Sunday, 30 December 2012
The Disease of Forgetting Death
بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ
The following is adapted from a swuhbah from Shaykh Muhammad Nazhim Adil al-Haqqani (q.s.) on the 23rd April 2010.
Rasulullah (s.a.w.) said religion was about advising one another and he advised us to be truly humble in our journey towards Allah (s.w.t.). We must pray for goodness upon others along the journey too. We must pray for a good end for everyone. We are preparing for that great gathering on the Day of Judgement, a Day in which all of us will be Gathered to face Judgement. We are preparing ourselves for that difficult Day when we will present every one of our deeds in the Divine Presence, to the Lord of Heavens, for Judgement.
‘Ali ibn Abi Thalib (k.w.), the fourth Caliph said humanity is asleep and when they die, they will awaken. One who is sleeping, cannot understand, cannot hear and cannot perform any good acts. Guides are responsible for awakening heedless people and sleeping hearts. Teachers in religion must understand their purpose and intention. If they just concentrate on condemning the practices of other Muslims, they will merely chase people away from Islam. Accusations and finger-pointing do not bring people to an understanding of anything. We are not prisoners in jail, so harsh methods of teaching are not Islamic. We should stop such methods of preaching. We must begin by awakening the sleeping students, for one cannot teach a person who is asleep. We have been ordered to be a smiling ummah, for the Prophet (s.a.w.) said that a smile to people is charity. We are Muslim brethren. To be harsh with fellow believers is a bid'ah.
We must not be fanatic about our beliefs. We are not here to show that our beliefs are superior. It is not anybody’s place to justify their ideology by claiming that all others will be damned to Hell. Extremism is not part of religion. Harshness and fanaticism remove the sweetness of faith from the followers and it causes people to leave the religion. Fanatics try to imprison Muslims within four walls: haram, shirk, bid'ah and kufr. To them, it is as if the entire religion revealed by Allah (s.w.t.) consisted of only what lay within these narrow boundaries.
A guide who mixes dunya in his teachings, makes many mistakes, because he is influenced by his selfish desires. A true guide takes his students to akhirah. However, many people do not find such true guides because they are not truly seeking to study the real Islam that was brought by the Prophet (s.a.w.). They are seeking dunya even in their pursuit of religion.
Deviant sects with extremist ideologies are in their sunset days. People eventually abandon them and seek true teachings. Shaykh Nazhim (q.s.) gave the analogy of a field of crops that had grown green and produced its harvest; after that, the harvested field would slowly turn yellow and wither. Even if the farmer watered the dying crops and fertilised them, it would not bring the crops to life again. Their time had passed. Deviant and extremist sects had reared their ugly heads in the past, financed by money from the oil-rich Arab lands. But now, even with money being poured freely to grow these extremist ideas, Muslims have begun to reject these false ideas, and are returning to real Islam.
Real Islam, as practised by the Ahl as-Sunnah wa al-Jama'ah, is likened to a forest which had just gone through winter – all its leaves had fallen, it has turned brown, but it was still alive and able to regenerate, unlike the dying crops in the earlier example. Now, we have come to spring again – the trees have all turned green, they are growing in beauty and strength – while the dying crops slowly wither away. No one can stop the true teachings of the Ahl as-Sunnah wa al-Jama'ah from extinguishing the deviant ideologies that were so rampant in the recent past. Spring has come, and it is here to stay, and fruitful trees, unlike crops, are made to last the seasons. The Way of Haqq will stand firm henceforth while the Bathil ways fade away. Bathil can never overcome Haqq.
The other 72 sects are small groups, together forming a minority. None of them have the following of the Ahl as-Sunnah wa al-Jama'ah, the majority. Rasulullah (s.a.w.) told us that if his ummah were to split up, we must follow the majority, not the breakaway sects. Those who, despite knowing the truth, still persist in remaining with the breakaway sects, must be prepared to receive Divine Retribution, just like what befell those before us. It is easy for Allah (s.w.t.) to Send punishment via the smallest of creations like viruses and bacteria.
The disease of this generation, is that we forget death. We are physically with our guides, but our hearts yearn for dunya. We forget that while we walk proudly on this earth today, tomorrow we shall be buried under it. We must always remember that our destination is the graveyard.