Posted by Zia H. Shah MD - Twitter: @ZiahShah1
Friday Sermon about human compassion and International brotherhood
This sermon was delivered on September 12, 2003 by Hadhrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad, Khalifatul Masih V. The subject of this sermon is humanitarian values in Islam. We will review a few excerpts and quotes from this sermon:
After the initial recitation Huzur said that the Islamic teachings are so beautiful that they have not left out any important aspect of human life. In view of this special Grace of Allah it is our responsibility to make these values of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (saw) an essential part of our lives. Those of us who claim to be the followers of the true of lover of the Holy Prophet Muhammad, that is the Promised Messiah (as), should revisit the conditions of Initiation (Bai’at) in Ahmadiyya Muslim Community. The ninth condition of initiation at the hands of
Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian, the Promised Messiah and Mahdi (peace be upon him) is:
“That he/she shall keep himself/herself occupied in the service of God’s creatures for His sake only; and shall endeavor to benefit mankind to the best of his/her God-given abilities and powers.”
In this sermon Huzur talked about this condition of Initiation that pertains to compassion for the humanity at large, without distinction of religion, creed or ethnicity. In this connection, Huzur recited a verse of Sura Al-Nisa:
“And worship Allah and associate naught with Him, and show kindness to parents, and to kindred, and orphans, and the needy, and to the neighbor who is a kinsman, and the neighbor who is a stranger, and the companion by your side, and the wayfarer, and those whom your right hands possess. Surely, Allah loves not the arrogant and the boastful.” (Al Nisa 4:37)
In this verse Allah the Compassionate has said that we should not only be kind and compassionate to our brothers, relatives, friends and neighbors but also to any fellow human who is yet a stranger to us. If any fellow being has a need from us or can benefit from us then we should be gracious and compassionate to extend the helping hand. We help the fellow humans not for any return but with the pure intention of winning the pleasure of Allah All Mighty. The last part of the verse highlights that if we are not service minded with this pure intention then we will fall in the category of the arrogant and the boastful. Huzur then recited another verse of the Holy Quran;
‘And they feed, the poor, the orphan and the prisoner, while they are not, themselves, yet satiated.’ (Al Dahr 76:9)
This verse can have more than one meanings and one of the meanings is that the true Muslims, do charity for the pleasure of Allah, while they still have unfulfilled needs of their own.
To hear the audio click here
This is a picture of the Kaaba with the surrounding plazas.
“Surely, the first House founded for mankind is that at Becca (Mecca), abounding in blessings and a guidance for all mankind.” (Al Surah Ale-Imran 3:97)
This verse about the Kaaba not only mentions the Muslims, but the whole of humanity, as such it suggests that Hajj and Kaaba foster Universal Brotherhood, which is why we chose this line for our Muslim Times, as a tagline or logo:
The Muslim Times presenting Journey of Man: A Genetic Odessy
By Spencer Wells
DNA is more than 99% similar among all humans, so all claims for discrimination, like caste system, polygenetic theory of human origin or some people being the ‘chosen people’ are only self indulgence. There is very little difference in the intellectual abilities of different races or families. The Journey of Man is a documentary by Spencer Wells, talks about our evolution, our recent history, and how we came to be to the way we are today. The story starts when ancestors of San bushman in Kalahari Desert in Namibia started migrating out of Africa some 50,000 years ago. The findings and data discussed in this documentary are in line with the Universal Brotherhood as expressed in the Quranic verse, “O mankind, We have created you from a male and a female; and We have made you into tribes and sub-tribes that you may know one another.” (Al Surah Al-Hujuraat 49:14)
To watch the documentary click here
How Shariah, an intended compass for peace became a tool of oppression
By Atif Munawar Mir
Shariah is the set of principles and rules outlined in the Holy Qura’n. The Holy Prophet , may peace be on him, further elaborated and illustrated these rules and principles through his deeds also called Sunnah (ways of the Holy Prophet) and his words also referred to as Ahadith (oral traditions of the Holy Prophet). Like the Holy Quran, Sunnah and Ahadith are considered primary sources of Shariah by Muslim scholars. But in order of importance, the Holy Qura’n outranks Sunnah and Ahadith. This is because the Holy Qura’n is the Divine word. It has been preserved in its original form as the Quran itself states and also as history bears witness and is thus considered authentic. The authenticity of Sunnah and Ahadith is sometimes subject to the test of authenticity. Such dissection is not required in all situations. Sunnah and Ahadith are deemed inauthentic, when in conflict with the Holy Qura’n simply because the actions of the Holy Prophet cannot be in conflict with Divine principles. In the West today, Shariah is identified as a source of oppression, violence and tyranny. This misconception of Shariah stems from actions that arise from an out-of-context reading of the Holy Quran and reliance on inauthentic traditions of the Holy Prophet. A study of the Holy Quran suggests that the Holy Quran preaches justice, freedom of conscience and compassion. For instance, the Holy Quran says:
O ye who believe! Be strict in observing justice, and be witnesses for Allah, even though it be against yourselves or against your parents or kindred. Whether he, against whom witness is borne, be rich or poor… (4:136)
It is not righteousness that you turn your faces to the East or the West, but truly righteous is he who believes in Allah and the Last Day and the angels and the Book and the Prophets, and spends his money out of love for Him, on the kindred and the orphans and the needy and the wayfarer and those who ask for charity, and for ransoming the captives; and observes prayer and pays the Zakat… (2:178).
There should be no compulsion in religion. Surely, right has become distinct from wrong…(2:257)
Read further click here
What if the top one percent of USA were Muslims?
By Zia H Shah
The short answer to this provocative question in the title is that the elite 1% will pay Zakat, which is a tax on savings and property. At a suitable rate of taxation, Zakat will have the potential to fulfill all the essential needs of the remaining 99%. If the top one percent in USA were true Muslims, they will gradually and genuinely abolish interest or usury and promote international free trade. This Op-Ed is a short presentation in favor of Zakat and an interest free economy and a more detailed exposition will be published later on. Read on and in the words of Sir Francis Bacon, “Read not to contradict… but to weigh and consider.”
John R. Gribbin is a British science writer, who earned his Ph.D. in astrophysics from the University of Cambridge, writes in his very well written book, the Scientists: A History of Science Told Through the Lives of its Greatest Inventors: “The renaissance was the time when Western Europeans lost their awe of the Ancients and realized that they had as much to contribute to civilization and society as the Greeks and Romans had contributed. To the modern eyes, the puzzle is not that this should have occurred, but that it should have taken so long for people to lose their inferiority complex.” In the same vein, it seems that the 99%, in the form of Occupy Wall Street protests, are finally ready to overcome their awe of the Nobel Laureates in Economics and fancily dressed rich investment bankers and throw away their inferiority complex and begin to understand the financial system. In this age of information, we should be ready to begin to learn from teachers like, Congressman Ron Paul, Prof. Niall Ferguson and Murray N. Rothbard, who have provided adequate education, in form of well written books, to understand and demystify our present day capitalism, grounded in Central Banking and interest based economy.
To read more click here
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Karen Armstrong: Let’s revive the Golden Rule
The Golden Rule in its prohibitive form was a common principle in ancient Greek philosophy. Examples of the general concept include:
“Do not do to your neighbor what you would take ill from him.” – Pittacus
“Avoid doing what you would blame others for doing.” – Thales
“What you do not want to happen to you, do not do it yourself either. ” – Sextus
“Do not do to others what would anger you if done to you by others.” – Isocrates
“What thou avoidest suffering thyself seek not to impose on others.” – Epictetus
“It is impossible to live a pleasant life without living wisely and well and justly (agreeing ‘neither to harm nor be harmed’), and it is impossible to live wisely and well and justly without living a pleasant life.” – Epicurus
“It has been shown that to injure anyone is never just anywhere.” – Socrates, in Plato’s Republic. Plato is the first person known to have said this.
To watch the video click here
Alislam-eGazette Archives regarding Universal Brotherhood and Hajj
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Shareef Odeh, Amir of Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama’at Kababir presenting Holy Quran to Pope Benedict XVI.