This article was translated from Arabic
What a Religion!
By Dr Osama Altikriti (Abu Laith)*
The divine prescription to all people which came in the form of the final message delivered by the seal of prophethood, was that they must live their lives according to the objectives set by Allah Almighty: “Should not He Who has created know? And He is the Most Kind and Courteous (to His slaves), All-Aware” [Qur’an 67:14).
These divine objectives are for the earth to be harvested and constructed, that people, all people, live a joyous life by virtue of every human being living dignified, enjoying the fruits bestowed by Allah (swt): “Verily we have honoured the Children of Adam. We carry them on the land and the sea, and have made provision of good things for them, and have preferred them above many of those whom We created with a marked preferment” [Qur’an 17:70]. Such honour is built upon the fact that humans were granted sound, deciphering and critical minds, after which he or she were granted the choice after the roadmap to life was laid before them: “And whoever follows My guidance, there will be no fear concerning them, nor will they grieve” [Qur’an 2:38], “And whoever turns away from My remembrance – indeed, he will have a depressed life, and We will gather him on the Day of Resurrection blind” [Qur’an 20:124].
Further, Allah Almighty revealed His book as a guide to mankind: “…as clarification for all things” [Qur’an 16:89], which was sealed by the divine declaration: “This day I have perfected for you your religion and completed My favour upon you and have approved for you Islam as religion” [Qur’an 5:3].
Among the divine objectives of life, is that people create good, constructive societies and successful nations, as per His prescription: “O mankind, indeed We have created you from male and female and made you peoples and tribes that you may know one another” [Qur’an 49:13], in which the factors which make life better and which make life worse are outlined, and the ultimate choice is left to mankind. Should they choose correctly, their lives will be blessed and fruitful: “A good land (have you), and a forgiving Lord” [Qur’an 34:15]. Should they choose wrongly however, life will become difficult and stressful: “…that He may make them taste a part of that which they have done” [Qur’an 30:41], “And those cities – We destroyed them when they wronged, and We made for their destruction an appointed time” [Qur’an 18:59].
As such, the path is clear, “To whomsoever among you who wills to walk straight” [Qur’an 81:28], and everyone has been informed of what will be: “The Day when mankind will stand before the Lord of the worlds” [Qur’an 83:6]. Those who choose the path as designed by Allah Almighty shall find what has been promised: “This is what Allah and His Messenger had promised us, and Allah and His Messenger spoke the truth” [Qur’an 33:22], while those who choose differently shall end up enquiring, “Is there any way of return?” [Qur’an 42:44].
Should mankind realise this and comprehended the roadmap towards the pleasure of Allah (swt), it becomes far easier to understand our realities and what brought us here. When the weakest, poorest and most evil reign freely and callously over countries and nations, it is only natural that calamities strike, catastrophes descend and even the supplications of those who are good seem to go unheard: “That is for what your hands have put forth [of evil] and because Allah is not ever unjust to His servants” [Qur’an 8:51].
It is of the infinite bounties of Allah (swt) that opportunities to repent and return to the right path before it is too late, are abundant. Amongst those are seasons in which we are all reminded of such opportunities to change course and to revert to what is best.
Ramadan is such an opportunity, a chance to pursue the fruits of forgiveness, blessings and mercies and to return to Allah Almighty. It is indeed a great month of goodness, infinite bounties and divine gifts, in which those who have sinned can be forgiven, those who have lost the way, can be guided, and those who commit to doing good can see their rewards multiplied. Within it is a night that is better than a thousand months: “The angels and the Spirit descend therein…Peace it is until the emergence of dawn” [Qur’an 97:4-5].
Ramadan in the month of the Qur’an; a constitution for life, a blessing of magnificent proportions, an incredible mercy and a season to cleanse one’s heart and purify one’s soul. It is a chance to exert more effort in performing all that pleases Allah (swt) such as prayer, recitation of the Qur’an, giving in charity, re-establishing good relations with family, relations and loved ones and to remember in supplication and effort, those less fortunate around the world. Such is a guarantee to attain the pleasure of Almighty Allah, have our deeds accepted, our intentions purified, our nation unified under a guided, wise and sincere leadership that would work for the betterment of all mankind.
May He (swt) guide us to attaining His pleasure and reward you all for all your offerings.
*Dr Osama Tawfiq Altikriti, Abu Laith, was born in Tikrit, Iraq in 1939. He worked as a Consultant Radiologist. Dr Osama moved to the UK in the early 70s, where he helped establish and lead Islamic effort. He headed the Muslim Student Society (MSS) and was within the leadership of FOSIS. Dr Osama was a member of the Iraqi Council of Representatives for the Iraqi Islamic Party from 2006 until 2012.
Muslim Association of Britain
20th May 2018 | 4th Ramadan 1439