Summary of Maulana Shaykh Nazim’s Daily Suhbah
1st February 2010, Monday
Each moment, He is giving us a new gift
A’uzubillah himinsh shaitan nirrajeem
Bismillahir Rahman-nir Raheem
Assalamu’alaikum wrh wbkt
- Maulana says that each day, we see the Sun rise and set, yet we are oblivious to the fact that each rising of the Sun heralds a new set of gifts from Allah – benefits, pleasures and satisfaction. Allah sends new gifts daily, both day and night, for it is human nature to like to experience new things, for all that is new, is enjoyable. Allah the Almighty knows the intricate needs of His creation, and he is constantly sending His gifts on the creation, in order to fulfill these spoken and unspoken needs. Praise be to Allah!
- So each human is being sent gifts, both physical and spiritual gifts, according to his needs, of which nothing is hidden from the perfect knowledge of Allah Almighty. For example, look at how a boa constrictor eats. It merely swallows the entire calf alive, and there is little taste or pleasure in that experience. Compare that with how Man eats. Our food is cooked in a variety of succulent ways, and we eat in small mouthfuls (unlike the boa), and we take enjoyment and pleasure in munching and tasting every morsel of food. Look at how Allah has honoured Man over the rest of creation, look at how Allah is so Kind and Merciful, giving pleasure and satisfaction to us, for with every bite, with every munch, with every sip, He gives numerous tastes – sweet, sour, bitter and salty. Allah gives and gives, He is Al-Kareem, He gives endlessly and generously, syukurlillah, syukur Ya Rabb. So savour every bite and gulp, they are gifts of Allah to you.
- However, there is more to it than simply giving Man pleasure with food. All the pleasures of this world, are imitated pleasures. They are limited pleasures that are actually meant to show Man, what endless pleasures lie in store for them in akherat, so that they would be even more thankful to Allah, and so that they would strive to seek akherat, and to seek closeness to Allah. In other words, these worldly pleasures, are a sneak preview of what true pleasures lie ahead for us in akherat.
- Maulana cites an example to explain this. Imagine a chef whipping up a delicious meal in the kitchen. Before serving it, he takes a tiny pinch of the dish, to taste it, just to make sure that it tastes right, before serving it. Once he is satisfied that it is perfect, the chef then serves the customer, who tucks into the meal, thoroughly enjoying himself. Maulana says that the tiny drop that the chef had put on his tongue, is the pleasure of this worldly life, and the entire dish taken by the customer, is the pleasure of the hereafter.
- So the pleasure of this worldly life, is supposed to whet man’s appetite for the life of akherat and for Man to witness the Kindness, Generosity and Mercy of their Lord. But instead of doing so, Man, after tasting this worldly pleasure, becomes drunk in it, and forgets the pleasure of the hereafter, and seeks the pleasures of this dunia, day and night. It is ironic, as these pleasures are supposed to open our hearts and eyes to akherat, and to our Lord’s Mercy, but instead it has blinded many and made them obsessed with this worldly pleasure. It is like a chef, who yearns for that next taste of a tiny pinch of food, whereas an entire dish, a true gastronomic delight, awaits him, once he has ended his work.
- Look at how Man seeks different foods for breakfast, lunch and dinner (and sometimes supper). We yearn for different food types, each day, getting bored if the same food is served on consecutive days. Allah knows our needs, and has provided Man with a staggering array of food choices, recipes, methods of preparations and tastes. Enjoy His gifts, but do not forget to thank Him, and do not forget that these represent only the tip-of-the-iceberg, for much more awaits Man in the hereafter if he is obedient.
- Similarly, there is a staggering array of spiritual food, made up of contemplation, knowledge, and practices (zikir, Qur’an recital, solat etc) that our soul yearns for day and night, so do not just fulfill the bodily needs as animals do, seek the spiritual food that distinguishes Man from animals.
- Each day, Allah showers us with endless gifts, so that His servants are happy, contented and well-pleased with their Lord! The pleasures of today are not like that of yesterday’s, and the pleasures of tomorrow are different from today’s! So be pleased, be thankful to Allah for each moment that you are alive, for each of that moment is filled with physical and spiritual gifts. As in the Ayat below, each day, Allah is arranging the affairs of all creation, renewing our gifts and pleasures each moment.
Whosoever is in the heavens and on earth begs of Him (its needs from Him). Everyday He is (engaged) in some affair (arranging the moment-to-moment gifts for His creation)! (Surah Ar-Rahman 55:29)
- Yet Allah Himself, is a being that is unchanged at all times, He has been the same from preeternity till eternity. Allah doesn’t change, for a being that is perfect, will neither improve nor deprove. For example, if we say that Allah is richer today, than He was yesterday, it means that He was poorer yesterday, as compared to today. It is impossible that Allah is ever poor, hence He is always the Most Rich, from pre-eternity, to eternity, His Richness doesn’t increase or decrease. Allah is unchanged, for He is Most Perfect and is in need of none, it is the creation who is changing daily, and who is continuously in need of Him.
- How Man accepts and uses these pleasures will determine what sort of creature he is in Divine Judgement. He can be a creature of Light or Darkness, depending on whether he is a grateful servant or not, so each moment, the responsibility lies on yourselves, to accept these gifts with thankfulness and understanding, so that you will be clad in happiness, or to be ungrateful and blind to the meanings of these gifts, in which case, you will be clad in unhappiness. Hence in each priceless moment of your life, you are given an opportunity to attain both worldly and eternal pleasure, satisfaction, enjoyment, happiness, understanding and enlightenment. So don’t let that moment pass, without benefiting, for that is a great loss!
By (the Token of) time (through the Ages), Verily Man is in loss, (Surah Al-Asr 103:1-2)