Tenfold Reward, The Quest, Accomplishment
Issue 602 » October 8, 2010 - Shawwal 29, 1431
Al-Anam (The Cattle) Chapter 6: Verse 160
"He who does good shall have ten times as much to his credit; he who does evil shall only be recompensed according to his evil. No wrong shall be done unto any of them."
Contained in the above passage is a great glad tiding. The verse reflects Allah's overflowing mercy and His great blessing to weak and mortal man. Were Allah to punish man tenfold for his misdeeds, man's fate would have been doomed long ago. For man commits more sins than he does good. Out of His immense grace, however, Allah has devised different norms for good and evil deeds.
Allah performs this great favour to man in the face of the undeniable truth that it is He Who has brought man into being out of nothing and blessed him with all faculties - physical, mental and spiritual. Yet man disobeys Him. Notwithstanding this provocation, Allah does not punish man instantly, tearing him into pieces, which would rule out any further disobedience on man's part once and for all. Allah is within His right to mete out exemplary punishment to erring man, yet He comforts man in telling him that he will not be wronged.
"Guidance from the Holy Quran" - Sayyid Abul Hasan Ali Nadwi, pp. 224, 225
The Prophet's (peace be upon him) first words on arriving at Quba (on his emigration from the city of Makkah to Madinah) informed the Muslims of their basic responsibilities: "Spread peace [salam], feed the hungry, honour kinship ties, pray while people sleep, you shall enter paradise in peace [bisalam]." [Ibn Hisham]
The two references to peace, at the beginning and at the end of his address, point to how the Prophet wished his Companions to understand their settlement in their new city. Caring for the poor and honouring the kinship ties appear as reminders of the ethical basis of the Muslim presence, which each believer must pledge to permanently respect. Night prayer - "while people sleep" - provides the heart with the strength and serenity in faith that make it possible to fulfill the requirements of respecting ethics and of spreading peace. This quest for inner peace (alone, but in the warm light of one's family's love) is the path the believer must follow to be able to spread peace in the world and serve the poorest people.
"In The Footsteps of The Prophet" - Tariq Ramadan, pp. 87, 88
An Islamic society can be built only by Islamic personalities. However, one cannot build an Islamic society by merely knowing the stories and life histories of great Muslims of the past. The early Muslims had the vision and the courage to build a system within the framework of Divine revelations that would serve long after they had departed. Yet, there are some today who, while working to revive the Islamic teachings, seek the fulfilment of their destiny and belief by living in and for the past, blindly following their leaders and ignoring their individual prerogative and responsibility of choice. Malik Bennabi, has said in this regard: 'The result has been to walk towards the future with backs turned to it and eyes fixed on the past in search of a faded glory, instead of seeking to build a new order, to which glory will come by right of accomplishment and not by right of inheritance.'
When we only dream of the past, we fail to build for the future and our precious present passes by. Accomplishment and success are a result of preparing for the future without breaking the faith and contact with the past, but also realising that constructive work can only be done in the present. Tomorrow never comes and yesterday never returns.
Islam: The Way of Revival,"The Islamic Personality" - Mahmud Rashdan, p. 232