For the last (almost) two weeks, a gathering of “religious scholars” has been staging a sit-in at the Faizabad intersection, blocking Islamabad Highway.
The protesters claim to be gathered to uphold the sanctity of Islam and the honour of our beloved Prophet, Muhammad (S.A.W).
However, as a Muslim, a citizen of Pakistan and a resident of Islamabad, I can’t help but notice how these individuals are actually negating the traditions of Holy Prophet (S.A.W) and bringing a bad name to Muslims across the board.
How, you ask? Let me elaborate my observation with five traditions (i.e. ahadith) of the Holy Prophet (S.A.W).
Respect for Human Life
The Holy Prophet (S.A.W) said, “Verily, the most tyrannical of people to Allah the Exalted is he who kills those who did not fight him, or he demands the blood feuds of ignorance be settled by the people of Islam, or he claims his eyes have seen in a dream what they did not see.”
The first part of this saying of the Holy Prophet (S.A.W) is of special significance vis-a-vis the Faizabad sit-in. I say this because the life of a child was lost because the protesters refused to give way to an ambulance.
How can someone claim to be a Muslim and a dedicated follower of the beloved Prophet (S.A.W) when s/he has no regard for human life?
How could the protesters not allow an ambulance with a child fighting for his life in it to pass when they were gathered for the very purpose of upholding the honour and teachings of Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W)?
Creating Ease for Fellow Humans
The life of the Holy Messenger (S.A.W) is primarily a source of teaching Muslims how to create comfort and ease for others.
The Holy Prophet (S.A.W) is reported to have said, “Allah likes for this nation ease and hates for it hardship and adversity.”
And again, “… Allah did not send me to be harsh, or cause harm, but He sent me to teach and make things easy.”
The protest has made the lives of the residents of Islamabad and Rawalpindi anything but easy. Quite on the contrary, it has restricted people’s mobility, affected their livelihoods and created a sense of insecurity.
How then can these people claim to be the followers of our peace-loving Prophet (S.A.W)?
Keeping the Heart Free from Malice
The Messenger of Allah (S.A.W) said to Hazrat Anas (R.A), “Son, if you are able to keep your heart from morning till night and from night till morning free from malice towards anyone;” then he said, “Oh! My son, this is one of my laws, and he who loves my laws loves me.”
The sit-in hence far has been nothing except a show of malice against more people than one can count! How can these people say that they love our Prophet (S.A.W) when they refuse to adhere to his sayings?
A Perfect Muslim is one from whose tongue and hands mankind is safe.
This oft repeated tradition of the Holy Prophet (S.A.W) describes a perfect Muslim as someone whose tongue and hands do not become a source of grief for others.
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However, not only are the protesters using the worst possible language one can think of, they are also – as pointed out by district administration – laced with weapons and stones. The protesters are also responsible for injuring at least three police officers in the line of their duty.
The life of our beloved Prophet (S.A.W) has been a lesson in love and respect. The protesters, on the other hand seem to have learnt nothing from the life and lessons of Holy Prophet (S.A.W).
Abstinence from Foul Language
There are many traditions of the Messenger of Allah (S.A.W) in which he explicitly denounces the use of curse words and all forms of foul language.
Hazrat Anas bin Malik said, “The Prophet (S.A.W) was not one who would abuse (others) or say obscene words, or curse (others)…”
In fact so strictly have Muslims been warned against the use of foul language that a saying of Holy Prophet (S.A.W) as reported in Sahih Muslim states, “The inmates of Hell are of five types….” And among them he mentioned “…the miser, the liar and those who are in the habit of abusing people and using obscene and foul language.”
In the last twelve days or so we have all seen a number of videos in which these so-called “religious people” are using the most obscene of words to defame others. So filthy is their choice of words that as a Muslim I wish they would stop associating themselves with my dear Prophet (S.A.W).
To anyone reading this I have but one request: if you truly want to honour the traditions of Holy Prophet (S.A.W), please step away from hatred, from intolerance and especially those people who wrongfully exploit Islam for their own vested agendas. Unless, we as Muslims reclaim our identity, we will forever struggle for peace and prosperity in our land.
May Allah bless us all with good sense!