In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful; blessings and peace be upon Prophet Muhammad s.a.w.
The Declining Day (Al-'Asr)
1. By the declining day,
2. Lo! Man is in a state of loss,
3. Save those who believe and do good works, and exhort
one another to truth and exhort one another to endurance.
TO change environment, sometimes for the five times daily compulsory prayers (fajr, dhuhr, asr, maghrib and isha'), I prayed at several 'masjids' outside my 'kampung'. At a 'masjid', I saw this interesting poster; a sketch of a man's face; there's arrows pointing to his eyes, ears and mouth with 'reminding and advising words' that touched my heart.
The poster was in Malay; it's heading was 'Gaya mati kita bergantung kepada gaya hidup kita' (The way we die depends on how we live) - and regarding the eyes, it noted: "The eyes are always seeing unhealthy things...seeing all kinds of sins...when we are on our death bed (about to die), are we allowed to see 'jannah' (paradise)?"
Regarding the ears, it read: "The ears are not familiar or not interested in listening good things, advises, Islamic knowledge, reminders, 'tazkirah' (lessons), verses from the Qur'an and 'hadith'...then when we are about to die, are the same ears would be given permission to receive with open arms invitation or encouragement from someone to proclaim the 'syahadah' (pledge that there is no god except Allah and Muhammad is His Messenger)?"
About the mouth area it said: "If our tongues, lips and mouths are not familiar in reading the Qur'an and talking about good things but love to talk on bad things, like gossiping, slandering, cursing and abusing...then in our death bed, could the same mouth pledge the 'kalimah', 'Lailahaillallah Muhammadarrasulullah'?"
Based on the poster, it was mentioned three organs or parts of the body that we should guard from going astray. They were the eyes, ears and the mouth. Imam al Ghazali (Abu Hamid al Ghazali Rahimahullah) in 'Bidayatul Hidayah' discussed at length about those organs.
We should look after our body, especially after seven parts of our body; for 'jahannam' (hell) has seven doors and for every door there is a part categorized. And these doors are not specified for any person except that person who disobeys Allah Ta’ala with these seven body parts. They are:
1. The eyes
2. The ears
3. The tongue (mouth)
4. The stomach
5. The private parts
6. The hand
7. The legs/feet
Note that three of the seven parts of our body mentioned are on the face - the eyes, ears and mouth - and as for the stomach too food that enter our body must be first filled inside the mouth. So as for our face, we must be very careful with what we do with the organs on it, because we would be answerable to Allah SWT to what we did with them.
In 'Bidayatul Hidayah', Imam al Ghazali Rahimahullah noted that to know that religion has two conditions; that are (1) to leave that which is forbidden and (2) to do actions of obedience. (The Beauty of Faith)
The leaving of that which is forbidden is harder to do. This is because obedience is carried out by everyone (to some extent) but only the pious leave their desires. This is why Rasulullah s.a.w. (peace be upon him) said, “The Muhajir (one who migrates) is he who migrates from evil and the Mujaahid (warrior) is he who fights against his desires.”
Know! That you will only disobey Allah Ta’ala with your limbs and your limbs are only a bounty from Allah Ta’ala upon you! They are a trust given to you so seek help in the bounties of Allah Ta’ala against His disobedience which is the utmost snub. To behave treacherously with a trust that Allah Ta’ala has given you is an extreme form of haughtiness (arrogance)!
Your limbs will look after you make sure you look after them. It comes in a 'hadith', “You all are guardians and you all will be questioned over those things that you looked after.”
Know that your limbs will bare testimony against you in a presentation given by a eloquent tongue on the day of 'Qiyamah'. You will be led by it at the forefront of all the creations. Allah Ta’ala says in the Qur’an, “On that day, their tongues, hands and feet will bare testimony against them as to what they used to do.” (Surah Nur) and He further states, “On the day there will a seal on their mouth and their hands and legs will testify against them as to what they used to earn.”
Looking back at our own life - perhaps for the last 30, 40 or 50 years after we became 'baligh' (come to age); what had we done with eyes, ears and mouth which were on our face? As for me I am very afraid because they were used for both; good and bad things. Perhaps the bad things surplus the good ones. Yes, there were times we used our eyes to read the Qur'an but there were times we used the same eyes to look at sexy girls...and do not forget all 'those bad stuff' on TV, cinemas and lately internet.
Subhanallah, there were times we used our ears to listen to 'tazkirah' and readings from the Qur'an but with the same ears we listened to bad things such as rumors, slanderous talk and so on. And the same could be said about our mouth, there were times we talk about good things but we were more involved in bad things. Perhaps we still did not realize that we were bad mouthed persons.
Realizing all the sins we had done over the years, especially via those organs on our face; perhaps our face do not fit to be in paradise...yes our face is still not safe but Allah SWT who is The Most Beneficent and Merciful open His arms for us to repent.
Those organs on our face are favors of Allah SWT to us. To many of us, they are 'normal things'; only those who had lost some functions of the said organs or they are totally malfunction, appreciate the blessing of Allah SWT to them.
Perhaps this 'hadith' mentioned in ‘Tambihul Ghafileen’ which was written by Shaikh Abul Laith Samarkandi could give us an understanding about the 'value' of those organs especially those on of face. It was about our eyes of which we always used them to look at 'haram' (forbidden things) especially during this era of information and communication technology (ICT).
Subhanallah, many of us are always with our telecommunication gadgets; perhaps only during our sleep we parted with them. We and our gadgets are 'unseparateable'. The question is what we see via our 'much loved' gadgets? Please answer from deep inside our heart...based on those bad things we see, are our eyes fit to be in paradise?
Angel Jibrail (a.s.) told Rasulullah s.a.w.the following incident about a man in the past who worshiped Allah Ta'ala continuously for 500 years. He was granted a shelter on top of a mountain that was surrounded by salty water. However, Allah caused a stream of sweet water to flow through the mountain for that individual. The man would drink from this water and use it to make ablution. Allah Ta'ala also raised a pomegranate tree from which the man would eat one fruit every day.
One day, this person supplicated to Allah that, "Oh Allah, bring my death while I am in the state of prostration." Allah accepted this dua of his. Whenever Jibrail (a.s.) came down to the Earth, he found this man prostrating to Allah.
Jibrail (a.s.) said that on the day of Judgement, Allah will tell the angels to take this individual to Paradise through His mercy. However, this man will insist that he should enter paradise through the good deeds that he had performed.
Then, Allah will tell the angels to compare his good deeds with the blessings that were given to him in the world. It will be seen that 500 years of his worship does not even equal to the gift of eye sight that was given to him by Allah. The angels will be asked to take him towards the hell fire. Then the man will plead, "Oh Allah! Enter me into Paradise only through Your mercy." At that point, the following discussion will take place between Allah and that man.
Allah: Oh my servant, who created you?
The worshiper: Oh Allah, You have created me.
Allah: Were you created because of the good deeds you have done or because of My mercy?
The worshiper: Because of Your mercy.
Allah: Who granted you the ability to worship for 500 years?
The worshiper: Oh the Almighty! You have granted me that ability.
Allah: Who placed you on the mountain surrounded by the ocean? Who caused a stream of sweet water to flow in between the salty water? Who caused a pomegranate tree to grow for you? Who granted you death while in the state of prostration?
The worshiper: Oh the Sustainer of the Worlds! You have done all of these.
Then Allah will say, "All these have happened due to My mercy and you too will enter Paradise only through My Mercy."