(After Suhbah at Singapore Management University)
Q: Students must complete projects and assignments, so how can they fulfill their obligations as Muslims?
A: I mentioned that last hadith about the Bedouin who asked about the Day of Resurection, and Prophet (s) said, “What have you prepared for that long journey?” and the Bedouin answered, “I love you and I love Allah!” The Prophet (s) said, “You will be resurrected with the one you love.”
Don’t you think the Prophet’s (s) shafa`ah, intercession, is for you? “Ash-Shaf`ee” is the one who makes shafa`ah.
All nations with their prophets come to Sayyidina Muhammad (s) to make shafa`ah on their behalf, so what about his own ummah? Of course he will intercede for them, but still you must do your work and try not to miss your prayers. I think that is what you are asking.
Recently I addressed a conference in Turkey and I will quote something the president of al-Azhar University said, as he is hearing this broadcast. He said, Allah's mercy is so great as we are in a time that is so difficult, especially in western countries, where Muslim students attend university, and you know today the reputation of Muslims is not so great. However, Islam is perfect like the full moon and no one can say anything (bad about the religion). But you know Muslims’ actions are not perfect, so in Europe, America, South America and throughout western countries, Muslims are in their class and adhaan is called; what do you do? You don’t pray openly or ask the professor to stop his lecture because you are going out to pray, or he will say, “What kind of ?????” About this situation, the president of al-Azhar University mentioned the verse:
الَّذِينَ يَذْكُرُونَ اللّهَ قِيَامًا وَقُعُودًا وَعَلَىَ جُنُوبِهِمْ وَيَتَفَكَّرُونَ فِي خَلْقِ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأَرْضِ رَبَّنَا مَا خَلَقْتَ هَذا بَاطِلاً سُبْحَانَكَ فَقِنَا عَذَابَ النَّارِ
alladheena yadhkuroonullah qiyamaan wa q`oodan wa `alaa junoobihim wa yattafakkaroona fee khalqi 's-samawaati wa 'l-ard, rabbanaa maa khalaqta hadhaa baatilan subhaanaka fa qinaa `adhaaba 'n-naar.
Those who remember Allah (always, and in prayers) standing, sitting, and lying down on their sides, and think deeply about the Creation of the Heavens and the Earth, (saying), "Our Lord! You have not created (all) this without purpose, glory to You! Give us salvation from the torment of the Fire." (Aali `Imraan, 3:191)
In Islamic Law, if you cannot pray normally, standing, then you pray sitting, and if you cannot pray sitting, then just move your head (gesturing). So in the classroom when your professor is giving a lecture, the president of al-Azhar University--who is trying to give a way for students because he has 500,000 students in al-Azhar University, and he is right--said if you want to pray Zhuhr, say “Allahu Akbar (takbeer)” and recite (what you normally recite), and then again say, “Allahu Akbar,” and move your head only through the various positions of salaat. If you are more sincere, you can repeat that salaat when you leave the classroom. This is for Muslims in western countries, and also for Muslims in airports, during business matters, etc., as there is no need to make a big deal (of praying in public) when, in such situations, you are permitted to simply move your head.
The one who is suspicious of ... leave unbelievers to Allah (swt) as that is not your business. Judge correctly and with justice. You are not in charge of justice; there are judges who are responsible for that, so it is not permissible that everyone exact justice or everyone will fight each other. In a community, the suspicious heart must not be suspicious of others. For those who doubt the existence of Allah (swt) or the Prophet (s), that is where you have to fix yourself.
Q: Can you speak more about electromagnetic waves?
A: Electromagnetic waves always shrink, analog wavelength is long, but digital wavelength is very acute and can carry thousands and thousands of connections hidden between analog. There are many hidden places that contain spiritual information, and that is where Allah (swt) said about Sayyidina Khidr (a), “We taught him heavenly knowledge.” (al-Kahf, 18:65) So from digital channels thousands more can be opened. There are many levels of knowledge, and the level of imaan is to struggle between good and evil. From the time of the Prophet (s), his Family (r) and uncles tortured him in Mecca. So faith goes up and down, and Allah (swt) rewards if you struggle and if you don't struggle and everything comes easy, then there is no reward, but if you struggle there is a high reward.
Nothing is real. Thoughts will never end and as soon as you say, “Allahu Akbar” and enter the prayer a lot of thoughts will come to you, thoughts that you might not have even while talking with friends or watching a movie, yet when you enter the prayer you have bad thoughts! Try to exclude that from yourself. When that thought comes, in psychological terms the subconscious part of the mind tries to take it in, and when it becomes implanted there it will disturb you, but you must keep your eyes open and fixed on the position of salaat you are in, and say to yourself, “astaghfirullah.”
Q: How to control our actions?
A: As the Prophet (s) said, to control anger is to audit yourself by contemplating on or examining what you have done that day, and whatever bad characters you find, write them down, then you will begin to eliminate them.
Allah (swt) said:
Those who keep their anger down. (Aali `Imraan, 3:134)
فَمَنْ عَفَا وَأَصْلَحَ فَأَجْرُهُ عَلَى اللَّهِ
faman `afaa wa aslaha fa-ajruhu `alaa’Llah.
But if a person forgives and makes reconciliation, his reward is due from Allah. (ash-Shura, 42:40)
When Qabeel came to kill Habeel, Habeel said to his brother, “I will not fight you.” So struggle with it and eventually you will control anger. There is an explanation of one of Allah's Beautiful Names and Attributes, “al-Haleem.” Recite it 100-300 times daily to become gentle and forebearing; it will make that light of forbearance in you and prevent the anger from coming out.
Q: Is there a specific darood or a specific way we should recite?
A: There are thousands of ways to make durood on the Prophet (s). “Verily, Allah and His angels send praise on the Prophet. O Believers! Pray upon him and greet him.” (al-'Ahzaab, 33:56) Allah (swt) ordered the angels to pray on the Prophet (s) and whatever they recite is unique and never repeated by them or any other angel! The best is for us to recite salawaat on the Prophet (s) as often as possible.
Q: Please give advice for when I do salawaat and dhikr.
A: For all of us to have healthy heart and wealthy life, bi hurmati ‘l-Fatihah. I have been in tariqah for more than fifty years and I am still struggle against my ego! We all have to struggle and do as much as we can. Allah (swt) made it this way since he sent Sayyidina Adam (a) on earth. Why did Allah (swt) create Iblees? To make him whisper in Adam’s ears, “Eat from the Forbidden Tree.” Why did Allah (swt) let him do that? There is wisdom in it: in order to bring human beings to Earth. So there is a struggle. When you see something you don't like, don't think it is something bad; rather, it is a struggle and Allah (swt) will reward you. Remember the hadeeth in which Prophet (s) said, “I was the prophet who was most tortured by my own people.”
Q: Is praying in class allowed?
A: Allah (swt) said in Holy Qur’an:
فَأَيْنَمَا تُوَلُّواْ فَثَمَّ وَجْهُ اللّهِ
faaynamaa tuwalloo fathamma wajhu Allah.
Wherever you direct your face, Allah's Countenance is there. (al-Baqara, 2:115)
There are fatwas of scholars that whatever your direction, in such situations your prayer will reach the Divine Presence.