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Discourse 2 - Durood and Salaam

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الحمد لله و كفى و سلام على عباده الذين اصطفى ، أما بعد :

It is mentioned in the hadeeth that Allah Ta’ala has commanded a group of angels to disperse on the earth and present the greetings and salutations recited upon Nabi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) to Nabi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam). They convey the greeting and say, “So and so, the child of so and so, has recited this greeting and salutation for you.” Nabi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) becomes pleased and replies to the greeting.

Now a person may question that since we are reciting durood for a lengthy period, how is it that we have not seen any angels? The answer is that ‘seeing’ is not a pre-condition for existence. To ‘see’ or ‘witness’ something physical and use this as the benchmark for acceptance, is a grave error. Our rationale should be that whatever Nabi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) has stated, is sufficient for us to accept.

Operation Imaan

On one occasion, I had visited a certain place. After performing Maghrib salaah, I was confronted by a person who very brusquely asked me, “Moulana, I wish to ask you a question. Tell me. Where is Allah Ta’ala? If He exists, then why is it that I cannot see Him? Until I do not perceive Him with my five senses of perception, I will not accept His existence.”

“This answer requires a detailed explanation and I cannot answer you whilst standing here on the road. I am residing at a certain place. Please come there and we will discuss this matter.”

“Bravo, Moulana,” he replied sarcastically. “For one small mas’alah, I will have to present myself in your royal court!”

From this one statement of his, I understood his complete temperament and what kind of person he was.

“If you had studied medicine and then excelled in the field of surgery, say eye surgery, and here, whilst standing on the road, someone comes up to you and says, ‘Doctor, I have a cataract in my eye, and since you are an expert in this field, please operate on me now.’ What will you say to him?”

“You will say,” I continued, “Brother, operations are not done in this fashion. You will have to first gain admission into a hospital. Thereafter, your system will be cleansed. Your eyelashes will be cut. You will be made to lie down. Your eye will be anaesthetised, and only then can the operation be conducted. After the operation, a bandage will be tied around your eyes and you will have to remain motionless for many hours. You will not be allowed to walk or talk to anyone. Operations on the eye are done in this fashion and if he retorts ‘Bravo, Doctor! For a minor matter also I will have to present myself in your royal court,’ what will you say to him? If you operate on him there and then, then you have betrayed your profession. You will in all likelihood damage his eye. Needless to say, if the government learns of your action they will confiscate your diploma and punish you accordingly.”

After presenting this example, he agreed to meet me at my place of residence. These people do not understand the reality of proofs. They understand examples very quickly but not proofs.

Moulana Abdul Hay رحمة الله عليه and Sir Sayyid Sahib

Moulana Abdul Hay Lucknowy رحمة الله عليه was travelling by train. Sir Sayyid Ahmad Khan, who was travelling with his dog, happened to be on the same train and in the same compartment.

“What kind of a person are you that you keep a dog with you?” Moulana رحمة الله عليه snapped.

“I have heard the Ulama say,” he explained “that the angels do not come to a place where a dog is kept. I keep this dog with me so that the angel of death will not come near me.”

Moulana Abdul Hay رحمة الله عليه calmly replied, “A certain angel is appointed to take away the lives of dogs. That angel will take your life away.”

They both had heard of one another but they had not met before.

“Are you Moulana Abdul Hay رحمة الله عليه?” Sir Sayyid enquired.

“Are you Sir Sayyid?”

That was the first meeting between them. The matter was self-explanatory and did not require further clarification.

The selfish hound

Someone asked Moulana Thanwi رحمة الله عليه the reason for the impermissibility of rearing dogs. Moulana رحمة الله عليه replied that the angels of mercy do not frequent homes where a dog is kept. He could not digest this reason. His intellect failed to comprehend it.

So Moulana Thanwi رحمة الله عليه replied that a dog does not have a sense of well-wishing even for its own kind. It cannot tolerate another dog coming into its alley or lane, even though that dog may be from its own breed. The individual accepted this reasoning. This was the comprehensible reasoning, but not the actual reason, whereas the actual sensible reason he could not accept.

Five senses

(Continuing with the incident of the person to whom the explanation of the eye operation was given) Anyway, as agreed that person arrived on a certain day and introduced himself.

“Very well, I am free and so are you, go ahead, and ask your questions,” I said in a soft tone.

“Where is Allah?” he demanded. “If He exists, why can I not see Him? Until I cannot see Him using my five senses, I will not accept His existence.”

“It seems to me that you have heard these words from another source, by hearted it without understanding its meaning and you are now quoting it like a parrot. A parrot repeats words and phrases without understanding its meaning,” I replied calmly.

He did not like this answer and retorted, “What makes you say that I do not understand the meaning of my questions?”

“I say this because if I ask you to explain your question, you will not be able to do so.”

“I most certainly can explain my question,” he objected. “Ask me anything you want to know.”

I glanced at him. “What are the five things with which you desire to see Allah Ta’ala?”

“The five senses; sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch.”

“Only the faculty of sight has been created for seeing, not the other four,” I corrected him. “If you ask a small child which sense he uses to see things, he will reply, with his eyes. Tell him that he sees with his ears and he will reject it. Ears are used for hearing, not seeing. Ask him whether he sees with his nose, he will say no. The nose is for smelling, not seeing. Ask him if he can see with his tongue, he will tell you that you are wrong. The tongue is used for tasting, not seeing. Ask him whether he sees with his hands, he will again say no. The hand is for touching, not seeing. The point is that a small child understands these things whereas you, a learned person, a graduate – Allah Ta’ala alone knows how many degrees you have acquired – do not know these minor aspects.”

Have you seen your liver?

Thereafter, I continued explaining to him in this manner till he accepted my statement. I then requested him to rephrase his question.

“Where is Allah Ta’ala?” he muttered. “If He exists, why can I not see Him? Until I do not see him with my eyes, I will not accept His existence.”

“Four of the five pillars of your question’s tent have fallen away, yet you are so rigid in your understanding?” I pointed out. “Tell me, do you accept the existence of all the things in the world only if you see them and if you cannot see them do you then reject them? Did you see your ear? You may have seen its reflection in the mirror but you have not seen your ear. If someone says that you do not have ears, you will disagree whereas you have not really seen them. Have you seen your eyes? You may have seen your eyes’ reflection in the mirror but you have not seen your eyes. If someone says that you are blind, what will you say? Have you seen your neck? Have you seen your tongue? Have you seen your back? Have you seen your heart within your bosom? Have you seen your liver? You have not seen any of these organs. You may have seen these bodily parts of other people but you have not seen your own bodily parts. If someone says that you do not have any of these, you will not be prepared to accept it.

“Tell me,” I queried. “How many people reside in this town?”

“136 000.” His reply could easily be construed as an act of defiance.

“Have you seen every resident?” He remained silent.

“Have you seen the light of your eyes?” I queried, probingly. “You have seen the pupils of your eye in a mirror but the light therein, which is called sight, have you seen it? You cannot even see it in a mirror but you have it. In fact you are convinced that you have sight whereas you have not seen it.”

I presented numerous other examples, none of which he could refute. However, I understood that his heart still refused to accept the truth. I then asked him his name and his father’s name. He answered accordingly.

“Have you seen the fatherhood of your father? You have seen a person but have you seen the basis for which you have referred to him as your father?” There was a deafening silence.

A hollow claim

“What a mammoth statement you have made. I will not believe in its existence until I see it!

“Tell me, have you seen the president of India? Have you seen Makkah? Have you seen Madinah? Have you seen England? You have not seen any of these with your eyes but you are convinced of their existence.” The truth was slowly dawning upon him.

I continued, “Very well! Tell me. Initially you wanted to see Allah Ta’ala using all five senses. We have terminated the possibility of seeing Him using four of the senses. But does this render these senses futile? Are you now declaring the sense of sight as useful and rendering the other four futile? You will only accept something if you see it! So if you acquire knowledge via the other four senses, will you not accept it? Your conclusion is that from the five senses, only one is useful and the others are futile? So to what degree will this claim: ‘Until I do not see with my eyes, I will not accept,’ be correct? This claim is palpably incorrect. In future, do not discuss such matters with intelligent people. Phrase your question in this way,” I suggested. “Can we see Allah Ta’ala or not?”

“Very well. Inform me about this,” he said.

“Yes, we will see Allah Ta’ala”, I assured him. “But tell me, if you wish to see the president of America, sitting here in India, will you be able to see him? You will not be able to see him. You will have to first undertake a journey, using different conveyances, to that country. You will have to apply for a visa and passport. Upon your arrival, the customs will search your luggage to ensure that you are not carrying anything illegal. You will then have to learn their language, don their attire, build up some form of contact with the president’s associates and then perhaps you might get a chance of seeing him whereas he is just a human being like you.”

Off to meet the king

“Now sitting here in India, when you are unable to see a human being like yourself, how do you expect to see the King of all kings who is the Creator of the universe?

“You will have to first traverse the trial of the grave. There, Munkar and Nakeer will interrogate and test you to see if you had brought anything illegal from the dunya. You will be kept in transit therein for a period of time. Thereafter, you will be brought to the plains of resurrection where a complete reckoning will be taken and all your actions will suddenly appear before you to be weighed. Allah Ta’ala alone knows whether we will receive our book of deeds in the right hand or the left.

“Thereafter, you will have to cross the pul-siraat and eventually you will be able to see Allah Ta’ala. Even this earthly body and eyes will be of no benefit. They will perish and you will receive a different set of body, eyes, brains, and strength. This body is designed for this world. Thousands of illnesses affect it and we have to seek the proper medical attention to cure them. Youth terminates and we become old. Happiness in this world is temporary and is often followed by grief. The point is that in this world various calamities and difficulties affect you.

“In the hereafter, they will not exist. Over there, you will be granted such youth, which will not attain old age, such strength after which there will be no weakness, such health that will not be affected by any ailments and such a life after which there will be no death.”

The truthful informer

“The truthful informer, Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) has informed us that seeing the gracious countenance of Allah Ta’ala is one of the greatest bounties of Jannah.

“After the reckoning will take place, an announcement will be made that everyone should seek the refuge of that object which they had taken as a deity in this world. Some people had worshipped the moon, others the sun, fire and water. They will be instructed to seek refuge from their false deities. The Muslims, who had worshipped Allah Ta’ala alone, will remain. A form will appear before them and claim: ‘I am your deity, sustainer.’

“On seeing it the Muslims will deny and say, ‘No, you are not our deity.’

“Thereafter another Being will become manifest and declare, ‘I am your Sustainer,’ upon which everyone will fall in prostration.”

Sayyid Abdul Aziz Dabbaagh’s رحمة الله عليه answer to an objection

At this juncture, a scholarly objection is made that when the first form will appear and claim to be Allah Ta’ala, why will the Muslims refute it? They had not seen Allah Ta’ala before nor did they ever hear his voice. The hereafter is a place of truth. Hence, why will they then deny it and why will they immediately fall in prostration on hearing the second voice, saying, “Yes, YOU are our Sustainer?”

Hadhrat Sayyid Abdul Aziz Dabbaagh رحمة الله عليه has given the answer to this objection. He says that while living in the dunya, we experience the favours, bounties, mercy, kindness and compassion of Allah Ta’ala. The voice of the first form will be harsh and devoid of mercy and compassion. This will be the reason for their denial.

A father calls for his son, who is in another room, and he answers in a cruel and harsh voice saying, “Yes!”

The father thinks to himself that my son does not talk harshly to me, therefore, he could not have answered in this manner. Someone else must have answered. Similarly, the tone of the first voice will be harsh whilst the second will be filled with mercy and compassion, the like of which they had experienced in the world.

In the hereafter, we will see Allah Ta’ala. Here in this world we do not have the ability of seeing Him. We cannot even see the sun, which is His creation, when it has reached its zenith. The strength of our eyes is very weak. We cannot see Allah Ta’ala using them. We will be able to see Him using another set of eyes.

A gift to the beloved

We have to bring within ourselves the conviction that whatever Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) has said is true.

“Whoever recites durood on Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) from whichever part of the world, the angels convey it to Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) exactly in the manner it was read.”

If we recite durood at the blessed grave of Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam), he hears it directly; this is established in a hadeeth of Baihaqi. It is also mentioned in another hadeeth,

“Whoever recites durood on me by my grave, I can hear him and whoever reads durood upon me from afar, it is conveyed to me.”

Therefore, we should not place our confidence and reliance on our eyes. The aspect to place our confidence in is the blessed sayings of Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam), whether we are able to see it or not.

Tonight is the night of jumu’ah. Recitation of durood on jumu’ah and the night of jumu’ah has been emphasised upon in the hadeeth. Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) becomes extremely pleased when anyone reads durood upon him. Therefore, recite durood as much as possible. Actually, we should be continuously reciting durood. May Allah bless us with the correct taufeeq. Aameen.

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