An excerpt from “Muslim Family Life” lecture given at Islamic Association of North Texas (IANT) Collins Musallah
I hope this part makes it by itself to you too without the rest of the lecture. Yeah the question is there indication, there might be alien life outside of the planet earth and the Qur’an might even have a hint or two about it, yes some Ulamahs (Scholars) has talked about it under some ayah (verse). My response first of all is who cares? Why? Because we have such big problems right now, such really big problems in front of us that we don’t have time to get into any of this stuff, when people come and ask me, what’s your opinion about the Prophet’s birthday? I say, I don’t have an opinion about the Prophet’s birthday, because that’s not an issue; the issue is our children are doing drugs; the issue is kids are leaving Islam, that’s an issue. You wanna spend your energies debating whether it’s halal (permissible) or haram (non- permissible) or bidaah (innovation) or Sunnah (way of Prophet s.a.w.w.), when you have people leaving the deen (relegion) itself. What is wrong with you? It’s a non-issue. Should we pray eight taraweeh or 20 taraweeh? I don’t care, people aren’t even praying. Pray it thirteen, I don’t care. Somebody come to the masjid (mosque) at-least, come to the masjid (mosque) at-least, you know how many sisters have come up to me, I teach surah Ar-Rehman, and in surah Ar-Rehman Allah talks about hell fire and I remind people that we should be worried to save our families from the hell fire, sister’s coming up to me and telling me that my husband is addicted to alcohol, what should I do, I don’t know what to do, you know! I don’t even know where to get help. Muslim family! And he comes, he is in the masjid right now , he is sitting there but he is addicted to alcohol and he gets angry if I talk to him about it and that same guy is gonna debate me whether or not I should raise RAFA YA DEN before I make RUKUU’ or not, really! Is nothing else we have to talk about? You seeing what I am saying? We have to kill these issues; we have to kill them. We have to give life to the real issues; raising our children, raising our daughters specifically our daughters, raising confident sons of Islam. How do we produce the Daa’ees (preachers) in this ummah (community), how do we produce them, how we gonna educate ourselves and the ummah (community) in the Qur’an, how we are going to introduce the sirah (character) of Prophet (S.A.W.W.) to everybody, every man, woman and child should know what this man was like, and how he spent his life, how are we gonna do that, how we are going to help our teenage student, they are having trouble with their faith, when they take a revolution class, how are we gonna! These are issues! This is right now! This is happening right now, other stuff it’s very interesting, I don’t say it’s not interesting, I think it’s very interesting. One time when I was younger, I read a thirty page paper on whether or not, leather socks or cotton socks for WUDHU (ablution), a thirty page paper. If you were to ask me to read that again I would say, NO! And if anybody else was gonna read this, I would say NO! Just follow a scholar; there are much bigger things to worry about man! I don’t care either way, there is more important stuff. This is the Muslim mentality, it has to change. Our mentality has to become; what is priority? What is the real focus? And I don’t mean any disrespect to anybody by this, but I do believe it’s hurting the ummah (community); I personally am convinced of that it’s hurting the ummah (community). What the Qur’an made a priority, is a priority for us. What the Qur’an didn’t make a priority is not a priority for us. Has Allah, you know, make a big deal out of the question, where Allah is? People coming and ask, where is Allah? Is He at the seventh heaven or is He everywhere? Did Allah ask that question? Did the Sahabah Radi Allahu Taala Anhu (Companions of Prophet s.a.w.w) ask that question? Did they repeatedly ask this question? No! Our priorities should be the Qur’an’s priorities. The things we repeat the most are the things, Allah repeats the most. And what does Allah repeat the most? Taqwa (piety)! Have taqwa! Have taqwa! Two hundreds some-times taqwa! And what does Allah repeat the most? Don’t be like Bani Israel! Don’t be like Bani Israel! That’s what He repeats the most, that’s what we should repeat the most. This is what should become our main concern, our priority, you know. We have to get away from distractions; we really do, as a people.
Last comment, I’ll share with you about this, and I am not saying any of you are like this, but I have seen this many times. There are people they don’t pray, and even if the pray it’s like one of those, the fastest prayer record you have ever seen, kind of prayers. Have you ever seen those? Those are cardiovascular exercise, it’s a workout their prayer. And then (then don’t pray) number two they have no problem with Ghibah (back biting) in their life, no problem whatsoever. They have inappropriate kinds of gatherings. They have done nothing to raise their children. They are engaged in all kinds of Haram (non- permissible) business, but when they sit and discuss Islam, they say: Aaahhh Islam! What does it say about… what is the seven heavens? What is that? And what does Islam say about slavery? And what does Islam say about, you know, four wives? What’s this issue with four wives? This is all their Islam is! You know why? Because they are so deeply drowning in sin, they don’t want to address that issue. That’s the real issue! So they don’t have to address that but they still wanna talk about Islam, so they talk about something other on the side in Islam that doesn’t have to do with my real life, so bring that up to me, lets talks about that. How come the Qur’an says this about Jannah (Paradise) and that about Jannah (Paradise)? Or I need to understand you know, what is gonna happen to Christian on judgment day. Bro! What is gonna happen to you on judgment day? Forget the Christian! What is gonna happen to you? People come and ask; what do women get in Jannah? Allah will take care of them, don’t worry about it! You get there! You are like, you have taken it already and you are worried about the women now? You know! Come on! We have to be realistic Muslims. Realistic! We deal with reality on the ground and we look at our religion and we look for solutions for the problems we are facing right now, you remember I told you we need a revolution in Islamic studies, this is what I meant. We have to study the issues that are afflicting the ummah (community) right now, not the old issues. Not the issues that, nobody will benefit from, not the issues that will not make any of you a better Muslim. If it won’t make me a better Muslim, if it won’t make me a better worshipper, a better slave of Allah, a better father, a better husband, a better son, a better daughter, a better citizen, a better contributor, a better donator; it won’t make me any of these things, I don’t wanna know about it.
I have a friend, last comment I promise, I have a friend really smart guy. 4.0 GPA all of Harvard University! Smart! Smart! I mean I talked to him for two minutes, I feel so stupid. And he wanted to do Islamic studies, so he went to Syria and he studied hadith and he went somewhere else and he studied some scholar. Incredibly intelligent person! And finally he did his PHD thesis, his PHD thesis is on the life of the scholar, one of the students of Imam Shafaee, he did his PHD thesis on the life of one of the students of Imam Shafaee. A 400 page thesis!
And I picked him up from the airport one time and I am talking to him so what was your thesis? He tells me about the scholar, his life, a very interesting person, he wrote this book and that book, so I was like what happened to your thesis? He said it has been published. I asked, where has it been published? From the University! So where is it siting? In the library! Who has read it? He goes; he smiles; I don’t think anybody would have read it. I said you are telling me you spent twelve years studying Islam, twelve years studying Islam, with the intelligence that Allah gave you, and you studied something that nobody is reading. Is that their fault or you fault? You went into a subject, that you found interesting. Why didn’t you go into a subject that the ummah (community) needed? Why didn’t you think about it that way? What is the Muslim’s deen (religion)? What is this deen (religion) have to give the Muslim? Where are the people that are studying Qur’anic Psychology? So we can give psychological counselling. Where are the people that are studying prophetic healing, mediation, conflict resolution between husband and wife, conflict resolution between Muslims? Where people that are studying? Do we need those issues? Yeah! But we are not even studying those issues. (We like to) We come up with a thesis or some obscure topic and we are gonna study that like, to the depths and who is gonna benefit from that? I don’t know! Some other scholar, we are all leaving it. (So the scholars) We are pushing people to become scholar in this bubble, that doesn’t affect the society. Now, Alhamdulillah! Some scholars are coming out of that and they are starting to deal with issues that actually have to do with Muslim life and what’s happening in the world, but we have to push that and propel that further. We have to push our Ulamahs (Scholars) to give us solutions, they are the ones that are leading us, they are shepherds; (but we) sometimes they become so in love with their books, that they don’t know what’s happening on the ground. I sat with an Aalim (Scholar), a really qualified Aalim and Mufti; so honored to sit in his company and I said I want to ask you something, if a person does XYZ, a young person does XYZ. What do you say about him? It’s Haram (non-permissible), he can’t etc. etc. he said. I said, Okay! Let me give you some background, this happened and then this happened and then this happened and this is the situation. He goes that’s impossible that would never happen! I said it is happening every day. A Muslim teenager! (That’s the life of a) you know, of a T.V. show I heard, it calls “Life of the American teenager”, we should have another T.V. show “Secret life of the Muslim teenagers”. Seriously! And this Aalim is shocked. He cannot believe Muslim youth can be like this. That’s not his fault, that’s our fault; that we didn’t go and even. Our Ulamah know The Book, they know The Book; they know the Qur’an, they know the Sunnah, what don’t they know? What’s going on around them! We have to give them that. So they can give us the right guidance. We have to push them in that. You know, the people of Riwayah in their ayah it’s called, the people of Narration, some of our Ulamah are like that they really know what’s going on around them, they do! But a lot of our Ulamah don’t. And so the way they address issues is not in connection with, what’s going on in reality, it’s a problem! We have to build that generation. We are gonna build a generation of young people, that learn their deen (religion) and connected with reality. Those benefit from the scholars, and are able to be the connection between the scholars and society. Our young people are gonna teach our scholars, this is what happening in society!