Our problem today is that some of us have the appearance of Sunnah without its soul, some have the words of that Aqeeda without its Noor and some have nothing.
Meaning doesn’t mean translation. It means understanding which results in effects on the self. If someone translates Sher as Tiger, he’s correct but it is only when he faces a real tiger in the jungle and has lost control of his bowels that he can claim to understand the meaning of the word Sher.
Islam today is only words. Dry words that create no effect. Words that bring no tears to the eyes, that don’t change your blood pressure or heartbeat. Words that don’t touch your emotions. Words that don’t wake you or sooth you with tranquility. Words that don’t comfort your fear, dry your tears of grief or give you new hope to get up after a fall and face the world which is still the same.
Incidentally in our lives, a pretty woman, a handsome man, a poem, a song, a musical tune, a bottle of whisky or a choice curse word can do all of the above. Yet Islam, the word of Allah, the teaching of His Messenger(S) leave us untouched.
Then we wonder why we’re today the dregs of humanity.
Khizr kyon kar bataye, kya bataye
Agar mahi kahay darya kahan?
The big question to myself is how much longer do I want to continue to live like this… The existence of the living dead?
When will I wake up and respond to my Rabb and rejoice in His company? When will His slightest wish be my command? When will I yearn to meet Him and work to make that day the best day of my life? When will I dedicate my life as He commanded me to dedicate it when He said;
قُلْ إِنَّ صَلاَتِي وَنُسُكِي وَمَحْيَايَ وَمَمَاتِي لِلّهِ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ
Anaam 6:162 Say: “Truly, my prayer and my service of sacrifice, my life and my death, are (all) for Allah, the Rabb of the Worlds.”
I end with asking the question that He asked:
أَلَمْ يَأْنِ لِلَّذِينَ آمَنُوا أَن تَخْشَعَ قُلُوبُهُمْ لِذِكْرِ اللَّهِ وَمَا نَزَلَ مِنَ الْحَقِّ وَلَا يَكُونُوا كَالَّذِينَ أُوتُوا الْكِتَابَ مِن قَبْلُ فَطَالَ عَلَيْهِمُ الْأَمَدُ فَقَسَتْ قُلُوبُهُمْ وَكَثِيرٌ مِّنْهُمْ فَاسِقُونَ
Hadeed 57:16. IS IT NOT time that the hearts of all who have believed should feel humble at the remembrance of Allah and of all the truth that has been bestowed [on them] from on high, lest they become like those who were granted revelation aforetime, and whose hearts have hardened with the passing of time so that many of them are [now] depraved?
My brothers and sisters, if not now, then when?
If not we, then who?
Don’t underestimate the importance of words. In the famous words of Mark Twain: ‘The difference between the right word and the almost right word is the difference between lightning and a lightning bug.’ Words touch the heart, move the soul and inspire the spirit. Words move people to do things they considered impossible. Words are timeless and continue to have meaning in contexts very different from that in which they were first uttered. Words outlast the speaker and are handed down from generation to generation. Even to this day, the words of John F. Kennedy echo down through the decades when he said, ‘Ask not what your country can do for you. Ask what you can do for your country’. Or the words of Aristotle which echo down through the ages and have so much meaning today in our current context where he said, ‘It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.’ And the words of the Prophet Muhammad (Peace be on him) which underscore the essence of brotherhood, good character and citizenship, where he said, ‘He is not one of mine who lies, breaks a promise or fails in his trust.’ Imagine a society based on truth and trustworthiness and how much we need to create such a society today. Words are the only means we have of transferring our thoughts and feelings into the hearts and minds of others. Words are remembered long after the speaker is forgotten. Words wound and heal. Words cause tears and laughter. Words are the stuff of dreams. Words are us. So don’t underestimate the power of words, delivered perfectly – only if they are delivered perfectly.
(Extract from my new book: Present Your Way to the Top)