January 20, 2022 | Jumada II 16, 1443
Quest for the Truth
Al-Baqara (The Cow) Chapter 2: Verse 266 (partial)
"Thus does God expound for you the signs that you may think."
On numerous occasions the Quran invites people to investigate and explore the world around them, and to draw rational conclusions, not in the manner of blind imitators who follow and accept what others have said, but through intelligent analysis and judgement. While commenting on this and other similar passages in the Quran, Abu Zahrah observes that the Quran encourages rational enquiry into the world around us, and that 'this would not be possible without the freedom to express one's opinion and thought'. To this we may add the rider, that the Quran values rational endeavour accompanied by sincerity in the quest for truth and justice.
No intellectual enquiry may begin on the premise of denying the fundamental truth of monotheism (tawhid) and of the clear guidance which is enunciated in the divine revelation. Provided that these values are observed, rational enquiry and the quest for truth must be maintained even in the face of hostility from the masses. For these people may be uninformed, and may themselves be in need of enlightenment.
"Freedom of Expression in Islam" - Mohammad Hashim Kamali, p. 64
From Issue: 610 [Read original issue]
When we study the Prophet's (peace be upon him) life, we find him glorifying God and praising Him at every moment of his life. He would wake up before dawn, leaving his bed when the dark curtain of the night still covers everything. He then says: "Praise be to God who has returned my spirit to me, given me physical strength and permitted me to glorify Him." [Tirmidhi] Consider how he welcomes life, full of optimism: "Praise be to God who has returned my spirit to me." Life is a gift from God and we are able to do many good things in a day. The Prophet expresses his gratitude for his well-being. We may reflect long on the last part of this supplication, which mentions God's permission to glorify Him. That is an expression of complete devotion that words can hardly describe.
The Prophet's awareness of God's presence never left him for a moment, and He praised Him at every juncture and before every action. The Prophet is therefore the perfect role model for all believers. Some of us may wonder whether we have to repeat all these supplications all the time. Scholars rightly make clear that although they are all recommended, none is obligatory.
"Muhammad: His Character and Conduct" - Adil Salahi
From Issue: 957 [Read original issue]
You should understand the dynamic of inner participation well. For how is your heart seized by Truth?
- First, you come to know the truth.
- Second, you recognize and accept it as the truth and as relevant to your life.
- Third, you remember the truth, as much and as often as you can.
- Fourth, you absorb it until it soaks into the deepest recesses of your inner self.
The truth thus becomes an ever-alive state of consciousness, an enduring posture of the heart. Once a truth so permeates your inner world, it must pour out in the world of words and deeds.
It is also important to remember here that what you do outwardly, by your tongue and limbs, interacts with what you are inwardly. It is possible that words and deeds may be false witnesses to the state of inner self. But an inner state, like faith, must necessarily find expression in words and deeds, which, in turn, must help in engraving your knowledge in your consciousness and turn it into an abiding condition.
"Way to the Quran" - Khurram Murad
From Issue: 809 [Read original issue]