Opinion | 16 July 2014/18 Ramadan 1435

Gaza,Gaza,Gaza… It’s on everyone’s minds and at the forefront of our
concerns. We cannot pick up our phones without a flood of statuses, links
and pictures on Gaza. The radio too, is constantly updating us about the
situation in the holy land of Quds. However what this is doing… is creating
a feeling of helplessness and hopelessness.

The Ummah of Muhammad SAW is not an Ummah of despair. We are an Ummah of
action and Hope. We are a Can-Do Ummah.

This is the month of Ramadhan,where time well spent is the most valuable
asset. It is the month of the Qur’aan. Indeed the first wahi occurred on
Lailatul Qadr. If we are spending a major portion of our time surfing and
reading updates or watching videos on Gaza or we’re going online to post on
FB,Twitter and to engage on online debate…then we need to ask ourselves…is
it not our nafs? How is it benefitting us and the Ummah? except to create a
vicious cycle of despair and anger.

Cursing the Israelis,Benjamin Nethanyahu and the IDF will not increase our
Imaan at all, nor will it assist matters or count as ibaadat or bring us
closer to Allah who is eagerly waiting for us to ask of Him in this month.

Our task at this crucial juncture is not to forward links and to only put
up supportive display pictures but to now engage in actions that increase
our Imaan. Attach ourselves to the reading of the Qur’aan and strengthen
our inner strength. Make an intention that reading this Mubarak
kalaam,where each word was chosen and placed by Allah Himself,to be a
source and strength and nur for the Muslims in Palestine and the world
over,a comfort for their grieving hearts and energy for their spirits. For
those who are travailing in prisons to be empowered against the enemies
desire to break them.

It is the book of Allah,leaving it means us going astray and using it means
us being constructive and stronger. Never underestimate the power of this
Book. There is a reason why it was burnt by those who hated Islam…to cut
off the spring of power of the Muslims.

The battle of Badr was fought in Ramadhan,let’s join the dots to Gaza… Nabi
SAW and the Sahaba RA were still settling in Madina,still not solid on
their feet and the call of the very first Jihad comes. Nabi SAW gathers his
small,faithful band of only 313 soldiers against an enemy who was triple
their size. Outwardly it seemed that it would be a walk in the park to
destroy the Muslims. What does Nabi SAW do in preparation for battle? He
spends the whole night in dua. Earnestly supplicating to Allah
Ta’aala,knocking at His door till Fajr. The concern of Nabi SAW was that if
this small army was wiped out,who will carry the message of Deen to later
generations…to us.

We all have our own Jihads to fight,covering up decently,praying salaah in
a public place unashamedly,wearing the pants above the ankles,moving away
from where gheebat is made…when we do that,just rememember that it is a
realisation of the acceptance of the dua of Nabi SAW the night before Badr.
We cannot separate improving ourselves as Muslims and our concern for the
suffering. Imagine what our duas will be like when we work on our Imaan and
then we pick up our hands and say ‘Oh Allah, Help my Muslim brothers and
sisters in Gaza’ Imagine if we spent the same time that we are using to
surf the net, in dua for them? Do we think that Allah will not accept such
an effort? Where is our hope?

The Conquest of Makkah occurred in Ramadhan as well. When Nabi SAW enters
the city as a victor, he doesn’t enter with any show of power or a
procession but on a donkey,with Usama bin Zaid,the son of his ex-slave
sitting with him and with his head bowed. To teach us that all glory
belongs to Allah alone. He then proceeds to read 8 rakaats of salaah to
thank Allah. Why have we left Quran,salaah and dua as our weapons?

When we seek help, glory and might from any other source besides Allah,we
will be disgraced. May Allah forgive us and protect us. Seek help from the
only BEING that can help us.

This is the month of mercy, of forgiveness and getting close to Allah. It
is the month of charity. Spend on our “pieces of our hearts” in Gaza,
wallah they are truly a part of us. Use our time wisely this Mubarak month
by investing it in the source of power- ibaadat. Then only and then only
will circumstances change. Restrict ourselves to just one click a day on
the update on Gaza,to break the cycle of despondency and let’s get
proactive using the same tactics that every Muslim conqueror did. By
connecting to Allah.

When Umar RA came into the precincts of Al-Aqsa,as conqueror to get the
keys of the city, he was walking,muddied clothes on his body and holding
the reigns of his animal on which his slave,Aslam rode. Abu Ubaidah bin
Jarrah RA suggested to him to change his clothes into a smarter one and to
get onto animal. Umar RA didn’t like this suggestion because he said “We
were a nation who was nothing and Allah gave us izzat through Islam.”

May Allah honour Umar’s conviction that Islam is never about outward
appearances and what we say but rather what we Do. When the priests handed
the keys over to Umar bin Khattaab RA, they said that the conqueror of
Al-Aqsa, was described exactly like this in their scriptures… In muddied
clothes and holding the animal on which his slave would be riding and that
is why they were waiting to see if he matched that description.

Will we use these last few days to get closer to Allah,become simpler?
Prepare an Eid that is easy to host and where we spent a portion on the
people in Gaza? My hope is that this is the tipping point for the Ummah
and using our time correctly, associating with the pious and holding on to
Dua and Zikr…Will win us the freedom of Palestine. Ameen.

The following is a rough transcript of a talk that was given recently. In
the light of all that is happening in Gaza, it indeed provides solid
direction as to what we should do for the plight of the Muslims.