Islam Comes to Transform People

BismillahirRahmanirRahim 

Alhamdulillah, Alhamdulillah, Alhamdulillahi Rabbil Alamin. Wasalatu wa salamu ala rasulina Muhammadin wa ala alihi wa sahbihi ajmain nahmadulllahu ta’ala wa nastaghfiruhu wa nashadu an-lailaha ilallahu wahdahu la sharika lah wa nashadu anna sayyidina Muhammadin abduhu wa habibuhu wa rasuluhu salallahu alayhi wa ala alihi wa azwajihi wa ashabihi wa atbaihi.

Khulafail Rashidin mahdin min ba’di wuzerail immeti alal tahkik. Khususan minhum alal amidi khulafai rasulillahi ala tahqeeq. Umara il mu’mineen. Hazreti abu bakr wa umar wa uthman wa ali. Wa ala baqiyati wa sahabai wa tabieen, ridwanallahu ta’ala alayhim ajmain.Ya ayyuhal mu’minun al hadirun, ittaqullaha ta’ala wa ati’uh. Inna allaha ma allathina-ttaqaw wal-lathina hum muhsinun. Alhamdulillahi Rabbil Alameen. Wa Salatu wa Salamu ala Ashrafil Ambiya’i wa Imam al-Mursaleen, Sayyidina wa Mawlana Muhammadin wa ala alihi wa sahbihi ajmain. Alhamdulillahi Rabbil Alameen. Wa Salatu wa Salamu ala Ashrafil Ambiya’i wa Imam al-Mursaleen Sayyidina wa Mawlana Muhammadin wa ala alihi wa sahbihi ajmain.

All praises are due to Allah, Lord of the Universes. All praises are due to Allah, other than Whom there is no other ilah; Who knows both what is hidden and what can be witnessed; He is the Most Compassionate and Merciful.

May all peace and blessings be upon the Sayyid of the Arabs and the Ajam, the Imam of the Two Sanctuaries, the Grandfather of Hasan and Huseyin, Sayyidina Muhammad (AS), and upon his noble family and blessed companions, especially upon the Four Khulafa-e-Rashideen, Hz. Abu Bakr el-Siddiq, Hz. Umar el-Faruq, Hz. Osman el-Ghani, and Hz. Ali el-Murtaza, and all those who follow them until the Last Day.

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Ya Ayyuhal Mu’minoon! We have entered into the First Jummah of the Month of Shawwal. With the blessings of Allah (SWT), we passed through the three holiest months of Islam, Rajab, Shaban, and Ramazan. Now we have to ask ourselves- how much Taqwa did we attain? Or did we just come out of the month hungry and tired?

Rajab, Shaban, and Ramazan they come to transform a person. To wake him up and to remind him, that you are a Servant of Allah (SWT) and Allah (SWT) is greatest. It is to remind us to return to our real life as a servant not as a slave to our ego. Those months come to pull a man out of the ocean of dunya and ego that he is drowning in the whole year. So how sad will it be if, right after being rescued and placed on the shore, a man jumps back into that selfish ocean to drown again until the next year.

That is why it is recommended for us to fast 6 days of Shawwal, so that we don’t jump back into our old lifestyle. Fasting in the six day so of Shawwal, in the days when the sheytan is just being released from the Hellfire, the days when our nafs is going crazy, the days when the whole world, the Muslim world is celebrating the Eid, and not looking to what is Ramazan again, the difficulty of fasting in those months, the reward is as if you had fasted the whole year. Meaning the protection will be on us till the whole year.  These months, the Holy months, they are here for no other reason than to make us to attain to Taqwa.

Hujjatul Islam Imam Abu Hamid al-Ghazali (KS) is defining Taqwa for us, saying: Taqwa in the Quran has three meanings.  First is fear and a sense of awe.  The second includes obedience and worship.  Third is freeing the heart from sins, which is the reality and essence of taqwa.  In summary, taqwa is to guard oneself against the anger of Allah and His punishment by fulfilling His commandments and abstaining from what He has prohibited.  The reality of taqwa is that your Lord never sees you where He has forbidden you to be, nor does He miss you where He has commanded you to be.

So in the three holy months that passed, we should have gained an awareness of this reality, an awareness of the reality of the closeness of Allah to us, the closeness of Allah witnessing what we are in and out. And if we kept Ramazan properly, we have attained it. We avoided eating and drinking because we were aware that this is Allah’s command, and we want to please Allah. We fasted from our senses,  from our five senses, from things that are forbidden, we fasted from our wrong intentions, we fasted from the wrong looks, from the wrong actions, because we want to please Allah (SWT). We prayed Tarawih at night, not only because we know that the Masjid is where Allah wants to see us, but we are training our bodies to be in the constant movements of what the Angels are doing since the day of their creations up till post eternity, to be in a state of Qiyam, to be in a state of ruku’, to be in a state of sejdah only for the sake of Allah (SWT).  So while we are testing our bodies in the daytime, to be without food and drink, and to gain nourishment through the spirit, just as the angels are doing, in the night time we are training our bodies to be in the movement of what the angels are doing from pre-eternity to post eternity.

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We stayed up for Tahajjud because we wanted to answer the call of Allah (SWT) from when He descends to the lowest skies every night. Our hearts and our souls are desiring to become free from the burden of sin and to be in the Pleasure of Allah (SWT). So how can it be that after almost one hundred days of running to reach that station, from Rajab, Sha’ban and Ramazan, we abandon it to jump back into the dunya. May Allah protect us from that foolishness. Because Islam comes to change people. Islam comes to transform people. And that transformation Allah (SWT) is not giving us that chance once in our lifetime. He is giving us that chance every year. He is giving us that chance, in reality, every week and every day. But mankind is blind. And that transformation is not a phase that you can just abandon after some time. That transformation it has to continue. Holy Prophet (AS) is saying in his Hadith Sherif,’ He whose two days are equal, that one is a loser. (Daylami).’ And our Sheykh is opening the Hadith more, saying: The Holy Prophet (AS) is saying, ‘The believer’s today must be better than yesterday. Tomorrow has to be better than today.’

Look at yourself. If your today is better than yesterday and if you have hope that tomorrow is going to be better than today, you are a believer that the Holy Prophet (AS) has given description of. Or otherwise, you are in trouble. Shake yourself up and come back to the Sirat-ul Mustaqim. You are reciting the Surat-ul Fatiha asking to be in Sirat-ul Mustaqim. Stay on Sirat-ul Mustaqim. Don’t run copying the Christians and the Jews. Live Islam. There is no moderation in Islam. Anyone who is thinking that they are going to run to moderate Islam, they lost everything.

Think for a moment if every day we became better. If every day, we were improving. If this Ummat, collectively, ran each day to obey and please Allah (SWT) more. Would we be in the miserable and humiliating condition we are in today? Definitely not. What if, instead of running to copy unbelievers and to follow them into the lizard’s hole, we ran to follow the example of those who came before us. Do we have any doubt that, if we were getting better, Allah (SWT) would improve our condition? Allah (SWT) is saying in Surah Rahman, BismillahirRahmanirRahim. Is there any Reward for Good – other than Good? (55:60). Sadaqallahul Adzim.

And if we want to see the reality of this transformation, we can look at the Sahaba-e-Kiram and the fourteen hundred years of tradition when the ummat was one, when our Allah was one, when our Prophet was one, and when the Khalifah was one. Not in this situation where two billion Muslims were split into two billion denominations and sects, each claiming to be representing Islam according to its own understanding. The best humans on the face of the earth after the Prophets, they are the Sahaba e-Kiram. They were transformed by Islam. Because they submitted themselves entirely and utterly to the Holy Prophet (AS).

Look at their state before Islam. One of the Sahaba-e-Kiram, he was telling the Holy Prophet (AS) about what he did in the name of Jahiliyya. He said, ‘O Messenger of Allah, I had a daughter. One day I told her mother to dress her as I was taking her to her uncle – the poor mother knew what this meant, but she could do nothing but obey and weep. My wife dressed the infant, who was rejoicing at the news of going to the uncle. I took her near a well, and told her to look down into the well.While she was looking into the well, I kicked her into it. While she was rolling down, she was shouting ‘Baba, Baba!’

As the man was telling this, the Holy Prophet (AS), he himself (AS) he sobbed and cried as if he had lost one of his nearest relatives. That was Jahiliyya. We should not be proud in the 21st century to say, oh, we became better and we became so civilized. That sin of killing children is continuing in this Jahiliyya more than ever, but with science, they do it earlier; we do it in the womb. Not just in non-Muslim countries. In Muslim countries, when they learn that they are going to have a daughter, they abort her. It has become so common. They don’t even refer to it as a baby, they say, ‘we get rid of it.’ Even though Holy Prophet (AS) said, ‘Whoever looks after two girls until they attain the age of maturity, would come on the Day of Judgment with me and him being (as close to each other) as these (and he joined his fingers together). (Muslim).’ And Allah (SWT) will take justice for that cruelty that is happening in this time. He is saying, in one of the most haunting verses in the Quran, in Surah at-Tawkir: BismillahirRahmanirRahim. When the sun is wrapped up in darkness. And when the stars fall, scattering. And when the mountains are removed. And when the full-term pregnant she-camels are neglected. And when the wild beasts are gathered. And when the oceans are filled with flame. And when the souls are paired. And when the girl, who was buried alive is asked for what sin she was killed. And when the pages are made public. And when the sky is stripped away. And when hellfire is set ablaze. And when the Garden is brought near. Then will each soul know what it has brought with it. (81:1-14). Sadaqallahul Adzim. May Allah (SWT) save us from the punishments of that day.

The Sahaba-e-Kiram, they escaped from that society and changed themselves to be the most noble people to ever tread upon the earth. Look at the Sahabi Ikrimah. What was his full name? Ikrimah ibn Abi Jahal. He was the son of Abu Jahl, the most hatred enemy of the Holy Prophet (AS). Ikrimah was against the Holy Propeht (AS) in all of the battles. He fought against him in Badr. He was the commander of the left flank of the Quraysh in Uhud. He fought against Holy Prophet (AS) even in Khandaq. When Holy Prophet (AS) came to conquer Makkah, Ikrimah ran away to Yemen. When Holy Prophet (AS) heard this, he told the people that if Ikrimah came back to Makkah, he would be granted amnesty. Finally, Ikrimah came back to Makkah. While he was approaching, Holy Prophet (AS) said to his companions, ‘Ikrimah ibn abi Jahl shall come to you as a believer and a refugee. Do not insult his father. Insulting the dead causes grief to the living and it does not reach the dead.’

When Ikrimah came to the presence of Holy Prophet (AS) he said, ‘I have been informed you have granted me amnesty, freedom from any punishment for what I have done.’

Holy Prophet (AS) said, ‘yes, you are safe.’

Ikrimah then asked, ‘To what do you invite?’

Holy Prophet (AS) said, ‘I invite you to testify that there is no ilah except Allah, and that I am the servant of Allah and His Messenger, to establish Prayer and pay the Zakat and carry out all the other obligations of Islam.’

And Ikrimah, after all those years he said, ‘Wallahi, You have only called to what is true and you have only commanded that which is good. You lived among us before the start of your mission and then you were the most trustworthy of us in speech and the most righteous of us.’ And he gave Shahadah.

Holy Prophet (AS) then told Ikrimah to announce to the people, saying, ‘I call on Allah and those present here to witness that I am a Muslim who is a Mujahid and a Muhajir.’

The Holy Prophet (AS) made dua for him saying, ‘O Lord, forgive him for all the hostility he directed against me and for all the expeditions he mounted wishing to put out Your light. Forgive him for whatever he has said or done in my presence or absence to dishonour me.’

Ikrimah was so taken aback by Holy Prophet (AS)’s mercy that he said, ‘Ya Rasulullah of Allah, I promise that whatever I have spent obstructing the way of Allah, I shall spend twice as much in His path and whatever battles I have fought against Allah’s way I shall fight twice as much in His way.’ And he kept his promise. He was on the front line of every battle that came after that. In the Battle of Yarmouk, the Muslims were fighting against the Byzantines. It was 70,000 Romans against 3,000 Muslims. And in that battle, Ikrimah was putting himself in great danger, until Khalid bin Walid (RA) came to him and said, ‘Don’t do this ya Ikrimah. Your death will be a severe blow to Muslims.’

Ikrimah (RA) replied saying, ‘Let us carry on, Khalid. You had the privilege of being with the Messenger of God before this. As for myself and my father, we were among his most bitter enemies. Leave me now to atone for what I have done in the past. I fought the Prophet on many occasions. Shall I now run from the Byzantines? This shall never be.’ And he went forward with the bravest people, until they gave their lives back to Allah (SWT). And he left this world with the title of Shahid.

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That is Ikrimah ibn Abi Jahl (RA). He was running after that Hadith that our Sheykh is telling us all the time, saying, If you do something wrong, run to do something right. When Islam came into his heart, he changed completely. He did not say, ‘well, let me go back to kufr a little bit. Let me go back to my old ways just for a second,’ no. He made a promise to Allah and His Prophet. He had honor, he had nobility, and he spent every moment running to fulfill that promise.

The Sahaba-e-Kiram, they are our role models. We should make the intention to change ourselves for Allah and His Prophet. We should take that change that took root in our hearts in Rajab, Shaban, and Ramazan, and let it to grow and give fruits. Our Sheykh, Sahib el-Sayf Sheykh Abdul Kerim el-Kibrisi el-Rabbani, he is one who has kept his Promise to Allah. From his birth until his passing, he was running in the Way of Allah. And that is why today we are commemorating his Urs. Because the Angels say to those ones in their Makams, “Sleep with restfulness and comfort just like an Uroos (bride).” (Tirmizi). And the words of the Prophet (AS) they speak the truth.

Our intention is to live in his footsteps. We are intending to live according to his words, when he says I speak for Allah. I don’t fear from anyone. I fear only from Allah. And I fear from Allah out of love for Allah. We are living our days for Allah. O Believers! Let us intend to live like that. Insya’Allah ar-Rahman. Amin.

stock-vector-vector-vintage-borders-54193183 (2)Jumma Khutba by Sheykh Lokman Efendi Hz
Khalifah of SahibulSaif Shaykh Abdulkerim el Kibrisi (qs),
OSMANLI DERGAHI- New York
6 Shawwal 1438
June 30, 2017 
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