Rafed English

Islamic Culture and Religious Studies Book - Volume 3

Islamic Culture and Religious Studies Book - Volume 3


by :

A Group of Shi'a Scholars

In The Name Of Allah (S.W.T.), the Beneficent, the Merciful

TAWHEED Monotheism

In the past two books, we have studied the need for a God to be accountable to and spoken of the importance of believing in the Oneness of God, which is the foundation stone of our faith.

In this first chapter of our third book, we will begin our study by looking into the concept of 'Cause and Effect'. After this, we will discuss how to prove the existence of God.

These are extremely important topics that cannot be taken lightly. We should keep in mind that in order to make any progress in gaining the pleasure and nearness of Allah (S.W.T.), we must first be willing to put the effort towards achieving this aim. We must open our hearts as well as our minds to receive this information and only then will we be able to convert Imaan (faith) into Yaqeen (Conviction).

Munaajat Sing to the Lord

O my Merciful Lord! Whose sweet name all tongues mention, The entire world is warm and bright because of Your warmth and wonderful lights.

We need only to glance at the mountains, jungles, deserts and oceans, To find You more visible than visibility itself! You are hidden from our eyes, but our eyes have gained sight from You. I sacrifice my life, my self, to You O Lord, who is hidden and invisible. In the heavens above and the earth, O Lord, how can I describe the beauty that you have created?

Birds came to being because of You, colored flowers and beautiful gardens came into existence at Your command. The universe enjoys the sounds of waterfalls and You are the spring of it The world accepts orders from You alone, because You are the continuous Cherisher of our needs.

You are ever generous, independent, merciful,
One who solves every soul's problems and caretaker of us all.
You are the most kind; You are the Best of all bests; You give company to every heart, and every spirit derives its purity from You.
You are Ever-Forgiving and Merciful.
O Lord, enlighten my spirit through Your divine light, make my tongue busy with Your dhikr (remembrance)
O my Lord, free my inner spirit and make my heart anxious to meet You! 1

You walk past a tree and see the leaves on its branches gently stirring as the wind kisses them. Your eyes appreciate the beautiful scene but consider this - what about the underlying message of this simple natural phenomenon? Looking at the same event through an angle other than that of visual appreciation, we can see that when we see leaves moving we immediately register that this movement is a result of the wind blowing against them.

Therefore, it would be correct to say that the wind is the Cause of the stirring of the leaves i.e. if the wind did not blow, then it would not Result in the leaves moving.

Thus, we can call the actual movement of the leaves - Ma'lool (Effect) and the wind itself - Ellat (Cause) Let us look at another example that has been made famous in scientific history. We all know the story of the famous philosopher/scientist who sat under an apple tree. As he pondered, one apple suddenly dropped to the ground.

He picked it up, looked at it, smelt it and then wondered to himself 'Why did the apple fall down?' From this simple and obvious question, the man went on to discover the force of gravity, which is today one of the most important aspects of physical science. Here we can say that the falling down of the apple was the Ma'lool and the gravity of the earth was the Ellat.

Let us look at a third example to make things even clearer. Imagine that you have sat down in a room with your back to a wall. Strangely, as you lean back, you feel heat emanating from the wall and wonder to yourself what the cause of the heat can be. Seeking your answer, you leave the room and try to search for what is on the other side of that particular wall.

When you reach there, you see a heater attached to it and everything falls into place! Now you understand what the cause of the heat is and the hot wall is no longer a mystery. In such a case, the heater is the Cause and the warm wall is the Effect. If there had not been a heater then the wall would not have been warm.

All this shows us that cause and effect are two halves of a complete relationship. Without a particular cause, its effect would no longer exist. Therefore we can conclude that in our world full of existence, there is an underlying system based on the theory of cause and effect.

The Non-Physical State

Cause and effect do not always manifest themselves in the visual or physical world as in the examples above. Sometimes we can see only the cause and sense the effect, at others it may be the opposite i.e. we sense the cause and see the effect.

For example, move your hand. This movement of the hand is the effect of your willing the action to happen. If you did not want your hand to move then it would have remained stationary. Thus, your will becomes the unseen cause.

The same would be with look at something. The looking is an action, which can be classified as an effect. You are the cause of it. If you did not initiate it, then the looking could not have been.

You listen to what your teacher is saying. This listening is an action based on you. Your listening exists only because you do. It is an effect of your existence - which is the cause in this case. From these examples, we can further see that the effect is based on and related to the cause.

You look after your friend and take care of him. The caring that you show is related to your self. If you are not there, your kindness to him will not be there. Similarly, your knowledge is related to your existence. If you are not there, your knowledge and any actions resulting from it will also cease to be.

There is a special connection between your knowledge, your kindness, your Iraada (Willingness) and your self. All these qualities are related to and in need of you. This special relationship is called Eliyyat (Cause and Effect).

Your actions are related to you and their existence is from your own existence. You are the one who moves, who writes, who walks, who talks, who thinks, who understands, who shows love, who knows and decides. All these actions are effects and you are the cause of them all. Because of you, they exist.

In his life, man will always consciously or subconsciously work with the knowledge he has of causes and their effects. When he finds himself thirsty, he looks for water to quench his thirst. When he feels the pangs of hunger, he eats. When he feels cold, he lights a fire. He does all this because experience has taught him that water is the cause of removing thirst, food is the cause of appeasing hunger and fire is the cause of bringing warmth.

Even in our daily lives, we react by searching for causes e.g. when we hear an noise, we look around for its source (cause) because we know that it could not exist without one; when we enter a dark room, we immediately search for the switch to turn on the lights.

Doctors study the causes of diseases in order to find cures to them. To explain to others what you have in mind, you have to speak. Cause and effect is a common sense that is part and parcel of our lives. Every human being is aware of this issue and he understands, accepts and he bases his life on it naturally.

If a human being is not able to understand this issue or does not accept it, then life for him would be impossible. Insaan (human being), by nature, looks for the cause of all that he sees. He constantly asks himself: Why are the leaves moving? Why did the apple drop down? Why is the wall is warm? Why this? Why On the other hand, from this same theory, a human being expects something to happen (effect) from every occurrence (cause) in life. He expects the sunrise to bring light, the fire to give heat, the water and the food to remove his thirst and hunger.

Seeing that even the simplest of all structures in this world survives on the Law of Eliyyat (Cause and Effect) we find ourselves wondering about the larger order.

We ask ourselves: If even a passing noise or a feeling requires a cause to exist then what of the universe and everything in it? What is the cause of the heavens and earth, the stars and the sun? What brought human life and its complexities into existence?

From these questions, it is a simple step to understanding and accepting that the cause of such a fantastically complicated system as our universe must be an entity that possesses flawless Intellect and limitless Power.

This Cause would have to be able to bring into being all the forms of animated and unanimated matter and arrange them in a logical form within a self-supporting structure. This Entity would have to possess qualities far above and beyond those of the most powerful creation that resulted from Its Will.

Such an Entity would then not fall into the worldly category of cause but would be better defined as Creator. This Creator is Allah (S.W.T.). All-Knowing, All-Powerful, Independent, Eternal. He encompasses everything and all things need and rely on him to be. Just as our simple qualities rely on our existence to be, our entire selves rely on Him to exist. We are at His Mercy.

When we realize exactly how helpless we are in front of Him, we then can appreciate His kindness and generosity to us. Despite having the power to destroy us if He so wishes, Allah (S.W.T.) looks upon us with patience, love and forgiveness.

Thus, He is worthy of being Master and we should be proud to call ourselves His slaves for even this is a status far above that which we deserve. Only when we understand this unique relationship, will our souls truly humble themselves before him in gratitude for His countless favors and take His guidance as a way of life with which to live.

A Holy Verse

"Surely Allah upholds the heaven and the earth lest they come to the knot. If they should come to the knot, there is none who can uphold them..." Sura Fatir, Verse 41

SOMETHING TO THINK ABOUT ...

1. There is a special connection between all things that exist in this world. That connection is called Elliyat - the cause and the effect.

2. The universe is a huge collection of existences each of which has a cause.

3. The existing universe and everything in it is referred to as Adillat (proofs) of the existence of Allah (S.W.T.) Who, Himself, is needless of a cause.

Think And Answer

1. What is the connection between cause and effect? 2. What is the specific term used for the theory of cause and effect? 3. Mention a few things that rely on you for their existence and you are the cause of them. Do not use the examples given in the text. 4. Mention few natural reactions that prove that human beings understand how the theory of cause and effect works. Try to use examples from your daily life that have not been mentioned above. 5. What do we mean when we say the role of cause and effect is a universal phenomenon? Explain two proofs to support your answer.

Burhan (Proof) is a powerful tool of explanation. It helps to clarify important concepts and removes doubts. So far we have talked about two different kinds of proof about the existence of God.

i)Burhani Nazm (Proof of Systematical Creation) - we have discussed this in the previous books when we looked at the solar system and the water cycle.

ii) Burhani Eliyyat (Proof of Cause and Effect) - which we have talked about in the previous chapter. Let us now compare these two proofs.

1. BURHANI NAZM (Systematic Proof)

This proof is based on the systematic way that the universe is formed. When we observe the world around us, we find that there is an order to the way every component of it works. Each part is related to the other in some way to form a whole.

There is absolute co-ordination between all the areas. From this perfect co-operation within the system, we can deduce that there is one power that possesses all the knowledge required to establish this organised system i.e. Nazm.

Therefore, we can further conclude that the universe is created by an Almighty God, Who has absolute control over it. According to this proof, we can clearly see that Maker of the worlds is one who is All Aware. The result is this uniquely designed system that is governing the whole universe.

2. BURHANI ILIYYAT (Proof of Cause and Effect)

In the previous lesson, we looked at the universe, not as a whole but in its separate parts. We tried to look at the components of world we live in not as fractions of a whole but as existing entities in themselves.

From our discussion, we concluded that nothing is self-existent and every thing requires a cause. All things need what we call Ellat (Cause). We then said that as this world is a collection of existences or Effects, so naturally they must be the result of a Cause.

The proof of Iliyyat is based on this. Since the world itself is a collection of complex existences, there can be no doubt that it needs a very great source for its own existence. That great power is Allah (S.W.T.).

Both Burhani Nazm and Burhani Iliyyat are supposed to clear our minds and awaken our hearts to the realities that surround us. By pondering upon these proofs, we strengthen our own Imaan in the Almighty God.

It is in the Fitrah (Nature) of human beings to be aware of the existence of the Almighty. Those who seek to further intensify their faith rise to the heights of Yaqeen (Certainty) about Him. The issue then becomes so clear in their eyes, that they no longer require any proof about the existence of God.

In all difficulties, they seek refuge in Him, knowing that their very existence depends upon Him. They never lose hope or experience fear because they know every other creation, however powerful it may seem, needs Allah (S.W.T.) to be and is under His Command and Iraadah (Will). Such people do not bow down in front of anyone except the Almighty. They do not accept the superiority or wilaaya of anyone but those from God.

A Holy Verse

"Your Lord is the Lord of the heavens and the earth, Who brought them into existence." Sura Ambiya, Verse 56

SOMETHING TO THINK ABOUT ...

1. Burhani Nazm states that the world is a systematic creation working in perfect harmony. The source of such a system should be a supreme, powerful, knowledgeable and mighty God.

2. Burhan Illiyat defines the fact that everything has a cause and an effect. This universe is an effect and every effect needs a cause therefore the cause must be a magnificent, absolute entity i.e. the Almighty (S.W.T.)

3. Those who are truly aware of the Creator are so certain in their faith that they do not need proof of His existence.

Think And Answer

What does proof mean? When is it used? So far how many proofs do you have on the existence of God? Explain the proof of designed system in your own words. Explain the proof of cause and effect in your own words.

Why do we need to prove the existence of God? Does the human being with a pure nature need any proof about God? Explain your answer.

Introduction to Chapter Two

In The Name Of Allah (S.W.T.), the Beneficent, the Merciful

MA'AD; The Life in the Hereafter

In our previous discussions, we have tried to study the reason for the creation of human beings. We have seen that nothing in this world was created without an aim and we also discussed a little about the Day of Judgment. Let us now look deeper into the philosophy of Ma'ad.

The Day of Judgment is a day of Accountability. During the course of this chapter, we will learn about Paradise and Hell. When we study what we know of Jannah (Heavens) we can appreciate the marvels and favors of Allah (S.W.T.) upon His obedient servants. We can also learn of the plight of the dwellers of Hell who will receive Allah (S.W.T.)'s severe punishment. We know that all this results from the deeds we perform in this world. The choice of eternal bliss or eternal punishment is ours.

The aim of studying these important issues is to create an internal awareness, a sort of alarm bell in our minds that will encourage us to think of the results of our present actions and help us to stay on the Right Path.

Let us reflect on the verses of Sura Naba (The Great Event) from the Holy Qur'an: In the Name of Allah, the Most Kind, the Merciful

1. Of what do they ask one another?
2. About the great event
3. About which they differ?
4. Nay! Nay! They shall soon know;
5. Nay! Nay! They shall soon know;
6. Have We not made the earth an even expanse?
7. And the mountains as projections (thereof)?
8. And We created you in pairs,
9. And We made your sleep to be rest (for you)
10. And We made the night to be a covering
11. And We made the day for seeking livelihood
12. And We built over you seven strong (heavens)
13. And We made a shining lamp
14. And We send down from the clouds water pouring forth abundantly,
15. That We may bring forth thereby corn and herbs,
16. And gardens dense and luxurious

These beginning verses of Sura Naba (The Great Event) speak of the wonderful creations of Allah (S.W.T.) i.e. the heavens, earth, universe, the rise of day and fall of the night, rain, water, plants, trees etc. From these descriptions, we are reminded of His favours on us. We also realize how grateful we must be to Him. The surah then continues on a different subject:

Surely the Day of Decision is (a day) appointed: The day on which the trumpet shall be blown so you shall come forth in hosts,

And the heaven shall be opened so that it shall be all opening, And the mountains shall be moved off so that they shall remain a mere semblance (of what they were).

Allah (S.W.T.) has given great emphasis on the appointed Day of Judgment. He keeps reminding us that He created human beings with an aim and that we will one day have to answer for our success in pursuing and achieving this goal. The final verses of the surah deal with Jannah and Jahannam:

Surely hell lies in wait,
A home for the rebellious,
They will live therein for ages
They shall not taste therein coolness nor drink
But boiling and intensely cold water,
Requital corresponding (to their evil deeds).
Surely they feared not the account,
And called Our communications a lie, giving the lie (to the truth)
And We have recorded everything in a book,
So taste (that which you have earned)! For We will not add to you aught
but chastisement,
Surely for those who guard (against evil) is achievement,
Gardens and vineyards,
And those showing freshness of youth, equals in age,
And a pure cup,
They shall not hear therein any vain words nor lying.
A reward from your Lord, a gift according to a reckoning:
Lord of the heavens and the earth and what is between them, the
Beneficent God, with Whom none can converse.
On the day when the spirit and the angels shall stand in ranks; they shall
not speak except he whom the Beneficent permits and who speaks the
right thing.
That is the sure day; so whoever desires may take refuge with his lord.
Surely We have warned you of a chastisement near at hand, the day when man shall see what his two hands have sent before him and the unbeliever shall say: 'O! Would that I were dust!'
We know for a fact that those who have obeyed the commands of Allah (S.W.T.) and performed good actions will witness a happy ending in the hereafter. Those who have strayed from the right path and have disobeyed the Islamic commands will indeed face a miserable ending. The doers of good and evil will be separated from each other and each group will be given the recompense they justly deserve.

A human being has to understand and analyze his purpose of life. This will increase the value of the blessing that is life and will inspire him to make the most of it in perfecting himself. Volumes of traditions, sayings and comments have discussed the reality of the Day of Judgment and the Ma'soomeen (a.s.) have warned mankind of the severity of disbelief and choosing the path of damnation.

The Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) has said:

" Four things will be questioned on the Day of Judgment:

1. How a person spent his life

2.How he utilised his physical body for the sake of Allah (S.W.T.) and Islam.

3. In what manner a person attained his wealth and how he used it.

4. Love of Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) and his pure family (household)."

In another hadith, the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) says: " Whosoever hurts another human being, even if it were with a physical stick, will be beaten in the same manner, on the Day of Judgment." He has also said:

" I swear by Allah (S.W.T.), punishment in the hereafter is more severer than the calamities of this world."

The Day of Qiyamah will truly be a trying time. All people will rise up and stand in front of the Almighty for the accountability of their deeds. A man will complain about issues concerning his personal life e.g. concerning his wife and if she tries to deny the truth, the angels will seal her mouth, so that she cannot speak and instead her limbs will bear witness to her actions.

Likewise, if a wife complains on that day, lamenting to the Lord: "My husband used to burn the house with his rage" then the body parts of the man will bear witness against him if her claim is true.

It will be a day of ultimate Justice and all will be faced with their actions in this world. Those who usurped the rights of the others and oppressors will have to face a similar fate as that which they inflicted upon the innocent.

Our Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) is a Mercy to the Universe and he does not wish for any single soul to be punished in the hereafter. Yet, he has reminded us over and over again of the reality that we will have to face. In one of his hadith, he says: "God! Show mercy upon the people who have usurped the rights of others before they depart from this world. May they fulfill the dues they have taken from the oppressed and seek forgiveness for their actions. For on the Day of Judgment, there will be no money debts, only actions will speak (either good or bad) and accompany human beings.

"If a person does not have any good actions, he will indeed face bitter consequences and will be answerable on that great Day. It will be the Day that will advocate true Justice, none will be able to speak against the Justice. Only Truth shall prevail. For the true believers there is no choice except to attain taqwa." Our Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) then warned Believers to give utmost importance to:

(a) Salaat (Prayers)

(b) Akhlaq (Moral Excellence)

Although we know that each individual is accountable for his actions, we must realise that our perception is flawed and refrain from judging others. Our vigilance should concern only our own actions and not that of others. For them Allah (S.W.T.) is Judge as He is for us. The Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) told us: "Account yourselves before you account others."

A Holy Verse

"O Dawood! Surely We have made you a ruler in the land; so judge between men with justice and do not follow desire, lest it should lead you astray from the path of Allah; those who go astray from the path of Allah, they shall surely have a severe punishment because they forgot the Day of Reckoning." Sura Su'ad, Verse 26

SOMETHING TO THINK ABOUT ...

1. A human being has been created with a purpose in life. He has been created for a holy aim and through this aim he will be able to achieve salvation in both this and the next world.

2. Qiyamat is a Day of Accountability for all actions. Human beings will be judged according to their deeds. The pious will enjoy Jannah (Garden of Bliss). Sadly, a Kafir (disbeliever) will not even smell the scent of paradise but will be banished to never ending punishment in Jahannam.

3. People will complain about each other on the Day of Judgment. However, the accused will not be allowed to speak and instead the parts of his body will be witness to his actions. No one will bear the burden of another and no soul shall be able to deceive or cover his misdeeds

4. Allah (S.W.T.) will bestow the rights of the oppressed on them and allow them to avenge their oppressors of this world.

Think And Answer

Define the Day of Separation?

Why is Qiyamat known as the Day of Accountability?

List four issues that will be raised on that day?

What is our duty, according to the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.)'s saying, concerning the rights of people?

Why is this day known as Yawmul Hisaab?

name with your reasons. Give the meaning of the What are the actions that can be taken in preparation for the hereafter? Mention and explain

A person once came to Abu Dhar Ghafari and asked him, "Why don't we like to taste death?"

Abu Dhar replied, "Surely, it is because we have put a lot of effort in constructing this world and have not thought about the eternal world. We have not even thought of building our abode in the hereafter which is the eternal world." The person then asked, "What is going to be our situation when we enter the next world?"

Abu Dhar answered, "There will be two groups of people: The good-doers and the bad-doers. A person in the first group will be like one who has been far from home, family and friends for a long time, has finally come back to meet them.

You can imagine how happy such a person would be! The good doers will be in such a position and will enjoy the blissful life. They will go back to their Lord, and enjoy the pleasures of Paradise in the company of angels, prophets and the Awliyaa (Trustees). They will be receiving unlimited favors from Allah (S.W.T.).

"A person in the second group - the bad doers - will be like one who had committed heavy crimes and after committing these crimes had run way as a fugitive. When such a criminal is captured, his sorrow is great and his burden heavy. One can only imagine what person in such a situation would feel! The remorse that he feels when he witnesses his bad deeds, and knows he is to be punished for them, is indescribable.

The bad doers will be in the same situation. They will find themselves facing the wrath of their Lord, tasting His chastisement. They will know the greatness of their crimes and feel ashamed for what they have sown in the temporary world."

The man asked Abu Dhar, " O Abu Dhar! Can you tell me what position I have in the next world? Will I be in Paradise or Hell-fire?"

Abu Dhar told him, "O man! Check your deeds with the book of Allah (S.W.T.). See what the book says and what have you done. Allah (S.W.T.) says: 'Believers will enter Paradise and the criminals will enter Hell fire.' Look at yourself, and take account of your soul. You will get an answer."

The man finally inquired, " Then where is the Mercy of Allah (S.W.T.)?" Abu Dhar explained, " The mercy of Allah (S.W.T.) is very close to the Believers." In other words, it is wise to keep in mind that in the hereafter, a person will have no other choice except to enter the paradise or hellfire. However, his decision can be made in this world.

Jannah (Paradise)

Paradise is the most attractive place for the God-conscious, the pure, the obedient and the good doers. It is the abode of prophets and their followers. Especially created by the Lord, as a reward and source of pleasure for His servants, Jannah is a beautiful and luscious place.

It has been described as being very wide and spacious, more massive than the heavens and the earth put together! It is bright, glittering with a heavenly shine. Its wonders are awesome and beyond the capability of the human mind to imagine. The Holy Qur'an often mentions paradise referring to it as Jannah.

Jannah is an Arabic word, meaning green or implying an exotic, luscious garden. In various verses and traditions, Jannah has been described as a garden full of beautiful trees, giving cool shade to the heavenly dwellers. Under these trees flow cool springs, rivers and streams of pure, sweet and sparkling water.

Fruits of all kind - known in this world and unknown - of different shapes, colors and tastes will hang ever-ripe, in abundance, from the branches of the trees. A fragrant breeze will gently drift through the boughs providing freshness to the Believers.

There will be no such thing as pain, hurt, sorrow or restlessness in Jannah. Even the fruit and food will be ever fresh and never rot! The good-doers will enjoy infinite blessings, their every wish shall be granted and Jannah will serve them in every way. We are told that even the branches of the trees will lower themselves to allow believer to pick fruit off it!

Palaces, mansions and castles are present for the Believers with spacious, elegantly furnished rooms. The Believers will be clothed in the most beautiful garments covered in emeralds, pearls and other glittering gems. They will spend their time exploring and reveling in the wonders of Paradise and when they wish to rest, they will relax on soft couches in the company of the Ma'soomeen (a.s.), prophets, martyrs and other dwellers of Jannah.

The Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) says:

"I saw in paradise, angels constructing beautiful palaces whose bricks were made up of emeralds, gold and pearls! Sometimes they would build very swiftly, and at other times rather slowly. Many times the angels would stop constructing the mansions all together. So I asked the pure dedicated angels, 'Why do you stop working on several occasions?

"They said, ' We begin by building a palace for one of the believers.' "I asked them again, 'Why do you stop so many times?' "The angels replied, 'Because we do not have the building materials and so we cannot continue.'

"I then asked them, ' What are the building materials that you do not have in order to continue with the constructions?'

"And the angels answered, ' Through the dhikr (Remembrance) of Allah (S.W.T.), a mo'meen sends us the materials to start building with but when he forgets, we lack the materials and thus we have no choice but to stop our work.' "

From this beautiful account, we can see that the countless favors and blessings of paradise are made up of our own good deeds that we sow in this world. Some of those favors are so beautiful that no human eye has ever seen and no human ear has ever heard of them before!

Heaven and its favors are indeed beyond our understanding and imagination. Whatever we attempt to describe about the magnificence of Paradise does it no justice and it is really far beyond that.

In order to give us a slight understanding of these wonders, Allah (S.W.T.) mentions them in the Holy Qur'an, saying "A likeness of the Garden which the Righteous are promised; there flow beneath it rivers; its foods and shades are perpetual; this is the requital of those who guarded (against evil), and the requital of the Unbelievers is the Fire." Sura Ra'ad, Verse 35

"(As for) those who say: 'our Lord is Allah!' ; then continue in the right way, the angels descend upon them, saying: 'Fear not, nor be grieved, and receive good news of the garden which you were promised.' " Sura Fussilat, Verse 30

"Allah has promised to the Believing men and the Believing women, gardens, beneath which rivers flow; to abide in them (the gardens) and goodly dwellings in gardens of perpetual abode; and best of all is Allah's goodly pleasure - that is the grand achievement." Sura Tawbah, Verse 72

Glory be to Him! There will be neither death, nor sadness or illness in Jannah. Paradise dwellers will continuously receive Allah's Mercy and above all, they will receive the happiness of their Lord. This will be the greatest reward of all! Note: The dwellers of Jannah are not all in the same level. They differ according to their individual purity of actions and piety in deeds.

Jahannam (The Dreaded Hell-Fire

Jahannam is the place for the Mushreekeen, Hypocrites, and the evil-doers. Life in Hell will be extremely painful and hard. Its dwellers will undergo painful chastisement in various forms of punishment. They will live in misery and un- ending agony. One cannot imagine the severity of chastisements in Hell! The Holy Qur'an describes the blazing fire of Hell and its inhabitants in various surahs:

"And say: The truth is from your lord, so let him who pleases believe, and let him who pleases disbelieve; surely We have prepared for the disbelievers, a fire the curtains of which shall encompass them about; and if they cry for water, they shall be given water like molten brass which will scald their faces; evil the drink and ill the resting place." Sura Kahf, Verse 29

"On the day when it shall be heated in the fire of Hell, then their foreheads and their sides and their backs shall be branded with it; this is what you hoarded up for yourselves, therefore taste what you hoarded." Sura Tawbah, Verse 35

Such will be the abode for those who lived in this world without care! The reality of the next world is permanent and those who take Islam lightly will have to bear the dreadful consequences in Hell.

Just like the man who spoke to Abu Dhar, each and every one of us is curious to know where we shall be: in Jannah or Jahannam. If we ponder on the sayings of the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.), we will be able to speculate on our destination. He has said:

"One has to overcome great heights of difficulties in order to enter Paradise. Jannah is surrounded by difficulties, hard work and effort. Whosoever tries hard and accepts the difficulties of this world in the way of Allah (S.W.T.), gives service to humanity and does good deeds, will receive the blessings of Jannah."

He has also warned us of the painful abode in Hell, saying:

"Surely the hell-fire, is surrounded by carnal desires, lust, worldly temptations and one has only to follow these to reach the miserable state in the fire of hell. Whosoever obeys and bonds himself to worldly temptations and lusty desires, runs after it with unlimited passion will indeed reach the doomed place - Hell."

A Holy Verse

"They shall have chastisement in this world's life, and the chastisement of the hereafter is certainly more grievous, and they shall have no protector against Allah." Sura Ra'ad, Verse 35

SOMETHING TO THINK ABOUT ...

1. The final destination in the hereafter is either Heaven or Hell-fire. There is no other choice. 2. Jannah is the most awesome place that the Merciful Allah (S.W.T.) has created as a gift for His close servants. It is vaster than the heavens and the

earth together! Those Believers with the best conduct, moral excellence and good deeds will find that these virtues will lead them into Jannah. The favours of Jannah are so enormous, that one cannot even begin to imagine them. It is beyond human description and comprehension.

3. Jahannam - The abode of Hell - is the most painful and difficult place that the Almighty has created for disbelievers and unjust people. Those who disobey Allah (S.W.T.) and perform ugly deeds in this world are the ones who shall end up in this most painful and severe environment of the hell.

Think And Answer

1. Why do you think we dislike death? Use Abu Dhar's answer as a basis for your own.

2. What are the favors of good-doers the moment they reach the Day of Judgment (as described by Abu Dhar)?

3. What is the status of bad doers in the hereafter according to the answer of Abu Dhar?

4. Describe the position of the Believers in the Hereafter. Mention the counsels of Abu Dhar

5. Where is the Mercy of Allah (S.W.T.)?

6. Describe Paradise according to the verses mentioned in this lesson.

7. Describe Hell according to the verses mentioned in this lesson.

THE DAY OF ACCOUNTABILITY

Beware! It is the Almighty who has brought the grand news of the Day of Judgment,
Soon you shall learn, the promise of God is nothing but true, Open the eyes of your heart, so you may appreciate the mighty signs of the Almighty,
The trees give birth from the heart of seeds And indeed they extend their care to all;
Flowers in the awesome garden; the colorful butterflies,
Singing of the Birds of the Night; streams of fresh water pouring down from falls,
Who else beside the Kind God can provide all these as His wonderful signs?
O Men! Think today about yourself!
A day shall come for your accountability which is indeed in front of you The day of Rewards - both the Good and the Bad
The day of immense pain, anguish and difficulties, indeed the day of Qiyamat!
A day that would judge all actions - good and evil,
And God will advocate His divine Justice in His majestic Court,

Whosoever pleads to be guilty, he shall be disgraced and surely humiliated and nothing will remain for him on that day,
Sustenance for him will be nothing but remorse, and falling in to the pits of fire! The status of a believer will deserve a castle in paradise,
Abundance of His blessings,
The fragrance of Jasmine and Nargis shall overwhelm him,
In this place full of God's blessings,
Most Surely, to be bestowed with God's nearness will be the Best of all Gifts!

Introduction To Chapter Three

In The Name Of Allah (S.W.T.), the Beneficent, the Merciful

THE PERFECT GUIDES

We have seen the reason for and importance of sending prophets, their aims and objectives. Let us further look at this concept of Nubuwwah and study other areas within it, such as the characteristics of prophets.

Besides knowing about the prophets, we will also aim to study the common beliefs and values found amongst all divinely revealed religions. Through this we will be able to appreciate the fact that all prophets were sent from the same source - Allah (S.W.T.) with the same message for all Mankind.

Have you seen the beautiful flowers that flourish in gardens? Or the trees that bear abundant fruit in orchards? Have you ever taken the time to wonder about the process involved in this result that we see? How long does it take for a tiny seed to grow into a fruit-bearing tree? How complex are the steps that a flower must go through in order to mature into a beautiful blossom? Who guides the trees and the flowers so that they fulfill their aim in existence?

According to our belief in Tawheed, we know that all creatures are designed, and managed by Allah (S.W.T.). The continuation of their existence i.e. their growth and maturity is also under the direction of the Almighty (S.W.T.).

Who else besides God can teach the tree how to grow? All other creations are similar to the tree - enjoying divine guidance, being nurtured by the Lord. This movement towards perfection can be referred to as 'General Guidance'.

Now that we have established that all things receive a common guidance in their progression, we can next ask ourselves, what of human beings? Humans differ from other creations in one clear aspect and that is that they possess the power to think, make decisions and choose. A few of the other creations enjoy the same power, but in a very limited scale. Allah (S.W.T.) bestowed this favour in its highest form on human beings only.

By nature human beings, like other existences, share in the common divine guidance. But their special powers of Aql (Intellect) and reasoning cannot be catered for by this same guidance. Allah (S.W.T.) created humans with the gift of understanding the difference between good and bad and the ability to appreciate ideals and values. So who then shows human beings this difference between good and evil? Who guides Man towards the right ideals and values?

It has always been the prophets who have taken up the responsibility of showing Man the path of salvation. They were the Warners and the Bearers of Truth. Allah (S.W.T.) bestowed upon them a divine message. All prophets were given the task of guiding the intellect of man towards progress and maturity.

Three Fundamental Principles

Throughout the long history of the world, thousands of prophets were sent to guide mankind to the divine call of Allah (S.W.T.). Many brought with them divine laws e.g. Nooh, Ibrahim, Musa, Issa and the last messenger Muhammad Mustafa (s.a.w.w.). These prophets are called Ulool - Azm.

Other prophets did not bring a special shariat but propagated that of the prophets who came before them. We must realize the root that all these religions were based on, is one and the same. All the messages invited human beings towards a single goal and all divine faiths are based on three basic facts i.e.

1.Tawheed - Knowing God as the One and Only Creator of the Universe.

2.Ma'ad - Belief in the Day of Resurrection and Life after death.

3.Ambiya - Belief in all Godly sent prophets and their divine call.

All messengers called to the people to accept these three basic criteria and to submit to the only Lord of the Universe. This has been true from the first prophet, Adam (a.s.) to the Seal of Prophethood, Muhammad (s.a.w.w.). This way of life that they called people to follow is known as the Religion of God. Each one proclaimed the truth of only one system and that is none other than Islam.

Characteristics Of Prophets

Being specially chosen by Allah (S.W.T.) to bear His message, prophets possess certain unique characteristics. These include:

1. Ability to Communicate with God

Prophets obey and totally submit to God. They receive the divine message from the Him and bring it down to mankind. They are similar to human beings in the physical aspect i.e. they eat, drink, sleep and enjoy the bounties of Allah (S.W.T.) just like any other human being.

What is unique and special about them is their spiritual aspect. They have a profound understanding above that of the ordinary human. Their spirits have been so purified that they are able to perceive and understand religion and beliefs to a level of perfection.

They are thus able to communicate with Allah (S.W.T.) and receive guidance from Him. The message of Allah (S.W.T.) comes to them as a Wahy in various ways. They can feel it with their spirits or even hear the voice of an angel deliver it. Their eyes and ears can see the angels and derive knowledge from their speech.

The prophets deserve this honorable status because they have proved themselves through their total conviction and submission to Allah (S.W.T.).

2. Ismat (Infallibility)

Prophets are Ma'soom, which means that they are free from all kinds of sin, mistake and evil. This infallibility is a result of their perfect knowledge about the Almighty Allah (S.W.T.). Due to the deep understanding they have, they do not commit any sort of sin or even attempt to be in the company of evildoers. Their Ismat also allows them to receive the Wahy of the Heavenly Message that they in turn convey to humanity.

They never go wrong in guiding and leading the people towards the true path of Allah (S.W.T.) and they are always under His protection.

3. Faith in the Eternal Message

Prophets are fully convinced in and have total certainty in Allah (S.W.T.). They are well aware of their divine goal in life and have not the slightest doubt about the life in the hereafter. Through their total reliance on the actions of the Almighty, they are able to spread the word of God.

Because of this unique understanding, they fear none but the Lord and are not affected by the rejection and attacks of people against them. It is amazing when you see that despite the harsh and cruel response from people, the prophets never weakened in their position regarding Allah (S.W.T.). They persevered in all the trails that came their way and never strayed from the right path.

A Holy Verse

"Say: I am a mortal like you; it is revealed to me that your God is One, therefore whoever hopes to meet his lord, he should do good deeds, and not join any one in the service of his Lord". Sura Kahf, Verse 110

SOMETHING TO THINK ABOUT ...

1. All creations go towards their perfection through the common guidance of Allah (S.W.T.). However, a human being who has been created as a thinker and bestowed with the power of reasoning moves towards his own perfection using the instructions shown to him by Allah (S.W.T.) through the prophets.

2. All prophets have one aim - to invite people to submit themselves towards the Almighty for achieving eternal happiness.

3. The Ulool - Azm are those prophets who received the divine laws. They are five in number and the last of them is the Seal of Prophets - Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.w.). His message from the Almighty is the universal message of Islam.

4. Prophets are human beings with special attributes, among them, having a unique communication with Allah (S.W.T.). They receive the guidance for Mankind, are supported, cared for and protected by the Almighty.

5. Prophets are Ma'soom. They do not commit sins or mistakes. This quality makes them unique from others, and allows them to be an ideal example to humanity. They are truthful in both words and practice and are perfect in their morals.

6. Prophets are submerged in the certainty of God, have innate faith and call Mankind towards the sublime faith in ONE GOD. They allow nothing to stop them from spreading the true message of God.

Think And Answer

1. What is common guidance?
2. What is the difference between human beings and other creatures?
3. What does the common guidance of man include? What is his guidance in regards to his thinking and intellect?
4. What are the three principles prophets invite human beings towards?
5. Through which ways do prophets attain revelations?
6. What is the reason for Ismat (Infallibility) in prophets?

Introduction To Chapter Four

In The Name Of Allah (S.W.T.), the Beneficent, the Merciful

PROPHET MUHAMMAD (s.a.w.w.); The Last Messenger of Allah (S.W.T.)

The mission of the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) was never an easy one. From the beginning he was faced with opposition and trials. He had to bear both physical and emotional pain in the first years of Be'that. We have seen the attitude of the Kuffar when he tried to first tell them about his good news in Daawatul Dhul Ashira, how they attacked him both in Mecca and in Ta'if, the losses he suffered after leaving She'b Abu Talib etc.

We now have a foundation on which to begin our study of the incentive of his migration to Medina and the philosophy behind this hijrat.

The season of Hajj always provided a very good opportunity to the Holy Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.w.) to meet with pilgrims and other travelers and talk to them about the message of Islam. The Prophet (s.a.w.w.) explained Islam to them and invited them to bring Imaan on it while they were away from the Mushrikeen (Idol-Worshippers).

It was during one such season that the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) held discussions with six people from the tribe of Khazraj in Medina. It all began when they heard the Prophet of Islam (s.a.w.w.) read out some verses from the Holy Qur'an that spoke about Tawheed and rejected Shirk and idol-worship. He was speaking to the public about performing good deeds, and reminding them about the hereafter and the next life.

His actions are supported in the Qur'an in Sura Nahl, Verses 64 to 69 as follows: "And We have not revealed to you the book except that you may make it clear to them and that about which they differ, and as a guidance and a mercy for a people who believe…"

The words of Muhammad (s.a.w.w.) attracted the six people mentioned above and the love of Islam embedded itself in their hearts. They knew that according to the Jewish texts, Musa (a.s.) had predicted the advent of a prophet who would be based in Arabia and would invite people towards the oneness of God.

From their observation of the noble light that shone from the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.)'s face and his eloquent words, they knew that they had found that prophet. Thus, they gladly and wholeheartedly accepted Islam.

When the time came for them to depart and head back home, they told the Prophet (s.a.w.w.), "Now we are going back to our own town, Yathrib and we will spread the message of Islam there."

It was the effort of these people that led to the foundation and spread of Islam in Yathrib. The people there had heard of the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) and through the description and encouragement of these six, many accepted Islam. A short while later, twelve leaders from Yathrib headed to Mecca and pledged their commitment to Islam. They made an agreement with the Prophet (s.a.w.w.) offering full support in spreading his deen.

Meeting with these 12 people was not easy task for the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) due to the fact that he was under the constant supervision of the Kuffar (idol- worshippers). At that time, the city of Mecca was a place of fear and darkness for the Muslims. Thus, the Prophet (s.a.w.w.) decided to meet them outside the town at a place under the mountain called AQABA. The meeting took place after midnight to escape the notice of the enemy.

The First Pledge Of Aqaba

It was past the middle of the night when Asad Ibn Zararah and Ibadat Ibn Samat, with ten others, walked silently down the rough road to the agreed meeting place. They found the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) waiting with a few Muslims who had braved the dangerous journey from Mecca. This meeting was in held in total secrecy and their aim was to complete the business before sunrise so that the Muslims could return to the city without the knowledge of the Mushrikeen.

When the pact was agreed upon, the twelve representatives went back to Yathrib, and told the people: "We have taken an oath on the absolute belief in the Oneness of Allah (S.W.T.). We will not steal, kill our children or insult one another and perform good actions in obedience to Him and His Commands."

The Propagation Of Islam In Medina

As the days passed, the leaders wrote a letter to the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) requesting him to send a person who could teach them Islam and educate them about the Holy Qur'an. The Prophet (s.a.w.w.) sent them a man by the name of Mus'ab.

Mus'ab was a very good Qur'an reciter, with a melodious voice. He also gave excellent speeches. He made it his habit to stand on the outskirts of Yathrib (present day Medina) under the shade of a tree and begin reciting the Holy Qur'an. His voice would attract people who would gather around him and listen to his sweet tone. When he had a crowd around him, Mus'ab would begin his speech about Islam. By then, most of the crowd would be receptive and keen to hear what he had to say.

However, this made some leaders of Yathrib angry and finally one of them threatened to throw him out of Medina. He rushed up to him with his sword and shouted aloud: "Stop what you are doing and get out of our town!" Mus'ab did not let the anger of the man effect him and asked him to sit down and talk with him. He said, "Listen to what I have to say to you and if you find it is not acceptable, then I shall stop propagating and go back to where I came from."

The man replied, "You are right. Let me first listen to you and your invitation, then I will make my decision."

He put the sword aside, and Mus'ab began to recite ayats from the Holy Qur'an. The akhlaq and patience of the reciter, together with the beauty and wisdom of the verses woke the man's sleeping spirit. He asked Mus'ab to explain Islam to him and how he could embrace it. In reply to this, Mus'ab said: "It is very simple and easy. In order to become a Muslim, you need only bear witness that there is no God except Allah (S.W.T.) and Muhammad is His Messenger."

The Second Pledge Of Aqaba

Over the period of that year, the people of Medina slowly began to appreciate the teachings of Islam. By the time, the Hajj season dawned, they were anxious to go meet the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) himself and give their allegiance to him personally. Thus, when the pilgrims set out for the journey, 500 people headed to Mecca from Medina and from these 70 were Muslims.

Upon reaching Mecca, they arranged for a meeting with the Prophet (s.a.w.w.) similar to the one that had taken place the year before. The meeting was held on the night of 13th Dhul-Hajj behind a mountain near Mina.

After speaking to them and encouraging them to continue living their lives in the way of Islam. The Prophet (s.a.w.w.) then spoke of his interest in migrating to Medina. He told them that he wanted to set up the base of Islam there, if he had their support.

The people were delighted to hear this and immediately pledged their loyalty to him and Islam. They promised to protect him and uphold the Laws of Islam even if it cost them their lives. One of them stood up saying, "We are men of war and jehad. We have grown up in the war front and are ready to sacrifice our lives for your protection and in defense of Islam…"

These Muslims then silently signed an agreement with the Prophet (s.a.w.w.) and pledged themselves to him. All this was done in great secrecy, as they were afraid that the Mushrikeen might have sent a spy to watch their movements. By sunrise, everyone had dispersed, eager and hopeful of the success of their aims.

Unfortunately, the fears of the Muslims were realized and the Mushrikeen of Mecca found out about the meetings and the pledges. They also heard about the plan of the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) to establish his base in Medina where the people fully supported him. Knowing that this would strengthen Islam, the Mushrikeen decided to meet in Daarul-Nadwa and plan their next steps in dealing with this threat.

"Surely those who say: 'Our Lord is Allah!', then they continue on the right way, they shall have no fear nor shall they grieve" Sura Ahqaaf, Verse 12

A Holy Verse

SOMETHING TO THINK ABOUT ...

1. The Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) first met with six people from the tribe of Khazraj and explained Islam to them. His words and manners impressed them so much that they embraced Islam before going back to Yathrib.

2. After this, more people in Yathrib became Muslims and a group came back to Medina to pledge their allegiance to the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.). In the first pledge of Aqaba, the people made an oath that they would not steal, not perform bad actions and refrain from killing their children (a practice amongst the Jahil Arabs).

3. In the second agreement of Aqaba, 70 Muslims from Yathrib met with the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) and signed an agreement with him. They made a covenant that they would defend the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) and fight in defense of Islam even if it cost them their lives. This is what led to the migration of the Prophet of Islam to Medina some time later.

Think And Answer

1. When these six people from the tribe of Khazraj left Mecca, what did they say to the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.)?
2. What was the outcome of the efforts of this group?
3. Who was the person sent by the Prophet (s.a.w.w.) to Yathrib to teach Islam?
4. Describe the method of da'awah (invitation) used by this person.
5. Who met with the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) during the second pledge of Aqaba?
And what was the result of that pledge?

After learning of the meeting at Aqaba between the Prophet (s.a.w.w.) and the people of Yathrib, the Mushrikeen were very worried. They did not know exactly what had happened at the meeting and their fear led them to increase their tortures on the Muslims in Mecca.

When the Muslims saw this, they asked the Prophet (s.a.w.w.) to help them and to ease their suffering. The Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) asked them to be patient and told them that they would soon find a solution to their problems.

Muslims Migrate To Medina

The Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) ordered the Muslims to migrate towards Yathrib. He told them that they would receive great rewards for the patience they had shown in all their sufferings at the hands of the Kuffar and that Allah (S.W.T.) was extremely pleased with them. In placing their Trust in Him, they had performed the greatest worship and now Allah (S.W.T.) was providing a means for their salvation.

Can you imagine what the Muslims must have felt when they realized that they would have to leave their homes and properties and move to a strange town with no knowledge of how they were to live or earn any income there?

However, their Tawwakul was great and they relied totally on the promise of Allah (S.W.T.). Gradually, groups of Muslims started migrating towards Medina.

When the Mushrikeen realized that a large number of Muslims had already left Mecca they tightened their surveillance and made sure that there are no more were allowed to leave. The Muslims did not give up and made use of every opportunity to migrate. They would leave in the middle of the night, to escape while the Kuffar slept and then trek along the long and difficult paths. Many days later, with injured legs, tired bodies and burnt faces, they would reach Medina.

The Plan

When the Mushrikeen saw that their attempts to stop the Muslims migrating were not working, they met together and discussed the issue, wondering what to do about it. It worried them that the Islam would grow stronger with a firm base and that the Muslims would then attack them.

The Mushrikeen argued about the meeting at Aqaba and its importance. Many said that the base at Yathrib was growing stronger by the day and their main fear was that the Prophet (s.a.w.w.) would soon join them and find a supportive environment from which to spread Islam.

One of them stood up and suggested, " Why don't we find a man amongst us who is willing to kill Muhammad and then offer the Bani Hashim blood money for him. This should get rid of the problem and allow us to live in peace."

An old man who was sitting amongst them told him that the plan would never work. "The Bani Hashim will never accept the money and they will not rest until they identify, capture and execute the killer," he said. "Besides, who amongst you is willing to carry out this task?" The crowd was silent at this last question. They all knew that his words were true and that the Bani Hashim were a very powerful tribe not to played with.

"Well, then let us capture Muhammad and put him into prison," another one of the Kuffar said. "We will not let any one meet him and in this way, we can cut his connection with his people. With time they will forget his call and mission." The old man refuted this idea too. "Do you think the Bani Hashim will just keep quiet and let you imprison Muhammad? Even if you manage to capture him, they will fight you and free him."

A third person spoke up, "Let us catch Muhammad and banish him to a very far place from here. We can tie him to a camel and let the animal free in the desert. Muhammad will die in the desert and if another tribe finds him, he will not be able to come back."

Again the old man protested. "This is not a practical plan," he said to those gathered around. "Firstly, you will not be able to capture Muhammad so easily and secondly, if he is found by another tribe, they may become attracted to his words and accept his message thus giving him the strong base we are trying to prevent!"

By this time, the crowd was getting restless. "If you know so much, why don't you tell us what to do!" they cried.

The old man thought for a while and then he told them. "The best plan is if we choose one man from every tribe and send a group to the house of Muhammad at night. These men can catch him and kill him. The Bani Hashim will not be able to fight us all and will have no choice but to accept the blood money we offer and leave it at that."

The Mushrikeen discussed the plan, found it to be practical and accepted it. They swore to put it in action and set about making the arrangements for the murder. But, the Great Lord was aware of their plan and knew what they had plotted.

A Holy Verse

" And they planned and Allah (also) planned, and Allah is the best of planners." Sura Aale-Imran, Verse 54

SOMETHING TO THINK ABOUT ...

1. A group of Muslims migrated to Yathrib with the permission of the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) in order to be free from the torture they were facing in Mecca at the hands of the Mushrikeen. When the Mushrikeen realized that Muslims were firm in their decision, they became afraid that a strong base would be established in Medina and they would be attacked. For this reason they gathered and decided to kill the Messenger of God.

Think And Answer

1. When the Muslims asked the Prophet (s.a.w.w.) to find them a solution to their problems, what did he say?
2. What problems did the Muslims face in their migration to Medina?
3. What did the Mushrikeen think when they realized that the Muslims were determined to migrate to Medina?
4. The Kuffar had a meeting to discuss what issue? What decision did they make in this meeting?

Allah (S.W.T.) was aware of evil plans of the Kuffar. He revealed this plot to the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) and addressed him, saying, "You must leave this town immediately and secretly and proceed towards Yathrib. This migration will strengthen Islam and will release the Muslims from the oppression of the Mustakbirin (Oppressors)."

The Prophet (s.a.w.w.) thus prepared for his journey. He knew however, that his house was already under the watch of the enemy and that any suspicious movement could cause them to act faster than they had planned.The Mushrikeen were keeping such a close watch on the house that they even peeped through the window from time to time to ensure that the Prophet (s.a.w.w.) was still there.

The night of the migration, there were 40 men stationed outside his home when the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) called Imam Ali (a.s.) to him. He said to Ali (a.s.), "O Ali, will you assist me in implementing the order of Allah (S.W.T.)?"

Imam Ali (a.s.) asked him how he could do this and the Prophet (s.a.w.w.) explained, "There are about 40 men outside who want to attack kill me. My Lord has informed of their plans and ordered me to leave this town and migrate but if they see that my bed is empty, they will understand that I have left and follow me so that they can carry out their evil plan. I need someone to sleep on my bed so that when they look through the window, the

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