Friday, April 20, 2012

Friday Nasihah

iving The Quran
Saba (Sheba) - Chapter 34: Verse 46 (partial)
"Say, I exhort you to one thing, that you rise up to God."
Rising up to God is awakening from the slumber of heedlessness and rising from the difficulty of indifference. It is the first thing that enlightens the heart of the servant of God with life.
Awakening consists of three things:
The first is the glance of the heart at the grace and despairing at counting it or knowing its limits, of devoting oneself to knowing its favour, knowing how careless one is with respect to it.
The second is to examine the transgression, realizing the danger it involves, preparing oneself to setting it right, ridding oneself of its noose and asking to be saved by cleansing it.
The third is being alert in recognising the increase and decrease in God's privileges, to avoid wasting them and pay attention not to hold them back, so that what has been missed can be set right and what has remained can flourish.
As to how to recognize the grace, it becomes clear with three things: the light of the mind, the source of the lightning of the favour and absorption of the lesson from those who are afflicted with adversity.
As to the examination of the misdeed, it is validated by three things: glorifying the True One, knowing oneself and, believing in the threat.
As to discerning the increase and decrease in privileges, it goes by three things: listening to Science, complying with the requirement of piety and keeping company with the righteous.
Attaining all of this is by giving up acquired habits.
Compiled From:
"Stations of the Wayfarers" - Abdullah Al-Ansari, pp. 42-44
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Understanding the Prophet's Life (peace be upon him)
Racial Equality
Once Abu Dharr, an Arab from the tribe of Ghifar, became angry with Bilal of Abyssinia, the freed slave of Abu Bakr, may Allah be pleased with them. The dispute intensified until Abu Dharr in his fury said to Bilal, "Son of a black woman!" Bilal complained to the Prophet, peace be upon him, who addressed Abu Dharr saying, "Did you call him a name reviling his mother? It appears that you still have traces of jahiliyyah [ignorance] in you!" Abu Dharr thought that jahiliyyah was a kind of sexual immorality or moral deviation and thus said, "At this old age, O Messenger of Allah?" The Prophet said in reply, "Yes, they are your brothers." Abu Dharr regretted what he had said and repented, and out of extreme repentance and humility requested Bilal to trample his face with his feet. This is the point which marks the line of demarcation between knowledge and ignorance. In other words, racial equality demarcates the real human civilization and the civilization of the jahiliyyah.
The civilization that does not make one race superior over another, or one colour over another is the civilization that the noble and intelligent humans build, and thus conscious noble humanity is pleased. The civilization which gives superiority to whites and degrades the black so that only the whites are happy and the coloured are in misery takes humanity back to the blind and dark ages. "You have traces of jahiliyyah in you" is a description of the jahili civilization which calls for racial discrimination and this is what Islamic Civilizations has fought in all fields of life - in the mosque, in the school, in the court, in the leadership and with friends and foe alike.
Compiled From:
"The Islamic Civilization"- Mustafa Sibai, pp. 66, 67
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Finding Wisdom
We know that information is not wisdom. We also know that knowledge is not wisdom. As your knowledge increases, your ignorance becomes larger, or at least your awareness of your ignorance becomes larger. So the more you know, the more you realize you don't know. What if you were trying to serve purposes greater than your knowledge - greater than your comfort zone? This would create genuine humility and a desire to draw upon help from others - from a partnership or team. Successfully working with others makes one's knowledge and abilities productive and necessitates the creation of a complementary team of people who possess knowledge and abilities that can compensate for and make irrelevant one's individual ignorance and weaknesses. When information and knowledge are impregnated with worthy purposes and principles, you have wisdom.
Another way of putting this would be that wisdom is the child of integrity - being integrated around principles. And integrity is the child of humility and courage. In fact you could say that humility is the mother of all the virtues because humility acknowledges that there are natural laws or principles that govern the universe. They are in charge. We are not. Pride teaches us that we are in charge. Humility teaches us to understand and live by principles, because they ultimately govern the consequences of our actions. If humility is the mother, courage is the father of wisdom. Because to truly live by these principles when they are contrary to social mores, norms and values takes enormous courage.
Compiled From:
"The 8th Habit" - Stephen R. Covey, pp. 295-297

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