The Sunnah: A Source of Civilization


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  • The Sunnah: A Source of Civilization


  • Fiqh of Ayat and Sunnan

    The first of these aspects is the Fiqh of Ayat and Sunnan, namely, the knowledge of the Ayat (Signs) of Allah in the horizons and in souls, and His Sunnah (Allah's Ordinance or Signs) in the universe and the society.  

    It is certain that these signs which are scattered all over the universe are neither perceived nor conceived except by people of knowledge, science and understanding as Al mighty Allah said:  

    "Behold! In the creation of the heavens and the earth, and the alternation of Night and Day, there are indeed Signs for men of understanding." (3:190)  

    "It is He Who maketh the stars (as beacons) for you, that ye may guide yourselves, with their help, through the dark spaces of land and sea, We detail Our Signs for people who know. It is He Who hath produced you from a single soul: then there is a resting place and a repository: We detail Our Signs for people who understand." (6:97-98)  

    The Fiqh of these Signs is always in a state of renewal, for Allah, every now and then, unravels a mystery of the universe, thus He said:  

    "And say, "Praise be to Allah, He will soon show you His Signs so that ye shall know them." (27:93) 

    He also said:  

    "Soon will We show them Our Signs in the (furthest) regions (of the earth), and in their own souls, until it becomes manifest to them that this is the truth." (41:53)

     

    A. The Fixity and Generality of the Sunnan of Allah

    It is of essential importance to know that this world is not run randomly or haphazardly. On the contrary, every thing that happens in the universe is a determined fate. Every single movement is govemed by a certain law which the Qur'an refers to as "Sunnah" ordinance whether universal or social. These ordinances are fixed and unchangeable. They applied in the older times and still apply today and will continue to apply until the end of the time. Furthermore, they deal with the believers as well as the disbelievers. Allah says in the Qur'an: "But no change wilt thou find in Allah's Way (of dealing): no turning off wilt thou fin in Allah's Way (of dealing)" (35:43) When the Prophet's (Peace be upon him) son (Ibrahim) died, he was broken-hearted and his eyes were full of tears yet he never uttered a word that expressed the least dissatisfaction with Allah's Will. Allah destined, on that day, that the sun would eclipse. Yet, people said that this solar eclipse was due to Ibrahim's death as they believed that it only eclipsed when a celebrity died. Now if the Prophet was a false or the kind of person who would take a passive attitude, he would have kept silent concerning this claim which would have added a tinge of greatness and sanctity to him and his family, yet he instantly ascended the pulpit and addressed the people saying:

    "O people! The sun and the moon are nothing more than two of Allah's Signs in the universe. Consequently, they will eclipse neither for someone's birth nor death." [Note: Agreed upon on the authority of Al-Mughirah Ibn Su'bah and others. See Al-Lu `lu' Wa Al-Marjan (No.527,530)]

     

    B. Spread of Degeneration Destroys Nations

    Among Allah's Ordinances is that the prevalence of degeneration and the spread of evil, sinful and corrupt deeds, as well as disorder in the nation, the time for its deterioration and destruction draws near by the minute as Almighty Allah says:

    "Mischief has appeared on land and sea because of (the meed) that the hands of men have earned, that Allah may give them a taste of some of their deeds: in order that they may turn back (from evil)." (30:41)

    It is Allah's Mercy that He does not punish people for all that they have earned, for if He were to punish them, He would not leave a moving creature on the surface of the earth, but He chooses to "let them taste some of that they have done." His Purpose is neither to revenge nor to rejoice at their misfortune but to teach them a lesson and remind them to adopt the right course so that "they may return". But if they did not see through His Mercy and choose not to return to the right course leaving themselves to be swayed by evil and ignorant people, then it would be only natural that they would inevitably be ruined.

    Therefore, when the Prophet (Peace be upon him) was asked: 

    "When will the Hour be established? He answered, `when the trust is lost then expect the Hour.' Then the man asked, "How will it be lost?" The Prophet answered: "The Hour is to be established when evil, and undeserving people rule over the Muslim Nation." [Note: Reported by Al-Bukhari in the book of Faith, on the authorithy of Abu Hurairah]

    Thus, the time of the Hour of the whole universe is the same for every nation for its Hour is established when it falls into imbalance and disorder and when its ignorant and wicked people hold the spotlight whereas its scholars and good people are put into the shade.

    There are many hadiths clarifying the effects of sin and corruption on the moral, social, economical, and political life in general.  

    It suffices to mention the hadith reported by Ibn `Umar saying, "The Prophet (Peace be upon him) approached us and said:

    "O, Muhajirin! (immigrants to Medina) there are five calamities, that if you are tried with them, and I seek Allah's Refuge lest they should befall you. These calamities are: When obscenity and sin spread among people, Allah will punish them through plague and unknown of diseases that never appeared in the time of their forefathers who passed away. When they refuse to pay Zakah, they will be denied water from the sky and they will have rain only for the sake of their animals. When they break the Covenant of Allah and His Prophet, Allah will give power to their enemies over them and let them take some of their property and fortune. When their rulers do not adhere to Allah's Book and attempt to preach and choose of His Laws, Allah will make their rivalries great among themselves. [Note: Reported by Ibn Majah in Al-Fitan (No.4019)]

      There is ellipsis in the hedith . This ellipsis would have meant that "if you are tried with them", no good is to be expected from you, or you will suffer the following predicament or punishment.  

    This warning has come true, particularly when obscenity has been spread and has also been happening in the West throughout history, even propagated as in the case of the West in our time. For Allah let loose upon them unknown diseases and illnesses. Among these diseases is Aids, which has become the death threat to tens of Millions of people, up to this moment they have found no cure for it.

     

    C. Punishment Befalls All

    Among Almighty Allah's Ordinances is that, if evil spreads and no one attempts to stop it, Allah will send down His revenge on both, evil doers for their transgression as well as the passive people who did not try to stop evil due to their apathy and negligence of Almighty Allah's Right. This point has been stressed in the Qur'an when Allah says:  

    "And fear trial which afflicteth not in particular (only) those of you who do wrong." (8:25)  

    In the hadith reported by Abu Bakr (May Allah be pleased with him) he said that, the Prophet (Peace be upon him) said: "If people saw evil and did not try to stop it, they would be soon overtaken by Allah's punishment." [Note: Reported by Ahmad and Ashab Al-Sunnah and Al-Tahawi on the authority of Abu Bakr. Sahih Al- Jami' Al-Saghir (No.1974)]  

    In Another version the Prophet (Peace be upon him) said:"If people saw an unjust man and did not try to stop his injustice, they would be soon gripped by Allan's punishment." [Note: Reported by Abu Dawud, Al-Tirmidhi, and Ibn hibban, the previous reference (No.1973)]

    In a hadith narrated by `Abdullah Ibn `Amr, the Prophet (Peace be upon him) said: "When you see my nation afraid of calling the unjust "unjust" in his face then be certain that they are living dead." [Note: Reported by Ahmad and Al-Bazar]  

    Living dead could also mean that they are lost, thwarted and deprived of Allah's Support.

     

    D. Success Is for the Truth and Those who Uphold It

    Among these ordinances is that, the truth and those who uphold it ultimately and inevitably successful, regardless of how long the people's trial has lasted. On the other hand, falsehood is bound to vanish notwithstanding its temporary power and hegemony, for Almighty Allah says:

    "And say, Truth has (now) arrived, and falsehood perished: For falsehood is (by its nature) bound to perish." (17:81)

      Believers are severely tested and sometimes shaken so that they will gain strength and purity and Allah will distinguish the bad from the good. They will succeed if they strive in the Way of Allah and practice patience and perseverance. Almighty Allah stresses this meaning in the story of Moses after Pharaoh threatened him and his followers as He says:  

    He said their male children will we slay; (only) their females will we save alive; and we have over them (power) irresistible. Said Moses to his people: "Pray for help from Allah, and wait in patience and constancy. For the earth is Allah's, to give as a heritage to such of His servants as He pleaseth; and the end is (best) for the righteous." (7:127,128) 

    Hence, the Prophet's (Peace be upon him) glad tidings to his Companions were "Victory is inevitable, for Allah will make this religion prevail over all religions even though the unbelievers may detest it".

    One day, Khabab Ibn Al-Arat, one of the oppressed people in Mecca who was severely abused and tortured, rushed to Allah's Prophet (Peace be upon him) asking his help. He found him lying on a garment in the shade of the Ka'bah. He asked him "O, Prophet of Allah (Peace be upon him) please ask Allah's Victory for us and call upon Him on our behalf. The Prophet (Peace be upon him) said:"Not long age, a believer used to be dragged to the desert where he was buried up to his neck in the sand. Then the disbelievers used to saw his head into two halfs and combed his body with iron combes until they split his flesh and bones. Yet, all this horrible torture did not force him to turn renegade. By Allah, He will ultimately bestow His Victory on us so much so that the traveler from San'aa on his way to Hadramaut will fear no one except Allah and the wolf lest he should devour his sheep, but you are impatient. " [Note: Reported by Al-Bukhari]  

     

    E. The Nation (in Totality) Will Never Be in Manifest Error to the Core

    Among these ordinances is that the Muslim Nation will never be completely immersed into error for there will always be people who will stand up to any violation of Allah's Decrees, guided by the Qur'an and the Sunnah. They will call upon people to cling to the right, enjoin on them what is good, and forbid them from what is evil as Almighty Allah says:  

    "And of those We have created are people who direct (others) with truth; and dispense justice therewith." (7:181)  

    A great number of hadiths talked about the victorious group of Muslims that will embrace the truth until the Hour is established as follows: 

    "There will always be a group of my Nation who will cling steadfastly to the truth, until the Hour is established." [Note: Reported by Al-Tayalisi, Al-Darimi, and Al-Hakim on the authority of `Umar]

    "There will still remain a group of my Nation who will establish Allah's Ordinance. They will never be harmed by their opponents until Allah's Ordinance prevails while they are victorious over people." [Note: Agreed upon on the authority of Mu'awiyah]

    "There will always remain a group of my Nation who will defend the truth to their last breath and they will win victory until The Day of Judgment". [Note: Reported by Ahmad and Muslim on the authority of Jabir]

    "There will still remain a group of my Nation who will strive and endure hardships for the sake of truth and they will be victorious over their enemies till the last of this group will be killed by Al-Massiah Al Dajjal (Anti-Christ)." [Note:Reported by Ahmad, Abu Dawud, and Al-Hakim on the authority of `Imran lbn Hussain]

    The hadiths reported by Al-Mughirah, Thawban, Abu Hurairah, Korah Ibn lyas, `Uqbah Ibn `Amr, and Abi Omamah concerning this issue are all authentic. [Note: See: Sahih Al-Jami' Al-Saghzir (hadiths No.7287-8296)] One of these hadiths is:

    "Allah will always send people who will consecrate their lives for Islam and for His Obedience until the Day of Judgment". [Note: Reported by Abmad and Ibn Majah on the authority of Abu `Utbbah Al-Khaulani, the previous reference (No.7692)]

     

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