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“Rasulullah is an Exemplar for You”

27 February 2016

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

لَّقَدْ كَانَ لَكُمْ فِي رَسُولِ اللَّهِ أُسْوَةٌ حَسَنَةٌ لِّمَن كَانَ يَرْجُو اللَّهَ وَالْيَوْمَ الْآخِرَ وَذَكَرَ اللَّهَ كَثِيرًا

'Rasulullah SA is an exemplar for those who desire/want/aspire to Allah Ta’ala and Aakherat'

(Surat al-Ahzab: 21)

This article was written by Ra'sul Hududil Mayameen Janab Syedi Aziz Bhaisaheb Qutbuddin in 2016.

The concept of an exemplar— a role model and guide that we should follow—is clearly expressed in this ayat in the Qur’an Majeed: “Rasulullah SA is an exemplar for those who desire/want/aspire to Allah Ta’ala and Aakherat(Surat al-Ahzab: 21). For the entire Muslim Ummah, to emulate and follow Rasulullah’s example and Sunnat is a cornerstone of the faith.

For Mumineen, this concept is strongly manifest in Syedna Qutbuddin Shaheed’s RA statement that he made when he was imprisoned and falsely accused of apostasy. Syedna Qutbuddin said, “we are the ones who follow the true Sunnat [of Rasulullah]” (ayn sunnat par hamay che).

For us however, Rasulullah’s example is not only a model framed in the distant past, which was a very different time and context. In every age, Rasulullah’s example is alive through a guide and exemplar – a guide who we can see and hear. One guide we trust who not only truly follows the example of Rasulullah, but personifies its relevance in today’s age.

Each Imam, and in his seclusion his Dai, fulfills the role of an exemplar (uswatun hasanah) for the Mumineen in his time. That is a condition of Allah Ta’ala’s Justice. If not, the many good people who came after Rasulullah’s time would be at a clear disadvantage for not having a living guide and exemplar.

Each Imam, and in his seclusion his Dai, is an exemplar in how to follow the tenets of the Shari’at that Rasulullah prescribed 1400 years ago. Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin RA often said in his waaz that the manner in which we pray namaaz today is precisely the manner in which Rasulullah SA prayed.

Each Imam, and in his seclusion his Dai, is an exemplar as to how to deal with the ever-changing circumstances and dynamics of life. Syedna Taher Saifuddin RA was the first Dai to fly in an aircraft and pray namaaz while in flight. Syedna Qutbuddin TUS clearly guided Mumineen regarding the calculation of zakaat in the present financial context. Our community’s attitudes and approach towards education – especially women’s education— trade, other religions, and many other things is guided by our Hudaat Kiraam. Our Du’aat through their bayaan and their example have guided Mumineen how to live cooperatively in the mixed societies that we now call home. They have taught us how to respect other beliefs and value systems while being conscious of our identity and firm in our beliefs and values.

Most importantly, each Imam and in his seclusion his Dai, is an exemplar of prioritizing Aakherat. It is narrated by Syedna Idris RA in ‘Uyun al-Akhbar that when Behlul came to Kufa, he saw a group of children playing. One child was not playing and instead he sat alone. Behlul came to the child and asked him why he was not playing with the other children. The child recited several munajaat in response to Behlul’s question. The child lamented the finiteness of this world and the burden of sins, and exhorted Behlul to worship. The conversation continued until Behlul was overwhelmed and fainted. When he awoke he did not find the child. When he enquired further, he was told that the child was Ali b. Husain b. Ali – Imam Ali Zainul-Aabedeen SA.

We are humble followers of our Imam and of his Dai. In our own humble capacity, we must concern ourselves with the preparation for the Hereafter and not be overwhelmed with the grind and materialism of this world. Of course, material needs and happiness in this world are necessary also. But what is important is that the temptations and necessities of this world do not become the end and purpose of our existence.

In an ayat following the ayat quoted above, the Qur’an Majeed says, “among the Believers are men who have been true to their covenant with Allah: of them some have completed their vow (to the extreme), and some (still) wait: but they have never changed (their determination) in the least.” This Quranic ayat applies foremost to the Du’aat Mutlaqeen, who are true to their covenant to Allah Ta’ala and the Imam. They do not change or alter the fundamentals of our religion. For this reason, they are our exemplars – by following their example we follow the example of Rasulullah SA.

May Allah Ta’ala grant us the tawfeeq and strength to follow the example of our Awliyaa’ Kiraam by following the example of our Daiz-zaman, our uswat hasanah. May Allah Ta’ala grant Syedna TUS longest life in full health to continue to lead us and guide us by words and example.

Rasulullah SA is an exemplar for those who desire/want/aspire to Allah Ta’ala and Aakherat

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