Tuesday 21 January 2014

People of The Ditch: A Warning for The Persecutors & The Oppressors

Surah Al-Buruj is an amazing surah that gives consolation for the believers even when they are oppressed and persecuted. This is so pertinent for our time when Muslims are facing a lot of difficulty and persecution from people who oppose Eeman and Islam both in the East and in the West.

<<Damned were the makers of the trench, the makers of the fuel-stoked fire! They sat down to watch what they were doing to the believers. Their only grievance against them was their faith in God, the Mighty, the Praiseworthy, to whom all control over the heavens and earth belongs: God is witness over all things. For those who persecute believing men and women, and do not repent afterwards, there will be the torment of Hell and burning.>> [Surah Al-Buruj 85:4-10]

The story behind the people of the ditch is a fascinating story of courage, faith, trust and steadfastness. This amazing incident will be discussed in detail in the seminar on Saturday InshaAllah.

Surah Al-Buruj is followed by Surah Al-Tariq wherein God reminds man of his origin and his end, eliciting the question "How can man become so arrogant and act as if he is not answerable to anyone?". 

<<Man should reflect on what he was created from. He is created from spurting fluid, then he emerges from between the backbone and breastbone: God is certainly able to bring him back to life. On the Day when secrets are laid bare he will have no power and no one to help him.>> [Surah At-Tariq 86:5-10]

The surah then ends with the following powerful words.

<<This is truly a decisive statement; it is not something to be taken lightly. They plot and scheme, but so do I: [Prophet], let the disbelievers be, let them be for a while.>> [Surah At-Tariq 86:13-17]

These two surahs are surahs of great hope and consolation for the believers. Today sadly many of us Muslims have either forgotten or do not really believe in this promise of Allah - the Lord of the universe. Some feel so helpless, depressed and inactive looking at the condition of the Muslims and others take things into their own hands - without due consideration to the guidance - and end up making a greater mess and bringing more harm to the Muslims.

These two surahs also clearly illustrate what is true success and true failure. This is something even we as Muslims are utterly confused about today. Sadly our yardsticks have become just the same as that of everyone else - namely power, wealth, glory, science, technology, culture and influence. But are these really the yardsticks for success? What was the yardstick of the People of the Ditch?

If we are concerned about the situations in Egypt, Syria, Palestine, Bangladesh and other Muslim majority countries, and if we are concerned about the growing hatred towards Muslims in Muslim minority countries then studying and understanding the message of Surah Al-Buruj and Surah At-Tariq is a must. 

Coming up this Saturday InshaAllah is the most fascinating and deep explanation of these two surahs by one of the foremost scholars and thinkers of the Western world today. Please make sure you attend this seminar either onsite in Cambridge or online worldwide.

Surah Al-Buruj & At-Tariq
A Warning for The Persecutors & The Oppressors
By Shaykh Dr Mohammad Akram Nadwi (Oxford)

When: Saturday 25th January 2014

Time: 9:45AM - 6:00PM    Coffee & Registration: 9:30AM

Venue: Cambridge University, Lady Mitchell Hall, Sidgwick Site, Cambridge CB3 9DA

Online: Worldwide - Live & Recorded Access

You can either register for individual sessions or apply for an annual pass with 50% discount.

Individual Seminar Registration: http://courses.meoc.org.uk/p/register.html

Series Registration: http://courses.meoc.org.uk/p/juz-amma.html


"Jazakumullahu khayran. I can't thank you enough for the opportunity. I am so impressed by the Sheikh, subhanallah, mashaAllah. A very rare example of tradition fused with awareness of the environment and reality while not compromising God consciousness. If only there were more like him. Questions, I'm so glad we can ask them even if it's not about the sura. Yes, how else are we to learn from his wisdom and experience if we don't ask? The issues facing Muslims in the West are so many and so confusing and I just love the fact that he does not have an inferiority complex about Islam. It's really sad to see psychologically defeated scholars start throwing away tradition in the name of progress and fitting in. Sheikh Akram Nadwi gives you the sense that the real life is in the hereafter so don't have to get so tied up with the philosophies and controversies that sometimes take away our attention from the real purpose. The onus is on us, are we being pious?" - Aisha Barkatulla, Cambridge

"I recently attended the Tafsir of Surah Nuh. Whilst I had heard much about Shaykh Akram, this was my first class with him. The first thing that you cannot help but appreciate is how the Shaykh hooks you with his connection to knowledge, in a pure sense, there was no need to employ any speaking tactics to keep the attendees engrossed. The Shaykh, made every point relevant, to connect the text with our lives today and our response to get closer to our Creator. Indeed the Shaykh mentioned countless gems that he mentioned offhand but when contemplated on, really struck a chord in the heart. It was also great that the Shaykh was very open to questions, however sensitive, and tackled them head on, without compromising the principles of our faith, exemplifying that Allah azza wa jal has not only blessed him with knowledge, but also wisdom. I don't say this lightly, I genuinely believe, if you have the opportunity to study with the Shaykh, and you don't take it, then you have missed out on tasting the fruits of the knowledge of the Scholarship of our time and land" - Umer Suleman, South London


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