Beyond Ramadan

Posted by : | On : 27-09-2008 | Comments 2
Beyond Ramadan

In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

FOREWORD

The following text is transcribed from the khutbah delivered by Shaykh Abdullah Hakim Quick on Eid-ul-Fitr at Masjid-ul-Quds in Gatesville (Cape Town), South Africa. Nearly five thousand people were in attendance. The impact of this speech was so powerful that an initiative was made to produce audio copies and to make the message available in print. Muslims today, are in need of clear self-analysis and practical steps toward reconstruction. This humble presentation represents one voice among the thousands that are crying for self-analysis, internal change, unity and a realistic approach to current problems.

MUSLIM JUDICIAL COUNCIL, DEPARTMENT OF DA’WAH, CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA

All praises to Allah, the Self Sufficient, the Praised, the Beginner, the Restorer, the Lord of the Glorious Throne; He who does what He Intends, who has encompassed everything within His Knowledge, and who is Witness to all affairs. I praise and thank Him, the Glorious, and I ask Him to increase us in His favour and I bear witness that He is One and has no partners, or rivals, or helpers and I bear witness that Muhammad(saw) is His servant and last Messenger and the best of those who called the people to faith and Tawheed. May Allah constantly and always send peace and blessings to Muhammad, and to his family, companions and all those who call to his way and establish his Sunnah until the Day of Judgement.

As to what follows, Oh you who believe:
This is one of the blessed days of Allah, in which He has gathered you together in a state of purity and faith, after completing your fasting in Ramadan. You have put your trust in Allah and left your desires in order to fulfill His commandments and He, the Almighty has promised you great reward for your sacrifice.
Glad tidings to those who have fasted and have come together today.
The Prophet(saw) informed us that “…the fasting person has “two joys”: one when he breaks his fast and one when he meets his Lord… (Bukhari and Muslim)
He(saw) also told us:

“Whoever fasted in Ramadan with faith and expectation of Allah’s reward would have his previous sins forgiven”.
( Bukhari and Muslim)

Allah, the Almighty, has prepared a special gate in Paradise called Ar-Rayyaan, for those who have fasted. They will enter through this gate, on the Day of Judgement, and then drink (from the nectar of the Paradise). Thereupon, they will never feel thirsty again. In addition, Allah has prepared countless other blessings for those who have fasted. Many of these blessings could never be imagined by earthly minds
Allah, the Most High, has informed us in a Hadeeth Qudsi :

“All the deeds of the son of Adam are for himself, except fasting it is especially for me and I will reward especially for it…”
( Bukhari and Muslim)

So, regardless of the sins you may have committed in the past, turn to Allah in repentance, for this is a perfect opportunity to start afresh. Some of us were not born in Muslim homes. We were totally off the Straight Path, involved in drugs, gambling, adultery, and crime. Allah, the Most High, Guided us and Blessed us with the light of the last Message. Others amongst us were born in Muslim families but never really understood Islam. Our lives were empty, filled with meaningless rituals and polytheistic practices done in the name of Islam. Let us all take this opportunity to commit ourselves to “living Islam”, the way of the Last Messenger, Muhammad(saw) !


Now that the month of Ramadan is over:

• Don’t abandon prayer. Continue to pray in the Masjid.
• Continue giving sadaqah as you did whilst you were fasting.
• And a special message to sisters: Do not throw away your beautiful, loose Islamic dress, now that Ramadan is over.

“Allah hears and sees all things”

Oh you who believe:
The Muslim is `Abdullah (the slave of Allah) whose Lord is the Creator of the heavens and the earth. His Lord is Ever Living and will never die. `Abdullah recognises this, and so, when Ramadan ends, he continues striving for righteousness. His steady prayer in the masjid continues, his tongue remains clean and his gaze remains lowered. He continues to worry about his Zakah and his other sacrifices in the Path of Allah.
Modesty is a part of him, and it does not change or lessen with the sighting of the Hilal.
`Abdu-Ramadan (the slave of the month of Ramadan) is another character. He becomes “holy” for the duration of the fasting month and changes for the worse as soon as the month of Shawwal is announced. The end of Ramadan closes the door to goodness, instead of opening up the blessings of the fast to the rest of the year.
`Abdu-Ramadan will not meet his Lord for another year. Suddenly, he cannot be found in the masjid. He uses foul language, stares at that which is forbidden to him and does not appear as a Muslim in public.
His cousin, Abdu-Lailatil-Qadr (the slave of the Night of Power) is even worse! His whole religion revolves around the twenty-seventh night of Ramadan wherein he stands in prayer and makes ample dua which he is sure will suffice for the whole year ahead.


Let us strive to change these weak trends within our people.

• Let Ramadan be the training ground for a year of struggle and success.
• Plan Hajj early and make intentions to travel to the three Holy Harams.
• Plan to give part of your wealth to the masjid or to support da’wah efforts in your region.
• Give a portion of your time and wealth to liberate Masjid-Al-Aqsa and assist oppressed Muslims wherever they are.
• Fast six days in Shawwal as prescribed by our Prophet(saw) .
• Make special efforts to continue praying in the masjid and attending Jumu’ah prayers.
• Guard your eyes, ears, hands, feet and tongue from that which is forbidden by Allah and His Messenger .

Oh you who believe:
Eid is a time of divine unity. This year the whole world is celebrating Eid-ul-Fitr together! Despite the differences in calculating the arrival of a new month, despite the differences in Madhaahib, Almighty Allah is bringing us together whether we agree or not – over 1.5 billion Muslims, a quarter of humanity striving for the same goal! In all continents, all races, all colours – fasting, praying, giving charity and standing up against evil.

Allah tells us: “Truly this nation of yours is one nation and I am your Lord, therefore worship me.” (Qur’an: 21:92)

Here in Cape Town, last night over two thousand Muslims converged on the “Sea point” to sight the new crescent of Shawwal. Non-Muslims who witnessed the huge turnout were amazed at this gathering. With no warning and seemingly out of nowhere, crowds of Muslims filled the seashore. Men, women, and children- all there for the same peaceful purpose. There was no fighting, alcohol, illegal drug taking, or rude behaviour – just positive vibrations, excitement and prayer. We Muslims can become a powerful force in this city and country, if we unite and really begin to work together.

0h you who believe:
Eid is a time for victory and joy. Despite the material and spiritual opposition, we have defeated our desires and resisted the temptations of this life. We feel joy upon seeing our friends and fellow Muslims. Allah has blessed us with a relative state of peace and security. We are dressed in good clothing, living in clean, warm homes and able to drive to the masjid peacefully. But is our victory complete when we are only materially secure? Is our victory complete when Muslims throughout the world are surrounded by the enemies of Allah?
“We should look upon ourselves as part of a new Islamic world order (A movement for a better, safer world)”, wherein:

• We are tired of being led by our desires, programmed to live a life in opposition to divine revelation.
• We are tired of submitting to the whims and fancies of evil-minded people.
• We want to be governed by the laws of Allah, the Creator, not the hypocritical rhetorics of men.
• We want to live in peace and harmony with nature and our fellow man in a society, which is free of gambling, drugs, immorality, hatred and violence.
• We want to live in a world where people are not judged on the basis of class or the colour of their skin.

This Islamic New World order will not come about without a struggle.
All the Prophets went into the jaws of death, believing in Allah. They depended on their Lord, persevered, then came the victory.
• The Prophet Nuh (as) believed in Allah and built his Ark. Allah sent the flood and then saved him.
• The Prophet Ibrahim (as) believed in Allah, refused to worship idols and was thrown into a fire. Allah saved him and gave him a way to migrate.
• The Prophet Musa (as) believed in Allah, confronted the Pharaoh and was chased to the sea. He raised his staff in total submission to his Lord, then Allah saved him and destroyed his enemies.
• The Prophet `Isa (as) believed in Allah, confronted his people, then faced near death at the hands of the Romans. Allah saved him by raising him up to the Heavens.
• The Prophet Muhammad(saw) believed in Allah and then stood facing the whole of Quraysh, then the whole of Arabia and then the might of Roman Empire. Allah saved him and established him in power and security before his death.

If we believe in Allah, hold fast to His rope, as a united body, Allah can save us from the plots and plans of the most powerful nations of today! So let us remember our brothers and sisters who are suffering right now as we sit in this Masjid. The struggle in Chechnya continues. The people are freezing in the snow but the Mujahideen are intensifying their attacks on the Russian occupiers.

The tragedy of Bosnia and Kosova is not over. The major struggle for survival has just begun. Despite the cease-fire and a relative state of peace, the whole infrastructure has to be rebuilt. Major projects need to be initiated and financed by the Muslim world.

Masjid-Al-Aqsa is still under attack and plans are being carried out to destroy the Islamic sites and rebuild the temple of Solomon. Children in Palestine are still being maimed and killed. The country has become a huge prison camp with no immediate hope of relief. So our joy should be mixed with seriousness and dedication towards doing something to relieve this suffering.

Let us also never forget that we are going through trials and tribulations right here in South Africa.
So although Ramadan has ended, our second and greatest test has begun.

The Prophet Muhammad(saw) once said,
“Verily, I fear for you the splendor and beauty of the world that will be opened up to you after me.” (Bukhari and Muslim)

Some of these trials have been specifically constructed to target the Muslim community and the under-privileged:
• Huge casinos with shopping malls, restaurants and skating rinks have been constructed.
• Nightclubs shaped like Masjids and serving alcohol have appeared.
• Haraam food with beautiful packaging and enticing smells fill the supermarkets.
• Killer drugs with beautiful names and false descriptions permeate our society.
• Immortality and deviation with a smile have become the norm of our world.

The Eid this year, falls in the festive season of the solar calendar. All the valid historical accounts in the writings of the Jews, Christians and Muslims show that the Prophet Jesus (‘Isa ibn Maryam) (ﻢﻼﺴﻠﺍ ﻪﻳﻠﻋ) was born in summer.

In Surah Maryam (16-36), Allah reveals to us that Maryam (ﻢﻼﺴﻠﺍ ﺎﻬﻳﻠﻋ) was suffering from the pangs of childbirth and was guided to a place where running water flowed beneath her. She was told to shake the date palm tree so that ripe dates would pour down. The Arabs understood that, in terms of their environment ripe dates could only appear in the intense heat. Hence, Prophet ‘Isa (ﻢﻼﺴﻠﺍ ﻪﻳﻠﻋ) was probably born in July or August.
Why then do the Christians celebrate December 25th as the birthday of Christ, the Son of God, when this time of the year marks the “winter solstice” for the people of the North? The Greeks celebrated the Bacchanalia, for their pagan god of wine and play, Bacchus. The Romans celebrated the “Saturnalia” for their sun god, Saturn. Mithra was the manifestation of the sun god for an ancient sun-worshipping cult in Rome and Persia. He came down on earth and died for the sins of humanity. His special day was the last day of the week, “Sun-day”.
When the Christians seized power in Rome, they banned the name and the cult of Mithra, but the ideas lived on in a new concept of Christ. In 1647, the Church of England banned Christmas as a Pagan holiday. Christmas had become a drunken, adulterous orgy whose chief character was “St. Nicholas”. This rowdy personality was foreign to the early teachings about Christ.
The Germans saw the image of Saint Nicholas, now known as “Santa Claus” as the Devil himself.
The sun worshippers switched their focus to Dec 31st (New Year’s eve). March was originally the beginning of the Roman New Year. September is from Septum, meaning seven in Latin. For the Romans it was the seventh month. October was the eighth month, November was the ninth month, December stood for the tenth month, January was the eleventh month and February was the last month in the solar year. January was given the new status of marking the beginning of the New Year for a devious reason. It was the month of Janus, the pagan two-faced god who kept one face for spirituality and the other face for gross materialism, drinking and immorality. So this is a time of hypocrisy and two faces, the time when people say one thing and do another.

The Prophet Muhammad(saw) said,
“You will find the most evil, despicable person in the eyes of Allah on the day of Judgement, the person with two faces. He comes to one group with one face and to another group with a different face.” ( Bukhari and Muslim)

This will be our greatest test. Will our Islam end with Ramadan or will Eid be a door that opens onto to the rest of the year?

Oh you who believe:
Fear Allah in your intentions and your deeds. The Last Hour is upon us. The Prophet Muhammad(saw) has revealed to us that the Last Hour would not be established until:
• Two large groups fight each other. There will be a great number of casualiities on both sides. They will be both following one and the same religious doctrine. [1]
• 30 false Prophets will appear, each one claiming to be the last Prophet.
• Religious knowledge will be taken away. [2]
• Earthquakes will increase in number.
• Time will pass quickly. [3]
• Disease will appear.
• Murder will increase.
• Wealth will be in abundance, so abundant that a wealthy person will worry that nobody will accept his Zakah, and whenever he will present it to someone that person will say, “I am not in need of it.”
• The Bedouins will compete with one another in building high buildings. (See “The Book of Al Fitan” in Bukhari and Muslim )
Surely our Beloved Prophet spoke the Truth.
Oh you who believe:
Never forget there are glad tidings in the signs of the Last Day. Islam will eventually be victorious, even before the last days.

The Prophet(saw) was reported to have said:
“Surely this affair (Islam) will reach the distance of the night and the day. Allah will not leave a house except that he enters this religion into it. By the power that Allah will give Islam and the disgrace that he will put down disbelief with.” (Ahmad-authentic)
The Prophet(saw) also informed us:
“There will not cease to be a group of my Ummah, obedient to Allah’s orders, unharmed by those who desert them and oppose them until Allah’s order comes about and they have ascendancy over the people. It was said, ‘O Messenger of Allah, where are they?’
He said, ‘In Jerusalem and the adjacent areas. ‘”
(Ahmad-authentic )

So do not cry for the youth who are facing the enemies of Allah in Palestine. They are throwing stones for the whole Ummah. Allah has blessed them with the presence of Shuhadaah (martyrs). According to authentic Ahadeeth:
• The Shaheed gains forgiveness with the first drop of his blood.
• He sees his place in Paradise.
• He is protected from punishment of grave.
• He is protected from terror of the Day of Judgement.
• He is wed with 72 companions from the beautiful maidens of Paradise.
• He is granted intercession for seventy people of his household.
(Tirmidhi – authentic)
So do not just cry for them, assist them and cry for yourself!

What will our response be when we are called upon to give in the path of Allah? I challenge you and myself in these days following Ramadan to make this year a year of rebirth.

Let us look at four great challenges:

In our leadership:
• We need to strengthen and unite our leadership based on Qur’an and Sunnah. Nobody is too great to seek forgiveness from Allah and pardon from his fellow Muslims. We need to base our decisions and strategies on the needs of the community and the truth of the revelation.
In our Families:
• We need to respect and protect Muslim women. There should be no violence between the husband and the wife. Our motto should be “Zero Tolerance for wife assault and abuse”. No Muslim woman should be humiliated and beaten like an animal in an Islamic home. Let us establish Shura in our homes and open up regular discussions with our family members.
With our youth:
• We need to educate our youth, Islamically, thereby empowering them with the revelation. We should include them in the leadership of our organizations and give them tangible responsibilities. The community should also provide action-oriented alternatives to keep the youth out of confusion, anarchy and fitnah, especially on December 31st, the devilish orgy, now known as New Year’s Eve.

In the Da`wah:
• Let this be a year of Da`wah and outreach to the mainstream society. We must take this message to the airwaves, the streets, the schools, and the universities. Let us inform all people black, white, brown and yellow. There are no more Prophets to come and we, the ummah of the Last Messenger, have the responsibility of taking his message to the rest of humanity. Let us not rest until every house in Southern Africa and then, the world hears the Word of Almighty Allah.

  • May Allah accept our prayers, our fasting our sadaqah and all our good deeds in the month of Ramadan.
  • May Allah give victory to the Mujahideen in Chechnya, Palestine, Kashmir, Sudan, Nigeria and throughout the world.
  • May Allah give comfort to those Muslims who are trapped in prison here in South Africa and throughout the world.
  • May Allah unite us and raise from amongst us a Khalifah to lead the Muslim world.
  • May Allah bless everyone who is here today and everyone who witnesses this message with Paradise, and may He bless us all with the pleasures of experiencing his Divine Presence

Oh Allah bear witness that I have given them the Message, Surely You have power over all affairs.

NOTES
1 This prophecy was fulfilled with the “fitnah” and war that happened between the companions in the Khilaafat of Ali ibn Abi Talib (ra).

2 In another Hadeeth, the Prophet(saw) revealed that it would be
“The death of the ‘Ulamaah”. A number of great scholars have died in the past year.

3 Muslims throughout the world have expressed their surprise at apparent shortness of this Ramadan.


GLOSSARY OF ARABIC TERMS USED
Da’wah: The call to Islam
Eid-ul-Fitr: The day of celebration which follows the fasting month of Ramadan.
Shawwal : The tenth Islamic month, the first day of which marks Eid-ul-Fitr.
(saw)
– sallallahu `alayhi wassallam: May Allah Bestow peace and salutations upon him.
Sunnah: The words and actions of the last Prophet of Islam , which Muslims are required to practise.
Ramadan: The month during which fasting is compulsory upon Muslims, as revealed in the Qur’an.
Tawheed: The Oneness of God.
Hadeeth: A saying of the Prophet Muhammad [plural: ahadeeth]
Hadeeth Qudsi: This is a Hadeeth revealed by the Prophet Muhammad , which contains the direct words of Allah.
Masjid: The arabic word for the mosque, the Muslim place of worship.
Sadaqah: Voluntary charity, which is encouraged by Islam.
Zakah: Obligatory charity, compulsory upon Muslims who possess a specified amount of wealth.
Hilal: The new crescent which is used to determine the beginning of an Islamic month.
Hajj: Obligatory pilgrimage to the House of Allah, the Ka’abah in Makkah.
Holy Harams: The mosque of the Prophet in Madeenah, the sacred mosque in Makkah, and the Masjid Al Aqsa in Palestine.
Jumu`ah Prayer: The Friday afternoon prayer which is compulsory upon Muslim men.
Madhaahib: Schools of Islamic thought.
Mujahideen: Muslims who fight in the Path of Allah, to protect and uphold Islam.
Haraam: forbidden, as stipulated by the Qur’aan.
Shaheed: an Islamic martyr. [plural: shuhadaah]
Shura: mutual consultation.
Ummah: nation
Khaleefah: The head of an Islamic state.
Khilaafah: Islamic governance.
Fitnah: trials, discord, civil strife.
`Ulaamah: Islamic scholars.
(ra): radi- Allahu `anhu: May Allah Pleased with him.
Dua: prayer or supplication

(as) – alayhis salaam: May Peace be upon him.

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