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Heart Soul – Episode 16
Channel: Lauren Booth
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Episode Transcript ©
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Welcome to heart and soul on Qf radio with me Lauren booth, your space to reflect. Today my guest is the founder of the Islamic Cultural Center in demand Saudi Arabia. He also designed and directed the Hajj program for the US military. It is Sherif Mohammed Al Acas. Welcome Chef walaikum.
In this episode, we're going to be looking closely at the Hajj. This is the annual pilgrimage made by millions of Muslims for the last 14 137 years in a specific format. And I am going to share with our listeners now, that Thanks be to God. When I was a new convert to Islam, I was able to go on Hajj as part of a group, and our guide was the share here listening to now. So a double Thanks be to God share, I'm glad to be with you. Just I enjoyed having a job you were very
devoted down and interested to learn everything about them.
It is a blessing that only Muslims get to do and indeed only Muslims to this day, get to go to the Kaaba. Now, there has been some controversy about this some idea that all religious sites should be open. Can you talk to us about the sacredness of al Qaeda was little first by Adam, please be with him. And then that was raised by Abraham Abram that that Abram and his son Ishmael, his son, Ishmael,
and it is a sacred place in the sense that all Muslims direct themselves away and face al Qaeda whenever they do Salah as a baby coming into Makkah is like having a passport. And the passport is being a Muslim. They conduct of there are millions of people are Muslims who come to America and the conduct of the people there may be taken as exemplars for the Muslims. Now a non Muslim is in Makkah and conducts him or herself in a manner that is not in line with Islam. And some
were not well informed Muslim coming from the farthest part of the world
watches that and considers that part of Islam, then it is marked
and covered and therefore only Muslims are allowed.
And this Hajj, this annual pilgrimage, take us back to how in its current form, it was put together explained I should say by the prophet Muhammad peace be upon him because there was a pilgrimage before Islam that was a part of the pilgrimage before Islam and when some refinements Salaam became also an Islam. You see, the idea is religion from the regimen that law prescribes a lot doctor only to God prescribed. Islam Islam start with nothing Muhammad Sallallahu ala by but it started with Adam instead of honey
and continued through a prime Abram and Ishmael Isaac. Now people call them religions, other names that is up to them. But the religion of Allah prescribed from the beginning of time is one at least in the basic and most important tenets of the religion and that is Islam to submit to the will of Allah. That's what the meaning of it
and so, Hi, what's the script? So it's done. And and because Abraham preached Islam all the time.
speech. And so coming to Mecca as because Abram was a part of all prophets, the father of all the prophets,
coming to Moscow was signaling their belonging to that religion of that being Islam. The Deen of Islam then is something that invites people now, every year, it's a demand. It's a pillar of faith, that we travel from around the world at least once in our lifetime, to visit el cobre in Saudi Arabia. And there are specific rituals we have to do. And I want to take us to the very beginning of that journey. If you're in London, or Lahore, if you're in Istanbul or Azerbaijan, you begin by stripping the basics the externals, and what I mean by this is a Haram, can you explain to our listeners, please, this process of stripping away your daily life, beginning with the clothing, like
like a circumference around the neck, beyond the voyage, anyone, anyone Muslim, male, or female must go into a state of Allah.
Now that I want to differentiate here between the state of Iran and the clothing of the state of Iran is the what you can or cannot do that when you are in a headlock, and the clothing is what you will put on or not.
they clothing is
the normal clothing, the normal Muslim clothing covering all
motives, not attractive, attractive to her
physical beauty, that that is the woman claiming for the man, a man is stripped into two pieces of clothing, one
wrapped around his waist like a skirt. And the other one is on the shoulder. And to a
surface. That's what the man puts on. When he goes into the state and into
one after wearing the gloves when he declares that he is going into the state of mind when you are in the state state. There are things that you cannot do yet. The idea is you there are things that are permissible normally, but when you go into the state of Iran,
for example, for example, shows example clipping your name,
cutting your hair, removing hair from the party,
killing a bird or a sheep
plucking a tree or a plant.
All of these are
even even a very disturbing.
form, it's a piece, you have to go out to total peace with yourself, the animals, the plants, the land, everything and everyone else. And also chef, is it Am I right in remembering that if you get angry, especially if you use a curse word, does that break this spiritual state of Iran? A few of you swear, you definitely break the state of Iran but it's what you at Mars. That award that you are expecting from heart is the discipline or on top of that matter is the discipline of self control. That must be exercised as much as possible, as humanly possible during a period.
So this is what is not seen when we see the crowds on news bulletins or on TV shows. You see noise and you don't know what it's for. And you see clothing and it seems a bit strange, but there is always a spiritual inner dimension. And along with what we wear is what we say from when you step on a planet from a certain point on the plane journey, train journey foot journey camel journey however you're getting to Hajj in Saudi Arabia, you will begin saying labby Kala harmala bake what is the dimension of this the translation and the inner dimension Allahumma barik
Alaa here I am I am responding to your call. I'm coming to you in response.
Your call for me to come here. And that is a beautiful submission, that acceptance that there is this subliminal call to all believers traveling down the ages from the divine calling us to this act and we repeat it again the baker lahoma lobby, and when you've got 10s of 1000s even half a million people saying this in a rhythm it takes you out of out of the everyday doesn't it show
about submission in hij islamize submission and hands
Visual you can visualize it, you can see it not only what is inside yourself inside your heart, but also what you see people for example, like we said with the error normally you can put on normal clothing. Now that is not allowed and that is the use of let me address in a manner that prescribes the thing in the basic piece of pieces of cloth.
Your you can you can shave your hair and
collected nails, but not when you are and you can you can
an animal slaughter an animal
so many you cannot you you control yourself as somebody picks you puts you around because of the cloud, you state you try to be in a motor house do not push anybody.
Yes should be peaceful, isn't it just a piece of piece
of cement that shows in every direction?
spiritually no in your app.
We're going to take a short break now when we'll be listening to lab bake by Zane beaker. We will come back with more about the Hutch
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Lebesgue Allah Humala baga
bakerella Sherry Calacanis.
luxury cannot debate Allah Humala, baby
bakerella Sherry Calacanis
de la vache Allah Humala Bay
bakerella Sherry Kanika
lucky one more
bake, Humala Baker Baker
Baker lashari Calacanis
la vache Allah Humala Bay,
Baker nashiri Kanaka
bake, Humala, Baker Baker
bake, Humala, Baker Baker
you're listening to heart and soul on Qatar foundation radio with me Lauren booth, sharing his gems of knowledge with us today is Chef Mohammed Al Acas and we're talking about hedge
Shall we went into some of the physical aspects the noises we make with saying law bake with changing our clothing and physically, there are certain things we can't do in order to enter a realm of peace. Once the Hadji or the pilgrim arrives in Mecca, what are the expectations of the Act that begin, you mean the rituals, the rituals, the first thing, what not before I go to the rituals, let me just say something about one has is supposed to happen, because that is understood by some people had is supposed to happen in one's life. As soon as a person a Muslim, or a Muslim man is able physically and financially to perform hide. Some people think that they want to push hard.
Last when they are old, and when they are, you know, finished with Julia No, has to be performed, as soon as one is able financially and physically. And for a woman, she also has
a long, that's a very important note that is very important to to Muslims to know, it's not a holiday vacation. It's not I'll do it next year after the kids schooling has been paid, if you have any, and it's expensive. Now, unfortunately, this is a sad, practical truth that a millions around the world can no longer afford to go on Hajj. However, there are concessions made I believe, because you do see people from villages and towns and rustic areas around the world. And you know what they do, they sleep on the streets, just to be close to Allah subhanho wa Taala, to be close to perform their rituals to complete it. Some of them, some of these poor people, they are doing this once in a
lifetime pilgrimage for their grandparents, their parents, they've promised to do it for their whole village and the whole village has saved and that believe me is so moving, isn't it? Sure.
One, indeed. And then fast we will come we will come to this in a while. But you and I, if you remember had to sleep on the ground.
So as not to only see people sleeping on the on the street, we ourselves slipped on the ground.
So important, so important all in one, move one one status.
People may not
know, if we may be short on time check, I will I just want to say that what's beautiful is to put us all in the frame of mind, we are just human beings, we are equal in our search for piety, and God only judges us on the levels of piety we are hudge we have to sleep on the ground. And how do we go through hardships. It's not meant to be easy. People who go seeking Oh, it's going to be an easy hedge, we should be seeking some sort of
duty Shouldn't we should,
we should we should experience the hardship that others do that I do. And more frequently than
it is a reminder. It should it should remind us how others feel and
suffer is to put this in one vote.
There is the day and
is also showing us in that huge cloud, whether you are Western or Eastern black or white, rich or poor, tall or short, little or big, small or
all are equal. Whether you are
a king or a slave, it doesn't matter. We are all like you said, are human beings, basically human beings in need of our lives.
I remember the day of Erica, on my hedge. It's known as the cleansing of the soul. It is a pivotal day in a Muslims life. And I didn't know what to expect. I'd been Muslim for a year I was in a tent on the edge of a mound of us that was once a mountain but has been trampled down. And I sat and I said to God, forgive me. And then came the tears from the very depths of the deep, deep, deepest
Part of my heart, they just came flooding in regret for all that I had done every piece of ignorance of harm, stupidity, selfishness, and above all the years of ignoring God. And I cried, and I thought, you know, I could imagine filling a bucket with these tears. And it is quite something to sit there. I remember saying to you, Chef, this is the place where Ibrahim the Prophet Abraham, was, I'm going to let you tell this actually, Chef, please talk about mount of arafat, and the interaction between the Prophet Abraham and God, please. The thing is every every
Muslim, you know, that's famous today, like like
Muhammad Ali, and the others when they stood on that mount mount arafat. And they look at look at everybody, and they look they realize how equal people are in front of Allah.
Abraham Alayhi Salam came, and total surrender to Allah subhanho wa Taala a surrender, completely asking for help and forgiveness and to challenge the challenge that, that submission to make sure
that it is through submission, a lot of them too sloppy of his own, and he submits and is about to slow, immediately after the morning and only arrived demeanor, and he is ready to slaughter himself.
And then he is substituted by a big sheet. But Satan, in Titans are grinding three times saying are you that that cannot be true, that this is only a three a false dream and a brand new
as a time to go away, and to get to insist on obey Allah and although that the the older kids when as a dream, but the dream of a prophet
and as as like a
study inspiration, not anymore, but like any one of us.
So blind even submits completely and as opposed to slaughter the one and only one at that time. And then the sacrifice by by
sheep, identify him as sinful to Allah who says, who
recognizes the submission of Rahim and consider him to be one of the evangelists Muslim, because he did not question what Allah wants from him. He submitted. Is it also right that Abraham stood on the Mount of arafat? And God said to him, make the call to prayer. And Abraham, Allah be pleased with him, looked and said, but there's no people. And God said, Make the call and I will bring the people. Right. And Brahim wants us to to call the people to Hajj and we Yes, he said, but nobody's around. He said call and I'll make it
by them. So now you're looking at Muslims, maybe even harder than Muslims. There is a deep desire, a hidden desire
of each and every one Muslim, to want to go to visit our Kaaba. It is a very powerful experience. And on the day of arafat, I remember looking at the mount and thinking this is prophecy being fulfilled. Thank you so much, Sheikh Mohammed for joining us today. Assalamu alaikum alaikum Allah has been a wonderful singer, the producer for this series is a haberdasher.