not let Muslims get away -- or rest or slack off.
Muslims don’t get it that while individual work on the part of each and every one of us is most important, and it is required, and Allah helps all, the hand of Allah, according to the Hadith, is really with the Group.
In the language of the Hadith such an organized group is called Jama’ah.
Here is the Hadith Sharif:
Yadullahi Ma’al Jamaa’ah!
China has double sidewalks. One side for people with their heads buried in their cell phones. And the other side for people with their heads free and functioning and available to the outside world.
I think that is a brilliant idea, what China is doing. For, walking the sidewalks or corridors of buildings is becoming a challenge, as are stairs and even doorways.
Welcome to another face of Modernity!
Of which, I take it, Muslims are now an integral part.
The fact is the Internet makes people busy: more busy than they ever were. And that includes the Muslims.
And that takes away from them the time for Allah’s Dhikr, and for serious reading and reflection.
And for the Tilaawat (Reading and Recitation) of the Qur’an.
And from this other thing that we have been calling Working for Allah. One way of doing which, we have been saying, is to try and Take the Qur’an to Every Home and Heart that Needs It -- and Which One Does Not?
People may give “Being Busy” as excuse for not doing it, Not Working for Allah I mean, or for doing it less than they would like to, or for cutting corners when they do it, or by getting so tired and exhausted after prolonged interface with the Internet and the Social Media that they are no longer fit for human consumption.
On the Day of Judgement, God Almighty will ask us we were busy doing what.
The Hadith Sharif addresses that contingency in the simplest and clearest of terms. The Hadith says, and I am paraphrasing it here broadly, basically:
“And You Were Busy Doing Precisely What?”
Another way of putting it is:
“Just how did you spend your life?”
If I recall the words right, that part of the Hadith goes something like this:
Wa ‘An Umrihee Feema Afnaahu!
And the person will not be allowed to move from his or her place till they have provided a satisfactory answer to that question:
“What did you do with your life?”
We write. Whatever it is that Allah enables us to write. From time to time.
And there are those among us, Allah bless them, who post some of our writings on www.IslamicSolutions.Com.
And then there are those among us, Allah bless them too, who from time to time catch some typos in the writings. Either when the writings are on their way to posting or after they are posted.
And then they move on. These wonderful people. Allah bless them. As all or most good people would do. Never to return again, in a manner of speaking. They never check on those typos to see if they are fixed or not.
That is not how Muslims do business! That is not how most people do business.
It is not their responsibility any more!
But that is not how they do it, these same people, when their child gets sick and they call the doctor. They stay with it and stay with it, and keep calling the doctor, till the child is fully recovered.
And that is because the child is their child. And that child is their life. And that child, to say, the least, is their “personal” responsibility.
But somebody writing stuff on Islam, Muslims and the World? And posting it on some website on the Internet? That is, at best, Allah’s Work.
It is not their baby, as they say in America. So, they do their “duty,” which is to alert someone: “Hey, there is a typo!”
And they move on. Never to think about it again. Never to return to it again.
But that is not how they would do it if this child were their own child! If this baby were really and truly their baby!
And the truth is, Allah’s Work is their work. And Allah’s Work begins where their own lives reach their fullest richness, potential and promise: health, wealth, education, business, family and everything else!
Which part of this Aayat Karimah is not clear?
Lillahi Rabbil Aalameen
Wa Bi-Dhaalika Umirtu
Wa Ana Awwalul Muslimeen!
Here is a paraphrase of that Aayah:
Without a doubt,
And my sacrifice,
And, in fact, my entire life,
And even my death,
They are all for Allah,
The Master of the Worlds!
And that is what I was told to do!
I was commanded to do!
And of course I am the first to submit!
And to accept and obey that command!”
Here is the funny part of it. If it is funny at all. The word Aayat itself means miracle. And here we are, holding the Aayats of the Qur’an in our hands, all the time, and wondering where the miracles are.
Looking for miracles everywhere and the miracles are right there: In Our Hands.
Muslims simply share the ignorance and naivete in which we find entire humanity trapped.
Here is an Aayat I recently rendered into English. I had quite a bit of trouble doing it, as it happens to me every time I sit down to translate an Aayat of the Qur’an. It is never easy translating the Qur’an.
How can it be?
Here is quite possibly the most flawed human being on earth trying to render into his own most flawed and faulty language the most perfect word of the most perfect God -- directly from the Qur’an. How is that ever going to be happen?
And I have made it repeatedly clear that there is no such thing as “translating” the Qur’an. Only “paraphrasing” it to the best of your ability.
I maintain that it is generally the case even when the text is not the Qur’an but something else. This is true practically of any language of the world.
In any case, the Aayat in question was this:
Innee Dhaahibun Ilaa Rabee,
I “translated” it as:
“I am on my way to my master.
He shall show me how to get there.”
But I would have liked to have said it somewhat differently also and been at the same time quite faithful to the text of the Qur’an -- that is, to the extant it is possible for any human being to do that.
I could have said, and I may still have been in the ballpark “translationwise“:
“I am headed toward my God.
He shall tell me exactly what to do or how to do that.”
But that would have been just the beginning. For, the word “Hudaa” or “Hidaayah” is home to all those meanings and much, much more.
And that is part of the miraculous nature of the Qur’an -- of every Aayat of the Qur’an.
Too many Muslims have too many excuses why they do what they should not, and do not do what they should.
Here is my bottomline message for the Muslims on this Excuse Making Business:
“Even if the Sky Falls,
it is not an excuse for you for not doing what your were supposed to do.”
Our Message is simple and clear. It is ancient Islam in its timeless capsule of four words: “No God but God.”
In the Qur’an, those four immortal words are: Laa Ilaaha Illaa Allah!
And our Method is Peace in every conceivable way. The Divine Expression in the Qur’an As-Salaam captures the spirit as well as the dimensions and implications of our methodology of comprehensive Peace on Earth leading to an eternal life of Peace in Heaven.
We are not pacifists but People of Peace.
In the inevitable struggles of life, we are not bystanders or spectators, but activists and full participants. We share everybody’s pain everywhere.
And yet Peace is our first name; Peace is our last name; Peace is our middle name; Peace is our Calling Card; and Peace is our fingerprint and our signature.
And we work and live and die for that glorious purpose of Peace: As-Salaam.
“Just like all those wonderful people on whom God showered his blessings such as prophets; those who rushed to embrace and champion God’s divine message on earth; those who gladly gave their life for God; and good and decent and just and honorable people everywhere.”
“And what glorious and wonderful and exalted company they all are!”
Ma’alladheena An’amallahu Alaihim
Wa Huasuna Ulaa-ika Rafeeqaa!
Life on earth, to say the least, is a mixed bag. And Muslims, like most people on earth, are a fairly confused, mixed up, people.
This is not to blame Muslims, or anyone else, but just to point to, and to recognize, a fundamental reality about human life on earth.
For me, however, the life of a Muslim ought to be about Allah: God the Almighty. Allah first. And Allah last. And Allah in the middle -- and everywhere.
Just like the Qur’an says:
Huwal Awwalu Wal Aakhir!
You start everything with Allah. And you end everything with Allah.
And you derive everything from Allah. And you look at everything with the light of Allah.
And you live and work and die to bring Allah’s creation back to Allah.
That is Islam. And that is where I want to be.
Innee Dhaahibun Ilaa Rabbee,
“I am on my way to my God.
He shall show me how to get there.”
I know Allah is most forgiving and most accepting of excuses from his slaves, and he is most compassionate and generous.
Yet I wonder how in the world I will ever account for all those seconds and minutes and months and years I spent not doing his work however we may want to characterize it or define it.
Jannat doesn’t come cheap or easy. There is a lot of toil, tears and heartache that goes into earning it.
All those virgins the mealy-mouths and the mercenaries in the media and elsewhere rave and rant about, they come with an astronomical price tag: a clean mind; a pure heart; and a mouth that is not putrid with spewing trash-talk and vile propaganda against those who cannot defend themselves.
The Devil is a smart investor. He likes maximum returns on his investment of time and effort. So, often, he chooses his targets very carefully. Bad people are already in the bag for him and he knows that.
So why should he waste his time with them, right? They will be only too happy to do his bidding. All he has to do is snap his fingers and they will come running to him like hungry, lovesick poodles. It is the good guys the Devil worries about most.
His biggest challenge is how to put them on a slippery slope: lower them a notch or two from where they are and send them to their downfall and to eventual perdition.