A reflection from the class on Seerah by Sheikh Mokhtar Magraoui, Uskudar, Turkey
Pain is the most potent behavior changer in the world, and if left untrammelled can be severely destructive in its silent force.
The most potent of the category of pain unrecognized by the onlooker is emotional pain. A feeling which only the one who is experiencing can feel like the hot winds in a desert of devastation as it takes over from the inside out laying waste all that is soft, beautiful, sensitive and stills the inner song of the beauty of life.
Allah Subhanawataala who created us knows every cell in our being and how it is feeling and reacting to the pain…especially the pain of loss, ridicule, of knowledge that a loved one is running full speed towards the cliff under which is a pit of FIRE to sure and painful death.
Our dearly beloved Prophet Muhammad pbuh who was revered by his community, loved by his family and spoken and treated tenderly due to the loss of his parents so early in life and looked upon with awe at the blessings that followed him where ever he went, suddenly lost his status when he proclaimed the truth of Allah.
After three years from the first revelation came the command of Allah
(And warn, [O Muhammad], your closest kindred.26: 214
Prophet Muhammad pbuh standing at the table of simple food cooked by Ali RA, which turned to sumptuous, and generous in amount, surrounded by his closest relatives, his uncles and aunt present, declared the message of tawheed.
Those who had dismissed him as being unimportant in the larger scheme of Arabian power, suddenly look at him as if he has become a stranger. They (his family) could no longer understand him and his motivation in turning the Arabian society upside down for no overt personal gain.
Perplexed expressions turned to fear and then to anger as he proclaimed the oneness of God with his gentle but firm and confident manner. The ayahs of the Quran held them mesmerized as they tried to fight off the effect they were having on them and those whose hearts had been veiled like Abu Jahl, cried out with contempt and rationalization of why their tribe needed to stop Muhammad pbuh in his wild chase of “the Unity of God’ challenging all that came before from their recent ancestors, and messing with the fabric of Arabian society.
Pain is what Muhammad pbuh must have felt, Pain for his family, for Allah recognized his anguish and gave him the antidote, step by step by wrapping him in strength, caressing him with his Rahma (And rely upon the Exalted in Might, the Merciful, 26:217) and instructing him where to put his forehead when he wanted the closeness of his Lord. (And your movement among those who prostrate. 26:219)
I learnt a lot from this class personally. I too was in pain a while ago and nothing would ease it. A part of me had died with my nineteen year old son and turned to dust. Yet with time instead of my pain decreasing it was increasing, till I asked Him Subhanawataala for help.
Time does not heal, Allah heals if you ask Him, but you have to ask again and again and then do what He tells you to do. Even Maryam (AS) in her moment of severe labor pain asked and was instructed to shake the tree.
Thus it is through Muhammad pbuh Allah instructs us on how to bear the pain of relatives who are running to the FIRE or loved ones who have left us too early leaving the pain of separation, the pain of ridicule from loved ones, who think that you may be crazed with grief and have thus turned away from all the glitz and glamor that dunya has brought to you on a silver platter.
Yet in these ayahs Allah knows the pain of our Rasool, who calls to Tawheed and his beloved family looks at him as if he has grown horns and then pityingly try to marginalize him until they feel the full force of Allah behind him………..
It is then that the gloves come off especially from Abu Jahl his own father’s brother who becomes his avowed enemy. Such is pain from a beloved family turned enemy.
The steps Allah gives our dearly beloved Prophet pbuh not only to ease his pain but to step forward with the message of the revelation is manifold and one is stupefied with its simplicity.
As the Sheikh unraveled the code of what to do and how to do it, the key is “do” Maryam AS in her pain had to “do” by shaking the tree. Prophet Muhammad pbuh had to invoke Allah with his powerful name of Al Aziz, which wrapped him in the security and power by protecting him (pbuh) and making him untouchable by the enemy.
After the security, Allah provided him with the warmth and comfort of Rahma easing the pain in the soft heart of our Nabi……….who could see his beloved uncles running to the edge of the Cliff below which the Fire of Naar awaited them.
In Surah Baqarah when Prophet Muhammad pbuh words of warning fall on deaf ears, and the lack of results make him sad, Allah says “Convey, don’t convince” Thus the results are in the hands of Allah at all times,
However we are awarded an A for effort and that is as far as we can go: Protect our self with the names of Allah, put our forehead in sajdah and seek His nearness, with patience and remembrance…………and then do Tawakil Allah, for He is the best of those on whom to do Tawakil.
In moments of intense need for Allah you can feel that he sees you, with benevolence and compassion (Who sees you when you arise 26:218).
It is in these moments you can ask Him for anything…even for something which seems impossible, i.e. to lessen the pain of loss of a dear son and he does………..such are the miracles of Allah and such is what he teaches us through His words and the events in the life of our dearly beloved Prophet. (pbuh).
All we have to do is “to arise” and seek him in the stillness of the night, when the ferries are docked, the blue mosque is barely visible, the night lights lose their luster and the Bosphorus has finally gone to sleep.
It is then when the skies open to receive your entreaties to your Lord and you have private time with him. It is in these moments of Qiyam al layl that you are one to one in the private presence of your Lord and you feel that He knows you, He Subhanawataala hears you (Indeed, He is the Hearing, the Knowing.26; 220).
He Subhanawataala actually wants to give you what you need to ease your emotional pain………….but you have to ask and ask again and again sincerely and with absolute humility. You will feel the arrival on the wings of the night laden in layers with the fragrance of forgiveness, love, rahma and the power of Al Aziz which wraps you in security and love, such that even the most powerful cruelty cannot breach those untouchable precincts of your heart guarded by His power, and you rest in it……….till it is Fajr.
You then “arise” and stand to face the world as commanded to our Rasool and through him to us Qum fa inzir………. قُمْ فَأَنذِرْ ﴿٢ Arise and warn (al Quran 74:2)
I acknowledge with deep gratitude that Allah Subhanawataala gave me the opportunity to be present for this class that has filled me with energy and light. May Allah reward our teacher and all those who made this possible.