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Surah Al-Asr Redefining Success and Failure

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Nouman Ali Khan

Channel: Nouman Ali Khan

Episode Notes

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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Now Allah essentially in the Surah, after talking about how some things you, you take very seriously, and you have no you can't wait, you just want to get them right away. And some things you're distracted. And you put aside, Allah says you can't just keep going this way because your time is running out well as

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well as her. And then he makes a further argument. There's two things we want, we want better. And we want more. The argument for better isn't sorted out yet. The argument for more isn't suited to castle from kathira. Those are the two things that drive humanity, we want better, you want a better life, you want a better house, you want a better car, you want better clothes, you want a better phone, you want a better, better, better, better, better, better, all everything has to be better. And even if you have it, you want something more. So it's quality and what quantity those two things are constantly obsessing if you have everything, you want more money now, because I might want

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something better later.

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Alright, so and if I want something better, I need more money. So it's either quantity or quality or quantity or quality. If I had more money, I'd have a better quality car, a better quality house, better quality clothes, better quality, travel, better quality vacation, that's what these two things are, they bounce off of each other. Now those two things, we feel if we had those two things, we'd be successful,

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we'd actually be successful. And the more we're getting, the more successful we are someone who has a higher salary is considered more successful than someone who has a lesser salary. The one who has a higher education and more degrees is more successful than someone who has less degrees. There's someone who has a better quality life, better quality materials around them, you know better quality of you no social circle is considered more successful than the one who doesn't. And so to Lhasa comes along, and reverse engineers all of it and says actually, all of this is just loss.

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No, all of this, your time's running out and you're running after things that are nothing but loss in Ireland sanella.

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It just first Allah commented on how obsessed you are with more and better. And then he basically said and more and better, the way you think of them is nothing but failure. It has nothing to do with success. This surah redefines success and failure. And this is actually why this is the Quran is worldview encapsulated. Look.

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Everybody sees the sun, everybody sees the moon, everybody sees the stars, everybody sees the sky. Human beings whether they believe or not see the same sky, we breathe the same air, we look at the same ocean, our views are the same. It's not like the kaffir sees a different sun, they see the same sun.

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Similarly, we define things in the same way in the world. The team that won the championship is a winner, the team that lost the championship was a loser. So we define success and failure the same way. The ones who the one who won the election is a success, the one who lost the election is a failure. The one who graduated is a success, the one who got kicked out of school is a failure. This is it doesn't matter if you're Muslim or not. You're going to think of success and failure. In the same way. What does this surah do, it takes something so basic, like the definition of success and failure. And it puts a new Quran lens on it. And after you put this lens on, and I put this lens on,

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my definition of success and failure fundamentally differs from every other human being.

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It doesn't matter what other what religion they are, and what lifestyle they have, and whether they're even from my same family, there could even be a fellow Muslim, the fellow Muslim who sees the world through SUTA Lawson. And the fellow Muslim who doesn't see the world through SUTA Lhasa see two different things. They see two very different things. I would like here just at this point, to give you an example of that, before we go any further, we're still in the in the very introductory phases of the surah.

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You know, if you think of somebody homeless, you don't think of somebody successful. Homelessness is an easy example of someone who's not successful. If you think of somebody deported from the country, you don't think of somebody successful. That's not that's pretty humiliating, and an unsuccessful state to be we wouldn't want to be in that state. When you think of poverty, you don't think of success. But if you look at some of the most successful human beings in history, guys,

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which game is it?

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Is it Mario?

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Was it we made it to the next level at least? Okay, so

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what was I saying something about Islam or something? Success and failure. Very good. While he has success in that level is good. Okay.

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So in any case, when we think about Ibrahim alayhis salaam being made homeless because he was kicked out of his house,

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when we think of him as someone who's wandering the desert and going from town to town,

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on not having any assets to his name.

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When we think of Rasulullah, sallAllahu, alayhi wasallam, being expelled from Makkah, deported, essentially, when we think of him living out of a cave, for a good year,

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when we think of the bankruptcy of the companions, were there even the messenger himself SallAllahu wasallam, tying stones to his belly. Anybody else starving anybody else, you are down the street and somebody doesn't have a home. The picture in your mind is not success.

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Anybody else who's been kicked out of their home, you don't think of success. As a matter of fact, even about a previous Prophet, people said, contact fina module one.

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We used to have so much hopes in you, you had a bright future, what have you done with your future, you become such a failure. They said to a prophet.

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You see, because their definition of success still hold. And according to their definition, this is a huge failure. You'll find people in your own family among your circle of friends, maybe you're not that religious, maybe you you know, you don't pray five times, or you don't know much about Islam, or you don't dress so Islamically or whatever it may be. And you start maybe even learning a little bit about Islam. Or just showing a little bit of curiosity about Assam. And people around you start thinking you're failing in life, you're you're you're not cool anymore. You've lost out on something you become weird. You're not as acceptable as you once were. There is some sort of a loss associated

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with coming close to Islam, even if a little bit, even if and the more they see you as serious about religion, the more of a loser you are, the more of a loser you are. And that's the story of human history. The Prophet will tell us himself Salallahu Alaihe Salam, but Al Islam or even for sale, we'll do Honeybun autobody, Laura, Islam began as something weird, something strange people said, What do you mean, this is success? What we've been doing is all failure and what you've come with a success come on. This is this is what you mean. This is how you want us to live our life. And Allah says one day, the Prophet says one day it will come back as something strange. In other words, when

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Islam first came people of Makkah thought it was strange, it was weird. What are you talking about? But once Islam became a global power, it was the popular thing. It was the cool thing to be Muslim, actually, at one point when the Muslims were in power. But now we find ourselves at a time where even within a Muslim family, somebody going back towards Islam is becoming what again, the strange one, the weird one, it's associated with some kind of loss. In many countries in the Muslim world, people are afraid that their young young sons and daughters might become religious, because if they do, that means they won't get good jobs, they won't have good careers, they won't get a good

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education, they will become fanatics, they will become crazy. All these fears are there that they will lose out on life if they get close to Islam. And though in some at some level, I sympathize with that fear, because there's a lot of fanaticism out there, there is but to take all of Islam and say if you become anywhere close to this day, and if I see you praying five times, or if you start if I started, start noticing that you're not wearing the tight clothes that you once wore, and that's not a good thing. You're becoming too extreme, you're too hard on yourself. And you start seeing that you're missing out on life or you're in a state of loss than your definition of loss and

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failure is not based on sort of philosophy. That worldview hasn't been established. You see, Islam today has become a label. We carry the name we carry Muslim names. We celebrate Eid, we show up for Juma we do certain rituals like the Christians do their rituals. And the Jews do their rituals. They have their Sabbath, they have their Sunday we have our Friday, we eat the halal food, more good. Bass, basically Islam has become just a few things that we do. But practically the way we see life, the way we view the world has not changed at all from it's not different from anybody else. They have certain definitions of success and failure and ours are identical. We consider the same, the

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very same thing success and failure as our non Muslim colleagues. As our Christian Jewish, atheist, Hindu, Buddhist, agnostic friends, they have that same view, we have that same view. We haven't actually seen the world any differently. Islam has been reduced to certain rituals.

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Not a way of seeing the world. The Quran first came to change the way we see the world. Everything else is secondary. The primary is the way you see the world changes. That's the point of Satellizer its function is to make you see the world from the Quran is lens. That's what its purpose is and I told you at the end of the day, all it is, is one single sentence