Friday 19 April 2013

The Day That The Prophet (SAW) Became A Messenger - Surah Al-Muddaththir - Its Relevance for Our Lives

"The sharpness of the command, ‘Stand up and warn!’ marks the transition from being informed, a nabi – a prophet to whom the reality of the hereafter has been made certain – to being burdened with a commission, a rasul, a messenger who must convey that reality and all its diverse impacts on individual and collective transactions, and on the inward and outward disposition of human beings to their Creator. These are matters that we know from sound, authenticated tradition. We know therefore the sabab, the situation, to which certain verses are connected. What then? The situation is the anchor-point, the secure reference, from which meaning opens out. Nobody has ever pretended that, since we can never be in that same situation again, the associated verses do not apply to any other. On the contrary, we all know perfectly well that this surah and the whole Qur’an are proclaimed to us, and so we are informed. It remains for us to show that we do not sit wrapped up in this state of being informed, but carry it into our lives and of those nearest us, as God’s Messenger did, with conviction as to its urgency and its universality. It is obvious that the sabab does not limit the way we explain and understand the verses connected to it; it only anchors our tafsir, so that we do not wander off and get lost in our search for meanings." - Shaykh Dr Mohammad Akram Nadwi (From his notes for Surah Al-Muddaththir)

Surah Al-Muddaththir is a surah which had a great impact in the life of Prophet Muhammad (SAW) and hence it should be so in the life of every believer. Therefore, an opportunity to study this surah in depth with a scholar of the calibre of Shaykh Dr Mohammad Akram Nadwi is truly a blessing from Allah (SWT). In addition to an explanation of this surah, tomorrow's seminar will also address some important guidelines for understanding the Qur'an that many are unaware of.

"In my lecture I will go through the surah verse by verse. In these notes I go over, in relation to this surah, five general matters that often come up when we are trying to understand the Qur’an, and perhaps learn something of how these matters are connected. A: What is the relevance of reports going back to the Companions that inform us about the situation in connection with which certain verses were revealed? B: Reliable Prophetic hadiths and/or Companion reports teach us the tafsir (the explanation) of many verses and passages of the Qur’an. How can we benefit from them? C: What is the relevance of the sheer force of speech, the sheer literary power, of the Qur’an? D: How are we to deal with words and expressions in the Qur’an which the Qur’an itself tells us will strengthen belief in some people and strengthen unbelief in other people? E: The Qur’an says, in several places in different ways, that it is sent down for those who practise taqwa, for example, hudan li-l-muttaqin guidance for those who practise taqwa. Guidance for those who fear the Fire and hope for the Garden. But what about those who do not, what about unbelievers and misbelievers?" - Shaykh Dr Mohammad Akram Nadwi (From his notes for Surah Al-Muddaththir)

Tomorrow in Cambridge (and worldwide through live on-line access), for the first time in the UK, a detailed explanation of Surah Al-Muddaththir by Shaykh Dr Mohammad Akram Nadwi, one of the foremost scholars and thinkers of the Western world.

Surah Al-Muddaththir
Preparation for Public Duty to Islam
The Magnificent Journey Seminar Series

By Shaykh Dr Mohammad Akram Nadwi (Oxford)

Date: Saturday 20th April 2013     Time: 10AM - 6PM

Venue: Cambridge University and Live On-line Web Access << Click Here To Register

"Alhamdulillah I've attended 3 seminars of Sheikh Akram's so far, and Insha Allah I will keep coming back for more! He was introduced to me by my brother who attends his study circles regularly in Oxford. I loved the seminar on Women scholars in Islam, it was a total eye opener into what a Muslim woman's role in society is, which surprisingly (or not) goes against many cultiural and conventionally held notions of Muslim women. My other favourite one was the tafseer of Surat al Fatiha and the last ten surahs, I will not be exaggerating when I say that I truly found it mind blowing. Sheikh Akram is an absolute treasure trove of knowledge but Masha Allah he always carries himself with the utmost humility. I have already had a look at the list of future seminars and I think MEOC is doing a great job in giving the layman an opportunity to have an exciting insight into the world of Muslim scholarship with its choice of highly intellectual topics. Last but not least, its a great opportunity to meet new people of diverse backgrounds. Well done all of you and may Allah reward you for your efforts." - Dr Fathima Shyma Fazal, Boston, Lincolnshire 

"Jazakumullah khair for the efforts of the MEOC for arranging these blessed gatherings of knowledge. The seminars I've attended so far have several elements that make them very special, starting from the choice of topics themselves which cater to the more profound needs of the people rather than addressing some superficial issues that seem to be more fashionable today. Even the content of the seminars and the manner of teaching by Shaikh Akram Nadwi are directly focussed towards developing a deeper understanding of these issues. In these seminars, one gets a glimpse of the years of learning that have gone into the brilliant scholarship of Shaikh Nadwi. Furthermore his knowledge seems to be blessed by an acute understanding of the needs of the Ummah. The seminar on the 'Legacy of Ibrahim (a.s.)' was exceptionally beautiful, wherein, the Shaikh in his own words confessed that he was attempting to transmit, not knowledge, but the state of his heart, to the others present. While the knowledge and the insight that one gains into the Qur'an, the Sunnah and the history of Muslims through these seminars is invaluable, I personally feel that these sessions are more than just one-day courses. I am inclined to call them gatherings of Remembrance of Allah, and we all know the blessings of such gatherings!" - Mohini Verma, PhD Student, Cambridge University

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