From Darkness towards Light A Complicated Journey
Channel: Nouman Ali Khan
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today's Hoba is going to be about, you may have guessed the conclusion of the month of Ramadan. And just some things that I think need to be highlighted for all of us to be in the right kind of mindset. I think we're used to hearing about making the most of this time and not getting lazy and not allowing the exhaustion from the first few weeks of Ramadan to allow us to waste these few precious moments that we have left and to really make the most of them. We're going to try to take a couple of further steps today and get myself I want to give myself and I get one and give all of you also kind of a reality check about the merits of Ramadan and what we should be really thinking
about. So it's I want to start from the commonplace. I think many of you have already heard many times, several narrations about the benefits and the merits of Ramadan. For example, if somebody prays in Ramadan and fast in Ramadan, you know Iman and YT seven Hoefler the whole matter can be that they they pray and they they fast with faith, and they're mindful, and they watch themselves and all of their previous sins are going to get forgiven. So the concept, the first concept that I want to try and clarify in this codebook, for myself, and for all of you is actually the concept of forgiveness in Ramadan. This first and foremost, there are some things that even early scholars and
Muslims have agreed on when it comes to these ayat. And that is that there's a principle in the Quran in Al Hasan that you'll have a say good deeds, they get rid of bad deeds. That's something Allah has revealed himself good deeds, get rid of bad deeds. So if I've done some I've missed some prayers. Or I, you know, I forgot to do some, some vicar or had some some fault in my Bible do or there was something wrong in my worship to Allah in some way. Like Allah obligates me to certain things, and I wasn't able to keep up with it, or certain things Allah made haram for me, and I didn't keep up with that. And I fell short of the expectation Allah has from me, so I sinned against
Allah in some way. Those small deeds are small mistakes, they pile up, they can add up right and every one of our good deeds, they get rid of that pile. They took from prayer to prayer from the Lord to answer. Maybe I made some mistakes along the way. And I have faults with a lie along the way. And by the time I pray the answer prayer, it's getting rid of some of those smaller sins that I've done. So Ramadan is the ultimate time to get rid of
The yours pile, there's so much piled up. And now there's a there's an opportunity Allah has given us the entire hours that you're fasting, every second of that is worship. Like, think about that when you when you're praying, there's a few minutes that you're standing into prayer and sitting and doing sujood. Those are a few minutes of worship. But fasting is from the time the fast started till the time, the fast ended, whether whether you were working, or you were sleeping, or you were studying, or you were just talking, or cooking, whatever you were doing, that was still worship, it was 100%, every one of those seconds was a good deed. And every one of those seconds was getting rid
of something from my record that could be held against me on Judgement Day. So that's actually one of the most profound things about this month is that the amount of good deed that Allah by His fever has given us is remarkable. But at the same time, there are some important disclaimers, you know, like when you sign a contract, there's fine print underneath, right, and a lot of people who don't pay attention to the fine print, if I just say, all my previous sins are going to be forgiven, that's a problem. So I'm gonna give you a scenario and I'm not saying this is your scenario, but a scenario. Let's just say there's a son, and he's extremely disrespectful to his father. Right. He
talks back to his father yells at his father doesn't doesn't acknowledge his father, right? And is ungrateful to him and raises his voice at a more dismisses him or doesn't return his calls, whatever he does, okay? Now, this is something that's not just a crime against Allah, because Allah says what will validate the Sunnah. It's also a crime against that Father. Now, this son decides that he's going to fast in Ramadan, he's going to do tahajjud every night, he's going to recite more Quran than ever before. He's going to cry to Allah and the prayer and do of God and do DUA and all of it. He's even going to get save some money up and go do aamra In the last 10 nights of Ramadan, and he's
doing a kick off at the haram. This is pretty amazing, bonus rounds of good deeds, but he still doesn't return his dad's calls. He doesn't he doesn't respond back to him. He's still disrespectful to his father. Right? And in his mind, that's okay, because I'm doing so much good over here. That is one problem. Oh, Allah knows. It's okay. It'll get covered. No, it won't. That is not what this religion teaches. That is a very common misconception. The same way, somebody borrowed money, and they have the money to pay it back. They didn't want to pay it back. They decided, hey, don't call me again, don't harass me, I'm not gonna pay you the rent no matter what, get a lawyer. And the guy
is not paying his rent. But that same guy who's not paying his rent as at the masjid every day, he's called all the taraweeh every key, he did the air to cover it all the worst of all, the fact that you still not paying his rent to the landlord, even though you can.
And in his mind, that's okay. Because I'm doing these good deeds. So it's gonna get rid of that bad deed. No, in our religion, when I do something wrong to another human being, then I'm responsible to that human being, at least in two ways.
I have one, I have to fix it, which Allah calls is law hadn't been a nurse, right? Or he mentions the word of Slacko multiple times in the Quran. Okay, and it's law has one, you created a problem. Now you're going to fix the problem. Part of I can't sincerely ask Allah for forgiveness. If I'm not even sorry for my crimes. I can't do that. So now I have to go and apologize, or I have to not apologize. That's the second thing, I have to fix the problem. If I didn't pay the rent, I better go pay the rent.
I better go do that. If I haven't been respectful to my dad, I better start being respectful. I, it doesn't solve the previous problem. But at least I fixed the problem. fixing the problem. That's the first thing. The second thing is if I offended someone, if I spoke ill against someone. If it was backbiting against someone, somebody wasn't there, I was saying bad things about them. And so if I have a problem with somebody, I should man up and call them and say, Hey, I don't like you. I have a problem with you. I don't I don't like that you do this, this and this. I disagree with you. I think you're a liar. I think you're a thief. You know, what if you're man enough to do that, do it.
But if you don't have the spine, and you want to call everybody else and talk about it,
instead of talking to them, as if they have their doors closed, they can't be accessed. And you're you're backbiting about them, then a slug would be you know, I've been saying some pretty bad things about you. I still believe them. But at least I'm going to talk to you about it now instead of talking to somebody else. That's what I'm going to do first. This is a slot. I'm going to fix the problem first. But then there's the next step. Okay, maybe I did do something wrong. Maybe I didn't do backbiting I did didn't pay the rent. It was disrespectful to my dad, whatever it may be. Now there's the matter of asking for forgiveness, too. I have to ask this person. Hey, I'm sorry. I did
I wronged you, I said things about you, I shouldn't have said I did I did something I shouldn't have done. I didn't pay you, I owed you money. I didn't pay you on purpose, and I cause you pain. You know, I damaged your business. I didn't, I didn't like you. So I gave you a restaurant a bad review. And I made sure that your business goes down because I just didn't like your face, or whatever. Now I'm sorry, I did that. So you apologize. But there's a there's a problem. Now. We make a step far to Allah hundreds of times, hundreds of times, multiple times, there is still far to Allah in our Salawat. There's just a fire to a laughter of you prayer. We're asking Allah to forgive all the
Well, what about people? Let's say you hurt one of your friends. And your friend says, Hey, man, I'm sorry. Yeah, I'm not gonna forgive you. I'll see you on Judgement Day.
Like, no, no, I'm sorry. I'm really sorry. I don't want to hear it. You're not really that sorry.
And then you say, sorry, you get no, you're not sorry. No, no, that's not good enough. You think that's good enough. You think you can just say sorry? And that's you goes away.
Now this person is not willing to forgive you. Does that happen? Yeah. Now you did this law. You tried to fix the problem. And you also tried to ask for forgiveness. So you did that. But this person is not willing to forgive you. They're not letting go. And they say, No, I'll see you on Judgement Day, I'm gonna ask Allah to give me justice. I don't want your Islam. I don't want you to fix the price. I don't care if you fix the problem or not. And I don't want to hear anything from you. And that is a very common reality in the world. At that point, what are you supposed to do? The first thing I want to remind myself and you have is, we don't beg anyone other than Allah. Allah did
not make human beings someone to beg another human being the only one we become humble before and fall before and cry before and beg for forgiveness is Allah.
But then after that, let's say I was wrong, I wrong my mother wrong. My father, I shouldn't be humble before them, and begged them for forgiveness. But how many times is the question with Allah, I make a step far hundreds of times every day, with a human being. You do it sincerely. And you do it once. You do it sincerely, and you do it once. And that's it. Now they now they have to decide whether and by the way, if you genuinely ask for forgiveness, then it always comes with Islam. That's the other nuance that I wanted to bring to your attention. Sometimes people say sorry, and keep doing the bad thing over and over anyway.
I'm so sorry. I'm so sorry. And then the yellow, the son yells at the father again. And then next time, I'm really sorry that I keep losing my cool and that he disrespects his father again. And then he says, Sorry, again, he's not really sorry. Because I said, there are two things. There's this law, you got to fix the problem. And you got to apologize, right? So this person is apologizing, but they haven't fixed the problem. So if I'm really sorry, towards someone, one, I'm making reconciliation I'm making, I'm correcting the issue. And second, I'm asking for forgiveness, those two things are going hand in hand. Now let's say you did your part, you, you you messed up, you
messed up with somebody, and you fixed it, you did this law, and you apologized, but they're not ready to forgive you. If both of those conditions are met, and they're still not ready to forgive you. Then what are you supposed to do? Then you're supposed to keep asking Allah for forgiveness, but not them.
Allah will not on Judgment Day, hold up your forgiveness because somebody else is still angry. You're not responsible. I'm not responsible for anybody else's emotions. I'm not. I did the damage. Fine. I did it. I may have to pay for it in some way. But the way the only avenue Allah gave me in this life is law. And madiera. That's it. That's the only two avenues he gave me. You got to fix it payback, make up for it and ask for forgiveness. After that, if the person doesn't give that to me, then I can do nothing about it. Now there are situations where people had a bad relationship with a family member. Like somebody had a fight with their brother. They didn't get along, they stopped
talking to each other things got really ugly, and one of the brothers died.
Right? So now they can't fix it. And now they're carrying this guilt law. The last conversation I had with him, I told him, I hate you, you know, and now they died. And now I can't even apologize. I don't know what to do. Right. So now at this point, the only thing you can do is have hope in the forgiveness of Allah and do some good, do some good maybe even do some good in you know, to benefit the deceased and their family makeup in some sort of way. But don't let that hang over you that Allah will never forgive me. Allah did not make your judgment on Judgment Day dependent on anybody else's mood.
Unless you never made this
unless you never even tried, because the only thing, the only thing appreciated by a law Judgment Day or efforts, you know, that's the wild laser, the lens de la mesa. So that's the first thing that I wanted to bring to our attention this Ramadan. When we think about forgiveness, we shouldn't think that this is some blanket kind of forgiveness and all the other wrongs that we're doing, especially the wrongs that we do to each other human beings do to each other, that we don't need to fix that because we're doing Ramadan, it doesn't work that way. But the other thing that I wanted to as we come to the close of this remarkable month, that I wanted to remind myself of, and all of you have
is that the more a believer worships Allah. And the more they try to remember Allah, there's imagery in the Quran, I like to call it visual aids, you know how a good teacher they come into a class and they come with some props and visual aids, and they help you understand the subject, right, even younger, younger education teachers will bring toys with them to the classroom or something kids can look at, you know, when you teach children how to learn the alphabet, instead of a book, they'll give them blocks with the alphabets on them. Human beings are wired, our brains are wired to learn things visually better, when you see something and learn, it's actually much easier for you to
absorb, right, so what does Allah do in the Quran, Allah in many times very difficult concepts or heavy concepts, Allah teaches them by giving us a visual example. And that makes it easy to remember and understand how to live by that example. So he I read before you are very famous and beautiful, I have certain Bacara where Allah azza wa jal describes one dimension of my relationship with Allah, I have many relationships with Allah. And one of them is that Allah is my colleague, that Allah is my protective friend. And a Willie is one of the many words in Arabic for friends. And this word in particular has to do with a friend that is looking out for you. And he's in a in a level, you know,
there are some friends of yours they're really good to hang out with, but you would never leave your car with them.
That's not your willy. That's your friend. They're cool, you love their jokes, you love having dinner with them, but they cannot drive your car, there's another kind of friend, you can leave your keys to the house with them, you can leave the car with them, you can go for a year, and you know, everything's gonna be fine. Because they will look out for you, they're gonna protect you. Even in your absence, that kind of a friend who becomes even really ill.
Right, they will, they will take care of your situation, they will take care of your matter. That kind of a friend is called Willie. And in fact, when he goes even beyond friend, it can even be someone who's responsible for you. So you know, the father of the girl is also called already, the caretaker is also called Wedi. You know, and the leader of a tribe can actually also be called well, because he's taking care of the entire tribe. He's making sure that tribe is safe. So it can be the willie of the tribe. Allah uses this word to describe one dimension of my relationship with Him. That He is one he's looking out for me. And he's protecting me in every way. He's protecting me. So
Allah says, Allah, Who will you will live in harmony? But then he describes, okay, this relationship that he has with me, how does it practically show up? Like, what does it look like? Okay, so he has that relationship, what does he do on the basis of that relationship. And that's the phrase, you could use your home meaningful lumati, you don't know he brings the carbon translation, say, He brings them out of darknesses or darkness it towards light. And this is the part that I wanted to tell you is a visual aid is a visual example. Imagine somebody deep down inside of a cave, there's dark, and weighed the distance, you see an opening in the cave, there's light. And now you start
walking towards the light, you start walking towards the opening of the cave, right? When you're in the dark, you don't actually recognize your surroundings. You don't know if there's a snake here. You don't know if there's a hole here. You don't know if there's a sharp edge over here. If you lean on it, it can cut you you don't know, you don't actually know where you're standing. As you start taking steps towards the light. You know, you don't go from zero light to 100% Light immediately. That doesn't happen with every step. Maybe it's 1% more light. Next step. 1%. More light, isn't it? So it's getting less and that's why darkness is multiple shades. There's absolute darkness with
every, every, every step I take it's a little bit less dark. It's a little bit less dark. It's a little bit less dark, you understand? So Allah uses plural for darkness Lumads novel ma vumat. Why because every step is a little less darkness, a little less darkness and a little less darkness. There's there's other things and by the way, as I'm taking these steps, I look around and I see something
that now I know is dangerous. Now I know it's harmful. Two steps ago, I didn't think it was harmful at all because I didn't even see it. Two steps later, my view changed. I took a couple of other steps, my view changed again, I took a couple of other steps, I look back and I say, I can't go back there, it's darker back there. Now I'm afraid of taking a step backwards. When Allah is my protector friend, he has given me a path out of multiple kinds of darknesses. But in these few minutes that I have left, I wanted to highlight something complicated, or something not so much paid attention to in this image that Allah has given us. You know, Allah didn't just say, Allahu Allah Latina Armano
Yokohama novel Umatilla nor the corollary, the opposite is also being mentioned. And that's the opposite image Well, Latina cafardo, Alia Omoto, hood, yolk, Regina Homina new Illuma and those who disbelieve their protective friends are about to hood comes from to here to Riyadh in Arabic means disobedience. Open disobedience is one thing that you break the rule. It's another that you cut the red light and you look at the compensated what you're going to do. That's still here.
That's the you're openly rebellious. You're prideful, in how defiant you are. What are you going to do about it? Yeah, so I do it. Uh huh. Right. There's people that like, probably wear like a coffee or a t shirt. Like, what are you going to do? You know, similarly to the prophets, I still have some of the kofod used to say, you know, like, Allah describes your strategy. Okay, you've been talking about judgment, a judgment day sun and moon crashing? Let's have it. Bring it man. 10 years, you've been talking about it? Let's Let's go. Let's do this. Tired of hearing about it. You know, this, this attitude is still here. Allah says that there are people there are entities that want you to be
proud of disobeying.
To hit the hood, or people that want you to be proud of discipline. They don't just want you to disobey. They want you to make it look like disobedience is a good thing. And they're inviting humanity. They're inviting them. And some people accept them as friends and think that they're looking out for me. There might
Allah didn't just describe them as the who was it? OLIO Houma Tahoe. So that same relationship I have with Allah, he's looking out for me, he's protecting me. I can I can trust him. I can leave my matters with him. Right? This attitude is for some people, some forces in the world that openly wants you to disobey Allah, and they sell to you. I'm looking out for you. I'm trying to protect you. I'm trying to protect you from this barbaric religion. I'm trying to protect you from this oppression. I'm trying to protect you from judgment. And they'll use pretty words like let me give you freedom. Let me make you feel good about yourself. Let me let I want you to be you. Be true to
yourself, which means worship your enough's, come earlier Omata hood. And there are people that say, Yeah, that's a good offer. And there's they even they could be standing in the light.
Standing in that, by the way, the image of standing in the light means you are in Allah's guidance. That's actually the image. So there's a there's a man who prays there's a man who stays away from Hara, there's a woman who observes Allah's religion in the way she carries herself in the way she speaks in the way she does business in the way she dresses, she, they're there, they're in light, and all of a sudden, they start getting invited towards the horse, and the horse starts convincing them that I'm you're willing, we're looking out for you. And they say, that's a pretty good invitation. And these take one step away from the light,
you know, who may not know it, they say take one step away from the light. And some of the things that they saw were bad, they look a little adult, so they don't look as dangerous anymore. And they take another step, and they take another step. And the things that they used to be very sensitive about. They were very sensitive about where their eyes used to go. They were very sensitive, not the words that used to come out of their mouth. They were very sensitive about the way they used to talk about people. They used to be sensitive about some things. Every step they take towards darkness, they're becoming less and less and less sensitive, because they don't see the problem. It's too dark
to see that it's dangerous. So you stop but you start getting desensitized. And it's not an overnight thing. It's not an overnight you don't just go from Oh, I was I was in the light and now I'm in the darkness. And it's not overnight also the other way I was in the darkness now I'm in the light Alhamdulillah that people say these kinds of things. Yeah. Used to be in the misguidance of Hamdulillah. Allah guided me. Yeah, no, no is a step that would not work. You gotta go step by step. You
You know, there's there's one step at a time. And so this is something I want all of us to contemplate deeply about ourselves. And the final thing that I want to leave you with, in this reminder about darknesses to light is that there are multiple darknesses. So it could be that I didn't used to pray. But now I'm praying. So there was that one darkness in my life. And that one darkness, I'm moving towards light.
But there's another darkness I have a really bad temper.
And I haven't done anything about that one.
That's still that's even darker now. That's even during my prayers have become great. But my temper is still really bad. My tongue is still very sharp. My tongue is very hurtful. My opinion of others is still very judgmental. I'm still very quick to make assumptions about people.
There's still some darkness is inside that hearts, even though in other parts, other parts of me are heading towards light, some parts of me are still in the darkness. And you know what, this is what confuses a lot of people. And they say how come you see people they pray? They they dress modestly. They read Quran they even teach Quran, but then they're so mean.
Are they did she people in business? This guy's got such a big beard, he could trip on it. And he still lies. And he does this that he does this. That's because they may have addressed one dirt darkness, but they didn't ever concern themselves with the other darkness. And Allah azza wa jal wants to make pull the Allah when he he wants to pull us out of all of our darknesses Marinova Lumads. Illinois, not just one of them, not just one of them. So in Ramadan, yes, we're praying. And maybe some of you weren't praying regularly or praying now in Ramadan, that's a great darkness that you came out of, and you're heading towards light. But are there other darknesses that need to be
addressed? Are there other and by the way, this is this is especially important for those of us that feel like at one point we were disobedient to Allah. Right. And now we've made changes and now we're obedient to Allah, especially when it comes to the prayer because the prayer has become a litmus test for who's religious and who's not religious. So if you're praying Alhamdulillah you're Islamic now. Congratulations, you have the Islamic badge. Okay, now that you're Islamic, you know what the assumption is? You no longer have a darkness
You're good now you graduated from the dark school you're in the light now?
No, no, no, no, no, you address one problem. You address one problem. And what happens is others and yourself can become blind to the fact that even though we've taken steps towards Allah, were acting in obedience to Allah, there are still yet other darknesses we have to conquer. Ramadan is a really amazing time to look inside myself and say, What darkness is remain. What darkness is need to come to an end? Yes, we should be reciting a lot of Quran. Yes, we should be making a lot of Doha a lot of prayers, but the purpose of Quran and DUA and prayers is actually to accept Allah as the holy and actually to accept those steps that I need to take out of whatever darkness is I'm in towards light.
And Allah azza wa jal make this week this last week of Ramadan. May Allah azza wa jal make this week a week of all of us taking steps towards light. I mean, Allah azza wa jal make our steps towards life easier and easier and pull us away from any inclination of friendship towards adulthood that we falsely might think is actually looking out for us when all it is is destroying us. BarakAllahu li Welcome to Quran Al Hakim when I finally we combine it with the key.
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of Mali him or hate him in the beginning. Mohamed El Amin rather early he was so happy he called Allah azza wa jal keekaboo Karim but an Akula also be learning ministry conduct regime in Allahu wa Mala Iike who use Aluna and then the Wii. U 100. In Amman Sallu alayhi wa salim Taslima Allahumma Salli ala Muhammad Ali Mohammed camasta. Later Allah Rahim while earlier Ibrahim Al Al Amin in Mohammed Al Majeed, Allahumma barik ala Muhammad Anwar the early Mohammed Omar Abdullah Ibrahim rather early Rahima Phil Alameen in gamida, Majid about Allah right Malcolm Allah, Allah and Allah yup monopolize the relation where he tells your quarterback, well you don't have any fresher you
will. Monica what are they called? Like Akbar? Allahu, ya know, momentous now I can Salah in NA salata, kind of Nina, Kitab and Mahkota