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Today's Reminder

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Living The Quran

True Implications
Al-Jumua (The Congregation) - Chapter 62: Verses 9-10

"O you who believe, when you are called to prayer on the Friday (lit. the "day of congregation"), hurry to the remembrance of prayer and cease all business. That is better for you if you only knew. Then when the prayer is finished, disperse throughout the land and seek the bounty of God and remember God frequently so that you will prosper."

In this passage, the verbs "hurry," "cease," "disperse," and "seek" are all in the imperative form. However, scholars understand only "hurry" and "cease" to create an obligation (farida), while "disperse" and "seek" imply permission (nadb), not obligation. That is, believers must make a sincere effort to get to the Friday prayer on time and must not engage in business after the call to prayer is made. On the other hand, believers are not required to leave the mosque and go to work when the prayer is finished. If they like they can go home for a nap, have lunch, stay in the mosque and study, etc.

The question arises, how do scholars distinguish which verbs imply obligation and which imply permission if all of them are expressed in the imperative form? Clearly, it is only by bringing some other factors to the text that it is possible to make such a distinction. The Sunna of the Prophet, the consensus of the scholars, and other considerations are brought in to the interpretive process to help understand the true implications of any Quranic verse. Given that so many variables are considered relevant to the analysis of any Quranic passage, it is not surprising that scholars will arrive at different conclusions.

Compiled From:
"The Story of The Quran: Its History and Place in Muslim Life" - Ingrid Mattson, pp. 189, 190

From Issue: 858 [Read original issue]

Understanding The Prophet's Life

Sanction for Authority in Islam

The Prophet, on him be peace, ordered his Community to appoint authorities over them, and commanded these authorities to fulfil their trusts and when judging between people to judge fairly. He ordered them to obey those in authority in obedience to God, Exalted is He.

In the Sunan of Abu Dawud we have it on the authority of Abu Said that the Messenger of God said: "When three men go on a journey let them put one of their number in command." In the Musnad of Imam Ahmed we learn on the authority of Abdullah ibn Umar that the Prophet said: "It is not permissible for three men to be in a desert place without putting one of their number in command."

Now since the Prophet demanded of the smallest groups and most limited societies that one person be put in charge, we must admit the same obligation where greater numbers are involved.

Source:
"Public Duties in Islam" - Ibn Taymiya, p. 22

From Issue: 472 [Read original issue]

Cool Tips!

Motivation

Charles Schwab, president of U.S. Steel and the highest-paid executive of his time, understood how to motivate men. When one of his mills wasn't producing its quota, he went to the mill manager and addressed him personally:

"How is it," Schwab asked, "that a man as capable as you can't make this mill turn out what it should?"

"I don't know," the man replied, "I've coaxed the men; I've pushed them; I've sworn and cussed; I've threatened them with damnation and being fired. But nothing works. They just won't produce."

"Give me a piece of chalk," Schwab said. Then, turning to the nearest man: "How many heats did your shift make today?"

"Six."

"Without another word, Schwab chalked a big figure six on the floor, and walked away. When the night shift came in, they saw the '6' and asked what it meant. 'The big boss was in here today,' the day men said. 'He asked us how many heats we made, and we told him six. He chalked it on the floor.'

"The next morning Schwab walked through the mill again. The night shift had rubbed out '6,' and replaced it with a big '7.'

"When the day shift reported for work the next morning, they saw a big '7' chalked on the floor. So the night shift thought they were better than the day shift, did they? Well, they would show the nightshift a thing or two. They pitched in with enthusiasm and when they quit that night, they left behind them an enormous, swaggering '10.' Things were stepping up..."

If you're looking to motivate those around you, throw down a challenge.

Compiled From:
"How to Win Friends and Influence People" - Dale Carnegie, pp. 238-240

From Issue: 868 [Read original issue]