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.
RECENTLY during a 'tazkirah' I heard an 'ustazah' (she is a professor) stressed that a two lettered word in 'ganti nama bahasa Inggeris' (pronoun) that is 'we' is better than a single lettered word 'I' including when performing our religious obligations.
Immediately my mind focused to the 6th 'ayah' (sentence) of Surah Al-Fatehah, 'Ihdinas siraatal mustaqeem' (Guide us on to the straight path) which we read at least 17 times during our 'solat' (prayers).
Even if we perform the prayer individually (not in mass), we recite the same sentence, pleading to Allah SWT to guide us not I (me) to His straight path.
Then there are 'du'as' (supplications) from 'ayahs' in the Qur'an that use 'us' such as: [Who say], "Our Lord, let not our hearts deviate after You have guided us and grant us from Yourself mercy. Indeed, You are the Bestower." (Al-Qur'an, Ali Imran 3:8)
For the five times 'fardhu' (obligatory) prayers, Muslims are very much recommended to perform them in congregation at a 'masjid'. In this congregation prayers, worshipers follow behind an 'imam' (a prayer leader) in rows, shoulder to shoulder, with no distinctions based on race, colour or status.
Muslims all over the world perform the prayer in the same format, direction and Arabic language. This fosters equality and unity in diversity, and establishes a universal bond of brotherhood: 'One Human Family Worshiping One God'. Congregational prayer affirms Islam's universal call: One God Humanity Religion. - Perkim
True, when performing these prayers, all the 'jemaah' (congregators) ask Allah SWT for His true path. But when an individual perform the prayers alone, he/she too among others recites 'Ihdinas siraatal mustaqeem' (Guide us on to the straight path) and why not 'guide me (I) on the straight path?
A good Muslim ask for blessing, mercy and goodness from Allah SWT not only for himself/herself but all Muslims even to the dead. The pronoun 'us' (we) is also used in the most recited 'du'a' - 'Rabbana Aatina Fid Dunya Hasanah Wa Fil Aakhirati Hasanah Wa Qina Azaaban Naar' - (“Our Lord, give us in this world [that which is] good and in the Hereafter [that which is] good and protect us from the punishment of the Fire.” ~ Surah Baqarah 2:201
The pronoun 'we' (us) emphasize the 'jemaah', Muslims were not for individualistic glory - each and every one of us must be ready to give a helping hand to others to be in the straight path. A husband must be ready to guide his wife and children and leaders must do the same to his society.
Everyone is answerable to Allah SWT regarding those under him/her. Regarding the family (husband), Allah SWT says in the Qur'an: "O you who believe! Protect yourselves and your families against a Fire (Hell) whose fuel is men and stones, over which are (appointed) angels, stern and severe, and who disobey not the commands they receive from Allâh, but do that which they are commanded. [Al-Tahrim, 66:6]
So in our prayers, we recite 'du'as', pleading to Allah SWT that He shows all of us His truth path and not only to the individual performing the obligation.
Remember in one of our 'dua's' we recite that Allah SWT blessed Muslim and Muslimah (Muslim men and women) but once I heard an 'ustaz' gave a warning that those persons included in the 'du'a' were 'the practicing Muslims; those who had gone astray from example not performing their five times 'fardhu' prayers sadly were excluded.
He said it was because those who perform the prayers would recite "Ihdinas siraatal mustaqeem" (guide us on to the straight path) at least 17 times a day, pleading to Allah SWT, thus 'insya-Allah' (God Willing), he/she would be guided but those who were 'sombong' (ignorant), they would faced doom.
In our everyday life; 'we' sometimes are referred to a team. A scholar was quoted saying: "The importance of teamwork and collaboration in the workplace is not a new idea. Those words have been used so often in employee handbooks and on company websites that they have come to seem almost meaningless to many people.
"Not only that, but many organizations who claim to value and promote collaboration fail to actually practice what they preach. But the fact is, working together effectively on projects actually does make for a better end result (there’s scientific proof !) and it helps bolster employee morale, as well."
To a communication and marketing 'guru', 'we' is always better than 'I' because: "when you learn this one communication skill you can literally double your results overnight. This one strategy can go a long way to annihilating your insecurities and give you a fresh hope for being the leader you want to be."
Regarding 'we' is always better than I', a poet Mausi wrote:
It’s a hard fact, not a fun, not a lie.
We are not supposed to live forever, certainly one day we have to die.
We is always better than I
Life is like a hotel, we have to stay for a little and then we have to go from here.
When nothing is permanent in this temporary world, then from whom one needs to scare?
For a fixed span of time, we have a certain part to play.
When our role is over, we are not allowed for a second to stay.
When everything is so clear to us then why don’t we learn to share.
May sorrows and joys embrace each other, and everyone should learn the lesson of love and care.
Whole world will be well, when love will touch the limit of time.
Greed, ego, jealousy and selfishness will automatically die.
We is always better than I.