It’s always a surprise, but sadly not a shock to see Muslims make every excuse under then sun to not fight Fi’Sabeel’Allah to change the miserable condition that the majority of Muslims live under the world over.
The Akh is well versed with Muslim attitudes in Britain, but after a recent trip to the confederacy of the United Arab Emirates, I was surprised but not shocked to see the bubble that people live in, totally oblivious to what’s happening literally in their bordering states.
As my Jumma reminder, first and foremost directed to myself before anyone else, I was reading the following passage from Surah At Tauba (Surah 9, Verses 86-99) from the Holy Qu’ran, and felt compelled to share;
86 When a Surah comes down enjoining them to believe in Allah and to strive and fight along with his apostle those with wealth and influence among them ask thee for exemption and say: “Leave us (behind): we would be with those who sit (at home).”
88 But the apostle and those who believe with him strive and fight with their wealth and their persons: for them are (all) good things: and it is they who will prosper. 1340
90 And there were among the desert Arabs (also) Men who made excuses and came to claim exemption; and those who were false to Allah and His apostle (Merely) sat inactive. Soon will a grievous penalty seize the unbelievers among them. 1342
93 The ground (of complaint) is against such as claim exemption while they are rich. They prefer to stay with the (women) who remain behind: Allah hath sealed their hearts; so they know not (what they miss). 1345
94 They will present their excuses to you when ye return to them. Say thou: “Present no excuses: we shall not believe you: Allah hath already informed us of the true state of matters concerning you: it is your actions that Allah and His apostle will observe: in the end will ye be brought back to Him who knoweth what is hidden and what is open: then will He show you the truth of all that ye did.
95 They will swear to you by Allah when ye return to them that ye may leave them alone. So leave them alone: For they are an abomination and Hell is their dwelling place a fitting recompense for the (evil) that they did.
96 They will swear unto you that ye may be pleased with them but if ye are pleased with them Allah is not pleased with those who disobey.
97 The Arabs of the desert are the worst in unbelief and hypocrisy and most fitted to be in ignorance of the command which Allah hath sent down to his apostle: but Allah is All-Knowing All-Wise.
98 Some of the desert Arabs Look upon their payments as a fine and watch for disasters for you: on them be the disaster of evil: for Allah is He that heareth and knoweth (all things). 1346
99 But some of the desert Arabs believe in Allah and The Last Day and look on their payments as pious gifts bringing them nearer to Allah and obtaining the prayers of the apostle. Aye indeed they bring them nearer (to Him): soon will Allah admit them to His Mercy: for Allah is Oft- Forgiving Most Merciful. 1347
1340 “Good things,” and “prosperity,” are to be understood both in the physical and in the highest spiritual sense.
1342 Not only had the Hypocrites a nest in Madinah, but their tactics affected some of the village or desert Bedouins, who loved war and would have followed a standard of war even if no question of Faith or a sacred Cause was involved. But some of them, though professing Islam, were frightened by the hardships of the Tabuk expedition and the prospect of meeting the trained armies of the great Roman (Byzantine) Empire. They made all sorts of lying excuses, but really their want of faith made them ineligible for being enlisted in a sacred Cause. Some came to make excuses: other did not even come , but sat at home, ignoring the summons.
1345 Where similar phrases are used for a similar shirking of duty by towns-folk, while here we are considering the desert folk. It is not only a duty, but a precious privilege, to serve a great Cause by personal self-sacrifice. Those who shirk such an opportunity know not what they miss. (9.93)
1346 The payments refer to the regular Charity established by Islam-the obligatory alms. If you look upon them as a fine or a burden, their virtue is lost. If you rejoice that you have there an opportunity of helping the Community to maintain its standards of public assistance and to suppress the unseemly beggary and loathsome importunity whose relief is only governed by motives of getting rid of awkward obstacles on the way, then your outlook is entirely different. You wish for organised and effective efforts to solve the problems of human poverty and misery. In doing so, you get nearer to Allah, and you earn the good wishes and prayers of godly men, led by our holy Leader Al-Mustafa. (9.98)
1347 The Mercy of Allah is always present, as the sun is always shining. But when we have prepared ourselves to receive it, we come to the full enjoyment of it, as a man who was in a shade comes out by his effort into the open, and basks in sunshine.
Though active service in person or by contributing resources is expected of every person who believes in the Cause, there are some who must necessarily be exempted without the least blame attaching to them. Such would be those who are weak in body on account of age, sex, infirmity, or illness. Personal service in their case is out of the question, but they could contribute towards expenses if they are able. But if they are too poor to afford even such assistance, they are excused.
In all cases the motive must be sincere, and there should be a desire to serve and do such duty as they can.
With such motives people are doing good or right in whatever form they express their service: sometimes, in Milton’s words, “they also serve who only stand and wait.” In any case their purity of motive would get Allah’s grace and forgiveness.
As always may you and yours have a safe weekend and remember this Ummah in your duah’s and let those prayers translate into moving your limbs into action Fi’Sabeel’Allah, for prayer without an action to back it up becomes insincere.