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  • Raya Shokatfard


Updated: Jul 13, 2020

By: Raya Shokatfard

The world we live in today is in the midst of constant struggle among those who consider the ultimate goal in this life is to have power over other people, towns, cities and ultimately all nations.

One may ask: then what? What is the end goal?

No one has the right answer – as one ruler dies another like him takes his place.

The world has repeatedly witnessed that no evil system, no matter how strong, will last long.

But even good systems may be replaced by an evil one or vice versa. One may ask: how would these rulers rule if they had firm belief in God, the Day of Reckoning and the realization of their full responsibility for all that they did in this world while God gave them power to rule over people?

Those who are being ruled, however, are at another end of this great test. How should they react? Being subservient? What is the right answer?

Being compliant in order to save oneself from harm may not always be the right answer.

Saving oneself from harm in this world does not necessarily save one in the Hereafter.

How would this topic relate to Muslim communities living in the West?

Let us see their plight.

These Muslims are facing two major problems: One is being affected by an increasing wave of Islamophobia, and the other being affected by secularization. One may bring them physical harm and the other spiritual harm.

In both cases, a weak Muslim may succumb to the societal pressures and adjust to the environment, customs and a way of life other than what may be right—an ultimate loss and one which will have serious consequences in the Hereafter.

Now let us create an imaginary scenario for the sake of activating the sleeping side of our minds.

Let us imagine that Prophet Muhammad is living in America now. How would things change and how would Muslims live with his presence among them?

Unity of the Muslim Nation

He taught courage through trust and reliance in God. He cultivated the love of God in the hearts.

Politically, one can easily imagine that he would attempt to stop the major assaults on the Muslims around the world. He would do that by attempting to solve critical issues with other nations and manifest his power through Divine help.

Also, knowing his history of overcoming his small and large enemies with his wise and divinely guided tactics, many nations would have second thoughts about assaulting any Muslim nation with him present in the world.

Yet, it may be reasonable to think that he would first start with his own nation—the Muslims. A weak nation is not much compared to others. He may not think about encouraging military strength, but instead, bringing Muslims back to the straight path.

The advent of Islam clearly shows that for the first thirteen years in Makkah, Prophet Muhammad’s main job was to fill the hearts with love, fear and knowledge of the oneness of God. He taught courage through trust and reliance in God. He cultivated the love of God in the hearts and minds of the new believers and used wisdom to solve the problems of more senior believers in later years.

In the U.S. the Prophet would use his dynamic leadership to unite the Muslims. He would clearly aim to do away with sectarian differences and would bring everyone together under one banner— “Submission to One God”.

Naturally, Muslims around the world have some very strong commonalities which include believing in the oneness of God and Muhammad as His final Prophet. Thus his word would be welcomed and embraced by all sects and nationalities.

After the unification of the Muslims, the Prophet would certainly continue on strengthening their beliefs through the words of God in the Quran and his own wisdom.

Perhaps the most challenging task for the Prophet would be to reach out to Muslim communities in all corners of the U.S. and plead with them to live in love, fear and hope in God. Would he succeed?

Well, as the stories of the Prophets of the past mentioned numerous times in both the Bible and the Quran, we notice that many would spend their lifetime to warn and many with limited success.

The best example is Prophet Noah who lived over 900 years, warning his people without success, and even his own son did not believe in him and was among the drowned in the flood.

Only one nation, the people of Nineveh, which heeded to the warning of their Prophet, Jonah, and were saved from the punishment of God.

Likewise, the succeeding prophets strove to warn, educate and guide their people. Their job was only to warn, but they knew that the final guidance comes from God. This included Prophet Muhammad, as indicated in the Quran:

{Say (command to Prophet Muhammad) for indeed I am only a Warner.} (Sad 38: 65)

Superstorm Sandy: What Would He Do?

Now let us imagine that Prophet Muhammad was in the US during the recent Hurricane Sandy. How would he react?

First, out of his vast kindness, Prophet Muhammad would express compassion and solidarity with those adversely affected by the tragedy, Muslims and non-Muslims. He would do his utmost to help.

As for the Muslims, he would plead with them to help one another. He is reported to have said:

Whosoever relieves from a believer some grief pertaining to this world, Allah will relieve from him some grief pertaining to the Hereafter.” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

Prophet Muhammad would warn people to take such disasters as a warning similar to those of the past

Prophet Muhammad would of course warn Muslims not to curse the wind as it is a creation of God. In it and through it are goodness, mercy, fertilization as well as disasters, like Sandy, which may be a sign from God.

A Muslim should seek refuge in God from its evil. We have stories of nations being destroyed for not paying heed to the warnings of their messengers. The people of Prophet Hud is one example.

Prophet Muhammad would warn people to take such disasters as a warning similar to those of the past. The difference now is that the occurrence of many disasters are predicted by modern science and technology by institutions like NASA, and significant precautions are taken to reduce damage and save lives, but no system is able to stop or avert it once it is set to occur.

Prophet Muhammad would also remind people about the events taking place prior to the Day of Judgment, the gravity of which is nowhere close to huge disasters that are afflicting the population of the earth in recent years.

In such a day, no one can even withstand the magnitude of the forces descending on them. All will lose consciousness and life, only to be awakened to their final reckoning!

The Prophet would also warn those nations who think they have power over people, that there is a power much greater than theirs!

{…so that you might know that Allah has power over all things and that Allah encompasses all things in His knowledge.} (At-Talaq 65: 12)

Finally, the Prophet might remind his nation to ponder on one of the greatest verses of the Quran, called “the verse of the throne” which is memorized by nearly all Muslims:

{Allah, there is no god but Him, the Living, the Self-Sustaining. He is not subject to drowsiness or sleep. Everything in the heavens and the Earth belongs to Him. Who can intercede with Him except by His permission? He knows what is before them and what is behind them but they cannot grasp any of His knowledge save what He wills. His Footstool encompasses the heavens and the Earth and their preservation does not tire Him. He is the Most High, the Magnificent.} (Al-Baqarah 2: 255)

Would they heed to his warning or choose to stay in state of ignorance and seek the pleasures of this world?


Published on Reading Islam on Thursday, 22 November 2012

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