Quote-Unquote - Book VI (501-600)

Feb 12, 2014

So, nowadays, when many of those Working for Allah go through the same sorrow and suffering that Prophet Abraham, Alaihis Salam, went through, and they also experience the same sense of being alone and unsupported in the world, they must draw comfort from knowing that they are not alone.

They must know that they are very special people in the eyes of their maker – and their true master and employer in this world – and each one of them is nothing less than a full-fledged team and a nation.

So, where are all the solitary and lonely fighters for Allah and Humanity today? 

Here is a message for them: 

You may be one in your own eyes, and in the eyes of the world, but in the eyes of your creator you are a sea swell of humanity -- each one of you a Nation Entire of Himself or Herself.

And before you take one more step in your lonely and solitary path, stop! Tarry a while; take a breath; and then take along this personal message that Prophet Muhammad, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, left for you:

Toobaa Lil Ghurabaa!

Paraphrase:

My personal greetings, congratulations and felicitations to those lonely, solitary souls, who are shunned and rejected by others because of their love of God and because of their Working for Allah!


516

A Qur'an-Hadith Continuum

People fight and argue all the time. And they do that over everything they can possibly think of. And that includes Muslims.

Here is how Allah characterizes human beings in the Qur’an:

Wa Kaanal Insaanu Akthara Shai-in Jadala!

Paraphrase:

Humans are most prone to arguments and disputations!

And these disputes also involve Qur’an and Hadith.

Meaning:

How is the Qur’an or the Hadith in relation to the other? How are the two interrelated?

To me this whole thing is a non-starter. And to me the whole thing is self-evident – well, almost.

To me Qur’an is Qur’an and Hadith is Hadith and you cannot have one without the other.

Qur’an, of course, is from Allah, and Hadith, as everyone knows, is from Rasulullah, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam.

But then one should not forget that Rasulullah, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, was also from Allah. The bottom line, as they say, is this: He was Allah’s man on earth, right?

So, what does that, then, make the Hadith? The fact that there is this special individual, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, through whom Allah is speaking to the whole world.

Let me put it to you this way:

If you look down at the world – better call it reality – from above, from Heaven as it were, it is the Qur’an.

And when you look up at the same world – reality that is – from below, from the earth as it were, it is Hadith.

From this point of view, one is Al-Kitab, while the other is Al-Hikmah.

And that is language I have taken from the Qur’an: Al-Kitab wal Hikmah.

From this point of view, the Qur’an is Al-Kitab, while the Hadith is Al-Hikmah.

And they are both from God: Hadith from the mouth of Prophet Muhammad, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, and the Qur’an Allah’s direct speech.

To me the differences between the two are as clear as their similarities. Or should I have used the word “identity”?


515

Many Come, Few Tarry

I don’t know who said this: “To God, many come, but few tarry.”

Or words to that effect.

Could it be Jesus, God Bless Him? The words do have a Biblical ring.

Or maybe no one ever said it – and I just made them up.

Regardless, the words speak an eternal truth about the nature of God and Man – as some people would say.

Man,” as you should know, is not my word.

Thomas Jefferson used it: All Men Are Created Equal. Sad, but he did.

Thomas Paine used it: Rights of Man. Even more sad, but he did too.

If I am not mistaken, Yusuf Ali uses it in his translation of the Qur’an, and quite a few times, which is nothing short of a disaster.

Alhamdulillah, I don’t. At least to the extent I am aware.

Instead, I try to use the words that render the expressions in the Qur’an – Annaas, Al-Ins and Al-Insaan – the best and the closest to the original text of the Qur’an: People; Human Being; the Human.

So, the words “Many Come, Few Tarry” provide a remarkable insight into the relationship that binds human beings to God.

The word “tarry” means to wait; to stay; to stick around.

The fact is that these words, “Many Come, Few Tarry,” as a characterization of human relationship with God, speak an eternal, and a very disconcerting truth, about who we are as human beings.

These words seem to say:

While many of us may be tempted to come to God initially – and enlist to do Allah’s work, as in Working for Allah – most of us would leave after a while.

There are a number of reasons why this happens. But the most important one – and it is the only one that really matters – is the fact that their names are not on Allah’s Final List.

In other words, these are people who failed to make the Final Cut.

Looked at from a worldly point of view, reasons for this human attrition in the business of Working for Allah could be many. One of them is motivation.

That is right!

Many of those who leave midway to find a more comfortable personal niche elsewhere are people who came into this work with mixed motivations to begin with.

They wanted other things than Allah and his work.

Or they wanted more things than Allah and his work.

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