Fruits for the Week

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C. The consequences

Understand fully that Allah’s word does not come to bring misery, disgrace and suffering to man. Allah (swt) said: “We have not sent down the Qur’an upon you that you be wretched.” (Taha: 1-2). On the contrary, the Qur’an is the source of happiness and success. It is impossible for a people to possess Allah’s word and yet suffer disgrace and ignominy, live under subjugation, be trampled on and kicked around, and carry the yoke of slavery on their necks, being led by the nose like animals. A people meet this fate only when they do injustice to the word of Allah (swt).

Look at the fate of the Israelites. They were given the Tawrah and the Injil, and were told: “Had they established the Tawrah and the Gospel and what was sent down to them by their Lord. They would surely have partaken of all the blessings from above them (heaven) and beneath their feet (earth).” (Al-Maidah: 66)

But they adopted a wrong attitude towards these Books of Allah (swt), and reaped the consequences: “An ignominy and helplessness were laid upon them, and they were laden with the burden of God’s anger. That, because they used to disbelieve God’s messages and slay the prophets against all rights; that because they disobeyed and were transgressors.” (Al-Baqarah: 61)

If people possess Allah’s Book and still live in disgrace and subjugation, they are surely being punished for doing injustice to Allah’s word. The only way to save you from Allah’s anger is to turn back from this grave sin and start trying to render His Book its due. Until you do, your condition will never change – even if you open colleges in each and every village, all your children graduate from universities, and you amass millions through unscrupulous means.

D. No Islam without submitting to the Qur’an

Two most important things every Muslim must know to do justice to the Book of Allah: who is truly a Muslim and what the word ‘Muslim’ means.

Human beings who do not know what humanity is and what is the difference between man and animal will inevitably indulge in behaviour unworthy of the human race and attached no value to being human.  Similarly, people who do not know the true meaning of being Muslims and how a Muslim is different from a non-Muslim will behave like non-Muslims and will not be worthy of being Muslims.

Every Muslim, adult or child, should therefore know what it means to be a Muslim, what difference in being a Muslim must make to his life, what responsibilities devolve on him, and what limits are set by Islam within which a man remains a Muslim and by transgressing which he ceases to be a Muslim.

Islam means submission and obedience to Allah swt. To entrust yourselves completely to Allah (swt) is Islam. To relinquish all claims to absolute freedom and independence and to follow Allah’s will is Islam. To surrender yourselves before the sovereignty of Allah (swt) is Islam. If you bring all the affairs of your lives under Allah (swt), you are Muslims and if you keep any of the affairs in your hands or entrust them to someone other than Allah (swt) you are not Muslims.

To bring your affairs under Allah (swt) means to accept unreservedly the guidance sent by Allah (swt) through His Book and His Messengers. It therefore becomes necessary to follow only the Qur’an and the Prophet’s sunnah. Muslims follow no authority other than that of Allah, whether it be their reason or customs. In every matter they seek guidance from Allah’s Book and His Messenger to find what they should do and what they should not do. They accept without hesitation whatever guidance they get from there and reject whatever they find opposed to it.

Such total surrender to Allah (swt) is what makes one a Muslim. By contrast, people are certainly not Muslims who, instead of following the Qur’an and the Sunnah, obey the dictates of their own reason and desires, follow the practices of their forefathers, accept what is happening in society, and never bother to ascertain from the Qur’an and Sunnah how to run their affairs, or refuse to accept the teachings of the Qur’an and Sunnah by saying: ‘They do not appeal to my reason’, or ‘They are against the ways of my forefathers’ or ‘ The world is moving in an opposite direction’. Such people are liars if they call themselves Muslims. 

The moment you recite the Kalimah: ‘La ilaha illallah Muhammad Rasulullah’ you accept that the only law you recognize is the law of Allah (swt). Only Allah is your sovereign, only Allah is your ruler, only Allah you will obey, and only the things given in Allah’s Book and by His Messengers are true and right. It means that as soon as you become Muslims you must renounce your authority in favour of Allah’s authority.

(Ends)

by Abul A’la Mauwdudi