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parents - the good and the bad


3wliya_maryam

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Sometimes we forget to be grateful for many of the blessings God has decreed upon us that if we were to thank him for countless days and nights, it would never be sufficient. Some of us may not realise that despite living in a house where our parents have different mindsets that complicate many aspects in life, perhaps during their time they had it far more worse. We forget that they have gone through immense pressure trying to give us a life far more opportunistic than theirs, yet they fail to realise how a lot of their customs prevents us from seeking opportunities in the first place. Think about the conservative societies they used to live in the past century and how difficult it was to overcome. Perhaps our parents think that their way of upbringing will lure us away from the demonised world, to save our mental stability and hence they carry their past teachings and culture to the next generation. On the contrary, that belief has torn us apart.

Our parents have survived war, signed myriad of papers and fought with the Western laws to seek a better environment for themselves and future offspring. We know that our families cannot seem to fathom our changes as we develop. They believe we are steering out of the line of honour and family reputation that if a slight error was committed then it would be spread throughout the entire community. You end up hearing tales and calumnies from storytellers who often find it entertaining to dwell in the affairs of others. The values and customs I have been raised in believe that a family's dignity and privilege is held by the eldest daughter where her wrongdoings mean familial destruction. Whilst having a good reputation at some point is crucial to living a substantial life, parents forget that our unexpressed feelings matter more than pleasing an egoistic community. 

In Islam, one of the major sins is the displeasing of parents, where their anger is equatable to God's. Surely we must strive to respect them as they become elders, despite the levels of irritability we receive almost everyday. We are taught to maintain patience and that is further learnt more deeply during adolescence. Even so, a lot of the times one has knowledge of what is right yet still choose to divert into the path of wrong. An example is when our parents infuriate us, it results in retaliation rather than remaining quiet and calm. Understandably, nobody wants to hear someone create quite vague assumptions and further jump to the worst conclusions. That is one of the nuisances we normally find within parents.

From past personal experience, despite my OCD was likely of being genetic, I discovered that the strategies my parents used to make the entire family adhere to religion were often uncompromising. They believe using threats will make their children stand firm towards God and whilst I partially agree, the end result may be discrepancy. I've always loved being a Muslim. Observing full hijab from a very young age, praying at night outside the backyard beneath His illuminating creation whilst holding the sacred Qur'an in my hands. I thought I felt undeniable peace, but was it truly as peaceful as it sounded like?  I was on attack the minute I stood onto my prayer mat or opened a supplication prayer. Those rampaging thoughts destroyed my inner peace. It seemed like I was a saintly servant of God, but the reality was that I was hurting deep down without even figuring out the cause. After recovery, a part of me came to conclusion as to what had led to these doubts and whispers in the first place. It somewhat was in relation towards my parent's upbringing, where I had noticed the number of threatening remarks they used in relation to God made me believe that I was obliged to add in the extra effort and consistency towards my prayers and other obligations. However, a number of times they had caught me in such a state and tried to give me solid advice that I am already pious enough in the eyes of God. And yet I always felt like I did a mistake in my ablution that led to repetitive cleansing.  

Then again, we are far more mature than to be constantly blaming parents for our actions. I criticise myself for being too naive and turning small situations into extreme ones. The truth is nobody else is at fault but ourselves because we have full control over our own actions. We are willing to blame others for our mistakes in order to escape guilt or responsibility. Parents may have played some role in the way we have turned out to be, yet we know ourselves way too well as adults that most of it is our own fault, Maybe we did not realise that controlling our thoughts and actions could have been taken into our own hands if only we did not let all that negativity consume us.

 

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  • Advanced Member

Islam isn't based on fear. Some Muslims have focused on propagating fear as it's the easiest way to 'control' their kids and keep them inline. 

 الإمام علي (عليه السلام): إن قوما عبدوا الله رغبة فتلك عبادة التجار، وإن قوما عبدوا الله رهبة فتلك عبادة العبيد، وإن قوما عبدوا الله شكرا فتلك عبادة الأحرار 

نهج البلاغة ٢٣٧

Its narrated that Imam Ali (عليه السلام) had broken down the worshipers into three types:

The people who worshiped God out of desire, which is the worship of merchants.

The people who worshiped God out of fear, which is the worship of slaves.

The people who worshiped God out of gratitude, which is the worship of the free. 

Nahj Al Balagha /237

There's much more to worship than simply fear of hell.

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On 12/29/2019 at 2:18 AM, Northwest said:

Islam is, at root, based on fear. Fear and obedience precedes faith. Yet constant guilt over one’s sins can be paralysing as well, especially given the stress and duties of daily life.

I just re read what u said. Whilst I partially agree that fear at times can be important for strong faith, but Islam at its root is based on fear? Why would Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) the most Merciful choose to create a fearful religion? Yes we should be fearful, especially when we do some major sins reminding us that Allah is watching, but too much fear is also unhealthy. If you are a faithful and practicing Muslim, then why should they be so fearful?

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2 minutes ago, 3wliya_maryam said:

I just re read what u said. Whilst I partially agree that fear at times can be important for strong faith, but Islam at its root is based on fear? Why would Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) the most Merciful choose to create a fearful religion? Yes we should be fearful, especially when we do some major sins reminding us that Allah is watching, but too much fear is also unhealthy. If you are a faithful and practicing Muslim, then why should they be so fearful?

...

Quote

Fear of God stands for the mental pains arisen from the anticipation of God’s punishment for the commitment of acts of disobedience to Him. It enjoins holding on straightforwardness and forbids vices and sins. … The previous texts have depicted the importance of fear and its contribution in rectifying man and qualifying him to have the honor of God’s contentment. … Excess fear impoverishes the personality and deprives of hope. Moreover, it causes despair, which, in turn, brings about perpetual deviation. Shortage of fear, also, causes negligence, shortcoming, and rebellion against acts of obedience to God. By the balance of fear and hope, one’s self nourishes, conscience towers up, and the spiritual energies go forward. … Accordingly, fear occupies the first place among the noble traits. It has played a big role in the fields of belief since it is the main reason encouraging acts of obedience to God. Feelings of fear enhance the souls and take them to a lofty angelic position that imparts to the ideality of the angels.

 

Quote

 

'He peace be upon him said: "The believer is between two states of fear: the sin which has passed; he does not know what Allah has done for it, and the age which has lasted; he does not know what he will commit of the sins during it, then he does not awake but afraid, and nothing reforms him except fear" al-Kafi 2/1/12

It was said to him:"People commit sins and say that they hope(Allah) and they will continue that till death comes to them." He, peace be upon him said: "They hesitate in hopes. They tell lies. They are not hopeful. Whoever hopes for a thing looks for it; whoever is afraid of a thing escapes from it" Al Kafi 2/68/5

If he knows that it is haram, and he knows that the consequences of haram are to risk earning the anger and displeasure of Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى), wouldn't he try to avoid earning the anger and displeasure of Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى)?

 

 

 

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  • Advanced Member

Respectfully, I have one question. Islam forbids even the mildest criticism of or ingratitude toward one’s parents, even if the parents, as a result of their own background(s), may occasionally—in some cases more often—act in a manner that is either a) contrary to Islam or b) causes distress or c) both, whether due to misunderstanding or other factors. Islam also has a lot of rules about which sins are greater or lesser and the circumstances that mitigate or modulate them. Many other Islamic rules and practices are difficult to remember. or, in some cases, to carry out. For example, repeating some prayers for a certain number of times may prove difficult, if one cannot repeat the phrase and at the same time count the number of times it is repeated, much less pay attention to details such as tone, pronunciation, etc. These kinds of things may tend to drive a prospective revert away from the faith, especially if the person has complications such as autism, OCD, etc., along with a number of negative experiences in life. Dealing with these issues, daily responsibilities, and the practice of Islam can be extraordinarily difficult. It is obviously easier, however, for someone who does not have psychological complications or other dysfunctions.

Edited by Northwest
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11 minutes ago, Northwest said:

Respectfully, I have one question.

Wheres the question?

 

11 minutes ago, Northwest said:

Islam forbids even the mildest criticism of or ingratitude toward one’s parents, even if the parents, as a result of their own background(s), may occasionally—in some cases more often—act in a manner that is either a) contrary to Islam or b) causes distress or c) both, whether due to misunderstanding or other factors

If the parents do act contrary to Islam, it is permissible to speak up against them. Even if they cause distress, speaking up against them is different than disrespecting them, and we know how a lot of parents intertwine culture and religion. Whilst I agree that it is hard to not retaliate and speak in contempt, were not perfect human beings. But we strive to try our best, and Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) is the Most Forgiving.

18 minutes ago, Northwest said:

Islam also has a lot of rules about which sins are greater or lesser and the circumstances that mitigate or modulate them. Many other Islamic rules and practices are difficult to remember. or, in some cases, to carry out. For example, repeating some prayers for a certain number of times may prove difficult, if one cannot repeat the phrase and at the same time count the number of times it is repeated, much less pay attention to details such as tone, pronunciation,

I get where you're coming from, but this is not a good example in relation to what you just stated. Islam really is a simple religion, there are just people who choose to complicate it in many ways. Prayer is one of the simplest rules in Islam, Allah made it easy for us because we would have been praying 50 times a day. Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) asked Him to decrease the number of prayers for the Muslims' ease. You can focus on the words and the number of prayers at the same time, I don't see the difficulty. If we choose to believe that something is difficult, then it will be regardless. From experience I realised that the more calm I am in prayer, the more focused I am.

29 minutes ago, Northwest said:

These kinds of things may tend to drive a prospective revert away from the faith, especially if the person has complications such as autism, OCD, etc., along with a number of negative experiences in life. Dealing with these issues, daily responsibilities, and the practice of Islam can be extraordinarily difficult. It is obviously easier, however, for someone who does not have psychological complications or other dysfunction

Having issues or daily responsibilities whilst practising Islam is not entirely difficult if you're a strong believer. Again, I completely understand where you're coming from and how it leads to low level of faith, but since you mentioned complications beside OCD, if one was to experience such dysfunctions, do you think that the Almighty would be hard on them in the first place?

Having OCD is not only genetic or stems from religion. Religious OCD is often known to come from environmental factors, as I previously mentioned, such as parents upbringing or society pressure. There is no clear evidence that OCD is a result of religion, chemical imbalances also play a role

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  • Advanced Member
18 hours ago, 3wliya_maryam said:

Having OCD is not only genetic or stems from religion. Religious OCD is often known to come from environmental factors, as I previously mentioned, such as parents upbringing or society pressure. There is no clear evidence that OCD is a result of religion, chemical imbalances also play a role

If I may add, we have narrations talking about the Shayateen (iblees's helpers) who's specific job is for instance to instill Wuswas (doubts) such as during Wudhu or praying etc In essence, these Shayateen try to exacerbate OCD symptoms. 

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  • Advanced Member

I have a random question about fitra. How much of our morality is innate? In other words, when we are born, according to Islam, does our divine (as opposed to animal) nature intuitively know what to do in every situation? If that is the case, then why are parents needed to teach the children?

Edited by Northwest
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  • Basic Members
On 2/2/2020 at 11:08 AM, Northwest said:

I have a random question about fitra. How much of our morality is innate? In other words, when we are born, according to Islam, does our divine (as opposed to animal) nature intuitively know what to do in every situation? If that is the case, then why are parents needed to teach the children?

I'm not sure what the Islamic view is here.. however, I don't think our fitra intuitively knows what to do in every situation. You find Shia teenagers who are still dealing with the harms of being neglected and abused in their childhoods, and our childhood does shape how we behave in our adult years. 

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  • Veteran Member

All religions are based on fear for the sake of adherence. The real question is always which are God's laws, and which are man made God laws?  

Forcing children can always go two ways. The preacher's kid was always the worst behaved. It's not to say they won't become pious later but the pressure to tow the line is often more than a kid can take. I spent all my young years believing I was going to hell because nothing I could do was ever good enough. I couldn't talk about it or it was more condemnation. To be fair, my Father practiced what he preached but that didn't help me. 

With my children I adhered to a promise from Proverbs 22:6, Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. 

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      I had the privilege and honor of going to Umrah a few weeks ago. Having completed my hajj in 2010, it was time to pay Hijaz another visit to pay my respects to the Prophet (saw) and his progeny in Madinah and visit the House of Allah in Makkah.
      Hopefully the pointers below will help anyone planning on going for Umrah.
      First, if you haven't been to Saudi before, it is best to go with a registered group. It will make things easier for you because other than following instructions, there shouldn't be much to worry about..Also, if you don't speak arabic or urdu/hindi/bengali, then it would be better to go with a registered group because language can be an issue in some places.
       Anyway, I decided to go with my family instead of a group. The primary hurdle in going to Saudi is getting a visa. These are things to remember:
      We had to apply to a local consulate but individual travelers cannot apply on their own. The visa application has to be submitted through an authorized travel agency. Even though the Umrah visa is free, these agencies charge between $175 - $200 per person for visa. Also, note that you can only apply within 30 days of going for umrah. You need to buy non-refundable return tickets before applying. The other mandatory requirement is to get a meningitis vaccination. CVS, Walgreens or RediClinic can do this without a prescription. Without insurance, it will cost between $150-$200. Get the vaccination record from the Pharmacy and submit it with your application. Common sense would dictate that you buy your tickets once visa approval is obtained but not in this case. Visa application usually takes about 1 week to process...might take longer during busy times. Next decision is where to fly in/out from. If you decide to go to Makkah first, you will have to fly into Jeddah. Since Jeddah is inside the meeqat***, you will have to wear your ihram from the point of origin. So we chose to fly into Madinah first.
      I would recommend either Turkish Airlines or Emirates. We flew Emirates from the US. We had a 5 hour layover in Dubai so we went out of the airport and had a nice dinner. US Citizens do not need a visa for Dubai (UAE).Came back to the airport around 11p for our 105a flight to Medinah.
      Day One:
      We arrived in Madinah around 345a, got out of the airport by 445a. Since we were not part of a group, I made arrangements transportation arrangements with or hotel. It took about 30 minutes to get to our hotel right next to Masjid Al-Nabawi (Mosque of the Holy Prophet).
      We stayed at Hotel Pullman Zamzam Madinah. Fantastic 5* hotel with great rooms and awesome breakfast. The only downside to the hotel is that it is on the opposite end of the Ladies entrance to the mosque so it took the ladies about 15 minutes to walk to the mosque. The hotel did provide a shuttle service for women at regular intervals.
      After checking-in, we took a quick shower and made our way to the Mosque just in time for Fajr - individual, not jama'ah.


      After every salah every day, the Saudis open Jana'at Al-Baqi for an hour or so. Much to my surprise, the Saudis were fairly relaxed in letting people get in, recite dua/ziarat albeit quietly and even take pictures.
      Imam Hasan (as), Imam Sajjad (as), Imam Al-Baqar and Imam Al-Sadiq are buried here.


      If I am not mistaken, I think Hz Umm-al-baneen is buried where I have drawn the red circle:

      Went back to our hotel around 7am. We ate breakfast and finally went to bed after a 24 hours journey.
      We woke up around 3pm and went to the Prophet's mosque for zuhrain. We prayed some other prayers so got back to the hotel around 430p. We rested a bit more and then made our way back to the mosque for maghribain around 7p. Once again, we stayed there for around 2 hours and then had dinner and then back to the hotel.
      We are recommended to pray full zuhr/asr/isha in Medinah.
      Day Two:
      After taking an early night, we headed to the Prophet's mosque around 2am where we prayed salat-e-layl and other prayers. Returned to our hotel just after fajr. Our schedule for the rest of the day was the same as the previous day. However, there are other ziarats in Madinah one can visit:
      Masjid al-Shams Masjid al-Zul Qibltayn Masjid al-Quba The Saba Saba Masjids Masjid al-Fatah Masjid Salman al-Farsi Masjid al-Ali A.S. Masjid al-Bidi Fatimah Zehra A.S. Ohud – Hazrat Hamza A.S. Day Three:
      I stayed in the Prophet's mosque from 130am - fajr. I had the honor to pray salat-e-layl in Riyad-al-Jannah (Piece of heaven) - it is adjacent to the Prophet's grave. After salah, I went to Jana'at-al-Baqi for Ziarah al-wida (Farewell ziarah).
      We rested for a couple of hours, had breakfast and then made preparations to head to Makkah for Umrah.
      The main thing required is to perform a ghusl with the niyyah (intention) Niyyat: “I am doing Ghusl for the following for wearing Ihram for Umra al-Mufradah Sunnat Qurbatan Ilallah”. You cannot use scented soap when doing this Ghusl.
      The next step is to wear the ihram. Ihram for men - consists of two pieces of white cloth and for ladies their usual daily wear is their Ihram, but it is highly recommended that it be white as it is the sign of purity.
      Please not that even though one is wearing the ihram, the niyyah for Ihram is done later.
      We bought our ihram in Medinah for about $20 (60-75 Saudi Rial).
      We checked out of our hotel to make our way to masjid-e-Shajarah. I made transportation arrangements while in Medinah. It cost just under $200 for a personal mini-van.
      We stopped at Ohud for 15-20 minutes for a quick ziarah of Hz Hamzah's grave.

      Then we made our way to masjid-e-Shajarah. This is a designated point of wearing ihram per sharia. There are 6 other places as well in different parts of Saudi.


      If you are already wearing ihram, you can take off the top portion and put it on again and make the niyyah (intention):
      “I am wearing Ihram for Umra al-Mufradah Qurbatan Illallah”. Immediately after making the niyya, recite the talbiya (calling) in arabic:
      Labbaik, Allahumma Labbaik, 
      Labbaik La Sharika Laka Labbaik,
      Innal Hamda WanNe’amata Laka Walmuka 
      La Sharika Laka Labbaik
      This is to be recited as many times as possible until you reach the vicinity of Makkah.
      After wearing the ihram and reciting talbiya, proceed to the inside of the Mosque and recite 2 rakat salat with the niyyah, "Offering 2 rakat salah for wearing ihram qurbatanillah".
      Once you adorn the ihram and make the niyyah, there are about 25 things that become haraam upon a person.
      Once we completed our prayers, we made our way towards Makkah, reciting talbiya as much as we could.
      One thing to note is that in Shia fiqh, men ar enot allowed to travel under shade during the day while in ihram.so it is advisable to plan your journey such that you arrive in Masjid-e-Shajarah around maghrib. If traveling during hte day, then there is a kafarah (penalty) of 1 sheep.
      We made a couple of stops on our way to Makkah which was about a 5 hour drive (430km or 250m)
      Day Three - Arrival in Makkah:
      We arrived in Makkah around 5pm. Since we had already prayed zuharain en route, we decided to rest a bit in our hotel. We woke up, did ghusl made our way to the Holy Kaaba around 730p. One has to be in wudu (or ghusl) for tawaf.
      We prayed maghrib and isha and then started our umrah. These are the steps for umrah:
      1) Perform tawaf (circumambulation) around the Kaaba 7 times. The niyyah (intention) is:
      I am going round this Ka’aba seven times for Umra al-Mufradah Qurbatan Ilallah.
      Since the masjid has several floors, it is important to remember that we can do tawaf on any floor as long as your height is below the top of the kaaba.
      2) Upon completion of tawag, recite 2 rakat salat-e-tawaf behind the Maqam-e-Ibrahim (place of Ibrahim) - recited just like fajr
      I am offering two Rakaat Salaat for Tawaaf of Umra al-Mufradah Qurbatan Ilallah
      3) Perform Sa'ae (wudu not necessary). This is where you walk from Safa'a to Marwa 7 times (about 3.5km in total). Niyyah (intention) is:
      I walk between Safaa and Marwah, seven times for Umra al-Mufradah Qurbatan Ilallah
      Going from Safa'a --> marwa = 1
      Marwa --> Safa'a = 2
      Safa'a --> marwa = 3
      Marwa --> Safa'a = 4
      Safa'a --> marwa = 5
      Marwa --> Safa'a = 6
      Safa'a --> marwa = 7
      So you start at Safa'a and end at Marwa.
      4) Once Sa'ae is over, the next step is taqseer (cuting part of mails of hair). Niyyah is:
      I am performing Taqseer so as to be relieved of Ihram for Umra al-Mufradah QurbatanIlallah
      It is best to do the 4 steps without too much of a break in between them. At this point, you can take a break and even take of your ihram.
      5) Whether you take a break or not, the next step is to perform tawaf-e-Nisa. Everyone has to do this - young/old, man/woman, married/unmarried, etc.). Niyyah is:
      I am doing Tawaaf-un-Nissa by going round this Ka’aba seven times for Umra al-Mufradah Qurbatan Ilallah
      6) Last step is to perform salat tawaf-e-Nisa. Niyyah is:
      I am offering two Rakaat Salaat for Tawaaf-un-Nissa for Umra al-Mufradah QurbatanIlallah
       

      The entire umrah took about 2 - 2.5 hours to complete.
      This is the completion of the umrah. 
      After completing our umrah, we went back to our hotel, had dinner and went to sleep.
      Day Four:
      We went to the Kaaba about 2 hours before fajr to perform Sunnah tawaf (each tawaf is 7 rounds). After each tawaf, reciting salat-e-tawaf is obligatory. You can make the intention of perfomr tawaf for others alive or deceased. This day was spent between our hotel and performing salah+tawaf throughout the day. There are other ziarah to be performed in makkah:
      Ka’aba Hajr al-Ismail Hajr-ul-Aswad Makaam al-Ibrahim Zam Zam Hills of Safa and Marwa Janatul-Mualla     Janab al-Khadijatul Kubra     Janab al-Abu Talib     Janab al-Abdul Mutalib     Hazrat Abdullah     Hazrat Amina Bint al-Wahab Masjid al-Jinn Cave of Thawr Cave of Hira Jabal al-Rahmah Muzdhalifa or Ma’shar Munna Masjid al-Kheef - In Munna We were able to perform the green ones above. We also had the opportunity to pray salat in the hateem which is not always open. We were able to touch the kaaba several times including rukn-e-Yemeni (corner from where Hz Fatima bint Assad went inside the kaaba to deliver Hz Ali (as).

      Pic in hateem under the kaaba

      Cloth of the kaaba - it is actually pieces of cloth sewn together instead of a very large piece of cloth.
      Day Five:
      We performed our final prayers and then checked out of our hotel to go to Jeddah airport. We flew from Jeddah --> Dubai and stayed there overnight, then flew back to the US.
      Summary:
      I was pleasantly surprised that the Saudis were pretty lenient this time.People were free to pray and take pictures as they wanted...for the most part. I would recommend taking salah, dua and ziarah information on your phones rather than books.
      I will also try to upload the guidebook I used for most of the trip.
      Please let me know if you have any questions. I tried to cover the most important aspects of umrah.
      Your Personal Guide to Hajj Umrah Ziyarat .pdf
       
    • By shadow_of_light in From Earth to Heaven
         0
      هر کجای این جهان آشوب و جنگ
      آه مظلومان زند بر قلب چنگ
      آن که بنیان ستم باشد از او
      مرگ بر او, ننگ بر او, نفرین بر او
      ....
      ....
      شیعه یعنی لا فتی الا علی
      پیروی از حق و بیعت با ولی
      از نوای نخل و شیونهای چاه
      سرخ رنگ میگردد فلک هر بامگاه
      ترک کن این قوم بی فرهنگ را
      این سرای ننگ پر نیرنگ را
      یاد کن محراب خونین رنگ را
      بوسه ی سرخ سروش مرگ را
      پیکر بی سر, گلوی پاره را
      شام تلخ مردم آواره را
      اشک لیلا, ناله ی شبگیر را
      دست و پای در غل و زنجیر را
      ....
      ....
      شیعه یعنی انتظار و صبر و درد
      خالقان عشق, مردان نبرد
      کربلا, عاشوریان بی قرار
      شیعه یعنی شور رفتن سوی یار
      ای تو هارون رهنمای راه راست
      سامری آمد بگو موسی کجاست
      سامری بدعت به دین انداختست
      گر نباشی کار مردم ساختست
      تا به ظهر آمدن در التهاب
      در تب و تاب ظهور آفتاب
      چون به فردا آید آن شاه وزین
      جهل را راند از روی زمین

      میکشد آن که ضعیفان را بکشت
      ابلیس را, آنکه بر حق کرد پشت

      آنکه بشکست حرمت ناموس را
      واپسین فرزند دقیانوس را

      پرده برمیدارد از رازی گران
      فاش میگردد حقیقت بر جهان
      شهسوارا! اهل عالم خسته‌اند
      خسته اما دل به دنیا بسته‌اند
      گر بیایی میشود عالم بهشت
      میگریزد از جهان ابلیس زشت
      جز کلام حق نیاید بر زبان
      در مساجد، در کلیسا، در کِنِشت
       
      ای تو هم‌پیمان با ابلیس لعین
      سایه‌ی شیطان بر روی زمین
      ای به رنگ خون, انگشتان تو
      استخوان مردمان بر خوان تو
      کرده پر از خون, هوس, جام تو را
      شوم میبینم فرجام تو را
      از چه لذت میبری؟ از سرکشی؟
      از خیانت, ظلم, نامردی, حق کشی؟
      بر ضعیفان و یتیمان تاختن؟
      پرچم حق را به زیر انداختن؟
      رایت ظلم و ستم افراشتن؟
      کیسه ها از مال خلق انباشتن؟
      کاخ خود را روی کوخی ساختن؟
      یا که از روی هوس, دل باختن؟
      ...
      ای خداوند جهان بیکران
      ای فراتر از مکان و از زمان

      ای خداوند رحیم و رحمدوست
      ای که افسار جهان در دست اوست

      بارالها طاقت دنیا کم است
      روزگارش مملو از درد و غم است

      پرده افکن از رخ خورشید شرق
      تا بیاندازد به دلها نور و برق
      زود گردان ای خدا دیدار را
      برشکن فرهنگ استکبار را
       
       
    • By Haji 2003 in Contemporania
         3
      Summary
      This post and the replies to it explore the notion of measurement in the Qur'an and the range of meanings that it conveys, from the mundane to the more esoteric and divine. These posts then focus on the association between measurement and precision in the Qur'an and how intertwined the two concepts are. Given that improvements in precision are associated with technological development - it is hypothesised that the latter could be considered a 'good' thing.
      Introduction
      A previous blog post, that I had written by myself) on this subject disappeared after it was posted. So here is another attempt, but this time I have resorted to posting a conversation with GPT4, pursuing lines of thought that had motivated the previous post. So usual caveats apply i.e. the references it gives etc. do need to be checked for accuracy.
       
      Please give some examples of the usage of the word 'measure' as used in English translations of the Qur'an.
      Sure, I can provide some examples from well-known English translations of the Qur'an that feature the concept of 'measure'. However, please remember that translations can vary based on the translator's understanding and interpretation. Here are a few examples:
      In the context of divine creation: In Surah Al-Furqan (25:2), the concept of 'measure' is used to describe the precision and orderliness of God's creation: "He to whom belongs the dominion of the heavens and the earth and who has not taken a son and has not had a partner in dominion and has created each thing and determined it with [precise] determination." In the context of sustenance and livelihood: In Surah Al-Isra (17:30), it is said that God provides for whom He wills in measured amounts: "Indeed, your Lord extends provision for whom He wills and restricts [it]. Indeed He is ever, concerning His servants, Acquainted and Seeing." In the context of time and life: In Surah Al-Insan (76:3), the term 'measure' is used to refer to the predetermined life span of every individual: "Indeed, We created man from a sperm-drop mixture that We may try him; and We made him hearing and seeing." In the context of moral and ethical standards: In Surah Al-Mutaffifin (83:1-3), those who give less than due when they measure or weigh for people are condemned: "Woe to those who give less [than due], Who, when they take a measure from people, take in full. But if they give by measure or by weight to them, they cause loss." These are just a few examples to illustrate how the concept of 'measure' is used in the Qur'an. It's a multi-faceted term with different implications depending on the context.
       
      Please expand on the references to the notion of measurement when applied to moral and ethical standards.
      The Qur'an, as the central religious text of Islam, contains numerous references to moral and ethical standards. These standards are often articulated in terms of measures, weights, balances, scales, or equivalents, metaphors that imply fairness, justice, and equity.
      Here are some instances where the notion of measurement is applied to moral and ethical standards:
      Fair dealings and honesty in transactions: In Surah Al-Mutaffifin (83:1-3), it is emphasized that people should be fair and honest in their transactions. The word 'measure' is used metaphorically to represent the moral standard for economic transactions. Those who cheat or give less than due when they measure or weigh for others are condemned. The recompense of deeds: The metaphor of scales or balance is often used in the context of judgment in the Hereafter. In Surah Al-Qari'ah (101:6-9), it is mentioned that on the Day of Judgement, people's deeds will be weighed, and those whose scale of good deeds is heavy will be successful, while those whose scale is light will have lost their souls. Here, 'measure' is used to metaphorically represent the weight of a person's good and bad deeds. Justice: Justice is a key value in Islamic ethics. The Qur'an urges believers to uphold justice, even against themselves or their kin. In Surah An-Nisa (4:135), it states, "O you who have believed, be persistently standing firm in justice, witnesses for Allah, even if it be against yourselves or parents and relatives." Here, the notion of 'measure' is inherent in the concept of justice, implying fairness and impartiality. Equitable treatment and reciprocity: In Surah Al-Baqarah (2:279), the Qur'an provides guidance about dealing with debts and emphasizes the importance of writing down the amount borrowed to ensure fairness and prevent disputes. This is a metaphorical use of 'measure', representing clear and fair dealings in social and economic transactions. These examples demonstrate how the Qur'an uses the concept of 'measure' to prescribe moral and ethical standards for individuals and societies. The consistent theme is a call for fairness, justice, and honesty in all dealings.
       
      Please expand on the issue of measurement where the references are to do with fair dealings and honesty in transactions.
      In the Qur'an, the concept of fair dealings and honesty, especially in business transactions, is heavily emphasized. The term 'measure' is often used as a metaphor to reinforce this principle. Here are some key examples:
      Surah Al-Mutaffifin (Defrauding; 83:1-3): "Woe to those who give less [than due], who when they take a measure from people, take in full. But if they give by measure or by weight to them, they cause loss." These verses clearly condemn dishonest business practices, specifically those involving shortchanging or defrauding others in measurements or weights.  Surah Al-An'am (The Cattle; 6:152): "And give full measure when you measure, and weigh with an even balance. That is the best [way] and best in result." This verse underscores the importance of giving full measure and maintaining a balanced weight, both literally in commerce and metaphorically in all dealings. Surah Al-Isra (The Night Journey; 17:35): "And give full measure when you measure, and weigh with an even balance. That is the best [way] and best in result." This verse is a near-repetition of the one in Surah Al-An'am, further emphasizing the importance of honest measurements and dealings. Surah Hud (11:84-85): "And O my people, give full measure and weight in justice and do not deprive the people of their due and do not commit abuse on the earth, spreading corruption." These verses were spoken by the prophet Shu'aib, admonishing his people to act justly in their business transactions and warning them against spreading corruption. These verses underscore the Qur'anic emphasis on integrity, honesty, and fairness in business transactions. From a broader perspective, these principles can be seen as fundamental to the Islamic concept of 'Adl (justice) and Ihsan (doing what is good and right). This includes upholding trust (Amanah), being truthful (Sidq), and avoiding deceit and corruption. Such principles are seen as crucial for maintaining social harmony and economic justice in society.
       
      You used the word metaphorically in your last answer. Can you please expand on the notion of how measurement refers in the Qur'an on a more metaphorical basis in the context of dealings?
      In the Qur'an, the concept of measurement is often used metaphorically to convey deeper moral and ethical lessons. When applied to the context of dealings, especially in business transactions, the 'measure' becomes a symbol of integrity, fairness, and justice. 
      Symbol of integrity: When the Qur'an instructs to give full measure, it's not just about the literal physical measure in transactions, but also about being fully truthful and transparent in all aspects of life. For example, when you promise something, you should fulfill it completely, not partially or deceitfully. Indicator of fairness: The measure in the Qur'an often symbolizes fairness. When it instructs to give full measure, it's urging fairness not just in transactions, but in all interactions with others. This includes treating others with respect, not taking advantage of others, and giving everyone their due rights. Representation of justice: The Qur'anic emphasis on accurate measurement can be seen as a metaphor for justice. Just as you wouldn't want to be cheated out of a full measure in a transaction, you should not cheat others out of their rights. This concept extends to social justice, implying that everyone should get their fair share of society's resources and opportunities. A signifier of balance: The Qur'an often pairs the concept of measure with balance, especially in the context of dealings. This can be interpreted metaphorically as a call for balance in all aspects of life, including personal conduct, social relationships, and economic activities. This balance is crucial in maintaining harmony and preventing exploitation or excess. These metaphorical interpretations of 'measure' highlight the depth of Qur'anic teachings, where simple instructions carry profound moral and ethical implications. It's a reminder that the principles of integrity, fairness, justice, and balance should permeate every aspect of a person's life, from business transactions to personal relationships and societal interactions.
       
      Can you give references to any commentators who have written about these metaphorical uses of measurement in the Qur'an, quotations from their works would be useful.
      Islamic scholars and commentators have indeed explored the metaphorical aspects of the Qur'an's teachings on measurement, particularly in the context of ethics, justice, and societal dealings. While I don't have direct quotations available, I can provide an overview of these interpretations based on various well-known exegeses (Tafsir). 
      Tafsir Ibn Kathir: Ibn Kathir, a renowned medieval scholar, in his commentary on Surah Al-Mutaffifin (Defrauding; 83:1-3), explains the metaphor of measurement in terms of fairness and honesty in transactions, and extends this to mean fairness and honesty in all aspects of life. Tafsir Al-Jalalayn: The two Jalals, Jalaluddin Al-Mahalli and Jalaluddin As-Suyuti, in their Tafsir Al-Jalalayn, provide succinct interpretations of the Qur'an. Regarding verses about measurement, they stress the importance of justice and integrity, interpreting these metaphors in both a literal and ethical sense. Tafsir Al-Tabari: Al-Tabari, a prominent early Islamic scholar, interpreted the verses related to 'measure' as moral and ethical guidelines applicable to all aspects of life, not just business transactions. His interpretation also highlights the repercussions of dishonesty and deceit. Tafsir Al-Qurtubi: Al-Qurtubi, known for his emphasis on the practical and legal implications of the Qur'an, interpreted the verses about measurement and balance as guidelines for just dealings and the establishment of a fair society. For direct quotations and a more in-depth understanding, I would recommend consulting the mentioned Tafsirs or commentaries. They are widely available in various languages, including English. 
      Remember, interpretation of religious texts can be complex and subjective, and different scholars may have different interpretations of the same verses. For a nuanced understanding, it's important to consider the historical context, the entirety of the Qur'an, Hadiths (sayings of the Prophet Muhammad), and scholarly interpretations.
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