Friday, November 29, 2019

'Jihad' and World Politics


One of the most misunderstood and much maligned concepts in the world of religion today is the doctrine of ‘Jihad’ in Islam. Unlike any other matter of devotional piety in any religion, ‘Jihad’ brings around it images of a deadly cocktail of religion, identity politics and armed violence involving wily politicians, extremists and terrorists; generating genuine anxiety, confusion and fear among the people. Indeed, ‘Jihad’ has come to mean different things to different people in our times. 

In our deeply troubled world, where powerful nations set the rules of the global game, non-State actors are also increasingly becoming vital players. In States where turbulent political conditions exist, ‘Jihad’ is almost invariably associated with the call to arms and violence by certain Muslim-groups ostensibly working to protect the collective interests of the Muslim communities concerned. For many governments with separatist movements or insurgent groups in their territorial domain; ‘Jihad’ is nothing but an ideology of unbridled violence and mayhem championed by non-State actorsIn sharp contrast to this, the groups fighting States look upon ‘Jihad’ as the ideology of their political resistance against unjust regimes- the moral and ethical justification for their militant campaigns against governments that ‘oppress’ the people. Inspired by their own notions of injustice and agency; often seeking retribution for alleged past crimes of the State concerned or to induce change in State policies vis-a-vis certain matters; organized groups as well ‘lone wolfs’- including suicide bombers- perpetrate violent crimes, targeting symbols of State power. These attacks often indiscriminately impact civilians as well, leading to ‘collateral damage’- unnecessary suffering for common people caught up in such incidents.

For instance, the horrific 9/11 terror attacks in the United States of America at the beginning of this century- in the year 2001- directed at the symbols of American military and economic heft resulted also in the death of thousands of people going about their everyday lives. The terrorists who executed this most audacious attack claimed they were driven by the ideals of ‘Jihad’ in committing this mass murder. Those who waged this ‘war’ on America were seeking vengeance upon the country for its dreadful policies abroad- including military interventions that killed hundreds of thousands of innocent people, and even destroyed entire societies in the Muslim world. Despite the moral high-ground the parties in conflict- States and the terror groups- seek to assert for themselves, both State terrorism and non-State terrorism are problematic for their means and methods of warfare and also due to the profound consequences such violence has upon its innocent victims, common folks like us.

Sunday, November 24, 2019

Secular Despair and Spiritual Hope


The dismal state of contemporary politics 

When it comes to politics, many people are nowadays apprehensive of the future of their very own land as well as that of their generations and the general population of their country. What we see nowadays is that human rights are being forsaken for money politics and the power of the fittest, especially in the corrupted realm.

This is indeed a very delicate topic to develop [like in my Friday Sermons], yet very important, as politics, true unadulterated politics is really important for the good day-to-day running of our society, countrywide as well as worldwide.

Even if good people, with good and clear conscience strive to uproot the bad weeds in society and seek to transform the political world and make it a better place for the good management of the country, but unfortunately they are met with many obstacles in their way. One of these obstacles is money, the power of money, its power to buy the conscience of people and to put aside honesty and morality, and to dance to the tunes of the corrupted. Alas, our society today, in its global view is deteriorating day by day, and the evils of society are becoming rampant to such an extent that law and order also, in many countries of the world are getting corrupted and unable to function properly to defend the best interest of the nation and the world. The people of the world are suffering due to this mismanagement of their individual societies, which in turn have a bad repercussion on the global society.

Muhammad as the ultimately True & Perfect Political Figure

By the grace of God Almighty [Allah], Islam has the necessary measures to transform a society and make it function properly, and all credit goes to Allah Almighty through His commandments through the ages, and which have been perfected in the glorious and perfect book, the Holy Quran, and put into practice by none other than the best and seal of all prophets, Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh).

Saturday, November 23, 2019

Divine Signs on a Dawah Journey


Hadhrat Khalifatullah (atba) visits Madagascar

By the grace of Allah, I have returned from Madagascar after a week there and I need to say that it was through pure divine grace that Allah manifested such success. La Ghaliba Illallah. When I landed in Madagascar my disciples received me in an emotional way for my last visit there was in 2015. They expressed themselves openly, how they were sad that the Khalifatullah [i.e. this humble self] did not come to visit them [since then]. There was so much emotions on their faces and tears were in their eyes, tears of joys, such extraordinary joy. And when I left them to return to Mauritius, they were very sad and did not want to let me go back. They wanted me to remain with them for a long time.

So, I do not have words poignant enough to describe that one week [which I spent with them]. I do not know where to begin and how to end as there were many extraordinary events.

There were signs which Allah (swt) manifested and which was witnessed by my disciples in Madagascar. One of these is that when we were going to a faraway village, and night was about to come, one of my disciples by the name of Nasir – who is a university student – told me before all those present in [our] transport: “O Caliph of Allah, we are in a place in which it rarely rains, and the people and animals, as well as the plants suffer a lot due to lack of rain water. Please pray that Allah (swt) bless this village and rain falls.” So, when said this, I told him: “OK, let’s pray!”, and it was not yet night and yet it was so hot and the sun was still bright [despite that it was nearing sunset]. Like there is a saying in Creole, “the sun was burning us to such a point that our brain was melting”.

I raised my hands and prayed in that village. When I have finished my supplications [duahs], after ten minutes, the sky became dark and there was the manifestation of lightning, such lightning which emitted an extraordinary light. Everybody was frightened by the sound of thunder. We all know that when lightning manifest, its manifestation is for few seconds only with great noise, i.e. thunder. But concerning this particular manifestation of lightning, it gave such a great light that all people kept on looking up in the sky. And the miracle in it is that the light formed the name of Allah in the sky. So, I was not the only one to witness such manifestation, but the people there. I remained silent [when I saw this] and it was the others who were crying out to others to look up in the sky to see that great divine manifestation [miracle]. Then, after five minutes, there was heavy rainfall. That rain kept on falling for five days and the people benefited from it.

So, Alhamdulillah Summa Alhamdulillah (by the grace Allah), it was such a week spent in Madagascar where the Jamaat Ul Sahih Al Islam made spiritual progress which cannot be described in few words. Allah manifested His countless grace and favours. Allah is Great and His favours also are great.

Sunday, November 17, 2019

'Khataman-Nabiyyine': The Seal of Divine Favours


On the Advent of Prophet-Reformers in Islam

'O children of Adam, if there come to you messengers from among you relating to you My revelations, then whoever fears Allah and reforms - there will be no fear concerning them, nor will they grieve.” (Al-Arraf 7: 36).

This directive has been given to those who believe in the Holy Quran. When a prophet is sent among them in the future, they must be careful not to deny him. On the contrary, they must welcome him with open arms and reform themselves so as not to be ashamed before God on the Day of Judgment. But if there was no prophet after the revelation of the Holy Qur’an, how can one follow this direction found in this same book? Especially when it teaches us the following prayer: 

“Guide us on the right path, the path of those upon whom You have bestowed Your favours.”

Allah (swt) here asks us to pray that we should be among those who have been rewarded by Him. Moreover, the Holy Quran mentions four dignities that are accessible to those who receive the favours of Allah (swt), namely: The rank of prophets, the truthful ones, the martyrs and the pious ones - those who walk on the right way.

Whoever obeys Allah and the Messenger ... these are among those upon whom Allah bestows His blessings, namely, the prophets, the truthful, the martyrs, and the righteous. And what good companions are these!” (An-Nisa 4 : 70)

Thus, of these four categories of rewards, the prophets rank first. How then can we say that there will be no more prophets in Islam?

Our Holy Prophet (pbuh) has been called Khataman-Nabiyyine, and a misinterpretation of this term has given rise to a great misunderstanding where we have translated it as meaning ‘last prophet’, while in reality it means ‘seal of the prophets’, that is, without the seal of Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh) or without his confirmation [i.e. without any one confirming the fact that he is the follower of Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh) and Islam, coming as an Islamic reformer based on Islamic teachings and the approval of Allah], no prophet can come any more. To become a prophet, one must be a disciple / follower of the Holy Prophet (pbuh).

Hazrat Aisha (ra) explained the term “Khataman-Nabiyyine” in these words: “Say he is ‘Khataman-Nabiyyine’ but do not say that there will be no more prophets after him.” (Takmila Majma’ul-Bihar, 85).

To be the seal of the prophets is an honour, to be the last of the prophets gives no greatness whatsoever. Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh) himself said, “I am superior to all previous and future prophets.” (Ad-Dailmi)

Saturday, November 16, 2019

The Blessings of Jalsa Salana


The subject which I have chosen to address you for my opening speech of this (Mauritius) Jalsa Salana for the year 2019 is: The benefits and blessings you derive when you attend the Jalsa Salana. When you come and participate in the Jalsa Salana which was first instituted by the Promised Messiah Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (as), it is a means to remind you that you need to reduce your love for this world and increase your love for Islam, and whereby this will create an extraordinary love for Allah in the hearts of all people who are present, and it is also a reminder that this love needs to be increased day by day till it becomes like a fire which burns in your heart and in your whole body.

When you participate in the Jalsa Salana [marking your presence in the gathering and listening to the speeches etc.], you develop a taste [feel] and an extraordinary love develops in you for the Holy Prophet (pbuh) as well as for Hazrat Massih Ma’ud (as). And when you mark your presence in the Jalsa Salana in a continual way, you shall be cut from all mundane influences and shall become wholly for Allah. When you become for Allah (swt) only, when you prepare yourselves for your life after death, this in fact also represents a [good] preparation for you to leave behind all the pleasures of this world. When you participate in the Jalsa Salana and you listen to the speeches, then your body [i.e. the congregation as one body] and your soul shall be rid from all weakness and fatigue. Your physical body and your soul will remain in a wakeful state and you will receive such an extraordinary determination which transforms you into stable and very talented people.

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Islam and International Law


Religion, Law and State

In his Friday Sermon of 08 November 2019~ 10 Rabi’ul Awwal 1441 AH, Imam- Jamaat Ul Sahih Al Islam Hadhrat Khalifatullah Munir Ahmad Azim Saheb (atba) of Mauritius spoke about the significance of law in upholding the dignity of the individual as well as in sustaining the global order for the collective progress of human kind. Hadhrat Khalifatullah (atba) identifies the distinctive contribution of Islamic values to the development of International Law in this context. 

It is instructive to note that while modern international law was for long considered to be a product of Western, Christian civilization and generally traces its origins to the legal problems that emerged in the context of the European imperial conquests (of South America in the 16th century and Asia and Africa in the subsequent centuries); there is increasing recognition in the academic literature now regarding the  profound debt the discipline owes- in shaping the contours of the subject- to the seminal writings and juristic interpretations of Hazrat Imam Muhammad Al Shaybani (ra), the great disciple of the great Muhaddith Hazrat Imam Abu Hanifa (ra), almost eight centuries before European scholars like Hugo Grotius- the 'father' of international law- began to engage with, and write about, the discipline.   

International Law as it stands today may broadly be defined as an ensemble of normative rules and diplomatic practices that guide actor-expectations in the world of international relations. And the actors on the global scene include, besides the States, international organizations, a host of official governance networks; multinational corporations, indigenous communities and the civil society organizations campaigning on reforming the systems of global governance. Despite the dynamic nature of the actor-interactions as well as the development of global rules in specific areas; the foundational values of International Law remain the same: sovereign equality and peaceful co-existence of States; the sanctity of covenants and the bindingness of legal obligations; the obligation of the Parties to act in good faith; respect for the symbols and signs of sovereignty of States, including the privileges of ambassadors and State agents; respect for diversity of community traditions and practices, etc.  Hadhrat Saheb (atba) illustrates these points with reference to Qur'anic verses and Prophetic practices, as it is the task of the true believers in this era to shun hypocrisy and work to create a just world under Islam. 

Read the Friday Sermon Below: 

Saturday, November 9, 2019

Mauritius Elections and the Muslims-II


The PM and the Politics of 'Development' 

Mr. the Prime Minister (of Mauritius- Mr. Pravind Jugnauth) said that there are (all-round, economic) development in the four corners of the island. These words are not true, Mr. Prime Minister! Say instead that there are continual development in some specific places only. We quote a single example that is obvious and that all Mauritius is witnessing. This is the Prime Minister’s constituency. All ministries are mobilized to please him.

The Prime Minister is preparing himself [he is preparing the ground] for the next elections. But if only he had made similar developments for other constituencies like those he did for his constituency! But unfortunately the mandate of this regime is coming to an end and the Muslim community has been forgotten.

Bring a single piece of evidence to show what development has occurred in the various places where the minorities, including the Muslim community reside. We do not ask you to bring the Metro Express to our door [in our place] as you promised the people of Saint-Pierre, but at least give our youth healthy leisure so that they do not fall into the hell of drugs and other plagues. But again the minorities must be blind to vote again for the parties that boycotted development in these places. After all, who will raise his voice in a council of ministers where the Muslim community is under-represented and where there is no one to raise his voice in its favour? Our patience, Insha-Allah, will bear fruit.