Living by It. One lesson a day…

… from Quran. Changing slowly, but surely.

Lesson 30 – Petra And Rome Aren’t That Great If You Really Think About It! April 3, 2010

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Rabi Al-Sani 20, 1431

“Tell these people who are refusing to believe, that if they desist, they will be forgiven whatever happened earlier. And if they persist then their fate will be the same as has been the tradition in the past.”

Surah Al-Anfal (Surah 8), verse 38

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It’s interesting that the word “believer” is used in places that are followed by clear commands. The words “refusing to believe” mean that all of us are included and not just people of other faiths. That way we, the Muslims “refusing to believe”, are being addressed the same way as an atheist, an agnostic, a Christian, a Jew, a Hindu is. It seems as if we’re being stripped of the honor we have of being Muslims and just heed to Allah’s words here.

Now, can you ever expect to rise in a multinational company if you mess up a huge international deal? No. Can you ever regain a partner’s trust if you’ve committed zina after promising fidelity? Hardly so. Can you survive a criminal prosecution if you’ve been caught executing a robbery? No, unless there’s some hanky panky involved that is so prevalent today. Can you stop the examiner from getting your paper annulled if you’ve been strongly suspected of cheating? Rarely.

But with God, the rules change. All you gotta do is STOP, REPENT, OBEY and PASS ON the message of His Favors… and you have a clean record; you’ve found the stairway to heaven, you’ve found the gardens with free flowing drinks. Easy innit?

If, however, we continue to IGNORE and SIDELINE the holy words for whatever short-term goals we have, then God has been Kind enough to show us what He will Do: the epitome of evidence based learning. This is what He means. And this, this, this, this, this and this among so many others. I believe that all the mystical areas of the world, all the tourist sites really, are remnants of nations gone astray, nations that were astoundingly intelligent and established but stubbornly non-conformists.

So book yourself a ticket, visit Petra, visit the Coliseum of Rome, go to Mexico, fly to Moenjodaro and be flabbergasted! And then be thankful that you still have a chance to make the right choices and not have the “same fate as has been of the traditions in the past”.

 

Lesson 7 – But I Want To Hoard More!!! February 13, 2010

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Safar 28, 1431

“And when they are told: “Spend of that which Allah has provided to you for utilization.” Those who commit kufr (deny Him) say about those  who believe in Him: “Should we feed those whom Allah would feed if He so wished? Where are you besides being clearly in delusion?”.”

Surah Ya Seen (Surah 36), verse 47

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How many times has this argument been given already??  Why has God created evil if He’s pure? Why are there hungry people if God is a Provider? Why do people suffer if He is Merciful? Why isn’t everybody a believer if He is Powerful? Why do good things happen to bad people and bad things to good if He is Just?

To be honest, I don’t understand these discrepancies myself, but what I do know is, I don’t know anything, I don’t know His Wisdom, and I haven’t spent time researching things that Allah Says and Commands.

If I were to reflect just on this particular line though, I understand that I have to still feed the poor, the same poor people I suspect of scamming me, utilize the same money on them that I was thinking of spending on a dumb movie; I have to still provide my shoulder for somebody to cry on if the need be, while I feel lonely about my miseries; I have to still maintain my integrity even if I see nobody else does; I have to still maintain a sense of decorum as a girl even if see the standards stooping as low as they now do; and I have to trust Him for every word that I read.

May Allah guide me and make me stronger. I feel useless, powerless, frustrated, obstinate and hypocritical… and I need His help more than ever to come out of my delusions.

 

Lesson 3 – Graphic February 9, 2010

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“O you people who believe! Avoid suspicion in a majority of cases. In fact suspicion in some cases can be sin. And do not pry (or spy), and do not gossip about others behind their backs. Will any of you like that one eats his dead brother’s flesh? But you will detest that. And fear Allah. Indeed Allah Accepts repentance (of remorse), He is Merciful.”

Surah Al-Hijarat (Surah 49), verse 12

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Okay, so there are so many things to pick up from here… I’m going to keep this concise hopefully.

  • First of all, you are ordered of this, IF you believe. If you don’t, well you have less of an obligation, right? 😉
  • Then, notice the use of the words “majority of cases”… so fundos and self-righteous people who claim suspicion is just wrong and that you have to trust Him in all matters without using the neurons constituting your brain, well go ahead and smack them, if you like… because they are clearly misguiding you and they are encouraging you to retard/ restrict yourself to a place you know you’re uncomfortable with. I mean sure you want to say you want to have faith but you need a sense of slight command over your decisions (even though ultimately He is the Decider, but I digress…), and Allah HAS given you that leverage. So say, if you think the shopkeeper is giving you a refurbished product, if you think your kid is lying to you about something, if you think your spouse is upto no good, then you DO have the right to check things for yourself and be suspicious!
  • Then the next part is obvious. We’ve seen enough movies and we’ve experienced enough on our own to understand that excessive or unnecessary suspicion leads to chaos, feelings of worthlessness and paranaoia… You’re being unfair to the person when you’re suspecting wrong, right? Isn’t it great that it’s considered a sin then? So when you are not being suspicious, you are not hurting anybody and you’re not sinning… sounds like a good deal to me!
  • “Do not pry or spy”… Well FB, Twitter, myspace, Google all kinda put an end to that, right? I don’t know how to live my life without stalking people anymore! So the only way I find myself trying to apply this, is to not spy outside the virtual world. Kinda dumb, I know.
  • Ugh, gossiping behind backs? How do you even stop that? So many times it seems like it’s normal talk, or that you’re helping somebody out by letting them know what you know about the subject (one of shaitaan’s many, many ploys). Only thing I’ve figured out is I have to reduce the amount of talk that I think is enough to what is enough. This is a constant struggle, almost as if I feel I can never achieve it… but I’m not losing hope, ‘kay??
  • I find the next part so interesting. Allah presents a rhetoric and then He Answers it Himself! He Asks me if I’d like to eat my (a) DEAD – a thought I never have and I choose it to be that way (b) BROTHER’S – the same person who protects me or pretends to, or whatever, the one who bought snacks for me from his measly pocket money when we were younger, the one who makes me feel important around here (in his own weird ways, admittedly) (c) FLESH – okay ewww! Then He Says I will hate it if I had to eat it, I mean I know, but He is still telling me how I’d feel. I think it’s because with these two phrases, you get a more distinct picture about how badly it’s considered. The take home lesson for me is to shut it when I blurt it!
  • He is asking me to fear Him – because I don’t completely understand yet what He’s about. He is much much much more than I think I know. On a sidenote, fear isn’t a bad thing; an example you’ll be able to relate to is that of your strict teacher who helped you become what you are today, in some way or the other. Ms Fikree from St Joseph’s Convent was apparently that, and you all still love her, don’t you?
  • He is telling me repentance is the way out… Okay so that looks easy: Clean heart, ask for forgiveness, don’t do it again. Piece of cake! Really. The best part is you can perform this act more than once, in case you fall into shaitaan’s trap, and it’ll produce the same results with Him.
  • … and He is stating His quality of being Merciful… to drive home the point about repentance!