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Today: consumption kills eco-systems; fraud, greed, grand larceny and theft bring down world's finances; deceit, infidelity and instant gratification destroy families; murders and wars have left us without peace or stability. On top we have droughts, earthquakes, floods, storms, tsunamis … has the world gone mad! Submit now to Allah before it is too late - to the One and Only God, the Creator, Lord and Sustainer of the universe, Unique in His Person and Actions, without any blemish, weakness or relatives. Follow the Sunnah of Muhammad (the last Messenger and Prophet - upon whom be the peace and blessings of Allah), and join those who will be the really successful ones.

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Sunday, December 05, 2004

seeking help from Allah (swt)

Nearly three decades ago when I was just thirty and while in Canada, I had problems of health. I hated being alive, because to me it meant suffering. I wasn't a practicing Muslim, except in that I abstained from pork and zina. I took alcohol - a gin and tonic every night before going to bed. It helped control my asthma. I did not offer Salah or keep the Sawm. I didn't even know what days the Eid fell, unless my friends came to me and took me to the mosque for prayers. So I prayed when asked to do so by my friends, not otherwise, but I had this feeling for the Ummah.

I asked Allah then if He had created me to work for this world in the West. Wasn't there something I could do for the Ummah?

One year later I found myself in Islamabad, about which I knew nothing except that the capital had been shifted here from Karachi. And as soon as I landed here, my asthma and my travel sickness and all my allergies vanished. I travelled in a diesel bus for thirty odd kilometers, and was able to so without feeling nauseated.
I didn't need alcohol anymore to be able to breathe :)

Almost a decade prior to that dua in Canada I had committed myself to work for the Ummah if I were asked to do so. So when I was asked that at Islamabad, I saw these as signs of my prayers being answered. I accepted all terms, as I saw this was from Allah.

Then when I started working, I found that my colleagues had ulterior motives; that they told lies about me; that they twisted and misrepresented my words to the bosses; that the bosses were selfish; that the world around me was hypocrite. I fell in the trap of seeking my rewards in this world.

Gradually, my immunity from allergies went away; my asthma came back; but I managed to stay away from alcohol. I found myself being subjected to more and more ridicule and worldly repression. I had thought I will embark on a slow Islamisation of myself, but I didn't say prayers regularly; I could not fast, and I did not offer compensation to the poor for this.

Then one day my boss asked me to call him my Raaziq. I was astounded, but he hounded me, and had it confirmed from a practicing Muslim colleague that this was the right thing to say. An hour of this torture followed. After asking him to be calm and that he should go home and reflect on what he was saying, I eventually had to tell him openly that this was kufr, and I wanted nothing of it. He threatened to dismiss me, or to make my life hell.

I told him my Raaziq, and everyone's Raaziq, was Allah (swt).
When I reached home, I asked myself why me, of all people, had to face this trial in a Muslim country, which had been created in the name of Islam. My conclusion was that I was not practicing my deen. So I decided to Islamise myself fast.

My boss did try to make my life hell, but I held steadfast. He wrote in my annual appraisal that I am not fit for promotion. He reduced my pay. It hurt very much, but I was stuck. I did not have the money to buy tickets to go elsewhere, and I now had a family to support.

It was a long time ago. The bosses have changed. They do not ask me now to call them my Raaziq anymore. Those I taught have now reached the highest levels of management in my organisation. One boss after another, on retiring, has asked me to forgive him, as they have realised upon leaving that they have done me injustices, and ascribed my work to others so as to gain rewards for their proteges.

At the end of every year, there is a promotion meeting, many times in the past the organisation heirarchy has removed my name from the promotion list. Many times they have simply passed it over. :) Every year I wait for my due promotion. I make it known that it is my due, but it doesn't come.

I should be unhappy, and I am, but it is wrong, because when I analyse it from a non-partisan angle, whatever I have is a bonus.

You see, 38 years ago, in August 1966 to be exact, I graduated wth honours and stood first at my university. I had dreams of becoming a top class researcher, and so did my professors. Just three months later, in December of that year, I was told I had a maximum of six months before I went blind. I sought 2nd and third opinions from very proficient eye specialists, but the results were the same. In the world I knew, blind people have to beg for a living, and I did not want to beg. Plus I had severe asthma from my childhood, and felt life for me would be unbearable. Eventually, just before the six months were up, I tried to kill myself with such a heavy dose of barbiturates, that survival was impossible. Before swallowing the tablets, naturally, I was very sad at having to terminate my life. So, I think I may have cried a little, and remembered Allah. I had given up regular prayers a long time before then. I did not fast. Then I remembered that Surah Yaseen is read near the dying. Who would read it for me, I thought. So, I decided to read it for myself. I guess Allah (swt) heard me. While in the sleep induced by the barbiturates, I fell over, and when I didn't wake up, my room-mate called the ambulance, and I was taken to hospital, where they decided the poison had entered by blood, and they could only pass the antidote intravenously, and hope for the best. I lay in that state for 4 days and nights, before coming to.

See, Allah had given me so much even before my prayer in Canada. I should be grateful to Him. Instead I have sought this worldly recognition. How stupid I am? Allah (swt) wants to reserve my rewards for the Hereafter, and I keep running around to get them here.

What do I need this for? Allah had maintained my eyes in working condition for the last 38 years. Despite my handicaps, He gave me education, and jobs where I have make remarkable contributions. He has given me a wife who is a practicing muslimah, two healthy children who have University education from very reputable Universities. a house in a posh sector, two cars. Everything you can wish for.

And I do not suffer from diabetes, or heart trouble, or high blood pressure. My health problems are the same (the sight problem has become more acute, though) that they were when the proouncement on my eyesight was made.

This year I am going for Hajj, insha`Allah. Something I had decided I wouldn't go for, for reasons of health and fear of the rush.

I am truly blessed. If I seek more rewards n this world, this would be kufraane naimat.

raabana atena hasanatanwwa fil akhirati hasanatanwwa qina adhabanNar