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    AHMED PATEL's Avatar
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    improving the self and community

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    SELF IMPROVEMENT(TASAWWUF) AND CONNECTING WITH ALLAH TAALA
    Our primary concern should be our internal spiritual state.


    There are two big weaknesses in human beings, lack of thought in words and lack of thought in actions.


    The Qurans first word "iqra" to read obviously states the importance of the written word, because from the understanding of written words come actions.


    We also must understand and appreciate how different cultures use of language, slang, etc, differs. So, our methods and terminology in communication should bear these nuances in mind.


    Also, now is not the time to give simple answers or cliché’s to the very complex problems we have, nor is it the time for untrained and inexperienced people to get involved in matters in which they are not capable and competent.


    It is also not the time to be defensive, insular or closed. Truly a time of humility, critical thinking and self-reflection is upon us like never before.


    Arrogance and pride harm us in both our relationship with Allah and in our relationship with our neighbours.


    Our relationship with Allah ta ala takes priority over everything but our relationship with Allah taalas creation also affects our relationship with Allah ta ala, these two ideas cannot be separated. A good Muslim must be a good neighbour, a good father, a good citizen etc.


    The overall message of prophet Muhammad (pbuh) was of peace and excellence in character.


    To add, the Refinement of our character, our worship, our relationship with Allah ta ala and with all fellow creations must be in a constant state of improvement.


    We must be in a constant process of improvement and self-reformation both in our spiritual lives and our social lives.


    If you are the same person you were five or 10 years ago, you should be concerned as to why there has been no improvement in your social conduct, and your relationship with Allah ta ala.


    Perfect your relationship with Allah ta ala on a deep level and learn your Islam on a deeper level too. Practice and propagate an enlightened level of morals and ethics and you will find inshallah all your social matters will become correct.


    As the world is changing at a rapid rate, be aware of current social issues and how to deal with them effectively. Be involved in all matters where you can benefit the greater society, this means not just in Muslim issues but in all issues affecting the whole of mankind.


    Most of us can only realistically work on a local level. Though our concerns are global we must learn to prioritize and prioritizing is a key word which really needs to be discussed. Unfortunately, over focus on foreign affairs and foreign policy seems to be part of the problem.


    Relying on conspiracy theories and a victim mentality leaves us void of any sense of responsibility.


    We are also forgetting Allah ta ala with regards to blaming powers and nations etc, when ultimately a Muslims heart must only be filled with the awe and power of Allah ta ala alone.


    Take valid criticism as a bitter medicine as the fear of Muslims is not always irrational in some isolated cases and total defensiveness and the denial of some of our issues must be addressed and tackled urgently.
    Self-righteousness has to be eradicated and our introspection increased.


    The greatest resistance is to resist evil desires. The greatest Hijrah is to travel from sin to good.


    Despite the greater situation of the ummah, we must always be in a condition of thanks to Allah taala and constantly thrive to perfect our worship and character, thus tazkiyah ie self-improvement is a constant effort .




    Obeying the law of the land must be part of our rhetoric as it is already part of the Quran and under no circumstance must any un-Islamic and illegal act be given even an iota of justification or understanding.


    Human rights, as well as the rights of all creation, is already agreed upon when one recites the shahadah, in common with "the rest “of humanity.


    The constant need or pressure to condemn or apologise when unfortunate incidents occur is something that needs addressing, as the whole ummah is not responsible for the atrocities of a few,


    The belief in the kalimah already includes condemnation of all illegal, immoral, and inhumane beliefs and actions.



    When our morals and ethics are constantly questioned and we constantly need to prove our humanity, we must respond politely but also have the courage to address some valid grievances against some very evil Muslims, unfortunately.

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    Eric H's Avatar
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    Re: improving the self and community

    Greetings and peace be with you AHMED PATEL;

    Thanks for sharing, when it comes down to the bottom line, we are all created by the same God and many of us live in mixed communities. I love the saying, you will never look into the eyes of anyone who does not matter to God. And I like this story I copied from this forum some time ago, sadly I forgot to copy who posted it first.......


    A man was on his death bed, Someone asked him to give some wise counsel before he departed:

    "When I was young I wanted to change the world and solve its problems, As I got older I realized that perhaps I should lower my sights, I thought I would be better served in changing my country as time went on I realized that people of country could not be changed. I decided to change the people of my town , but they also did not wish to change, When I reached my old age I thought I would try changing my Family, here also I found my endeavors go to waste, try as I might my family members would not change.

    "Now that I am on my death bed, I have realized that if I had sought to improve myself, and removed my own defects, then perhaps my family members would have been influenced. Then seeing the behavior of my family people of my town would have been influenced. By seeing the spiritual change and improvement of the people of my town, the people of my country would have been influenced. And perhaps through the people of my country the world may have been influenced."

    Blessings,

    Eric
    improving the self and community

    You will never look into the eyes of anyone who does not matter to God.

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