Every true Muslim is linked to the great creed and way of our forefather Ibraheem AS. The great bounty of Imaan and faith makes us proud bearers of the universal way of Ibraheem AS and everything he stood for. The lessons and teachings of Ibraheem AS are indeed for all and for all time. The basic teaching is to help one transcend the boundaries of materialism and temporary attachment.
Each test of Ibraheem AS was critical and decisive. It was test of human emotion and belonging. That which we hold closest to us – our family, our life, our birthplace etc. Together with the great bounties that Allah Ta’ala blessed him with – the tests were huge.
In the Quran children, wealth and family heritage are identified as the strongest tests of a man’s resolve. Allah Ta’ala reminds us constantly that wealth and children are a trial, and one should never let them conquer our resolve and relationship with the ultimate love,friendship and bond of Allah Ta’ala. When Ibraheem AS moved the knife unhesitantly across the throat of his beloved son, it was an expression of true allegiance and loyalty to his priority in life. Not that his son or family were not beloved or significant, but there was a cause and a command that superceded that.
Today, as followers of this noble and universal creed, we are called upon to conquer and give expression to our faith in accordance with this teaching. Just as Ibrahim AS loved his wife and son most dearly but did not allow those deep human feelings to hinder his friendship with Allah Ta’ala. Precisely so, we have family, children, wealth and things that are beloved. With that, there is the command of Allah that supercedes these attachments. What do we do in the moment of trial determines the state of our faith and the depth of our love and allegiance to Allah Ta’ala.
In Surah Lahab, Allah shows how someone who thought what he owned to be his security and success, failed miserably when the decree of Allah Ta’ala overcame him. Abu Lahab tormented and cursed Nabi (sallahu alayhi wa sallam) throughout. Allah Ta’ala condemns him by name in the Quran and made his an end a wretched one when he was discarded by his ‘beloved’ family and left to die a lonely and painful death.
This is the season in which we surge forward in the love of Allah Ta’ala and seek that close friendship through the lessons of Hajj and sacrifice.
To attain the goal of divine friendship one should
1. Associate with those who have developed a loyal friendship with Allah Ta’ala
2. Engage in the remembrance of the One whose love we seeking, through zikr, Quran recitation,charity and good character
3. Ask Allah Ta’ala constantly to imbue us with this great bounty of divine closeness and recognition.
May Allah Ta’ala choose us to be among his special servants.