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“The Search for Beauty in Islam”

Mawlana Shaykh Hisham Kabbani

6 June 2014 Singapore

Lecture at Singapore Management University

As-salaamu `alaykum wa rahmatullaahi wa barakaatuh. A`oodhu billahi min ash-Shaytani ‘r-rajeem. Bismillahi 'r-Rahmani 'r-Raheem. Alhamdulillahi rabbi ‘l-`alameen wa ‘s-salaatu wa salaam `alaa ashrafi ‘l-mursaleen Sayyidina Muhammadin wa `alaa aalihi wa sahbihih ajma`een. Alhamdulillahi nastaghfiruhu wa nastadhdi wa na`oodhu billahi min shuroori anfusina wa sayyiaati a`maalinaa man yahdillahu falam yudilla lahu wa maa yudlil falaa hadiya lahu.

I don't know where to begin, but I say thank you for inviting me, although I don't deserve to be with you, but Irshad insisted that I have to come because he has a picture with Mr. Obama, the President of America. I don't know how he got that picture, but perhaps he has these tricks, as usual. He said the subject is “Searching for Beauty in Islam.” I said, “Why you want to make yourself tired? Go to a cream store and buy some creams there and put on your face and you become beautiful! (Laughter.) Because you have to decide if you really need that way to go through, searching for beauty in Islam, or only you get tired after a while so you don’t get anything, but he insisted, he said, “No, no, no, I am going to go through that way and I am going to find what I need.”

That is the kind of student you have to be, when you decide on something you go straight forward without looking back. I didn't look back when I was studying, I went forward and I didn’t look back when I tried to travel overseas to get a degree, but I went. Then I came back, I didn’t look backward and I said, “No, no, I have to study Islam.” Alhamdulillah, I am here to speak a little bit on “Searching for Beauty in Islam,” we don't need to search! Islam is the beauty, Islam is the flower that Allah has given to Ummatu’n-Nabi (s). Allah (swt), out of love, gave us that flower, which is that beauty, which is that knowledge. As His Excellency, the Ambassador said, the first revelation to the Prophet (s) is “Iqraa! Read!” nothing else.

If you want to learn, read. And the Prophet (s) said, “What am I going to read?” Today we have laboratories, scientists of all kinds, and in the past we had Muslim scientists, but not as advanced in technology as us, but the Prophet (s) was advanced in a big technology that we never, even if the whole world would sit together to reproduce a technology like that, no one can reproduce. He (s) was an-Nabiyy al-Ummiyy, “The Illiterate Prophet,” but at the same time he was able to receive Heavenly messages that coming with Sayyidina Jibreel (a), and that is a Heavenly technology; Allah (swt) created Jibreel (a) for Ummat an-Nabi (s) and for all other prophets to be the one connecting people together in order to study. So Prophet (s) said, “Yaa Jibreel (a), what am I going to read?” Iqraa! Iqraa! Bismi rabbika 'l-ladhee khalaq. “Read in the Name that Allah has ‘created’ (khalaq) with, created Creation, read with that, Bismi rabbika 'l-ladhee khalaq, “Read the science of the secret of Creation, read something that has never been opened before.” Allah is giving the Prophet (s) scientific information in that verse, and all of you I think have read about that:

اقْرَأْ بِاسْمِ رَبِّكَ الَّذِي خَلَقَ خَلَقَ الْإِنسَانَ مِنْ عَلَقٍ

Read in the Name of your Lord, Who created. Created man, out of a (mere) clot of congealed blood.

(Surat al-`Alaq, 96:1-2)

First, the child in the womb of the mother is coming as clot that is hanging in the womb of the mother, it hangs similar to a leech or a worm. That `alaq, how it hangs up? It was hanging, the clot, that Allah created human beings is hanging there like that worm or leech. Allah is telling that to the Prophet (s), and the Prophet (s) was able to understand. It means Allah was telling him the knowledge ahead of time, that in the future we are going to find. So knowledge brings you up:

العلم يرفع الوضيع والجهل يضع الرفيع.

Knowledge will raise the one who is in a lower level.

Al-`ilm yarfa` al-wad`ee, as Sayyidina `Ali (r) said, that knowledge raises up the one who is on the bottom, brings him up. No knowledge? You don’t study, you don’t get a degree--you are nothing in the community, you will not be considered anything. So Allah wants us to find the beauty in Islam: that is knowledge. That is the beauty. Look at the beauty:

مَرَجَ ٱلۡبَحۡرَيۡنِ يَلۡتَقِيَانِ بَيۡنَہُمَا بَرۡزَخٌ۬ لَّا يَبۡغِيَانِ

He let forth the two seas so that they meet together; between them is a barrier which they do not transgress. (Surah Rahman, 55:19-20)

The beauty of “the two oceans to meet.” That the two oceans meet; how they knew? Some Islamic scholars discovered it, that when any two oceans in the sea meet, there will be between them a quarantine, not this ocean will surpass over this ocean or the other ocean comes on that first ocean, everyone has its limits. How they knew that? They found that through science. They found that the fish in one ocean cannot move to the other ocean until they are in quarantine for forty days between the two oceans, then they can move from one to another, and Allah (swt) said it to the Prophet (s) 1400 years ago! Maraj al-bahrayn yaltaqiyaan, “He made the two oceans to meet.”

And what other two oceans did He make to meet? Like one of the biggest scholars said, Al-`ilmu imaan.” Ibn `Ajeeba said, “Knowledge is of two kinds: `Ilm al-Awraaq, Knowledge of Papers, like when you prepare a lecture, and `Ilm al-Adhwaaq, Knowledge of Taste: you have to taste! So Islam is a taste, it is not something like reading the news, you have to taste it.

الرَّحْمَنُ عَلَّمَ الْقُرْآنَ خَلَقَ الْإِنسَانَ عَلَّمَهُ الْبَيَانَ

Ar-Rahmaan. `Allama 'l-qur'an. Khalaqa 'l-insaan. `Allamahu ‘l-bayaan.

(God) Most Gracious! It is He Who taught the Qur'an. He created Man. He taught him speech (and intelligence). (Surat ar-Rahmaan, 55:1-4)

He said, “The Merciful One, He showed us His Mercy, His Beauty.” His Mercy is a beauty. His Beauty...now your mother feels for you, your father feels for you to be good and that is mercy, that is the beauty of the family, that they are proud of their son or their daughter and whatever they do for their family. So the beauty of Islam is that Allah says, “I, The Merciful One, `Allama 'l-qur'an, Who taught the Holy Qur'an, Khalaqa 'l-insaan, and created Creation.” If you look at this verse, ‘creating Creation’ is after ‘teaching the Holy Qur'an.’ Teaching Holy Qur'an came first, ar-Rahmaan `allam al-Qur’an, and you notice that ‘`allama’ is from ‘`ilm,’ which means the beauty is in knowledge: “I, The Merciful, taught you the Holy Qur’an, then created Creation.” Allah (swt) taught whom? For sure, Allah taught the one He created first:

كنت نبي و ادم بين الماء و الطين

I was a prophet when Adam was between water and clay.

كنت نبيا وآدم بين الروح والجسد

I was a prophet while Adam was between soul and body.

On whom? Keep it in your mind, we don't know, Allah knows. So He created His Prophet (s) and He taught him Qur’an after, `Allama 'l-qur'an. Khalaqa 'l-insaan, “taught the Holy Qur'an” and then “created Creation.” It might be He taught Holy Qur'an to the angels, because He ordered them an order that no one can reject. Allah wanted to show them something that they never understood. Angels are infallible, but their knowledge differs from one level to another. He wanted to give them something that they never did before, because all their tasbeeh is for Allah (swt), all their recitation is glorifying Allah, thanking Allah, and making sajda is all for their Creator, for Allah (swt), and He wants to give them something. He (swt) said:

إِنَّ اللَّهَ وَمَلَائِكَتَهُ يُصَلُّونَ عَلَى النَّبِيِّ يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا صَلُّوا عَلَيْهِ وَسَلِّمُوا تَسْلِيمًا

Verily, Allah and His angels send praise on the Prophet. O Believers! Pray upon him and greet him with a worthy salutation. (Surat al-'Ahzaab, 33:56)

He is teaching, He is telling them, as it says “Allah and His angels are making salawaat on Prophet (s).” He is introducing the Prophet (s) to them and telling them, “You have to do salawaat on Prophet (s),” to raise the Prophet (s) higher and higher in receiving knowledge. Prophet (s) in Laylat al-Israa’ wa ‘l-Mi`raaj, why did Allah invite him? For `ilm, for knowledge; Allah gave him the knowledge in His Presence there, wherever he reached, we don’t know, but we know Allah gave him knowledge:

وَالنَّجْمِ إِذَا هَوَى مَا ضَلَّ صَاحِبُكُمْ وَمَا غَوَى وَمَا يَنطِقُ عَنِ الْهَوَى إِنْ هُوَ إِلَّا وَحْيٌ يُوحَى عَلَّمَهُ شَدِيدُ الْقُوَى

By the star when it goes down, your Companion is neither astray nor being misled, nor does he say (anything) of (his own) desire. It is no less than inspiration sent down to him. Something that a very Mighty One has imparted to him. (Surat an-Najm, 53:1-5)

Allah is giving an oath that His Prophet (s) has not deviated, whatever he is saying, whenever he opens his mouth it is a Revelation: Wa maa yantiqu `ani 'l-hawaa in huwa illa wahyun yoohaa. `Allamahu shadeedu al-Quwwah, Allah taught him, The All-Powerful, The Absolute Powerful taught him what he needs for his ummah. That is why teaching is important, as Prophet (s) said:

طلبوا العلم ولو في الصين

Utlub al-`ilm wa law fi ’s-seen.

Seek knowledge even unto China. (Narrated from Anas by al-Bayhaqi in Shu`ab al-Imaan)

“Seek knowledge even in China.” The beauty of Islam is to let you seek knowledge. For example, in the hadith of Bukhari where Prophet (s) said, “Seven dates with a cup of milk,” what he ate in the morning around brunch time, “will save you from poison and mental sickness.” Allahu Akbar! That is narrated by Bukhari. Prophet (s) is teaching us from 1400 years ago that you are going to see this in the future, in your studying. “I am giving you knowledge.” So scientists, Muslim scientists like you, Muslim students that look forward to building communities and developing countries through your studies, the Prophet (s) is teaching the ummah 1400 years ago. So some scientists said, “Let us check.” They took seven dates and a cup of milk and put it in an artifical stomach, and they put all the enzymes involved in digestion and observed what is going on. As it was grinding the dates and the milk, an infrared blue light was coming from the stomach up to the brain and that light they use today to heal many people from many diseases of mental illness. Prophet (s) said it 1400 years ago!

Then they found out if someone is poisoned, where does poison go? It goes between the muscles and skin; they found that mixture of dates and milk goes in the same place. It will take over the poison of that person. That is from 1400 years ago, how did it happen? By knowledge. So the beauty of Islam is to make someone knowledgeable, who is able to manage his work, his career in the future together with Holy Qur’an and the greatness of Islam.

Allah (swt) did not leave us without some guidance. What did the Prophet (s) say? The beauty, if you want to search for beauty in Islam, to be a beautiful person, or handsome or to be beautiful means you must have good characteristics; for people to love you, to see you shining a spotlight, is to have good manners, not to have bad manners and you say, “I want to be president.” No, you have to have good manners, correct? One came to the Prophet (s), one Sahaabi (r), and he did not know what to do as he heard in hadith that Prophet (s) said three times:

الدين نصيحة الدين نصيحة الدين نصيحة

Ad-deenu naseeha, ad-deenu naseeha, ad-deenu naseeha.

Religion is advice, religion is advice, religion is advice.

“Religion is advice,” so what is advice? Advise you to be good, advise you to be handsome, to be beautiful in the eyes of people, advise you to do well in school, in your home, in front of your friends, to be a role model, not to be a bad model, taking your friends to do all kinds of bad things, but to be a role model to show them the right way. So Prophet (s) said, “Religion is advice,” and if we are not going to advise each other we are not going to reach the perfection of Islam. So that man came to the Prophet (s) and said, “Yaa Rasoolullah, advise me, give me an advice. I want to learn, I want to know.”

What did the Prophet (s) say to him? What he said to him? One word and one pronoun: laa taghdab, “Don't get angry.” To carry the good characteristics of good manners, Moral Excellence, Maqaam al-Ihsaan, is to make sure you suppress your anger, because the anger is the trunk of all bad characteristics, it is the trunk of the tree of characteristics, of behaviors, of manners; all these branches come from anger. You get angry at someone as you are jealous or you get angry with someone, might be you envy him, or you get angry with someone because he made you to be upset. But what is Prophet (s) saying? He is teaching us to look nice in the mirror of this world:

يَا بَنِي آدَمَ خُذُواْ زِينَتَكُمْ عِندَ كُلِّ مَسْجِدٍَ

O Children of Adam! Wear your beautiful apparel at every time and place of prayer.

(Surat al-A'raf, 7:31)

“Take your best dress, your best decoration to the masjid.” Which is the nearest masjid to you? (...) The nearest masjid to you is your heart! That is ‘the masjid,’ that is the inn that you have to go in! It’s an inn, the inn of every person, every person has an inn in his body:

الا وان في الجسد مضغة اذا صلحت صلح الجسد كله، واذا فسدت فسد الجسد كله، الا وهي القلب‏.

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)

Prophet (s) was telling us 1400 years ago, “Yes, verily there is a piece of flesh in the body of the human being. If that piece of flesh is healthy the whole body is healthy, and if not, the whole body is unhealthy, and that is the heart.” So the heart is the inn. It is said, “Neither My Heavens nor My Earth contain Me”--meaning “My Light, My Manifestation”--“but the heart of the believer contains Me.” And it is also said:

قلب الموءمن بيت الرب

Al-qalb al-mu’min bayt ar-rabb.

The heart of the believer is the House of the Lord.

Your heart is the one that can direct you, so the heart can only accept to be beautiful. That is why people say, “I love that one,” then the other one says, “I love this one.” Love comes from where? It comes from your heart, as when you love someone, you will be like Romeo and Juliet playing music under the window and then you kill yourself and kill her! [Laughter.] Out of love, people are overwhelmed with love. Yes, love is good. Allah said in Holy Qur'an:

قُلْ إِن كُنتُمْ تُحِبُّونَ اللّهَ فَاتَّبِعُونِي يُحْبِبْكُمُ اللّهُ وَيَغْفِرْ لَكُمْ ذُنُوبَكُمْ وَاللّهُ غَفُورٌ رَّحِيمٌ

Say (O Muhammad), "If you (really) love Allah, then follow me! Allah will love you and forgive your sins, and Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful. (Surat Aali-`Imraan, 3:31)

“If you really love Allah, follow the Prophet (s); Allah loves you.” To follow the Prophet (s), what did the Prophet (s) say?

‏انما بعثت لاتمم مكارم الاخلاق

I have been sent to perfect the best of conduct (your behavior and character). (al-Bazzaar)

“I have been sent to perfect your manners, to complete your manners.” Innamaa bu`ithtu, “I have been sent.” Everyone now forgets that hadith, but it is one of most important ahadeeth of the Prophet (s) because it shows the goal of the Message. The goal of the Message is Shari`ah, but at the same time it is spirituality, Tazkiyyat an-Nafs, Purification of the Self. If you don't purify your self, although you might be an `alim you might use your `ilm for something wrong. You might be a big `alim and people listen to you, but you might use your knowledge for destruction, and there are many like that:

وأما الآثار فقد قال عمر رضي الله عنه‏:‏ إن أخوف ما أخاف على هذه الأمة المنافق العليم‏.‏

قالوا‏:‏ وكيف يكون منافقاً عليماً قال‏:‏ عليم اللسان جاهل القلب والعمل‏.‏

Akhwafa maa akhaafu `alaa ummatee munaafiqun `aleemu 'l-lisaan jahoolun bi ’l-qalb.

The thing I fear most for my nation is a hypocrite eloquent of tongue and ignorant in his heart.

“The thing I most fear for my ummah is someone, `alim, who is `aleemu bi’l-lisaan, who is very well-educated, he speaks very well, who is eloquent in his talking, but his heart is dead.” What is that going to benefit people? Nothing. So the aim of the Message is to give us a constitution, to give us a way to Allah (swt), a principle of how to move toward Allah (swt), but you cannot come with a dirty prayer rug. For example, it is dirty, it has some dirtiness in it that you know might be from birds or animals that passed on the rug, so you cannot pray on it, you must wash it. So how are you coming to Allah with a dirty heart? Shari`ah came to fix our problems in dunya in our relationships with each other and Tazkiyyat an-Nafs, Makaarim al-Akhlaaq, came to elevate all of us, our selves, for Prophet (s) to elevate all human beings into Maqaam al-Ihsaan. That is why he (s) said:

‏انما بعثت لاتمم مكارم الاخلاق

I have been sent to perfect the best of conduct (your behavior and character). (Bazzaar)

“I have been sent to perfect your manners, your characters.” So that is knowledge andwhen you become like that you will be shining.

Prophet (s) also said:

المؤمن مرآة أخيه

The believer is the mirror of his brother (or sister).

He didn’t say a ‘Muslim,’ so be careful! He said a ‘mu’min’ is the mirror of his brother, as he became very shiny, very clean, very polished like a mirror, so when you look at him you see yourself and see your `amal is good or bad. There were two artists, they drew very nice beautiful paintings. So the king of that city said, “I am going to make a competition to see who is the best between these two.” So he put a curtain between these two, one artist on one side and the other on the other side, and they cannot look, they cannot open the curtain by themselves, the king has to open the curtain when they finish.

One was drawing very nicely and the other was sitting on the chair playing, drinking water,joking, and in between he is polishing the wall, polishing and polishing and polishing. And the other one was drawing very nicely. Then the competition finished, and the king said, “Show it to me, it is time to show what you did.” And he looked at the first artist, who has a beautiful painting, and then he looked at the other one.

He said, “What is this?”

“This is my painting, look!” and it was identical to the first one, because it became like a mirror from polishing, polishing, polishing, that one reflects into the mirror of this one.

Both of them got a prize, both of them identical paintings and very nice paintings: that one is a mirror, that one is a painting. So make yourself a mirror as the Prophet (s) said, “The believer is the mirror of his brother (or sister).”

One time it happened in history that Prophet (s) was putting the best dress on himself, it was a Friday and he was going to Masjid an-Nabawi and looked in the mirror fixing his hair, and Sayyida `Ayesha (r) was standing there and she said to Prophet (s) as she can say, “Why are you dressing so well and combing your hair? Are you going to see someone else?” [Laughter.] Sayyida `Ayesha (r), Umm al-Mu’mineen. And he (s) said, “No, yaa `Ayesha, but you are seeing your bad character.” I cannot say it, but I have to say it as it is Shari`ah [a lesson to teach us]. “You are seeing yourself in the mirror and when you looked at me and saw me in this dress I became a mirror to you, so you are seeing yourself in me, like a mirror,” Prophet (s) said the hadith, Al-mu'min miraata akhee. We must be mirrors, especially the youth must be mirrors for the next generation; we must carry a mirror with us and look every day in the mirror and say, yaa Rabbee hassin khuluqee kamaa hasanta khalaqee! “O my Lord! Perfect my character as You perfected my body!”

الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ , اللَّهُمَّ كَمَا أَنْتَ حَسَّنْتَ خَلْقِي فَحَسِّنْ خُلُقِي

All praises are due to Allah. O Allah! As you have given me a good physical form, so also favor me with good morals and manners. (An-Nasai)

Look at everything positive! A new generation is coming and they are going to look at you and what you have achieved and they might see themselves in you, because you became a mirror to them and that’s what the country needs, it needs people who are mirrors to the others, to reflect on them good manners and to make them to study. And believe me, you will become a spotlight. This is what they want from us, to be a spotlight, the beauty of Islam, because Islam is a spotlight that shines everywhere with the knowledge that Prophet (s) has brought to us through the Message of Islam, and you don’t want to be except that.

Now let us go back to story of Minister Rasheed Zainul `Abideen, if you want to hear it, he said it, but to see the beauty of Islam. From time to time I go to Los Angeles to do da`wah; we have some mosques there or some interfaith program or we go to some chapels to be with other communities to speak with them and many convert to Islam. One time Zainul `Abideen visited me in San Francisco, then I said, “I have to go to Los Angeles.”

He said, “I am going to Los Angeles, too!”

I said, “Where are you going?”

He said, “To an Imran Khan event.”

I said, “I am also going to that Imran Khan event, so let us go together.”

We went to Los Angeles and you know Los Angeles is an open, very modern style of life, with Hollywood and Beverly Hills, so I went to the event, in the ballroom, as I had to raise money for Imran Khan's hospital, and we were raising money from people, $400,000 and we began to hear noise outside, a commotion, and security came, so we went out to see and we saw that man with curly hair, very blonde, Italian, very Western and wearing gold everywhere--ear rings, nose rings--and he has a group of actresses and actors with him, by the way he was the hairdresser of President Bush’s wife. Where we arrived? All this commotion and everyone there, and this man in-between all these actors and actresses, like 10-15 of them, and he said, “Shaykh Hisham?”

I said, “Yes.”

He said, “We are coming to see you.”

Ishaq was there.

I said, “You are coming to see me?”

“Yes, we are coming to see you,” ‘we,’ meaning him and all those with him.

I said, “Khayr inshaa-Allah, how can I help you?” because when you want to convert someone to Islam, it is not like that, it is through different ways, but this one came out of the blue like that, suddenly in front of this ballroom full of 5,000 people. I said, “Okay, no problem.”

He said, “Oh! I am looking for you, give me a hug!”

I looked at him, “A hug? For what? We are not in San Francisco, so what hug you want?” This is their thinking. I said, “What do you do?”

He said, “I am a hairdresser for Hollywood actors and actresses.”

Now I understood. I said, “Okay, so why you came to me?”

He said, “I am looking for you for one year. No one gave me your phone number, I contacted the publisher…”

I said, “Publisher?”

He said, “Yes, the publisher, and he never gave me your contact, so now I heard from the program that you are here in this hotel, so I am coming.”

I said, “For what?”

He said, “Look, I am very educated,” that’s why Shaykh Zainul Abideen mentioned `ilm and knowledge, because he is very educated. “I studied everything, sciences and religion, but I didn't find any comfort in my heart. I am not happy. I don't feel okay, I don’t feel I am myself; I am not that person any more, I am someone different. So I studied Hinduism, Zennism, Buddhism, Christianity, etc. and now I am studying Islam, but I’m afraid from Islam.”

So I said, “Oh my God! you studied all that? So why are you comong to see me?”

He said, “Look, there is a story behind that. I decided to go to the biggest bookstore in Los Angeles, Barnes & Noble, and I went to the religious shelf and I said, ‘O my Lord, help me!’ I gathered all the books, pushed them out, I was closing my eyes, and all of them fell on the ground and the manager came, everyone came and asked, ‘What are you doing here?’” and they know him, Giacomo, he is famous. With his eyes closed, “I am checking,” and he took a book and opened his eyes, it was Angels Unveiled, a book that I wrote from an Islamic perspective about the angels. He said, “I read this book and this is the religion that I want! Give me Shahaadah now!”

I didn’t do anything, didn’t waste time with him, we didn’t do anything! I gave him Shahaadah and he doesn’t leave one prayer since that time, it was in the 90s. Until today he keeps his five prayers, he is fasting Ramadan, in Ramadan he comes to me and stays with me for one month, and he is very well established in Islam. He left dressing hair for ladies and only does men’s hair and he is on Ahlu ’s-Sunnah wa ’l-Jama`ah. So this is a spotlight, he became a spotlight because he attracted many who came to Islam. You only need a moment of contemplation that fits you, that targets your heart. If the speaker targets your heart you are finished, you will surrender to Allah and His Prophet (s), but if the speaker goes left and right and doesn’t make the audience to concentrate then you can lose them and lose their hearts. So Islam taught us how to behave and how to uplift ourselves by eliminating the seventeen bad characteristics within us.

May Allah (swt) make your association very successful, “Search for Beauty, an Evening of Wisdom” at Singapore Management University Muslim Society. Inshaa-Allah, a good Muslim society in dunya and Akhirah.

Wa min Allahi 't-tawfeeq, bi hurmati 'l-habeeb, bi hurmati 'l-Fatihah.

Look at this gentleman, Abdul-Wahid, he is from Australia and he is a very famous doctor in Australia and he converted to Islam. I don't know what he is doing here, he must be bringing more people to Islam. And this one near him is from China and he came all the way here to come to your university, to see it, and there are many here like that, so you don’t know who people are. Islam is everywhere, Islam is in the blood of the human being and that is why Allah (swt) says:

لاَ إِكْرَاهَ فِي الدِّينِ

Let there be no compulsion in religion. (Surat al-Baqarah 2:256)

There is no compulsion in religion, so leave them as Allah will guide them.

إِنَّكَ لَا تَهْدِي مَنْ أَحْبَبْتَ وَلَكِنَّ اللَّهَ يَهْدِي مَن يَشَاء وَهُوَ أَعْلَمُ بِالْمُهْتَدِينَ

It is true (O Muhammad) you will not be able to guide every one whom you love, but Allah guides those whom He wills and He knows best those who receive guidance. (Surat al-Qasas, 28:56)

“Don’t guide whom you like, Allah guides whom He likes.” So may Allah forgive us all, may Allah give us the best of this night. We are in Sha`baan now and Prophet (s) used to fast a lot of days in Sha`baan, so prepare yourself in order that you will be fasting from bad manners, and me like you and you like me, there is no difference in the Eyes of Allah that this one is better than that one; all of them are like a jewel on a crown, every human being is a jewel that Allah created Creation with Love. He loved them and He created them. His Iraadah came to love them; He created them. So love is the most important aspect in religion, and that’s why Prophet (s) said, and I will say it to you:

يحشر المرء مع من أحب

Each person will be resurrected with the one he loves.

People will be resurrected with whom they love. So that’s why the Bedouin said to Prophet (s), “I love you!” and Prophet (s) said, “You will be with me in Akhirah!” So love each other, love your country, as:

حب الاوطان من الايمان

Love of your countries is from faith.

So love your country; it’s a good country, taking care of you. I wish my country would be like this country, by which I mean Lebanon. We hope in the future it will become better and that war will stop, bloodshed will stop and everyone will live in peace, inshaa-Allah.

As-salaamu `alaykum wa rahmatullaah.


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