Seeing the Bigger Picture: The Eternal Consequences of Faith–Eid Sermon by Sh. Faraz Rabbani

In this Eid reminder, Shaykh Faraz Rabbani advises us to look beyond the pain, suffering and hardship we encounter to see the true purpose and potential of our creation. Touching on key Quranic verses, he counsels us to look at the bigger picture.

We see so much difficulty in our lives. We deal with our weaknesses, failings and challenges. One of the greatest blessings we have, is be becoming aware of others people’s suffering. This is not so we can be afraid, but so that we can do something about it. The point of hearing is not to listen, to point is to act.

The believer sees every situation as an opportunity to do good and get closer to Allah. Our approach should not be one of analysis and criticism, but one of action. After all, the purpose of every trial is to test whom will be the best in action.

What is the potential of the human being? To know one’s Lord, and to do good.

We are told in the Qur’an, “Is not Allah the Most Wise of the Wise?” This tells us that everything that Allah does is for a reason, and it is up to us to fulfil our potential as human beings.

Allah repeatedly reminds us to seek forgiveness. However, it is not a case where we ask, and He may forgive, or may not. He says, “Call upon Me, and I will surely grant you.” The forgiveness is waiting, and Paradise is waiting. Therefore, we ask Allah to help us fulfil our potential and make us from those who do good.

There is a Russian saying, “Yesterday was bad, today is awful, and tomorrow will be even worse.” However, that is not how a believer thinks. Allah has promised us Paradise, where all the pain and brokenness will be removed. We should let go of any negativity we have, and be grateful for these immense blessings.

Resources for Seekers

Reviving the Sunnah of Being Optimistic, by Shaykh Ahmed Abdo

How did the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him, remain optimistic throughout the years of trial and tribulation, which he, his family and companions endured?

Shaykh Ahmed Abdo presents an uplifting insight at this lecture held at Lakemba Mosque in Sydney, Australia.

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Resources for seekers

Beware of Making Eid Boring, by Ustadh Salman Younas

Eid is just around the corner and Ustadh Salman Younas has an important message for everyone, especially for those with children: Eid is not meant to be boring and dull.

Eid is meant to be a celebration. It is a perfect opportunity for us to show our children how our religion balances between worship and leisurely entertainment. We begin our day with charity, prayer, and supplication and continue it with food, family, and fun.
Historically, Eid was celebrated on a grand scale in the Islamic world. During the Abbasid period, the viziers and military soldiers would march in procession wearing their best clothing accompanied by torchbearers. Mosques, palaces, and even boats on the dock would be decorated and illuminated with lights. Tables would be set out for people to indulge in a variety of foods and sweets. People would sing, exchange gifts, visit family, and have an enjoyable time. In some periods, there would be firework displays as well and a number of other entertaining activities.

If you want to be a bore on Eid, then don’t be surprised when your children grow up with zero excitement and love for this prophetic tradition. As the scholar Abu’l Abbas al-Azafi (d. 633/1266) stated, “festivals are an occasion of delight, joys, permissible play, and licit amusement.” But he also noticed that many Muslim children during his time actually grew up as admirers and enthusiasts of Christian holidays/festivals because they were frankly more memorable and fun for them. Sound familiar? Yup, and this is not someone from the 21st century or the 20th century speaking, but a religious scholar from the 13th century.
If you make Eid memorable for your children by partaking in things that elicit happiness and jubilation, it will become endearing to them. So, don’t just pray the Eid prayer while your family sleeps at home and then go off to work. Don’t have your children spend Eid alone. Don’t just hand your children 20 dollars as “Eidi” and be done with it. Take a day or two off and make it something that they enjoy, remember, and can’t wait to experience again.
P.S. for those wondering, al-Azafi did try to “lecture” and “explain” to those children who adored Christian festivals that they had their own festivals. Did it work? Nope. Why? Because it is the actual experience that counts.

Follow Ustadh Salman Younas on Facebook.

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