Taraweeh Reflections - Night Six
Posted: 4 Ramadan 1434, 13 July 2013
Here are selected verses from the taraweeh recitation for each night with lessons for our lives today.
قُل لاَّ يَسْتَوِي الْخَبِيثُ وَالطَّيِّبُ وَلَوْ أَعْجَبَكَ كَثْرَةُ الْخَبِيثِ فَاتَّقُواْ اللّهَ يَا أُوْلِي الأَلْبَابِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلِحُونَ
Say, “The corrupt and the good are not equal, even though the abundance of (what is) corrupt may attract you. So, fear Allah, O people of understanding, so that you may be successful.” [Surah Maida, 5:100]
This is the antidote to the tyranny of the majority and the claim to truth of the prevalent. We should not be swayed by numbers alone. We should never be the ones that go with the flow. We judge all things based on their own merit and not on their popularity or preponderance. Good is what Allah declared as good, no matter what the opinion polls say. Wrong is what He declared as wrong, no matter how may pundits line up against it.
يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ عَلَيْكُمْ أَنفُسَكُمْ لاَ يَضُرُّكُم مَّن ضَلَّ إِذَا اهْتَدَيْتُمْ إِلَى اللّهِ مَرْجِعُكُمْ جَمِيعًا فَيُنَبِّئُكُم بِمَا كُنتُمْ تَعْمَلُونَ
O you who believe, take care of your own selves. The one who has gone astray cannot harm you, if you are on the right path. To Allah all of you have to return. Then He will tell you what you have been doing. [Surah Maida 5:105]
Our first responsibility is to reform ourselves for we will stand accountable to Allah for our own actions and inactions, not of others.
Our normal conversations consist of criticizing others. This has some place in the proper scheme of things, when it is part of our conscious effort to promote good and prohibit evil and is guided by the Shariah limits on such conversation. But when this becomes our sole occupation, to the exclusion of our self monitoring and accounting, there is a serious problem.
وَقَالُواْ إِنْ هِيَ إِلاَّ حَيَاتُنَا الدُّنْيَا وَمَا نَحْنُ بِمَبْعُوثِينَ
وَلَوْ تَرَى إِذْ وُقِفُواْ عَلَى رَبِّهِمْ قَالَ أَلَيْسَ هَذَا بِالْحَقِّ قَالُواْ بَلَى وَرَبِّنَا قَالَ فَذُوقُواْ العَذَابَ بِمَا كُنتُمْ تَكْفُرُونَ
They say, “There is nothing but this worldly life of ours, and we are not going to be raised again.” If only you could see when they will be made to stand before their Lord! He will say, “Is this not true?” They will say, “Of course, by our Lord, it is.” He will say, “Then, taste the punishment, for you used to disbelieve.” [Surah An’am 6:29-31]
This was revealed in Makkah and documents the belief of the mushrikeen regarding the afterlife.
The great intellectuals, scientists, professors, and authors of today who hold and promote this view are no better or different than the ignorant people of the pre-Islamic Jahilya society quoted here. All corruption arises from this basic premise that there is no life after this one. If this life is all there is to it, then might must be right because it works and moral principles are meaningless because they require you to give up immediate gratification.
The second verse tells us that visualizing the utter shock of those who subscribe to this view when they come face to face with reality after death is the best answer to their philosophies.
وَإِذَا رَأَيْتَ الَّذِينَ يَخُوضُونَ فِي آيَاتِنَا فَأَعْرِضْ عَنْهُمْ حَتَّى يَخُوضُواْ فِي حَدِيثٍ غَيْرِهِ وَإِمَّا يُنسِيَنَّكَ الشَّيْطَانُ فَلاَ تَقْعُدْ بَعْدَ الذِّكْرَى مَعَ الْقَوْمِ الظَّالِمِينَ
When you see men engaged in vain discourse about Our signs, turn away from them unless they turn to a different theme. If Satan ever makes you forget, then after recollection, sit not in the company of those who do wrong. [Surah Anam, 6:68]
This verse sets the limits on interaction with the non-believers. If in any gathering truth is ridiculed, blasphemy is perpetrated, or someone is making fun of Allah and the Prophet, we must not sit in such company, watch or listen to such a program or participate in the chat. If we find ourselves in it, as soon as we realize it, we must show our disapproval by leaving.
(Taken from the book: Listening to the Qur'an: Insights, Commands, and Guidance for Our Life)