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The Best In Islam #26

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Bilal Philips

Channel: Bilal Philips

Series:

Episode Notes

Islamic Practices [2 of 2]

Episode Transcript

© No part of this transcript may be copied or referenced or transmitted in any way whatsoever. Transcripts are auto-generated and thus will be be inaccurate. We are working on a system to allow volunteers to edit transcripts in a controlled system.


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Salam alaykum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh. I'd like to welcome your dear viewers to another in our series, the best in Islam.

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In this episode, we'll be looking at the best of Islam. Continuing from our previous episode with two other statements from Prophet Muhammad, may God's peace and blessings be upon him, the first of which he said, as Narrated by Abu Huraira piatto come, Phil J. Lee, Helia criado, comb filter Islam, either Falco who the best of you, in the time of ignorance will be the best of you in Islam. If you become learned in the religion, this statement of the prophet that God's blessing be upon him,

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gives credence or gives recognition to what precedes Islam, a person coming into Islam, that if there were good qualities which they had, which made them people of influence, people of wisdom, people of knowledge, etc, then the likelihood, after they accept Islam, they will also be great people in Islam, if they're a great before. Because Islam is not detached from life. What existed before the acceptance of Islam, because life, what exists after is life. They're both interrelated only after Islam, life is now looked at from another pair of glasses, we have the Islamic view, but it's still life. So leadership, people who had leadership qualities, before Islam, maybe they even

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got training, they got

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degrees, etc, qualifications, etc. When they enter into Islam, these degrees, these qualifications, this knowledge becomes applicable in Islam also. So we should never discount and feel simply because a person has converted to Islam. Nothing before that is of any value, no sins that went before, they are not held accountable for they're free from that. But

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in terms of their

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abilities, their skills, their behavior,

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all of the various characteristics, and qualities which we hold of great value in human life. If they had these qualities before Islam, then Islam doesn't cancel them. There is a place for them within the parameter of Islam. However, they are modified, supported in different ways, etc.

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So those people who had good qualities when we're giving Dawa, we're encouraging people to accept Islam, we should try to choose some of the people who are of influence people with skills which the OMA Muslim community can benefit from, we should always try to include these people in our invitation. It may be more difficult because there are people who have positioned already, but we should not exclude them and only focus on the common people. And I'm not saying to focus on them and leave the common people either. But we have to recognize that if we find among them, people who have an inclination, we should make great efforts to try to bring them over because the Muslim community

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will benefit from them. Of course, people take this in a different light in that they may give great support

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it to people who are just stars, there were football players, basketball players,

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others who had fame, because of skills they had, which are not necessarily beneficial. So sometimes

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we misunderstand this principle of those who are great before Islam being great in Islam, to apply to the stars. So when you hear about a movie star accepts Islam, people are, you know, make a big thing about it, and maybe put this person in a position where they're speaking on Islam, and all they will start asking them factoids, and of course, they may talk nonsense, no, but this is not what is meant, the best of you before Islam, meaning good people, beneficial to society, people respected them because of that, when they become Muslims, those qualities should be supported, and they should be encouraged to continue to play this role. So this is the concept, you know that the

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good before Islam has value in Islam, we don't cancel it, we don't ignore it. In fact, we should nurture it. And when the Prophet may God's peace and blessings be upon him, when Muslims were in a particularly difficult period, he made dua, asking a lot to strengthen Islam, by some of the leading young, strong figures. And Allah brought Hamza, he brought on whatever no hubbub, no to Islam, and that gave Muslims strength. So those who are great before Islam, in their fields, fields which are beneficial to society, we should encourage them, reach out to them, to try to bring them also into Islam by providing them the necessary knowledge that they can make that choice. But the Prophet

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Muhammad SAW Salam added the condition, if they become learned, if they become learned, because a person might be a member, there was a case of one individual, very famous individual in the French context. He was a translator of the book, Das Kapital translation of this is communist theory, socialist theory, translated into French and he was a philosopher. He accepted Islam, and very much supporter of Islam, etc. But people put him in a position where he, after giving lectures, generally speaking about, you know, before Islam and what Islam had done in his life, and so on, so then, you know, people started to ask him questions concerning Tafseer of the Quran interpretation. And

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because of his background of being a philosopher, philosopher doesn't shy away from questions. So any questions asked him if he doesn't have knowledge, he will speak. Sorry, he said things naturally, because he didn't have the knowledge. He's going to say things which were wrong. He made some big blunders. And people still continue to put him up on stage and ask him questions from questions from, you know, areas that he had no knowledge of, and he would speak. And so it just piled up and piled up till finally people just washed their hands on him, because he had made so many crazy outlandish statements. So those people who come over to Islam, having these exceptional

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backgrounds, we should encourage them, to learn Islam, to gain the knowledge of Islam so that their benefit will be substantial to the Muslim community, they can then use the skills and the experience such that they have use it effectively to benefit the community when they have the guidance of Islam along with it. So this is the point that we have to keep in mind that people from the pre Islamic time where they accept Islam, we benefit we should strive to benefit from what they have, but we should encourage them to gain knowledge of Islam so that they can now convey that information to us in a practical and use

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full way away, which would be in keeping with Islamic teachings and not at odds with Islamic teachings. So they become, you know,

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individuals known for making unacceptable statements concerning Islam. We're going to take a break now and will continue after the break to look at the last narration from the Prophet may God's blessing be upon him regarding the best of Islam, so I'll see you after the break salaam aleikum wa rahmatullah?

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Welcome back from the break Salam aleikum wa rahmatullah wa barakato.

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Prior to the break, we were looking at those who were great before Islam, how they can also be great in Islam, if they gain knowledge

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of the life and armor. He quoted, the Prophet Muhammad SAW Salam as saying, when he was asked, I you'll Islami higher, which aspect of Islam is best. He said to me, Tom, will Takara was salam, ala man modifed, woman, lamb tarrif, that you provide food and greed, both those you know, and those you do not know, providing food, meaning that you share your food with others. There are so many statements from the Prophet may God's peace and blessing be upon him, in which he has stressed the importance of sharing food, that food for two should be good for for food for four should be good for eight. No, never think that the amount of food you have as well, I just made enough for two

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people know where people can share that food. So Muslims were encouraged from the very beginning of Islam to share. And this became a quality of Muslims that you find all over the world. Muslims share their food, living in the West, coming from the west, you know, the attitude is quite different. If somebody's invited over to your house, you're having dinner, then you close those doors in which the dining room is and then they sit in the living room, you go and you talk to them. You don't invite them to come and share your food with you. That's like nobody does that. No, it's something strange. But Islamic way. And this is something I found, you know, having become a Muslim myself, and being

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amongst Muslims, this way of inviting people, you know, and one of the things I should mention, with regards to this, this habit of sharing food and sharing what you have, I remember, during the time after the first Gulf War, when I was involved, I was head of a committee that was engaged in explaining Islam to the American troops before leaving the country. And among them, quite a number of them accepted Islam, about 3000 plus. And I remember some of them saying, talking about how they would be out on maneuvers with all their gear and everything walking in the desert. And they would come across a Bedouin there with his tent. And he would call them over.

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They would come over, you know, wondering what's going on? Is there something I have to be careful?

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Okay, nothing's the desert, you know, nothing else there. deserts of Arabia, they will come and they sit down the teller down, then he would heat up tea and he would pass out teach them. Now they're all geared up and gladly would find room to pick up the cup and drinking with

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and

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whatever he had, he would share with them some bread, whatever, you know, he has limited supplies, etc. is living on the desert. It struck them, you know, how generous people were with what little they had. And I know a number of them, who accepted Islam just simply because of that, that had touched them it and move them in such a way, you know, because, as I said, in Western society, people are very much you know, cut off closed. Your neighbor, the idea of inviting over your neighbor, you know, to share in food with you. It's not a common practice. You know, it's we're in some communities. Amy do find it

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But in general, no. I mean, you're living in an apartment building, maybe the people on your right and your left you have never met them. And oftentimes, you even have people who are living alone in their apartment, they die in the apartment. Nobody knows until the smell comes out from under the door. Finally, they call the fire department, they come breaking the door and the ticker with around the body. People cut off this issue of sharing, because food, this is a basis for sharing with the community, you're building your relationships with the community. So this is something I encouraged strongly in Islam, as the Prophet Mohammed said, to provide food for others, sharing it with others.

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And same thing. In the other hand, when we slaughter the animal, giving thanks to Allah, we share that food with others all the time, the end of Ramadan, fasted the whole month of Ramadan, again, we share food, we encourage people give them food, you know, the idea of sharing all the time, we find that stressed in Islam.

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The other factor

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was to greet those you know, and those who you don't know,

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of course, the issue of greeting, no, constantly greeting Salam, Alikum walaikum salam, this is an obligation in Islam. If somebody greets you that you return, that greeting is an obligation. So the idea of greeting is a strongly recommended principle. And this brings good feelings. If you're meeting people, you don't greet them, you just pass by you ignore them or whatever, you know, this is part of the coldness that tends to come. In city life, people will live out in the farms, then where you're not in contact with that many people. When you see a person naturally you're going to Greek.

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Because you don't see people that often. So people tend to be more friendly. When you step outside of the cities. But inside of the city, you find people

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not greet others not know who their neighbors are, you know, they don't encourage it is something not encouraged at all. And if you greet people find it strange, you know, and so it's very uncomfortable. Whereas in Islam, whether you're in the city, whether you're in the country, people greet, we greet each other all the time. And the same, some Westerners I know have have said to me, you know, let's these people they greeting each other continually is the man, the man just left the room, you know, he came into our office, he greeted, he stepped out went somewhere as he came back in, he greeted again. And every time is greeting over and over. So this is culture. This is Islamic

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culture, that the continual greeting, because this greeting is what actually when we say Salaam Alaikum. This is more than just saying hi. So every time you see the person the height, of course, if you said hi to the person in the morning, no, you stepped out of the office, you come back in again. Hi again. No, that's not appropriate. You don't say hi again. Hello again. You already said hello, one time finish. Whereas Salam aleikum is different. Salaam Alaikum is a dua it is a prayer. You know, we are asking that our laws of Peace be upon you, that you find peace in your life from God. So this is a good prayer, a good reminder, a good reaching. So from the Islamic perspective, we

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will do it frequently. The Prophet SAW Salem did say that spread the greetings all around. Then the Prophet added in the end, not only just those who greet, but he said, Those who greet the ones they know and the ones they don't know.

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Now greeting people who you know, this is the common thing.

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Most people readily great, but somebody you don't know, maybe all written. I mean, actually I've even seen circumstances where a person may come in, and they will give greetings to 123. And then there are other people here. They don't give greetings to them. But this is really not from Islam.

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This proper Islamic way is you give greetings to those you know, and it's much greater and reward for you to give greetings to those who don't know, this is a very important point. Because this helps to build love in the community. When you make a point of greeting those you don't know, knowing that the reward is far greater than just greeting those who you know. So Islam has a concern for

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societal bonds, that people should be

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in contact with others, sharing the good they have greeting them regularly, you know, so it is a living community, not dead objects, which collide with each other. No, we are living, interacting in a positive, and a loving way, supporting each other. So, the idea of not knowing your neighbor of living 1015 20 years without ever having even met your neighbor, it's something unthinkable in the Muslim world. And that's the way it should be. We all should know who our neighbors are, who work in the office with us, people who are friends of our families, our parents, all these people, we take time out to meet to know to breed all of these people, because that is the bond which ties the

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community together. So when people have a need, we know that need, we can reach out and help them. We don't have to wait for them to come and beg us ask us, we are there. And even our daily prayers, which are obligatory on men to pray in the mosque, or strongly recommended for them to pray in the mosque together. That is about also the bonds of the community of that mosque that everybody knows not only your neighbor, but everybody in that area who comes and prays together, they're you know them. So when you see after prayer that the person is sitting, you know, then you go find out everything, okay? You're having problems. So this is the means of also building community, bonds,

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linking people together, where we have a society where love is spread amongst the members of the society. And this is what Islam engenders, and promotes and this is what the prophet may God's peace and blessings be upon him. He said when he responded to the question, What aspect of Islam is best? It was sharing our food with others, with as many others as we can. The poor, the rich, everybody sharing our food, and greeting everyone, those who we know, as well as those who we don't know. With that, dear viewers, we'd like to thank you for being with us in the second segment of our episode from the best in Islam, and we hope that you will continue to follow this series as it unfolds

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throughout the year.

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And I will bid you farewell and hope to see you in the next episode. Salaam Alaikum Warahmatullahi wabarakatuh