God will not change the condition of a people until they change

Author Unknown

13:10 It is all alike to Him whether any of you conceals his thought or brings it into the open, and whether he seeks to hide his evil deeds under the cover of night or walks boldly in the light of day,

13:11 thinking that he has hosts of helpers-both such as can be perceived by him and such as are hidden from him that could preserve him from whatever God may have willed. Verily, God does not change men’s condition unless they change their inner selves; and when God wills people to suffer evil in consequence of their own evil deeds, there is none who could avert it for they have none who could protect them from Him.

13:12 HE IT IS who displays before you the lightning, to give rise to both fear and hope,
and calls heavy clouds into being;

Above is the English translation of Surah(chapter) Ar-Ra’d(The Thunder) Ayah’s(verses) 10-13 from the Muhammad Asad translation.

My purpose for posting these scriptures is to give an in depth view into my perception as it relates to the plight of Muslims today in light of the current controversy that I spoke in length in my “Muslim Disappointment” blog 9/15/06. Now, my wife among others were a little “disturbed” about my expression:

“I cannot see why we are so upset with the Pope and are not upset with ourselves. In truth, I don’t blame the Pope. He should talk about us, somebody should, because we obviously don’t have the courage to talk about it. 1.5 billion weak individuals, we deserve what we get, ”

In my wife’s defense, after explaining my understanding of the Quranic text, she could see where I was going with this. What many don’t know, is that I try with the best of my reasoning and knowledge to express myself in the context of the Quran whenever I speak or write. I rarely if ever, express a view that is not congruent with the intention or understanding of the Quran. The above expression, once taken apart, can be easily understood once you see the ayat.

My fellow Muslims, it has increasingly become clear that this is a time for action. We love to blame others for our shortcomings, but rarely look in the mirror. I was disheartened and very upset after learning about the reactions to the Pontiff’s speech. We, and I say we, because we are one Ummah, looked like complete idiots. Here you have the Pope, commenting in so many words what can be translated to mean that Islam produces violence, and how do we respond? Calling for the death of the Pope, riots, and the death of a Nun and God only knows what else wasn’t reported.

This is what I meant when I questioned our logic into getting upset in the first place. Benjamin Franklin once said “do not throw stones at your neighbor, especially if your house is made of glass”. Muslims, what kind of house are we keeping today? Is it clean? Is it made of brick? In Indonesia for instance, three Christians face execution, now one can debate why that is, but you and I both know that it might have more to do with the fact that they are Christians and less to do with the crime.

This mess, this garbage, that we have allowed to fester in our house is what is causing us to receive the eviction notice. Its the reason the lights are being cut off and the pests are roaming rampant.

Lets examine just the Ayats I posted:

13:10 It is all alike to Him whether any of you conceals his thought or brings it into the open, and whether he seeks to hide his evil deeds under the cover of night or walks boldly in the light of day,

We would be foolish and outright spreading falsehood if we didn’t acknowledge the evil among us. Do you think that just because we pretend or don’t acknowledge its presence that others don’t see it especially God? Muslims are commanded to destroy evil and falsehood and replace it with which is better. How many of us in the sight of Allah(swt) can say that we are guilty of doing this righteous deed?

13:11 thinking that he has hosts of helpers-both such as can be perceived by him and such as are hidden from him that could preserve him from whatever God may have willed. Verily, God does not change men’s condition unless they change their inner selves; and when God wills people to suffer evil in consequence of their own evil deeds, there is none who could avert it for they have none who could protect them from Him.

Look at our condition. Granted in some nations and countries around the world we live pretty well and comfortable. However, did not the Prophet(saw) say that a Muslim wants for his brother what he has for himself? We are ONE Ummah, with ONE faith, and submit to ONE Lord of ALL the Worlds. How can we live in peace while our brothers die daily in the streets? How can we allow the persecution of women and children. Much of the suffering comes from who? Not America, not the West, but ourselves.

I’m not denying the involvement of others nor the history of the world, but one has to start at home first. If we were a strong Ummah that reflected the best of mankind these things would not be able to exist! I can’t say it enough, look at Darfur!!!! Muslims killing Muslims brothers and sisters!!!! And this is not just in the Sudan, but all across Africa, the Middle East, and Asia. We have vast resources yet where does all this oil money go?

Here we are approaching Ramadan. How can we fast one day, without considering the children who don’t even have food at all? We are supposed to be a shining example, but we don’t exemplify the religion that was revealed that says women and men are equal. We don’t exemplify the religion that revealed that the taking of one life is like the killing of all mankind.

Why, Why, Why? Why do we allow this? This is a call to action.

Everyday we allow our brethren to protest against the West or some insult without protesting our own governments, everyday a Muslim woman is beaten, raped, or killed, everyday a child starves and dies, everyday a Muslim commits suicide in bombings, everyday a Muslim commits an act of terror, everyday we allow these things we are hastening our reward with Allah(swt).

Until we network and build the alliances needed to repair our house, until we make the effort to protect the rights of all men and women regardless of their ethnicity, religion, or nationality, until we truly live and represent this deen night and day, then and only then will Allah(swt) help us.

All we have to do is take one step. Every journey begins with the mind to go forward, then the head calls the body into motion, and one step becomes two, and an inch becomes a mile, and before you know it, Peace will cross the globe and the children of Abraham(saw) will establish that which was revealed to them, and we don’t have to agree, but we can live in respect and peace.

13:12 HE IT IS who displays before you the lightning, to give rise to both fear and hope,and calls heavy clouds into being;

Which of the favors of God will we continue to deny? Let us take this current turmoil, this current controversy, this current lightning and reflect on the Majesty of our Lord. Let us submit and call to remembrance our many blessings. Let us not only use these events as a warning to be feared, but let us also use it as a sign to give us hope. Lightening comes before the Thunder, and let us pray that we see this Light in this Darkness and make the righteous decisions that will allow us to advert the Thunder and the Storm. Ameen.

Brothers and sisters, the choice is ours. We can choose to be silent or we can choose to be heard. Whatever, our choice, know that we are rewarded not on just what we thought, but also what we actually did.

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