Friday Sermon 15 March 1996
But the deeds of those who disbelieve are like a mirage in a desert. Which the thirsty person imagines to be water, when he comes up to it he finds it to be nothing and finds Allah near him Who pays him his account in full and Allah is swift in reckoning. Or like thick darkness in a vast deep ocean rolling in uproar of wave upon wave with clouds above it: layers of darkness one upon another. When he holds out his hands he can scarcely see it: for one to whom Allah grants no light there is no light at all. ('The Holy Quran'. al-Nur [The Light]: 40, 41). In the previous sermon I had mentioned that both these verses relate to darkness. Albeit the first verse appears to speak of light while the second speaks of the darkness of the outer influences that deprive one of the visionary faculty of enlightenment. The second verse clearly mentions 3 types of darkness and the darkness of self mentioned in the first verse is not in fact a single darkness but as several verses of 'The Holy Quran' explain there are also many kinds of darkness of the ego: Know that the life of this world is only a game and a diversion and pomposity and a subject of boasting among yourselves, of rivalry in multiplying riches and children. Like the vegetation that sprouts up after the rain rejoicing the tillers. Then it dries up and thou seest it turning yellow; becoming broken pieces of stubble. And in the hereafter there is severe chastisement, as well as forgiveness and Allah's pleasure. And the life of this world is nothing but illusory pleasure. ('The Holy Quran'. al-Hadid [Iron]: 21). The darkness of the self is the sport and pastime, the display and the subject of mutual boasting and rivalries in multiplying wealth and children which if avoided can result in a life of forgiveness and Divine pleasure. On the contrary the life can be a cause of severe punishment. Whatever rises from the self appears charming. Most of the time one cannot decipher whether it is darkness or light. presently games and distractions are given great regard and the fundamental daily necessities of life are given less importance. Pursuit of sport and pastimes give rise to many types of crimes and one obsessed with sports and hobbies progressively becomes numb to the service of fellow beings day by day and when the yearning after sports and hobbies increases so that one cannot satisfy the urge it leads on to a state of insanity. When a hobby is excessively indulged it becomes madness and madness itself is a dark place. Like the violent reactions and crazy antics of some fans of the losing Teams in countries like India, Pakistan etc in the recent Cricket Tournament which are all [forms of] darkness and darkness is engulfing the world but cannot be observed. 'The Holy Quran' points out that as soon as one abandons measure it results in a natural state of darkness. Pleasurable pursuits of the world are permissible as long as they are kept under check so as not to override what is mandatory. However when the pleasures of sport and hobbies exceeds all bounds those same pleasures become a punishment. Adornment which relates to showing off and arrogant pride carries darkness with it. There is one fashion that one adopts because it pleases Allah the Almighty for a believer to be clean and hygienic and there is nothing dark about it because it is not born from the ego but out of one's relationship with Allah and it is a fashion that gives birth to forgiveness and [Divine] pleasure. However the fashion which is devoid of God-consciousness will always lead to display. I will explain تَكَاثُرٌ فِي الْأَمْوَالِ وَالْأَوْلَادِ ['rivalry in multiplying riches and children'] further in the next sermon. There are many types of darkness which need to be pointed out to show you that light will not enter as long as these evils remain. There is a light in place of every darkness. When that darkness is removed from the heart and light settles in its place comfortably then that light will not go back. Light is a grace. Darkness has no power of itself to enable it to overcome the light. However one who partakes of light on a small scale and partakes of a little bit of darkness will reveal from their attitude whether they are more worthy of light or if they prefer the evils of darkness. May Allah the Almighty cleanse and purify us from all forms of darkness and grant us the light which comes never intending to leave again. The text http://www.alislam.org/urdu/sermon/FST19960315-UR.pdf © The Tahir Archive / MTA International, 2015.
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