Saturday, May 30, 2020

'Eid-ul-Fitr' Sermon 2020

I wish Eid Mubarak to all my disciples around the world and I pray that this Eid be a blessing for us and the entire Muslim world. Insha-Allah.

Islam uses the word “Eid” to express joy. It’s a day that comes at the end of Ramadan, the month of fasting and sacrifice. It is a day when our prayers (Salaat and Duahs) are accepted, and we must make this supplication: O Allah, make this day come more often. Ameen.

On that day, Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh) used to praise Allah in a very special way with great love and brilliance. A question was asked: When was Eid first celebrated?

The first Ramadan was observed in the second year of the Hegira and it was during this same Ramadan that Muslims fought the battle of Badr. The Muslims weren’t even done dressing the wounds of war. It is mentioned that the Holy Prophet (pbuh) was so exhausted that he leaned on Hazrat Bilal (ra) and it was only with the help of the latter that he stood up and pronounced his sermon.

A few days before the celebration of Eid, he announced the Sadaqat-ul-Fitr which he had made compulsory for every Muslim. As soon as this Fitrana was announced, the companions generously contributed. The money thus collected was distributed among the poor before and after Eid festival.

However according to another tradition (Sunnah), it was during this same Eid that the Holy Prophet (pbuh) had, outdoors and in a vast place celebrated the Eid festival. According to Hazrat Jabir bin Abdullah (ra), the Holy Prophet (pbuh) in his sermon, placed great emphasis on the glory and the Hamd (praise) of Allah. He praised Allah in an extraordinary and special way.

Another Hadith was reported by Jabir (ra) concerning the way the Eid was celebrated. He narrated: I attended the prayer with Allah’s Messenger (pbuh) on the day of Eid. He started with the prayer before the Sermon, with no Adhan (the call to Prayer) and no Iqamah.

When he finished the prayer, the Holy Prophet (pbuh) stood leaning on Bilal (ra) and urged the faithful to practice Taqwa (it is very likely that it was the first Eid). 

He reminded them of their status and gave them advice, then he went among the ladies and also gave them advice.

There are four qualities that any disciple or servant (faqir) who goes about the affairs of this world must have; if he does not have them, there is no point in bothering oneself with him, even if he were the most educated man on earth! 

He must avoid the company of tyrants; he should prefer that of the pious people. Fleeing the company of tyrants is beneficial for religion; for such frequentation [that of tyrants, bad people, plotters and hypocrites] veils the light of faith while avoiding it preserves oneself from punishment. As the verse says: Do not trust those who have been unjust lest the fire reach you.

Preferring the company of pious people is also beneficial for a believing disciple in this world [who finds himself trapped by this lowly world], because the frequentation of the men of God and the benefit which he derives from it allows him to preserve himself from the trouble caused by secondary causes. He will indeed enjoy their spiritual revitalization (their breath) and their blessing will eventually manifest on his person.

The needy are also to be rescued. A servant must indeed be grateful for the favours that God has granted him. If some of the doors of this world have been opened to you, remember those to which they were closed.

Know that God tests the rich by the poor in the same way that He tests the poor by the rich. God made some of you a test for others. Will you bear it?

Your Lord (Rab) sees everything; The poor constitute a divine favour for the rich, since they [the poor] relieve them [the rich] of their sins in the hereafter; those [i.e. the rich] who have found someone [i.e. the poor] to relieve them of their riches, they will similarly find God in the hereafter to relieve them of their sins! And God is the Sovereign (Al-Ghani), and He is worthy of all praise.

If there were not indeed the poor, who would receive alms from the rich, and where would they find someone to take [part of] their property? This is why the Holy Prophet (pbuh) said: One who gives alms from a lawful good - because God only accepts the lawful - it is as if he had placed it in the hand of the Merciful [i.e. Allah] so that He makes it bear fruit the way one of you grows a brood of chicks or a herd of foals: [thus deposited] a mouthful of bread would end up becoming [high] like the mountain of Uhud!

This is also the reason why one of the conditions of the Hour is that we can no longer find anyone who accepts alms.

Concerning prayer (Salaat), the Holy Prophet (pbuh) taught that prayer in congregation is twenty-five degrees higher than that performed alone (or twenty-seven according to another version of this same Hadith).

Had God forced the servants to pray in their homes or in their shops, the mosques would no longer be of any use, and the word of God would have lapsed! But does He not say: In houses (that) Allah has permitted to be raised up and His Name to be mentioned therein- in them His Name is glorified in the mornings and in the afternoons or the evenings; Men whom neither trade nor sale diverts them from the Remembrance of Allah?

In addition, common prayer unites hearts and seal them together, urging them to give each other mutual support. It is also an opportunity for believers to meet and see each other.

The Holy Prophet (pbuh) said: For when this community comes together, the blessings contained in each heart extend to all the faithful, and their lights spread even on those who see them. It is community solidarity [of the Ummah, a united Ummah], comparable in this to that of an army, which is the source of victory [Insha-Allah]. And this we can understand better through this Qur’anic verse: Surely Allah loves the ones who fight in His way in rank (s) as if they were a compact structure.

One last point that you must observe O you who are a believer: It is to look away (from all illicit things), from the moment you leave your home until your return. Remember in this regard the words of God (swt): Tell the believers to lower their gaze and to be chaste: this is purer for them!

Knowing what divine favour has been given to you in respect to your Sight [your faculty of seeing with two eyes which has been granted to you] - to see His Universe - then do not be disloyal, unfaithful or ungrateful to Him [God]. Keep these two verses in mind when you walk through the door of your home: God is aware of the most furtive of glances, and of all that hearts conceal. And the second: Allah is All-Hearing, All-Seeing.

So if you want to do something against what God has taught you or given permission, know that God sees you. And also know that to those who know how to lower their gaze, therefore each of their actions which is based on good intention will be rewarded with Allah. For those who find the sphere / circle of the manifest (Al-Shahada) too narrow for their taste, God will widen their field of vision to that of the non-manifest (Al-Ghayb) [that is, they prefer the afterlife than this temporal world].

So, for me, no one has preserved his gaze from the forbidden without this generating in his heart, without any doubt, a light of which he will taste the sweetness.

Dire State of the Faith 

On this day of Eid-ul-Fitr, it is my duty as the Khalifatullah to reflect on what is happening in the Muslim world in general: How many Muslims are observing the five daily prayers, the annual fasts, the obligatory Zakaat and the pilgrimage? How many of them are sincerely fulfilling all of these pillars of Islam?

I know that we are living in a period of national and international containment/ lockdown [in many countries of the world] and in some countries too, the lockdown has been removed or softened / lightened, but the fact remains that, Eid-ul-Fitr fell in such a day where we are still in lockdown and where gatherings of believers are currently prohibited by the authorities. Verily, everything is based on our intention.

It’s a golden opportunity for Muslims to realize and make provision for the ladies so that they get the opportunity to perform the Eid’s prayer too. But how many people are really thinking about [pondering over] this subject? The ladies, according to the majority of Muslims who ignored the Sunnah at the time of Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh), cannot attend the mosques, but these people forget that the ladies also participated in prayers in congregations and also enjoyed prayers of Eid as I mentioned to you by giving you the example of the Hadith where it is reported that Hazrat Muhammad (pssl) supported himself on Hazrat Bilal (ra) and they entered the women’s section after talking to the men and giving them advices.

It is true that men and women should not be together [in the same praying area] to pray, but each of the sexes has the right to benefit from prayer in congregation, and this can be done with the men being in front to pray and the women behind the men, or the men can pray in one section of the mosque while the women are in another section of the same mosque. But both sexes have the right to benefit from prayer in congregation, especially that of Eid (and the other prayers - Salaat - too). Remember that a lady or / and a girl represents a whole nation because it is the mother who carries a baby, a believer and it is she who gives him his first lessons, his first education (Tarbiyyah). So, if a woman is deprived of all knowledge of the Deen - because of the restriction of the men on her that prevents her from fulfilling her right, and that [same right which] Allah and His Messenger (pbuh) gave her, then what education will she give to her children?

Furthermore, in these lockdown moments, similar to the time of the Promised Messiah (as), when there was no Tawaf (circumambulation), Umrah (lesser pilgrimage) and Hajj (greater pilgrimage) in general. Allah knows better if there will be Hajj soon or not. Indeed, one of the signs of the Hour is that Hajj would not be accomplished. So all this is food for thought, where Allah makes you think about the fact that He sent you His Chosen Servant, His Caliph [the Khalifatullah] to bring you all together, to give you the correct teachings of Islam, to correct the little mistakes and misunderstandings that have entered Islam, and to guide you once again to this Sahih al Islam [True Islam].

Allah (swt) says in the Qur’an: Today I have completed your religion for you, I have completed my favours on you and I have chosen Islam as religion for you.

In another place in the Qur’an, Allah mentions the Qur’an as being very sacred and truthful. The Qur’an is the word of Allah, and Allah has promised to preserve it from time immemorial: Verily, We have sent the Qur’an, and, verily, We will protect it. [In other words, Allah will prevent people from changing it].

The question that arises: How will the Holy Qur’an be protected? How will God protect this Qur’an? Currently there are so many so-called scholars and differences in Islam. Allah (swt) being faithful to His promise, then definitively He (God) protected, [and even today] protects and will continue to protect the text of the Holy Qur’an against the decadences of time, against human interpolations, especially in times when Muslims are only in name only, that is, they cease to be practicing Muslims.

Let me give you an example: The Muslim world as a whole speaks of Saudi Arabia as a model. Why ? For Muslims [in general], we have great respect for this Holy Land because it is on this same land that our beloved prophet (pbuh) was born and became the universal prophet; and it was there that the Qur’an was revealed. You could say that the religion of Islam was born there and there is also the Sacred House, the Holy Ka’aba where believers fulfill the 5th pillar of Islam (Hajj).

But when you look closely at what the guardians of these sacred places do, it’s a shame! It is shameful what happened in the year 2018, the same year that Allah opened the way for His chosen servant so that He enters Saudi Arabia to circumambulate the Holy Ka’aba and to complete his Umrah and duahs.

For five days I took this abundant opportunity to stay near this House of Humanity [the Holy Ka’aba] to pray for the Noble Prophet’s (pbuh) Ummah. By the grace of Allah, Allah (swt) made me observe several things and what I saw made me cry tears of blood [I say this with great sorrow]. I have seen that unbelief and tolerance for non-Islamic things are on the agenda, and I have seen how Islam is wrapped in the dust because of all they do. People who live in great luxury, the wealthy have gone astray in the pursuit of pleasure. We see a Saudi Arabia whose national flag contains the Shahada inscribed on it with a sword, and this Shahada flies among so many other flags, where? In the festival de Cannes! There, where films are screened and rewarded etc., for the productions of these films! And the festival de Cannes is also synonymous with indecent parades of actresses for the presentation of their films. It would never have crossed our minds that Saudi Arabia would enter such lowliness/ baseness. Muslims, especially those in power there agree to sell Islam for a small profit! 

We know that European culture allows an excessive freedom of behaviours and people do what they want to do to attract the attention of the public. Therefore, because of this excessive freedom, they invent such events as music concerts, awards ceremonies [Palms, Caesars, Oscars etc.] and the celebration of Valentine’s Day, among others.

But what is shocking is to see such people who supposedly represent Islam, and the Holy Land come to participate in such indecent parades only for their own personal interests! In such an illegal place where all kinds of films are screened, we see that even Saudi Arabia presented for the first time an extremely dirty short film. This does not do the Ummah any credit. O Muslims, is that what you call Islam?

O Muslims! Faith [Imaan] is humiliated, but you do not abandon this carcass that is this world! You are giving the enemies of Islam an opportunity to attack Islam. Pay attention to the time of death, as it is near. Oh ignorant people, how long will you continue to abandon Islam, and take it as a footboard to make yourselves a lot of illicit money on illicit things? How much longer are you going to act like infidels and have fun with shameless women, while your own wives, those who are chaste and pious, are marginalized and trampled upon and you prevent them from acquiring knowledge [and practicing] the Deen [Islam]? How long will you trample the teachings of Islam and reduce them to dust?

Moreover, the Arabs are not the only ones now to act in a non-Islamic way, but also those who are at the head of the Jamaat of the Promised Messiah (as) - Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (as) - because, they also have entered a terrible baseness by producing films and doing all kinds of actions which are contrary to Islam, which are contrary to everything that our beloved master Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh) and the Promised Messiah (as) taught us. Today, they too are similar to other Muslims [in their actions]. In the past, they [mainstream Ahmadi Muslims] criticized other Muslims, but today, with the advent of another Messenger of Allah - non-law-bearing one - they have fallen to the same level of baseness. They let the world prevail over their faith and their religion (Deen). The world has become their religion. And they commit the Shirk (associate partners in the worship of Allah) in different ways. Shirk does not only mean putting an idol in marble or cement or wood and praying it. No ! Idol is all that you give preference to over Allah and His Deen-i-Islam!

In this context, I will briefly tell you about a dream that one of my very dear disciples in Tamil Nadu, India, more specifically in Coimbatore saw last Thursday or Friday. His name is Muktharuddin Sahib and he had the following dream:

He entered a large mosque and he realized it is an Ahmadi mosque. He saw people waiting for prayer time in congregation [They were waiting for prayer to start]. Most of these people were Ahmadi Mullahs who were against our Jamaat [Sahih al Islam]. One of them invited him to join them for prayer, but Muktharuddin Sahib refused and said to them, “I do not pray with people who do Shirk.” So most of these people got angry and cursed him and no one even answered Salam (Peace Greeting in Islam) to him. And then he thought it was a difficult moment [situation]. Right after that, he heard a voice, from above, as if, it came from the top of the Minaret of the mosque which said to him: “Allah sends His Salutation of Peace [Salaam] upon you.” [Salaam from Allah to you].

Allahu Akbar! So the promise of protection is there, as well as the presence of Allah showing that He is with His servants who recognized His Messenger and His signs and messages. In the Holy Qur’an, as well as in the Hadith our beloved prophet (pbuh) has emphasized the coming of the reformers [Mujjadids] who will come every century [one hundred years]. [Abu Dawud, Kitabul Fitan].

O Muslims, do you think that the promise of protection of the Ummah could be delayed? No, it must be accomplished with necessity, that is to say, whenever Allah finds the need to send His reformer, when Islam finds itself in danger, and when the spiritual condition of Muslims requires a Reformer. And in such times when the enemies of Islam are bitter against Islam and the Muslims with their bad plans, their plots, their writings, and their continual propaganda against Islam.

O Muslims, look at what our Muslim brothers and sisters are going through, the persecutions of Muslims around the world: the persecutions of Muslims in Myanmar (Burma) - the Rohinygas - how they are persecuted at the hands of the Burmese army [executions, rape, torture and exile]. See the persecutions of Muslims in Kashmir, Palestine, Iraq, and most recently in China, the largest prison in the world where the Chinese authorities had imprisoned over a million Muslims, and demolished their mosques, shaved their beards [by force], raped their daughters and wives, made them eat pork, prohibited them from fasting Ramadan. In short, they do everything to make them [Muslims] renounce their faith in Islam!

See also what is happening in Kashmir, where the [Indian] state has taken away their autonomy. The Indian army attacks them with guns, and shoots them. Many have died as a result and many are persecuted and are still being persecuted. Look at what is happening in Palestine, more specifically in Gaza. Thousands of Palestinians were shot and killed by the Israeli army. The latter inflicted a lot of atrocities on them, wronged them a lot. See what happened in Sri Lanka. Muslims are persecuted there; their businesses and houses have been burned down and see what is happening in India, where our brothers and sisters are beset by very harsh persecutions at the hands of the Indian authority which seeks to make India an exclusively Hindu state. This is a very hard situation for our brothers and sisters in India. When we see what is happening with Muslims around the world, it is very sad all that we [Muslims] have to endure. If I mention all of them, the list will become too long.

And the Eid-ul-Fitr Sermon too will become too long. But I only mentioned a few in order to make the Ummah of Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh) reflect and to reform itself [so that Muslims reform their conduct]. Do not take others as inferior. Do not judge the faith of others. Take stock of yourselves, your own actions, your own faith. Do not declare others as unfaithful [disbelievers] because your actions will backfire on yourselves, and even the whole of Ummah may fall in a bad situation because of your bad behaviour.

So in such situations, where the Muslim world is suffering, we have to pray a lot for our brothers and sisters who are persecuted. This is a very hard situation in their lives, where their very lives are threatened, as well as their dignity as Muslims. Look at this suffering suffered by those in distress, and on the other hand look at the pleasures and amusements that Muslim countries take, especially Saudi Arabia; see how the Saudis [those in power] are trampling on the teachings of Islam and are blind in the face of the suffering of our Muslim brothers and sisters. They make the deaf and blind, as if all this does not affect them or does not concern them. As long as they are earning a lot of money, they don’t worry about the fate of Muslims. They are behind money and false honours! They are having fun and spending a lot of money on the enemies of Islam.

So Allah saw that Muslims were in great need of a Reformer who was to come - who has already come - to fight the enemies of Islam and inspire Muslims with love and devotion to Islam. Alhamdulillah.

We say as our beloved prophet (pbuh) will say: O my Lord, truly my people have treated this Qur’an as something to be shunned.

So, it’s a true picture of Muslims today, intellectually as well as spiritually. We see how the Muslims abandoned the Holy Qur’an. We are no longer united; we are fighting among ourselves and we are divided. And by our own fault, we give Satan the green light and the space to come [and create a great abyss] between us and our brothers, to open the path of hatred (because that space has become a path, a big chasm).

So for this day of Eid-ul-Fitr I reiterate my call, the same call that I have always addressed to you: Let’s forget our differences, let us unite under the banner of La Illaaha Illallah and I advise all our Muslim brothers and sisters around the world and also the members of the Jamaat Ul Sahih Al Islam around the world that the real Eid for a person is when they make others share their joy and when they share their sorrows while relieving them, helping them and giving them their support.

May Allah make it Eid Mubarak for all of us, all the time, throughout our lives. Ameen.

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Message received on Saturday 23 May 2020 after the Salaat-ul-Zuhr:

Rabee jallazina yattabehuna shabilaka fawkallaziina kafaru feeza hit duniya wal Aakhera wajalna minhum.

O Allah, make the people who follow Your path always stay above those who disbelieve, in this world and in the hereafter, and place us among them [i.e. those who have the upper hand over the disbelievers].

Message received today [24 May 2020] after the Salaat-ul-Tahajjud:

Alkourwato illah jamia.
All power is in the hand of Allah.

Antan kradiyan wa Rahma.
You are the One Who guides and is merciful.

Dajaratim min Rabe ka.
An elevation from Your Lord.

Before the Eid-ul-Fitr prayer 

What evils does not exist, O Allah? May no one find in me, pride, ignorance, carelessness, jealousy, envy, bad thoughts about others, lies, disrespect for word given [promises], hatred, gossip and enmity. Heal me of all sickness, and You are The Healer of all those who are sick [of all illnesses]!

Hamdu lillah wa salaamun alaa ibaadihillazi nastafaa.
Glory to Allah and peace be upon His servants whom He has chosen.

----Eid-ul-Fitr Sermon of 24 May 2020 ~01 Shawwal 1441 AH delivered by Hazrat Khalifatullah Munir A. Azim (atba) of Mauritius.