Friday Sermon

From Allah’s Norms in the Universe: Causal Relationship

All praise is due to Allah, the Lord of all worlds, Who says in His Ever Glorious Book, “Say [Prophet], ‘Take action! Allah will see your actions- as will His Messenger and the believers- and then you will be returned to Him who knows what is seen and unseen, and He will tell you what you have been doing.’” I bear witness that there is no god but Allah, and that Muhammad is His Servant and Messenger. May Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him, his Household, Companions and upon those who follow their path to the Day of Judgment.

The Almighty Allah has created this world and stated norms to govern it and rules that regulate every action in it. For example, no subsequent shall precede a precedent, nor the vice versa. The Almighty Allah says, “The sun cannot overtake the moon, nor can the night outrun the day: each floats in [its own] orbit.” He, the Exalted, also says, “You will never find any change in Allah’s practice; you will never find any deviation there.” Allah has made these norms a balance that regulates the movement of life, and achieves the construction and preservation of the earth, which is one of the purposes of creation, as the Almighty Allah says, “It was He who brought you into being from the earth and made you inhabit it,” and says, “do not cause corruption in the land after it has been set in order.” It goes without saying that nations that realize these norms and act accordingly will advance, even if they are not Muslim, or even if they are not believers at all; these norms do not take the side of certain people, or prefer someone to another.

Among these universal norms is the rule of causality. Allah is the creator of means and results, and He commanded us to make use of all available means. Once means are utilized, results will follow. This is a universal norm, unassociated with certain time or place. Every action has its cause: fire causes burning; killing causes death; eating causes satisfaction, working leads to success, laziness causes failure, etc.

The command to work is a religious obligation and a national duty, as the Almighty Allah says, “It is He who has made the earth manageable for you–travel its regions; eat His provision- and to Him you will be resurrected.” Allah also says, “Then when the prayer has ended, disperse in the land and seek out Allah’s bounty. Remember Allah often so that you may prosper.” This is the concept of the Islam regarding striving, hardworking, diligence, and the reconstruction of the land. There is no excuse for us to be in deteriorated conditions, under any pretext that have nothing to do with religion; these pretexts are just claims of idleness, laziness and backwardness.

Reviewing the lives of Prophets and righteous people, one finds that they used to diligently make use of the available means in all their affairs. Prophet Noah (PBUH) was a carpenter. After his long life in calling his people to Allah, the Almighty Allah commanded him to build the Ark, as Allah said, “Build the Ark under Our [watchful] eyes and with Our inspiration. Do not plead with Me for those who have done evil- they will be drowned.” It was possible that Allah saves Prophet Noah whit His Power without any reason or action on the part of Noah. But Allah wanted to teach us how to make use of available means. Prophet Noah obeyed the command of Allah and made the Ark in spite of his people mockery at him. Allah said, “So he began to build the Ark, and whenever leaders of his people passed by, they laughed at him. He said, ‘You may scorn us now, but we will come to scorn you:” He continued his work, and Allah rewarded him and the believers of his people.

Prophet David (PBUH) was a blacksmith. Allah taught him this craft that benefited him and his people. Allah said, “We graced David with Our favour. We said, ‘You mountains, echo Allah’s praises together with him, and you birds, too.’ We softened iron for him, saying, ‘Make coats of chain mail and measure the links well.’ ‘Do good, all of you, for I see everything you do.’” Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said, “No food is better to man than that which one earns through his manual work. David (PBUH), the Prophet of Allah, ate only out of his earnings from his manual work.

In the story of Prophet Joseph (PBUH), using the available means and the careful planning were the reasons for the survival of the whole country from a deadly famine. Prophet Joseph prepared a long and deliberate plan to save the country from a famine that threatened the whole world, and achieved for his country prosperity, protection, and economic power. People of his time came from every far place to get the bounties of Egypt. The Glorious Qur’an narrates this for us saying, “Joseph said, ‘You will sow for seven consecutive years as usual. Store all that you reap, left in the ear, apart from the little you eat.  After that will come seven years of hardship which will consume all but a little of what you stored up for them; after that will come a year when the people will have abundant rain and will press grapes.’”

Allah, Most High, used to provide Lady Maryam (Virgin Marry) with abundant provision that Prophet Zechariah was surprised, which is why he said to her as recorded in the Quran, “Every time Zechariah entered upon her in the prayer chamber, he found with her provision. He said, “O Mary, from where is this [coming] to you?” She said, “It is from Allah. Indeed, Allah provides for whom He wills without account.” In another situation, she was so weak yet Allah orders her to shake toward her the trunk of the palm tree so that dates would fall down. Had Allah willed the dates to fall down with no effort at all from her, He would have done so, yet He, Most High, teaches us to employ and not to neglect means. He, Most High, says, “And shake toward you the trunk of the palm tree; it will drop upon you ripe, fresh dates.”

Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) offered the best example ever in utilizing means, a point that was clear during his blessed journey of Hijra. He (PBUH) taught his Ummah that good planning and careful arrangement are necessary to success and overcoming crises. He (PBUH) prepared two camels, chose his honest companion and set the place and time suitable for leaving Mecca. So, they left Mecca at night and chose a very skillful guide, which explicitly indicates that he (PBUH) was fully aware of the importance of giving precedence to efficient people and making use of energies, irrespective of the fact that thoughts, opinions and even creeds may be different. Then he (PBUH) ordered Amer ibn Fuhayra (Allah be pleased with him) to follow their footprints and erase them even though he fully knows that Allah fully protects them, which means that he (PBUH) was fully aware of the importance of utilizing the means; that is to say that he (PBUH) wanted to teach us the Allah’s Law decrees that we should utilize means and then entrust all our affairs to Allah, Most High.

With that said, I ask Allah to forgive me and you

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

All praise is due to Allah, Lord of the Worlds; I bear witness that there is no god but Allah; and I bear witness that our master Prophet Muhammad is His slave and Messenger; may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him, his family, companions and whoever follows their guidance to the Day of Judgment.

Muslim brothers,

Utilizing of means does not contradict with reliance on Allah, Most High. In truth, he who realizes the essence of reliance on Allah will certainly utilize means; that is to say that a person who truly relies on Allah is a one who utilizes means, exerts his efforts and energy and entrust all his affairs to Allah. In this regard, He, Most High, said, “It is You we worship and You we ask for help.” Highlighting the practical application of reliance on Allah, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: “If you all depend on Allah with due reliance, He would certainly give you provision as He gives it to birds that go forth hungry in the morning and return with full belly at dusk.” Birds do not store food or drink, yet they are active in seeking for their provision as they start their search in the morning and come back at dusk with what Allah provided them. This is actually a natural disposition that matches with life’s movement. Had they had what suffices them to the end of time, they would not have stopped seeking for provision.

Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) used to teach his companions the true meaning of utilizing of means in all matters; he prohibited them from reliance without making use of means, since it causes harm, not benefit. At that point, we can put it “we are sinful and unfair if we do not utilize the means of progress and advancement.” Our religion is that of knowledge, progress, civilization and beauty. It is a religion that brings forth benefit for all mankind. It is narrated that a man said: “O Messenger of Allah! Shall I tie it and rely (upon Allah), or leave it loose and rely (upon Allah)?” He said: “Tie it and rely (upon Allah).” This means that tying the camel is a means to protect it from being stolen or lost.

O Allah! Guide us to what realizes the essence of our religion, the advancement of our people and the progress of our country!

Rights of Parents and Relatives

All praise is due to Allah, the Lord of all worlds, Who says in His Ever Glorious Book, “Your Lord has commanded that you should worship none but Him, and that you be kind to your parents. If either or both of them reach old age with you, say no word that shows impatience with them, and do not be harsh with them, but speak to them respectfully, and lower your wing in humility towards them in kindness and say, ‘Lord, have mercy on them, just as they cared for me when I was little.’” I bear witness that there is no god but Allah, and that Muhammad is His Servant and Messenger. May Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him, his Household, Companions and upon those who follow their path to the Day of Judgment.

Islam has come with a moderate message that calls for all noble ethics, fosters every moral value, guides to the righteous conduct, and turns values and ideals into a way of life. This way is meant to adjust the balance of interactions among people through promoting truth, justice, compassion, love and humanness. Therefore, the Almighty Allah says “Allah commands justice, doing good, and generosity towards relatives and He forbids what is shameful, blameworthy, and oppressive. He teaches you, so that you may take heed.”

Among the manifestations of the greatness of Islamic Shari’ah is the stipulation of the rules, regulations, and rights to deal with parents and relatives. Parents are the ones who deserve the best respect, appreciation, and care. In His Glorious Book, the Almighty Allah orders us to be kind and grateful to our parents. He, Most High, mentions together, the command to worship Him alone and the command to be kind to our parents, when He says, “Worship Allah; join nothing with Him. Be good to your parents.” He, Glory be to him, commanded us to thank Him for His grace and in the same context, He commanded us to thank parents due to the greatness of their position and status. Ibn Abbas said, “Three verses were revealed in conjunction with three others. One will not be accepted without its counterpart. Among these is the saying of the Almighty, ‘Be grateful to me and your parents.’ Whoever is grateful to Allah and is not grateful to his parents, it will not be accepted from him.”

Islam has raised the status of parents, and ordered us to be grateful, kind and gentle with them.  Abdullah Ibn Amr reported that, “A man came to the Prophet (PBUH) asking his permission to go out for Jihad. The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) asked him, “Are your parents alive?” He replied, ‘Yes.’ The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) then said to him, “Then your Jihad would be with them (i.e. in looking after them and being at their service).

The two daughters of the righteous man mentioned in the story of Prophet Moses (PBUH) have set the best example in gratefulness and good care. Their father was an old man who could not carry out his work. Therefore, they did his work instead, without any resentment. The Qur’an reads: “When he arrived at Midian’s waters, he found a group of men watering [their flocks], and beside them two women keeping their flocks back, so he said, ‘What is the matter with you two?’ They said, ‘We cannot water [our flocks] until the shepherds take their sheep away: our father is a very old man.’”

Jabir Ibn Abdullah reported that a man said: “O Messenger of Allah, I have wealth and a son, and my father wants to take all my wealth.” The Messenger of Allah said: “You and your wealth belong to your father.”

We have a good example in the conduct of Fatima, daughter of the Prophet (PBUH), in her courtship, respect, and kindness to her father. Whenever, he (PBUH) entered a place where she is sitting, she used to stand up, kiss him, leave her seat for him and kindly treat him, due to her deep reverence for him.

Islam orders us to show respect to parents, and not to hurt them. The Almighty Allah says, “If either or both of them reach old age with you, say no word that shows impatience with them, and do not be harsh with them, but speak to them respectfully.” Allah forbids saying any word that would reveal resentment to parents, which means that it is more strictly forbidden to cause harm to them or offend them in any way. Abu Huraira once advised a man on how to be grateful to his father saying, “Do not walk in front of your father; do not sit down before him; do not call him with name without a title; do not cause someone to insult him.” The Prophet (PBUH) said: “It is one of the greatest sins that a man should curse his parents.” It was asked (by the people), “O Allah’s Messenger (PBUH)! How does a man curse his parents?” The Prophet (PBUH) said, “The man abuses the father of another man and the latter abuses the father of the former and abuses his mother.”

Islam commands one to be kind to his parents even if they are not Muslims. The Almighty Allah says, “If they strive to make you associate with Me anything about which you have no knowledge, then do not obey them. Yet keep their company in this life according to what is right.” This was what happened with Prophet Abraham regarding his father, as the Qur’an tells us, “Mention too, in the Quran, the story of Abraham. He was a man of truth, a prophet. He said to his father, ‘Father, why do you worship something that can neither hear nor see nor benefit you in any way? Father, knowledge that has not reached you has come to me, so follow me: I will guide you to an even path. Father, do not worship Satan- Satan has rebelled against the Lord of Mercy. Father, I fear that a punishment from the Lord of Mercy may afflict you and that you may become Satan’s companion [in Hell].’”

Also, Asmaa the daughter of Abu Baker reported, “My mother came to me during the lifetime of Allah’s Messenger (PBUH) and she was a pagan. I said to Allah’s Messenger, “My mother has come to me and she desires to receive a reward from me, shall I keep good relations with her?” The Prophet (PBUH) said, “Yes, keep good relation with her.”

Gratefulness to one’s parents has great implications and benefits that one can acquire in this life and the Hereafter, including the pleasure of Allah. The Prophet (PBUH) said, “Allah’s pleasure results from the parent’s pleasure, and Allah’s displeasure results from the parent’s displeasure.” It is also one of the reasons of alleviating hardship; this is proved by the Hadith of the Prophet (PBUH) wherein he stated ” While three men were walking, It started raining and they took shelter (refuge) in a cave in a mountain. A big rock rolled down from the mountain and closed the mouth of the cave. They said to each other, “Think of good deeds which you did for Allah’s sake only, and invoke Allah by giving reference to those deeds so that He may remove this rock from you.” One of them said, ‘O Allah! I had old parents and small children and I used to graze the sheep for them. On my return to them in the evening, I used to milk (the sheep) and start providing my parents first of all before my children. One day I was delayed and came late at night and found my parents sleeping. I milked (the sheep) as usual and stood by their heads. I hated to wake them up and disliked to give milk to my children before them, although my children were weeping (because of hunger) at my feet till the day dawned. O Allah! If I did this for Your sake only, kindly remove the rock so that we could see the sky through it.’ So, Allah removed the rock a little and they saw the sky.” So, his good behavior towards his parents was a means to alleviate the hardship they were in.

Also, the list of the virtues of righteousness to parents includes that a person’s offspring would consequently be dutiful to him. Allah, Most High, awarded our master Prophet Abraham (PBUH) for his good behavior when talking to his disbelieving father with granting him our master Ishmael (PBUH) who was righteous to him. The Quran records this for us, “And when he reached with him [the age of] exertion, he said, “O my son, indeed I have seen in a dream that I [must] sacrifice you, so see what you think.” He said, “O my father, do as you are commanded. You will find me, if Allah wills, of the steadfast.”

Being righteous to parents is also a means to lead the Muslim to Paradise. A man once came to the Prophet (PBUH) asking him for performing Jihad saying “O Messenger of Allah! I want to go out and fight (in Jihad) and I have come to ask your advice.” He said: “Do you have a mother?” He said: “Yes.” He said: “Then stay with her, for Paradise is beneath her feet.” He (PBUH) is also reported to have said, “The father is the middle door of Paradise (i.e. the best way to Paradise), so it is up to you whether you take advantage of it or not.” In the same connection, it is reported that Ibn ‘Umar once said to a man, ‘Do you wish to separate yourself from the Fire? Would you like to enter Paradise?’ ‘By Allah, yes!’ I replied. He asked, ‘Are your parents still alive?’ I replied, ‘My mother is.’ He said, ‘By Allah, if you speak gently to her and feed her, then you will enter the Garden as long as you avoid the major wrong actions.'”

Yet, we stress that whatever man does for his parents from the kinds of righteousness, he will not repay their debts. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: “No son can repay (the kindness shown by his father) unless he finds him a slave and buys him and emancipates him.”

With that said, I ask Allah to forgive me and you

All praise is due to Allah, Lord of the Worlds; I bear witness that there is no god but Allah; and I bear witness that our master Prophet Muhammad is His slave and Messenger; may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him, his family, companions and whoever follows their guidance to the Day of Judgment.

Muslim brothers,

Just as Islam recommends us to do good to our parents, it also directs us to maintain the ties of our kinship – man’s relatives. It further tells that they have dues rights. Allah, Most High, says: “But those of [blood] relationship are more entitled [to inheritance] in the decree of Allah.” Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: ” Verily Allah created the universe and when He had finished that, ties of relationship came forward and said This is the place for him who seeks refuge from severing (of blood-relationship). He said: Yes. Are you not satisfied that I should keep relationship with one who joins your ties of relationship and sever it with one who severs your (ties of relationship)? They (the ties of blood) said: Certainly so. Thereupon He said: Well, that is how things are for you. Allah’s Messenger (PBUH) then said: Recite if you like:” But if you turn away you are sure to make mischief in the land and cut off the ties of kinship. Those it is whom Allah has cursed, so He has made them deaf and blinded their eyes. Do they not reflect on the Qur’an? Or, are there locks on their hearts?”

He (PBUH) also reports Allah as having said: “I am the Merciful. I have created ties of kinship and derive a name for it from My Name. If anyone maintains ties of kinship, I maintain connection with him, and I shall cut off anyone who cuts them off.'”

Maintaining ties of kinship is fulfilled through visiting relatives, checking up on them and supporting them. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: “Giving charity to a poor person is charity, and (giving) to a relative is two things, charity and upholding the ties of kinship.” It is also maintained by answering their invitations, visiting he who is sick from them and escorting their funerals to graves.

Allah, Most High, clearly stated that maintaining of ties of kinship blesses one’s age and provision. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said, “He who is desirous that his means of sustenance should be expanded for him or his age may be lengthened, should join the tie of relationship.” He (PBUH) also stated that maintaining ties of kinship is a means to forgiveness of sins. A man came to the Prophet (PBUH) and said: “O Messenger of Allah! I have been afflicted by a tremendous sin. Is there any repentance for me?” He said: “Do you have your mother?” The man said: “No.” He said: “Do you have any maternal aunts?” The man said: “Yes.” He said: “Then be dutiful to them.”

So man should beware cutting of ties of kinship; he should not respond to the bad deed with a bad deed; rather, he should be tolerant. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: ” The person who perfectly maintains the ties of kinship is not the one who does it because he gets recompensed by his relatives (for being kind and good to them), but the one who truly maintains the bonds of kinship is the one who persists in doing so even though the latter has severed the ties of kinship with him”. It is also narrated that a man once said to him (PBUH): “I have relatives with whom I try to keep the ties of relationship but they sever relations with me; and whom I treat kindly but they treat me badly, I am gentle with them but they are rough to me.” He (PBUH) replied, “If you are as you say, it is as if you are feeding them hot ashes, and you will be with a supporter against them from Allah as long as you continue to do so”.

Islam bans cutting off the ties of kinship and warns against its bad consequences in the worldly life and the hereafter. He (PBUH) said: “There is no wrong action which Allah is swifter to punish in this world – in addition to the punishment which He has stored up for the wrongdoer in the Next World – than cutting off ties of kinship and injustice” and “The one who severs the ties of kinship will not enter Paradise.”

So, let’s for God’s sake be dutiful to our fathers and mothers; let’s maintain our ties of kinship and do good to all people.

O Allah! Guide us to be righteous with our parents, to maintain our ties of kinship, protect our people and make people secure and safe!

Protection of Public Affairs and Interests

All praise is due to Allah, the Lord of all worlds, Who says in His Ever Glorious Book, “Help one another to do what is right and good; do not help one another towards sin and hostility. Be mindful of Allah, for His punishment is severe.” I bear witness that there is no god but Allah, and that Muhammad is His Servant and Messenger. May Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him, his Household, Companions and upon those who follow their path to the Day of Judgment.

Islam has built a real state, laid down its foundations, established its components, urged us to preserve it, and made the protection of its public interests a common responsibility among all its members. The more those members become aware of the significance of the public interest, the more they will cooperate to preserve it. In this way, the community becomes strong and coherent, as the Prophet (PBUH) said, “The relationship of the believer with another believer is like (the bricks of) a building, each strengthens the other. (The Prophet (PBUH) illustrated this by interlacing the fingers of both his hands.)” He (PBUH) also said, “The believers in their mutual kindness, compassion and sympathy are just like one body. When one of the limbs suffers, the whole body responds to it with wakefulness and fever.”

Undoubtedly, one of the most important elements of preserving public affairs is to give preference to the public interest that benefits all people over the narrow private interest that only avails certain individuals. This value aims at purifying the human soul from evils of selfishness. The public interest includes all material and moral benefits that revive the whole society, achieves goodness for all humans, and protects them from evil. Such values bring about security, stability and integrity of lands. Moreover, achieving the welfare of the whole society is the core of adopting jurisprudence of priorities.

The Holy Qur’an affirmed the necessity of preserving the public interest and preferring it to the private one. This is the approach of all the Prophets. The Almighty Allah did not send a Prophet but to bring happiness for his people, without any financial compensation or worldly benefit. Prophet Noah (PBUH) said, “My people, I ask no reward for it from you; my reward comes only from Allah. I will not drive away the faithful: they are sure to meet their Lord. I can see you are foolish.” The Almighty Allah also reported the statement of Prophet Hud (PBUH), saying, “I ask no reward from you, my people; my reward comes only from Him who created me. Why do you not use your reason?” Also, Prophet Su’aib (PBUH) said, “I only want to put things right as far as I can. I cannot succeed without Allah’s help: I trust in Him, and always turn to Him.”

The provisions of the moderate Shari’ah came in accordance with reason. Thus, it called for whatever achieves the public interest of all citizens of the state, including: meeting the necessary needs of society, and caring for the circumstances of the real world. Thus, if the society is in need for building hospitals for the sick people, then this is the priority. If the society needs schools, their maintenance, equipment, helping students, then this is the priority. If however, there is a need for facilitating marriage for the needy young people, the payment of debts, and then this is the priority, since the elimination of people’s  needs is a religious and national duty. The Prophet (PBUH) says, “He is not a believer whose stomach is filled while the neighbor to his side goes hungry, and he knows).
Another public interest is the preservation of public property. This property is shared by all citizens, and the sanctity of such public ownership is more demanding than the sanctity of private one, due to the multiple owners. This is why Islam warned against any violation of this ownership. The Almighty Allah says, “Anyone who dishonestly takes something, from the battle gains, will carry it with him on the Day of Resurrection, when each soul will be fully repaid for what it has done: no one will be wronged.” Public property is an ownership for all people, and not for a specific group. Those responsible for it are just the trustees to save, collect, and spend it, but they do not own it personally. This is why, it is not permissible for one to abuse it, or consume it, otherwise, it would be an act of treason and injustice.

Islam also ordered the preservation of public facilities, such as houses of worship, schools, hospitals, gardens, etc., as they belong to all citizens, and avail them all. Islam severely warned against abusing, wasting or spoiling these facilities in any way, as the Almighty Allah says, “And do not cause corruption in lands after it has been set in order.” This is to refute the misconception that one can misuse the public domain in any way he wants, on the pretext that he owns it. This is a misunderstanding. What we are obliged to do is to preserve and protect public facilities because they do not belong to a specific individual or a group in a given time; it is all of people, and for future generations.

These public interests include: preserving roads and giving them their due right. The Prophet (PBUH) said: “Avoid sitting by the road side.” The people then said, ‘O Allah‘s Messenger (PBUH), we cannot do without those meeting places in which we converse” So he said, “Well, if you insist (on that) give the road its due rights.” They asked, ‘What are the road’s due rights?’ He replied, “Lowering your gaze, abstaining from anything offensive, returning salutations, enjoining the right (Ma’ruf) and forbidding from evil deeds (Munkar).” He (PBUH) also said, “Faith has over seventy branches or over sixty branches, the most excellent of which is the declaration that there is no god but Allah, and the humblest of which is the, removal of what is injurious from the path: and modesty is the branch of faith.”

These public interests also include performing military service, which is one of the most important duties performed by man towards his religion and homeland; it is proof of one’s loyalty, sincerity and love to his country. Homeland is not less important than religion, honor, or properties. Performing this national military service instills in one’s heart the meanings of stronghood, greatness, and noble values ​​cherished by our true religion of Islam. The Prophet (PBUH) said, “Faith has over seventy branches or over sixty branches, the most excellent of which is the declaration that there is no god but Allah, and the humblest of which is the, removal of what is injurious from the path: and modesty is the branch of faith.”

Among the public interests that should be observed is to preserve the agreements between the home country and other States, organizations or institutions. Any jurisprudential Fatwa or advocacy measure must be an institutional.  Whoever speaks in such matters should take into consideration all societal, national and international circumstances related to the subject matter, so as to avoid hasty and individual opinions that contradict the reality, or oppose the international laws, treaties and conventions.

Allah, the Almighty, ordered us to keep our promises; He, Most High, says: “O you who believe! Fulfill your contracts.” This verse refers to all kind of contracts, promises and obligations to which man should adhere. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: “Muslims will be held to their conditions, except the conditions that make the lawful unlawful, or the unlawful lawful.”

That is why the Prophet (PBUH), by virtue of the terms and conditions of Al-Hudaybiyah Treaty with the disbelievers of Quraysh, ordered Abu Basir to go back to Mecca, even though he knew that this companion might be hurt. He (PBUH) did so as a result of his covenant with Qurays, which is a kind of keeping promises and trusts on one hand, and fulfilling contracts, on the other. It has also to do with giving precedence of the public interest to the individual one.

Discussion of public issues, without being aware of them, is so dangerous that it might undermine the state and its foundations, since it destroys its security and stability, and makes it vulnerable to mockery. How many are those who corrupt in the earth! Allah, Most High, orders us to consult those with expertise. Allah, Most High, says: ” And when there comes to them information about [public] security or fear, they spread it around. But if they had referred it back to the Messenger or to those of authority among them, then the ones who [can] draw correct conclusions from it would have known about it. And if not for the favor of Allah upon you and His mercy, you would have followed Satan, except for a few.”

With that said, I ask Allah to forgive me and you

All praise is due to Allah, Lord of the Worlds; I bear witness that there is no god but Allah; and I bear witness that our master Prophet Muhammad is His servant and Messenger; may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him, his family, companions and whoever follows their guidance to the Day of Judgment.

Muslim brothers,

The concept of public interests surpasses individuals’ limited interests. For this reason, it is not left to all people to engage in; rather, it is the duty of specialized who are fully aware of the importance of the national security tasks entrusted to them including people’s life and interests, states’ property along with their political, social, security and scientific issues. Scholars believe that if a Mujtahid (person who makes personal reasoning) is right, he will have twofold reward, and if he is wrong, he will have just one reward. This indicates that if someone practices ijtihad even though he is not entitled to do so, he will be sinful for issuing fatwas without knowledge even if his opinion is correct; otherwise the sin of his mistake will be twofold, for issuing fatwas without well-established knowledge and for the mistake he made. Allah, Most High, says: “Ask people of knowledge if you know not.” Ahl Al-Dhikr are those who are specialized in particular fields of knowledge.

For this reason, it is prohibited to issue fatwas with no knowledge or Sharia proof. In this regard, Allah, the Almighty, says: “Then who is more unjust than one who invents a lie about Allah to mislead the people by [something] other than knowledge? Indeed, Allah does not guide the wrongdoing people” and “And do not say about what your tongues assert of untruth, “This is lawful and this is unlawful,” to invent falsehood about Allah. Indeed, those who invent falsehood about Allah will not succeed.” Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: “If anyone advises his brother, knowing that guidance lies in another direction, he has deceived him.” Senior companions and followers used not to issue fatwas, as they were fully aware of its enormity. Abu Bakr (Allah be pleased with him) said: “What sky would cover me and what land would shelter me if I explained the Book of Allah without knowledge.” Al-Sha’bi was once asked about a question, whereupon he said: “I do not know it.” His students thus said to him: “we felt embarrassed for your sake,” whereupon he replied, “the angels did not feel embarrassed when they said to Allah, ‘we had no knowledge except that which you taught us.’ ‘Abd Al-Rahman Ibn Abi Layla is reported to have said: “I met 120 companions from Al-Ansar who, if asked a question, used to circulate the question among them until it goes back to the first one to whom it was offered first.

Protection of the public interests is a common duty; each of us should protect the society according to his position and ability. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: “Surely! Everyone of you is a guardian and is responsible for his charges: The Imam (ruler) of the people is a guardian and is responsible for his subjects; a man is the guardian of his family (household) and is responsible for his subjects; a woman is the guardian of her husband’s home and of his children and is responsible for them; and the slave of a man is a guardian of his master’s property and is responsible for it. Surely, every one of you is a guardian and responsible for his charges.”

Many people might seriously consider the danger resulting from their speech or writings or what they share on the social networks. They might even view it a form of entertainment, not realizing that making and spreading rumors among people are means of destruction that are used by the evildoers in their conflicts with the righteous. Thus, you see the members of the supposed-to-be one nation suspecting and accusing one another od betrayal. For this Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: “It is enough of a lie for a man to narrate all what he hears.”

If man’s narration to all what hears is some kind of a lie for which he will be punished, how would the punishment for he who speaks about matters he did not see or hear or know about? How many false lies spread here and there, to the extent that they serve as the reasons behind the punishment of their mongers on the Day of Judgment! Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) says: “A slave (of Allah) may utter a word which pleases Allah without giving it much importance, and because of that Allah will raise him to degrees (of reward): a slave (of Allah) may utter a word (carelessly) which displeases Allah without thinking of its gravity and because of that he will be thrown into the Hell-Fire.” This makes it necessary to be cautious, aware, and rational and not to issue fatwas without knowledge.

Allah, Most High, orders us to carefully investigate matters and not to follow the corruptors. He, the Almighty, says: “O you who have believed, if there comes to you a disobedient one with information, investigate, lest you harm a people out of ignorance and become, over what you have done, regretful.” Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: “Deliberateness is from Allah, and haste is from the Satan” and “There is hesitation in everything except in the actions of the next world.”

We are in dire need to be fully aware of the importance of the public opinion issues, to give precedence of the public interest and to fully realize the conspiracies plotted against us. So, let’s take admonition from other countries and not to fall prey to the conspiracies made by the enemies of religion and nation; let’s be united and firmly adhering to the truth, so that we would not fall prey to the traps of those waiting for destroying us; let’s spread trust among us and cooperate to do good whose effect will shower us all.

O Allah! Help us to perform the duties of our nations, keep our peoples, our rulers, army and police safe. O Allah! Make our beloved Egypt and all the world’s countries safe, secure and prosperous.

Islam as a Conduct and Behavior “Examples from the Life of the Tabi‘oun”

All praise is due to Allah, the Lord of all worlds, Who says in His Ever Glorious Book, “Those who came after them say, ‘Lord, forgive us our sins and the sins of our brothers who believed before us, and leave no malice in our hearts towards those who believe. Lord, You are truly compassionate and merciful.” I bear witness that there is no god but Allah, and that Muhammad is His Servant and Messenger. May Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him, his Household, Companions and upon those who follow their path to the Day of Judgment.

The Almighty Allah chooses from among his servants those who devote themselves to serve His Religion. The Prophet (PBUH) told us that the best of the Muslims community are the Companions, then their followers, then their successors. Companion Abdullah Ibn Mas‘oud said: “The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “My generation is the best people, then those next to them, then those next to them…” They gained this status as they carried knowledge, and protected it against the extremism and ignorance. Allah has praised those peopel and mentioned them in the same category of the Messenger’s Companions promising them paradise when he, The Almighty Allah said, “Allah will be well pleased with the first emigrants and helpers and those who followed them in good deeds, and they will be well pleased with Him: He has prepared Gardens graced with flowing streams for them, there to remain for ever. That is the supreme triumph.”

The Tabi‘oun (followers of the Companions) are the closest generation to the Prophet, as they are second generation next to the Companions, and the Followers of the Tabi‘oun are the next generation to the Tabi’oun (may Allah be pleased with them all). May Allah have Mercy with Imam al-Busairy who said:

And all of them obtained from (bounties of) The Messenger of Allah,

(Like) a handful (of water) from the ocean or a sip from continuous rains.

The Tabi’oun accompanied the Companions and learned from them, and the Companions attested to their virtues and knowledge. For example, Abdullah Ibn Umar witnessed in favor of Saeed Ibn Al-Musayyib saying, “By Allah, he is a Mufti.” He also said, “Ask Saeed Ibn al-Musayyib for he has learned from the Righteous people.”  Saeed Ibn al- Musayyib used to give Fatwas in the Presence of the Companions. Ataa’ Ibn Abi Rabah used to give Fatwas for the People of Mecca after the death of the great scholar for the Muslim Ummah, Abdullah Ibn Abbas.  When Ibn ‘Umar arrived in Mecca, and peole gathered to ask him he commented, “Do you collect your questions to ask me, while you have Ataa’ Ibn Rabah amongst you?”

The Tabi’oun were known for the sincerity of their love for the Messenger of Allah (PBUH). For example, Al-Hasan Al-Basri whenever he reported the Hadith of the “the trunk of date that moaned off in love for the Prophet”, he used to weep and say: O servants of Allah, a piece of wood moaned out of love for the Prophet (PBUH); you are more deserving to yearn for meeting him (PBUH).”

Also, Imam Malik once was asked:  When did you learn of Ayoub al-Sukhtiani? He said: He performed Hajj twice, and I used to see him without hearing him. Notably, when he would mention the name of the Prophet (PBUH) he used to weep. Their reverence of the Prophet (PBUH) was so great that they never talked about him except in the best way and at their best cnditions. Abu Salamah Al-Khuza’i said:  When Imam Malik Ibn Anas used to report the Ahadeeth pf the Prophet (PBUH) he would make Wudu’, put on his best clothes, and comb his beard. He was asked about that, and he replied: I pay reverence to the Ahadeeth of the Messenger of Allah (PBUH).

There were some Tabi’oun whom the Prophet (PBUH) praised like Oways Al-Qarani, who was so kind to his mother, and the Prophet (PBUH) told his Companions that his supplications are answered by Allah. Umar Ibn Al-Khattab said: I heard the Messenger of Allah saying, “The best among Tabi‘oun is a man called Uways Ibn Amir…He had been suffering from leprosy. His treatment with his mother would have been very kind. Ask him to beg forgiveness for you (from Allah).” When Umar Ibn Al-Khattab met him, he asked him to ask forgiveness from Allah for him (Umar).

The Tabi‘oun learned from the Companions of the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) the geniune meaning of the religion. Once, Imam Hassan Al-Basri was asked: Are you a believer? He replied: “Belief is of two kinds. If you are asking me about belief in Allah, His Angels, Scriptures, Messengers, Paradise, and resurrection, then I’m a believer. But if you ask me about the words of the Almighty Allah, “True believers are those whose hearts tremble with awe when Allah is mentioned, whose faith increases when His revelations are recited to them,” then I do not know whether or not I’m one of them. Al-Bayhaqi commented: Al-Hassan did not doubt his basic belief. Rather, he doubted the perfection of his belief for which Allah has promised Paradise in his saying, “They have high standing with their Lord, forgiveness, and generous provision.”

They also realized the value of facilitation and applied in their life. Sufyan Al-Thawry said: “In our view, knowledge entails [issuing] legal concessions (rukhsah). As for being strict, anyone can do that.”Al-Azraq Ibn Qays also said:  Once, we were at Al-Ahwaz. Abu Barza al-Aslami was praying, but his horse run away. He stopped his prayer to catch the horse and then came to make up his prayer. A man said, “Look to that man who stopped his prayer for the sake of his horse!” When Abu Barza finished his prayer, he said, “My house is so far; and if I lost my horse shall never return home.” He learned that from the Prophet (PBUH) who used to choose the easier option whenever he was given an option between two things as long as the easier one was not sinful. Moreover, he (PBUH) said, “Make things easy and do not make them difficult, cheer the people up by conveying glad tidings to them and do not repulse (them).” He (PBUH) also said, “Whenever forbearance is added to something, it adorns it; and whenever it is withdrawn from something, it leaves it defective.”

They also practically applied the values of mercy, solidarity and feeling with others in their life. Ali Ibn Al-Hussein Ibn Ali (Allah be pleased with him) used to secretly give out charity to the poor, with nobody noticed that. When he died, they lost he who used to provide them with money. When performing death’s ritual ablution for him, they found the signs of carrying sacks to widows’ and orphans’ houses, thus they realized that he was the person who used to came to them at night with provision. It is said that he was in charge of 100 of the Medina’s houses, as he used to provide them with their provision.

Showing mercy to each other was not confined to Muslims only, but rather extended to non-Muslims also. ‘Umar Ibn Abd Al-Aziz (Allah be pleased with him) once wrote to his ruler over Basra, “Search for the people with whom we covenants who became aged, week or unable to get his own living and make for him a due share from the treasury house.” In doing so, he followed the example of our master ‘Umar Ibn Al-Khattab (Allah be pleased with him) who, upon seeing a man from the People of the Book asking people for charity, said, “I swear to Allah, we have not treated this man fairly if we take Jiziya from him while young and leave him now.” So, he (Allah be pleased with him) imposed for him a due share from the treasury house. The same also was done by Khalid Ibn Al-Walid (Allah be pleased with him) who, upon concluding the treaty with the people of Hira, said: “I decreed that whenever one of their aged became unable to work or is afflicted with a disease or turns poor after richness that he should have a due share from the Muslim treasury house.” In truth, in doing so, they all followed the example of the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) and applied the correct form of religion. Allah, Most High, says: ” Allah does not forbid you from those who do not fight you because of religion and do not expel you from your homes – from being righteous toward them and acting justly toward them. Indeed, Allah loves those who act justly.”

Mercy, furthermore, is not confined to man only, but rather extended that to include animals, birds, etc. Umar Ibn Abd Al-Aziz once wrote to his ruler over Egypt recommending him to show mercy to camels, saying: “I was told that there are camels in Egypt that are forced to carry 1000 pounds. So, upon receiving my book, do not load them with more than 600 pounds.” He also recommended that they should be shown mercy, and not to be humiliated or beaten. He has actually learnt this from the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) who once recommended his companions saying: “Don’t you fear Allah about this beast which Allah has given in your possession. It has complained to me that you keep it hungry and load it heavily which fatigues it.”

With that said, I ask Allah to forgive me and you

All praise is due to Allah, Lord of the Worlds; I bear witness that there is no god but Allah; and I bear witness that our master Prophet Muhammad is His slave and Messenger; may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him, his family, companions and whoever follows their guidance to the Day of Judgment.

Muslim brothers,

One of the most distinctive characters of the followers is “Tolerance with people and dealing with them kindly”. They were very lenient while dealing with people. Qatada is reported to have said: “We have got into the house of Al-Hassan al-Basari in a visit; he was asleep. Beside his head, there was a basket full of bread and fruit. So, we pulled it and started eating. He then got up, and was happy. He smiled and recited the Saying of Allah, Most High, “… or [from the house] of your friend. There is no blame upon you whether you eat together or separately.” In the same connection, Jarir Ibn Hazem (Allah be pleased with him) said: “We paid a visit to Al-Hassan. We stayed therein until it was the midday. His son then came and said, ‘let the old man take some rest, for you have caused him a lot of troubles,’ whereupon Al-Hassan said, “Leave them, for I swear by Allah there is nothing more beloved to me than seeing them.”

The list of their characters includes also self-denial, appreciation of and respect for scholars and showcasing how Islam is deeply entrenched in their souls. This may actually be a lesson to those who talk about the matters of religion, with no knowledge, thus he is astray and gets others astray. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: ” Allah does not take away the knowledge, by taking it away from (the hearts of) the people, but takes it away by the death of the religious learned men till when none of the (religious learned men) remains, people will take as their leaders ignorant persons who when consulted will give their verdict without knowledge. So they will go astray and will lead the people astray.”

The followers were good examples for the Imams who came after them. Abu Ja’far Al-Mansour once told Imam Malik Ibn Anas (Allah be pleased with him) that he intended to approve his Al-Muwatta’ as the highest authority ever in the religious matters throughout the Islamic World, affirming: “I intended to command my rulers to copy your books and to send one copy to every Muslim province so that they would act upon it, not any source else; because I firmly believe that the origin of knowledge is what has been narrated in the Medina of the Messenger of Allah (PBUH).” Imam Malik then replied: “Please, don’t do this, o Commander of the Believers, for people had previously been in contact with other narrations and sayings; every people have adopted and acted upon what has previously reached them. So, in case you would force them to adhere to one source, this would impose great difficulty upon them. So, let them act upon what each has previously chosen for himself.” Al-Mansour then said: “I take my oath! Had you obeyed me, I would have commanded them to do so.”

The followers were also very modest and of great ability to understand the matters of the Sharia. The incident of Imam Al-Shafi’ with his student Yunus ibn Abd Al-Ala is a case in point. It is narrated that one day Yunus was angry with his teacher Al-Shafi’. When the night fell, Yunus heard some nocks at the door. He asked, “Who is that?” Al-Shafi’ replied, “Muhammad Ibn Idris.” Yunus said that he thought of any person with the name of Muhammad Ibn Idris but not Al-Shafi’. He then opened the door and found Imam Al-Shafi’ before him, saying: “O Yunus! We agree on hundreds of topics and are separated because of one! O Yunus! Don’t try to be victorious in all controversies, for sometimes gaining hearts is more important than gaining in a particular situation. O Yunus! Don’t destroy all the bridges you built, for one day you might be in need of them to go back. O Yunus, always hate the wrong, but do not hate the wrongdoer; keep way from acts of disobedience, but be tolerant and show mercy to the disobedient. O Yunus, criticize the speech, but show respect to the speaker, because our task is to eradicate the disease, not the ill.” May Allah have mercy upon Imam Al-Shafi’ who once said:

I love the righteous yet not of them me

That I will have them intercession for me

I hate their trade in acts of disobedience

Though both our goods are the same

Our honorable scholars followed this way and were thus the best example for us in carrying the trust of the religion of Islam, correctly understanding it, acting upon its morals and kindly delivering it to people with wisdom and good instruction.

O Allah! Make us from those who listen to speech and follow the best of it. Those are the ones Allah has guided, and those are people of understanding.