In the last post, I shared some verses from the Quran which talked about how to gain Allah’s mercy. But right in the next lesson, Shaykh himself told about the way of attracting His Mercy…
والله سبحانه هو الرحمن الرحيم، ورحمته لنا تزيد بمقدار رحمتنا لخلقه، وإنما يرحم الله من عباده الرحماء
قال النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم : «لا يَـرْحَـمُ اللهُ مَنْ لا يَـرْحَـمُ النَّاسَ » متفق عليه
[Roughly translated:] And Allah, Glorified is He, He is the Entirely Merciful, the Especially Merciful. And His Mercy for us increases in proportion to our mercy for His creation, and indeed Allah shows mercy on his merciful slaves.
Prophet Muhammad sallallaahu ‘alaihi wassalam said, “Allah will not be merciful to those who are not merciful to the people”. (Agreed Upon)
What a beautiful way of obtaining His mercy. And unfortunately, this is what today we Muslims find most difficult. We’d pray and fast and talk good stuff but we’re not merciful to others. Look at our attitudes. Our communication with each other. Our sincerity. How many of us are kind to strangers, in general? People that we meet on the road, in the market, in a waiting room of the hospital, on the bus stop, on the airport? Do we smile at them, exchange good words, help them?
What about our family, friends and acquaintances? Where is the compassion and the empathy? When friends talk, they make fun of each other and taunt, thinking they’re being cool. We converse as if trying to tell the other person that we’re superior to them. Where is the love, respect and mercy between spouses today? Are they really the coolness of each others eyes as they’re supposed to be? Do parents and children have that merciful relationship in which they understand and respect each other? Or are parents forever scolding their children and their children disobeying and disrespecting them? Do siblings have that sharing and caring attitude that they should have being a family unit? What is our level of mercy with our uncles and aunts and grandparents? Do we ask after them regularly? Exchange gifts? Visit them? What about our neighbors? Today we don’t even know our neighbors, let alone visiting them and taking care of their needs.
And then, a merciful slave is merciful to his environment as well. He is merciful to the animals and the plants. He even walks kindly on the earth. He doesn’t spread litter or make his vicinity unclean.
The image of a merciful slave brings to my mind the following hadith:
Abdullah ibn Masud narrated: Allah’s Messenger (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wassalam) said, “Shall I not inform you of who is forbidden upon the (Hell) fire or whom the fire is forbidden upon? A man who is always accessible, gentle and easy going.” [At-Tirmidhi]
Isn’t this simply awesome?
Look at the Christian missionaries. I have had personal interaction with them and have found them to be the most well-mannered people. I don’t exaggerate. They talk to everyone and give them attention as if the other person means the most to them, and they do it genuinely, not in an artificial manner. Isn’t this what we’ve heard about our Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wassalam?
Whenever there’s a disaster in any part of the world, who are the first people to reach there? Christian missionaries. Where is that compassion in us Muslims? Why aren’t people attracted to follow Islam by our conducts and characters? Why is the image of a ‘maulvi’ the most scariest today? Why do people run away from them? (Okay, I know media portrays it badly but we know the sole blame does not lie on media). Or sometimes we get so much into the fiqh of things that we forget the basics i.e. giving glad tidings and just being nice.
Sometimes (okay, most of the times, I admit), being good to others seems very difficult. Specially, if they’ve hurt us, we’d rather not speak kindly to them anymore or not help them. For that, the only thing that helps is remembering that you’re not doing it for them, but for Allah. Your reward lies with Him alone and if you’re merciful to His slaves, He’ll be merciful to you.
May Allah give us the taufeeq to actually be good to everyone for His sake alone and may we get His rahmah through it. Ameen.