Continuing the series on the theme of 'Ghibbat'- the vice of speaking ill of others behind their backs-, Imam Jamaat Ul Sahih Al Islam Hadhrat Muhyi-ud-Din Al Khalifatullah Munir Ahmad Azim Saheb (atba) of Mauritius, in his Friday Sermon of 27 September 2019 ~ 27 Muharram 1441 AH, provides fascinating insights into the working of the human psyche in inter-personal and social settings. There are intimate connections between backbiting and hypocrisy: whereas a hypocrite will indulge in backbiting; the habit of backbiting can lead the person who indulges in it away from the holy path of Faith. Secondly, while those who indulge in backbiting seek to defame or destroy reputations of others; this vice may have ironical consequences: if the backbiters challenge common sense and attack the reputation of a pious soul, the deception will boomerang on the backbiters, and they will lose face before the people. Likewise, severe backbiting by religious leaders and the priestly class often lead the people away from taking religion seriously. Indeed, people may lose interest in, and they may keep aloof from, the spiritual way altogether. Thirdly, 'Ghibbat' is also a manifestation of other vices in human nature: hatred and jealousy.
During the early days of the Divine Manifestation, the Nizam-e-Jamaat officials in Mauritius brazenly and openly indulged in 'Ghibbat' and other vices against the recipient of Divine revelations among them as they did not comprehend the descent of Divine revelations on someone in their midst. Likewise, people who recognize the sign of God in the person of an Elect of Allah (atba) among them sometimes display great emotions of sincere respect and deep affection and it would be unfair to belittle their sentiments of respect by equating it with Shirk-like practices (God Forbid). Hadhrat Khalifatullah (atba) warns against talking ill about things one do not fully understand, and persons who speak that way need to be wary of the sin of backbiting and hypocrisy.
Read the Friday Sermon Below:
Surah Al Hujurat: Ghibbat, Part III
By the grace of Allah, I am hereby continuing the 3rd part of my Friday Sermon on the subject of “Ghibbat” (backbiting), seeking the defects of others, spying, suspecting and doubting others, putting false allegations, blames etc. on them. Thus, this sermon continues…
Many times, by keeping hypocritical relations with your innocent brothers or sisters, you become a hypocrite. And when hypocrisy arises somewhere, then, there are also possibilities for hypocrisy to develop elsewhere also, in many places/ situations. When someone makes it a habit to adopt hypocrisy, it is “Ghibbat” which becomes a great factor that helps him to become accustomed to hypocrisy.
A hypocrite refers to someone who is accustomed to talking behind someone’s back, but in front of him, he says the complete opposite, and thus gives that person the impression that he was talking in his favour [when this is not the case at all]. In front of him, the hypocrite says lots of things which is very different from his true point of view and what he was really thinking. This is hypocrisy.
And when you behave hypocritically towards others, then take care, because this hypocrisy shall little by little make its way in your faith also. And it is then that you begin to maintain a hypocritical relationship with the Amir Sahib, or Naib Amir, or with the Sadr, the Qa’id, with the Jamaat officials, and thus the “Ghibbat” which was individual become this time a collective “Ghibbat”, at organisational level. And when you talk against the Nizam-e-Jamaat (administration of the Jamaat), behold, it is an even greater sin, for when such a situation arises, you [speaking of the hypocrite and his hypocritical nature] propagate such bad talks against the people who work for the cause of Allah, to incite other people to have disgust for them and to let go of their cooperation with them.
Sometimes when you backbite the officials [working for the cause of Allah], then the people who listen to you develop a disgust, and can even state that: “If this is what religion [Islam] is, then it is best for us to go away, to retreat from it.” This is exactly what happened when I was expelled me from the Nizam-e-Jamaat Ahmadiyya; delegations from the Jamaat Ahmadiyya of Mauritius went to such islands, like Reunion Island, Mayotte, Seychelles, Rodrigues etc., as from the year 2001 onwards and began to do “Ghibbat”, and said all sorts of great lies and put all kinds of false allegations on my person, saying that I take drugs, that I take medicines and that under the effect of those medicines I say that I receive revelations. On the contrary, if that was indeed true, then they should have rushed forward to know what kind of medicines I was taking which makes me get DIVINE revelations and they should strive to take those medicines to get such revelations! But what did they do? They labelled the revelations I was receiving as satanic revelations, God Forbid - Nawzubillah min Zaalik.
When they acted like this, they have deviated the people on the islands from the teachings of Islam and Ahmadiyyat. They thought that they will make these people have disgust for me and abandon me only, but these people retreated from the very practice of Islam and Ahmadiyyat. They thought that they were doing a great work and that those people would believe in their lies. On the contrary, they were themselves greatly humiliated in front of those people because the latter knew me very well and how I worked hard throughout the years on the islands with them, and they knew what kind of person I was and many among them even said: “If the missionary say that such a person like Sheikh Munir Azim has been expelled from the Jamaat, then what is the use of staying in this Jamaat? It is through him that we have come to know this Jamaat.”
Moreover, there are some who have gone on an island and declared to a big family who once took the Bai’at through me and who were sincere [in the Jamaat Ahmadiyya at that time] and who did lots of sacrifice for the Jamaat; so, to get in their good books etc., one of them posed as a judge in the court of justice in Mauritius, while another one as a great lawyer in Mauritius. What did they not do in their imbecility?!!! They belittled themselves to such a level that the people on those islands are talking bad things for them, as if cursing them for the bad things and talks that they have committed and said. Despite all their evil attempts, the Jamaat Ul Sahih Al Islam keeps progressing greatly in those islands! Alhamdulillah Summa Alhamdulillah.
[When these evil-minded people tried to create problems for me and ruin my reputation] These people [i.e. on the islands] lost all interest and enthusiasm for the Jamaat Ahmadiyya which I established on those islands from 1990 to 2000.
[A statement which happened in the past, and also a warning for future occurrences – the Jamaat of Allah – as well] So, it is disgusting how such hypocrites attack someone who is working for the cause of Allah and attack also the other office-bearers who are working for the Jamaat. And one shall see that all this starts by the ignition of hatred, and jealousy and thereafter, there is “Ghibbat” (backbiting).
So, “Muhabbat” (love) and “Ghibbat” (backbiting) cannot be together. Love and affection have no relation to backbiting. There are many ways with which we can fight backbiting. A positive way to do it is to establish a relation of love with others and also to strive to earn the love of those who are working day and night for the cause of Allah (for the Jamaat of Allah/ Divine Manifestation) and establish a bond of love and respect for those who are administrating the Jamaat with sincerity and Taqwa (fear of Allah, piety, righteousness).
You need to have this line of thought: “We are free and are able to do our personal works whereas the bearers of responsibility of the Jamaat are doing the work of religion and if we keep good relations with them, then it will be a way for us to gain the pleasure of Allah. It is indeed for the sake (pleasure) of Allah that we will keep good relations with them.”
If the people think along these lines, they will intentionally establish a relationship of respect with the people in charge of the Jamaat, even if those bearers of responsibility are younger than them; and therefore they will strive to forge a strong bond of love [brotherly or sisterly love for the sake of Allah] with them. Even if you don’t have this love naturally, then you should strive to develop it in you. Sometimes respect change into love. And sometimes love change into respect. This subject is naturally complementary. I am not talking about the natural love which is created following a manifestation of beauty, no.
I am talking about such love which is acquired through certain beauties, i.e. love which is manifested because the object of your affection [whether a person or the works of religion] is deeply connected with other objects of love. If you have love for someone, then you will also have love for the things which is connected with that person, such things which if the person loves them, you also will love them. You will love them despite the fact that you don’t have a natural love for them, but you develop this love only because the person that you love loves these things. [Huzur (atba) cited the example of Laila-Majnu which is an epic love story where Majnu, due to his love for Laila even developed love for the dog of Laila!] And that’s a truth [i.e. such kind of love]. Therein there is no doubt that when love increases to such an extent as to become to the level of madness, then you will love all things that are connected with the people you love. And therein, it is not possible for someone to do otherwise. It is beyond his control.
So, when I am telling about “Muhabbat”, I am not teaching you any hypocrisy. I am telling you a deep truth. I am telling you also that love has an effect on your connections as well. That is why I have many times put the example of the Sahaba (companions of the Holy Prophet (pbuh)) before you. The love which the Sahaba had was indeed extraordinary. Today also many in the world claim to have such great love but the love of the Sahaba was of a very great nature, to a great level. Love was in their eyes, on their faces, in every parcel of their body. Each part of their body testified to that love. That is why in the beginning, when I travelled and met my disciples/ companions (Sahaba), especially in the islands and countries of Africa, they grabbed my hand and kissed it. I used to be very shy about it. They displayed beautiful love and affection. At that time, I used to be embarrassed by this display of affection. I did not understand well the affection which these men showed, and I even wondered: “Is it not Shirk?” But, seeing this respect, and the love and affection on their faces, I remained silent.
After making duahs (praying) on this subject, Allah (swt) made me understand that the love which they have for Nabi Kareem (pbuh), for Hazrat Masih Ma’ud (as), for the teachings of Islam, their love is so great that they display this happiness because of the honour which they have received to have witnessed the advent of a Messenger of Allah in their time. As for the others, despite the fact that Allah has also given them this divine favour, but they turned on their backs to it. As for those who have recognized this truth, they feel happy, despite the loads of trials they undergo; they feel fortunate to be like the Sahaba in the time of the Holy Prophet (pbuh) or those Sahaba in the time of the Promised Messiah (as).
Today among you there is someone who is sent by Allah and Allah talks with him and he comes from Allah to revive His teachings and the works which Nabi Kareem Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh) came to do. The same teachings which Allah (swt) sent through him (pbuh) to bring all mankind to Him – the Unique God.
Today also my followers feel happy that among the billions of people who live in this world, they have received the honour to witness divine revelations, and how divine revelations are bestowed [on the Elect of Allah], how Allah pours down His messages [Divine Messages]. - [And when Allah gives them instructions/ messages through the Messenger, they take it as a blessing, they feel fortunate, they don’t cry and feel that the messages are directly pointed at them – whether positive or negative (for their reform). They take it as a blessing and they obey].
So, when I have well understood this message from Allah, now I am not embarrassed when my disciples take hold firmly of my hand and there are others who kiss my hand and all this is a way through which my disciples show their love for the Khalifatullah. So, in this situation, it is not right for me to offend the sincerity found in their love which they display for the Khalifa (Caliph) of Allah of this era. Alhamdulillah.
May Allah the Almighty always make you remain sincere with His Caliph - Khalifatullah without any hypocrisy, without any show/ ostentation. Ameen. Insha-Allah, I shall continue the other part of my Friday Sermon next week...