Minute with a Muslim #037 – How do YOU worship Allah
Channel: Tom Facchine
File Size: 8.06MB
If you boil down, let's say the purpose of life, do you go through the whole court and all 604 pages 114 chapters of the Quran, and you boy, and you try to find, what does the Quran tell me is the purpose of life, you can find three things.
And they're sequential. The first thing is actually livelihood. And that's something that I think surprises a lot of people, because a lot of people who come from sort of either a Christian background, or certain types of Christianity, maybe there's an association of the flesh, right, and everything to do with the flesh is kind of damned, and not good and stuff like that. We don't really have that in Assam, thankfully, livelihood is a very, very important part of your life. And that has to do with, you know, the food part, and the coffee and the water and all those sorts of things that make up your normal human existence. Maybe we can say your bodily existence, that's a purpose that's
found in the Quran. But there's more to life than that, as the Koran would tell us, or how Allah would tell us in the Quran, the second purpose that we can find in the Koran, it has to do with gratitude. And so it naturally flows from the first one. Because when you're going about making your livelihood, you know, procuring your needs, doing all the things that you want, sometimes you get what you want, and sometimes you don't. And so when you get what you want, there should be some sort of gratitude, there should be some object of gratitude, some way for you to express that you're really thankful that, you know, it could have been otherwise you could have left deprived. But in
fact, you weren't, you were satisfied, you were satiated, you got what you needed, you got what you wanted. So this has to do with worship. That's the second purpose. But then even beyond that, there's a third purpose that we can find from the Koran. And that is stewardship.
Because once we have kind of gotten what we need, secured our livelihood, and we've expressed our gratitude for it, okay, then well, then there's the needs of others.
Other people have to get their livelihood and they have to procure what they need. And so there's an aspect in which we have to take care of everybody else. And be aware of everybody else's needs. And once
these three purposes that are all in the Quran, if you want the references, you can come to me later, they really correspond well to a story of the Prophet Mohammed, how they set up the Sudan, where he explained the kind of three levels of our religion. So the whole thing someone comes to the Prophet it so that's that, and they asked him, Mohammed, explain to me what is Islam?
And he answers and he says, he goes through what's known as the five pillars of Islam, which we can translate maybe as submission, it kind of has to do with the outward conformity kind of like the bare bones, bare minimum sort of practice of this religion. It's made up of five things. Okay. There's the testimony of faith. There's the ritual prayer, there's fasting, Ramadan, there's a chi which is kind of like giving off a portion of your wealth if you qualify, and there's pilgrimage. That's what Islam is at the very, very, very base level. That's what it's about. Well, the question or wasn't done, the questioner said, Okay, tell me about faith. Tell me about Amen. This is a higher
level, and just doing the outside rituals. And so the Prophet Muhammad Ali said that Saddam, he responded, he reports Ebro, he replied, he responded, he said, Well, that's to believe in six things, we believe in the Creator. We believe in the angels, we believe in Revelation, the prophets, etc, etc, Destiny.
These sorts of things. That's level two, but there's one level left. And that's what's on all of the cards that's on your tables. That's a set, which we could translate, I think it has a better explanation in the brochure about excellence. Right? Striving, going above and beyond. But when he said this, he didn't just drop the word and leave it there. He actually gave a really, really interesting explanation. He said, that, what does it look like? What is excellence? What is SN?
It's to serve the Creator.
As if you see him.
And if you can't do that, then it's to serve the Creator, knowing that he sees you. Because we believe in our tradition that having some omnipotent creator, right with consequences that might or might not be eternal, is very important to keeping people honest, and is very important to keeping people on the right way. Now, what's interesting if you notice something important about the quote I just mentioned, from the Prophet Mohammed, he said that excellence is either serving the Creator, as if you see him and if you can't, then doing it knowing that he sees you. That's sort of like I call it the cosmic cop. Sort of, you know, imagination of
what the Creator is, it's not all there is, it's actually not even the best. It's like bare minimum that some people out there need it, just so that they don't harm other people. But that's not what we're going for, we're going for something that's higher than that there's a higher motivation. And that is true devotion.
worshipping the Creator, as if you see him worshiping the Creator based off of fear. It's nothing compared to worshiping the Creator that's based out of love. Love is always higher love is always a better motivation. And that's what excellence looks like true excellence is serving the Creator out of that love. Now, what does it look like? Okay, that's a bunch of fancy theoretical speech. A couple stories. To illustrate this.
I had a teacher. When I was in Medina, I lived in Medina for five, six years.
And they told me a story. They said that them in there, this is actually very relevant to college students. So they were in school from the time that they were young. Okay. And they were always competing to be the best. And so whenever they would get their exams back in their grades, they would always sort of like, Oh, would you get the better than you this sort of thing. One day, they get their exams back, and they're all marked up or whatever. And one of the two had left an answer on his exam blank.
Now, this is very strange. And the friend had never known his friend to ever do this before. So he said, what's going on? How come I've never ever seen you leave an answer on an exam blank in your life? Why did you do it? He said, listen, when I was in the middle of the exam, I was thinking about what the answer could be. And while I was doing that, my pen rolled off my desk and fell, fell onto the floor. So I reached over to get my pen and my eyes happened to fall on the paper of my neighbor. All I saw was one word that was written on their paper, and the whole answer came back to me. And I was afraid. I was afraid that if I wrote down that answer, and got the points for the test, that I'd
be cheating, and that the Creator Allah wouldn't be happy with me. So I decided to leave it blank.
If you live in other places, you know, there's some crazy stories about this sort of stuff. One time there is a scholar in Saudi Arabia, who, someone gave him a car, you know, Saudis, oil, money, this sort of thing, right? So he's given literally the keys to a car. He tries to refuse so no, come on us too much. What do you guys do? But eventually they force him so he takes the keys. He's got his cars, a fancy car, I don't know Range Rover, Audi, something like that.
And then someone comes along 510 minutes later.
And they say, Hey, so on. So just got married. He's like, really? That's amazing news here. I got a gift for him.
And he gives the keys right back.
Excellence. No one's watching. No one knows. It's about you and about what you do, and hopefully doing things out of love.