Hundred-word Eulogy

Assalamu alaikum ( peace be with you) dear readers, inshaAllah (God willing) I will follow with a post from another segment from my recent ‘rihla’ journey to Turkey. For now, this blog post I wanted to share. I didn’t know of the ‘hundred word eulogy’ and learning of it was expansive, for it highlights the depth of tolerance, respect, and appreciation present in the old world between traditions.

Towards Enlightment

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In the 1300s, the Chinese Hongwu Emperor wrote the “Hundred-word Eulogy“, which praised the characteristics of the Prophet Muhammad (salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam). Copies of it (like this one) were distributed to mosques throughout China.

Translation:
Since the creation of the universe
God had already appointed his great faith-preaching man,
From the West he was born,
And received the holy scripture
And book made of 30 parts (Juz)
To guide all creations,
Master of all rulers,
Leader of the holy ones,
With support from the Heavens,
To protect his nation,
With five daily prayers,
Silently hoping for peace,
His heart directed towards Allah,
Giving power to the poor,
Saving them from calamity,
Seeing through the Unseen,
Pulling the souls and the spirits away from all wrongdoings,
Mercy to the world,
Transversing to the ancient,
Majestic path vanquished away all evil,
His religion Pure and True,
Muhammad,
The…

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The heart

Thank you Allah for this greatest gift you have given me. The human heart is limitless in its capacity…it is in heartache that we most acutely catch a glimpse of its depth…but realize that in joy it is as boundless.

Then how beautiful the one who knows the heart

“Whether you hide your word or publish it. He certainly has full knowledge of the secrets of all hearts. He is the One that understands the finest mysteries and is well-acquainted with them.” (Surat al-Mulk, 67:13-14)

Al-Kareem – The Most Generous

Assalamu alaikum (peace be with you)

Here’s sharing a painting just finished by God’s grace. Inspired of course by the glorious fall colours. I wanted to put on it ‘Al Kareem’, but I am not sure if it should be on the canvas itself…still contemplating, any thoughts dear readers? 🙂

Al Kareem is one of the ‘names’ of God. It is the superlative form of the word ‘generous’. Meaning the one titled like this ‘The Generous’, is the MOST generous, and there is none as generous as He. Muslims will often say the phrase ‘Allah Kareem’ meaning ‘Allah is the most generous’ out of remembrance of Him, out of wonder, out of praise, out of thanks and simply to express joy.

Looking on and walking in wonder through a forest path in the fall, I cannot but exclaim ‘Allah Kareem’! It strikes me that even in death the Creator is the most generous. Leaves are dying and they could just have rotted and fallen, but look, look what the Creator does. Simply to feast our eyes there is a riot of colour. Truly, God is the most generous and glory be to Him, Subhahnallah!

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– Alhamdulillah, completed work

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– the arabic reads ‘Al Kareem’

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Painting and name hung on the wall.

And whatever good and beautiful in me is from Allah and Allah alone, and whatever in me that is of wrong and ugly is from my own self.

***

Joymanifest

Of Mu’aadh ibn Jabal and Knowledge

YasSarNalQuR'aN

I love this great companion of the glorious Messenger, Prophet Muhammad sal-lal-laahu-alaihi-wa-sallam. His life and teachings, dedication and contribution has been tremendously marvellous. He is truly an inspiration for all times to come.

Prophet Muhammad sal-lal-laahu-alaih-wa-sallam said about Mu`aadh ibn Jabal:

“Verily, when the people of knowledge will be present before their Lord, the Mighty and Sublime, Mu`aadh will be one step ahead of them.”

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Al-Tariq – the night visitor

Assalamu alaikum, peace be with you!

This was written a few days ago and I think inspired by the wonder that is looking at the stars. It is always beguiling to me, amazing, stupendous, incredible…that the light that touches my retina from each star left that star millions of light years ago. I often wonder how those self same stars I am casting my sight upon are at the moment I am looking at them. One chapter or sura of the Quran is called al-Taariq’. ‘taariq’ is translated as ‘the night visitor’. There are various interpretations on what that really means, but one I really love is that it is the light from the stars. More commonly it is considered to mean ‘the evening star’ or ‘venus’. However, it is a beautiful word (a popular name for Boys too in the Muslim world) and has several layers of meaning. What is it about the light of stars that draws us closer to home? Coming from the extraterrestrial, it seems to pierce through our bodies and journey deep to where our soul lies inside, to remind us…perhaps of where we are heading to…

 

Al- Tariq

 

My home calls me
In whispered breath that escapes
When a blade of grass is bent
By some unknowing child’s caressing hand
Eager to pick a dandelion flower
And blow those petals away
On the arms of a waiting wind

My home calls me
In tears that lace my lower eyelid
Not strong enough to flow and wet
A cheek bathed in soft moonlight
As I stare at distant planets
Visible as drops of piercing light
Retina welcomes this transcendent visitor

My home calls me
In that knowing gleam in the eye
Of the lone stork that came to sit
On the very tip of the weeping willow
By the shores of a small hidden pond
In a park by the ocean where
I went to walk to soothe my aching heart

My home calls me
And O my Lord, you are my only witness
How gloriously rich to have
My home’s master
be my constant Guide and closest Confidant
It eases this parting and I am joyful
Knowing I would not be here except You willed it so

Ah, but my home calls me
And its call cannot be drowned out but
By the mirthful chatter of tedious yet necessary
fleeting pleasure. So happy then are days
Balanced between summer joys and winter suns
Happy to live and living not forget
That happier home to which I am every day
Drawing closer.

 

***

Copyright Joymanifest 2013

 

Love in Islam

For all those who think or say that there is no understanding of love in Islam’s concept of the Godhead, please do listen to this. It is only 15 mins and is excerpted from one of our foremost scholars today. We have a deep deep and wide understanding of love in our tradition. Unfortunately many of us, even among the Muslims, are divorced from this reality in the modern world. One of the greatest tragedies to befall the Muslim nation is our loss of our knowledge sources which happened to a large extent during the colonial period. So the past 200 years or so has seen the Muslim nation loose much of its base. I think it is almost akin to the other great tragedy that befell the Muslim nation which is when the Mongol hoards sacked Baghdad (Genghis Khan’s grandson lead that campaign). Thankfully knowledge is coming back into Muslims from what has been preserved now, as it did in our history some decades after the sacking of Baghdad. Ironically the descendants of the invaders themselves became Muslim and contributed much to the Muslim world. But let me not go off on a tangent. For now, by God’s grace, nNew scholars are emerging, teaching and spreading knowledge and books are being unearthed and translated. God will preserve His teaching. And this is true for all true traditions that lead to the worship of the Source. May we all be reunited with the One we love. And God’s peace and blessings be upon His messenger Muhammed

Peace be with you all, Assalamu alaikum