By Dr Wasim Ahmad
Many a times we hear that “all our efforts of this world must be aimed at pleasing our Creator so that our Hereafter will be good for us by the Mercy of our Creator”. There is no denying this fact and every Believer subscribes to and works for this. However, the occasions at which the above statement is repeated requires reconsideration. The beauty of the above statement is that it provides a nice escape route and brings the entire discussion to an abrupt end. There is no need to take it further. There is no need to relate the meaning of this one sentence with all the aspects of our practical life. This one sentence smartly leaves the job half-way. We have repeated it numberless times – without giving a thought to what it implies and how could it be translated into action.
“Let us not redefine our goal, priorities and the method to achieve them” should read “Let us not relate the ideals of our Faith with the various aspects of our life with a view to put them in the forefront. Let us not figure out how we could live up to those ideals. Let us just repeat them. This is exactly what many among us are so devotedly doing, you know. Just follow in their noble footsteps. Otherwise you might deviate from the Right Path. Don’t you know that the Satan is our biggest enemy, my dear?”
With all sincerity we advise ourselves to “Learn the fundamentals of Eiman first. Without knowing well what is Tauheed we may end up in wasting our entire life.” However, despite being a very good piece of advice this sentence, too, brings the discussion to a premature and sudden conclusion. Normally, we do not encounter any further questions after it. Nobody asks why and how of it? We repeat it because we have heard many more people repeating exactly the same sentence countless times. This sentence, too, indicates our love for short-cuts. It indicates that we want to avoid some uncomfortable stations along the way.
Tauheed is now not a living reality but an abstract idea. Thanks to the lifeless exposition of it. Our atomistic thinking is, in fact, the exact opposite of the idea of Tauheed – which literally means making everything one (waahid) i.e. coherent. Our discussion about and reference to Tauheed is as much detached from our life as possible because this is precisely what it deserves! Tauheed was supposed to make everything one and we have divided Tauheed itself in many categories. It indicates that we have lost the sense of priorities and we have mixed up between issues and non-issues.
“Without giving importance to the basic knowledge of Eiman and Islam if we achieve any worldly things, it would not lead us to a safe Hereafter. A very fearful condition indeed. Let us concentrate on this first as on that day none could be helpful to us except our good deeds which we did with the correct knowledge” is again a beautiful advice. How we relate it with our life is yet another matter. What are “good deeds” requires no explanation. We merely need to utter it – numberless times. We were discussing everything happily without remembering this piece of advice. But as soon as we noticed that there is an effort to address the same without uttering it, we suddenly woke up, realized that Islam is in danger and did the noble job of instantly uttering this sentence so that everything is accomplished except the spirit of this one sentence.
After we have asserted that “knowledge and the fear of our Creator Almighty Allah is the foundation for our success in this World and After .......... It is only the people of knowledge who fear Allah as He should be feared” there is no need to define what “success” is and how could the “knowledge and fear of our Creator” be the foundation of our success in both the worlds – in measurable and understandable terms. I have never seen anyone asking “How?” after the above pronouncement. A sentence like this switches everyone immediately off or to silent mode. And we go back home enlightened (read conditioned). Why not? After all dunyaa is detached from deen! We are experts in dividing – rather than uniting – and we still love Tauheed.
“Pleasing our Creator” is not possible in a vacuum. It has to be in this world and on the planet earth. It is not an excuse to escape our responsibilities in life. It is a challenge of engaging with the life. “Pleasing our Creator” is not possible by merely repeating this sentence just as no betterment is expected by only reading out the names of the medicines wisely prescribed by a physician. “Pleasing our Creator” is not possible by suspending the most beautiful gift of capacities which the Creator has endowed the human beings with.
“Pleasing our Creator” is not possible without performing the numberless jobs assigned to the Believers which they themselves have to figure out in every age and earn qualifications to perform them, too. “Pleasing our Creator” is not about watching passively a drama unfolding in front of us. It is about being the actors in the play. Finally, “pleasing our Creator” means our deep realization that the longest is the shortest.