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Humility Brings a Great Reward

Mawlana Shaykh Hisham Kabbani

2 March 2010 Cape Coast, Ghana

Cape Coast Mosque

2010 Africa Tour Series

As-salaamu `alaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakaatuh. It is not easy to travel and go from east to west, or from west to east. But Allah, with the help of sincere servants, makes things possible. First of all, I would like to thank you all for the welcome that you have shown our group, and we ask Allah to bless you and bless your country. Alhamdulillahi Rabbi 'l-`alameen. Wa 's-salaatu wa 's-salaam wa `ala ashrafi 'l-anbiyaa wa 'l-mursaleen Sayyidina wa Nabiyyina Muhammadan wa `ala `aalihi wa saahbihi ajma`een.

Yesterday I was in Accra and I visited the Shaykh Hussain Mosque in Ghana. It’s a simple mosque, very simple, but very dedicated people. Then he took me to the school, which I will really tell you as Imam Abdur Rahman Muhammad said, “This is the school that I learned in.” Maybe this school is a palace compared to the other one. It’s really like a warehouse divided into classes, and if it rains, all of the school will flood. But when I look and I see these schools and how they graduated people like you (gesturing towards audience), most of Ghana’s people graduated from such schools. I say to you from Indonesia, Indonesia is still far better than what we saw here because they say Indonesia is poorer, and I visited Indonesia, I visited their schools, this is worse. They are poorer here.

The second thing I like to say is, this has nothing to do with that, that everyone speaks about unity, unity, unity, and about unity of Muslims, and I don’t see unity. I saw it in Ivory Coast and I saw it here. I am surprised, in Indonesia you have that also. You have all different madhaahib here, and all of them speak with each other. You don’t have problems. In Indonesia you have the Muhammadiyya and Nahdlatul `Ulama. Muhammadiyya is following the Salafi school of thought, and Nahdlatul `Ulama is following the Ahlu ’s-Sunnah, the four madhaahib, and they do events together. You don’t see them crashing. I saw this here also, which I applaud you and congratulate you for that, because this is what we need, because unity is in Africa, I am seeing it. I didn’t see it in our countries of the Middle East, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Egypt--you don’t find that. It’s mixed with politics too much, and when religion mixes with politics…in the time of Prophet (s), yes, he had to establish the Islamic State, it had to be mixed with politics. But today, you know the leaders are tyrants. You mix religion with politics and they throw you in prison. No, it is better to keep our people safe and not to mix with and interfere in politics.

You know in America there is a lot of that, Islam mixing with politics and Muslims are mixed and then you have clashes, you have problems from everywhere. In Africa they think that in America we are living in a state of hate and the Americans do not let us to pray. I had this idea here, they told me here, personally. They said this is what is going on here in Ghana, Ivory Coast. But I would like to say like Imam Muhammad, for sure you know, you were in England also, that there is no such thing. Muslims are practicing freely and doing their prayers in mosques, and no one is interfering with them. If we do not interfere against the government, the government doesn’t interfere with us, and that is what Allah said in the Holy Qur'an.

Bismillahi 'r-Rahmaani 'r-Raheem. Ati`oollaha wa ati`oo 'r-Rasoola wa ooli 'l-amri minkum.

Obey Allah, obey the Prophet, and obey those in authority among you. (4:59)

Prophet (s) said, if there is a sultanu 'l-aja`ir, a tyrant leader, what you do? You try to advise him. If he doesn't listen, don’t demonstrate against him, don’t make fitnah, just raise your hands and ask Allah (swt) to give him wisdom. This is a hadith of Prophet (s). So our duty...when they told me to speak to them, these people, imaams, are humble, you don’t need to say anything. Look how he’s sitting so humbly, this is the real Islam, I am seeing it here. In other countries they like to glue the chair under themselves in order that wherever they go they take the chair with them1 (laughter) They fight who is going to be leader, and who is going to be this and who is going to be that. Here I am seeing, not only here, in Accra the same thing. I went to Ivory Coast, the same thing. Imaam is imaam, no one cares for a chair. There might be some secular people, advisers around the imaam, or Islamic hayyatul `ulama, the imaam’s office. There might be some people who want to make political stands, but the majority of Muslims in this country are not violent. The majority of Muslims in this country are so peaceful, they are so humble, and I was going to speak about humbleness, I found humbleness is already experienced in the faces of these people. So, what to say? How to make wudu, or what are the conditions of wudu, or how to pray? They pray. So do we have to tell them about humbleness? They are humble already!

So I see myself, I don’t deserve to sit here, I see myself to be with the shoes outside. But I will say, Prophet (s) trained his Sahaaba (r) to be humble because man tawaada’a lillaahi faqr rafa’ahullah, "The one who exercises humility for the sake of Allah, Allah bestows honor upon him." So if we want Allah to raise us, we have to be like these humble people, not to be professors and doctors and to be this and say, "I am this, I am that," as if you own the whole world. And what did Allah say in Holy Qur'an?

وَفَوْقَ كُلِّ ذِي عِلْمٍ عَلِيمٌ

wa fawqa kulli dhil `ilmin `aleem.

Above every knower there is a knower. (12:76)

There are six-billion people in the world; if I consider myself, I am the 5,999,999, there is still someone above me. So what’s the benefit? How can I be arrogant as there is one above me. What do you think about Allah (swt), Who is above everyone!

We have to show humbleness because Allah put above everyone someone who knows better. These doctors, when they do their doctorate, I am surprised, around the whole world when someone finishes his studies, he has to do a doctorate. What kind of fields are they finding the professors to make doctorates and keep going, doctorates around the world. Is that not right? Knowledge never ends, science never ends, Islam never ends. Islam is a heavenly religion; it is connected to Heaven, it does not end. There is no end, and Qur'an is Allah’s Word. Qur'an is not makhlooq, created. These words are not created. If any Muslim says these holy words of Qur'an are created, he is out of Islam. He has to renew his Islam, to say shahadah another time, to repent. Qur'an is not created, it is revealed to Prophet (s), it is Allah’s Word. We say in Arabic, kalaamullah al-qadeem, "Allah’s Ancient Word," that we don’t know about, but we know this is Allah’s Word. We must be very happy to read Qur'an because we are reading Allah’s Word.

So Allah said in Holy Qur'an: wa fawqa kulli dhil `ilmin `aleem. It means we have to surrender and say, “Yaa Rabbee, we know nothing, there are people whom You have inspired to know more than us." So as much as the imaam humbles himself, as much light goes to the hearts of listeners. As much as the imaam makes his ego big, as much darkness comes to the people who are praying there. So that imaam, mashaa-Allah, look, he is very humble. He is the imaam of this masjid? Very humble, alhamdulillah. It means light will be coming to the hearts of people here. (... ) So he is humble also, and Shaykh Mustafa from Indonesia, there might be under him 100,000 students; he is humble. So I am seeing humble people here.

May Allah (swt) forgive us, and may Allah make us to benefit from you.

Bi hurmati 'l-habeeb, bi hurmati 'l-Faatihah. Thank you very much.