Sunday, 2 September 2012

Don't Fall into the Abyss of Apostasy

It will soon be Ramadhan again. Now would be a suitable time to reflect on our relationship with Allah, and renew the conviction to be better servants. Prayer, fasting, almsgiving and whatever act of ibadah is pointless if in our hearts do not worship Him. Allah is One! To worship anything other than Him is shirk, an unforgiveable sin. If the heart does not worship Allah ultimately it means that the person is not a believer. Muslims know this, yet how many of them have I encountered who resort to other beings to get their wishes granted. My brothers and sisters in Islam, believe in the power of prayer! Mashaallah, God has power over all things; His is the Heavens and the earth and all that they contain. Do not pray yet doubt the power from Whom you ask for help - that would be pushing yourself into apostasy.

I will share one example that frequently surfaces in our society regarding how little faith many people in our community have in the One they claim they submit to. Many people go to bomohs or witchdoctors to fix a problem. For example, I have seen and heard of many cases of a wife who feels threatened with the possibility of a divorce or polygamy. Typically she would look for a miracle potion which could make her husband return to loving her instead of re-evaluating herself to see where she might have gone wrong, correcting it and asking for help from the Almighty. I would like to advise wives that, God forbid, should something like this happen to you, reflect on your conduct and how you treat your husband, and seek help from Allah in patience and prayer. If there is something you should change about yourself, then do so and leave it to Allah to reward you for your efforts.

If you are indeed innocent, or even after your diligent efforts to change your husband is still unappreciative of you, it only means that he is dumb and blind and does not deserve you. If he leaves that is good riddance to bad rubbish. Allah will take care of you, and with your pain your station will rise and you will get Jannah inshaallah. Imagine if you resort to asking for another being for help, not only will you be treating the symptoms instead of the root cause of the problem, but also, worse of all, you will have committed the unpardonable sin of apostasy and incur the wrath of Allah. All your ibadah thereafter will be of no use, nauzubillahi minzalik.

It is the same when a husband is tested with a difficult wife - leaving her or looking for another wife is not the answer to the problem; let alone seeking help from some bomoh who has clearly gone astray. Your wife may well be difficult in reaction to your own conduct. Reflect on how things could improve by looking into yourself and how you can change, and ask Allah for guidance and help. After all Allah has said in the Quran that perhaps you dislike something in which Allah has placed a great deal of good for you (4:19). Another example of weakness in faith is when a person is inflicted with a disease - instead of reassessing their diet and lifestyle and looking for a permissible cure, they assume that are a victim of witchcraft; that someone has cast a malicious spell on them. Now even if black magic was involved, as the world is indeed made of men and jinn whose purpose of creation is to worship Allah (51:56) it would not have happened had Allah not willed it. So seek help from Allah, not the powerless mortals that the devil has made you yield to.

Many people also seem to think apostasy and shirk is when literally worshipping a being other than Allah, or otherwise not acknowledging the Oneness of Allah, but hoping in anything other than Allah is also in essence, associating partners to Him and denying His singularity. In desperation people tend to forget that patience will bring about Allah's mercy (for Allah is with the Patient) and instead look for answers in men who are as powerless as they are, subsequently committing the aforementioned sin. Do not look for quick fix remedies that come from questionable sources. Ask from Allah, be patient and leave it to Him to decide who will come to help you. Do not plot how and who you should approach for help, especially when it involves embellishing stories and telling lies. Even when the road ahead seems bleak, put your trust in Him, and He will show you a way out (65:2). (I have written articles related to this here and here). As another example, I have in countless times experienced awkward situations that I wanted to escape from. By the grace of Allah when I earnestly seek help in Him something will somehow happen to lift the burden from me without anyone getting hurt or offended. Things always happen for a reason and oftentimes the reason will not be apparent until much later. So just be patient and confide in Allah; He is the best helper and confidant )

Allah says ask from Him and He will give (2:186, 40:60). He alone do we worship and from Him do we ask for help (1:5). He says ask in prayer and patience (2:45, 2:153). He is as-Samad, the Eternal Refuge (112:2). What more do we need? I cannot say this enough: sufficient is Allah as Disposer of affairs (4:81). If we do not ask Him what little faith we have in Him, when He indeed is the One who has power over all things? So be mindful of where you place your hope and ask for help, and never fall into the bottomless pit of apostasy and shirk. Believe with all your heart the power of prayer to Almighty Allah. With that note, I wish my readers a blessed Ramadhan; may Allah accept all our efforts to be near to Him and grant us His Mercy in this world and the Hereafter. Ameen.

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