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.
SEVERAL years ago when I was on a train (LRT) on the way to work; an European elderly couple who were seated next to me showed surprised looks on their faces at the way and how busy our people were especially youths in the coach handling and playing with their electronic gadgets including smart phones.
The man look up and whispered: "Aahh, these 'toys'; sometimes they are nuisance. In Europe, we call them 'toys'...at certain times we leave them alone; we want to free ourselves from this madness..."
And in the train; he and his 'partner' (I did not know her status; whether she was his wife or girlfriend or just a friend) were 'free from having those nuisance gadgets''...and they seemed to enjoy that situation but what they witnessed in the train seemed to displease them.
So dear friends and readers; can we free ourselves from those electronic gadgets perhaps for only a day or two. It would be a good idea if we could one day purposely leave our phones at home and learn how to live without it. And you are open to discover the new in you...
Readers might be nervous and afraid trying this, but please do try it and find the 'pleasures and tranquility' of life without having 'those nuisance gadgets'.
One of my friends once said: "I can't live without my handset. If I had left it at home, I (would) have no choice but return home to collect it." See, how these 'toys' have conquered and 'destroyed' our lives! It's scary for the friend to say; "I can't live without it!" as if the phone is a must in our life! Is it true nowadays we are 'hamba' (slaves) of these modern invention?
A few years ago, I attended a funeral one of my nephews. When his body was lowered inside his grave (remember one day we too would be buried inside our graves), he had nothing on him except for his white 'kain kapan' (shroud). So when we were lowered into our graves one day (that day would surely come) where were our worldly belongings including those much sought and treasured 'toys' that we have the guts to say that "we can't live without them?"
Scholars have reminded us again and again that our 'worldly treasures' including money, what more those electronic gadgets, would of no use in the Hereafter. The much sought items there are ‘iman’ (faith) and good deeds; unfortunately the Hereafter is not a place to do good deeds but a place to reaped ‘our best crop’ grown on earth!
Dear brothers and sisters, begin all things with knowledge, for he who knows his own self knows God. So acquire knowledge. It enables its possessor to distinguish right from wrong; it lights the way to heaven; it is our friend in the desert, our society in solitude, our companion when friendless; it guides us in happiness; it sustains us in misery; it is an ornament amongst friends, and an armour against enemies.
With knowledge we would know that our life in this world is not for the sake of material enjoyments of this world alone. Our temporary life here is only a life of probation, for perpetual life in the Hereafter. As we sow here, we shall reap in the Hereafter.
To quote a saying of the Holy Prophet: “This world is the tillage for the Hereafter” i.e. we plough and sow here to reap in the next world. We, Muslims, therefore, cannot afford to live an irresponsible and reckless life.
All life ends in death. Therefore, let us remember that a certain time is fixed for us when we will be abandoned to the darkness of our graves. We should be therefore, consider the passing life of this world as a means towards our ultimate goal. Yes, this material world is not the main object of our life but a means towards a higher goal. The purpose of man’s life is ‘service to Allah’ and nothing else.
This life is a preparation of what Allah has in store for us. The life of the Hereafter is eternal, and it is that which the believer should strive for. Hence let us not be deceived by the glamour and splendour around us. This life should never be wasted by merely seeking a comfortable and rice life of worldly happiness because Allah SWT tells us: “And surely the Hereafter is indeed better than this world.”
Again says the Qur’an, “Every soul shall taste of death” – none shall be made to wander this world for ever. ((Pearls of the Prophet, Islamic Outreah-ABIM)
Recently, over Radio IKIM.fm I heard the renowned intellectual and motivator, Prof Dr Muhaya Muhammad as saying that nowadays almost everybody are busy with their material wealth including their up to date electronic gadgets (toys) and forget about their direct relationship with their Creator, Allah SWT.
We are always busy with our 'toys'; in fact sometimes during our five times daily mass prayers (solat berjemaah) in the masjid, there are bound to be phones ringing with various tones including Gangnam style music.
Oh, it just robs congregators of their 'khusyuk' (concentration); and to those concerned have you not seen Telekom Malaysia (TM) stickers on walls of some masjid, reminding that there are "Tiada Panggilan Sepenting Seruan Illahi" (No Calls Are More Important Than God's Call). So why not just leave your 'toys' behind or at least put them into silent mode?
Prof Muhaya reminded that to have a good relationship with Allah SWT; the key word is to have knowledge. So gain knowledge; but the sad thing about almost all of us is that we spend (or waste?) almost our entire life chasing material wealth and do a lot of aimless thing such as; "how high (how many storeys) is your bungalow; in which country do you spend your holidays, how much money or shares do you have or how many 'As' does your son scored in his SPM examination?"
She said almost all of us are busy or hungry for news and not knowledge "That's why we are eager to know the news posted on the internet; our gadgets are being used to seek for news...what's the latest about this artiste; whose marriage is on the brink of collapsing and so on..."
Prof Muhaya stressed that if we can't feel good when we are alone and have the feeling of tranquility in such situation; it is a sign we do not love ourselves and have problems in our relationship with the Creator, Allah SWT.
Other than friends who are always by our sides, we too need electronic gadgets as though we can't live without them. Frankly speaking; who can go to work or travel without the said items with them?
If we can free ourselves from depending on relatives, friends and of course those gadgets, then we are 'on the open to the straight path' including surrendering ourselves 100 percent to Allah SWT. Isn't that we say at least 17 times during our 'solat' when we recite Surah Al-Fatihah (The Opening) with 'ayah' (sentence) 4 with the meaning "Thee (alone) we worship; Thee (alone) we ask for help."
So find the new in you by starting not to depend on those 'toys'...
Speaking about quality time, we can spend hour after hour reading newspapers and watching TV and nowadays busy 'working' (or playing?) with our electronic gadgets but have we any time to read and try to understand the words of Allah SWT in the Qur'an? Oh, it is a sad thing, we don't have the time for it and the saddest part of our life as His servant is that some of us have the cheek to say that we have no time even to perform or five time daily prayers (solat)!
And with our electronic gadgets, some families go on the brink of collapsing...imagine a husband who is always busy around the clock (at his office) when at home is busy chatting while his wife is 'lost' with her Facebook and their children are away in their own rooms playing games! Well, it what direction we are actually heading?
During Aidilfitri a fews back, I realized a 'new graze' had taken over our previous joyous and meaningful celebration - boys and girls of the young generation (including many of my nieces) were seen very busy with their electronic gadgets; they were playing games, busily texting, e-mailing, chatting and so on, totally ignoring visitors and well-wishers!
Nowadays almost all children have a gadget each; even one niece who is eight years old had 'mastered' 'downloading' items! She also uses terms that I have no idea or heard before.
Hello, readers especially my friends; 'the eagles have landed'; so what have we in store to face 'this new type of invasion'?
I leave it to the experts; but as a 'start' of not becoming a 'hamba' of those electronics gadgets why not leave them behind or at least try not to bring them to masjids or while performing prayers.
Surely we would not like to hear anymore Gangnam style ring tones during our 'solat'!