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We Will Follow the Example of Those Who Believe

Signs of the Last Days, Part 5

Shaykh Hisham Kabbani

12 March 2016 Feltham, London, UK

Centre for Spirituality & Cultural Advancement (CSCA) (2)

[Series source text: السنن الواردة في الفتن وغوائلها والساعة وأشراطها As-Sunan al-Waridah Fi ‘l-Fitani wa Ghawaali’ihaa wa ‘s-Saa`ati wa Ashraatihaa, by `Uthman bin Sa`eed al-Muqri ad-Daani; research and Hadith authentication by Dr. Ridaaullah bin Muhammad Idris Mubarakfuri; published by Daar al-`Aasima, Riyadh. Originally published 444 Hijri.]

Alhamdulillahi Rabbi 'l-`Alameen wa ’s-salaatu wa ’s-salaamu `alaa ashrafi 'l-mursaleena Sayyidina wa Nabiyyina Muhammadin wa 'alaa aalihi wa sahbihi ajma'een. Alhamdulillah alladhee hadaana li ‘l-Islam wa maa kunna an nahtadee law laa an hadaan 'Llah. We thank Allah for guiding us to Islam, otherwise we would have been lost. Allah (swt) said in Holy Qur'an:

كُنتُمْ خَيْرَ أُمَّةٍ أُخْرِجَتْ لِلنَّاسِ تَأْمُرُونَ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَتَنْهَوْنَ عَنِ الْمُنكَرِ وَتُؤْمِنُونَ بِاللّهِ

You are the best of nations sent forth to mankind, calling for good and forbidding evil and believing in Allah. (Surat Aali `Imraan, 3:110)

Allah said, “You are the best community sent to humanity,” not because you are doing something good, no; if Allah were to measure what we do, it is nothing, one wrongful gaze is enough to make the Scale decrease our good deeds! One ni`mat that Allah gave, like sometimes people see in the dream as if someone like a monster came over them and they cannot breathe, but in reality, that is the monster of the ego that comes and Allah gave him a nose with one nostril; if he had two, then that one will die. When that monster comes it is from within yourself to possess you and take you over completely, but it has only one nostril so you can still breathe. That is a big ni`mat that we aren’t thinking about. Go to hospitals, see the patients and what kind of ni`mat Allah is giving you!

So Allah is not going to consider our `amal because the Prophet (s) said to Sayyida `Ayesha (a):

من حوسب عذب

(Yaa `Ayesha!) Who will be judged will be punished for sure. (Bukhari)

“O `Ayesha! Ask Allah not to question you,” meaning, don’t value your `amal, don't see you are praying and fasting because if Allah wants to throw that in your face, what will you do?

وَقَدِمْنَا إِلَى مَا عَمِلُوا مِنْ عَمَلٍ فَجَعَلْنَاهُ هَبَاء مَّنثُورًا

And We shall turn to whatever deeds they did (in this life) and We shall make such deeds as floating dust scattered about. (Surat al-Furqan, 25:23)

You cannot say, “I am a shaykh, O Allah!” Who can say that? Prophet (s) is the only one to stand before Allah on Judgment Day and every prophet other than him (s) will be shaking, forget about the Ummah, all other groups will be shaking. All other prophets their nations come to them to intercede for them and they will say, “I cannot, I can only intercece for myself!” except for the Prophet (s) and only he can intercede for the Ummah and for all humanity and this is from Allah’s Mercy! So Allah (swt) said:


وَقُلِ اعْمَلُوا فَسَيَرَى اللَّـهُ عَمَلَكُمْ وَرَسُولُهُ وَالْمُؤْمِنُونَ

And say [to them, O Muhammad!], “Act [in righteousness] for Allah will see your actions and so will His Messenger and the Believers.” (Surat at-Tawbah, 9:105)

Work and Allah (swt) will see it and the Prophet (s) will see it and people will see it, but be careful, don't say, “I am safe.” Who can stand in the Divine Presence with the Prophet (s)? Only Prophet (s) can stand in the Divine Presence, but in spite of this Allah still said, kuntum khayr ummatin ukhrajit lin-naas, “You were the best community that Allah sent to humanity,” it is not because of our `amal. He specified Ummat an-Nabi (s), “You were the best of Nations,” but why? Because you were chosen, you did not become Muslim by your cleverness or intellect. Those who became Muslim through intellect, Allah rewarded them and waived all their sins! That is why when a non-Muslim says, “Ash-hadu an laa ilaaha illa-Llaah wa ash-hadu anna Muhammadan rasoolullah,” it waives all their sins. Even if your only understanding of Islam is coming through the Internet, when you enter Islam, Allah waives all your sins and makes you from among the Ummah, the Best Nation! Allah said it and is still saying, “You are the best Ummah sent to humanity, because I have chosen you!”

Every one of us is chosen one-by-one or else how can we achieve recognition? As Allah said in Holy Qur'an, “You are the best community sent to humanity,” it is not because of our `amal, but rather because of what Allah has granted us and what the Prophet (s) has mentioned about us! Our duty is to complete our obligations everyday and whatever is asked of us, we cannot say, “O, we missed the prayers (and think it is okay).” Sometimes people miss their prayers, may Allah forgive them and forgive us. We must do our obligations, and beside that Allah has sent Messengers because we were the best of Ummahs that Allah raised us to be with the Prophet (s). Allah is caring for us and He wants us to know that there are going to come some difficult times, which is why Prophet (s ) said to Sayyida `Ayesha (a),”Ask Allah not to question you,” because who will be checked, for sure Allah will bring something you did, “You don't remember this, but I am showing you,” what will you answer? For the Prophet (s) to say to `Ayesha (a) who is Umm al-Mu’mineen, “O `Ayesha, be careful!” then who can guarantee you from being questioned? No way!

So then we have to be careful as the Prophet (s) is caring for us and he said, from whom do you take your advice, a Believer or a non-Believer? Take advice from a Believer and someone you trust, because you know he is not going to ghish, cheat you, his advice will be for your benefit. That is why `ulama al-Ummah are required to advise the Ummah, but they are not perfect because they are human beings and they make mistakes, but the one who does not make mistakes is the Best One (s) and you take what he says for granted, you don't question him because he doesn’t make mistakes, he is the Best One, the Chosen One, the Perfect One who is in the Divine Presence and what he says is wahiyy! Sayyidina Muhammad (s)! He is the one from whom all prophets take their advice. He is going to witness on all of them and intercede for all of them and for their Ummahs, so do we have to listen to him or to others? Raa’fatan li ‘l-`ibad, “Mercy for humanity.”

He (s) said:

لتتبعن سنن من قبلكم الشبر بالشبر والذراع بالذراع والباع بالباع حتى لو أن أحدهم دخل جحر ضب لدخلتموه

You will follow the ways of those before you, handspan by handspan, armspan by armspan, footstep by footstep, even if they enter the hole of a lizard, you will enter. (Ahmad)

“There is coming a very difficult time after me, you have to be careful.” La-tattabi`oon sunan alladheena man qablikum ash-shibru bi’sh-shibru wa’l-dharaa` bi ’dh-dharaa` wa ’l-baa`u bi’l-a`au, “There will be coming a time when you are going to follow the footsteps of the ones who came before you, arm to arm and shibran bi shibr, handspan by handspan, hattaa law anna dakhala hujri dabbin la dakhaltumooh, until, if they will enter the hole of a lizard, you will follow them.” You blindly follow them and think they will guide you to Reality. It’s okay that they have their opinion, but stand up for yours, too. The Prophet (s) predicted what is going to happen today and said you are going to face this problem.

We are following whom? We say this is the ‘century of technology,’ and I am not saying technology is bad, but it has to be used for good things and now we are using it for bad things. Even with that, you are following them to take you to destruction until when, even if they go into a grave or hole, you will follow them! The Sahaabah (r) said, “Yaa Rasoolullah, the Jews and Christians?” and the Prophet (s) said, “Is there anyone else?” It means Allah gave you your religion, keep it clean, don’t mess it up. Allah gave the Jews their religion, they have Sayyidina Musa (a), he knows better. You don’t know as you were not in his time; he approached his Ummah and gave them advice. Likewise, Sayyidina `Isa (a) gave his Ummah his advice. We accept what Sayyidina Musa (a) and Sayyidina `Isa (a) came with. The Prophet (s) is as-Saadiq al-Masdooq, “The Most Trustworthy One.” He showed us and predicted what is going to happen in the future in the Signs of the Last Days. He said it is very important, “There is going to come a time when religion will be very tough for people to follow.”

The Prophet (s) said, as related by Ibn Mas`ud (r):

تَعَلَّمُوا الْعِلْمَ وَعَلِّمُوهُ النَّاسَ , وَتَعَلَّمُوا الْقُرْآنَ وَعَلِّمُوهُ النَّاسَ , وَتَعَلَّمُوا الْفَرَائِضَ وَعَلِّمُوهَا النَّاسَ , فَإِنِّي امْرُؤٌ مَقْبُوضٌ , وَإِنَّ الْعِلْمَ سَيُقْبَضُ , وَتَظْهَرُ الْفِتَنُ حَتَّى يَخْتَلِفَ الاثْنَانِ فِي الْفَرِيضَةِ لا يَجِدَانِ أَحَدًا يَفْصِلُ بَيْنَهُمَا

Learn knowledge and teach it to people, learn Qur’an and teach it to people, learn the obligations and teach it to people, for indeed I am a person who will be contracted and truly knowledge will be contracted, and chaos will appear to the point that two people will disagree about an obligation and not find anyone to resolve the issue between them. (Bayhaqi; al-Mustadrak of al-Hakim an-Nisapuri)

“Learn knowledge and teach it to people.” It means make them to pay attention when there is a time coming where there is confusion like big chunks of darkness, when everywhere you look in the sky you see darkness, you cannot even see stars and today even in daytime you cannot see light. The Prophet (s) said, ta`allam al`ilm, study knowledge, even in China, seek those who can guide you, as Allah (swt) said in Holy Qur'an:

وَلِكُلِّ قَوْمٍ هَادٍ

And for every nation there is a guide. (Surat ar-Raad, 13:7)

Wa li kulli qawmin haad, from every group of people there is a guide from within themselves. Allah gave to every group and community a guide; therefore, don't underestimate the guides as Allah has put sincerity in their hearts as we know from awliyaullah, from our shuyookh, that there are 124,000 wali on footsteps of 124,000 Sahaabah (r) who inherit from the knowledge of Prophet (s). That is why the Prophet (s) said:

أصحابي كالنجوم بأيهم اقتديتم اهتديتم

My Companions are like stars (on a dark night); whichever of them you follow, you will be guided.

(`Abd ibn Humayd, ad-Daraqutnee, ibn `Adiyy, ibn `Abd al-Barr, with unsound chains, but the meaning is sound.)

You may follow anyone and if you don’t find someone, the Prophet (s) said if Allah wants good for his servant, if he intends what is best and he is struggling, he needs a guide and, “Allah will create a guide from within his heart to guide him,” meaning He will assign an angel to inspire him to do what is good and to stop doing what is bad.”

إذا أراد الله بعبد خيرا جعل له واعظا من قلبه

If Allah wants goodness for a servant of His, He will make for him an advisor in his heart. (Imam Ahmad)

Allah will make him a wise one, and who is better than angels to advise him within his heart? What Prophet (s) mentioned is coming and now we are in it, although that was 1400 years ago. He said, “Look at the stars, as-haabee ka ‘n-nujoom, “my Companions are like the stars.” Their realities are there, every Sahaabi has a star or planet from their work, `amal; from their love of Prophet (s) each one is a star or planet by themselves and if you go in their hearts you find a lot of treasures. That is why Sayyidina Abu Bakr as-Siddiq (r) was called as-Siddiq, “the One Who Accepts.” He does not doubt and he was the strongest among as-haab an-Nabi (s) who always said, sadaqta, yaa Yasoolullah , “You have spoken the truth, O Rasoolullah!” He knows he is coming to the right door, sadaqta, yaa Rasoolullah! When the Prophet (s) returned from Israa’ and Mi`raaj, he described it to Sayyidina Abu Bakr as-Siddiq (r), who said, “I believe anything you say.” It is, yaqoolu li saahibihi laa tahzan inna ‘Llaha ma`na. Allah mentioned in the Holy Qur’an, “He is his Companion, speaking with His Prophet.”

يَقُولُ لِصَاحِبِهِ لَا تَحْزَنْ إِنَّ اللَّهَ مَعَنَا

He says to his Companion, “Don’t be sad for, indeed, Allah is with us.” (Surat at-Tawbah, 9:40)

When Prophet (s) spoke to his Companion in the cave, he said, “Don't be sad, laa tahzan, Allah is with us.” If Allah is with you, meaning if you empty your heart for Allah's Noor to enlighten it, your life will be enjoyment that you may rejoice in Allah’s Mercy. It means you rejoice in the Prophet (s), he is that mercy! So he said, ta`allam al-`ilm wa `allim an-naas, “Study knowledge, teach the people.” Not everyone can be `alim, but everyone can be talib, a student. Fa ta`allamu ‘l-qur’an wa `allimuhu ‘n-naas, “Learn Qur’an and teach it to people.” That means there are two types of knowledge,`Ilm ad-Dunya and `Ilm al-Akhirah: ta`allamu ‘l-`ilm wa `allimu ‘n-naas fa ta`allamu ‘l-qur’an wa `allimu ‘n-naas. Allah recommended`Ilm ad-Dunya through His Prophet (s), when He said, “Learn knowledge, learn Holy Qur'an and teach its Reality to people, and learn the faraa’id and teach it,” wa ta`lamoo faraa’id wa `allimooha. It means to learn Fiqh, study what the Prophet (s) came with and teach the people. Why? Fa innee ‘mrun maqbood, “Verily, I am a human being, Allah is going to take my soul one day.” No one can run away from death. The Prophet (s) is saying, “Allah will take me one day, so study Shari`ah and Haqiqah.”

مَرَجَ الْبَحْرَيْنِ يَلْتَقِيَا نِبَيْنَهُمَا بَرْزَخ ٌ لاَ يَبْغِيَانِ

He has let loosed the two seas meeting together. Between them is a barrier that none of them can transgress. (Surat ar-Rahman, 55:19-20)

Allah made these two oceans come together: the Ocean of Fiqh and the Ocean of Realities! So Prophet (s) is saying, “I am going to leave you. Take that opportunity to learn and study in order that you can disseminate the knowledge to those who come after me,” wa inna ‘l-’ilma sayuqbad, “and, verily,the knowledge will be taken away.” This is from the Signs of the Last Days. When you take knowledge away that means rahmatullah has been lifted up, so what will happen? Fitna. Are we in fitna or not? Yes, big fitna. The Prophet (s) said, al-`ilmu sa-yuqbad wa sa-tazhuru ‘l-fitan, “`Ilm is going to be lifted and confusion will appear everywhere,” hatta yakhtalifu ’l-ithnaan fee fareedah, “until two people will even differ in an obligation to the lowest number of people.” A time will come that you begin to see people arguing on obligations and they don't accept what the other says. For example, both of you, both of them or both of us will differ in an obligation: some say, “You recite Surat al-Fatihah with hands down at your side (or hands up on your chest); you did it right, you followed Sunnah, don't make du`a after prayer.” That is one example of what they are now doing. “Don't listen to this one, don't listen to that one, if you are not with us you will go to Hellfire!” This is what we see today of new madhahib emerging, and they are killing each other, especially in the Middle East, and not only there but here even, everywhere, and not only in regards to knowledge, but in fara'id. If you are praying two raka`ts, the one next to you says you are wrong!

One time when we were young, following Imam Shafi`ee (r), after the prayer we used to say (salaam) to the right and left and then the one on your right will finish the prayer and say to you, “Salaam, taqabal Allah,” and shake your hand, then one person would say, “What is this? This is not Shari`ah, this is more than bid`a, this is kufr! You are adding onto the prayer!” No, I am not adding onto the prayer, I took this example from scholars; I observed Azhari scholars in my home and after salaam they say, “Taqabal Allah.” Some people go so far as to say that it is kufr! What do we expect? This is what the Prophet (s) told us, hattaa yakhtalifu ’l-ithnaan fi ’l-fareedah, “Until you see two people arguing, ‘This is correct, this is not correct,’” not the group, two people. You don’t know what he is going to say to you, he is sitting beside you, after you finish the prayer and say, “As-salaamu `alaykum.” Wa laa yajidaani aahadan yafsilu baynahumaa, “And they will not find anyone to separate them,” because they are not going to listen and the third one will fall into the same problem, arguing. It means argument is going to be everywhere and no one is going to take the opinion of the other. That is arrogance. Prophet (s) said this is going to happen and you are going to see it.

`Abdullah Ibn `Umar (r) related from the Prophet (s):

قال رسول اللّه صلى اللّه عليه وسلم: إن اللّه لا يقبض العلم انتزاعا ينتزعه من الناس ولكن يقبض العلم بقبض العلماء، حتى إذا لم يترك عالما اتخذ الناس رؤوسا جهالا فسئلوا فأفتوا بغير علم فضلوا وأضلوا

Allah will not remove knowledge by extracting it from people, but He will remove it by removing scholars until no scholar is left and people follow ignorant leaders. They will ask them and they will give fatwa with no knowledge, misguiding themselves and misguiding others. (Muslim)

Allah will not take the knowledge from the hearts of people by pulling it out, but rather He will take the souls of the `ulama along with their knowledge. According to Hadith of the Prophet (s), when Allah takes the soul of the person he does not speak although he can still see and hear, he sees the person washing him, and at that time he will be wondering, “What happened?”

The Prophet (s) said, “At that time, Allah will not take the knowledge from the heart, but He will take the soul of the `ulama and when they die there will be no substitute, no one can replace them.” Those who were near the time of Prophet (s) were the best ones including up to today. As time progresses one century after another `ilm will be less. At that time when they need someone to guide them, they will find ru'oosan juhhaalan, ignorant heads, fa aftaw bi-ghayri `ilm, they pretend they are `ulama and they will make fatawa without knowledge. Are we seeing that today or not? I am seeing small and big offices opening and everyone is trying to show that he is right and the rest are wrong. They are not Muslims and even if they are Muslims they go with the trend, with whichever way the wind is blowing. It means what is wrong they say is true and what is true they say is wrong. Fa dalloo wa adalloo, they deviate from real `ilm and they cause you to deviate as they are your teachers. Now those who speak very well in communities defending Islam, they don't pray. I met many of them. Some of them don't fast and they are speaking on behalf of the Muslim community, and this is what the Prophet (s) predicted for people to understand that the time is coming.

Abu Hurayrah (r) narrated that the Prophet (s) said:

لا تقوم الساعة حتى يُقبض العلم، وتكثرَ الزلازل، ويتقاربَ الزمان، وتظهرَ الفتن، ويكثرَ الهرج، وهو القتل، وحتى يكثرَ فيكم المال فيفيض

The Hour will not arise until knowledge is lifted, earthquakes are many, time contracts, chaos is manifest, killing is prevalent, and until there is so much money it spills everywhere. (Bukhari)

“The Day of Judgment will not come until the knowledge is taken.” What is the sign of `ilm being taken? Wa takthur az-zalaazila, a lot of earthquakes; a time is coming where you will see a lot of earthquakes, not just what shakes the Earth but what shakes countries through wars, fitna and confusion. When you see confusion entering in a country you cannot stop it, like what we see now from Ar-Rabee` al-`Arabi, the Arab Spring. It entered some countries seven years ago and is not finished! When it enters it is a cancer, an earthquake attacking the whole community and country.

This is what we are seeing today in many countries in the Middle East that are lands of the prophets, too many problems as Prophet (s) said, wa takthur az-zalaazila wa yataqaarabu ‘z-zamaan, distance and time becomes shrinks, making what is far away near. In previous times if you wanted to go for Hajj from England or other countries, it took one year to reach by boat and in some countries you walked for one year. A long time ago, there was a man from Syria who decided to go for Hajj on foot. With eaxh step he stopped and prayed two raka`ats, and every step was two or three feet. The distance from Sham all the way to Madinatu ‘l-Munawwarah is like 2,500 or 3,000 km, and every step he prayed two raka`ats. It took him one year to get there and another year to come back, that is sincerity. Where are these people today? They disappeared. Now you take a plane and reach in hours, look how time and distance collapsed!

يَوْمَ نَطْوِي السَّمَاء كَطَيِّ السِّجِلِّ لِلْكُتُبِ كَمَا بَدَأْنَا أَوَّلَ خَلْقٍ نُّعِيدُهُ وَعْدًا عَلَيْنَا إِنَّا كُنَّا فَاعِلِينَ

The Day that We roll up the Heavens like a scroll rolled up for books (completed). Even as We produced the first Creation, so shall We produce a new one, a promise We have undertaken [and] truly shall We fulfil it. (Surat al-Anbiya, 21:104)

“The Day when We fold the skies like a book,” everything will fall down. Someone was walking and something fell and broke his hand. When it folds everything inside is smashed and on the Day of Judgment, Allah will open that Sijillaat. May Allah forgive us!

Yataqaarab az-zamaan…, “Distance and time will diminish.” It is happening. Why are scholars not mentioning the Signs of the Last Days? If they mention it, that will make everyone think, it is an awakening, an alarm system that the Prophet (s) gave to the Ummah. “Be careful, it is something big!” Wa yakthur al-harj, too much killing; after the fitaan what will happen? Too much killing, and now bloodshed is everywhere. Even within yourself you are a wounded person, because you are sad about the situation you are in and there is too much money flying between people’s hands. This is what we are seeing, they want to fix everything with money and make projects for people to be aware, so a lot of money is being given out and people have money in their hands. May Allah (swt) protect us from ashra`at as-sa`at! That is what the Prophet (s) said 1400 years ago, as we mentioned a previous Hadith from the Signs of Last Days, taqaarub az-zamaan, “Time and distance will collapse to become near each other.”

قِيلَ : يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ وَمَا تَقَارُبُ الزَّمَانِ ؟ قَالَ : " تَكُونُ السَّنَةُ كَالشَّهْرِ وَالشَّهْرُ كَالْجُمْعَةِ وَالْجُمْعَةُ كَالْيَوْمِ وَالْيَوْمُ كَالسَّاعَةِ وَالسَّاعَةُ كَاضِّطِرَابِ السَّعَفَةِ "

It was asked, “O Messenger of Allah, what is taqaarub az-zamaan?” He said, “The year will be like a month, the month will be like a week, the week will be like a day, the day will be like an hour, and the hour will be like the shaking of a palm leaf.” (Ibn Hibban)

Sahaabah (r) asked, “How is it that time will shrink?” The Prophet (s) said, takoon as-sana ka ’sh-shahr, “You can do in one month what it would take you to do in one year, wa ‘sh-shahr ka ‘l-juma`, what takes you one month will take you one week and the week will be like one day.” I am coming to the most important point: Wa ‘l-yawmu ka 's-sa`ati, “And the day becomes like an hour and the hour becomes like the leaves of the palm tree,” as its leaves are swaying, making a sound in the breeze that might end in one second.

A hundred years ago, if you mailed something from the post office it may take one month to reach, and even earlier than that, mail was sent by horse or pigeon; during war time they sent military secrets via pigeon as far as 400 km. Now with email and Whatsapp it is coming within a second, it no longer takes time, you press “Send” and it is like the leaves of a tree shake and give a sound, Prophet (s) mimicked that for the Sahaabah (r). So the year becomes like month, a month like week, a week like a day, a day like an hour and an hour like a moment. Now in an instant you can send a payment, transfer money. This is what the Prophet (s) said, what kind of heavenly technology did Allah give him to see from 1400 years ago what is coming in the future? May Allah protect us.

We are going through these Signs of the Last Days until Ramadan and will try to cover most of the Hadiths of Prophet (s) on this topic. They will be posted on Sufilive.com and inshaa-Allah when it is finished they will compile a book.

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


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