Allah the Almighty said: “Glorified be He who carried His servant by night from Al-Masjid al-Haram (the Inviolable Place of Worship) to Al-Masjid al-Aqsa (the Far Distant Place of Worship), the neighborhood whereof We have blessed, that We might show him of our token! Lo! He is the Hearer, the Seer.”(Al-Isra’:1)
I’ve been struggling to pen down my thoughts lately. Several events have invaded my usual writing pace. Some of them have been great; like connecting and establishing new acquaintances with some wonderful individuals, celebrating (in some small ways) the King’s installation of the Ahli Mangku Negara award, and officially running some events for the newly founded think tank ISSI. Some invasions have been exciting yet time consuming like my routine (but Alhamdulillah increasing) legal work at Messrs. Azril & Associates, preparing for the new baby, and planning summer trips to Cairo and Jordan later this month to deliver talks to Malaysian students on some legal issues. Some other events have been down right difficult like some emotionally draining situations that we went through with our family.
As a result I have found myself feeling somewhat introverted; not wanting to share my thoughts and feelings and therefore not wanting to write. I didn’t know how to articulate and process it all so I just remained silent so as not to be misunderstood in my communication. There were times when I felt a little weary from doing all of the things that I love. Such is the nature of life I think. I pray for Allah’s guidance and blessings.
The month of Rajab has just ended and we are now in the month of Syaaban. I’ve had several opportunities to reflect upon the miracle of Prophet Muhammad‘s (Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him) journey – as a matter of fact – many aspects of the lectures on the journey really spoke to my heart and where I am right now as a leader. Our dearest teacher Shaykh Muhammad Fuad Al Maliki in his usual dynamic style explained the words of Allah the Almighty articulately and with authority, proclaiming lessons and good news from the miraculous journey. The occasion of Isra’ and Mi’raj is indeed a reminder of our pledge and commitment to fulfill our responsibility towards Allah (SWT). It is a reminder that establishment of the five daily prayers as well as all other responsibilities are a must on every Muslim.
Prophet Muhammad’s (Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him) closest companion, Abu Bakar AsSiddiq (r.a) was supporting him upon the Prophet’s return from the isra’ and mi’raj to the city of Makkah. Scholars said the Prophet’s journey took about one-third of the night, i.e., his journey from Makkah to Jerusalem, then to the heavens and what is above them, and then back to Makkah the next day the Prophet told the people what happened to him the previous night. The blasphemers belied the Prophet and mocked him, saying, “We need a month to get there and back, and you are claiming to have done all this in one night?” They said to Abu Bakr, “Look at what your companion is saying. He says he went to Jerusalem and came back in one night.” Abu Bakr told them, “If he said that, then he is truthful. I believe him concerning the news of the heavens – that an angel descends to him from the heavens. How could I not believe he went to Jerusalem and came back in a short period of time – when these are on earth?” At that, the Companion, Abu Bakr, was called “as-Siddiq” – because of how strongly he believed in all what the Prophet said.
Abu Bakr (r.a) is a refreshing reminder to me today that Allah’s words are sustaining. Allah the Almighty steps into our lonely, weary and broken places to provide comfort and healing at the same time. It’s through having true scholars and true companions; like Abu Bakr (r.a) to the Prophet Muhammad (Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him) on your journey that you are reminded of Allah’s presence in our lives. And I am indeed grateful to Allah that He has blessed me with the opportunity to meet with scholars and companions who often remind me of Allah the Almighty.
Indeed, when the scholars and our companions speak the truth, that they so earnest believe to others, they not only heal themselves, but they especially also comfort people like us.