By Dr Sara Saigol
A review on Ebrahim Rasool's online talk, 'Our Ramadan Conversation with God under conditions of Danger' from 'Pearls of Wisdom for the whole Family.'
Ebrahim Rasool was involved in the South African struggle against Apartheid where he was imprisoned and there met Nelson Mandela. He combined his striving for justice with the inspiration of Islamic values.
Ebrahim Rasool led a wonderful Masterclass for ISB where he started by talking about
"Surely We created man of the best stature
Then we reduced him to the lowest of the low"
Humans have the ability to rise or to fall through our own faith and our consequent actions.
We need to govern our own souls and conquer our own state of weakness in order to rise and soar.
We can do that now in Ramadan. This terrible virus has presented an opportunity of solitude akin to Muhammad saw's refuge in the cave of Hira or Musa AS who sought solace in the deserts to escape his terrible predicament.
Now is the time for The Qur'an. Perhaps this Ramadan can be a Ramadan like no other.
Ebrahim Rasool focussed on how we should try to rise at night to recite Qur'an in slow rhythmic tones. The rush of daily business in not conducive for spiritual polishing and nurturing nor is the rushing tongue conducive to God's beautiful words.
Here he relayed to us his 4 months in solitary confinement; held by the Apartheid regime. He showed us the very Qur'an he read; his only distraction, thumbed and scribbled on that saved him from insanity. He memorised verses, reflected on verses and sought new meanings other than the ones he expected to find.
Allah is with us in times of trial and terror, he reminded us. Yet in our rush to speak to Our Creator, we may forget to listen. Here we risk missing the clarity of Allah's responses; we are too engrossed within our own monologue to hear. We bring to mind the first half of this verse below.......yet risk forgetting to listen, with a will.
“When My servants ask about Me, I am indeed close to them. I listen to the prayer of every supplicant, when he calls on Me. Let them also, with a will, listen to My call, and believe in Me, so that they may walk in the right way.” (Quran 2:186)
A Hadith Qudsi states "Verily, My Mercy prevails over My Wrath."
Allah asks for our love first and foremost, not our fear.
Let us re-find the gentleness of Allah.
Let us find the Mercy and Healing of the Qur'an.
“And We reveal of the Quran that which is a healing and a mercy for believers though it increases the evildoers in naught save ruin.” (Al-Israa' 17:82)
Let us bring the Rahma and Shifa of the Qur'an to the world.