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130) Amirul Mumineen’s Approach to this World

6 August 2016

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

وعمارة الدنيا كذا الاخرى معا *

دين الهدى لهما معا قم فاعمر

 (Syedna Taher Saifuddin RA)

Strive for success in this world and the hereafter
That is the truly guided path

In many of his sayings, Amirul Mumineen SA emphasizes the Hereafter by highlighting the transience and futility of this world. For example, in one instance he likens this world to a snake that is smooth to touch but whose poison is fatal. In the context of the strong attraction humans instinctively have to the instant gratification of this world, such strong imagery is necessary.

However, overall our Mawali Tahereen’s approach to this world is a positive one. In a world seemingly full of despair and suffering our Hudaat Kiraam’s approach focuses on its potential for good, truth, profit and prayer. Not only does this approach help us live as good human beings in this world, but it helps us make this world a bridge to the heavens, provided we prepare for the Hereafter.

As Shzd Tahera Baisaheba explains in her article presented in Sijill 130, Amirul Mumineen focuses on the importance of the approach we take to this world. In other words, this world is what we make of it:

[Maulana Ali] reminded his companions that the world is neither good nor bad in and of itself, but that both the good and bad of this world are with reference to its people. We should not reproach the world for our own defects. Yes, its characteristics are base, but it does not hide them from us. Rather, it warns us time and again, showing us plainly by the deaths of our fathers and mothers that our fate will be exactly the same. The world is a bridge to paradise for the person who looks at it with the eye of reflection. It is here that one has the opportunity to prepare for the hereafter, to pray and perform good deeds, deeds that serve as a passport to heaven. But for the person who neglects to prepare for the hereafter, the world is a bridge to hellfire. In both cases, the world is not responsible for the fate of its inhabitants. It is they who choose their path. They make of the world what they will. They use it or abuse it as they will.  (Shzd Tahera Baisaheba’s full article is published here.)

Syedna Taher Saifuddin RA presented Amirul Mumineen’s approach to dunya in his qasida “al-aqlu fil-insaani-a’lal jawhari”:

Amirul Muminin, Maulana Ali, famously known as Haydar,

Said the following words about this world:

It is the home of truth for those who are truthful

The home of wellbeing for those who comprehend

A masjid for Allah’s loved ones, those who practice piety

Prostrate in sajda, and continually praise God

Place of prayer for the angels

Noble, pure, dazzling in their luminous station

Place where revelation descends

From the lord of the high heavens, lord of land and sea

Place where God’s saints, awliya, transact

Earning His blessings

O human: apply yourself with passion

Work hard to profit in both abodes

Don the garment of God’s religion

 Wear the robe of piety, taqwa

Religion in the world is like the soul in the body

Know this well, and pay heed

This world is your home, your residence

Live honorably, its honor derives from you

Take service from the world, do not become its servant

And you shall live with dignity and respect

Strive for success in this world and the hereafter

That is the truly guided path

Recently, Syedna Fakhruddin TUS expanded on this approach to Dunya in his waaz on the 19th of Shehrullah. Syedna explains that Maulana Ali encouraged Mumineen to fully take advantage of all worldly and spiritual opportunities.  However, it should never that deen is forgotten - there must be balance in life. The 5 minute video clip was recently published on FatemiDawat.com. 

Syedna Fakhruddin himself is also an example of this approach. Syedna’s dedication to Dawat ‘ilm and khidmat throughout his life was such that Syedna Qutbuddin RA anointed him as his successor to the exalted rutba of Dai al-Mutlaq.  At the same time, Syedna excelled in secular education and business. He topped the cohort of Bombay University in his Arabic literature B.A. and achieved an M.A. from the University of London. As did Syedna Ismail Badruddin RA, Syedna Fakhruddin established and managed successful and profitable businesses.

Our Hudaat Kiraam and our Daiz-zamaan practice what they preach and they lead by example, not only with their words. May Allah Ta’ala grant us the strength to live by this approach and build this world and the Hereafter.