Somewhere in a home for the aged, a lady sits, lonely and lamenting the fact that while he was still alive, her husband sold their family home to their son. After he passed away, the young couple started renovating the house, to the extent that the mother no longer recognised the place she had moved into as a young bride. She complained and soon thereafter, she was placed into an Old Age Home; there was no place for her in the house, or in the life of her son.
What if this couple had explained to the mother that the house is now their home and they want to change to suit them? What if they had said, “Mom, we understand howyou feel, but wont you give it a chance? It is still your home because we are a family”.
A young girl reverts to Islam, gets married and finds her new husband is a drug addict. She stays with him, raises two daughters, and receives no financial or any other kind of support from her husband. New to the Deen, she desperately looks for help, but none is forthcoming. Instead, her husband’s family blames her for her husband’s addiction and up till today, refuses to acknowledge her, or her daughters, and still refers to her by her original name.
What if the family had rallied around this young girl, what if they had shown compassion for the hard struggle she was having, what if they had shown her the truth about the Deen she had entered?
In a double-story house there lives a family on the top floor, downstairs lives the man’s mother. She has no relationship with her daughter-in-law, in spite of repeated overtures from the young woman. She barely returns a greeting and bad mouths her son’s wife at every opportunity.
What if the mother had shown some respect for her son’s choice of a wife, what if she had trusted in his good sense and judgement, what if she had been grateful for everything her daughter-in-law did for her, when her own daughters were not around?
A young girl falls in love with a man who comes into the Deen, her parents are furious, and refuses to give their permission. The girl stands firm and eventually the Nikah takes place. They are now happily married but when they visit her parents, the mother excuses herself and goes to her room, only emerging when the visit is over. On the first Eid after the Nikah, this young man accompanied his brother-in-law to Eid Salaah.
What if these people showed gratitude that their daughter was able to bring someone into the Deen of Islam, what if they felt honoured that they had raised someone so strong in belief that she could do it? What if they accepted their daughter’s choice, and got to know the qualities in their son-in-law that attracted their daughter to him?
What if the next time you get home and supper is not ready, and you feel like flying off the handle, you consider that your wife may have had an exhausting day, and is just running a little late?
What if you consider that your boss is under pressure to deliver when he makes unreasonable demand on you?
What if the next time your child does something, instead of flying off the handle, you gently try to explain to him why it was wrong, and try to get him to understand the benefit of doing the right thing.
What if you are a teacher and your class won’t quiet down; you try to engage them with something that is fun or interesting, instead of shouting above their noise, and risk sending your blood pressure sky high.
Well, consider that we are in the month of Rabbi-ul Awwal, the Mubarak month which saw the birth of the greatest mercy to mankind, the exemplary, and the most beloved to Allah, Nabi Muhammad, and (SAW). Allah says in the Quran that he did not send the Prophet (SAW), except as a mercy to mankind. The operative word is ‘mercy’ a quality that seems to be heading for extinction.
Nabi Muhammad(SAW) said: “ The merciful one” (meaning Allah), will show mercy to those who are merciful”.
In our heads we know what we are supposed to do, but our hearts are closed; there is a bridge between the heart and the brain, and we need to do some repair work so that the messages can flow through. None of us are inherently bad; we just react inappropriately when our emotions get the better of us. Perhaps it is time to dig deep and reclaim our divinity, develop compassion; we should care for our fellow creation of Allah, because Allah cares for each one of us. The first step is respect, when we respect another, caring follows, but too often we live carelessly. Our Prophet (SAW) cared deeply for people, and he cared deeply for his Ummah, up until the moment he left this Dunya.
Cyberspace experienced a traffic jam recently with all the messages being sent listing all the good qualities of our beloved Rasul (SAW). We are all aware of his good conduct and impeccable manners when he dealt with people. Suffice it to say that Al-Bakhtari said: The Messenger of Allah Ta’ala (SAW) did not revile any of the believers but he prayed that it might become expiation and a mercy for them.
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When we follow the Rasul (SAW), when we show mercy and compassion, none of the above situations, and many others, would arise.
In a collection of the pearls of wisdom that issued from the Prophet’s (SAW) lips, the foreword was written by Mahatma Ghandi. He has this to say: "I have read...the sayings of the Prophet with much interest and profit. They are among the treasures of Mankind, not merely Muslims.... A reverent study of the sayings of the different teachers of mankind is a step in the direction of.... mutual respect."
Of course we are not overwhelmed by the fact that non-Muslims see the perfection of character of Rasulullah (SAW); but we need to remember that He was sent to mankind, not just to the Muslims. We must not only list his virtues, we have to follow them, and we need to truly walk in the Sunnah.
Nabi Muhammad (SAW) is our perfect example; in fact, we are commanded by Allah (SWT) to follow the Sunnah, and if we do, we cannot go wrong.
In Surah 3.164 and 62.2 of the Holy Quran, Allah speaks of how he favoured us by sending us Rasulullah (SAW), so that he may teach us wisdom.
During this month the sound of the Ashrakal resounds through our lives, and the Salawat is recited in homes and the Masajid and how wonderful and beautiful it is.
What if we showed our gratitude to Allah for the mercy he favoured us with?
What if we obeyed Allah when Allah says In Surah Imraan: “Say, (O Muhammad, to mankind); If ye love Allah, follow me; Allah will love you and forgive your sins. Allah is forgiving and Merciful. Say: Obey Allah and the messenger. But if they turn away, lo! Allah loveth not the disbelievers (in his guidance).Quran: Surah Aali Imran; Verse 31-32.