The Shepherd And The Flock
Channel: Nouman Ali Khan
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Today's homebuyers an attempt to help myself and you review some very important lessons from one single IRA that belongs to certain million. That's the 23rd, sort of the Quran. And it's a very short I have the solar will let you normally see him when I see him around. Before I translate this, I'm going to go through some of its important vocabulary, and build the meanings of this IR through a study, a careful look at some of the words that are involved in this ayah. And I'd like to start with the word or our own, which is the last word in this ayah. It comes from the Arabic verb era, which means to protect or overlook something. And from it, you get the idea of a pasture like Maria,
and Mara. Mara is actually used for green pasture where cows and sheep are eating their grass, and they're feeding, but it's protected area. It's protected from wolves and other animals and are the person, the shepherd, who's always keeping an eye on them and protecting them because sheep often don't know. Or, you know, goats don't know that they're near the edge of a cliff. And he's constantly watching them because they're not smart enough to realize that they might just keep raising that look up and tip over, he has to constantly look out for wolves or predators that are around the corner, or they're hiding away and they can attack at any time. In other words, someone
is not capable, this this RR is someone protecting a group, in this case, a group of animals that is not capable of protecting themselves, they don't see the danger that they're in. And only he's capable of seeing that and his job is to watch over all of them and make sure that they don't end up either hurting themselves or others, or you know, hurting themselves or somebody else hurts them. The other thing that happens with with these kinds of animals is sometimes they chew on a kind of plant that may be poisonous, or they can eat and chew on something that has thorns in it and they can kill themselves. Or they can get themselves caught up, you know and get you know, strangled.
Even the Quran describes animals that get caught up in strangling women, Hanukkah, right animals that get caught up in a branch or somewhere and they strangle themselves. So these animals get themselves in a lot of trouble. And so the shepherds job is to constantly keep watch on them. That's the word used in this ayah to describe us one of the roles that we play. Before I go to the I remind myself and you have a great saying of the Prophet of Allah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam, kulu Kamara in Baku, Luca masala masala tea, every single one of you is a shepherd, same word. And every single single one of you is going to be questioned and is answerable. You can even translate that as
responsible, someone who is going to be questioned about your own flock, there are people under you, there are people in your responsibility that you are responsible for that you have to watch over that you have to protect it I have to protect a teacher has to protect students in some cases. You know, like, you know, especially when you have younger students, like you know, people that are teaching in an elementary school or kindergarten, it's the teachers responsibility that these kids don't run out of the classroom and into the hallway or run away from school or somewhere else. It's their job, they're being held responsible for that, but also that they don't end up hurting
themselves. Similarly, each one of us as members of household, we're being told every single one of us has a flock under us. And what does that mean? You would think that this is only about the head of the household, meaning the man of the house the you know, the father figure, the husband, whoever, and they're responsible for everybody else in the family and at some level that's true. In some level, that's true, but a lie allows messenger in this case, a la la hora de Sanam is saying every one of us actually has people under our influence. Every one of us has someone under us that looks up to us, or, you know, gives us some level of authority and respect and we have to mind that
authority and respect and we have to watch for the people under our care could look around in Baku, lucuma Solon, area T. But but the subject of my hope is something else entirely something that gets overlooked in the study of this ayah it's only highlighted in passing but I think it deserves a lot of attention. And so I'll translate desire for you now. Allah says when Latina homely Am I naughty him, Why him around those who this is describing people that have already attained success, the true believers, this is from the beginning of the surah, or beginning of this passage, and one of their qualities is those who when it comes to their trusts, I might not see him and their promise, there
trust, I'm using the plural word, am I unnati him where I had him and their promise, they are watchful, like a shepherd. Okay, this is the this is the essential meaning. And so what I want to now highlight for myself and for all of you is the meaning of the word trusts. Am I not? Amana comes from the word admin, which means to be to be safe and to be at peace. When someone feels safe enough with you that they say here are my car keys. I'm going to go for the weekend. Just I trust you with it. I trust you it will be safe in your hands. Just make sure if it rains park it here or if there's a storm, take it in the garage or whatever. But here are the keys and they trust you with it. This
is not the same as when you get the keys to a rental car and you violate it but you've been handed the keys somebody trust that you will not you will take care
Have this responsibility with the highest of care. As a matter of fact, you'll be more careful with it than you would be with your own car. Because you've been entrusted with it and this person feels safe enough that they handed this to you. So this is the idea of an Amana, sometimes and Amanda is by choice. Sometimes it's by choice, meaning somebody says, I don't know who I can leave my car with, or I needed to make sure that somebody checks my mail, I'm going to be out of town, could you do that for me, and they hand you that choice, and you by choice, take on that role. But there are lots of a minority in our life that are not a choice that Allah handed to us, whether we like it or
not, for example, you being a son of your parents, or a daughter of your parents is not a choice. And that trust that you will fulfill your obligations to your parents is on you, whether you like it or not, you have been entrusted with this, you have been you have to be watched over this, your children, the responsibility you have over your kids, over even your siblings to an extent your own family, these are not relationships of choice, these are relationships, who are harmed, these are relationships of the womb, that Allah created, you cannot overlook those relationships, you and I cannot just say, Well, I don't want to, I don't feel like my brother's my real brother. And you
don't have any obligations to you. But you can do that. There are relationships we have in life that are by choice. Other relationships, we have no choice in the matter, Allah handed those to us and we have to fulfill them. So this is part of the meaning of Am I not, but some have also come next next to it is the word I had. And I had this a promise, which is an extension of an Amana. It's a little bit different from an Amanda and Amanda, for example, you've been left to your devices and you do what you do. But in I had you actually promised that you'll fulfill something you'll do something you told your employer you're going to finish this task by this time. Or when you sign the contract
that you will, you know, fulfill your obligations with honesty or whatever you basically signed on something and you guaranteed that you will do your part this is I had some have looked at this ayah and said this is referring to the promise we made with Allah, which is true. Part of the meaning of this ayah is in fact that we all promised before Allah, Allah asked us, Am I not your master is to be able to be human. We all responded by Show Hidden Of course, we promised, why not we testify. We have accepted the lies our master, that's the original promise called 109 mythical calm, your covenant has already been taken the promises already been taken from you. But I want to highlight
the other side of this. This this is the side that I think all of us are familiar with. We're supposed to be watchful over our promises. We're supposed to take care of our responsibilities. But there's something special about the language of this ayah. First and foremost, a shepherd Arar isn't just someone who's careful, or is someone a shepherd is someone that if you take your eyes off of your responsibility for a single moment, or for five minutes, he just says, oh, let me just take a nap under this tree while the sheep are doing their thing. Those five minutes may be enough for three of them to fall off the cliff, or the wolf to do his thing You understand? Like there's a
constant vigilance over his flock. There's a constant watching over and a concern. I'm worried about this group, or this responsibility that's been handed to me. And it can go go the wrong way. At any moment, I have to be extremely protective and concerned about the people or the in this case, the animals under my care, but in our case, the people under our care, right. But let's take that a step further.
If I am, in fact, a shepherd, and I'm watching over my animals, I don't have time to kind of comment on the other guy who's on the other field, hey, sleeping on the job.
If I'm too busy observing him, What am I not observing my work, my responsibility. Sometimes you'll find this phenomenon at work. You have people that are not very good at their job.
Or they're very lazy with their job. And if you're in an office like that, or in a business like that, and you have people like that, you'll know that their their time is mostly spent talking about other employees.
So what are you doing, you know, this one, this way, this way, this way, you have so much time to talk about what other people are not doing. You know why you have that time, because you're not watching over your own responsibilities. align this I'll put it to the team. Allah says we're levina home Amati him we're adding him
on our own not well, Edina hombre una semana de Amana to invite him. He put a minute and I had no condom. He put it earlier as if to say it is only on their own responsibilities only on their own trust only on their own promises that they keep crazy watch that they keep vigilant watch. And when they do that they don't have time to preoccupy themselves with the faults and the flaws of anybody else. As a matter of fact, that is an indication that you aren't really fulfilling your own responsibilities. It's not just about work. It's actually about what do you keep an eye on? There are people who keep an eye on everybody else, as if to say there is there is no need for them to
keep an eye on themselves.
They're already way past. Now it's time for them to comment on everybody else. This happens, of course in the workplace. But I want to highlight also that this doesn't just happen in the workplace. It also happens in our families. It also happens in our interpersonal relationships. You'll have people that are very quick to comment on somebody else's family. You know, the way they raised their kids, I don't even know what they're doing.
As if your children were raised angels
and your children No, no, we come from a good family. Our kids don't do that, really, because your kids don't breathe in the same oxygen that everybody else does. And I remind you of something I've said so many years ago, but I need to remind myself of, if you hide behind this delusion that your kids and my kids come from a good family. Let me tell you something. Ibrahim alayhis. Salaam is a pretty good family.
And his son, his son is is Huck. And Ibrahim is a prophet races. Elisa to Islam is happy as a prophet is haka la Salaam has a son, Yahoo. He's also a prophet. So the grandfather is a prophet, then the father is a prophet, and the grandson is also a prophet. And then he has children. Yeah, who has children, one of them is a prophet, Yusuf alayhi salam.
But he has other kids too.
Though these kids come from a pretty good family, if somebody asked them what family you come from, and this is actually something Yusuf Alayhi Salam himself is proud of, but the bathroom in LA by even in prison, he says, I follow the the legacy and the religion of my father, my family, my ancestors, and he mentioned his father's. But if those sons of Yahuwah Salaam, who were willing to kill their own brother, or at the very least kidnap him, and throw him in a well in a ditch in the middle of the woods, and then lie to their dad about it, those same brothers if you argue these are these guys are really messed up. No, no, but they come from a good family.
They couldn't come from a better family, arguably, their direct descendants of Ibrahim Alayhi Salaam, three generations of prophets. And one of the brothers is a prophet to our lineage is not what we come from a good family. Therefore we have that we have time and opportunity now to comment on other people's families. Because we're from a respectable clan back home. Our kids never do that kind of thing. Yeah, they do. They do. We're not i'm not saying your kids are terrible. And my kids are great. I'm not saying that either. But I'm saying that we have to be very open eyes, about our own family. You know, oftentimes, we don't want to hear bad news. Sometimes your kids are in high
school, or you're, they're in elementary school, and somebody saw something your kids were doing. Somebody told you something about your daughter, or your son, you know, I was concerned I saw this happen. This happened. I was kind of worried. Or somebody calls and says your son got into a fight. And he hit my kid. Oh, yeah, must have been your kid.
Like before you find out anything else? No, not my kid. We're a good family. They're the ones that are messed up. I'm gonna make sure my kid is never around your kid ever again, and etc, etc, we get overly protective, because we assume we can our family can't be wrong. We can't be the ones that go everybody else's messed up. What is this ayah telling us before you keep an eye on somebody else and criticize them, and you know, worry about them and concern yourselves with them and point out what's wrong with them. You and I are supposed to be concerned about what's going on in our own home. I've literally known cases of families that are commenting on how these kids man, they don't need these,
their daughters don't even dress like this. And there's signs of hospital law, and their own kids have a drinking problem.
And they don't even know. And then we didn't want to talk about it. But they have time to comment on somebody else. You know, this delusion happens when we're not keeping our eyes where they're supposed to be.
We're not keeping our eyes where they're supposed to be. The this ayah profoundly says we're living in a humbly a minority him to him around.
And this is actually the use of the lamb here is also really remarkable. It's actually because Allah has entrusted you with this, because you have engaged in this process. In this promise, you should unconcerned yourself with everybody else. You don't care. We take no pleasure in finding out something's wrong with somebody else's family, or some of your friends or whatever else. We take no pleasure in that. Because we are too busy watching over the Amana that's been handed over to us and now bring it not even to the level of family I gave you this kind of thing happens at work. This kind of thing happens in your families. This kind of thing happens when people comment on each other
in social gatherings. People even do this to each other's in laws. Or I don't know why we married into your family. You know, I don't even know what kind of mistake we've made. We were such a good family and I don't know how we gave you a chance and this kind of trash talk to the other family as if your family's like no descended
Heaven. And these people are, you know, a lot of gender something that you know, they don't even deserve you.
This kind of talk needs to come to an end. And so the word lamb here goes back to actually personal. It's not even work. It's not society, it's not family. It goes back at the end of the day to the individual himself or herself. Allah azza wa jal gave us an Amana, me and Amanda over myself. This is the Amana that was handed to all of creation, and they couldn't bear it. For Athena and yummy La, La La, la, la San all of creation couldn't handle the trust that was given to us. And we are and we were capable of carrying it. Well, Hamada inside
Allah azzawajal gave us that that Amana of choice of making the right decisions and of course we make mistakes. Of course, along the way, even though this heavy burden of responsibility has been put on you and myself along the way, because all children have other make mistakes. khulumani Adam hapa
every teacher, all children of Adam are makers of mistakes. Well,
the best of those who make mistakes are the ones who go back and repent. This changes my view of things, you know, take stock of the kinds of conversations you and I have throughout the day, who do you talk to? And what do you talk about, and how much of that conversation is about others and how messed up they are, how inferior they are, how less than you they are, how just how disappointing they are, and how much of that conversation is actually one about ourselves and to about our own family and what we can do to help those in need within our own family. This is the last bit of my codebook the purpose of a shepherd is not to find out that a sheep is making a mistake, it's about
to eat something poisonous, or it ate something poisonous, and then go and kick the sheep
and say you dumb animal and then beat it up. The purpose of being a shepherd is to find out when something is going wrong, to prevent it from happening to make sure that if there is a mistake made, that the healing can happen, that it can be saved. And it does so with loving care. That's what's done. What happens often in our households is when we take the responsibility, okay, fine, I'm not concerned about others. I'm gonna concern myself with myself and my family and those under my care. When I do that, then I become a dictator.
I started pointing out everything wrong with my son or my daughter. You know, are my my siblings every chance I get I point out you know, you're still this you still that all your, you know, the way you dress, the way you talk, the way you look, the way you stand the way you sit. There are some parents who like their daughters that have that have come up to me sometimes, who say my mom is never happy with me. It was it was I mean, she's never happy when she's not happy. The way I stand the way I sit. The way I dress. If I'm wearing socks is like why are you wearing those socks? If you're when you're smiling? Why are you smiling? Why aren't you smiling? Why are you sitting facing
this way? Why aren't you sitting facing that? Where's the guy? I can't take it anymore.
And now now this kid has listens to their parent for nothing. Because the parents constantly criticizing. And when you tell the parent chill out a little bit easy. The parent will say no, no, but we have to watch over our kids. Yeah, but you can't be overbearing on your kids. The idea of a shepherd is not the shepherd doesn't take the sheep and says eat this batch of grass. Now he that when the sheep has some room, there's some room to operate. I'm reminded also of the mother of Masonic Salaam, who when she put the baby in the water. And the baskets started floating away because it's a river. She couldn't go outside to check on the baby. It was a crazy situation. She
can't go outside. She had actually let her her daughter go outside.
And when she sent her daughter outside, she didn't say hey, make sure you don't talk to any strangers. Make sure you wear or what kind of shoes are you wearing? No, not Where are the other ones? Make sure you don't tell anybody. That's your brother. Make sure this make sure that she didn't say anything.
She just said to see. Follow him. That's all she said. And the little girl was also not someone who said Well, do you want me to follow him for like 30 minutes or come back after 10 minutes? Or? I mean, how badly do you want me it's in the water you want to swim after him? I don't understand. Nope, the girl didn't do that. The girl was raised in a way by by the mom who was in that case, her Shepherd, that she understood when mom says follow. I have to use my common sense. We have to empower those under us to be able to use their common sense. And this girl did. She followed the baby all the way and she came up with a plan to bring the baby bring even the baby back and to
reunite with the mother to the mom to end up going there. All of that happened because the child was given room to operate. What I'm trying to say is yes, we are responsible over our families. But you know, let's let's be real for a minute especially those of us that are now parents of older kids. Some of your kids are teenagers. Like my kids are teenagers and delila. He went early he Rajon a couple of them are teenagers. Some of your kids are in college some of your kids are married and you're still overbearing.
You're still overly controlling over your children. And that's a desire we have, we don't want them to make the mistakes that everybody else around us makes. Though maybe the mistakes we made, we don't want that to happen for them. But understand something, they have been brought in a society where terrible choices don't just start happening when the kid turned 16, or 17, or 18, those horrible choices were accessible to them, by the time they turned seven, or eight or nine, that was already accessible to them. And we brought them in this world, we brought them in the society, and we're raising them in the society, if we don't give them the the strength and the confidence to be
able to make their own choices, and we keep thinking, we're gonna push them and make sure they're doing this or that or the other, then the moment they have a little bit of freedom, you've lost them.
You've lost them, because they do not want to be told what to do, they do not want to be lost. That is not what our ra does. Allah gives room to operate. So there were two essential messages that I wanted to share with you in light of this ayah. One, we cannot take our responsibility lightly.
We cannot and that means we cannot be focused on other people and their responsibilities and what they are not doing. Focus on what you're not doing and what needs to take, take place in your own family. That's what you and I need to focus on. The other is that when we do focus on our own family and our own responsibilities, that we cannot become overbearing, that we actually have to be loving and kind and patient as we do it. The IR could have been what Allah cabasse allottee
you could have ended there, tell your family to pray. Allah says what's the big idea? What's the big idea? be extremely started with even what spirit Allah has was popular alien scioto vida, be extremely patient on that commandment. Why? Because when you tell your son to pray your daughter to pray, they might say I don't I don't want to keep telling me to pray. And there may even be conflict in the home because you just keep talking about prayer. Be patient with that. It won't just happen overnight.
Take it easy. your patience will be tested. And I'm I'm really shocked that the word Esteban is not used anywhere else. Somebody is used to sobre su Escobar only in this ayah when it's talking about your own family. So with our families, we do require a special level of care. A special level of patience to be able to fulfill the responsibility of being our army allows us and make us of those who truly fulfill our responsibilities. And may Allah azzawajal overlook the shortcomings we have in fulfilling our responsibilities May Allah protect the flock under all of our care. And may Allah azzawajal give us the ability to raise a generation of this woman that does a much better job
carrying Islam than we do. barakallahu li Welcome to court and Hakeem whenever anyone here can be it with decreed Hakim hamdu lillahi wa Salatu was Salam O Allah anybody Latino stafa also Salah Afghani Mahatma Nabina Muhammad amin, le he was he ajmeri Nicola la hora hlp Kitab al Karim by the anahola Billahi min ash shaytani r rajim. In De La Hoya mela Nikita who you saw lunarlon Debbie? Yeah you hola Nina. amanu sallu alayhi wa sallam Otis Lima Allahumma salli ala Muhammad Ali Mohammed gamma salata, Allah Rahim Ali Ibrahim al al amin in hamidah Majeed Allahumma barik Allah Muhammad Ali Muhammad, gamma Baraka Ibrahim Ali Ibrahim al al amin in naka homido Majeed de la Rahim Allah, Allah
in the La Jolla mobility When shall we eat it will Korba when her and in fact, he will mooncup when he will La Jolla la Mata snare on upcoming sala de la takealot Mini Nikita makuta