Teachings of the Qur'aan: Al-Maaidah

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Teachings of the Qur'aan: Al-Maaidah

Post by Sohail on Mon Dec 13, 2010 3:57 pm

[b]B i s m i l l a a h i r R a h m a a n i r R a h e e m
Teachings of the Qur`aan

Al-Maaidah
Soorah 5
Aayaat 20 - 26


Now, the fulfillment of the covenant requires Muslims to take control of the affairs of the world so that the Islamic system of peace, justice and excellence can be established for the benefit of the whole humanity. This means replacing the existing powers and rulers which requires hard work and struggle that is not possible without enduring hardships and making sacrifices in terms of personal time, priorities, interest, resources and even one’s life and health. These hardships can be endured only by those who are extremely sincere to the objectives of Deen and its establishment in fulfilling their covenant and these sacrifices can be made only by those who are fully committed to that cause. They are those who love Allaah and His pleasure more than anything in this world. This love of Allaah Subhaanahu wa Ta`aala gives them the courage, bravery and fearlessness unattainable by anyone who prefers the life of this world. It also gives them an attitude of liberty and freedom, independence of thought and action and confidence and vision to lead the world.

Unfortunately, when Muslims start preferring the life and priorities of this world over the hereafter, they become cowardly, weak and short-sighted. They are subjugated by their enemies. Living under subjugation conditions them to a very different paradigm of living. They lose the ability to take a stand for anything, to become united or to dedicate themselves to their mission. They presume their bondage, weakness, humiliation and wretched condition as unchangeable. They develop a defeatist mentality. They just see impossibility, instead of taking it as a challenge; in fact, they become so used to their miserable condition that they accept it as a normal state of affairs. Although they have all the potential, manpower and resources to make change for the better, they live by their weakness rather than capitalizing on their potential. Their case becomes like an incredibly powerful, adult elephant who is raised in captivity. He serves his keeper and obeys his commands submissively in return for some fodder. They only reason his keeper can control him is because he has been conditioned to accept his captivity as a normal fact of life. Although he can easily break away from the chain used to restrain him and gain his freedom, he does not even try because he has been conditioned to believe that gaining freedom is impossible for him. Besides, he is not willing to sacrifice his “privilege” to have free fodder given to him daily.

That was exactly the condition of the Jews when Moosa`alayhissalaam brought them out of Egypt. The next few verses give an example of their abandoning their part of the covenant because of their defeatist mentality and their love of this world even if it meant being weak and humiliated. They also mention the punishment Allaah gave them for their refusal to correct their attitude, which supports the statement that without fulfilling their covenant, they are not special. It also serves as an example of: “Why does He then punish you?”

20 And when Moosa said to his people: O my people! Remember the favour of Allaah upon you when He raised prophets among you and made you kings and gave you what He had not given to any other among the nations. 21 O my people! Enter the holy land that Allaah has ordained for you and do not turn your backs, thus becoming losers. 22 They responded, “O Moosa, there indeed are giant strongmen in it and, therefore, we are not going to enter it until they leave. If they leave, then surely we will enter. 23 From among those who were scared, two men on whom Allaah had bestowed favour said, “Enter upon them through the gate. Once you have entered, you will certainly be victorious. And upon Allaah you must rely, if you are believers.” 24 They repeated, “O Moosa, we shall never enter it so long as they are in it; go therefore you and your Lord and fight! We will sit here. 25 Moosa said, “My Lord, I have control of none but myself and my brother, so separate us from this nation of disobedient people.” 26 He responded, “For this, it shall surely be forbidden to them for forty years, they shall wander about in the land, therefore, do not grieve for the nation of disobedient people.”

This incident occurred when Moosa `alayhissalaam and Banee Israaeel reached Palestine where their fathers, Prophets Ibraaheem, Is-ĥaaq and Ya‘qoob`alayhimussal aam had established Islamic society in the past. It was then inhabited by idolaters. Banee Israaeel were commanded to take over that land and re-establish the Islamic system of peace, justice and excellence. Allaah Subhaanahu wa Ta`aala had promised success in their endeavour, but they first had to fight to wrest its control from the idolaters.

It has been called the holy land because of its past as the Islamic territory and a centre of Islamic mission for the aforementioned prophets`alayhimuss alaam.

The words “written for you” should not be misunderstood. It does not mean that it is given to a race called Israelites for perpetuity, regardless of what they do. It means that their victory is assured and they will be able to conquer it with the help of Allaah Subhaanahu wa Ta`aala. It does not mean that it will be given to them on a platter. Allaah Subhaanahu wa Ta`aa;a never gives anything to believers on a platter. They must initiate action, put their utmost best efforts and resources to it and make all the required sacrifices for it and then Allaah Subhaanahu wa Ta`aala will take care of what is beyond their human capacity and control and help them win.

Knowing the Israelite’s lack of resolve, courage and willingness to make sacrifices, Moosa`alayhissalaam started first by reminding them of their past glory and status before commanding them to attack Palestine. It was to encourage them to regain their glory and re-establish the Islamic state in that area. So, he reminds them about their ancestor prophets until the time of Yoosuf `alayhissalaam after whom they ruled Egypt as kings for some time.

But it did not work. During the long period of their subjugation in Egypt, after they had lost their power, they had become so conditioned to their own wretched state that they could not muster any courage to fight. The fear of the power of the enemy paralyzed them. The thought of destruction by the powerful enemy made them abandon their mission and their covenant. It did not matter to them that Allaah Subhaanahu wa Ta`aala had promised them victory, though they knew that Allaah Subhaanahu wa Ta`aala had always come to their help every step of the way since they had left Egypt.

Two of their leaders who themselves were scared of the consequences of the war had faith in Allaah Subhaanahu wa Ta`aala’s promise and duly understood the meaning of Tawakkul or reliance on Allaah Subhaanahu wa Ta`aala. They knew that they had to put in their best efforts, resources and do everything humanly possible without fearing the consequences; then Allaah’s help would come. They showed courage and spoke up in favour of confronting the enemy, but the whole congregation turned against them and wanted to stone them. People wanted Allaah Subhaanahu wa Ta`aala to make it happen miraculously, without them having to make any sacrifices. Little did they understand that Allaah Subhaanahu wa Ta`aala’s promise does not work that way.

Consequently, Allaah Subhaanahu wa Ta`aala decided to deprive them of a homeland until this coward generation who had been conditioned to be defeatist expired and was replaced by a new generation who grew up with preference for freedom and commitment for an Islamic state as their homeland.[1]

This episode is in reality a mirror presented to us to see our face in it. The condition of our ummah currently is exactly as described for Banee Israaeel at that time. The Muslim Ummah has such a great share of resources and manpower that they can establish the Islamic system of justice, peace and excellence over the whole globe and rid the humanity from the tyranny of the current powers ruling the world with injustice and all out corruption. Allaah’ Subhaanahu wa Ta`aalas promise is there that if we stand up for His mission, He will help us. Unfortunately, an overwhelming majority of the Muslim Ummah has no faith in Allaah’s promise, no commitment to the mission and no stomach to make any sacrifice for the objectives of Deen. If some noble souls stand up to encourage us to take a stand, the whole Ummah gangs up against those noble souls and gives thousands of reasons why it cannot work or why Muslims cannot win.

Most of the Ummah is sitting and waiting for some miracle to happen that restores their honour and status without them having to do anything. Well, this is never going to happen. Allaah Subhaanahu wa Ta`aala only helps those who prove themselves worthy of His help, by making sacrifices and putting all their energies and resources for the objectives of Deen regardless of the costs they have to pay and the destruction they have to suffer.

Often, Muslims ask: If Islam is the Deen of Allaah Subhaanahu wa Ta`aala, why are Muslims in such wretched conditions all over the world? Why does not Allaah help us? This episode answers their questions. They also ask: when will this be over and we will have our deserved status and honour in this world? The answers is simple: When we are ready to put the objective of Deen first and foremost in our lives; when an overwhelming majority of Muslims is dedicated to the Islamic mission and when that majority is willing to make any sacrifices required to attain success; Allaah Subhaanahu wa Ta`aala will help us and restore our due status.


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