Rafed English

Instilling Peace

The process of instilling and instructing the self has a great effect on the human psyche. Humans are by nature prone to anger and revolt, to seeing the faults o f others, to entering into wrangles and fights with others, and to hatred, disdain, enmity and cutting off relationships. It is imperative that the roots of these things are extirpated from the heart of the individual and following on from that the rest of his limbs.

This can be achieved through instilling into the self that the human being is a harmoniser, a peace-maker, decisive, intelligent, a thinking being, a purposeful b eing, and an administrator. If the individual instils this into his self day and night and throughout his life he will eventually develop a peaceful nature and he will be able to help to advance the Islamic movement even in an environment of wars, revo lts and revolutions.

In a hadith it is said: 'The most worthy of things to be imprisoned is the tongue.' Hence the individual must customise himself to guarding his tongue and his heart.

In another hadith it is said: 'If you see the believer silent then draw near to him for he is receiving wisdom.'

The individual must also guard his hand and his pen, his movements and his pauses in fact everything so that he may move the Islamic nation forward. Those who say: 'We are nervous characters and we cannot bear pressure', or they say: 'So-and-So has belittled our opinion', or they say: 'We think he is in the wrong so how can we remain silent?' These types of people are not able to advance the movement.

Hence we see in the history of the Messenger of Allah (S) and the history of successful movements many of this type of person. The hadith report that an ill-mannered man of the infidels came to the Messenger of Allah (S) and cursed him while the Messenger was in the sacred mosque reciting the Qur'an. The Messenger of Allah did not say a word to him but the man obviously wanted to provoke a fight with the Messenger of Allah (S).

The Messenger remained calm and quiet but the man cursed him and cursed him. Then he spat in the face of the Messenger of Allah (S). The man himself continues the account saying that: 'Muhammad (S) did no more than wipe the spit off his face and did not say a thing.' What was it that made the Messenger of Allah do this when he was justified in at least returning what he had received with like as in the Qur'anic verse:

{ . . . and whoever attacks you then attack them in the same way that they attack you.} (2:194). It was because the Messenger of Allah (S) saw that entering into a squabble with this infidel was not important and it would not serve his goal.

Hence he returned to peace and carried on in the way that Allah had marked out for him. In this way the Islamic movement succeeded because of the clemency, patience and peacefulness of the Messenger of Allah (S). The poet says: 'You will never be able to be clement until you adopt clemency.' Meaning that if there is revolution in your heart then do not let it surface but rather adopt clemency and patience and control yourself so that you are able to be a peace-maker even in the worst times of excitement and breakdown.

There is another account about the Messenger of Allah (S) that he passed by the family of Yasir; Yasir and Sumayyah and 'Ammar, when the Polytheists were torturing them. He looked at them with kindness and said: 'Patience O family of Yasir for you have been promised paradise.'

He did no more than this. This was because the Messenger of Allah (S) knew that if he entered into a marginal dispute with the torturers he would lose his main impetus and he would not reach his main goal, which was to establish the pillars of Islam. In this way, the Messenger, his righteous companions and his impeccable family were characterised with the most amount of peacefulness and peace, self control and control of the tongue, hand and reaction. They were then ab le to make advances because of this peace.

We can also see that some reformers who were able to rescue their countries from the grip of colonialism were able to control themselves. One who was not able to do this and would get irritated at the slightest thing began to instil in himself every day the qualities of a peace-maker who loves the good for all people. He used to say: 'Every day when I awoke in the morning I would instil these things in myself and also when I wanted to sleep until I was able to carry pressure and insults.'

The Muslim instils in himself peace every morning, noon, afternoon, at sunset, and evening in the obligatory prayers when he repeats in every prayer: 'Peace be upon you O Prophet and the Blessings and Mercy of Allah, Peace be upon you O righteous servants of Allah, Peace be upon you and the blessings and mercy of Allah.

' Peace to the leader namely the Messenger of Allah (S), p eace to himself and peace for everyone else. This symbolises the peacefulness of the leader, the peacefulness of the person, and the peacefulness of the Islamic community or greater than the Islamic community because saying 'Peace be upon you' encompasses everyone to enter into peace.

In this way the Muslim instils peace into himself every day at least fifteen times. If the individual instils peacefulness into himself he will have the peace which will enable him to lead, to progress, to bear difficulties, not to become irritated with others through insulting words or slander and backbiting and cu rsing. There is a hadith in which the Messenger of Allah saw two people cursing each other so he said: 'They are two Satans reviling each other.'

Whatever the case may be, the Islamic movement which seeks to bring about an international Islamic government must adopt peace as its mantra, and strive for peace. Not the peace of the communists for this is the peace of infidelity and killing. What we seek is an Islam in the shade of Peace meaning in the shade of Allah for one of His names is al-Salam (Peace):

{He is Allah, there is no god but He, The King, The Holy, The Peace, The Faithful, The Protector, The Almighty, The Omnipotent, The Imperious.} (59:23)

What we seek is a peace in the shade of peace, which is in the shade of Allah and in the shade of Islam. Hence we should always try to instil in ourselves peace and compassion, even for the enemy, so that we may draw them to the straight path. It has been related that the Messenger of Allah (S) if the harm he suffered from his people became great would say: 'O Allah, guide my people, for they have no knowledge.

' He did not seek to invoke Allah against them but rather called upon Allah to guide them. In the end the Messenger of Allah achieved that success which has no parallel in the entire world. We ask Allah to grant us such success in this. Surely He is the granter of success and the best helper.

Adapted from the book: "War, Peace & Non-Violence" by: "Sayyid Muhammad Sadiq Shirazi"

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