This is one reason why I love the Muslims. There is an Enemy Within, and they sleep happily ever after. They hear the footsteps of the prowler. In the basement and all over the house. And...
Battling the Nafs: A Million Encounters and Skirmishes Continuing to Create New Literature for New Times! One Single Concept at a Time! For most people, Battling Nafs is an Ongoing War. And a War is a Multiplicity of who knows how many Battles. And...
Battling Nafs may be, and it is, a battle that goes on every moment of our life. And it must go on that way. For, Nafs requires constant vigilance. But Islam is all about Thought, Language, Action, Niyyat, Goals and Results....
Terrible to say, but I thrive on approval and support from people. Nafs, as some people very close to me have called it. And, if you ask me, rightly so. At a purely Cognitive or Mental Level, as if...
Good Muslims go to mosque, engage in community activities, and stay away from bad things -- what in Islam will be called Munkaraat.
Well, Bad Things -- things Muslims should not be doing.
But often Good Muslims' list of Mukaraat is partial and one-sided. It generally leaves out some critical items -- well, items like...
You sure you want me to mention them? I don't want to upset you.
But if you insist, just let me give one or two items and leave it at that.
Good Muslims' list of Munkaraat may often leave out a few things like Personal Arrogance.
One catch-all expression -- taken directly from the Qur'an -- is Hawaa!
And doing things for show and name and fame. Islam calls it 'Ujb and Sum'ah and Riyaa'.
As a result, many Good Muslims end up being what a good friend called Mosque Managers..
And they become Jama'at Presidents and Community Leaders.
And in doing this, they become the Gatekeepers for Islam and Muslims. Their job then becomes keeping new ideas and new leadership from coming to the fore in the Muslim community.
Thus, they become the Guardians and Keepers of the Islamic gates and citadels.
Call them the Keepers of the Status Quo if you will.
As such, they lord it over the Muslim masses -- regardless of whether or not they are even aware they are doing it -- keeping the Muslims in darkness and doubt and keeping Islam from breaking out.
Even though we all live – hopefully – in free and democratic societies, and operate by democratic norms, Working for Allah means constantly dedicating and rededicating ourselves, with single-mindedness, to our Program, our Jama'at and our Leadership.
Failure or hesitation to do that is indicative of breakdown of mental discipline and spiritual commitment on the part of individuals.
And it is suggestive of lack of personal growth and progress in one’s journey to Allah.
They are all instances of problems, and possibly ongoing struggles, inside people, many of which could be summed up under the rubric of Nafs – selfishness and self-centeredness.
Such individuals generally have a tendency to be focused on themselves rather than on the Jama'at, the Program and the Leadership with which they are supposed to be working.
At that level, it is generally a problem of what is called Ikhlas and Iman.
Left unaddressed, these issues will come to the fore sooner or later, as the Jama’at continues to plod along in the pursuit of its goals.
And these individuals, unless they correct their attitudes in time, may turn out to be a problem to the Jama’at and the work down the road.
When people invite people to a party with booze and boogey, people say yes with great alacrity: those you know and those you don't.
Or even for a simple community Cook-Out.
That is because there are all kinds of internal and external facilitators working to make that happen.
But when people invite people to come to a Qur'an Session, where God Almighty's word could be read and studied and understood, then many people tend to drag their feet. All of a sudden, all kinds of difficulties and excuses pop up along the way.
That is because there is a whole host of internal inhibitors and external pressures working to make things difficult for everyone involved, when the party pertains to God and his work.
The Devil and his multitudes, both human and Jinn, would rather you sleep the afternoon off than go and study the Qur'an with those who can help you to read and understand it better.
There is nothing the Devil and his minions want more than to stop you from ever getting close to God's Word on earth: the Noble Qur'an.
However, the key to success in these situations is patience and perseverance. What the Qur'an calls Sabr.
As Allah says in the Qur'an: Success comes with patience.
Wa Tawaasau Bilhaqqi Wa Tawaasau Bis-Sabr, is how the Qur'an puts it.
Message for Eidul Ad-haa
“My message for this Eidul Ad-haa is a simple one.
When Muslims and their small and big leaders proceed to slaughter and sacrifice their camels, sheep, goats and cows, I suggest they ask the following question of themselves: To what extent are they sacrificing these animals at the altar of God and to what extent are they sacrificing Islam and Muslims, and the overall wellbeing of God’s creation on earth, at the altar of their own egos; selfishness; greed; corruption; politics; ambition; and cooptation by and sellout to the Devil and his minions and agents?” (Dr. Pasha)
Manchester, UK 2003