Random Thoughts and Notes No. 1176-1200

1176.    The Isnad methodology in the Islamic tradition is basically the connection one has with the elders of the community who learned an important aspect of the religion, be that Hadith, Quran, Tassawuf, etc.

1177.    A sign that Allah is pleased with us is that we are pleased with all the things destined for us as they unfold in our lives, the good things and the bitter things.

1178.    (As mentioned): The rule is that if you don’t get on the bus (i.e., convert to Islam), your matter will be dealt with by Allah in the Akhirah, the Hereafter; but once you get on the bus (become a Muslim) then follow the traffic and the municipality rules, don’t start playing with the system, consequences are there in this world as well, not only in the Hereafter.

1179.    (As mentioned) One thing academically inclined people (Shuyookh) can try to do if they feel “puffed up” is to volunteer for youth programs, since in such cases, the academic knowledge has its use, but not in such a strong manner as in the classroom, plus one may need to play with children and so forth, and academia is not relevant in this latter case.

1180.    It seems one point with miracles as seen in Islam is that there is no “predictive power” behind them (as per the scientistic conception of “prediction” and how prediction is central to scientific inquiry). This is an important part of the “paradox” we need to consider when talking to skeptics: The “predictive power” of scientific models versus indubitable reports of miracles.

1181.    (An admonition): We often tell people Ramadhan is about having empathy with the truly hungry – but how can this be true when we fill our Iftar plates with food we will eventually throw away (at least ½ of it in many cases!!)? – it seems ludicrous we would even talk about empathy for the poor while having such negligent lifestyles.

1182.    We rightly talk about the need to establish justice and that this starts at home; in fact it starts in one’s own self, knowing what the rules of Islam are outwardly and inwardly, and doing one’s best to apply them, so as not to commit injustice towards what Allah has legislated for one’s own self.

1183.    What to say when parents themselves become worried that their children have become more religious??- how will the Ummah face its problems moving forward when this is the situation often observed from the “elders” of the Muslim community?

1184.    Justice must be meted out for Allah’s sake only, otherwise even that act of “justice” is spiritually blameworthy.

1185.    The 7 types of persons shaded under the Throne of Allah have Afterlife benefits no doubt; yet there are benefits for themselves and for society in this world as well, if people with these traits exist within an Islamic land.

1186.    We should understand that liberalism, secularism and atheism are seen as axiomatic pillars in many lands where Masajid are built, even in Muslim-majority countries. So we have rejection of authority, private religion at most, and strict naturalism as the founding assumptions even when Muslims are given a few “privileges” (which is also why such “rights” are always one election or parliamentary session away from being stripped away from Muslims).

1187.    Love for mundane things is fleeting, as the poet said the eyes cry if the wanted thing is far and also if it is near, either due to longing for it or fearing that it will leave- so the lesson is, one must connect primordially to Allah.

1188.    The actions of Ibaada are not primitive, rather they are primordial; that is, they are the primordial actions that have in one way or the other always connected man to his Lord.

1189.    Dunya could potentially mean different things to different people. The Shaytan plays tricks, such that one is addicted to wealth but not fame, another vice-versa; even the “Islamic Dunya” exists, and we must be careful even about that (this could be love for being an Islamic personality, the benefits of being a well-known and respected “Shaykh”, and so on).

1190.    The matter of those who “make up their own Islam” is also related to the respect that Western–based knowledge has in the minds of some people: One knows that to be a doctor one needs so many years of study and practice, yet for the new Muslim convert (and often the born-Muslim as well) he feels he can figure it out all by himself with minimal formal study. Forget natural sciences, even formal law studies are seen with this reverence while Islamic studies often are not– it seems to be a total subjugation of the Muslims’ minds that must be fought.

1191.    There is Raja’ which is hope in Allah that inspires action, and there is Umniyyah, which is hope without action being inspired; same is the case between Tawakkul and Tawaakul.

1192.    Don’t seek forgiveness from Allah because of who you are, do it because Allah is the Forgiver; parable is given of the drunk man, who had no good deeds and was asked why and how can you make Istighfaar? It is because Allah is the One who Forgives.

1193.    Consider the importance of being with people; the Prophet (ﷺ) met Allah and saw Allah according to most opinions, yet had to return to this world and mingle with the people and the people’s low things (the disbelievers and simpletons, we mean).

1194.    The mother loves the child because she needs the child. So it is a love based on contingent realities and reasons; Allah loves yet He is Al-Ghanyy (rich and free from all needs in every way), so think about the Love of Allah in this way.

1195.    People talk about the pre-eminence of science and how it is very rational- yet blind, non-rational naturalism can only lead to non-rational effects, or the illusion of rationalism, so we cannot in truth have a conversation with naturalists about the proper place of rationalism since there is no common ground for discussion in the first place. Thus, the naturalist says rationalism is an illusion to begin with, and/or a side effect of evolutionary pressures, so clear thinking and rational evidences don’t truly have a preeminence with our naturalist adversaries.

1196.    We should recognize the distinction between learning, practicing and tasting knowledge – these are all different, plus we should know that the goal, the beginning and ending is Allah, plain and simple.

1197.    (As mentioned) The real student is the one who takes from those who know more, the same, and less than he presently knows. Without this characteristic, the person in question is not a real student of Islamic knowledge.

1198.    It is a rule in Islam, that truth is spread through sacrifice. So don’t ever expect things to be merry and easy – look at some of the established Muslim communities today; it took them 2, 3 or 4 centuries for them to attain this rank of stability.

1199.    Tafsir and Safar (travelling) have an etymological relationship. This is because Safar makes the reality of the person clear many a times, and Tafsir (‘Fassara’) makes things very clear (linguistically speaking).

1200.    Rahmah as regards to Allah is Mutlaq at-Tafaadhul wal-Ihsaan as opposed to Riqqah fil Qalb, which it is for humans (i.e. the Totality of Benevolence and Giving as opposed to a mere Feeling of Mercy in the Heart).