Miraculous, Sharing Sunna, Nature of Sins

Issue 703 » September 14, 2012 - Shawwal 27, 1433

Living The Quran

Al-Isra (The Ascension) Chapter 17: Verse 59

"Moreover, nothing keeps Us from sending forth more of the miraculous signs that the disbelievers demand, except Our knowledge that the earliest generations of humanity belied them all. For We gave to the people of Thamud the miraculously created she-camel, brought forth before their very eyes, and still they wronged her. Nor do We send forth miraculous signs except to put the fear of God in people's hearts."

The more something transcends the "normal," the greater its controversy, and the less people will believe it really happened. Yet, the human being does not tire - rather, insists! - on the miraculous when it comes to religion.

What people do not realize, or tend to forget, is that the miraculous comes not only as an affirmation of the truth of God, but as a test of people's faith in that truth that brings about their divine denunciation if they fail to believe after having witnessed it or after they have received its account through a valid report, such as through a subsequent Prophet or a revealed Book of God.

This is the meaning of the example in the verse just cited, that of the miraculously created she-camel sent as a sign to the ancient people of Thamud. When a miracle occurs, one party accepts it, but another always rejects, and each group exerts itself in its argument to vindicate or debunk its occurence.

Science has many more believers today in its "miraculous" possibilities than does religion. They tend to reject reports about miracles that happened in the context of religion, considering them superstitions that do not correspond with what they believe they know about the laws of physics, forgetting that we know little, indeed, about the universe. There are also sincere men and women of religion who seek to interpret these miraculous events in a manner that accords with the sensibilities of the modern mindset, preferring to explain them by the serendipity of certain "scientific" events or to interpret them as allegorical or spiritual in their "real" meaning.

Yet the Quran tells us three things: (1) it happened; (2) it happened with precisely this intent, that is, to test the faith of people; (3) the outcome of the miraculous on the mind of the skeptical has usually just the opposite effect than it ought to have on a rational creature; namely, the narrowing of belief in their breast, which leads to greater sin.

Compiled From:
"The Gracious Quran" - Ahmad Zaki Hammad, pp. 212-214

Understanding The Prophet's Life

Sharing Sunna

The Sunna is the window opened on the Messenger of God, the sacred way leading to the blessings of Islam. Without it, Muslims cannot implement Islam in their daily lives or establish a connection with the Messenger. The Prophet, peace be upon him, encouraged Muslims to learn, implement and share his Sunna, saying:

"May God make radiant the face of the servant who has heard my speech and, committing it to memory and observing it in daily life, conveys it to others." [Ibn Maja]

The Messenger spoke distinctly and sometimes repeated his words so his audience could memorize them [Bukhari]. He taught them supplications and recitations that were not in the Quran with the same care and emphasis as he taught the Quran [Muslim]. He continually urged his Companions to spread his words and teach others what they knew. If they did not, he warned them: "If you are asked about something you know and then conceal that knowledge, a bridle of fire will be put on you on the Day of Judgment." [Tirmidhi]

Keeping these words and warnings in mind, the Companions strove to record the Sunna. They then lived their lives in accordance with Islamic principles and commands, and conveyed what they knew to others. They formed study and discussion groups to refine their understanding.

Compiled From:
"The Messenger of God: Muhammad" - Fethullah Gulen, pp. 327-329


Nature of Sins

Human beings are not culprits or oppressors by nature. Allah has created us with many talents and capabilities. If we commit a sin, it is because of us abusing our right of autonomy. It is Satan who prompts us to oppress by persuading us to break the few restrictions that Allah has put on our vast freedom. Satan tells us that these few restrictions are a great hindrance to our comfort and living. Once they are overcome, the doors of progress, comfort and living are open to mankind. We see the short-term benefits of these devilish inducements and so become trapped. Thus, we indulge in sins against the noble qualities of our nature.

The sin committed because of a weakness in one's will-power is of a different nature from sin committed because of pride and jealousy. There is a good chance of repentance and reform for sins committed due to a weakness of determination. Allah takes care of such persons and guides them on the Right Path. Contrary to this, the disease of those who disobey Allah due to pride and jealousy is a severe one. Instead of being reformed, these people follow their leader iblis. The sin of Adam was of the first kind and, therefore, he had the courage to ask for repentance which was then granted to him. The sin of iblis was of the second kind, hence he was deprived of repentance and reform, and ultimately incurred God's curse.

Compiled From:
"Words That Moved the World" - Qazi Ashfaq Ahmad, pp. 82-84