America's Islamic Heritage Museum
Imam: Elijah Muhammad was on skid-row, a jobless alcoholic with a 3rd Grade education, and living on the street. But when he died he produced the illustrious Malcolm X, and the great orator Louis Farrakhan, and he produced the most knowledgeable of Islam, Muhammad `Ali. And then his son came and brought the Nation of Islam to true Islam, and that is a man with a 3rd Grade education! That is all by the Will of Allah.
Dr. Sulayman Nyang: Ash-hadu an laa ilaaha illa-Llah, wa ash-hadu anna Muhammadan `abduhu wa habeebuhu wa rasooluh. Thank you very much. To all who are here, Allah is the greatest movie maker and has a reason for each of you to be here. I just came back from my class on Islamic Philosophy and Culture in Africa in which I have many different kinds of students: Caucasian, Taiwanese, but mostly African.
This gentleman is telling you about a time when being a Muslim in America could be compared to a needle in a haystack. We interviewed his son, Warith Deen Muhammad, and he said that Fard Muhammad was from the region of Punjab in Pakistan. I have written elsewhere about the legacy of Imam Warith Deen Muhammad (r).
For Shaykh Hisham to be here is an historic moment because he is promoting the tradition of Prophet Muhammad (s), and as Muslims in America today, Allah (swt) is using all of us to promote Islam. I will speak only for a few more minutes just to underscore a few points, as you are all educated individuals. It is your responsibility to understand why Shaykh Hisham is here. It is very important, because Allah is the greatest movie maker and He is recording this gathering here today. As Elijah Muhammad is gone and so is his son, Warith Deen Muhammad (r), who did a great job. I am speaking to the young muslims that are here today, that this is your heritage and your history. I am trying to tell you that for the rest of the Muslims who don't understand the tradition of tasawwuf, we must know the legacy of Prophet Muhammad (s).
Allah (swt) in His Wisdom used Elijah Muhammad to bring Islam here. And now Muslims are a very big part of America today; we are here to stay and are not going anywhere. Allah is using everyone in this room, whether we are aware of it or not, and by coming here today you can witness the legacy of the late Elijah Muhammad and how his congregation has evolved. Now if you are a Muslim in America today, Allah is testing you; the only rival to you here (in population diversity) is Saudi Arabia during the Hajj or `Umrah. You are only here now as Muslims; you may be from Albania, Algeria, China, Palestine, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Pakistan, all the way to Zimbabwe, and that is one reason why Shaykh Hisham is here. I just wanted to warm you up, so that for those of you who do not have a tradition of tasawwuf, we have a very well-known Shaykh here today.
I came to know Shaykh Hisham when I went to give a lecture in Stanford. Some South Asian students came to me and said, “Dr. Nyang, you have to come and meet him.” Alhamdulillah, we are good friends. And so when I heard he is coming here today, I said to myself that I have to go see him. You will see that many of his followers attended Howard University.
Mawlana Shaykh Muhammad Hisham Kabbani:
As-salaamu `alaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakaatuh.
I don’t know what to say, except that it is an honor for me to be here among all of you and to see all of these beautiful faces, like a garden full of different colors and flowers. If you look at one color you might become bored, but if you see different beautiful faces with different colors you see Allah's Greatness. And we are this center today, which I think needs a lot of help. Before I speak I would like to urge everyone here not to leave without offering a donation. Donate and Allah (swt) will give you more. The Prophet (s) said:
ما نقص مال من صدقة
Maa naqasa maala min sadaqa.
Money never decreases from donation. (Sahih Muslim)
So make sure you give something in Allah’s Way. I will have two people at the door to make sure no one leaves without paying! The chairman and I will be at the door. (laughter)
They say “speak” and to speak is easy, but to find Realities in speaking and to understand the knowledge behind Islam, that is the question.
Dr. Sulayman Nyang, may Allah give him long life to keep his work as he is raising a lot of youth, alhamdulillah in a good way, reminded me when he posed a question, “Why is everyone coming to the West?” Especially from Africa, and I never saw Africans in the East. Most of them go to Europe and America; none are in Pakistan or China, Indonesia or Malaysia. Why? Because the Prophet (s) wants to show us a big miracle that he made 1500 years ago. When he was been abused by his tribes, where did he send his Sahaabah (r)? To Madinah.
He (s) didn't send them to China or to Pakistan, although Pakistanis are all Muslim and he didn't send them to the Middle East, but he sent them to Africa, to Ethiopia. And Africa is west of Mecca. So he wants to show them that to “migrate” is to go to the West, where there will be the final destination. so he sent them 1500 years ago, indicating to them that in the West is something prepared by Allah's Will that Africans will be first to promote Islam there, and it was the “African Americans.”
I was in Ghana and our hosts took me to visit the West Coast to see the biggest fortress they used for trading slaves. You cannot imagine nor believe how they treated the Africans, but you can see there were a lot of Muslims, people who accepted Islam, who came later. People came through slavery at that time, just as Muslims came to the West and promoted Islam slowly, slowly in a hidden way in America or in Europe. So the Prophet (s) is showing us a miracle from his miracles, and there are many that we can see and understand today.
The Prophet (s) divided religion into three categories. Of course, all of you know about when Jibreel (a) came and asked the Prophet (s) about Islam, and he mentioned the five pillars of Islam: to testify that there is no god but Allah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah, to establish the prayer, pay the zakaat, observe the fast of Ramadan, and perform the pilgrimage to the House if you are able to do so. [To see the hadith in its entirety, go to http://www.noblesanctuary.com/Jibril.html] Then Jibreel (a) asked him about Imaan and he mentioned the six pillars of Imaan: to believe in God, in His angels, His messengers, His books [Torah, Psalms, Bible, and Quran], the Day of Judgement, and fate, good or bad). Jibreel (a) didn't stop there, but asked about the station of Ihsaan. Islam is the belief in the five pillars, which build the structure of the religion; Ihsaan is like the ornamentation, the beautiful artifacts that decorate the building. For example, when you come here it would not be as beautiful if there were none of these nice posters to decorate the walls; Ihsaan provides the decoration.
The emphasis in many Muslim countries is on the structure of Islam, which is the five pillars, and no one goes on to explain the station of Ihsaan, good behavior. Allah (swt) sent Sayyidina Adam (a) to earth in the beginning and He gave him children; since then, there has been a struggle between good and evil. Isn’t this true, professor? This struggle continued between Caabil and Haabil, Cain and Abel.
Let us ask a question: Why did Allah (swt) want someone who has been cursed? When Allah ordered all angels to make sajda to Sayyidina Adam (a), they all obeyed except Iblees didn't make sajda and Allah cursed him. But then why did He leave Iblees in Paradise? Allah (swt) didn't send him to earth, but after being cursed Iblees went to Sayyidina Adam (a) to trick him into eating from the forbidden tree. Can a sinner or a cursed person be in Paradise? Why did Allah let Iblees stay there? That is a big question and there is wisdom in it.
The answer is, because Allah (swt) made this earth for Sayyidina Adam (a) and his offspring to live on. That evil began to appear through Iblees when Allah cursed him; he tricked Sayyidina Adam (a) into disobeying so that he would get kicked out of Paradise, and that is when Allah (swt) sent him to earth.
O Imam! Allah (swt) said in Holy Qur'an:
إِنَّ اللَّهَ وَمَلَائِكَتَهُ يُصَلُّونَ عَلَى النَّبِيِّ يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا صَلُّوا عَلَيْهِ وَسَلِّمُوا تَسْلِيمًا
Inna-Llaaha wa malaa'ikatahu yusalloona `ala 'n-nabiyy, yaa ayyuhal-ladheena aamanoo salloo `alayhi was sallimoo tasleema.
Verily, Allah and His angels send praise on the Prophet. O Believers! Pray upon him and greet him. (Surat al-'Ahzaab, 33:56)
Allah (swt) and His angels are praising the Prophet (s) and sending salawaat. How many angels? Allah didn't say how many angels, rather he said, “Allah and all His angels are making salawaat,” and it means those who were present at that time and those who are going to be created. One of Allah's Beautiful Names and Attributes is “al-Khaliq,” the Creator, and He is creating angels in every moment; if not, He would be limited and then He would not be “al-Khaliq.” From that Name, creation appears in every moment in our life, in heavenly life and in this universe!
Allah (swt) is saying, “Allah and His angels,” so the angels that Allah created and is creating now are doing salawaat. Holy Qur'an is saying: Inna-Llaaha wa malaa'ikatahu yusalloona. Yusalloon is a verb that means “they keep praying,” meaning in the past, present and future. Do you think that all of them are making the same salawaat? That would not reflect `Azhamat Allah, the Grandeur and Greatness of Allah! Allah (swt) is showing His Greatness to those angels by making each angel recite a salawaat that is different from all the others, so there are millions, billions of salawaats!
It is said in Kitab al-Ma`arif, from Abdul Wahhab ash-Shaara`ni (r), one of the big Imams of Egypt, that from every salawaat, Allah (swt) creates another angel and each of those angels is doing salawaat praising Sayyidina Muhammad (s). Yaa ayyuha ‘l-ladheena aamanoo salloo `alayhi was sallimoo tasleema, “O Believers! Pray upon him and greet him!”
Allah (swt) ordered all the angels to make sajda to Sayyidina Adam (a) and they did, but how many we don’t know. Can you find a single verse in Holy Qur'an in which Allah ordered them to raise their heads, or are they still in sajda? They are still in sajda, to show the honor that Allah (swt) granted Sayyidina Muhammad (s)! The evidence is the hadith of the Prophet (s), who said, ““I was a prophet when Adam was between water and clay,” and in another hadith the Prophet (s) said, “I was a prophet when Adam was between soul and body.”
There is not one ayah that says, "O My angels! Raise your heads." They are still in sajda and this is an honor for human beings. If human beings knew what Allah (swt) ordered for them, they would never look at this dunya, but only at akhirah.
Just now you said, “I bear witness,” Ash-hadu an laa ilaaha illa-Llah wa ash-hadu anna Muhammadan Rasoolullah. That is correct and it is the first pillar of Islam, but when you say, “I witness,” can you be a witness in court if you didn't see it? You cannot. So then how are we bearing witness? It means our witnessing is not perfect yet. “I bear witness,” means, “I have to see and I have to hear.” In a courtroom you cannot claim a person killed someone else if you didn't see it. So, in order to bear witness, shahada, we have to see what people cannot see and hear what people cannot hear. Can that be, O Imam? Yes it can, as it says in the hadith:
من عدى لي ولياً فقد آذنته بالحرب
man `adaa lee waliyyan faqad aadhantahu bi ’l-harb.
(Allah (swt) said) Whoever comes against my wali, I declare war on him. (Hadith Qudsee)
The evidence is the hadith of the Prophet (s):
ولا يزال عبدي يتقرب إلي بالنوافل حتى أحبه، فإذا أحببته كنت سمعه الذي يسمع به وبصره الذي يبصر به، ويده
التي يبطش بها ورجله التي يمشي بها،
Wa laa yazaala `abdee yataqarabu ilayya bi ’n-nawaafil hatta uhibbah. Fa idhaa ahbaabtahu kuntu sama`uhulladhee yasma`u bihi wa basarahulladhee yubsiru bihi, wa yadahulladhee yabtishu bihaa wa rijlahullatee yamshee bihaa.
My servant does not cease to approach Me through voluntary worship until I will love him. When I love him, I will become the ears with which he hears, the eyes with which he sees, the hand with which he acts, and the legs with which he walks (and other versions include, “and the tongue with which he speaks.”). (Hadith Qudsee, Bukhari)
Allah (swt) said, “As long as My servant approaches Me through voluntary worship,” He didn't say “obligation.” This circle of dhikrullah is voluntary worship and not obligatory. To pray Zhuhr, `Asr, Maghrib, `Isha, and Fajr is an obligation. The hadith says, “My servant does not cease to approach Me through voluntary worship until I will love him. Then you will hear what no ear has heard, see what no eye has seen and know what never came to the heart of any human beings.” This will happen to that servant when Allah (swt) loves him, “He will be the eyes with which he can see, the ears with which he hears, the hands with which he can change things and the feet with which he can walk on Sirat al-Mustaqeem. If he asks Me anything I will answer him.”
O Muslims! It means you have to believe what the Prophet (s) mentioned in this hadith:
رب اشعث اغبر لو اقسم على الله لأبره
Rubba ash`ath aghbara law aqsama `ala Allaahi la-abbarah.
There may be a disheveled, dusty person who, if he swears an oath by Allah, Allah will fulfill it.
There might be a person with curly, greasy hair and dusty clothes who appears to be nobody, a disgusting person, but if he asked something from Allah, Allah would immediately give it to him. So you have to look inward, not outward. Today in our society, people always judge by the outward appearance and they don’t look inward. Allah (swt) says to look inward (at yourself), not at others, which is not your business.
Sayyidina `Ali (r) said good behavior has four elements:
1) The first element is not for professors or imaams! It is to keep silent, then talk. As soon as you talk people can understand there is something wrong in what you are saying, so don’t talk but rather keep quiet. Sayyidina `Ali (r) was teaching Sahaabah.
The Prophet (s) said:
أنا مدينة العلم و علي بابه
Anaa madinatu 'l-`ilmi wa `Aliyyun baabuha.
I am the City of Knowledge and `Ali is it's door. (al-Haakim, Tirmidhi)
Can anyone explain what that door is? He said, “Don’t talk.” Put a zipper on your mouth!
(2) The second element of good character is to listen. First, don’t talk and second, listen to what someone says; then you can have some idea of what he is telling you. The professor in class has an idea he wants to convey to the students, so when he speaks and the students are listening, they know what he wants. At the conclusion of the class he will give a grade, so listen and don’t argue! Today people like to argue with the professor in class because they are taught to argue and are told it is ‘critical thinking.’ Why should we have critical thinking; instead, we should keep positive thinking!
One time in 1996 I organized a conference and brought an Egyptian reciter of Holy Qur'an. Many scholars attended and some youngsters were debating, asking questions and arguing with them. One of the scholars said, “Ikhras ya walad!” Can you translate? It is not good! He said, “Shut up, young one!” It means, Shut up and don’t speak to scholars like that; don’t give us your opinion because it is worthless. We are the teachers here!” Scholars from al-Azhar University and the Grand Mufti of Egypt, Sayyidina `Ali Goma, were there.
In Islam, you don’t argue. The Prophet (s) never asked one question, while Sayyidina Musa (a) asked too many questions. There are no questions in Islam! Sayyidina Musa (a) asked and got answers, since there was no intermediary between him and His Lord; he is Kaleemullah. Although he is higher than Musa, Prophet Muhammad (s) wanted an intermediary so he could demonstrate that we need one. Today they tell you to go directly to Allah (swt) with no intermediary, and the Prophet (s) could have gone to Qaaba Qawsayni aw Adna, “within two bows' length” of the Reality and Presence of Allah (swt) with no guide. But he took a guide from Mecca to Madinah when he made Hijrah in order to tell us, “You need a guide.”
Just now you said you are teaching and that you are an imaam. Alhamdulillah, you are a guide and a professor is a guide. You need a guide in everything. Let us ask this question concerning what Allah (swt) said in Holy Qur'an:
إِنَّا فَتَحْنَا لَكَ فَتْحًا مُّبِينًالِيَغْفِرَ لَكَ اللَّهُ مَا تَقَدَّمَ مِن ذَنبِكَ وَمَا تَأَخَّرَ وَيُتِمَّ نِعْمَتَهُ عَلَيْكَ
Inna fatahnaa laka fathan mubeena li-yaghfira laka Allahu maa taqaddama min dhanbika wa maa ta'akhkhar.
Verily (O Muhammad), We have laid open before you a manifest victory, that Allah may forgive you your faults of the past and those to follow. (Surat al-Fath, 48:1,2)
Allah (swt) is saying, “We have made a big opening for you, yaa Muhammad, and We have given you what we gave no one else!” That means there is no limit to that faith. Immediately after that, Allah (swt) said, “to forgive you your sins from before and your sins that will come after.” How can this be? The Prophet (s) is ma`soom, infallible, so how can he have sins? Allah said, li-yaghfira laka ‘l-lahu ma taqaddama min dhanbika wa maa ta-akhkhar. How can we understand that verse? This is an example and although we didn't continue speaking about Sayyidina `Ali’s (r) advice, we are trying to listen. Listen, then observe, then move. Allah (swt) said to the Prophet (s) that He made a great opening for him. Earlier professor, you said that Elijah Muhammad made a big opening for the people in this country. A person can give an opening for others, but Allah (swt) gave the Prophet (s) an opening with no end.
So how can we understand that verse, professor? It is a bit disturbing to the mind, because the Prophets don’t commit any sins. There are 124,000 Prophets and we know that from the Tafsir Surat al-A`raaf of Ibn `Abbas, in which he wrote that there are 124,000 Prophets, 124,000 Sahaabah and 124,000 `ubaad, high-level worshippers.
We give this example, that when the Prophet (s) was born he was saying, “Ummatee, Ummatee!” and throughout his entire life all he cared about was his nation. When he was dying the only thing he asked Jibreel (a) was, “What will happen to my ummah?” In the grave, Prophet (s) is not dead. Do you want the evidence or is there no need?
Man salla `alayya radd-allaha roohee ilayya hatta usallim `alayh.
Whoever prays on me, Allah will send my soul back to me to return his greeting. (Abu Dawud)
What does that mean? Imam Suyuti said that around the clock people are making salawaat on the Prophet (s), so Allah does not need to return his soul each time as it is always there, because people are sending salawaat all the time. That is the tafseer of Imam Suyuti.
And the Prophet (s) said:
Tu`radu `alayya `amalakum fa in raa’itu khayran hamadta ’Llah wa in raa’itu sharran astaghfarta lahum.
I observe the actions of the ummah in my grave. If I see good I praise Allah, and if I see other than that I ask forgiveness for them.
So that ayah is an answer to Prophet’s request to save his ummah! It means, “I have opened a big opening to you, yaa Muhammad! Whatever sins people commit, I am forgiving them for your sake, and also I will forgive whatever sins they will commit after that.” Allahu Akbar! That is our Prophet (s), about whom you cannot explain what Allah (swt) dressed him from His Greatness, from His Beautiful Attribute of “`Azheem.” Grandeur and Might!
Therefore, if we say a Muslim who says “laa ilaaha illa-Llah Muhammad Rasoolullah” will go to punishment because of Iblees, we are lowering our value or esteem of Allah’s Might! Allah will not let Iblees steal anyone from the ummah away from the Prophet (s)! So we have to listen and that is why scholars of al-Azhar say students must listen in class and take notes, and there is no argument about that. They tell you this is it, you learn it and that is it. But unfortunately, in modern universities today they teach students to always analyze and critique their professors. Years ago when I studied at university, we debated merits of arguments and criticized what we thought was right or wrong, but that was only to see isues from various perspectives and to impart more wisdom of that topic and increase our intelligence; it was not arrogant criticism of our teachers.
Sayyidina `Ali (r) said, “First listen, then observe, then make your decision,” as then your decision will be correct. In a place where everyone is talking, there no benefit: one must talk and the rest must listen. It does not mean the one talking is the most knowledgeable. In Lebanon we have a saying, “From where you learned adab? He said, ‘I learned from the one who has no discipline by observing and listening.’”
الا وان في الجسد مضغة اذا صلحت صلح الجسد كله، واذا فسدت فسد الجسد كله، الا وهي القلب.
alaa inna fi’l-jasadi mudghata idha saluhat salah al-jasad kullihi wa idhaa fusidat fasad al-jasad kullahu. alaa wa hiya al-qalb.
That is why the Prophet (s) said:
In the body there is a small piece of flesh; if that piece of flesh is rectified then the whole body will be rectified and if it becomes corrupt then the whole body will become corrupt, and truly that is the heart. (Bukhari and Muslim)
The Prophet (s) asked the Sahaabah when they sat in his presence, Man huwa al-muflis? “Who is the bankrupted one, the poor?” They said, “The one with no wealth.” The Prophet (s) said, “No, the poor one has no `amal, good deeds.” They asked, “Even if he prays and fasts?” and he said, “Even if he prays and fasts, because he is spreading false rumors.” The bankrupt person invents a story without investigating it and relates it to people, who are not aware of this.
In a hadith of the Prophet (s), he was asked, “What is the description of the munafiq?” and he replied:
آية المنافق ثلاث : إذا حدث كذب ، و إذا وعد أخلف و إذا ائتمن خان
Aayatul munaafiqu thalaatha: idhaa hadatha kadhab, wa idhaa wa`ada akhlaf, wa idhaa ‘tumina khaan.
Prophet said: The signs of a hypocrite are three: when he speaks he lies, and when he makes a promise he breaks it, and when he is charged with a trust, he deceives. (al-Bukhari)
He cheats you because you are innocent and you believe him; thus he makes fitna and confusion. Today our Muslim community around the world is not keeping its promises. I was surprised when I came to this country in 1990 and I saw something that stunned me. In this culture, if an American or Westerner makes a promise to you he always keeps his word, but if a Muslim promises you he breaks it. So the West learned the discipline of keeping a promise from the Muslims!
The Prophet (s) was with the Sahaabah and two of them needed to go to a village and then come back. The Prophet (s) said, “I will wait for you here,” and they went. The time for Maghrib came and they hadn’t returned, but the Prophet (s) didn't break his promise; he waited and they finally came.
The Prophet (s) was concerned about the diseases of heart and that is why he said:
Verily, in the body there is a small piece of flesh; if it is good the whole body is good, and if it is corrupted the whole body is corrupted, and verily that is the heart.
We had a highly professional conference in Indonesia, where we invited the Vice President of Indonesia and many rectors, etc. We invited a professor of a big university, who we will call “Professor So-and-So” so that we don’t mention names. He refused to accept our written invitation, although we had spoken to him earlier and he had accepted. We spoke to his secretary to ask why he was not coming and she said, “You didn't give him his rights.”
We said, “What rights? We said, ‘Dear Professor So-and-So.’”
She replied, “No, you must list all his degrees from high school, all the way to professor and then rector, which has another abbreviation; you have to include all of this on the card.”
This is arrogance from someone sick in his heart. Islam taught us humility, and the Prophet (s) was the most humble and showed the most humility to his Sahaabah and to his friends! He even showed humility when he spoke so he could build bridges with other communities, especially with the Christian and Jewish communities. When he prayed in Mecca, in the beginning he faced Ka`bah and then he began to face al-Quds in Jerusalem; that was the first interfaith dialogue. The Prophet (s) extended his hand, facing Masjid al-Aqsa for seventeen months to attract the hearts of the Jewish and Christian communities, as written in Tafsir ad-Dur al-Manthour of Imam Suyuti (r). Then Allah (swt) sent the ayah:
وَكَذَلِكَ جَعَلْنَاكُمْ أُمَّةً وَسَطًا لِّتَكُونُواْ شُهَدَاء عَلَى النَّاسِ وَيَكُونَ الرَّسُولُ عَلَيْكُمْ شَهِيدًا وَمَا جَعَلْنَا الْقِبْلَةَ الَّتِي كُنتَ عَلَيْهَا إِلاَّ لِنَعْلَمَ مَن يَتَّبِعُ الرَّسُولَ مِمَّن يَنقَلِبُ عَلَى عَقِبَيْهِ وَإِن كَانَتْ لَكَبِيرَةً إِلاَّ عَلَى الَّذِينَ هَدَى اللّهُ وَمَا كَانَ اللّهُ لِيُضِيعَ إِيمَانَكُمْ إِنَّ اللّهَ بِالنَّاسِ لَرَؤُوفٌ رَّحِيمٌ
Wa kadhalika ja`alnaakum ummatan wasata l-litakoonoo shuhadaa `ala ‘n-naasi wa yakoona ‘r-rasoolu `alaykum shaheedan wa maa ja`alnaa ‘l-qiblata ‘Llatee kunta `alayha illa li-na`lama man yattabi`u ‘r-rasoola mimman yanqalibu `alaa `aqibayhi wa in kaanat la-kabeeratan illaa `alaa ‘Lladheena hada ’Llahu wa maa kaana ‘Llahu li-yudee`a imaanakum inna ‘Llaha bi’n-naasi la-ra’oofu ‘r-raheem.
And thus have We willed you to be a community of the middle way, so that you might bear witness to the truth before all mankind, and that the Prophet might bear witness to it before you. And it is only to the end that We might make a clear distinction between those who follow the Prophet and those who turn about on their heels, that We have appointed the direction of prayer which you formerly observed, for this was indeed a hard test for all but those whom Allah has guided aright. But Allah will surely not lose sight of your faith, for behold, Allah is Most Compassionate and a Dispenser of Grace towards Mankind. (Surat al-Baqarah, 2:143)
Allah (swt) is saying, “Turn your face toward Mecca, and there is no problem, you did your best.” Allahu Akbar! The Prophet (s) showed humility, but we don’t. It is important to show humility to each other; for example, you show humility now because you are sitting on the floor and we are sitting on chairs. But the professor and I have problems in our knees so we cannot sit on the floor!
I will end with this. Let us say, “Bismillahi 'r-Rahmani 'r-Raheem.”
أَلَمْ نَشْرَحْ لَكَ صَدْرَكَ وَوَضَعْنَا عَنكَ وِزْرَكَ الَّذِي أَنقَضَ ظَهْرَكَ
Alam nashrah laka sadrak wa wada`na `anka wizrak. Alladhee anqada zhahrak.
Have We not expanded for you your breast? And We removed from you your burden that weighed so heavily on your back. (Surat ash-Sharh, 94:1-3)
Allah (swt) is saying, “Yaa Muhammad, look!” And this is posed as a question, Alam nashrah laka sadrak, “Didn't We expand your chest?” (not his physical chest); “We made your capacity and ability so big, fulfilling what you asked.” Wa wada`na `anka wizrak alladhee anqada zhahrak, “We took the load of sins from your back.” The Prophet (s) doesn't have sins, so it means the load of the sins of humanity, the ummah.
وَرَفَعْنَا لَكَ ذِكْرَكَ
Wa rafa`na laka dhikrak.
And We have elevated your remembrance! (Ash-Sharh, 94:4)
“We have raised your name on every tongue, not only on earth but also in the heavens, and we have made every angel mention your name!” Every day the angels are in celebration of the Prophet (s), and we said at the beginning that for each angel the salawaat on the Prophet (s) is different, always changing. That is a reflection of Allah’s (swt) Greatness!
I also mention this hadith of Prophet (s) narrated in Imam al-Bukhari's Adab al-Mufrad:
Allah (swt) will let me make sajda on Judgment Day. He will open to my heart heavenly du`as that were never opened to me before and I will be amazed.
What kind of du`a will that be? We know there is du`a made in prayer, and how many are there, hundreds? There is Du`a al-Maathoor, and there might be hundreds, thousands or millions of these prayers. But Prophet (s) said that Allah (swt) had never opened it before, not during his lifetime nor in his holy grave. Is it in Arabic? We know the Arabic language and what is there in the dictionary, but when the Prophet (s) said, “Allah (swt) will open a du`a that was never opened before,” it means it is not even in the dictionary.
There are letters that are like codes, such as alif, laam, meem, qaaf, haa, yaa, `ayn or saad. There are 300,000 letters in Holy Qur'an and every letter has a meaning; the evidence is that these letters are at the beginning of the surahs: alif, lam, meem, qaf, etc. Scholars put millions of meanings on them. So what kind of du`a will Allah (swt) send to the Prophet (s)? After the du`a Allah will say, “Raise your head and ask; you will be answered.”
The Prophet (s) will say, “I want my ummah,” and Allah will answer, “Take one-third and take them to Paradise.” Inshaa-Allah we may be among them! The second time Prophet (s) will go into sajda and Allah (swt) will open a du`a that He never opened for him before and He will say, “Raise your head and ask; you will be answered.” The Prophet (s) will then say, “I want my ummah,” and Allah will say, “Take the second third, and take them to Paradise.” Then Prophet (s) will go into sajda for the third time and Allah will say, “Raise your head and ask, you will be answered.” The Prophet (s) will answer, “I want my ummah,” and Allah (swt) will reply, “Take the last third except for one.” Allah wants to show that His Mercy encompasses His Wrath. That person will be the worst one, so imagine the worst person today, not the worst in killing people, like a terrorist, but in sins. Allah (swt) will say to him, “I give you to My Prophet; go to Paradise!”
O Imam! May Allah (swt) make us under the feet of the Four Imams! There are imams whose hearts are there with Allah, not with the people; they have their hearts with their Creator, with the Prophet (s), and with love of the Prophet (s) and love of the ummah.
We could continue, but Shaykh Muhammad is saying we should end here. (laughter)
Wa min Allahi 't-tawfeeq, bi hurmati 'l-habeeb, bi hurmati 'l-Fatihah.
The next time you invite me, inshaa-Allah we will have one hour. There is a request for light dhikr, then we will pray `Isha and then eat, inshaa-Allah.
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