ALI- IT'S THE ECONOMY
- THE STREET M IMB ARJUMAH KHUTBAH (28 December 2007)webpage: www.geocities.com/khutbahshttp://groups.yahoo.com/group/the_street_mimbar/Suggestions & Criticisms: PLEASE e-mail: khutbahs@...It is in such a manner that We make plain our signs so that the course of thecriminals may become clear.Bismillah Ar-Rahmaan Ar-Raheem.Alhumdulillah. Peace and blessings on Muhammad (sallalahu alaihi wa sallam), his Noble Companions and Family.Brothers and Sisters on As-Siraat Al Mustaqeem....audio on http://www.islamiccenterdc.com/khutbassermons.htm (30-11-2007)ALI-ITS THE ECONOMYIn the course of gaining consciousness of Allahs power and in a direction that gains us the taqwa that is required, we will press on with the consideration of our historical self, recognizing that those who have came before us are responsible for what they did and we (today) are responsible for what we do. We are not going to be held accountable for their deeds; no-one is going to question us for their decisions and they are not going to be accountable for our deeds or decisions. This is in compliance with the understanding of the of the ayahThat was an Ummah that has proceeded. To its advantaged or gain is what it did in accordance and compliance with Allah and to you (is) what you gain once you are in accordance and compliance with Allah and you will not be held responsible for what they did (Surah Al-Baqarah verse 141)Understanding this fact, we continue to learn from ourselves.We spoke at length for scores of weeks about the 1st generations of Muslims, their mistakes as well as their correct in ijtihaads and we have reached the point in time when we realize that we are expressing symptoms of a political failure- not because of the political leadership that we have, but because of the public sentiment that we had. We realized that it is not easy to live through internal clashes, civil strife and Muslims killing other Muslims- this is not easy to learn from or to recall, but these are the facts that we have to understand so that we dont fall into the same mistakes once again. This is also in accordance with understanding Allah when He says to us thatYou have been preceded by other nations, (that being the case) you are required to go into areas, lands and territories of these nations and then consider what happened to those who were accusatory against Allah or defying the truth of Allah or falsifying Allah and the facts from Him (Surah Ahl Imran verse 137)As we move with these divine meanings in times that have past and as we continue our journey in that particular time frame to consider what materialized or happened so that we may gage through the word of Allah and the work of His Messenger. We spoke about the social condition of the people in Iraq who showed signs of failing to obey their leader Ali (radi Allahu anhu) and their leader understood their condition. In one of the correspondence between Ali in Kufa and Abdullah ibn Abbas (radi Allahu anhu) in Al Basra after the encounter in Al Jamal, ibn Abbas complains to ibn Abi Talib about the public attitude- that there is still this what is called at the time Uthmaniyyah in the public mind. One of the sentences in which the Imam answers ibn Abbas, he says pertaining to the inhabitants of Al Basra, he says the people of Basra are where they are because there is an interest that appeals to them and they are waiting for it or there is a punishment that awaits them and they fear it. We covered the exchange of opinions between Ali and the Muslim public and we realized from this exchange between the leader and those who are being led that the leader, himself, felt disappointed concerning the people who are his subjects and he complained. A couple of his famous statements When he would make wudhu, he would say this (referring to his beard; and he put his hand on his beard) is going to be tainted with this (and he put his hand on his forehead; thats in reference to the blood that will flow on from his face). The other sentence that is related to him is the one that says what is keeping the most morbid person from appearing- thats in reference to his assassin. All of this indicates that there is a lack of confidence in the people who are being led. Two features stand out in this relationship between the Imam and the Ummah. The 1st one is (that) the leader never begged, asked or requested the allegiance of this citizenry- never. When the time came and they realized hes the only leader they had, they came to him. He wasnt a person who imposed himself on these people- this is a feature that most of the time is not noticed by most of the Muslims. The 2nd feature is when it came to war he never forced anyone to go to the warfront- never. He would encourage, motivate and stir them, but hed not impose his will upon them. Being that these were the features of his leadership, he had the type of people who began to complain. This was a leader who was concerned with al haqq and al adl and nothing else and they began to lose interest in al haqq and al adl. Some people have a rosy or non-practical view of the 1st generation of Muslims; they think that they could make no mistakes and they were above the average human being- brothers and sisters, committed Muslim- these were human beings just like me and you. What makes them exceptional is their proximity to Allahs Prophet and the further they distance themselves from Allahs Prophet in their behavior, attitude, internal thoughts and social psychology, the more we can understand that Allah and His Prophet were speaking to human beings then, now and until the end of human life. What happened? If we are to use our God-given intellect and mind, when we began to realize that there is a popular failure that is catching up with the Islamic leadership we ask what happened? What is it? Once again, here, we encounter an area in Muslim history and the Muslim public mind that hasnt generated (what we may call) a satisfying answer, but we can attempt to understand what happened. Were not infallible; we understand Allah and His Prophet and with this understanding we venture to answer such a question.Allah says to us in the organic and basic understanding of human nature- here is the words of Allah that describe to us our human nature and the internal inclinations and propensity that come with it. He saysthere is a direction of acculturation or refinement pertaining to this human nature and human disposition and there is a opposite direction of disintegration and destruction (Surah Ash-Shams verse 7-8)If we were to take a look at this human nature in Arabia at that time- in the years of Allahs Prophet this human nature was at work. There were the companions, devotees and disciples of Allahs Prophet who committed themselves thoroughly- to the core- to Allah and His Prophet. In later history they are referred to as Al Muhajireen, Al Ansaar, Al Badryeen, Ridhwaanyeen, As Sabiqeen, etc. (radi Allahu anhum) and then they were those who even though they commercially or conveniently became Muslims, they would be referred to as Al Munafiqeen- and they were in the Masjid, in the battles of the Muslims, (at times), and they were there to show their disloyalty by disagreeing with Allahs Prophet from time to time and from year to year. During the times from Allahs Prophet, these Munafiqeen were known to the public mind; the problem began though after the Prophet passed away and then, this category of people in society became ambiguous. There were at least a couple of segments of society that enjoyed a cover of silence- no one wants to speak about them. One of these is called At Tulaqa, those who were amnestied when Makkah was liberated and those who are called Al Muallafatu Qulubuhum, those who were given a share from the Muslim wealth to win them over and to help their psychology and human nature reconcile with Allah and His Prophet. After the Prophet passed away, we had a very serious and potentially devastating development; and that is referred to as hurub ar-ridda. We had Muslims in the Arabian Peninsula who took up arms and wanted to defeat the central Islamic authority in Al Medinah because they said they wanted to be the Muslims that they wanted to be and they wanted to with-hold their money, revenue and wealth from going to the Islamic treasury. The Muslim mind has not captured- with satisfaction- a societal-social-sociological answer to why this occurred! When Abu Bakr and Umar (radi Allahu anhuma) ruled, they ruled with a keen eye and the supportive help that they had from that proximity of people to the Prophet on the wealth of the Muslims. The people in Arabia were poor, they didnt have budgets, agricultural produce, natural resources and an industrial base all of which generate wealth- this wasnt there; so the problem of money was not a problem to speak about that would erode the social cohesiveness of the Muslims at that time; but something peculiar happened when the 3rd successor to the Prophet, Uthman (radi Allahu anhu) became the leader of the Muslims. Now, wealth became an issue; we have to understand this- brothers and sisters- in light of the movement of people living during that time. The people who were living at subsistence level in Arabia were on the move to richer more promising areas of the world and then people from those areas of the world who were born into affluence were moving into Arabia, Makkah and Al Medinah. There was a movement of affluence to and from Arabia. The restrictions that Abu Bakr and Umar had on that 1st generation of Muslims i.e. that they should not leave and go out to these distant lands were, during the time of Uthman, lifted. Muslim could free to go wherever they wanted to go- who said you have to stay in Medinah? who said you have to stay in Al Hejaz. Uthman opened up with his policies these movements of people that brought with it an attitude that wasnt there during the time of Allahs Prophet- that attitude was the attitude of affluence- to such a degree that we can understand, (if we read these books of history closely), that some of these people who had left Al Hejaz and gone to Ash Shaam, Iraq or Misr, Egypt, and then had come back to Makkah and Al Medinah they would think that they are more cultured than these primitive inhabitants of Al Medinah, Makkah and Al Hejaz; much like todays immigrants who come from the depressed parts of the world and settle in America or Europe- how do they feel towards their original people in Africa and Asia? They feel like they are more cultured, refined and advanced. This was the type of attitude and feelings that these people had towards Abu Bakr and Umar and now, towards Ali. They thought- hes old fashioned; he wants to take us back to the basics in Makkah and Al Medinah at the time of Umar, Abu Bakr and the Prophet- he cant do that! Why? Because theres a new psychology at work and in the phraseology of some people- today they say its the economy stupid. This is what the attitude and mentality of the people at that time was. They were concerned- nay- most of them were obsessed with the economic issue. During Uthmans time, there was an economic opening up; people felt that their markets were thriving and they were making money at the expense of al haqq and al adl, this justice and we saw the corrective movements that was led by what people today call the idealists. These were youth, young people who wanted to correct Uthman and many of these people in this last year of Ali gave up their lives. Some of them were not even young- Ammaar ibn Yaaser (radi Allahu anhu), who died at Siffin- some people who have their information contorted say that even though he was in his 90s when he was at the battlefield- he was still an idealist; he couldnt get the economic argument- the economic argument that lives on today. There was: Muhammed ibn Abi Bakr and Bishr ibn Kinanah who were part of this corrective movement against Uthman who died in Egypt; Mohammed ibn Abi Hudhayfah who died in Ash-Shaam: ibn Harqus who died at An-Nahrawaan and others who were part of this corrective movement against Uthman who are now gone. What is beginning to appear to us is the coming to life of Allahs wordAnd the Arabians word say but we are committed Muslims; Say you are not committed, rather express yourselves as Muslims- as those who acquiesce (Surah Al Hujurat verse 14)They acquiesce to those who have power and being that the Committed Muslims at the time of the Prophet who were in possession of this power at the time when this ayah was revealed, hence they acquiesced.And still, this Imaan and commitment to Allah has not penetrated into your hearts (Surah Al Hujurat verse 14)We have the same type of appearance Muslims today- Muslims by appearance -and they can have any type of historical description you may want to give them- just because someone is a Sunni is not going to make him immune and just because someone is a Shii- they have an economic bug in their psychology; they are convinced mentally that they have to flow with the economic trend of the world. This is nothing new- if you detect these types of people today, we have detected them over 1,300 years ago. Unfortunately, what we have today in the Muslim public are people who can see the facts in history but they cant see them today and we have the other types of Muslims who can see the facts today but they cant relate them to the historical past.. In todays world, as was the case during the time of Ali- remember, towards the end of his life, when he was getting ready to take on the opposite camp, he said to these people who had the economic argument within them; (before that), remember, they said to him after the battle of Al Jamal and Siffin, these people who were looking out for the economic benefits of the war said that this Imam has made their blood halaal to us but have made their wealth, property and money haraam upon us. Who are these? Are these people in the caliber of Abu Bakr and Umar?! Are they in the mould of Bilal and Suhaib (radi Allahu anhuma)?! NO!!! True, these people go to the Masjid, they listen to the Imam (remember, we are speaking about an Imam who was with his people); we thought that this may not have merited any comment, but now, we think it does merit comment. We spoke about Abu Bakr, Umar and Uthman, the three of them, who never secluded themselves from their people- they were in the Masjid, in the public and with you and me, they were not attached with heavy guards around them; if someone voiced a comment of opposition to them, they didnt say throw him in jail!; they listened, heard and lived the particulars and details of the common Muslim man and Ali was in that mould. He wasnt excluded, secluded, sequestered or isolated; he was in and within the lively and daily condition of his own people. He was at the Masjid speaking to them, even though some of them were at the Masjid saying but you are a kaafir. Think about that for one minute- the leader of the Muslims standing up in the assembly, congregation and jamaah of the Muslimeen and speaking to them about their vital issues and then some person or the other stands up and accuses him of kufr in the presence and within the attention of potentially thousands of people who were at the congregational assembly. He takes that in the sense that they have the right to express themselves. Think with us, (for a moment), of the freedom, dignity and rights that the Muslims enjoyed then and now, we dont even have a fraction of it- dare any Muslim anywhere in the Muslim world. If we had a leader who was one-tenth the leader that we are talking about that would stand up in front of public opinion and accuse the leader with the worst accusation that could come to mind- theres nothing worse than telling an Imam that you are a kaafir, and that was done- thats part of our historical self, our historical personality and historical facts. Today, we have military regimes, kill them and ask questions later, emergency laws, states of emergency, tanks and batons in the streets clubbing on Muslims when Muslims just want to express themselves. What a 180 degree reversal! The freedom that Muslim's had to speak their minds and conscience- even when they were wrong- were guaranteed. Today, when we dont have a leadership, we have something like a person who has been imposed on the Palestinians who is obviously doing everything that is wrong- everything- and his people want to demonstrate and express themselves against him and they send in the troops to clubber them in-front of the cameras. Then, when they realize the cameras are there, they say you cant take pictures and you cant roll the film while this is happening. There is a qualitative difference between the Muslims of our historical self way back then and the Muslims of our contemporary selves now and here. (Take a look), this is supposed to be the land of freedom- where have we been for the past 24 years? In the street. This is the land of freedom?!?! They tell us you cannot go into the Masjid to pray inside the MasjidFor certain, these Masajid belong to Allah- evoke none besides Him (Surah Al Jinn verse 18)But here, they have the power and the economy and Muslim public opinion that wants to flow with the power and the economy; they dont want to stand on their principle. (If you) speak to them about al haqq and al adl, they will turn the other way and say, but my livelihood is threatened by al haqq and al adl.And the Arabians word say but we are committed Muslims; Say you are not committed, rather express yourselves as Muslims- as those who acquiesce; And still, this Imaan and commitment to Allah has not penetrated into your hearts (Surah Al Hujurat verse 14)Brothers and sisters, committed MuslimsWe remind you that what we say and express may have an approximation of the whole truth to it; but it is not the whole truth and nothing but the truth as those words belong to Allah and His Prophet. Let us also remind ourselves that what we say about these issues in which we are using the words Sunni and Shii among other words are meant to have us outgrow the tribalism that has become the understanding of the word Sunni and Shii- equally so. There are people who are dying or being killed execution style or through economic means because theres supposed to be some warfare as a natural relationship between Sunnis and Shiis. We say to these strategists with these Shaytaani minds that we will continue to deal with the roots of this problem until we are immune from anyone who comes our way- whether he prays in the Masjid or whether he is flying a fighter bomber- to try and instigate animosity among us, that he will fail. In the mean-time, do we need to improve? Obviously so. Lets give you one example- brothers and sisters- of how far behind we are. It was reported recently that the British Ambassador in Egypt went into a Masjid and how did the Muslims of that Masjid receive him? By chanting the words tala al badru alayna min thaniyatil wada; wa jabash shukru alayna maa daa lillahitha; ayyuhal mabuthu fina jita bil amril muta; jita sharraftal Medinah marhaban yaa khairada. These words were said to the Prophet, and now, Muslims in these types of Masajid have an Ambassador of a state that has a record of hundreds of years of colonialism and imperialism extending to this moment and he enters a Masjid and thats what he hears and you tell us that we dont need to improve!?
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