Rana Rais Khan – Founder – Hiba Family Resource Centre
Salads are refreshing. The basic salad has crispy lettuce, cherry tomatoes, cool cucumbers and pungent onions tossed together in lime, garlic and herbs, all coming together to offer a distinct, juicy burst of flavor. You can keep adding ingredients to it and experiment with the dressing but will it then continue to be nutritious and delicious?
Metaphorically, that is how societies are also emerging in the world. We have all kinds of man-made ideologies today that are vying for our attention and support- YOLO, atheism, humanism. But there is a catch. None of them are backed by Divine Scripture, and so they are ‘flexible’ in their morality and ethics. In effect, they are inherently self-serving and flawed in their perception of what is humane.
Islam offers a very detailed and distinct set of laws to the believers for their guidance in this world. The principles and laws it offers is in accordance with man’s natural disposition. It offers mercy and establishes justice in the world though the means and methods may not seem merciful or just to eyes that only perceive the apparent harm or benefit of this world only. To be able to understand Islamic logic, one has to keep in view that this world is transitory and that we must work for the greater good, not just for the pursuit of individual happiness..
There is no room for the power hungry and greedy in Islam. They cannot co-exist with the rest. But what happens when Muslims deviate from these fundamental doctrines?
“Say: He is the [one] able to send upon you affliction from above you or from beneath your feet, or to confuse you [so you become] sects and make you taste the violence of one another.” Look how We diversify the signs that they might understand.” (Al Anaam:65)
History proves that some nations perished instantly. We only witness some of their remains or hear about their horrific tales of death and destruction. Allah’s (swt) Wrath fell upon them as per His knowledge and wisdom.
Others have been engulfed in diseases of the heart. They are inflicted with a long-term, slow paced punishment – not instant but consistent, like the tightening of a noose.
Why are nations punished?
- They follow their desires and lusts and forsake Allah’s (swt) Guidance.
- They choose a personalized life style that is self-serving and disturbs the delicate order and balance that Allah (swt) established for the temporal world.
- They enforce man-made laws and reject justice-based Shariah and the Aakhirah (Afterlife).
- Their main motive is greed and acquiring control over the world depicting a guise of a well-wisher all along.
- Countries, economies, organizations and individuals exploit those weaker than themselves.
What happens when tyrants take over?
Society is divided into three groups. The first group that submits to tyranny willingly and benefits from the resulting privileges. Then, there are those who unwillingly submit to the new man-made order. Lastly, there are those who revolt instantly and these clashes end up in wars.
Consequently the tyrants want to crush the opposition and take over forcefully. The exploiter’s main aim is to establish their order. In earlier times, injustices were meted out and the truth was buried easily. With the advent of the social media and news leaks, information becomes viral instantly.
Currently we witness confrontation at various levels in the world. There seems widespread disunity. This is termed as the culture of Jahiliyah that encircles us which stems from the rejection of Allah’s (swt) laws and giving preference to man-made laws.
“Then is it the judgment of (the time of) ignorance they desire? But who is better than Allah in judgment for a people who are certain [in faith].” (Al Maidah 5:50)
What should the believers do?
- Safeguard your Iman (belief) by staying at a safe distance from the culture of Jahiliyah.
- Repent consciously and consistently yourself.
- Seek to rectify your own life by following the Shariah.
- Remain content with what Allah (swt) has granted.
- Perform Amal-e-Sualeh (good deeds) constantly with a plan and focus.
- Demonstrate the best of Akhlaq (mannerisms).
- Trust Allah’s (swt) Decree and Divine Help.
- Remember your identity as a believer where ever you live.
What if the believers gave up?
Allah’s (swt) punishment spares no one if they reject guidance and choose oppression. As Al Haadee (The Guide), he sends His guidance to mankind. He is Al Hakam (The Just), and he doesn’t play favourites. He is Al Ghafoor (The Forgiver), but beware that He is also Al Haseeb (The Reckoner).
If the believers will not distance themselves from the culture of Jaahilyah and instead partake from it, their end will be the same as of those who disbelieve. All rebels and transgressors will be eventually punished.
Hence, as believers, we cannot go with the flow. We need to distinguish ourselves by practicing our faith and demonstrating Islam in our lifestyle choices. The believers will face hardships, and we will offer sacrifices. But this will be nothing compared to the suffering we will face if we forgo Allah’s (swt) Guidance.
“Those who believe, fight in the cause of Allah and those who disbelieve, fight in the cause of Taghut (Satan). So fight you against the friends of Shaitan; ever feeble indeed is the plot of Shaitan (Satan). (An Nisa:76)