Today's Reminder

April 15, 2021 | Ramadan 3, 1442

Living The Quran

Al Isra (The Night Journey) - Chapter 17: Verse 106

"And (it is) a Quran that We have divided, that you may recite it unto mankind at intervals, and We have revealed it by (successive) revelations."

The Prophet's arrival signalled a new and exciting era in the history of Yathrib. Hitherto a small, insignificant agricultural settlement, Yathrib was suddenly wrested from the obscurity in which it had been shrouded. Not only did it become the centre of history in Arabia, but also the hub of a cosmological event of stupendous character. It became the focal point of Divine revelation.

More than anything, it was the sound of the Quran that transformed the whole atmosphere of the place, its every aspect and element, into a new and sublime reality. The Archangel Gabriel was a frequent visitor, descending with portions of the Quran, in response to the situation. For the Quran was not revealed in its entirety on one occasion, but gradually in portions.

Exegetes have described this special manner in which the Quran was revealed as Munajjamun (in portions). It was not revealed as former Scriptures were believed to have been, in the form of a complete book. The impact of the Quran was so great for this reason, that it interacted dynamically with people and events, every revelation being concerned with a concrete happening or event.

Compiled From:
"Sunshine At Madinah" - Zakaria Bashier, pp. 45-46

From Issue: 660 [Read original issue]

Understanding The Prophet's Life

God's Will

Ibn Abbas reports: 'A man said to the Prophet: "Whatever God wills and you will". The Prophet said to him: "You have set up an equal to God. It is what God alone wills".' [Ahmad, Ibn Majah, al-Nasai]

The Prophet is clearly teaching us to place the will of any person as completely secondary to God's will. This is the proper Islamic attitude. The Prophet wanted to inculcate this point in the minds of his companions and followers. Thus, he points to the fact that the conjunction 'and' signifies partnership without ranking; thus it makes whatever it joins together as equals. In this, it is different from the word, 'then', which signifies a secondary position. Thus, then makes the wish of a person subservient to God's will.

All this obviously applies to things in which people's wishes or actions play an actual part. Needless to say, there are things no one other than God can influence. These may not be attributed to anyone other than God, even if we use the conjunction, 'then'. To attribute them to anyone in addition to God signifies that God cannot accomplish them on His Own. This detracts from God's ability. Hence, we should be very careful. In fact, it is always better to speak of God's will as being the ultimate, without adding anyone as involved.

Compiled From:
"Al-Adab al-Mufrad with Full Commentary: A Perfect Code of Manners and Morality" - Adil Salahi

From Issue: 1012 [Read original issue]


Incessant Busyness

There is an old story of a man riding very fast on a horse. As he rides past his friend standing on the side of the road, the friend yells, “Where are you going?” The rider turns toward his friend and yells, “I don’t know, ask the horse!”

The pace and intensity of our lives, both at work and at home, leave many of us feeling like that person riding that frantically galloping horse. Our daily incessant busyness — too much to do and not enough time; the pressure to produce and tick off items on our to-do list by each day’s end — seems to decide the direction and quality of our existence for us. But if we approach our days in a different way, we can consciously change this out-of-control pattern. It only requires the courage to do less. This may sound easy, but doing less can actually be very hard. Too often we mistakenly believe that doing less makes us lazy and results in a lack of productivity. Instead, doing less helps us savor what we do accomplish. We learn to do less of what is extraneous, and engage in fewer self-defeating behaviors, so we craft a productive life that we truly feel good about.

Just doing less for its own sake can be simple, startling, and transformative. Imagine having a real and unhurried conversation in the midst of an unrelenting workday with someone you care about. Imagine completing one discrete task at a time and feeling calm and happy about it.

Every life has great meaning, but the meaning of our own can often be obscured by the fog of constant activity and plain bad habits. Recognize and change these, and we can again savor deeply the ways we contribute to the workplace, enjoy the sweetness of our lives, and share openly and generously with the ones we love. Less busyness leads to appreciating the sacredness of life. Doing less leads to more love, more effectiveness and internal calmness, and a greater ability to accomplish more of what matters most — to us, and by extension to others and the world.

Compiled From:
"Accomplishing More By Doing Less" - Marc Lesser

From Issue: 956 [Read original issue]