Eid-ul-Fitr is one of the only two annual festivals recognised by the Shari’ah. Due to the current circumstances, Eid al-Fitr 2020 is going to be celebrated in lockdown, which may seem contrary to the spirit of Eid. However, this is not entirely the case. We can still keep the spirit of Eid alive!
Perhaps ‘love of knowledge’ is the most comprehensive description that characterises all truly successful people who seek it. This attribute —if planted within the heart of a student and allowed to take rest and settle —would cause the many obstacles he faces such as: disinterest, lack of time, different distractions and interruptions, etc — to crumble. For all of these issues stem from the same root, and it is the lack of true love of knowledge.
The following is a translation of a lecture delivered in Urdu by Shaykh al-Islam Mufti Muhammad Taqi Usmani (hafizahullah) on Friday 18th December 2015 in Karachi, Pakistan. Translated by Mufti Muhammad ibn Adam
I am sharing this story because firstly, I know how lonely it is for those suffering from mental illness and how comforting it is for us to hear from others who have had similar experiences. Secondly, I’ve learned a lot from the past 4 years that I think will be useful for those who have just started experiencing symptoms. Thirdly, understanding mental illness from a theoretical perspective doesn’t do justice to what people suffering from it feel, especially when we consider how the suffering is invisible on the outside. The list of symptoms for these illnesses can often sound generic or trivial, but the person suffering from it distinctively knows that something is tangibly wrong with them. Lastly, I want to emphasize how much we Muslims need to take mental illness seriously, not just in confronting the stigma, but in approaching diagnosis, treatment, management and prevention as seriously as we would do any other health issue we encounter in our own lives.
The following is merely intended as food for thought for students of sacred knowledge (tullab al-ilm), teachers and those in charge of madrasas/Dar al-Ulums. It is not to undermine the services (khidma) carried out by madrasas and we are thankful to Allah for being able to even do this much, given the times we are living in. However, it is never a bad thing to introspect and analyse where improvements can be made.
Learning anything is always a long-term commitment, especially, when it comes to learning about Islam. People in the past even after studying years under experts would be heard saying they don’t know to certain, on occasions.
Allah (ﷻ) has blessed us with ‘aql above the animals, who merely act according to their desires. At the same time however, ‘aql is not boundless and all-powerful. If we were to look at the verses of the Qur’an closely, it’s clear that its recipients (ie prophets) and its targets (ie humankind) are rational human beings, who are supposed to have the capacity to understand, interpret, and accept the message sent to them.