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BrKhalid
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« on: Oct 16, 2011 10:40 PM »


"Remember, remember the 5th November"

For those in the UK, the above will be the instantly recognisable refrain associated with Guy Fawkes Night and the famous Gunpowder Plot.

Legend has it that Mr Fawkes and his conspirators were disenchanted with the then King, James I, and hatched a plot to kill him at the state opening of parliament.

By sheer luck, the police got wind of the plan and caught the entire gang in the basement of the House of Commons moments before they were about to light the numerous kegs of gunpowder they had dragged down there.

So pleased was James I with the foiling of the assassination, that he instigated a day of thanksgiving on November 5th (the day of the capture) and the rest, as they say, is history.


Besides reminding us that terrorism was alive and well in the 17th century, it seems odd that the day is  more remembered for Guy Fawkes than James I and like, Christmas, is nowadays just an excuse for family get togethers and celebrations (fireworks, bonfires etc) rather than having any real significant meaning.


It so happened that whilst I was pondering this quaint English tradition that I chanced over an interview with a certain Simon Cowell.

Mr Cowell for the uninitiated is the self styled music mogul of a generation and the man responsible for the X Factor.


Talking about the sudden demise of his father in the late 90s, he made these interesting comments:


"It was a horrible, horrible, horrible time, like I said. You believe everyone is going to live for ever and they don't. And all the stuff you think you care about, the hit records and stuff like that, it's just meaningless."

 "I can't admit things, that's why I can't go to funerals and stuff like that. I find it very, very difficult to deal with that kind of reality. I shut myself off totally because it affects me so badly."



It is said that there are four types of people when it comes to attitudes towards death and the afterlife.

The first group are so engrossed with this life and worldly pleasures that they simply deny it's existence, since remembrance thereof will fill them with sorrow at that which they have to forsake.

The second group fear death because their repentance is, as yet, incomplete and wish for more time to rectify their affairs.

The third love their Lord and are pleased with (and yearn for) the means by which they are reunited with their beloved.

The fourth and last group, are those who are perfectly reconciled and content with Allah's will such that they care not for themselves whether they live or die and happily resign themselves to the decision of their Lord.


It is always astounding how discussing death can be like the huge elephant in the room amongst non Muslims (as well as some Muslims) especially since everyone recognises it as a "reality" but still continue to deny it.


It is like that email which is  too hard to deal with or an assignment too complicated and wearisome that one would rather bury it and not have to deal with it in the hope that it will magically disappear.


It is indeed the height of folly that people strive with the utmost effort to chase their 'dreams' whilst completely ignoring the 'reality' before them.


Of course, Islam gives great counsel on the remembrance and contemplation of death and our Prophet saw exhorted us to do so often so that we would not be beguiled by this world and it's charms.


With that in mind and with Halloween fast approaching, perhaps we should all be donning Grim Reaper costumes and go around chanting:


Remember, remember the shatterer of all pleasure


Not quite as catchy as the original ditty I grant you, but far far more relevant!!

Say: "O ye my servants who believe! Fear your Lord, good is (the reward) for those who do good in this world. Spacious is God's earth! those who patiently persevere will truly receive a reward without measure!" [39:10]
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« Reply #1 on: Oct 17, 2011 02:04 AM »

wsalam,

jazaks for the post, very deep.   i have to say i'm still in that second group. Sad i always feel like i need more time to repent and fix everything and try to do better before I have to face Allah. as for denying reality it's pervasive in this dunya. everything seems designed to make us think that we're going to live forever with all the 'stuff' we accumulate.

bruv you could seriously start your own blog! but then we'd miss out on all your thoughts here. do you mind if i post this on the 5th of november on the blog?

and poor simon, he was THIS close to marrying a Muslim girl and "converting in name" according to all the gossip mags. could have been a good influence, and don't you believe Islam helps us deal with all those realities, giving us ways to think about and deal with them.
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« Reply #2 on: Oct 17, 2011 02:25 AM »

Excellent post and as always, a great reminder from you Bro! ma'sha'allah. (Makes me want to meet you even more, so I can soak up your advice and wise words!)

Yeah, I have to say I'm in that second group as well . . . as the saying goes, so much to do and so little time!

Wow, that is pretty interesting about Simon . . I think the whole idea of death hit me when my nana (maternal grandfather) passed away back in the 90s and then of course, more so when my father died. yet, I mean this in a positive way, that it made me look at death in a positive way, that we go back to our Creator, but also  that I had to try harder to rectify my issues/faults before it was too late . .still working on many of those for sure . . .

Jazak'Allahu Khairan bro - another gem from you!

BABA
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The Believers, men and women, are protectors one of another:  [9:71]
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« Reply #3 on: Oct 17, 2011 09:37 AM »

salam



Okaaaaay, I absolutely have to correct the Guy Fawkes thing, Mr Fawkes was caught beneath the houses of Parliament guarding the gunpowder alone, he was subsequently tortured into betraying the rest of the would be terrorists!


I have a relative, who has behaved very badly throughout life. I noticed when a very close relative passed away that he is utterly terrified of death, he refused to climb into the grave to lay his mother to rest in her grave, he wouldn't even help carry her, my(then very young) brother and dad had to do it.

It's those who have become beguiled by the love of this world who fear death, but only because their love for this life has lead them to disregard what they know to be true and to use their power and strength in this life to do zulm.




Wassalaam

And when My servants question thee concerning Me, then surely I am nigh. I answer the prayer of the suppliant when he crieth unto Me. So let them hear My call and let them trust in Me, in order that they may be led aright. Surah 2  Verse 186
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« Reply #4 on: Oct 17, 2011 03:14 PM »

Asalaamu Alaikum bro

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i have to say i'm still in that second group.

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Yeah, I have to say I'm in that second group as well

I think it would be fair to say that the majority of us are in the second group but alhamdulillah for not being in the first!!


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Islam helps us deal with all those realities, giving us ways to think about and deal with them.

There is no doubt our religion helps to keep us grounded, quite literally in fact, since we have to place our heads on the floor five times a day.

By all means use the post for the blog if you wish. bro


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Makes me want to meet you even more, so I can soak up your advice and wise words!

In the words of Br UBAB, we can head down Ilford Lane and grab ourselves some Halal grub Wink

Just let me know when you're coming bro

Quote
Okaaaaay, I absolutely have to correct the Guy Fawkes thing, Mr Fawkes was caught beneath the houses of Parliament guarding the gunpowder alone, he was subsequently tortured into betraying the rest of the would be terrorists!


I stand corrected; obviously I was only taught the Hollywood version at school Wink


Quote
their love for this life has lead them to disregard what they know to be true and to use their power and strength in this life to do zulm.


When people are actually faced with death all the money, houses, cars, prestige, children, arguments etc etc become completely irrelevant as the reality dawns that none of the above can save them for what they now have to face.

A real litmus test is how each one of us would change our behaviour if we were told we had cancer and that we only had a day, a week, a month or a year to live.

The Angel of Death is out there and one of these days he is going to pay us all a visit.

Say: "O ye my servants who believe! Fear your Lord, good is (the reward) for those who do good in this world. Spacious is God's earth! those who patiently persevere will truly receive a reward without measure!" [39:10]
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« Reply #5 on: Oct 17, 2011 06:34 PM »

Assalaamualaikum,
Death is inevitable.
Yet many fail to accept it.

I have seen many well educated,well traveled,well experienced,old people who have lived  to see much in their lives  ,even doctors who see death so closely often fearing their own death.It is surprising though that many are non-muslims.Have seen them divert the topic of death in order to escape the thought of it.

I think that our lives should be lived in order to please Allah...a short or long life lived which pleased Allah is enough..
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« Reply #6 on: Oct 18, 2011 12:11 AM »

wsalam,

This thread reminds me of the Imam Shafii poem I put up a little while ago:


Let days go forth and do as they please

And remain firm when settled is the Decree

Don’t be afraid of what happens by night
For the affairs of this world are not to last

And be a man, strong in the face of calamities
And let your nature be that of kindness and honesty

If your faults become too much in front of the people
And you wish that they were to be concealed,

Then know that kindness covers all faults
And how many faults are kept hidden by kindness!

No sadness lasts forever, nor any happiness
And you shall not remain in poverty, or any luxury


Generosity cannot be hoped from the miserly
For no water exists in the Fire for the thirsty

Your provision will not be decreased due to life’s delays
And it cannot be increased due to your haste

If, in your heart, you possess contentment
Then you and those who possess the world are equal


And for him upon whose horizon death descends,
No earth can offer him protection, nor any sky

Indeed, the earth of Allah is certainly vast
But if decree descends, then the world constricts

Let days be the ones that betray you at all times
For no cure can avail a person of death
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« Reply #7 on: Oct 18, 2011 10:39 AM »

salam


I don't think  I would alter my life if  I knew I was to die tomorrow- I'd take holiday from work that is owed me up to tomorrow! But that's it.


I try not to walk away from people on a bad note, those  I love I always tell them so in case  I never see them again, so they'll remember the last words spoken were ones of affection.

I always try to leave my house with wudu, I always do dhikr walking along to wherever, because that to me is productive use of my time inshallah.  I could pray more do more ibadah, but I try do all the fard to the best I can. So I wouldn't change the way I live my life in general I don't think.

I don't think I'm afraid of dying actually. I'd be afraid to leave my girls to the kindness of others....but then I would leave them in the care of Allah and I know he is by far the best Wali.


Br Khalid, we were taught the history of Guy Fawkes, the teacher spent a lot of time explaining the torture method, I believe he got the rack!




Wassalaam

And when My servants question thee concerning Me, then surely I am nigh. I answer the prayer of the suppliant when he crieth unto Me. So let them hear My call and let them trust in Me, in order that they may be led aright. Surah 2  Verse 186
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« Reply #8 on: Oct 18, 2011 03:36 PM »

Asalaamu Alaikum bro

Quote
I have seen many well educated,well traveled,well experienced,old people who have lived  to see much in their lives  ,even doctors who see death so closely often fearing their own death.

Just goes to show that all that education, travel and experience counts for nought unless it is used to prepare for the hereafter.


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Your provision will not be decreased due to life’s delays
And it cannot be increased due to your haste


So true, if only we concerned ourselves with what we actually did with our provision instead of worrying about how much we received.


Quote
Br Khalid, we were taught the history of Guy Fawkes, the teacher spent a lot of time explaining the torture method, I believe he got the rack!


There is some poetic irony here, in that a thread about death should eventually wind back to someone being tortured on the rack Wink


Certainly not the way I would choose to go!!

Say: "O ye my servants who believe! Fear your Lord, good is (the reward) for those who do good in this world. Spacious is God's earth! those who patiently persevere will truly receive a reward without measure!" [39:10]
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