Just Say Al-Hamdulillah!
Dr. Pasha's Thanksgiving Message: 2016!
This Thanksgiving -- And Every Other Thanksgiving!
And Every Moment of Your Life To the Extent You Can!
(Bringing Islam to the World One Concept at a Time!
Taking the Qur'an to Every Home and Heart that Needs It --
And which One Does Not?)
This Thanksgiving, and every Thanksgiving thereafter, just say "Alhamdulillah!"
There is no better wording or formula to give thanks to God Almighty than to say: "Alhamdulillah!"
Because these words are God's own words -- in the Qur'an -- unadulterated and unaltered by human agencies of any kind in any form or fashion.
And these words are not a translation, but the original: the very words that came down with the Qur'an into this world over 1400 years ago. And that God Almighty has seen to it that they stay with us until now -- and forever hereafter!
So these words -- "Alhamdulillah!" -- are nothing but a Divine Miracle in our hands. And they remain pure and perfect to this day, just as God sent them down over a millennium and a half ago.
And so they shall remain -- pure and perfect and fresh -- for as long as the world lasts.
Maa Daamatis Samaawaatu Wal Ardu!
"For as long as the heavens and the earth remain in place."
So, just say "Alhamdulillah!” and get on with your life.
You couldn't possibly say it more nicely, more completely, more up-to-date and up-to-the-minute.
And you couldn't -- not in all the worlds -- say it better.
So, Al-Hamdu Lillah it is, everybody!
And guess what, you don't even have to be a Muslim to say it: good or bad Muslim; practicing or non-practicing Muslim; devout or superficial Muslim -- whatever those expressions mean.
So long as you feel you have been "given" something special in your life: such as one single breath in your body; one drop of water to trickle down your throat; one morsel of food to land into your stomach; one kind word, gesture or look from a parent, child, friend, colleague or neighbor.
Or one solitary star sparkling up above in your sky; one leaf of grass growing in your line of vision; and one single moment of stable and steady earth beneath your feet.
If you don't get my meaning, I suggest you go and buy any of these things in the market.
Go Digital if you have to. And see what you get. You do live inside your iPhone, many of you, anyway! So, why not put Version 8 -- yet to come out as of December 1, 2016 -- to work for that purpose.
But if you can't, and there is no way you could do it -- Fa-In Lam Taf'aloo, wa Lan Taf'aloo -- then fear God and fear the Fire of Hell that will be the fate of many human beings -- and stones.
Fattaqunnaar Allatee Waqooduhan Naasu Wal Hijaarah!
Or just train yourself to say: Al-Hamdulillah! And see what comes out.
And so they shall remain, these words -- pure and perfect and Divine -- for as long as the world lasts:
So, God Almighty sent the Qur’an into this world to initiate us human beings -- each and everyone of us, regardless of our race, religion or gender or nationality -- into a Culture of Gratitude, Appreciation and Thankfulness.
To God -- and in many ways also to each other.
For, the Hadith Sharif says, what I am paraphrasing here -- very, very freely:
"If you don't know how to be nice and civil and kind to each other;
and how to show gratitude to each other;
and how to say "Thank You" to each other,
then how in the world would you ever be able
to give real and proper thanks to God Almighty,
who is not only your maker and master,
but also the maker, master and keeper of all,
as well as the protector of the interests of
each and every one of his creation?"
What a Hadith! Hear the words for yourself -- let them ring in your ears loud, clear and unambiguous!
Man Lam Yashkurin-Naas,
So, the Qur'an came into this world to teach us all how to give thanks all around and how to appreciate what we have and to build on it.
And to teach us all to keep a positive, proactive, purposeful, self-empowering attitude to life and to all things around us.
And to encourage us to help each other to reach our best potential in all things good (Ma'roof) and to cease and desist from approaching all things that may be bad, harmful or detrimental (Munkar).
And to say "Thank You!" to God Almighty in the most beautiful and perfect way: "Alhamdulillah!"
And to do so at every juncture, at every opportunity, and at every occasion in our life.
From the very moment when morning wakefulness brings back the first stirring of life in us and we begin to rub sleep from our eyes.
Here is what the Hadith teaches us to say -- first thing when we wake up everyday, day after day -- before we may even leave our bed:
Alhamdu Lillah Alladhee Ahyaana
Ba'da Maa Amaatanaa!
"Thank You God Almighty!
The One who returned me to life,
After I lay dead all night,
While I slept!"
So, if you really think about it, not a moment goes by in human life when God's Love, Mercy, Grace and Bounties do not come pouring down on us in torrents.
Even the least fortunate among us!
The Qur'an came to help us all out -- Muslim as well as non-Muslim. The Qur'an taught us how to give Thanks to God Almighty properly and effectively.
The Qur'an said: Just say "Al-Hamdu Lillah!"
And this is how the Qur'an put it:
Qulil Hamdu Lillah!
If the Qur'an had given the world, and given all of us human beings, nothing but just this one thing, how to say Al-Hamdulillah, and how to give thanks to God Almighty using his own words, and do so as much as we can, and all the time if we can, the world would forever be in Qur'an's debt.
And what could be a better preoccupation for any human being in this world than to fill his or her days with the perpetual, unceasing chant of "Al-Hamdulillah!"?
Practically, each and everyone of us, has too, too many things To Give Thanks to God For, To Be Grateful to God Almighty For.
Hear the Qur'an say it, addressing each and everyone of us directly:
Wa In Ta'uddoo Ni'matallahi Laa Tuhsoohaa!
Here is my very broad and liberal paraphrase of that most beautiful Aayat Karimah of the Qur'an, as is each and every single one of the over 6000 Aayats of the Qur'an a most beautiful one:
"If you were to sit down to count,
tabulate and document the bounties,
gifts and blessings of Allah Almighty,
that he showers you with all the time,
there is no way you will ever be able to exhaust the count!"
Now do you understand why the Hadith Sharif would call Alhamdulillah! the best and finest and the most comprehensive and the most effective "prayer" there is on the face of this earth?
And here the word used is Du'a, which means "prayer," as we use that word in our daily practice.
So, my very selfish and quite possibly very limited way of reading that Hadith is this:
Just keep saying "Alhamdulillah!" forever!
Say "Alhamdulillah!" once, pocket whatever blessings and bounties God Almighty throws in your lap, and then immediately turn around and say "Alhamdulillah!" again.
And just keep doing it, nonstop! Repeat, repeat, repeat! And you may never want for anything as long as you live.
Does that make sense?
As for Thanksgiving itself, it is an American Festival Par Excellence -- part pseudo-religious, part-pagan, part-commercial, part pseudo-historical, part whatever you want to make it.
All-American to the core!
So, from the bottom of our heart, this Thanksgiving, and every other Thanksgiving, let us all say: Thank You God Almighty for All You Have Given Us -- And Continue to Give Us!
And let us do so regardless of our religion, race, ethnicity, status of belief and disbelief, or ideology.
And in doing this, let us all try and use God's Almighty's own words in the Qur'an and just say: "Alhamdulillah!"