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The Best Time And Hadd - Square The Circle Please

Posted 29 December 2012 - 12:37 AM (#1) User is offline   Abu-Feizah 

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Salaam

I have been reflecting on a issue which I would respectfully like the community to help me with please.

1. We are told that the best of times is the time of the Beloved, followed by the time of the Sahaba followed by the time of those who follow the Sahaba

2. We also know that our Sharia has reached us via these chains

3. Amongst the framework of Sharia are the punishments prescribed by the Deen, for various transgressions

4. We are aware of these transgressions and the punishments they attract as these punishments were meted out to people in the time of the Beloved and the times immediately after.

5. If such punishments were meted out at the time of the sahaba then it follows that some of the Sahaba themselves must have transgressed in order to be the recipient of such punishment

6. Therefore how can we square this with the fact that this was the best of times in so far as, for example Hadd punishments are concerned?

I know we do not hold the akeedah of infallibility for the blessed companions, but my question is not really about infallibility, more about how we can accept both issues of best of times and accept that there were transgressions, as in my humble (and slightly confused mind now....) best of times should mean full compliance with sharia?

I hope my rambling makes sense to someone...I have no intention of causing offence or casting dispersion, so if my question is offensive I apologise.
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Haq Maula Ali!

Shaah ast hussain badshaah ast hussain, deen ast hussain deen panah ast hussain
Sar daad na daad dast dar dast-e-yazeed
haqqa ke bina la illah ast hussain!

___________________

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Posted 29 December 2012 - 01:45 AM (#2) User is offline   Mudassar-Rana 

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Unfortunately its presented in a manner that leads to fable and utopia. However if they werent punishments - from where would you have gotten the shariah? Or where would the great jurists have extracted their opinions from?

In reality when a revolutionary leader has a group of committed people with him they are numbered in their tens. This was the same with rasool e kareem s.a.w - i.e those who took to islam under the most severe torture and boycott. We read the story of the hijrah like a childrens book - and its hard to imagine or relate to what it was like.

For example what did syedna ali a.s - feel like lying in the bed waiting for the assassins? Or Abu Bakr r.a in the cave knowing that bounty hunters were behind them? Or what could the sahaba have felt when the opportunity arose to leave makkah, their families, their trade, their wealth, their homes etc ? Or for example when Khalid ibn Walid left his people and went towards Madina to accept islam - these are all revolutionary actions taken by men who were the bravest of men of their time simply because they chose hardship over ease. What did they see, or what compelled them that didnt compel abu lahab or abu jahal? Each human is a diverse being, some are guided by their lord some are not? If not why not? If so why so? Clearly guidance is from Allah so why would he guide outsiders to his prophet but not his 2 uncles? Surely their support would have been invaluable and would have made life a lot easier for rasool allah a.s ? When the Syrian Monk Bahira told Abu Talib a.s to look after his nephew as he was a prophet - surely he would have relayed this to his brothers and told them what he had seen and asked them to ease off?

In essence what i am trying to show is that in groups there are different dynamics at play. Those who sacrificed their everything for islam when it needed them are different humans to those that came to islam once the victory of islam over arabia was assured. Yes according to the simple definition of sahabiyat they are classed as sahabi's but they are not the same as those who held rasool allah a.s hand when no one did. I often wonder what motivated those 72 of madina who gave the initial bayah ? After all nabi a.s wasnt from them? In a tribal society they had no tribal bond with him. Infact even those that had tribal bond with him like his uncles severely abused, tortured him and his followers. So what are the reasons they accepted and Taif didnt?

In terms of moral righteousness can anyone say that the first 5 caliphs themselves were not just? You know even non muslims have stated how they see umar bin khattab r.a as a guide for leadership. I think it was Kofi Annan who highlighted the letter from Syedna Ali a.s to Malik Ashtar r.a as the best basis for a constitution. Upon the passing away of rasool e kareem s.a.w when the opportunity was there for the nascent state to be ripped apart by infighting - like it would be later - who else but Abu Bakr r.a could have held it firmly together with an iron fist. An iron fist that wasnt even in his nature - and his actions greatly surprised Hadhrat Umar r.a as well - but when it came to the seriousness of carrying out rasool allah a.s command abu bakr r.a was adamanat that it would be done to the letter of the law. ie sending out the military expedition under Osama which rasool allah a.s had prepared before passing away. Upon the advice of umar r.a to delay it so that insurgents could be dealt with he grabbed umar r.a beard and said should i delay what rasool allah a.s ordered?

In my mind without a shadow of doubt these were the greatest generation whose actions left so much case law for jurists to ponder - we could have another 1000 years and not do justice to these men.
my brothers are those who will believe in me, without having seen me.” [Ahmad, Musnad]

Jaag Muslmaan Jaag Muslmaan ... kitna naacho gai ghairon ki dhun par?Jis ummat mein rab ne sher paida kiye aaj wohi gheedar ka libaas apna muqaddar samjh bethi
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Posted 29 December 2012 - 02:13 AM (#3) User is offline   Abu-Feizah 

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Thank you MR

I agree with you on the points you have raised. This is also where my musings have lead me to. Would it be fair, therefore in your view to say that everyone one is equal, but some are more equal than others?

So it could be argued that the status of "sahabiat" can be equated (in our times) to the status of "iman" in the context that it is a "minimum" requirement. The actions of individuals after that entry point into islam is in reality that which defines the status of a sahabi - not the fact that he or she was blessed enough to be guided to Islam?


So I can see that the 10's or perhaps even the 100's who accepted islam in the initial stages, have a status due to the hardships they endured. but how many sahaba were there at the end of the prophetic rule? So when the Beloved tells us that the best of times is that initial time, it surely covers right upto the start of the Rule of Hazart Abu Bakr (RA)?- the sahaba numbered in their thousands at that time.

Should we therefore interpret this Hadith in the light of the view that in fact it is the earliest sahaba who were the best of companions, and this status is reduced as time goes on, due to the increasing ease with which islam can be accepted?
___________________

Haq Maula Ali!

Shaah ast hussain badshaah ast hussain, deen ast hussain deen panah ast hussain
Sar daad na daad dast dar dast-e-yazeed
haqqa ke bina la illah ast hussain!

___________________

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Posted 29 December 2012 - 02:54 AM (#4) User is offline   Mudassar-Rana 

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I dont think its our job to interpret hadith - its fraught with problems, nay big problems. for instance we could delve into something that is quite simple and be successful in garnering an interpretation but it then leads us to attempt to interpret things that we can get horribly wrong. Its enough for a jahil to open his mouth and cause havoc.

With regards to the best generation etc - i've tried to identify that if problems did occur then it was hardly ever due to those initial muslims. These were if you like the ideological muslims without a shadow of doubt. i.e there was nothing for them to gain by accepting islam. We can romanticise it by talking about noor etc but u know why didnt abu lahab see the noor, or the branches bowing etc. I think you have to have a little noor in your self to see the noor elsewhere. Hence my thoughts on why some are guided and others arent.

In my mind status accorded to when the person chose to support rasool a.s so yes without a doubt they are the best of humanity. Look at Bilal r.a Yasir, Sumayah r.a - who the hell is going to compete with these people. Imagine if you are yasir r.a and you have just accepted islam and see your wife tortured to death and then martyred yourself? I mean for their iman not to waiver is something i cant imagine. Or look at Uthman bin Affan r.a - there is a massive rebellion - you have the lion of allah a.s saying let me get rid of this problem but him saying no he cant bare blood against his name and thus giving his own neck? Or imam hassan a.s knowing full well that he was the righteous caliph, the prince of jannah, the son of the queen of jannah, the son of the lion of God, the grandson of the king of creation s.a.w - handing his right over to save the bloodshed of human beings. This is not the sunnah of ordinary leaders who let the poor die to preserve their throne. For the life me i cant recall seeing this sort of action apart from in this ummah. whether seen or unseen it is something in the shahadah that makes a person forsake all for rasool allah a.s

Later generations did relax their link simply because slowly but surely self interest came to the fore - which i shant blame anyone for - because its human nature. That is why the evil capitalist survives because it appeals to mans animal instincts.
my brothers are those who will believe in me, without having seen me.” [Ahmad, Musnad]

Jaag Muslmaan Jaag Muslmaan ... kitna naacho gai ghairon ki dhun par?Jis ummat mein rab ne sher paida kiye aaj wohi gheedar ka libaas apna muqaddar samjh bethi
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Posted 29 December 2012 - 03:23 AM (#5) User is offline   Abu-Feizah 

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Accepted.

So in essence you would argue that the actions of the earliest muslims means that their status is secured. Regardless of any shortfalls.

I agree with all of your examples, and there in indeed no comparison to those you have mentioned. So it is very easy for me to accept their status. I guess my question is really that does this extend to every single sahabi? I assume (and I may be wrong) but not all of the blessed companions will have made the same level of sacrifices. So I agree with you regarding those earliest muslims, who made the sacrifices and endured the hardships. I can see there contributions and readily understand them, allowing my mind to accept their status. What of those who did not make those sacrifices? and what if they erred?

I am happy to accept that they are all human and people make mistakes. I am happy also to accept, that those mistakes do not negate the status of sahbiyat.

This discussion leads me to think that perhaps the "best of times" means overall the best times due to the types of people who were around at that time - like those that you mentioned, and therefore overall, depsite others not making the same sacrifices etc, the net effect was one of enhancement of the growth of Islaam. This impetus then began to reduce over time as the earliest sahaba began to pass away, and then the generations after them etc, so the flame of islam which was ignited by the presence of the Beloved began to burn less strongly in the context that those personal experiences were no longer there to drive the "ideological" muslims as you described.

Thank you for your thoughts on this. I am happy you have helped me on this matter with your thoughtful views.

WS
___________________

Haq Maula Ali!

Shaah ast hussain badshaah ast hussain, deen ast hussain deen panah ast hussain
Sar daad na daad dast dar dast-e-yazeed
haqqa ke bina la illah ast hussain!

___________________

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Posted 29 December 2012 - 03:26 PM (#6) User is offline   Mudassar-Rana 

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I fully understand your basic premise i.e that if they were the best generation why did they err? I understand it from the quote attributed to syedna ali a.s - when he was teased by someone that umar r.a khilafat was a great one but yours is basically a mess. And he replied behind umar was men like me and behind me are men like you!

Hence it is quite simple to accept that the calibre of people did decline. And to be perfectly honest to have it at such a high level would be unnatural. Those early muslims were trained by the master not as we are taught about beard lengths and trouser lengths but in great details. Even Abu Huraira r.a said i acquired 2 types of knowledge from rasool allah a.s one i share the other i keep to myself. If i shared the other people would chop my head off! So it shows the depth the knowledge went to. Im always surprised when you read about the battle of khandaq and the muslims were digging a massive trench - rasool allah a.s struck stones and prophecised that muslims would conquer yemen, constantinople and rome. Hence you can imagine if these people werent privy to highest knowledge then they would have thought were about to be massacred by our local enemy and the prophet a.s is talking about rome and constantinople!

So once it is confirmed that great level of knowledge these men were privy to then naturally the next generation wouldnt have received all of this and thus the natural decline. If your talking about the mistakes about the 1st generation then for example even bibi ayesha r.a wanted to go back when she heard the dogs of hawab bark - i.e she had already been foretold by nabi a.s this would happen.

Every one of the sahaba ikram r.a.a were like us different human beings with different characeristics, with different personalities, different strengths and different weakenesses. But the man doing the moulding of them was the habib of allah a.s - hence they are the best generation and the barakah of this best of generation was seen for a thousand years.

Syedna umar r.a appointed amr bin aas as governer of egypt and asked him what would you do if a person steals in your wilayah and he said i would chop his hand off! Umar r.a replied if i find one person starving in your wilayah i will chop your neck off! Our poor fate is that mothers dont give birth to umar r.a any more!
my brothers are those who will believe in me, without having seen me.” [Ahmad, Musnad]

Jaag Muslmaan Jaag Muslmaan ... kitna naacho gai ghairon ki dhun par?Jis ummat mein rab ne sher paida kiye aaj wohi gheedar ka libaas apna muqaddar samjh bethi
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Posted 29 December 2012 - 11:09 PM (#7) User is offline   Abu-Feizah 

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View PostMudassar-Rana, on 29 December 2012 - 03:26 PM, said:


Syedna umar r.a appointed amr bin aas as governer of egypt and asked him what would you do if a person steals in your wilayah and he said i would chop his hand off! Umar r.a replied if i find one person starving in your wilayah i will chop your neck off! Our poor fate is that mothers dont give birth to umar r.a any more!


Alas if only our leaders now had the same ethos perhaps this Ummah of the Beloved would be in a better state...
___________________

Haq Maula Ali!

Shaah ast hussain badshaah ast hussain, deen ast hussain deen panah ast hussain
Sar daad na daad dast dar dast-e-yazeed
haqqa ke bina la illah ast hussain!

___________________

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 12:15 AM (#8) User is offline   Fatema-the-resplendent 

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Apologies for I haven't read all the responses or the dialogue.

I have often thought of this point myself, and realised that it is God-who has created humans that are weak, and who give in to their desires. We are not perfect from day one, remember the sin of Adam. I think when that period is referred to as the best period, or that Ummah as the best Ummah then this does not include human error as a premise for superiority; rather it takes into consideration collective God consciousness with regards to difficulties faced. Suffering and patience therefore have become the premise for elevation. It is important to note that even between the Sahabas there is a system of ranking heavily dependent on suffering and patience. Hz Abu Bakr siddique (r.a) is an example of that ranking. So it transpires that God elevates those who are patient in their sufferance, uses positivity as a means to elevate but not reject. Those who transgressed were still considered part of the collective goodness thus remained in the realms of companionship albeit lower ranked. This is the reason one must forgive those who seemingly have transgressed (from those times) in our eyes, as Humans are weak; to seek perfection is unjust.

Clearly this is NOT the case when attempts have been made to destroy morality and fairness. Then these people fall into the category of 'zalimun' and are ousted from the circle of collective consciousness as they seek to destroy the brotherhood and unity; the very thing which elevates also de-elevates.

This post has been edited by Fatema-the-resplendent: 30 December 2012 - 12:15 AM

Lutf-e-mai tujh se kya kahu’n zahid
Haae kambakht tu ne pi hi nahi’n
-Daagh Dehlvi
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Posted 30 December 2012 - 04:03 AM (#9) User is offline   Abu-Feizah 

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Thank your for your comments sister FTR and brother MR

This discussion has been interesting. further reflection on your comments has led me to another thought.

So far we have framed the discussion on the actual value of the sacrifices made by the companions, and consequently argued that the relative level of sacrifice is reflective of the status, and therefore the collective efforts means that collectively, it was the best of times.

The consequence of this then becomes that as times become harder for the Ummah, and undoubtedly more difficulty is faced as we approach the end of times, is it conceivable that the level of sacrifice required of the Ummah exceeds even that which was required in the past? - we know of the major challenges of the end of times for the Muslims. Can these be equated to the challenges faced at the start of Islaam? If the answer is yes, then surely we can conclude that perhaps better generations are also to follow? - but this would then fly in the face of the Hadith surely?

However, when this thought popped into my head, I realised that the whole premise of the argument is wrong, and we have been focusing on the wrong reason for securing an understanding of the best of times.

I think that the reason could be, not due to patience, or sacrifice, as we have argued thus far.

In fact it is for a much simpler reason. It was the best of times because the Prophet was amongst them. Even if there were no sacrifices, no heartache, no martyrs, it would have remained the best of times, as this is the only variable which cannot be replicated. Difficulties, trials, tribulations can all be replicated and exceeded. However the thing that the Ummah will never have amongst itself again until the day of judgement is the presence of the Beloved.

So the time that was the time of the Beloved is the best of time. Followed by the time that was closest to Him.

This argument in my humble mind means that there is no circle to square as the mistakes or errors of any group of people does not define the time. It allows us to accept the trangressions of any of the sahaba - early or late, as the status of the time is not contingent upon the muslims of the time, rather only contingent on the closeness to the Beloved.


WS
___________________

Haq Maula Ali!

Shaah ast hussain badshaah ast hussain, deen ast hussain deen panah ast hussain
Sar daad na daad dast dar dast-e-yazeed
haqqa ke bina la illah ast hussain!

___________________

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