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Today's Reminder

September 30, 2020 | Safar 12, 1442

Living The Quran

The Iron
Al-Hadid (The Iron) Sura 57: Verses 25

"Assuredly We have sent Our Messengers with manifest truths, and We have sent down with them the Book and the Balance so that humankind may live by equity. And we have sent down iron, in which is stern might and benefits for humankind, so that God may mark out those who help God and His messengers, though they do not see Him. Surely God is All-Strong, All-Glorious with irresistible might."

Iron is perhaps the most important and necessary matter for technology. It is also our most elemental material, as it is the core of the earth. So, this verse may also be referring to the origins of the earth. In addition, iron is indispensably necessary to make weapons to fight in God's cause to uphold His Word, and to eradicate injustice.

From another point of view, this verse is very significant in assessing a sound society and government. The Messengers are the God-appointed leaders of humankind, who always guided them to the truth and led them in all aspects of life throughout human history. The Book is the compilation of knowledge, instructions, and laws essential to humankind's happiness in both worlds. The Balance is the criterion to attain what is right in belief, thinking, and action, and also to realize justice in human individual and social life. Iron symbolizes force or power in human social life. Without the Book, iron (force) destroys justice and brings about injustice. Without the Balance, iron misuses the Book according to its own benefits. Without iron, the Book and Balance are not sufficient to form a good society and government. Said Nursi remarks: "Principles of wisdom and laws of truth have no effect upon ordinary people unless the former are combined with the state's laws and the latter with power." (The Letters, "Seeds of the Truth," 2:306).

Compiled From:
"The Quran: Annotated Interpretation in Modern English" - Ali Unal, pp. 1113

From Issue: 567 [Read original issue]

Understanding The Prophet's Life

Hypothetical Matters

Prophet (peace be upon him) disliked being questioned about all hypothetical matters. In a Tradition narrated by Bukhari on the authority of Saad ibn Abi Waqqas, the Prophet is reported to have said: "The most sinful person among the Muslims is the one who asked about something which had not been prohibited, but was prohibited because of his asking." [Bukhari]

Reported by Abu Thalabah al-Khushani that the Prophet said: "God has set boundaries, so do not transgress them; He kept silent on certain things out of mercy for you rather than forgetfulness, do not ask about them." [Daraqutni] Thus, Ibn Abbas said: "I have not seen better than Muhammad's Companions, they only asked him fifteen questions, all of which are [mentioned] in the Quran." [Qurtubi]

Compiled From:
"Treatise on Maqasid Al-Shariah" - Ibn Ashur, pp. 218, 219

From Issue: 952 [Read original issue]

Blindspot!

First Step to Repentance

The soul wrongs and harms itself. One can imagine someone, for example, wronging someone else for the sake of some worldly benefit - this is imaginable and witnessed, although it is obviously not proper. However, it does not make any sense for a person to harm and wrong his own soul. This means that he is working against his own good; he is doing something that is of direct harm and no true benefit to his soul. This is what happens over and over again to the majority of mankind. This demonstrates the depths of misguidance that mankind can reach.

The main way a person harms his own soul is by disobeying Allah, His creator, who, out of His mercy, sent him guidance to lead him to the path of true bliss and happiness. In reality, a human has no right to wrong himself. Hence, one of the first steps along the road to repentance and purifying one's soul is the recognition that one has done wrong to his soul. He must repent to Allah for the wrong that he has done to his own self as it is only Allah who can forgive him for what he has done.

Compiled From:
"Purification of the Soul: Concept, Process and Means" - Jamaal al-Din M. Zarabozo, pp. 63-65

From Issue: 630 [Read original issue]