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Seerah – Importance of Sunnah

The contemporary world is passing through a period of utmost confusion and unrest. The human values of morality have disappeared. Materialism and sensualism are rampant. The differences of race, colour and nationality are reigning over the face of the so-called advanced civilization. The various “Isms” of the world have proved to be the bewildering monastery of the present age of distress at all levels of human society. With the advancement of science and technology, the morals of humanity are deteriorating day by day in the most degrading manner.

The solution depends upon our most basic concept of life in this universe, that is to say, we should first know the real purpose of our existence on this earth and the ways to achieve it successfully. As our existence on this earth is transitory, and there is an eternal life in the Hereafter, real success would mean success in the Hereafter which depends upon our actions in this world. But, as it is not possible for man with his limited knowledge and understanding, liable to error a he is, to find out for himself, the infallible right course of action ensuring success in this life and in the hereafter, he needs the guidance of his Creator who has created man with a definite purpose. The Holy Quraan (addressing man) says:
“Did you think We had created you for nothing and that you would not be returned to Us.” (Surah Mu’minoon V.110)

Allah Ta’ala, in His infinite mercy, has provided mankind with perfect guidance through the Ambiyaa (Alayhimus Salaam) and the Divine scriptures revealed to them. Of all the Divine scriptures of Allah the Quraan Shareef was the last and is a most comprehensive and complete and practicable everywhere for all times. So is the life pattern of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) the most perfect and all -embracing. Allah sent Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) as the last Prophet and the Quraan Shareef as the last revealed divine scripture and with it he perfected His message.

“This day I have perfected your religion for you and my favour for you and chosen Islam as your religion.” (Surah Maaidah V.3)

Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) set a perfect ideal in his life-example by following which, his companions, the Sahabah (Radiyallahu Anhum) became the torch-bearers of Truth throughout the world not only spreading the divine message of Islam but also forming a practically distinct society and culture based on Islamic principles of truth and righteousness in every walk of human life. History bears ample testimony to this miraculous revolution towards peace and happiness of humanity for whom Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) was sent.

On the other hand, history is replete with the sufferings and destruction of humanity due to man-made laws enforced by selfish and corrupt rulers to safeguard their vested interests and this sad state of affairs still exists in most countries and threatens the very human survival.

Therefore, the best remedy for the present ills of humanity lies in following the Quraan Shareef as explained and practically illustrated by in the teaching and life of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) who through his ideal precept and practice showed how the secular and sacred are blended together into a harmonious, healthy and wholesome personality. The Islamic concept is also quite natural, because life is like an organic whole. Since Islam is a complete code of life, it provides guidance for all aspects of human life, individual and collective. It is not simply a collection of rituals but a comprehensive guide for material as well as spiritual sides of man, which are of course inter-related. The unnatural dualism of the secular and the sacred is quite foreign to the Islamic concept of human life on this earth. This Islamic concept is spread over throughout the Quraan Shareef has been best illustrated in the life of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam).

Let us, therefore, see how the last divine scripture of Allah and life example of the final Rasool of Allah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) can save us from the present miserable demoralization and destruction and help us in achieving the real aim of life.

Allah Ta’ala says in the Quraan Shareef:
1)    “And We did not send you (O Rasulullah Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) but to the entire mankind, as a bearer of good news and a warner.” (Surah Saba V.28)
More than ever before, the greatness and perfection of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam), the greatest benefactor of mankind, is deeply felt and acknowledged even by the non-Muslim world, with a sentiment of admiration and appreciation and appreciation as a unique personality for the guidance of the present afflicted humanity in all walks of life. Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) established forever the supremacy of justice, law and piety of action. He was, indeed, the ideal Rasool - the symbol of modesty, sincerity, truthfulness and true devotion to Allah in seeking His pleasure and thereby setting the highest example of human excellence.

2)    Certainly there is an excellent example for you in Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam). (Surah Ahzaab V.21)
Out of the numerous opinions of non-Muslim scholars about Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) some are mentioned by Dr. Abdul Hayy Arifi (Rahimahullah):

“Lamartine says:

‘If greatness of purpose, smallness of means, and astounding, and astounding results are the three criteria of human genius, who could dare to compare any great man in modern history with Muhammad. The most famous men created arms, laws and empires only. They founded, if anything at all no more than material powers which often crumbled away before their eyes. This man moved not armies, legislations, empires, people and dynasties but millions of men in one-third of the then inhabited world; and more than that he moved the altars, the gods, the religions, the ideas, the beliefs and souls. On the basis of a Book, every letter of which has become law, he created a spiritual nationality which blended together people of every tongue and of every race. He has left for us as the indelible characteristic of this Muslim nationality, the hatred of false gods and the passion for the one and immaterial God.’”
Philosopher, orator, apostle, legislator, warrior, conqueror of ideas, restorer of national dogmas, of a cult without images, the founder of twenty terrestrial empires and of one spiritual empire that is Muhammad. As regards all standard by which human greatness maybe measured we may well ask is there any man greater than he?”
(Historledale Turquie, Paris, Vol.1 pp. 276-277)

Major A.G. Leonard says:

“A man not only great, but one of the greatest (i.e.) truest man that humanity has ever produced. Great not simply as a Prophet, but as a patriot and a statesman; a material as well as a spiritual builder who constructed a great nation, a great empire, and even more than all these, a still greater faith, true, moreover, because he was true to himself, his people, and above all to his God. Recognizing this, he will thus acknowledge that Islam is a profound and true cult, which strives to uplift its votaries from the depths of human darkness upwards into the higher realm of Light and Truth.” (Major Arhurs Glynn Leonard; Islam – Her Moral and Spiritual Value, London 1927, pp.20-21)

George Bernard Shaw observes:

“I have always held the religion of Muhammad in high esteem because of its wonderful vitality. It is only religion which appears to process that assimilating capability to the changing phases of existence which can make itself appeal to every age...”

“I have prophesied about the faith of Muhammad that it would be acceptable tomorrow as it is acceptable to the Europe of today. Medieval ecclesiastics, either through ignorance or bigotry, painted Muhammadism in the darkest colours. They were, in fact, trained to hate both the man Muhammad and his religion. To them Muhammad was Anti-Christ. I have studied him, the wonderful man, and in my opinion far from being an Anti-Christ he must be called the saviour of humanity. I believe that if a man like him were to assume the dictatorship of the modern world he would succeed in solving the problems in a way that would bring it much needed peace and happiness. Europe is beginning to be enamoured of that creed of Muhammad. In the next century it may still go further in recognizing the utility of that creed in solving its problems, and it is in this sense that you must understand my prediction.” (A collection of Writings of some the Eminent Scholars Pg.77)

Napoleon Bonaparte says:

“I hope the time is not far off when I shall be able to unite all the wise and educated men of all the countries and establish a uniform regime based on the principles of the Quraan which alone are true and which can lead men to happiness.”

“Christianity preaches only servitude and dependence. Society of True Christians would not be a society of men.”
(Social Contract – Every Man’s Library Cole’s Page 17)

The life of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) is the Quraan Shareef in practice but since the Quraan Shareef contains only the basic principles of Islam, we as specified in the Quraan Shareef, have to find its detailed interpretation and actual implementation through the saying and deeds of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam). It is, therefore, imperative for us to study the sayings and the life-example of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) whose greatness is unparalleled in the whole creation and who was mercy for both the worlds.

“And We have not sent you except as a mercy unto the worlds.” (Surah Ambiya V.107)

This is then the only path to seek the pleasure of Allah and achieve His blessings in this world and in the Hereafter.

Allah Ta’ala says:

“Say (O Muhammad Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam)! If you love Allah, then follow me Allah will love you and will forgive your sins. And Allah is Most Forgiving, Most Merciful.” (Surah Aal Imraan, V.31)

Hazrat Abu Hurairah (Radiyallahu Anhu) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said, “Every one of my Ummatis will enter Jannat except the one who refuses.” Sahabah (Radiyallahu Anhum) asked, “Who has refused?” Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) replied, “Whoever obeys me will enter Jannah. Whoever disobeys me has refused.” (Mishkaat Pg.27)

Hazrat Anas (Radiyallahu Anhu) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) addressed him saying, “O My Son! If you are able to pass the morning and the evening in such a condition that you do not have any hatred in your heart for anyone then do so.” Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) then said, “O My Son! That is from my Sunnat! Whoever loves my Sunnat loves me. An whoever loves me will be with me in Jannah.” (Mishkaat Pg.30)

Hazrat Irbaadh bin Sariyah (Radiyallahu Anhu) narrates that once Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) led us in Salaah one day. Thereafter Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) turned towards us and delivered a very effective and eloquent sermon which caused the eyes to well-up with tears and the hearts to tremble in fear. One Sahabi said to Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam), “O Rasulullah! This seems as though it is a parting advice. (So if it is then) do advise us (on important matters).”Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said, “I advise you to always fear Allah and keep away from disobedience to Him, to listen and obey to one in authority (the Khalifah or Ameer) even if he is a black slave. For he who survives I will come across serious disputes. (So in that case) hold firm to my Sunnat and the Sunnat of the rightly-guided Khalifahs. Hold fast to it and grip it with your teeth. And stay away from innovations because every innovation is Bida’h and every Bida’h is misguidance.” (Mishkaat Pg.29/30)

Hazrat Abdullah ibnu Amr (Radiyallahu Anhu) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said, “None of you can be a true believer unless his desires become subservient to what I have brought (of guidance and teachings).” (Mishkaat Pg.30)

Hazrat Abdullah ibnu Amr (Radiyallahu Anhu) narrates that Rasululah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said, “The same evils that had inflicted the Bani Israeel will inflict my Ummah – evil for evil – to such an extent that if anyone amongst the Bani Israeel made incest with his mother openly then there would be someone in my Ummah who would perpetrate the same sin. And the Bani Israeel were divided into 72 sects but my Ummah will be divided into 73 sects. All these sects will be in Jahannam except one (which will belong to Jannah).” The Sahabah (Radiyallahu Anhum) asked, “Who will be that sect?” Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) replied, “The one who follows my way and the way of my Sahabah.” (Mishkaat Pg.30)

Hazrat Abu Hurairah (Radiyallahu Anhu) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said, “One who holds fast to my Sunnat in times of corruption among my Ummah, will get the reward of 100 martyrs.” (Mishkaat Pg.30)

Darul Ihsan Media Desk

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