A muslim’s take on the disaster in Japan

I wanted to say a few things, not to air my views but because it needs to be said. And I say it first to myself.

Recently I’ve read an article saying things to the nature that…the people of Japan deserved what happened to them, that it is a godless country, etc and etc. These things made me angry. For who is anyone to say anything of the sort. What we have witnessed has raised in every one of us who saw it a great awe. Some may not know at what they feel awe, but they feel it. We who believe in a God, especially those of us calling ourselves Muslims, have this awe of God. But then how is it that we still dare to point fingers at others. Not just any others, but at others who are suffering. Do we not fear Allah to do such a thing? Auzubilllah, Allah protect me from this type of attitude and protect us all from it. We should be among the first to rush to help… sitting in a mosque smirking should not even be a thought in our psyche.

So I dismissed that article, scarcely able to read it to the end. MashaAllah as always Allah sheds light in to a heart with a door open [Oh Allah help me keep that door open all the time] for this beautiful post by Dr. Hasaballah beautifully puts everything in perspective and eloquent as always, he calls us to be better Muslims. Quoting this all important hadith. Never lets forget it, for it is a cornerstone of our imaan (faith).
“None of you truly believes until he loves for his brother what he loves for himself.”

No sane person can love for himself the suffering, misery, fear and anxiety the people of Japan are going through now. So let us fear to sit by and watch it for others without helping.

On that note, here is a beautiful talk by Sh. Hamza, delivered at a conference in 2009. Please do listen to it. As always my beloved Sh. calls us to the better way. The way of our master Muhammed, who was afraid to have excess food in his house in case there was someone in the city who needed it more.

Allah help us all be better.

I am inserting the talks, in parts below. And it must also be known by the world that there are many many wonderful Muslims out there, joined with our non-Muslims brothers and sisters, doing their darndest utmost to provide relief and help whenever and wherever they can, regardless of religion, race, ethincity and even affluence. For when a person is in need, it is just a person in need. That is all.

Some of these organizations you can donate to are
MuslimsHands, Islamic Relief , Islamicity, mercyMalaysia.

Mashaallah I can personally vouch for Islamic relief, Muslim Hands (to the best of my memory) and Mercy Malaysia, who stayed long after all the big INGOs had gone and provided far more bang for the buck than the big INGOs could (as for example they didn’t need high tech offices, used tractors and wheelbarrows as opposed to 4wheel drive jeeps) in tsunami relief operations in Sri Lanka.

Here is the talk by Sh. Hamza, on the urgency of helping and telling us we have the potential to help.

Peace be with all and may God be merciful upon us.

Inspiration I sought..an old poem

Peace to all. I wanted to share this very old poem, written over a decade ago when fresh out of high school I spent a vacation with my Uncle, a physician in a rural hospital. I was there to observe/help/vacation and basically figure out if I wanted to go in to Med School or not. Here was one outcome of that time… while the feeling of guilt and helplessness at not being able to do more for Japan exists, perhaps reading this will help inshaAllah. Allah help us all. Help us to know how to help each other and to put that knowledge in to practice.

Inspiration I sought

Inspiration I sought
in a hospital ward
They called me in
to watch the stitching
held away the flapping skin
to show me the skull
I marveled
And a tear squeezed from the patient eye
Did it hurt you when they lifted for me to see?

You got beaten by your husband
so here’s a wound
For me to practice on
just a routine job
We get many a day
they say laughingly
Villagers and toddy are quite inseparable!

I wanted to be of service
that’s all that led me here
And my ego fulfilled
being a doctor?

Would you have preferred
a policeman’s batten or a lawyer’s brief
rendered free.
Though many a gift somehow you’ll bake
and bring me,
once the wounds are old
And maybe more woulds to sew.

I see it now.
Your hand is empty
May I hold it?

***

Copyright- 2011 JoyManifest’s Blog. FR Zahir.

Here is a gentle story on the life of this world

Assalamu alaikum, peace and the blessing of God upon all!

It is hard to stop thinking of Japan. My thoughts and prayers for all the beautiful brave kind people there. May Allah make it easy for them. Knowing that prayer is the greatest help one can give helps a lot, for otherwise how helpless we would be to help. These are the times I wish I had gone in to Med school after all. But wait, no, help is in holding the hand of the cashier stunned at the fallen goods and broken bottles when the ground stopped shaking. Help is smiling at one’s spouse when the anxiety of not knowing how we will get to where we must go makes one only want to snap. Help is in steadfastness and patience. Help is a cheery countenance and cracking a joke, giving a hug and gentleness in one’s touch. Help I hope, even if a little, is in me not wasting the precious time I have here to try and be a nicer person. More reliable, more trustworthy, more truthful and more cheerful. Indeed help comes from heaven simply at the moment somewhere in your heart you say ‘yes I’m going to help’ and that is all there is. And then somewhere, somehow joy explodes inside. Allah Kareem! 🙂

God is the protector of those who have faith. From the depths of darkness He will lead them forth in to light
(Quran 2:257)

Here is a favourite little hymn/song on those lines…easy to put in to a gentle tune, it always brings peace to my heart and reminds me of the rahma of Allah, and the rahma of our prophet (peace and blessing of Allah be upon him) how patient and gentle he was through numerous hardship

‘ I live for those who love me
for those who know me true
for heaven that watches above me
and calls my spirit too
For the cause that needs assistance
for the wrong that needs resistance
for the future in the distance
and the good that I can do’

MashaAllah I was sent this link today. It is a beautiful short video on one of the stories from the life of Isa (peace be upon him). A very telling tale… that reminds one of what is important in life. Great natural events such as what we have witnessed now, do that also. Back home in Sri Lanka seeing all it did and knowing how long it took to rebuild… Subhahanallah! A life lesson on what is important. Yet, how easy it is to forget. God protect us all.

‘O my Lord, do not leave me alone with myself even for an instant’

So then this temporary life, full of lesson in every second, in every heartbeat something to know and marvel at. As my dear sister, who is in Japan and shared these beautiful words just before the earthquake indeed, imaan is something that grows inside, flourishing it dispels all doubt and despair in its wake. Allah Kareem, may the growth of imaan be the only tsunami we ever face! And we trust in Allah’s infinite justice for those in hardship.

فَإِنَّ مَعَ الْعُسْرِ يُسْرًا ﴿٥﴾ إِنَّ مَعَ الْعُسْرِ يُسْرًا
For indeed with hardship will be ease. Indeed with hardship will be ease (Quran 94:5-6)