I was settling into the rhythm of Ramadhan when Gaza got bombarded by Israel, aerial invasion, ground invasion etc etc. the bloodshed is still ongoing. the numbers of the dead are rising daily. rage, anger, disgust, sadness, helplessness. in equal turns.
it is easy to give in to raw hate, at this stage, as image after image flashes on the tv screen, online in social media - of the dead, bloodied bodies splayed, children, men, women, indiscriminate indeed are their weapons.
in this hapless helpless situation i find comfort in His words - Surah Al - Maidah - 5: 8
O YOU who have attained to faith! Be ever steadfast in your devotion to God, bearing witness to the truth in all equity; and never let hatred of any-one lead you into the sin of deviating from justice. Be just: this is closest to being God-conscious. And remain conscious of God: verily, God is aware of all that you do.
or Abdullah Yusuf Ali -
O ye who believe! stand out firmly for Allah, as witnesses to fair dealing, and let not the hatred of others to you make you swerve to wrong and depart from justice. Be just: that is next to piety: and fear Allah. For Allah is well-acquainted with all that ye do.
I find comfort in the fact that there is a reminder for restraint, a strong case for justice. in the throes of emotion, when reason is thrust aside, there is a call for calm - for justice, for reason to prevail. there is solace in the reminder - remain conscious of God and there is comfort in the fact that God is aware of all that you do. when there is consciousness of God, there is a sudden humility, a sense of keredhaan that washes over you, He knows, you remind yourself, He is Most Just. So you calm down, you do your best with what you have, and let Him do the rest.
You may not be able to bear arms, you may grow hoarse in chiding the collective governments run by Muslims, you may tear your hair out at the glaring disunity of the ummah, the lameness of OIC (Oh i see aptly quipped by Tun M), but then you take a deep breath, and you remember that this is Ramadhan, this is the last 10 nights and you have life in you and your two hands to beseech Him (and none is Mightier than Him), you have a forehead to meet the ground, so lets pray our hearts out. and lets click and send whatever monetary aid we can for our brothers and sisters in Gaza. IRF, Mercy Malaysia, Aman Palestin, May Allah make it easy on you just as you have made it easy for others to help.
And amidst the senselessness of Gaza bleeding, MH 17 was shot down. Ya Allah! What a test. Another trial as nation we face after MH370. Lahad Datu. Internal political bickering. Gutter politics. Ya Rabb, please make the hearts of the Believers in Gaza steadfast on the Straight Path, the path of your Mercy Ya Allah. Instill in their hearts patience Ya Rabb, and grant them Jannah Ya Allah. Ya Allah, place the souls of the Believers in MH17 amongst the souls of Believers whom You are pleased with Ya Rabb, Ya Wadud, Ya Rahman Ya Rahim. Ya Allah, unite this ummah Ya Rabb, open up the hearts and eyes of our Muslim leaders Ya Rabb, unite our hearts for Your sake in a way that is most pleasing to You Ya Allah. You are the All Knowing, All Wise, All Praise is due to You, Ya Allah. Lord of All creation.
While waiting in the waiting room of the Ortho Department just now, i was reading Sayyid Qutb "In The Shade of the Quran".
There is an excellent analysis of Surah Al Fajr (The Dawn) which discusses and highlights faulty human understanding of Divine Will ) pages 165 - 166. -
"Your Lord surely observes all". He sees, records, holds to account and rewards according to a strict and accurate measure which neither errs, nor exceeds the limits of justice. It is never deceived by appearances because it judges the essence of things. Human measures and standards are liable to all sorts of errors. Man sees nothing beyond appearances unless he adopts the Divine measure.
"As for man, whenever his Lord tries him with honour and with favours He bestows on him, he says "My Lord has honoured me" But whenever He tries him by stinting his means, the he says "My Lord has left me humiliated". Such is man's thinking about the various forms of trial Allah may set for him, be it comfort or hardship, wealth or scarcity. Allah may test him with comforts, honour, wealth or position but he does not realise the probationary nature of what he is given. Rather he considers the gesture as proof that he deserves to be honoured by Allah and as evidence that He has chosen him as a special honour.
It is a line of thinking which mistakes trial for reward and test for result. It imagines honour in the sight of Allah to be measured by the amount of worldly comforts given to a certain person. Allah may also try a man by stinting his means, and man again mistakes trial for reward and imagines the test to be retribution. He feels that Allah has made him poor in order to humiliate him.
In both situations the human concept is faulty. Wealth and poverty are two forms of a test Allah sets out for his servants.
A test with abundance reveals whether a man is humble and thankful to his Lord or arrogant and haughty, while a trial of the opposite kind reveals his patient acceptance or his irritability and fretfulness. A man's reward is given according to what he proves himself to be. What he is given or denied of worldly comforts is not his reward, and a man's standing in the sight of Allah is in no way related to his possessions, for He gives and denies worldly comforts regardless of whether a man is good or bad.
A man devoid of faith cannot comprehend the wisdom behind Allah's action of giving worldly comforts or denying them. But when his mind is enlightened with faith and truth becomes apparent to him, he realizes the triviality of worldly riches and the value of the reward after the test. So he works for this reward whether he is tried with abundance or scarcity of worldly riches. As he disregards the hollow considerations of wealth and poverty, he feels reassured about his fate and his position in the sight of Allah."