ISTIQAMAH and The Egyptian Revolution

Bismillah, the first verse of the first "...

Image via Wikipedia


ISTIQAMAH is defined as “steadfastness” or neither pushing on someone (aggression), nor falling back  (capitulation) but standing with strength and conviction on ones values and goal. The goal being the obedience and pleasure of Allah and justice for all as ordained by Him to all His creatures.

Nowhere else in modern history has this been demonstrated more vividly than in the 18 days of Tahrir Square culminating in a modern day almost bloodless revolution:

This lesson and its outcome is well illustrated in the Quran in many verses:

Al-Baqara (The Cow)

وَاسْتَعِينُواْ بِالصَّبْرِ وَالصَّلاَةِ وَإِنَّهَا لَكَبِيرَةٌ إِلاَّ عَلَى الْخَاشِعِينَ (2:45)

WaistaAAeenoo bialssabri waalssalati wainnaha lakabeeratun illa AAala alkhashiAAeena

# 2:45 (Asad) And seek aid in STEADFAST patience and prayer: and this, indeed, is a hard thing for all but the humble in spirit, –

Being shot by the water gun is like a bullet made of water painfully stimulating every nerve on your body without breaking flesh, and yet the brave Egyptians did not break rank in salah.

On another ocasion people of the book stood by the muslims in Salah.

Al-Baqara (The Cow)

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ اسْتَعِينُواْ بِالصَّبْرِ وَالصَّلاَةِ إِنَّ اللّهَ مَعَ الصَّابِرِينَ (2:153)

Ya ayyuha allatheena amanoo istaAAeenoo bialssabri waalssalati inna Allaha maAAa alssabireena

# 2:153 (Asad) O YOU who have attained to faith! Seek aid in STEADFAST patience and prayer: for, behold, God is with those who are patient in adversity. –

When the Egyptian police released the thugs and they started killing and fighting the peaceful demonstrators in the square, then people protected each other with pieces of cardboard and tin but stood with Istiqamah against all adversity

The following is the challenge they now face treating everyone with justice:

An-Nisa (The Women)

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ كُونُواْ قَوَّامِينَ بِالْقِسْطِ شُهَدَاء لِلّهِ وَلَوْ عَلَى أَنفُسِكُمْ أَوِ الْوَالِدَيْنِ وَالأَقْرَبِينَ إِن يَكُنْ غَنِيًّا أَوْ فَقَيرًا فَاللّهُ أَوْلَى بِهِمَا فَلاَ تَتَّبِعُواْ الْهَوَى أَن تَعْدِلُواْ وَإِن تَلْوُواْ أَوْ تُعْرِضُواْ فَإِنَّ اللّهَ كَانَ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ خَبِيرًا (4:135)

Ya ayyuha allatheena amanoo koonoo qawwameena bialqisti shuhadaa lillahi walaw AAala anfusikum awi alwalidayni waalaqrabeena in yakun ghaniyyan aw faqeeran faAllahu awla bihima fala tattabiAAoo alhawa an taAAdiloo wain talwoo aw tuAAridoo fainna Allaha kana bima taAAmaloona khabeeran

# 4:135 (Asad) O YOU who have attained to faith! Be ever STEADFAST in upholding equity, bearing witness to the truth for the sake of God, even though it be against your own selves or your parents and kinsfolk. Whether the person concerned be rich or poor, God’s claim takes precedence over [the claims of] either of them. [150] Do not, then, follow your own desires, lest you swerve from justice: for if you distort [the truth], behold, God is indeed aware of all that you do! –

And here is what the people of the Egyptian revolution will have to think understand and abide by……..another challenge:

Al-Ma’idah (The Table Spread)

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ كُونُواْ قَوَّامِينَ لِلّهِ شُهَدَاء بِالْقِسْطِ وَلاَ يَجْرِمَنَّكُمْ شَنَآنُ قَوْمٍ عَلَى أَلاَّ تَعْدِلُواْ اعْدِلُواْ هُوَ أَقْرَبُ لِلتَّقْوَى وَاتَّقُواْ اللّهَ إِنَّ اللّهَ خَبِيرٌ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ (5:8)

Ya ayyuha allatheena amanoo koonoo qawwameena lillahi shuhadaa bialqisti wala yajrimannakum shanaanu qawmin AAala alla taAAdiloo iAAdiloo huwa aqrabu lilttaqwa waittaqoo Allaha inna Allaha khabeerun bima taAAmaloona

# 5:8 (Asad) O YOU who have attained to faith! Be ever STEADFAST in your devotion to God, bearing witness to the truth in all equity; and never let hatred of any-one [19] lead you into the sin of deviating from justice. Be just: this is closest to being God-conscious. And remain conscious of God: verily, God is aware of all that you do.

It seems as if Allah Subhanawataaala is addressing the Egyptians in the temptation to bend and compromise with neighboring nations, jeopardizing justice and equity:

قَالَ قَدْ أُجِيبَت دَّعْوَتُكُمَا فَاسْتَقِيمَا وَلاَ تَتَّبِعَآنِّ سَبِيلَ الَّذِينَ لاَ يَعْلَمُونَ (10:89)

Qala qad ojeebat daAAwatukuma faistaqeema wala tattabiAAanni sabeela allatheena la yaAAlamoona

# 10:89 (Asad) [God] answered: “Accepted is this your prayer! [109] Continue, then, both of you, steadfastly on the right way, and follow not the path of those who have no knowledge [of right and wrong].”

……..And Inshallah Allah’s promise stands with the steadfast Egyptians and all:

Surah Fussilat

إِنَّ الَّذِينَ قَالُوا رَبُّنَا اللَّهُ ثُمَّ اسْتَقَامُوا تَتَنَزَّلُ عَلَيْهِمُ الْمَلَائِكَةُ أَلَّا تَخَافُوا وَلَا تَحْزَنُوا وَأَبْشِرُوا بِالْجَنَّةِ الَّتِي كُنتُمْ تُوعَدُونَ (41:30)

Inna allatheena qaloo rabbuna Allahu thumma istaqamoo tatanazzalu AAalayhimu almalaikatu alla takhafoo wala tahzanoo waabshiroo bialjannati allatee kuntum tooAAadoona

# 41:30 (Asad) [But,] behold, as for those who say, “Our Sustainer is God,” and then STEADFASTly pursue the right way – upon them do angels often descend, [say­ing:] “Fear not and grieve not, but receive the glad tiding of that paradise which has been promised to you!


We pray that this freedom in Egypt be for all the oppressed nations of the world, and that one does not forget to be steadfast in Deen  when ease comes post revolution:

Ash-Sharh (The Opening Forth)

فَإِذَا فَرَغْتَ فَانصَبْ (94:7)

Faitha faraghta fainsab

# 94:7 (Asad) Hence, when thou art freed [from distress], remain STEADFAST, –

An important illustration of these ayahs is that the steadfastness is in good, not in oppression, and good as defined in the Quran, just and equitable to all His creatures.

End note



One thought on “ISTIQAMAH and The Egyptian Revolution

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s