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Islam and Spiritualism (14 Sep 2017 NewAgeIslam.Com)


Reflections on Qur'anic Message - Part-8: Universal Notion of Taqwa in the Qur’an – A Level Playing Field Of Self (Nafs) - Dictated Moral Imperative for All Humanity



By Muhammad Yunus, New Age Islam

14 September 2017

(Co-author (Jointly with Ashfaque Ullah Syed), Essential Message of Islam, Amana Publications, USA, 2009)

The preceding article probed an early passage of the Qur’an (91:1-10) to evolve the Qur’anic notion of Taqwa as the restraining impulse of man’s inner self, a watchdog against man’s base instincts or gross temptations.

As the Qur’an is virtually a crusade against the base instincts of man, it raises the notion of Taqwa in its opening passage (Surah al-Baqara, 2:2-5) that appears after a short opening prayer (Surah al-Fatiha):

“This is the Divine Writ, in which nothing is doubtful: it has guidance for the morally upright (Muttaqin) (2:2) - who believe in the unseen, perform the prayers, spend out of what God provided for them”(2:3), who believe in the divinity of revelations given to you (O Muhammad) and before you and are certain of the Hereafter (2:4).It is those (Muttaqin) that are on true guidance from their Lord; and it is they (the Muttaqin) who will succeed (attain Falah) (2:5).”

The opening verse 2:2 above clearly implies that only those who are ‘Muttaqi’ – imbued with Taqwa and are not slaves to their base instincts will receive guidance from the Qur’an.

The succeeding verses 2:3-4 recount some virtues of the Muttaqin (plural form of Muttaqi): they will perform prayer and spend in God’s way (2:3) in addition to believing in the divinity of revelations and ultimate accountability to God (2:4).

Ironically, most Muslims argue that those who are regular in prayer and spend in charity (2:3) are the Muttaqin and will receive the guidance of the Qur’an (2:2). Such an interpretation shifts emphasis from Taqwa to prayer and charity and transforms the din of Islam from one that is designed to promote Taqwa to one that is devoted to prayer and charity (2:4). The Qur’an clarifies the primary role of Taqwa in the concluding verse of the passage (2:5):“the Muttaqin are on true guidance from God.” Across it text, the Qur’an repeatedly declares: it is “guidance and counsel for the Muttaqin” (3:138); it is “counsel for the Muttaqin” (24:34).

Taqwa as a Level Playing Field in Spirituality for All Humanity

As Taqwa is intrinsic to the inner self (Nafs) of all mankind as demonstrated in the preceding Reflection, people of any religion can become ‘Muttaqi. Thus in the context of the revelation the Qur’an acknowledges that some among the People of the Book (Christians and Jews) were Muttaqi.

“They are not the same: among the People of the Book is an upright community: they recite God’s messages through the hours of night as they bow down before Him (3:113). They believe in God and the Last Day; enjoin the good, and forbid the evil and hasten to good deeds - it is they who are among the righteous (114). Any good they do, they will not be denied it as God knows the heedful (Muttaqin)” (3:115)

The Qur’an also privileges Taqwa over the symbolism of hajj and fasting rituals and declares.

“Neither the flesh of sacrificial animal nor their blood reaches God, but your Taqwa does indeed reach Him…” (22:37).

“…And take provisions (for hajj), but the best provision is Taqwa…” (2:197).

“You who believe, fasting is prescribed for you as it was prescribed for those before you, so that you acquire Taqwa (2:183).

As Taqwa is the precursor to good and righteous deeds (concluding statement in the preceding Reflection), the Qur’an pairs Taqwa with good deeds to create a spiritual trump card – so to say, for divine approval even in the face of dietary lapses:

“Those who believe and do good deeds shall not be blamed for what they may eat (or drink) so long as they are heedful of Taqwa and believe, and do good deeds; so long as they are heedful of Taqwa, and believe; so long as they are heedful of Taqwa, and do good.(Remember,) God loves the compassionate ” (5:93). [Rendition based on Essential Message of Islam, Ch. 26.2]

From the foregoing illustrations it follows that like good deeds (Reflection 6), Taqwa stands out as the level playing field of spirituality for all believing humanity. Accordingly, the Qur’an declares:

“O People! We have created you as male and female, and made you into races and communities for you to get to know each other. The noblest among you near God are those of you who are the most heedful of Taqwa. Indeed God is All-Knowing and informed” (49:13).

How God will judge the non-believer (atheists, polytheists) activists of divinely ingrained Taqwa (91:1-10, Reflection 7) – who curb their lowly desires and do good deeds– God alone knows.

Finally, to avoid any confusion in religious thoughts a clear distinction must be made between the self (Nafs) dictated moral imperative – Taqwa and Cardinal spiritual obligation of Salat (prayer). We will take it up in our next reflection.

Muhammad Yunus, a Chemical Engineering graduate from Indian Institute of Technology, and a retired corporate executive has been engaged in an in-depth study of the Qur’an since early 90’s, focusing on its core message. He has co-authored the referred exegetic work, which received the approval of al-Azhar al-Sharif, Cairo in 2002, and following restructuring and refinement was endorsed and authenticated by Dr. Khaled Abou El Fadl of UCLA, and published by Amana Publications, Maryland, USA, 2009.

Reflections on Qur'anic Message – Part – 7: Polarity of Goodness and Evil in Human Conscience

URL of Part 7: http://www.newageislam.com/islam-and-spiritualism/muhammad-yunus,-new-age-islam/reflections-on-qur-anic-message-–-part-–-7--polarity-of-goodness-and-evil-in-human-conscience/d/112427

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islam-and-spiritualism/muhammad-yunus,-new-age-islam/reflections-on-qur-anic-message---part-8--universal-notion-of-taqwa-in-the-qur’an-–-a-level-playing-field-of-self-(nafs)---dictated-moral-imperative-for-all-humanity/d/112523

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TOTAL COMMENTS:-   19


  • Are you trying to say that devouring what is forbidden does not include food and drinks?
    By Naseer Ahmed - 10/1/2017 2:57:31 AM



  • Naseer Sb,

    You have placed  good argument based on Yusuf Ali's translation. But your argument will not hold if you take other standard renditions listed below: 

    (5:42) (They are fond of) listening to falsehood, of devouring anything forbidden [akaluna lissuht].

    Sahih International: [They are] avid listeners to falsehood, devourers of [what is] unlawful […

    Pickthall: Listeners for the sake of falsehood! Greedy for illicit gain!

    Yusuf Ali: (They are fond of) listening to falsehood, of devouring anything forbidden…

    Shakir: (They are) listeners of a lie, devourers of what is forbidden;

    Muhammad Sarwar: They deliberately listen to lies (for deceitful purposes) and live on usury. ..

    Mohsin Khan: (They like to) listen to falsehood, to devour anything forbidden….

    Arberry: who listen to falsehood, and consume the unlawful…

    (5:62) Many of them dost thou see, racing each other in sin and rancour, and their eating [uklehum] of things forbidden [suhut]. Evil indeed are the things that they do.

    Sahih International: And you see many of them hastening into sin and aggression and the devouring of [what is] unlawful. How wretched is what they have been doing.

    Pickthall: And thou seest many of them vying one with another in sin and transgression and their devouring of illicit gain. Verily evil is what they do.

    Yusuf Ali: Many of them dost thou see, racing each other in sin and rancour, and their eating of things forbidden. Evil indeed are the things that they do.

    Shakir: And you will see many of them striving with one another to hasten in sin and exceeding the limits, and their eating of what is unlawfully acquired; certainly evil is that which they do.

    Muhammad Sarwar: You can see many of them competing with each other in sin, hostility, and in taking usury. What they had been doing is certainly evil.

    Mohsin Khan: And you see many of them (Jews) hurrying for sin and transgression, and eating illegal things [as bribes and Riba (usury), etc.]. Evil indeed is that which they have been doing.

    Arberry: Thou seest many of them vying in sin and enmity, and how they consume the unlawful; evil is the thing they have been doing.

    (5:63) Why do not the rabbis and the doctors of Law forbid them from their (habit of) uttering sinful words and eating things forbidden? [uklehum us suht]Evil indeed are their works.

    Sahih International: Why do the rabbis and religious scholars not forbid them from saying what is sinful and devouring what is unlawful? ..

    Pickthall: Why do not the rabbis and the priests forbid their evil-speaking and their devouring of illicit gain? …

    Yusuf Ali: Why do not the rabbis and the doctors of Law forbid them from their (habit of) uttering sinful words and eating things forbidden?.....

    Shakir: Why do not the learned men and the doctors of law prohibit them from their speaking of what is sinful and their eating of what is unlawfully acquired? ..

    Muhammad Sarwar: Why did the men of God and rabbis not forbid them from following their sinful words and their consuming of unlawful gains

    Mohsin Khan: Why do not the rabbis and the religious learned men forbid them from uttering sinful words and from eating illegal things. Evil indeed is that which they have been performing.

    Arberry: Why do the masters and the rabbis not forbid them to utter sin, and consume the unlawful? Evil is the thing they have been working.

    (9:29) Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden (la yuharremuna) which hath been forbidden by Allah (ma harramallahu)  and His Messenger, nor acknowledge the religion of Truth, (even if they are) of the People of the Book, until they pay the Jizya with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued.


    By muhammd yunus - 9/23/2017 10:33:26 PM



  • (62:5) The similitude of those who were charged with the (obligations of the) Mosaic Law, but who subsequently failed in those (obligations), is that of a donkey which carries huge tomes (but understands them not). Evil is the similitude of people who falsify the Signs of Allah: and Allah guides not people who do wrong.

    What is that these people are charged with?

    (5:42) (They are fond of) listening to falsehood, of devouring anything forbidden.

    (5:62) Many of them dost thou see, racing each other in sin and rancour, and their eating of things forbidden. Evil indeed are the things that they do.

    (5:63) Why do not the rabbis and the doctors of Law forbid them from their (habit of) uttering sinful words and eating things forbidden? Evil indeed are their works.

    Also the final verdict on the People of the Book who were the direct addressees of the Prophet:

    (9:29) Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger, nor acknowledge the religion of Truth, (even if they are) of the People of the Book, until they pay the Jizya with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued.

     What then is the similitude of those who say that “Those who believe and do good deeds shall not be blamed for what they may eat (or drink)” except  the same as in 62:5 “that of a donkey which carries huge tomes (but understands them not)”?


    By Naseer Ahmed - 9/21/2017 12:16:50 AM



  • Yunus Sb,
    It is you who needs to take a crash course in Quranic Arabic.
    1.       Kafir does not mean disbeliever although some disbelievers are kafir just as terrorist does not mean Muslim although some Muslims are terrorists.
    2.       Mutashaabihat is not an antonym of Muhkamat
    3.       Taqwa means reverence for Allah and not nafs
    etc.
    Show me one mistake that I make. I can show you several more of your mistakes but do not wish to embarrass you beyond making my point.
    By Naseer Ahmed - 9/16/2017 1:11:35 AM



  • Yunus Sb,
    I quote you below verbatim how you ended your argument. Please verify and apologize for your slandering me:
    .........The foregoing proposition may, however, be turned around by arguing that anyone who willfully partakes of the forbidden (haram) category of food defaults on heedfulness (taqwa), and therefore, he must comply with the Qur’anic dietary instructions to avoid incurring blame in God’s sight. God knows best. By muhammd yunus - 9/14/2017 11:04:04 PM
    The God knows best is in the context of your support for your "interpretation" of the verse.

    By Naseer Ahmed - 9/16/2017 12:58:28 AM



  • Naseer Sb,

    You quote my statement:  The Qur’an affirms that all past (sins) are forgiven when the disbelievers embrace Islam. Thus, there can be no question of the Qur’an making the forgiveness of past sins…” Then you state: “The Quran affirms nothing of the sort.”

    I am afraid, you need to hone your exegetic knowledge. This is what the Qur’an says (translation by Yusuf Ali) supporting my statement that you quoted:

    I also do not agree with your concluding remark: “Please do not mislead people. Saying Allah knows best does not absolve you. It is an insult to Allah who has made everything clear in his Book to make everything unclear and muddy and then say Allah knows best!

    You have again misquoted me as saying “Allah knows best” with a innuendo that I used this expression to absolve myself of any blame for committing and error. Your problem verges on cognitive dissonance as I am increasingly noticing. I only said “God alone knows  How God will judge the non-believer (atheists, polytheists) activists of divinely ingrained taqwa (91:1-10, Reflection 7) – who curb their lowly desires and do good deeds.” I did not make any clear statement muddy and put this defensive statement. It only comes up in the context of the verse 49:13.

    My earnest request to you is to begin a crash course on Qur’anic Arabic and reduce your participation in commentary box unless you are paid on word or line basis. You continue to make loose statements – (that I will now onward be keeping a close tab on) and thwart my attempt to present reflections on the Qur’anic message on the strength of my exegetic accomplishments. I look forward to hear from you whether you understand each Qur’anic word in the verses you quote, or simply rely on translations. If latter is the case, you do not really qualify for any serious exegetic debate you will only be obstructing me from sharing my exegetic knowledge with others on this forum and confusing the common readers.
    By muhammd yunus - 9/16/2017 12:04:07 AM



  • Yunus Sb,

    What you have quoted from the verse of Surah 91 means that those who purify their nafs succeed.

    How do we purify our nafs? By practicing Taqwa. Our moral conscience does not come pre-loaded when we are born. We acquire our sense of right and wrong from our interactions with our parents to begin with. The process is both very similar and simultaneous to learning the language by a baby.

    How did the first people acquire the sense of right and wrong? From the scriptures and God's revelations. The Quran and the scriptures and oral divine guidance earlier gave us the furqan or the distinction between right and wrong.

    Taqwa therefore includes training the moral equipment provided by God to us in the form of nafs with the divinely given criteria to distinguish between right and wrong by believing in and studying the scriptures.

    The purification of our nafs is again through taqwa or doing what pleases Allah in all matters such as:
    Charity
    Truthfulness
    justice
    fasting

    etc.

    The nafs is sensitive to whether we are at all times conscious of the presence of God or not and therefore salat is an essential part of the purification process which helps us restrain our base instincts by being conscious of God's presence at all times.

    The verses 2:3 and 2:4 therefore, precisely describe the Muttaqi in 2:2 who is on true guidance. If any of the 5 requirements is missing, there is no assurance that the person is on true guidance. It is also a clear message to all of us on what we need to do to ensure that we are on true guidance.
    I was therefore disturbed when you argued against it in your article and tried to de-emphasise the same which amounts to misleading yourself and others. 


    By Naseer Ahmed - 9/15/2017 11:51:37 PM



  • Naseer Sb.

    You say to me: “you appear to be confusing Taqwa with nafs. While nafs plays a role in determining our behavior, taqwa is simply doing what pleases Allah out of reverence for Him irrespective of the promptings of the nafs”

    I

    All I can say about my definition is that my definition is draws on the concluding part of the following passage of the Qur’an (yellow highlight) as expounded in Reflection 7. to show that taqwa is ingrained in human nafs as a restraining impulse against ‘furujah (what draws man to all that is evil and reprehensible – his base temptation)

    “By the sun and its brilliance; ….and by the man’s inner self (ingrained instincts), and He Who has fashioned it; and Who has inspired it with the temptation of what is evil (fujura) and a restraining impulse against evil (taqwa) - He indeed succeeds who purifies it (his inner self); and he fails who corrupts it (91:1-10).


    By muhammd yunus - 9/15/2017 8:51:11 PM



  • Yunus Sb,

     The impulses for good and evil are in our nafs discussed in detail in my article:

    Islam and Mysticism: Is ‘Nafs’ Soul? (Part - 1)

    You appear to be confusing Taqwa with nafs. While nafs plays a role in determining our behavior, taqwa is simply doing what pleases Allah out of reverence for Him irrespective of the promptings of the nafs. Over a period, a person may train himself and eliminate all evil impulses and have only the good impulses where doing anything that pleases Allah only brings him great elation. Would such a person become not a Muttaqi simply because he has no evil impulses left to restrain?


    By Naseer Ahmed - 9/15/2017 10:35:57 AM



  • Yunus sb says: I do not agree with you at all that I have misrepresented the Qur'anic notion of taqwa as restraining impulse of man’s inner self, a watchdog against man’s base instincts or gross temptations.”

    You are imagining things. So far I have not commented on the meaning you give to taqwa except saying that:

    The muttaqi in verse 2:2 is described in verses 2:3,4. This point is beyond debate.

    Now since you have raised the question of your definition of taqwa, I disagree with it. It clearly means acting out of “reverence for Allah” or as some people say “fear of Allah” but since reverence has the element of love as well as fear of offending a loved one, I prefer reverence. This acting out of reverence for Allah’s commands will necessarily involve among other things “restraining evil impulses” but that is not the meaning of taqwa. The description of the Muttaqi in 2:2 in verses 2:3,4 is one who believes in the Unseen God, believes in the scriptures, establishes regular prayers, spends in charity and has an assurance of the Hereafter. I don’t think any of these 5 things involve “restraining evil impulses”. Also consider the following verse:

    (2:180) It is prescribed, when death approaches any of you, if he leave any goods that he make a bequest to parents and next of kin, according to reasonable usage; this is due from the Muttaqin.

    What evil impulse has to be restrained for a dying man to make a bequest to parents and next of kin?

    Why have you come up with an arbitrary and contradictory definition when everyone else takes the correct meaning which fits all verses that describe taqwa including those in which one is required to “restrain evil impulses”?  Why do you want to restrict yourself to only those items of taqwa that require “restraining evil impulses” and leave out the rest?


    By Naseer Ahmed - 9/15/2017 10:23:19 AM



  • Yunus Sb,

    You say” The Qur’an affirms that all past (sins) are forgiven when the disbelievers embrace Islam. Thus, there can be no question of the Qur’an making the forgiveness of past sins contingent to the doing of good deeds after embracing faith, as the additional qualifying bracket implies.”

    The Quran affirms nothing of the sort. As far as automatic forgiveness of all past sins on becoming Muslim is concerned, there is no such assurance in the Quran unless “they guard themselves from evil, and believe and do deeds of righteousness” in their remaining life and repent or make amends if possible for the self-evident sins like killing, cheating, devouring the property of others wrongfully etc. One could at best expect that past behavior in accordance with the norms of the society to which they belonged earlier which is prohibited in Islam may alone be automatically forgiven on the condition that their future life is free from it.

     

    You ignore the fact that the Arabic word used for dietary prohibitions is حُرِّمَتْ the same word that is used that prohibits marriage to blood relatives etc. By analogy why should not everything described as  حُرِّمَتْ also become equally acceptable?

     

    You also ignore verses from the same Surah 5:3, and the verses that frown on the People of the Book for devouring what is prohibited in the same surah 5:42, 62 and 63 and verse 9:29 from Surah Taubah that punishes them for the same reason. Why do you think Allah has come down heavily on the people of the Book for devouring what is prohibited and given the Muslims a free ride? What make you think that Allah is whimsical and inconsistent? Are you not projecting your own inconsistency and whimsicality onto the Quran?

     

    The following applies to those who mislead (men) by their appetites unchecked by knowledge. Thy Lord knoweth best those who transgress.

    (6:117) Thy Lord knoweth best who strayeth from His way: He knoweth best who they are that receive His guidance. (118) So eat of (meats) on which Allah´s name hath been pronounced, if ye have faith in His signs. (119) Why should ye not eat of (meats) on which Allah´s name hath been pronounced, when He hath explained to you in detail what is forbidden to you - except under compulsion of necessity? But many do mislead (men) by their appetites unchecked by knowledge. Thy Lord knoweth best those who transgress. (120) Eschew all sin, open or secret: those who earn sin will get due recompense for their "earnings." (121) Eat not of (meats) on which Allah´s name hath not been pronounced: That would be impiety. But the evil ones ever inspire their friends to contend with you if ye were to obey them, ye would indeed be Polytheists.

     

     

    Please do not mislead people. Saying Allah knows best does not absolve you. It is an insult to Allah who has made everything clear in his Book to make everything unclear and muddy and then say Allah knows best!


    By Naseer Ahmed - 9/15/2017 6:34:41 AM



  • Dear Naseer Sahab,

    I have tabled the Qur'anic verses for Reflection. I do not agree with you at all that I have misrepresented the Qur'anic notion of taqwa as restraining impulse of man’s inner self, a watchdog against man’s base instincts or gross temptations. Please reflect on the verses and also read my comments against yours for your further clarification. 
    Commentators have connoted taqwa somewhat divergently  as fearing God, heeding God/His guidance, being conscious of God (God consciousness) etc. but in each case what is implicit is to to keep a close watch on one’s base instincts and abstain from all that is evil and reprehensible to avoid incurring divine displeasure.

    You may read my preceding Reflection referenced below for further clarification re the universal notion of taqwa:

    Reflections on Qur'anic message - Part-7. Polarity of goodness and evil in human conscience



    By muhammd yunus - 9/15/2017 6:16:27 AM



  • Naseer Sb, Thanks for your comments re dietary prohibition and taqwa and your remark that my interpretation of the verse 5:93 is faulty. Kindly note that my interpretation is supported by the following arguments in my cited exegetic publication: “Those who believe and do good deeds shall not be blamed for what they may eat (or drink) (fima ta‘imu,) so long as they heed (attaqu), and believe,…… (5:93). The phrase fima ta‘imu (rendered in bold) carries a seeming liberty on what ‘one may eat and drink,’ or, literally what one ‘may have eaten and drank,’ so long as he does good deeds and remains heedful, that is, practices taqwa. Most interpreters have, however, added a qualifying bracket: ‘(in the past)' after the reference to ‘eating’, implying that God will not blame Muslims for what they ate or drank before conversion to Islam, provided they remained committed to good deeds and heedfulness (taqwa) after embracing faith. Such an interpretation has some difficulty. The Qur’an affirms that all past (sins) are forgiven when the disbelievers embrace Islam. Thus, there can be no question of the Qur’an making the forgiveness of past sins contingent to the doing of good deeds after embracing faith, as the additional qualifying bracket implies. Therefore, as advocated by Muhammad Asad, and reflected in our rendering, the ‘eating’ action referred to in the verse applies to any time a person may eat or drink any thing. This verse would appear to remind those believers who may be painstakingly complying with Qur’anic dietary precepts ), that they will be judged primarily on the basis of their deeds and heedfulness (taqwa), rather than by what they ate or drank. This argument is consistent with the Qur’an’s broader message on halal and haram (6:151-153/Ch. 19.1), and can hardly be perceived as a bid at intellectualization, as some may contend. The foregoing proposition may, however, be turned around by arguing that anyone who willfully partakes of the forbidden (haram) category of food defaults on heedfulness (taqwa), and therefore, he must comply with the Qur’anic dietary instructions to avoid incurring blame in God’s sight. God knows best.
    By muhammd yunus - 9/14/2017 11:04:04 PM



  • Naseer Sb,

     Thanks for your comments re the expectation from a muttaqi .

    You have said “What is expected of a Muttaqi is different things depending upon the context.” You are absolutely correct. As expounded in the article, a muttaqi is one who is guided by ” the restraining impulse of man’s inner self.” Accordingly his response will depend upon the situation. You have cited a few examples. Let me cite you the following additional example of who all are mentioned as muttaqin in the Qur’an:

     “who deal justly even with those they may hate” (5:8).

    “(men) who are impartial with their wives if more than one” (4:129).

    “(women) who are not drawn into greed by seeking divorce from their husbands they suspect of adultery or desertion and mutually settle (the matter) amicably” (4:128).

    “(men) who give half the contracted dower if they terminate the marriage before consummation” (2:237).

    “(women) who forgo the contracted dower if they terminate the marriage before consummation” (2:237).

    “who are generous and enjoin what is good” (92:5). 

    “who give from their wealth to become pure (92:18) seeking nothing in return (92:19), seeking only the acceptance of their Lord, the Most High” (92:20).

    “who eschew arrogance and do not commit excesses and do not obstruct others from worshipping in their own way (96:6-14).

    In each noted case the muttaqi is expected to act against his base temptations to be able to conform to listed pattern of behavior. Thus while the muttaqin may be of different categories, each of them is observant of taqwa.


    By muhammd yunus - 9/14/2017 10:53:28 PM



  • In the context of Allah’s commands for performing hajj by those who can afford the expense, the performance of the hajj and the rituals of hajj is showing taqwa. Those who do not perform hajj and its rituals without good reason, are lacking in taqwa or reverence for Allah’s commands. Taqwa is not independent of our deeds, misdeeds and omission to do what is commanded to be done.

    The Quran says in several verses that the evil that you do harms only yourself and the good that you do benefits only yourself. It does not harm/benefit Allah. This is not a license for doing evil or avoiding what is commanded to be done or doing what is prohibited.

    Apart from the good or the harm that we do to the society by our acts, we attract either the Grace or Wrath of Allah based on what we do. Our redemption is in practicing taqwa which means showing reverence for all of Allah’s commands. The benefits of prayer to oneself will not be apparent to one who is neglectful of his prayers.

    Fasting by itself is showing Taqwa besides helping us perform other acts of taqwa which any fasting person does meticulously like observing his daily prayers, reading the Quran, performing Taravi prayers, controlling his anger, giving charity, being truthful and just etc. Without doubt fasting itself is taqwa which helps us do more acts of taqwa and acquire the qualities of a Muttaqi. So, is performing hajj. It teaches us the virtues of sacrifice, patience, and becoming one with all the Muslims  of the world in an act of reverence for Allah.

    I am afraid that Yunus Sb has misunderstood the subject completely right from the description of the people who are on true guidance which is the beginning of Surah Baqarah. These are Muhkamat verses of precise and clear meaning to be taken literally. These are not to be interpreted. Those who interpret, unnecessarily put their spin on what Allah has made clear and mislead themselves and others.


    By Naseer Ahmed - 9/14/2017 7:01:56 PM



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