Followers of Allah's Prophet (S)- Are we?! Part 2

Developing Just Leadership

Muhammad H. al-'Asi

Rajab 22, 1432 2011-06-24

Bismillah Ar-Rahmaan Ar-Raheem. Alhumdulillah. Peace and blessings on Muhammad (sallalahu alaihi wa alihi wa sallam), his Noble Companions and Family. Dear Committed brothers, dear committed sisters,

The people who think (with a) mind that is coached by Allah and His Prophet takes a hard look at this world; the mind that Allah honoured us with extended itself beyond the immediate conditions that we find ourselves in. One of the observations of this divinely disciplined mind- there wouldn’t have been any responsibility, fara’id, nawaafil, ta’aat- nothing if it wasn’t for this mind- is the inability of today’s Muslims to recapture in theory and in practise the behaviour that stands out as the objective/model of every Muslim. Every Muslim concedes “Allah’s Prophet is my best of examples and supreme behaviour.” Allah’s Prophet is this/that is a very positive/favourable expression but when it comes to real life we only find that these Muslims who have very much words of praise for the Prophet we find them only imitating Allah’s Prophet in his rituals. They fail, and we’re part of them therefore we fail to live the major character of Allah’s Prophet. Where is his intention, his struggle, his sacrifices, his opposition to tyranny, his rejection of injustice in today’s character of Muslims? Where is it? The history of Prophethood is a history of opposition. This simple fact cannot penetrate today’s Muslim figures. We have leaders- local, regional and beyond that. There are people who present themselves as leaders and still they cannot understand, much less implement, the fact that if you are Islamic, Qur’anic and Prophetic you are in opposition to the status quo and the established order to the concentration of power that is around. Why can’t we appear like that? There is something that non- Muslims have understood. It’s a shame that we have Allah’s word that He has given us…

قَدْ جَاءَكُم مِّنَ اللَّهِ نُورٌ

… indeed light and enlightment has come to you from Allah… (Surah Al Maa’idah verse 15)

And we behave as if we have none of this light! Just two examples of non- Muslims who understood what it means to be in an opposition- these are not Muslims. They just looked around and said “this world is unjust” and they wanted to do something about it. There are many people like this but we are going to bring these two examples because they impact a large population of people. The first example is Gandhi. I’m not the one who is apt to speak about a person like Mahatma Gandhi. He had common sense/a mind that thought. He looked around- this person was a lawyer back in South Africa a hundred years ago or so - and he saw apartheid. This is injustice/a Government that discriminates against people because of their race. All sorts of abuse/prejudice/the demeaning of human life was all around in society just like you see it today, so this person said “well- we need to do something about this.” So he began with the knowledge/information that he had. He had no Islam/Nur from Allah. He had his common sense- something that even many Muslims lack. So he purchased a ticket to ride in a train, first class. He was able to purchase a ticket; he went and he sat down in first class and then he was expelled. “What you think you are doing?! You can’t do this?! Don’t you know the laws of this land?!” But inside of him he was convinced he was doing the right thing just like every Muslim should be convinced that he should do the right thing. So they threw him off the train- no exaggeration. This was a light weight/easy to shove around person/no mass to him. They threw him out but did he give up? No he didn’t give up. He did it again-and-again-and-again. He kept on doing it and they kept on throwing him out. This is a man who didn’t say Ash Hadu an laa ilaha illalah wa ash hadu anna Muhammadan Rasulullah. He doesn’t pray etc. but he had enough common sense in him that he wasn’t going to accept the injustice/oppression/misbehaviour/offense that is coming his way from the established quarter around. He took this in his life. He took it forward and he developed what became known as “civil disobedience.” He took the idea to India and he wanted people to oppose British Colonialist in India. He began doing it.

Another person who did almost the same thing here in the United States, (once again we’re not anxious to build a case for these types of individuals even though we have to recognise the merits in them that we don’t have when we are supposed to have), was Martin Luther King. He appeared here in the United States and he began almost the same type of approach to the established order and all of a sudden his message began to flourish/extend itself until you have what is called “The civil rights Movement” in this country. Now, Muslims are not born revolutionaries. No one is born into a revolutionary state of mind because (in) the nature of things- if every thing was left up to itself- there wouldn’t be acts of aggression by one against the other. It is the intruding human behaviour of one aggressing against the other that begins to build the momentum of revolution in people. Aggression fills the world! Anywhere you look around, people are picking on others! They slap you down legally; they kick you mentally; they stomp on you ideologically; they physically kill you militarily so this engenders/stimulates a revolutionary response. Before we part with these two individuals- and as we said, there are many other individuals who identified something wrong/not right with this society “and if this society’s vice is coming my way I’m going to deal with it. I’m not going to run away/hide/be a munafiq/make excuses for it” and all these other shenanigans that are going on. No! “I’m going to deal with it.” Unfortunately some Muslims are taking vacation time! They don’t want to deal with it- but what is notable about these two individuals who were literally preaching what is called “civil disobedience” is that they, themselves, were killed. As Muslims we should understand better. In the first instance, we are by nature peaceful people. Forget (what the media is saying; we’re not reacting to what the media is saying/making excuses/apologetic/inferior; we say it with confidence and because it is the truth- by nature, Muslims are peaceful. Allah says

وَلَا تَسْتَوِي الْحَسَنَةُ وَلَا السَّيِّئَةُ ۚ ادْفَعْ بِالَّتِي هِيَ أَحْسَنُ

If there’s an instance where someone harms or offends you counter that with a better behaviour… (Surah Al Fussilaat verse 34)

An instance, not as a systematic violation of who you are. No!

فَإِذَا الَّذِي بَيْنَكَ وَبَيْنَهُ عَدَاوَةٌ كَأَنَّهُ وَلِيٌّ حَمِيمٌ

… then what will happen is the person who held hostility against you turns into a bosom friend. (Surah Al Fussilaat verse 34)

That’s in our character. Allah teaches us when the first expression of animosity was spoken by man/the son of Adam/one brother to the other

قَالَ لَأَقْتُلَنَّكَ

… and he said to his own brother I am going to kill you… (Surah Al Maa’idah verse 27)

How did his brother respond? “Oh- I’m going to kill you”?! This wasn’t a system at work. This was an individual and another individual.

لَئِن بَسَطتَ إِلَيَّ يَدَكَ لِتَقْتُلَنِي مَا أَنَا بِبَاسِطٍ يَدِيَ إِلَيْكَ لِأَقْتُلَكَ ۖ إِنِّي أَخَافُ اللَّهَ رَبَّ الْعَالَمِينَ

If you extend your hand towards me to kill me, I am not going to extend my hand towards you to kill you for I fear Allah the sustainer of the Worlds. (Surah Al Maa’idah verse 28)

In our nature we are predisposed towards serenity/co-existence. We don’t initiate hostilities/war. But what happens if there are systems/Establishments/Governments/militaries that initiate hostilities towards us? Then we have another issue. Let’s not confuse these issues when we are dealing with another set of intentions, policies and bloodshed. So how do we deal with this fact of life? How do we respond? When the expressed hostilities are translated into policies that want to victimise/victimise populations/societies Allah says to us

وَتَخْشَى النَّاسَ وَاللَّهُ أَحَقُّ أَن تَخْشَاهُ

… do you stand in awe of them or are you trembling in fear because of them… (Surah Al Ahzaab verse 37)

Them here is in reference to these Establishments/Institutions/Governments/Regimes/militaries.

وَتَخْشَى النَّاسَ وَاللَّهُ أَحَقُّ أَن تَخْشَاهُ

… you stand in awe of them, whereas it is Allah whom you should stand in awe of… (Surah Al Ahzaab verse 37)

We’re paraphrasing/translating- Allah is saying “Do you mean to tell me you are scared of them but you are not scared of Me”?! There are some weak minded/hearted Muslims who begin to present Jihad as if it was a watered down obligation. “There’s a Jihad that is fard kifayah” they tell us “and there is a jihad that is fard ayn” and they go on-and-on. You have the opportunity of tuning in because they’re all around the place- we don’t want to repeat them. A more germane way of putting it is al jihad is fard ayn/obligatory upon everyone. There are different types of jihad but it is obligatory upon everyone. There’s a jihad via your nafs; there’s a jihad via your tongue; there’s a jihad via your wealth/possessions and there’s a jihad via your life. This makes more sense. Jihad is either a psychological one- the only struggle you have is in your self. You see something wrong (and) you have to measure, (you have to use your mind), the circumstances/ potentials/negatives/positives. You take everything into consideration and after you do that you find out (that) the only way I’m going to be able to oppose this is in myself. I don’t reconcile myself to it; I don’t agree with it; I’m opposed to it but the best I can do is keep that to myself. Another level of jihad is (that) you go from there to expressing it. You express/say it. We have people who have freedoms but they can’t say the truth. Or you have a jihad bi al maal/through you wealth. OK- you have some money/resources; well, you spend of that for the course of Allah. And then, obviously, the highest level of jihad is the ultimate sacrifice- you give your life. We have people today who have their tongues tied! They can’t express this truth. What’s wrong with you?

We take a look at the Prophet of Allah- many Muslims do this. You’ll find (it) in today’s world. Listen to what they say, that say “the Prophet was in a dormant expression of Islam in Makkah.” They call it “al marhala as sirriyyah/the underground activity of Islam in Makkah. Then you have the Prophet in Al Madinah where there was a Governmental/Established order Islamic struggle in Al Madinah.” OK/fine- if that’s the way you want to look at it- proceed. If you look at the timetable/the Prophet’s presence in Makkah there were about three years in which there was total silence. The Prophet wasn’t going to the public and saying what Islam was. They were meeting in silence/underground in the full sense of the word. But then, there were ten years after that in which the Prophet went public and those who were with him, (more than thirty/forty individuals), who went public. They weren’t afraid to say the truth. The observation here is there was no partial secrecy/publicity. There was no partiality on either side. In those first three years or so when the Prophet was building the core of Muslims, it was totally away from the public eye. No one outside knew anything about these twenty/thirty up-to forty individuals who were consolidating Islam among themselves; meeting in Dar Al Arqam ibn Abi Arqam. (They were) away from the elites, the powers, the decision makers and the average non- Muslim around. No one knew anything about them during this time period, but when they went public after this, they didn’t partially go public. “Let’s say this and don’t say that.” It was a full throttle presentation of Islam with every ayah/word/meaning from Allah and His Prophet to everyone around. In today’s world we have Islamic activities that fudge this issue. They don’t want to take a closer look. OK, (like we said at the beginning of the Khutbah), if your example/model/highest ambition is to repeat the behaviour of Allah’s Prophet; well this is his behaviour! Why don’t you do it? Some of you can’t even express the truth! You don’t know where you are? Where are you? Are you in total clandestine action/ above surface in the public eye? Where are you? Allah is giving you only some years in life, you’re not going to live for eternity. You’re not going to live a couple thousand years! You’re going to live sixty/ seventy years, (if you’re lucky), a hundred years, so what are you doing spending all of this time and you don’t know where you are on the scale of efforts! Are you progressing? Are you consolidated with others? Where are you? No one, especially from these people who have these Islamic OrgaNisa’tions/Associations/ budgets and they have 30,000 people coming to their Seminars/Conferences etc. etc. Where are you in all of this? Oh- how convenient for you to say “the Prophet sallalahu alayhi wa sallam/alayhi as salaatu wa as salaam/sallalahu alayhi wa aalihi wa sallam/may Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him. The Prophet! The Prophet! The Prophet!” And all of these nice/fine/beautiful words but where’s your behaviour?! Have you acquired a Prophet in your character?!

Now we come down to another observation and that is any movement in the world, whether you consider it a movement of virtue/vice, (and one of these), had to have had an important personality launching it. No movement in history- social/political/military, none of them- except that they can be traced to a superb person of one nature or the other. This is like a social law. If you’re looking at political ideas/philosophical trends/economic philosophies- whatever, each one/all came from an individual. Some of them turned out to be fantastic like the Prophets of Allah and some of them turned out to be Satanic like Fascism/Zionism. These are attributed to one individual. This same social law can be said about Islam what we are involved in can be traced all the way back to Allah’s Prophet. This is the important, the most important personality, to which we can trace this Islam. Allah could have revealed the Qur’an as a miracle (i.e.) just a book that came down; an open book for people to understand. That wasn’t the case. The Qur’an was revealed to one person. It could have been a committee. Allah could have chosen a committee of people to reveal the Qur’an to, (but) he revealed it to one person. When you take a look at this person, this person in the eyes of the world/status was virtually nothing. When he was born he had no father. When he was still a very young child he lost his mother. He was cared for by his uncle. He was not rich/of affluence but the circumstances that he had to go through as an orphan/powerless person/individual in society who did not occupy any status /station of prestige made of him the type of personality that could bring in the other personalities who were going to move this Islam forward. The Prophet was a social person but at the same time he also had his hours/days of withdrawing from society. Some of today’s Muslims think about the Prophet going to Hira’ and away from/to isolate himself from society. No! Whether he was a merchant/shepherd, (and he was both), he was involved in the activities of society and as he was involved he used to take a break. He wasn’t a person who was sick/tired of this society, he was part of it and when he began this effort, (and this is another area that the Established Order don’t want you to think about), most of the people who responded to Allah’s Prophet were young. The majority of the followers of Allah’s Prophet were in their teens/ twenties and some of them were in their thirties. (There were) very very few that were older than him. This doesn’t come across very vividly to the average Muslims because its going to make you/me think. OK- if Allah’s Prophet has set the direction/pace for this thing to work then let us take a close look at what happened. What happened, (when we take a close look), we find that those people who were attracted to him were the younger generation. That’s because when Islam speaks- when these words of Allah/the Prophet come in contact with a person it appeals to their higher character and because youth have the vitality/motivation they become committed to Allah and His Prophet. Now, some of the ages we wanted to bring to you because, (as we said, your brother here goes through these books and its not very easy to come across/pin-point) we’ve been asked “so how old was this/that person”? OK- let us try to put this down for you because some of the individuals who were around the Prophet (i.e.) the core upon which the latter years of the Prophet’s life had to fall back on in times of pressure/threats which held the weight of Islam when some people were running away. OK- out of the first ten to become Muslims and follow Allah’s Prophet, three/four of them were teenagers/under twenty years of age. Ali (radi Allahu anhu) became a follower of Allah’s Prophet when he was less than ten years old. Now, here you go into historians (where) some of them go down to seven and others to nine/ten- whatever the case. Az Zubair ibn Al Awwaam (radi Allahu anhu) became a follower of Allah’s Prophet when he was only fifteen years old. Saad ibn Abi Waqqaas (radi Allahu anhu) became a follower of Allah’s Prophet when he was seventeen years old. Suhaib Ar Rumi (radi Allahu anhu) became a follower of Allah’s Prophet when he was in his twenties. This happened after the first ten. Ammaar ibn Yaasir (radi Allahu anhu) also was in his twenties. Musab ibn Umair (radi Allahu anhu) also was in his twenties. Bilal ibn Rabah (radi Allahu anhu) was in his thirties. Umar ibn Al Khattab (radi Allahu anhu) was almost thirty years old. Then, when the Prophet and the Muhajirun went to Al Madinah the following individuals became Muslims when they were young: Saad ibn Zirarah/Abu Umamah and Jaabir ibn Abdillah (radi Allahu anhuma)- they were in their twenties. In Bai’ah Al Aqabah, about half of those who gave their bai’ahs were in their twenties/thirties, among them Abdullah ibn Rawaha, the person who became one of the three commanders in that uneven Battle of Mu’tah in the first encounter between the Muslims and the Byzantines. Ubadah ibn As Saamit (radi Allahu anhu) was thirty-six years old. Saad ibn Ubadah (radi Allahu anhu), (one of the two Saads of Al Madinah), was thirty-one years old and he died as a consequence of the wounds that he sustained in the war with the Mushriks that he sustained six years later when he was thirty-six years old. Aaamir ibn Fuhairah (radi Allahu anhu) and the list goes on… The point is- brothers and sisters- this Islam that we are affiliated/identify with that we say “we carry in our lives” appeals to that generation that is impressed by people who can say the truth/stand for justice/present themselves against all the challenges that come their way. This is what is required but take a look at today’s type of Islamic Movements/Congregations… Do they take this seriously? This is part of our common history. They come and say “don’t radicalise the younger generation.” These are the words now that are bouncing back-and-forth in our discussions/interaction. They say “don’t radicalise the younger generation.” We wonder if they would have said that to Allah’s Prophet? Was he “radicalising the younger generation”? Or was the Mushriks in Makkah/Al Madinah saying that “the Prophet was radicalising the younger generation”? Now we have a cross-breed of statements between the Muslims of today and the Mushriks of fourteen centuries ago. “Don’t radicalise the younger generation.” Be cautious- brothers and sisters. You may be praising Allah’s Prophet with your mouths but you may be condemning him with your actions.

Brothers and sisters on our way to Allah…

The word of truth is a hard word to say in today’s world. It has been assaulted by psychological disorders/ incarcerated by military establishments/distorted by the mainstream media and as far as Muslims who should know better- they are silent when it comes to the word of truth. This is the world we live in. Some of these issues that serve as an explanation for this silence have to do with sectarian/Nationalist origins. You (can) take two places in the Muslim world today out of the many other places- Bahrain- a small island whose people want self-determination. Every Muslim in the world, (regardless of his fiqh/how he performs his salaah), with a full heart/confident mind say “the people of Bahrain should have their self determination because they don’t have a representative government.” Anyone, (imagine if it’s not a Muslim, some non- Muslim just looking at what’s happening in that island kingdom), says “of course Muslims should have their self representation/self determination.” What’s wrong with us? We acquire some Islam and we no longer can see the truth?! So you see many Muslims right now who want to play up their Sunni character at this time say “no.” Why no?! What’s wrong with you? This definition of being a Sunni has jeopardised your common sense/paralysed your mind?! We don’t know the exact percentage, some people say “sixty-five percent” other people say “eighty-five percent of the inhabitants of Bahrain are Shi’i.” So what? Does that mean that they should be ruled by a King that has given a base to the Imperialists who are killing us everywhere? What’s wrong with you?

مَا لَكُمْ كَيْفَ تَحْكُمُونَ

But how is it that you judge?! (Surah As Saff’faat verse 154)

Where is it in Sunni Islam, (let’s call it that), that there is a justification for a King to rule anywhere in Arabia? Bring us the hadith/ayah. (There’s) no such thing. But this is what sectarianism has done.

Another issue- go to Syria. The people there don’t have a representative Government. What’s wrong with other Muslims who say “they are Shi’is.” They can’t see this?! The Government there. Just a couple of years ago made it official that “hey are going to ban the Islamic dress code from their schools.” If you’re a Muslimah and you want to come as a teacher to the University of Damascus or such-and-such high school- “who told you, you can where the hijab? Take that hijab off!” That’s the type of Government that you have there. This is an insult to the character of the Muslim people in Syria. What’s wrong with you- you can’t say this? Only over a year ago the same Government wanted to put together a conference that brings all the secular Arabs from all the countries to make a case for secularism against Islamic self determination in Damascus. What’s wrong? You can’t see that? Of course, to some people it’s not this clear, but to the Syrian people, (because the Syrian Government is not governing over Lebanese/Jordanians/Iranians/ Egyptians, it’s governing over Syrian people), and the Syrian people see that this is not a representative Government. Even the highest officials in that Government say “we want to make this a representative Government.” After what? After the people leave the Masajid in demonstrations and get shot at? Tens of thousands of them are now refugees in surrounding countries; over a-thousand of them have been killed directly after Jum’ah prayers. What’s wrong? What has happened to the Muslim mind? We can’t speak the truth in Bahrain/Syria. There’s nothing wrong (with) looking at our selves factually/objectively without prejudice/bias, but this is where we are. Brothers and sisters- this is a fact of life. Some people are caught up in their sectarian affiliations. Does Allah/His Prophet come first or “wait a minute- there’s some interest here that I must factor in.” This Government in what is called Saudi Arabia beheads an Indonesian servant. This also comes out in the past week because of this incident. There’s about 1,2million Indonesians working in Saudi Arabia. You know the types of jobs they are doing- these/most of them are servants in homes in the upper/middle/lesser classes of Arabia. So this poor lady wanted to go home to Indonesia. Her masters told her “you cannot do it. We will not permit you to go home.” She took it for a month/year (and) she could take it no longer. She attacked her female master and killed her. As a consequence of that she was taken to court and then last week or so she was beheaded publicly in Saudi Arabia. This was going to cause a diplomatic row between Riyadh and Jakarta. Finally, after the diplomats in Arabia came to their senses, they apologised. An apology is not going to do it. We all are going to have to see through their nature/ character (and) evaluate them as Allah and His Prophet evaluated them. Once Makkah/Al Madinah return to us and we liberate them from these types of Royals/Monarchs/Authoritarians, that is the day when all Muslims shall rejoice.

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