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The Will of a Stranger

 

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My brother... have you contemplated when you see the Dead carried on the necks and taken to his home and his grave, which is the first step to the Hereafter?

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Allah glorified and exalted has said: {“O ‘Ibâdî (My slaves) who have transgressed against themselves (by committing evil deeds and sins)! Despair not of the Mercy of Allâh: verily, Allâh forgives all sins. Truly He is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.} [Surat Az-Zumar 39:53],

 
‏{قُلْ يَا عِبَادِيَ الَّذِينَ اَسْرَفُوا عَلَى اَنْفُسِهِمْ لَا تَقْنَطُوا مِنْ رَحْمَةِ اللَّهِ اِنَّ اللَّهَ يَغْفِرُ الذُّنُوبَ جَمِيعًا} الزمر:53
 
 

 

Transliteration: Qul ya AAibadiya allatheena asrafoo AAala anfusihim la taqnatoo min rahmati Allahi inna Allaha yaghfiru alththunooba jameeAAan innahu huwa alghafooru alrraheemu
 
and the Prophet, prayers and peace of Allah be upon him, has said: “Allah stretches out His hand during the night so that the people repent for the sins committed in the day and He stretches out His hand during the day so that the people may repent for the sins committed in the night, (He would accept repentance) until the sun rises in the west (before the day of Resurrection).” [Reported by Muslim]
 
«إن الله عز وجل يبسط يده بالليل، ليتوب مسيء النهار. ويبسط يده بالنهار، ليتوب مسيء الليل. حتى تطلع الشمس من مغربها» رواه مسلم
 
The Prophet, prayers and peace of Allah be upon him, has also said: “He who seeks repentance (from the Lord) before the rising of the sun from the west (before the Day of Resurrection), Allah will accept his repentance.” [Reported by Muslim]
 
«من تاب قبل أن تطلع الشمس من مغربها تاب الله عليه» رواه مسلم
 
So, young man: know that death is right in front of you. Death is the truth whereof there is no doubt, it is a certainty whereof there is no ambiguity, and it is a withdrawal and a separation, it is a change of the status and it is to move from one home to another.
 
Death is the most horrible event, and the most hideous incident, and it is the cup whose taste is bitter and hateful, it is the Killjoy, and the dispenser of groups, the destroyer of wishes, and the thing which is turning boys and girls into orphans, it is the silent preacher who takes the rich and the poor, the healthy and the sick, the honorable and the humble, and the young and the old. Where are those who walked through the land in the morning and in the afternoon? Where are those to whom the land has declined in humbleness to their prestige and glory? Where are the friends and the loved ones? Can you find a single one of them? Can you hear even a whisper of them? Allah the Annihilator of nations has annihilated them, and Allah the Exterminator of nations has exterminated them. Allah has brought them out of the wide palaces into the limited graves under the stones and rocks, so they became such that nothing could be seen except their dwellings! What they have collected did not benefit them nor did all that which they used to earn avail them, their loved ones and friends handed them over and they were abandoned by the brothers and their sincere friends, they are forgotten by close and distant ones, and if they could talk they would say:
 
I am a resident of graves
My family is wandering every vale and dale.
As if I was not their love
Nor were they my beloved in the darkness.
Come and say your peace. If you decline
Say amen to people’s peace
 
Imagine my brother, the journey of the stranger
 
Imagine yourself lying amongst your family, and that you have fell into anguish, and that tears have become hard to be shed, and that your tongue has become sluggish to utter words, and that grief has intensified, and the waling and screaming of your family and brothers have raised.
 
It is as if I am lying amongst my family
On the bed, and their hands are turning me over.
It is as if those around me are moaning
And crying over me and mourning and lamenting.
The doctor came to cure me
Medicine, this day, is of no good for me.
I am in the intensified throes of death
Without kindness or leniency.
 
Doctors are called and medicine is brought about for you; they only increase your grief and ordeal. Then you realize that death has took you by surprise, and the Angel of Death has come for you, doctors have now lost hope on you, and the beloved ones have left you, anguish befell you, and the stupor has come for you {And the stupor of death will come in truth} [Surat Qâf 50:19]
 
‏‏{وَجَاءَتْ سَكْرَةُ الْمَوْتِ بِالْحَق} ق:19
 
Transliteration: Wajaat sakratu almawti bialhaqqi 
That moment is the last moment to lay the last glances at the sons and daughters, brothers and sisters, to lay the last glances at this transient world; and the features of stupors are shown on your face, and groans and moans come out from the bottom of your heart.
 
I am in the intensified throes of death
Without kindness or leniency.
 
Then the throes of death and agony intensify and your soul reaches to the collar bone {Nay, when (the soul) reaches to the collar bone (i.e. up to the throat in its exit), [26] And it will be said: “Who can cure him (and save him from death)?”} [Surat Al-Qiyâmah 75:26-27]
 
‏‏{كَلَّا إِذَا بَلَغَتِ التَّرَاقِيَ ﴿٢٦﴾ وَقِيلَ مَنْ ۜ رَاقٍ} القيامة: 26-27
 
 

 

Transliteration: Kalla itha balaghati alttaraqiya (26) Waqeela man raqin
 
and every trick has become with no effect, and every means has failed, and you have learned that you will get ultimately to your Lord: {The drive will be, on that Day, to your Lord (Allâh)!} [Surat Al-Qiyâmah 75:30]
 
{إِلَىٰ رَبِّكَ يَوْمَئِذٍ الْمَسَاقُ} القيامة: 30
 
 

 

Transliteration: Ila rabbika yawmaithin almasaqu
 
At this moment your book of deeds is being folded, either on good deeds or bad deeds, and you call and say: {“My Lord! If only You would give me respite for a little while (i.e. return to the worldly life),} [Surat Al-Munâfiqûn: 10],
 
‏{رَبِّ لَوْلَا اَخَّرْتَنِي اِلَى اَجَلٍ قَرِيبٍ} المنافقون:10
 
At that moment you feel that your heart is pulsing in pain. At that moment you feel a sense of remorse.
 
You feel that the days are over, and that this worldly life has passed, so, imagine yourself dear reader, imagine yourself on the day when you are being turned over on the washing bed (special bed designed for washing the dead) by the washer, your glory is gone, your wealth is taken, you are drawn from the house of your beloved ones, you are prepared for the dust, it is being called: where is the one being washed?
 
The most beloved of all people hurried
to the washer to wash me
He said: O people we want a subtle washer
noble, proficient, knowledgeable and sagacious
A man came and took my cloth of
he made me naked and straightened me.
 
Then, they dressed you with the shroud and you were carried to the house of rottenness, and were removed from your loved ones and prepared for the dust. In one moment you have become as if you were not a thing worth mentioning, your pages have been turned, and you became among the dead, and you are taken out of this world and left this life.
 
And they pulled me out of this world
I regret leaving without enough provisions
And four men carried me on the shoulders
the rest were behind bidding me farewell.
 
My brother... At-Tamimi said: “two things cut off my enjoyment of this worldly life: remembering death, and remembering the situation when in the hands of Allah the Almighty.”
 
And Ad-Dakkak said: “whoever remembers death frequently is honored with three things: quick repentance, contentment of the heart and vitality of worship, and whoever forgets death is punished with three things: delaying of repentance, never to be content with what is enough, and laziness in worship.”
 
Al-Hassan Al-Basri, may Allah have mercy on him, said: “death has spoiled the bliss of people, so search for a living where there is no death.”
 
O you who are busy with the world
And who was deceived by hope
Death comes suddenly
And the grave is the box of your deeds
 
My brother... The hearts and souls attach to, but they even compete for the wreckage of this transient world, and perhaps, eventually, this will lead to forgetting death, the grave and the Hereafter. The heart may even harden and neglect his duties towards Allah. We seek refuge in Allah from the heart which does not show reverence, from the eye that does not shed tears, from the soul that is not satisfied, and from an invocation that is not answered, we seek refuge in Allah from those four.
 
My brother... have you contemplated when you see the Dead carried on the necks and taken to his home and his grave, which is the first step to the Hereafter? Have you seen the deceased when buried in the grave and left alone? He has no money, no father, no mother, and no wife. Have you seen how a brick is cushioned under his head and how he is drawn to the Qibla (the Ka’ba direction), and bricks are put all over him and dust is poured down over him.
 
My brother...
 
If we were to let be
Death would be the comfort of every living man
But when we die we are resurrected
And held responsible for everything.
 
Have you thought about your situation and contemplated that if you were this dead person who is being buried: by Allah, what would you wish for? Have you thought that this is the path of each living man and that death and the Day of Resurrection are bound to come?
 
It is death, do whatever you are doing
You must gulp from the Cup of death
Everyone in his family wakes up
And death is closer to him than his shoes
 
My brother... Allah the Almighty has said: {And the stupor of death will come in truth: “This is what you have been avoiding!”} [surat Qâf 50:19].
 
‏{وَجَاءَتْ سَكْرَةُ الْمَوْتِ بِالْحَقِّ ذَلِكَ مَا كُنْتَ مِنْهُ تَحِيد}  ق:19
 
 

 

Transliteration: Wajaat sakratu almawti bialhaqqi thalika ma kunta minhu taheedu
 
So, who would argue about death and its stupor? And who would be able to delay and postpone his due death hour? {and when their term comes, neither can they delay nor can they advance it an hour (or a moment).} [Surat An-Nahl 16:61]
 
{فَاِذَا جَاءَ اَجَلُهُمْ لَا يَسْتَاْخِرُونَ سَاعَةً وَلَا يَسْتَقْدِمُونَ} النحل:61
 
 

 

Transliteration: faitha jaa ajaluhum layastakhiroona saAAatan walayastaqdimoona
 
My brother... Live as long as you want, but you are dead; love whomever you want, but you are leaving him and do whatever you want, but you are rewarded according to it.
 
My brother... Visit the graves one day and stop to contemplate and reckon! Were not the inhabitants of those graves dwelling on the surface of this earth; eating and drinking and having fun...? etc. For this reason and for the seriousness of the matter I wanted to remind my neglectful soul and remind my brothers to remember death by visiting the graves, so that these cruel hearts soften, and those unjust souls become calm. But remember that no matter how long or short time be, and no matter how high man reaches the highest grades and levels, tomorrow he is a wretched soul leaving this world for no return: {And truly you have come unto Us alone (without wealth, companions or anything else) as We created you the first time. You have left behind you all that which We had bestowed on you.} [Surat Al-An’âm 6:94]
 
‏{وَلَقَدْ جِئْتُمُونَا فُرَادَى كَمَا خَلَقْنَاكُمْ اَوَّلَ مَرَّةٍ وَتَرَكْتُمْ مَا خَوَّلْنَاكُمْ وَرَاءَ ظُهُورِكُم} الأنعام: 94
 
Transliteration: Walaqad jitumoona furada kamakhalaqnakum awwala marratin wataraktum ma khawwalnakum waraathuhoorikum
 
So O slave of Allah, hasten to repentance, with repentance your soul transcends, your heart gladdens, and you prevail in this world and the Hereafter. The words of repentant people are faithful and their tears are hot and their determinations are strong, they have tasted the sweetness of faith after the bitterness of dismay, and they have found the coolness of certainty after the fire of confusion, they have lived the life of security after the anxiety and the turmoil. And O brother, beware of procrastination and delay, you would not know by tomorrow if you will be amongst the living or amongst those who are buried under the layers of dust, and who bid farewell to this world, and they have become in the darkness of the graves and in the confined shrouds, after they have lived in houses and palaces. Listen well my brother to the caller of the truth and answer the call of Allah the Almighty: {O you who believe! Answer Allâh (by obeying Him) and (His) Messenger when he calls you to that which will give you life,} [Surat Al-Anfâl 8:24]
 
‏‏{يَا اَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ امَنُوا اسْتَجِيبُوا لِلَّهِ وَلِلرَّسُولِ اِذَا دَعَاكُمْ لِمَا يُحْيِيكُم} الأنفال:24
 
Transliteration: Ya ayyuha allatheena amanoo istajeeboo lillahi walilrrasooli itha daAAakum limayuhyeekum
 
Declare it loudly and frankly in a voice that shakes the sentiments and scents the ears and sends in faith in the hearts: “The real happiness is not found but only in the obedience to the Most Merciful.”
 
So turn to Allah the Almighty by your heart and soul, physically and spiritually and you will find the sweetness of faith before the Angel of Death takes your soul. Death does not differentiate between the young and the old. Turn to Allah and repent to Him, He is the One who forgives (accepts repentance); the Most Merciful and that His Mercy embraces all things.
 
Sufian Ath-Thauri, may Allah the Almighty have mercy on him, said:
 
O my soul: repent, death is due
Disobey your whims; they are deceitful.
Do you not see death catching us
One after the other.
Every day we escort a dead to his resting place
His death reminds us of our dead.
O my soul I left my wealth
And got out naked from this world.
After fifty years spent playing
Has come my end; has come my end.
Why are we shutting our eyes to our destinies?
And forget He Who never forgets us.
We are becoming more cautious and this world restraining us
As if our restrainer lures us to cautiousness.
Incidents have turned them
And transferred them from a home to another.
They left the well-furnished towns
And dwelled the dusty graves.
O you running in the fields of fun
Wearing fancy clothes in intoxication.
Time and life have passed
What has passed is enough, what has passed is passed.
 
Prayers and peace of Allah be upon our Prophet Muhammad.
 
 
Author: Abdul Rahman bin Muhammad Al-Luhaib
Dar Ibn Khuzaymah
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