Syrian scholar dismantles religious extremism

This post is to share with you an extract from a recent Friday sermon by veteran traditional scholar Muhammad Sa’eed Ramadhan Al Bouti at the historic Great Mosque of Damascus also known as the Umayyad Mosque. (جامع بنى امية الكبير )

Here is the video with English subtitles.

Translation:

“I Remind you, O servants of Allah ,  The Constitution of Islam is the book of God Almighty which was revealed to the Final Messenger , and our model in the implementation of this Constitution,  is the beloved prophet Muhammad (PBUH)   The practical application of the Constitution in the daily life is called Sharia. Consider these multiple sources.

The constitution of Islam, the Koran, which I never saw in it but warnings against fanaticism, extremism and criminal terrorism. It raised the prophet in the light of mercy and forgiveness.  The Book of Allah Almighty told His Messenger: (It is by God’s grace that you were gentle with them — for if you had been harsh and hard-hearted, they would surely have deserted you – so bear with them, pray for forgiveness for them and take counsel with them in the conduct of affairs.[Al-Imran: 159].

This direction to His Messenger is not specific to Muslims, but to all he has been sent to. Is it not the Book of Allah Almighty that laid down the scales of justice free from racial, prejudicial, or religious partialities?(Let not the hatred of others turns you away from justice; Deal justly; that is closer to piety) [Maa-ida: 8]

The book of God Almighty did defend a Jewish person with ten verses when he was accused of a theft charge  while he was innocent and the thief was a Muslim?! Those verses started with the following: [We have sent the Book down to you  with the truth so that you may judge  among mankind by means of what God has shown you. And do not be an advocate for the treacherous. Al Nisaa: 105].

This is the Constitution speaking.  If anyone fights against extremism and terrorism,  you cannot find in the whole world  and in the history of all times,  such as the Book of Allah Almighty fights against extremism and terrorism. And Muhammad the Lord raised him  in the light of mercy and forgiveness. Examine his life career from beginning to end,  You can find only just opposite to what the Book of Almighty is being accused. Didn’t  that polytheist Bedouin challenged the Messenger seizing the opportunity in the valley of full of trees on returning from a battle. Kicking foot, he wakes him up and says:  Who would save you from me, O Muhammad?  The prophet Replied quietly: “Allah”. The sword fell from the hands of the Bedouin and he sat scared and shaken. What did the Messenger ? Pardoned and calmed him down, the Bedouin returned to his people and said: “I have come to you from the best of mankind.” Muhammad is the Messenger of God,  who was brought up by the Almighty  in the light of mercy, forgiveness, moderation.

He is the one who treated all people as they are shown in public. , He did not penetrate into their private affairs; He did not keep secret eye on any one to turn a blind eye to their outward appearances.  There were many hypocrites in the city, how did the Messenger (PBUH) deal with them?   How did he treat the man who said on an occasion which I do not want to talk about its details:  “We and the robes of Quraish are like the saying:  Make your dog fat, it will eat you” By God If we return to al-Madina, the noble will surely expel the humble.” His son, a true Muslim, Abdullah ibn Ubay Bin Salool said: O Messenger of Allah I have heard that you want to eliminate my father because of his statements, if so, command me please I will come to you with his head.  Smiled the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) and said,

‘No, we deal with him friendly on what happened between us “ When he died, and his son Abdullah sent to the Messenger,  begging for the shirt worn by the prophet (PBUH) to be shrouded by his father which he hoped  It will make things easier for him in the hereafter. The Messenger of Allah did send it.

Moreover when he was brought for funeral prayer, the Prophet (PBUH) stood to pray  while his companion Omar (R) whispered in his ear:  ‘O Messenger of Allah do you pray for a person who said so and so and did so and so’. The Messenger did not pay any attention to it, when Omar (RA) continued the prophet (PBUH) turned to him and said: Leave me Umar, Allah gave me choices. And I chose this (to pray for him,) The Messenger (PBUH) prayed for bin Ubayy ibn Salool.

This is our example after the Constitution, which I told you about, do you see in his whole life a smell of extremism or of terrorism, O servants of Allah?!Next Come and look at the biographies of the companions who lived in the shade of Islamic law that stems from Quran and Sunnah, How did they live their life? After the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) many groups emerged straying away from the way of the book of Allah Almighty, Juhamiyya, Murjia, Muathazila and others, listen well, O slaves of Allah and contemplate.  Do you find the companions call them unbelievers?! Do you find accusation of infidelity which blows these days here and there against those who went astray from Ahl Sunna Wal Jamaa?

We do not know – Even after a thorough study and analysis of the history – that the companions of the Messenger (PBUH) charged these groups with infidelity.  No, But we find forgiveness and tolerance Do you smell extremism or terrorism in the lives of the companions?  No. You cannot find it.  Consider biographies of their followers, look and examine, their approach has been aligned with

The constitution of Islam, the Quran, and the life of the beloved Messenger (PBUH), Look at the position of Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal – There are people who attribute the allegation to Imam Ahmad.  You know the story of ordeal that took place  on Imam Ahmad, when this ordeal took place in the age of Mutawakkil some of his disciples came and said to him: Sir, pray to God Against Ibn Abi Duat –  one of the Mu’tazilah who inflated the fire against Imam Imam Ahmad replied: What benefit you have in punishing your brother on the Day of Resurrection because of you? He raised his hands and prayed in favour of for Ibn Abi Daat, and all those who caused the plight that took place on him.

Servants of Allah: This is our Islam represented by its constitution and the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). Do you find anything other than kindness, Just opposite to what Islam and Muslims are accused of?”

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Model of India’s biggest mosque unveiled – IANS

Kozhikode (Kerala), Jan 30, (IANS)
The model of what is billed as India’s biggest mosque — accommodating 25,000 in its courtyard — was unveiled here Monday.


The mosque is to come up in a 40 acres near here and the complex will also house a heritage museum, convention halls, and a media centre, according to the Jamia Markazu Ssaquafathi Ssunniyya headed by Muslim scholar Kanthapuram A.P. Aboobaker Musliyar, who unveiled the model here.

“The heritage museum is for the protection and exhibition of all such holy remnants of prophets and men of Islamic importance, and this will surely add a new dimension to the cultural life of Kerala,” said Musliyar.

Speaking to IANS, an official of the Markaz said that the work on the mosque is expected to begin in April and would be completed in 18 months time.

“The cost of the project is estimated to be Rs.40 crore and will come through public contributions. The feature of the mosque is that initially it would be an open one and would more or less resemble the famed Jama Masjid in Delhi,” said the official who did not wish to be identified.

Musliyar heads the popular social, charity and educational organisation based here, which has taught more than 30,000 students from various states in the country in the last three decades.

Three years back, the Markaz was in the news when more than 100 children from Kashmir were brought here for basic education.

Delhi’s Jama Masjid is currently India’s biggest mosque

http://www.deccanherald.com/content/223164/model-indias-biggest-mosque-unveiled.html

Is Arabic Language Under Threat?

Publishers worry Arabic is under threat  – Gulf News
A debate in Sharjah dealt with the threat that Arabic faces today as a mother tongue.

It is meaningless to be stubborn about the language. Although it is quite natural to love ones’ mother tongue, it needs to be reasonable and restrained. Language should not cause riot but rapport among people. In Islamic perspective all languages are gifts from the God as Adam(PBUH), the first man on earth, was taught all the languages by the Almighty Allah. No language will die as long as it avails for easy and effective communication and it should die otherwise. Survival of the Fittest!
As for Arabic language, it has stood the test of time and will last until a single Muslim remains on earth. Islam uses Arabic as its language for rites and rituals and Friday sermons all over the world are delivered in Arabic since the prophet’s days except a few isolated instances of recent times . The only exception was in Turkey at the time of Turkish nationalization by Mustafa Kemal Ataturk. Traditionally Muslims consider Arabic as an integral part of their religion and that is why she remains active and alive today unlike her good old sisters.

On the other hand, the beloved messenger (PBUH)has already prophesied that the last day will not come untill a single man can correctly utter the word ‘Allah!’ An international conspiracy is very much suspected to eradicate this language with support from some anti-Islamic media corporations. Muslims who support these movements out of their own erratic conclusions like who call for performing rituals in local languages should eventually stand guilty for their negligence. Some people in the Arab world went to the extreme to prefer English and other foreign languages for Friday sermons saying that they follow sermons delivered in these languages better. It calls for reviewing and renewing their  loyalty to the religion of Islam.
We Hope the recent campaigns across the Arab world will boost the language and will help it maintain its esteemed historical status among world languages.

Recent Letters to the Gulf News, Dubai

I am pleased to share with you my two letters to the Gulf News Daily published from Dubai, UAE. They are abridged versions of two earlier posts in this blog.

The way to unity

The biggest threat to Islam is neither secularism nor Christianity but preachers like Dr Zakir Naik, who argue without knowing the basic principles of the religion (“Secularism a threat to Islam, Naik says”, Gulf News, August 23). According to him, “if you know just one word” you preach and no further qualification is needed. Strangely enough he suggests the sole solution for Muslim unity is to go directly to the Quran and the Hadith. The way to unity is to follow the rich traditions of Islam. The Quran and Sunnah need sound and profound scholarship to understand and interpret correctly. It is shocking to hear him say: “Every Muslim should be a terrorist to the anti-Muslim racist.” It is not Islamic at all and goes against the teachings of the Prophet Mohammad (PBUH). None should be terrified to see a Muslim. But everyone should be captivated and attracted by their noble character. Islam has spread across the world by the sublime qualities of its followers and not by hateful words or dreadful swords. http://gulfnews.com/opinions/letters/letters-august-28-2010-1.673945

No compromise
Do we Muslims need a mosque at Ground Zero (“Obama at the centre of cultural clash over Ground Zero mosque”, Gulf News, August 15)? I personally don’t think so, especially if people out there are not comfortable with the concept. We can build mosques anywhere but without compromising the feelings of our neighbours! We need peace and tranquillity for all. That is what this great religion is all about. What Muslims would like to erect at ground zero is a suitable memorial in honour of the innocent victims of the September 11 attack. A 13-storey building named Cordoba House is said to have public facilities for athletics, arts, performances, lectures series, forums and weddings, as well as a prayer space, which makes opponents frown at! It has got support from New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and the US President Barack Obama. With all its political and moral support, we need to maintain that it should not irk the people of the land and we hold high the fact that there should be no compromise on peace.http://gulfnews.com/opinions/letters/latters-august-22-2010-1.671273

A Mosque at Ground Zero?

Major two broadcasters in the US i.e. CBS and NBC refused to air the notorious hate ad which is based on zero ground against the so called ‘mosque at ground zero’!

Do we Muslims need a mosque at Ground Zero? I personally feel No, if the people out there are not comfortable with it. We can build mosque anywhere but without compromising the feelings of our neighbors! We need peace and tranquility for all. That is what this great religion is all about.

At the time of  Hudaibiyya treaty the Beloved Messenger set a sublime model for dealing with the people who are not aligned with our ideology. Almost every article of the pact prima facie went against Muslims and they had to suffer greatly to cope with. The prophet and His followers showed unmatched tolerance for the sake of Peace.

Islamic History portraits the Great Caliph Umar (May Allah Bless him) declining to perform his prayers inside the church despite his Christian counterpart’s insistence just because that public might take it wrongly and cost peace sometime in the future!

But what Muslims would like to erect there at ground zero is a suitable memorial in honor of 3000 innocent victims of 9/11 attack. 13 story building named as Cordoba House is said to be having public facilities for athletics, arts, performances, lectures series, forums and weddings, as well as a prayer space which makes opponents frown at! It is said that “The Islamic center is supported by most politicians in Manhattan and by religious leaders of many faiths. It has the support of New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and state Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, now the state’s Democratic gubernatorial candidate”. See here what the Mayor has said on the issue. http://sify.com/news/new-york-mayor-defends-proposed-ground-zero-mosque-news-international-kf4u4ddaiic.html

With all its political and moral support, we need to maintain that it should not cause any irk to the people of the area and we hold high that No Compromise on Comprehensive Peace. Peace be upon You!