Wednesday, 28 August 2013
Building on the Good Gained in Ramadhan
بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ
The following is transcript of discourse delivered by Mawlana Waffie Mohammed, on Thursday, 23rd August 2013
After the Blessed month of Ramadhan, we pray that Allah (s.w.t.) would have Blessed us tremendously for all our efforts made in the Blessed month; and today we would have been much better as a believer, both morally and spiritually. Allah (s.w.t.) has Established a law regarding His Connection with the believers and how we can get closer to Him. He Says good erases evil. We have a good example of the application of this in the tradition of Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.) regarding the month of Ramadhan where he is reported to have said, “Whoever fasts Ramadhan with faith and seeking the Reward of Allah will have his past sins Forgiven.” So, good removes evil. What is important for us to keep in mind all the time is that faith does not stay static. Nothing in this world is static. Even Allah (s.w.t.) Says about Himself:
… every day in (new) Splendour doth He (Shine)! (Surah ar-Rahman:29)
So, nothing remains stagnant; even our faith. Our faith can increase or decrease. In connection with this, Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.) is reported to have said, “Iman increases or decreases.” Ramadhan is that occasion where Allah (s.w.t.) Allowed the believers to increase their faith tremendously through the fast, extra worship and trying to be careful of thoughts and actions for His Sake. Our reason for doing all of this is to get closer to Allah (s.w.t.).
When Allah (s.w.t.) Wanted to Show mankind how they can get closer to Him, He invited Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.) into His Divine Presence on the night of the Mi’raj. And he, being our model and that one who demonstrated real success in this life, if we were to follow him and engage in much of the actions that he used to do we would, insha’Allah, also increase our faith and gain closeness to our Lord. But if after the blessed is over, we fall back into some thoughts and actions that would bring about dark spots on our heart we would be reducing our faith. It all depends on the individual and their intention, their desire and their activity. The reason for saying this is because Allah (s.w.t.) Says in the Holy Qur’an that those who try to keep their soul bright and shinning are the real successful ones.
“It is those who believe and mix not their beliefs with wrong ― that are (truly) in security, for they are on (right) guidance.” (Surah al-An’am:82)
Scholars are of the opinion that at the time of doing a wrong deed, our faith is not strong because at that time, we are not mindful that Allah (s.w.t.) is with us. This does not mean to say that we are free from faults and mistakes. Allah (s.w.t.) Says:
If Allah were to Punish men for their wrongdoing, He would not leave, on the (earth), a single living creature ... (Surah an-Nahl:61)
What does this ayat tell us? That we do a lot of wrong, knowingly and unknowingly. However, Allah (s.w.t.) has Given us this Great Blessing, that even if we falter, we can wipe out the blemishes through repentance and engaging in good deeds. The point is that we have a good head start coming out of the month of Ramadhan, therefore, we must not lose it and keep building on it. Some people cannot understand life so they behave like the spider. They invest all their efforts and recourses to build a big “web” paying no heed to returning to their Lord and without warning it can all come crashing down leaving them destitute and back at square one. For us, it is a simple reality; if when we exhale and the oxygen does not go back in that is it, all our work and aspirations come to an end. And what next? What about the meeting with our Lord? And this is the message of life. We must be careful all the times. We want that when our last breath comes out our soul will be transported to a beautiful place and the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.) is reported to have said, “The soul of the believer is in a bird hanging from a tree in Paradise until Allah Returns it to his body on the day He Resurrects him.”
We must work for it. We must try our utmost to have good intentions and not harbour hate and malice. Islam wants us to be part of the beautiful universal family. Let us try our best, so our faith will continue to grow and our personality would become brighter and brighter. So, as we have started back on this program, we try our best and work hard against the baser desires as Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.) told his companions, “I have returned from the lesser jihad, jihad al-aswghar, to the greater jihad, jihad al-akbar.”
The swahabah enquired, “What is the greater jihad?”
Prophet (s.a.w.) said, “Jihad an-nafs,” meaning the struggle against the inner desires.
One mistake can destroy all our life’s work just as a married couple can destroy their loving relationship through one moment of ill treatment. This is why we engage in dzikr and try to culture our spiritual stations to resound “Allah.” If we have Allah (s.w.t.) in our heart, Satan cannot come and whisper to divert our intentions and emotions. We beg Allah (s.w.t.) to Forgive us for our mistakes, Wipe out our evils and Cover up our faults. We keep conscious of our responsibilities and duties, and guard our faith so that when we leave this world, we will have no room for regrets. May Allah (s.w.t.) Forgive us, Bless us, Guide us and Protect us all, insha’Allah.