Thursday, May 1, 2014

Islam, Iman and Ihsan

Presented by: Sister May

Created for a noble purpose and that is to worship Allah 51:56
I have not created man and jinn except to worship me.

There are 4 aspect of why we worship Allah
1.       Why do we worship Allah–
2.       How do we worship him –
3.       What do we do -
4.       Primary levels of worship –
1 -  Why – most people would say because God has bestowed favors on me. This is not the primary reason. Yes we should thank him as this is a way of worship but the primary reason we worship him is because of who Allah is and not who we are. Because he alone deserves to be worshiped. He is perfect and we are not. We acknowledge his perfection by worshiping him. So when asked why do we worship Allah, the correct answer is we worship him because he is worthy of that worship. He is worthy before this creation and after all is destroyed. Sub7anahu wata3ala. Even our prophet peace be upon him would say in his sujud in the middle of the night, “oh Allah how exalted are you I can never do justice in praising you.” Our best example!

The angels were created thousands of years ago, they have no free will and worship constantly day and night without food or drink or rest. In the hereafter the angels will say “oh Allah we have not worshiped you the way you deserve to be worshiped.” The more you learn about Allah swt through his beautiful names it helps us worship him better because we learn more about who he is. We want janah and protection from hellfire. Sure those can be reasons but not the primary reason, Allah swt says that we wouldn’t be able to count the blessings anyway. Even if he didn’t create us he will still be worthy of worship.
He is created for who he is and that’s the primary reason everything else is secondary.

2 - How – he is worshiped by beliefs , statements and actions. Once the Prophet asked the sa7abeh to ask questions about their religion. They were shy to ask, so Allah swt sent Jibreel in a human form. He asked:    What is Iman- 6 pillars of faith - What is Islam-5 pillars  One God, Praying, Fasting, Hajj and Zakat; what is I7san- worship Allah as though you see him even if you don’t see him he sees you.
These are the fundamental basics of our religion.
3.   What do we do – how do we perfect the prayer and be better Muslims. There are many ways but the best way to increase our consciousness of Allah SWT is by knowledge. This is one way - Seeking knowledge. For example the Prophet said that one person would get up for prayer and only get one tenth of the reward another would get half another would get full another wouldn’t get anything , all are doing the same actions. It has much to do with the inner spirituality, the motivation.

Two aspects of knowledge

I.                    Theory of practice. Learn about how do we pray, read for yourself what the prophet used to do. The more you read the more you will understand why. This will make you more aware, more humble. Gives you a greater connection. He said - Pray as you seen me pray, pray as if it was your last prayer.  -> meaningful prayer by AbdulNasir Janga

II.                  Science – blessing – what is the blessing of fasting, blessing of wuduu. If you study the blessings of wuduu, you won't do wuduu the same way. You won't wake up with your eyes closed, splash some water and quickly pray so that you don’t wake up. When you learn that every drop removes sins, makes you grateful that you are doing wuduu. In the hereafter everyone will be thirsty and the Prophet will be the only one who can invite you to drink and he will recognize the believers from the brightness of their faces because of Wuduu. These are the blessings of the act. It gives us a consciousness of our actions. Best action is to perform wuduu on a cold morning in the open. If you can perfect wuduu under that circumstances that is most beloved to Allah swt.
4. Primary levels of worship – Islam Iman i7san

Muslim, Mu2min, Mu7sin

Muslim- does the bare minimum – just does the fard prayers, only Ramadan, only 2.5% and zakat alfitir, only hajj.

Mu2min-does the bare minimum plus the sunnan, fasts 3 days a month, Mondays Thursdays,  gives extra charity. Mu2min increases his quantity. More charity more prayers and so on.

What makes someone become a mu7sin? Level of Iman to I7san? It’s Not quantity but quality. Mus7sin worships Allah as if he sees him even though he can't see him he knows Allah swt is watching so he is worshiping Allah 24/hours a day. Is that the Level of the angel? Do we need to hide in the mountains and worship all day and night to attain this level and stay away from all the pleasures of this world and eat harsh food? Sub7an Allah did the Prophet or the sahabeh live like this? Of course not! They worshiped Allah and lived their lives. They lived like human beings not like angels.

How do we reach that level if we are human and live like humans? This is what separate the mu2min from the mu7sin. The Mu2min prays fasts goes to halaqas. Has a dichotomy of the world he divides the worldly life from his religious life.  The mu7sin transcends this division. The mu7sin everything becomes religious. This is the beauty of Islam. The mu7sin has a consciousness of Allah he is always thinking of Allah and knows and understands that Allah swt is watching. The Mu7sin thanks Allah swt for his health and knowledge and works to take care of his family for the sake of Allah. When he goes shopping he doesn’t complain he does it with love and care and thanks Allah swt for providing. Sub7an Allah the mu7sin would get rewarded just because he has Allah swt in mind. Smile in peoples faces for Allah swt keeping him in mind.

Muath iben Jabr - Sa7abeh once visited his friends and his friends asked how do you pray your tahajud (morning prayer) .. he said he sleeps, prays and when he sleeps he expects to be rewarded for his sleep just as much as his tahajud.

Again its not quantity it's quality that bridges us from iman to i7san.

Reach iman first then focus on I7san.

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