Khutbah Friday 24 June 2016:  Reflections on acknowledging the significance Ease and Supplication by Shaykh Sadullah Khan

Khutbah Friday 24 June 2016: Reflections on acknowledging the significance Ease and Supplication by Shaykh Sadullah Khan

IMG_4544شَهْرُ رَمَضَانَ الَّذِيَ أُنزِلَ فِيهِ الْقُرْآنُ هُدًى لِّلنَّاسِ وَبَيِّنَاتٍ مِّنَ الْهُدَى وَالْفُرْقَانِ فَمَن شَهِدَ مِنكُمُ الشَّهْرَ فَلْيَصُمْهُ وَمَن كَانَ مَرِيضًا أَوْ عَلَى سَفَرٍ فَعِدَّةٌ مِّنْ أَيَّامٍ أُخَرَ يُرِيدُ اللّهُ بِكُمُ الْيُسْرَ وَلاَ يُرِيدُ بِكُمُ الْعُسْرَ وَلِتُكْمِلُواْ الْعِدَّةَ وَلِتُكَبِّرُواْ اللّهَ عَلَى مَا هَدَاكُمْ وَلَعَلَّكُمْ تَشْكُرُونَ وَإِذَا سَأَلَكَ عِبَادِي عَنِّي فَإِنِّي قَرِيبٌ أُجِيبُ دَعْوَةَ الدَّاعِ إِذَا دَعَانِ فَلْيَسْتَجِيبُواْ لِي وَلْيُؤْمِنُواْ بِي لَعَلَّهُمْ يَرْشُدُونَ

Ramadhan is the (month) in which was sent down the Qur’an, as a guide to mankind, also clear (Signs) for guidance and judgment (Between right and wrong). So every one of you who is present (at his home) during that month should spend it in fasting, but if anyone is ill, or on a journey, the prescribed period (Should be made up) by days later. Allah intends ease for you; He desires no difficulties upon you. (He wants you) to complete the prescribed period, and to glorify Him in that He has guided you; and perchance you be grateful. When My devotees ask thee concerning Me, I am indeed close (to them): I listen to the prayer of every suppliant when he calleth on Me: Let them also, with a will, Listen to My call, and believe in Me: That they may walk in the right way [Quran 2:185/6]

أتاكم شهر رمضان ، شهر مبارك ، فرض الله عليكم صيامه ، تفتح فيه أبواب الجنة ، و تغلق فيه أبواب الجحيم ، و تغل فيه مرده الشياطين ، و فيه ليلة هي خير من ألف شهر ، من حرم خيرها فقد حرم     ( أحمد و النسائي- وصححه الألباني(

The Prophet (pbuh) is reported to have said, There comes to you the month of Ramadaan, a blessed month, in which Allah has made fasting obligatory…

it contains a night greater than 1000 months. Whoever denies himself/herself the benefit of that month denies himself/herself a tremendous amount of good

We are blessed to witness the most sanctified period of the year …

  • the month of Ramadaan (mentioned by name in the Qur’an in relation to the Qur’an [Q2:185])
  • month of the Qur’an (revelation commenced on Night of Power [Q97:1-2]) an event of the greatest historic, religious and spiritual significance for it ushered in the beginning of the end; the beginning of the end of Revelation; the beginning of end of the mission of Prophets, the ultimate Guidance till the end of time, the beginning of the final onslaught against polytheism, injustice, subjugation and oppression and the beginning of the end of jahiliyyah (all forms of backwardness, ignorance and retrogression).                                          Due to this event of  revelation that this month contains the nigh greater in spiritual value than a thousand months [Q 97:3])
  • the month of fasting [Q2:183 – 185]

Fasting in Islam involves abstinence from three primal physical needs of human beings; food, drink,{sustenance for living} and intimate relationships {survival & perpetuation of species}from dawn to dusk during the entire month of Ramadan.

 

  • month of increased generosity and a greater consciousness of the plight of the poor and the needy.

 

In the verses recited, Allah speaks about the revelation of Quran in Ramadaan, fasting and then mentions among other things

  • To glorify Allah (wa li tukabbirullah) ;
  • ‘alaa maa hadaakum (Divine Guidance)
  • Wa la’allakum tashkurun (gratitude)
  • Ujibu da’watat da’i (Allah responds to prayer)

Two aspects of this verse that I would like to focus on

  1. The deen of Islam is a deen of تيسيروتبشير not تعسير وتعذيب .. is easy to understand & simple to implement;

Our faith is not a complicated conglomeration of confusing commands, it is simple and straightforward; does not presuppose the need for a priestly class to unravel its directives. The Quran, our primary source of guidance contains آيَاتٌ مُّحْكَمَاتٌ هُنَّ أُمُّ الْكِتَابِ “verses of fundamentals of faith, which constitutes the essence of the book” [Q 3:7].

Allah thus reminds us ..

وَمَا جَعَلَ عَلَيْكُمْ فِي الدِّينِ مِنْ حَرَجٍ  [Q 22:78]

religion is not intended to cause difficulty (unnecessary inconvenience)

يُرِيدُ اللّهُ بِكُمُ الْيُسْرَ وَلاَ يُرِيدُ بِكُمُ الْعُسْرَ

Allah wants ease for you; He desires no difficulties upon you. [Q 2:186]

إِنَّ هَذَا الدِّينَ يُسْرٌ  وَلَنْ يُشَادَّ الدِّينَ أَحَدٌ إِلَّا غَلَبَهُ  فَسَدِّدُوا وَقَارِبُوا وَأَبْشِرُوا وَيَسِّرُوا        صحيح البخاري

This way of life is indeed easy (to understand and simple to implement), if anyone is severe/harsh regarding it, it will overwhelm him. So, reach out, seek means of approachability, give glad tidings and make things easy,

The Prophet (pbuh) said;

يسروا ولا تعسروا،  وبشروا ولا تنفروا

Make things easy, not difficult, be positive through conveying glad tiding rather than through harshness that drives people away.”

Islam intends to solve issues, not create problems and difficulties and the Prophet came to facilitate ease, as he (pbuh) personally confirmed regarding his noble mission:

إِنَّمَا بُعِثْتُمْ مُيَسِّرِينَ ، وَلَمْ تُبْعَثُوا مُعَسِّرِينَ (البخاري)

I have been sent to you to make things easy,                                                                               I have not been sent to make things difficult. [Bukhari]

 

  1. Turning to Allah with du’a.

Allah encourages us ….

وَإِذَا سَأَلَكَ عِبَادِي عَنِّي فَإِنِّي قَرِيبٌ أُجِيبُ دَعْوَةَ الدَّاعِ إِذَا دَعَانِ فَلْيَسْتَجِيبُواْ لِي

When My devotees ask thee concerning Me, I am indeed close (to them): I listen to the prayer of every suppliant when he calleth on Me [Q 2:186]

The Prophet intimated that du’a is ‘Ibadah   الدعاء هو العبادة

ليس شيء أكرم على الله تعالى من الدعاء     )الترمذي(

That …. du’a is the most honourable act in the estimation of Allah

ثلاثةٌ لا تُرَدُّ دعوتُهم: الصَّائم حتَّى يُفْطِر، والإمام العادِل، ودعْوة المظْلوم ) أحمد في مسنده(

That ….  du’a of three people are never left unresponded; the fasting person at breaking fast, the just leader, and the plea of the oppressed

قال رسولَ الله صلَّى الله عليْه وسلَّم : “إنَّ للصَّائم عند فِطْرِه دعوةً ما تُرَدُّ)  ابن ماجه(

Regarding Allah responding to prayers the spiritual luminary Ibrāhīm bin Adham was asked about the saying of Allah

وَقَالَ رَبُّكُمُ ادْعُونِي أَسْتَجِبْ لَكُمْ

“And your Lord Says: Call Upon me, I Will Answer your prayer  [Q 40: 60]

ما لنا ندعوا الله ولا يستجاب لنا؟!قال إبراهيم بن أدهم رحمه الله تعالى:

We supplicate and we are not answered.

So Ibrāhīm bin Adham said to them:

“لأنكم عرفتم الله فلم تطيعوه، وعرفتم رسوله فلم تتبعوا سنته،وعرفتم القرآن فلم تعملوا به، وأكلتم نِعمَ الله فلم تؤدوا شكرها،وعرفتم الجنة فلم تطلبوها ، وعرفتم النار فلم تهربوا منها، وعرفتم الشيطان فلم تحاربوه ووافقتموه ، وعرفتم الموت فلم تستعدوا له،                     ودفنتم الأموات فلم تعتبروا ،وتركتم عيوبكم واشتغلتم بعيوب الناس”.

  • You know the glory of Allah, Yet you do not obey Him,
  • You proclaim adherence to the Messenger of Allah yet you abandon his example
  • You recite the Qur’aan, Yet do not act according to it,
  • You enjoy the bounties Allah has provided for you, Yet you do not thank Him
  • You desire Paradise, Yet you do not act to attain it,
  • You proclaim your fear for Fire, Yet you persist in sins that lead to it
  • You know evil, Yet you don’t dissociate from it,
  • You acknowledge death as reality Yet you never prepare for it
  • You bury your dead, Yet you do not take a lesson from it.
  • You are busy finding faults with others, Yet you do not look at your own faults,

Imam ‘Ali said that whosoever wishes to have a positive impact on the world فليبدأ بتعليم نفسه قبل تعليم غيره should begin with correcting the self before attempting to rectify the world.

 

 

 

أتاكم شهر رمضان ، شهر مبارك ، فرض الله عليكم صيامه ، تفتح فيه أبواب الجنة ، و تغلق فيه أبواب الجحيم ، و تغل فيه مرده الشياطين ، و فيه ليلة هي خير من ألف شهر ، من حرم خيرها فقد حرم     ( أحمد و النسائي- وصححه الألباني(

The Prophet (pbuh) is reported to have said, There comes to you the month of Ramadaan, a blessed month, in which Allah has made fasting obligatory…

it contains a night greater than 1000 months. Whoever denies himself/herself the benefit of that month denies himself/herself a tremendous amount of good

 

We are spiritual wayfarers/ as-sā’ihūn on the transcendent journey towards the attainment of piety. Where is this journey currently taking us? Are we becoming better human beings; more considerate, more caring, more compassionate?  Are we journeying from self-centredness to social consciousness, from self-righteousness to righteousness? Where did we start and how far have we journeyed; if at all.

We are in the latter part of this special month of Ramadān, the month of the Qur’ān, the month of siyām/fasting, the month of qiyām/night prayers; shahrum mubārak, a sacred/blessed month indeed. Ramadan is indeed the month of a heightened level of God-consciousness, month of spiritual elevation, month of moral rejuvenation.

 

We need to perpetuate the positive spirit we are imbibing in Ramadaan and continue on the spiritual journey towards fulfilment and excellence,  towards being the best we can be,             towards taqwa/righteousness; which the Quran considers the pinnacle of human development.                                     Let us be ever cognizant of the fact that next Ramadān may or may not come; even if it does, some of us may or may not be around.

 

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