Monthly Archives: June 2007

Correspondence with the late Brother Muhammad [I]

ADVICE TO A STUDENT IN AMERICA ON LIVING THE LIFE OF ISLAM

Assalam alaikum dear brother ___,

(From your email)
I realize that, of late, the level of purity in my thoughts and actions is
rapidly declining toward being more and more secular materialistic in
nature. I have a feeling that there is something fundamentally wrong with me
because I can no longer pray in deep contemplation, don’t act in sincere
honesty for Allah, and do not seek guidance from only Allah. I strongly feel
that I am overly exposed to such a secular social lifestyle, and that there
is hardly anything I do/hear/see that has spiritual value. Even when I do
things that might be considered beneficial, it still seems to take me
further from Allah than closer to Him. Some of those actions include reading
world news, studying maths, being nice and helpful to others, reading books,
etc. I so desperately hope that I don’t do further damage to my soul. One
main consequence is that I cannot fully focus when I study.

This feeling that I have is totally new to me. I definitely had not expected
to be in such a predicament. Perhaps you notice a serious flaw in me? (End
of your email)

I feel really sad to hear how you have been feeling. During our many talks I
think it would be true to say we became friends, besides the fact that your
father is my good friend also. The loss of faith is just about the saddest
thing that can happen to a Muslim. I wish you could feel how much I love
Allah and the wonderful Islam He gave us as the right way of life. Few
Muslims would know how attractive the ideas of secular materialism can be as
I have had the opportunity to experience for myself. It was not for feeble
reasons I was so convinced God did not exist at the time when I had for
years been beguiled by the attractiveness and seeming rightness of the basis
for secular materialism. If I had not been an objective scientist in the
extreme I could never have been able to fairly and rationally observe that
the undeniable necessary logical implications of modern science,
particularly modern physics, pointed so powerfully to the fact that God must
exist.

You would have to have available to you all the facts that I have gathered
over the many years of study to know how certain I am now that what exists
to support secular materialism is so paltry as to be embarrassing, and how
the totality of the facts and their implications proving the rightness of a
spiritual God-centered world is so overwhelming there is not even faint hope
that the acceptance of secular materialism could ever rise again. Much of
what I know that provides me with the most high degree of certainty that
secular materialism offers nothing but a path to hellfire is in the subtle
interconnections of facts existing within the sphere of all true knowledge,
but still I guess I am a bit surprised that what you have had the
opportunity to learn from me, although must less than the whole, was not
sufficient to provide you with more protection from the seduction of the
secular world.

For myself I don’t worry that my obligatory prayers are seldom times of
“deep contemplation” since the true depths of my contemplation take place as
in my mind as I delve into the intimate actions of Allah as He creates,
sustains, and directs His physical creation. Also late at night I have
conversations with Allah that might seem to some to be more appropriate to a
totally free and open discussion of the very closest friends. I think
sometimes we have the expectations of others determining for us what should
be determined only by our own souls. Then we have the effects of the
“secular social lifestyle” which can be a major trial for Muslims anywhere
along the path of spiritual progression. I am now Blessed with the
opportunity to isolate myself from direct interaction with most of secular
society. At times when I did not have this opportunity I had many times of
doubt as to whether, regardless of how committed I was to Islam, that I
could resist all that a secular society offered. I have become a much better
person, and a much better Muslim as I have had less and less direct contact
with the secular world.

In answer to your question, I am most pleased to be able to say I see no
major fault in you at all. I have mentioned the one thing that could be
considered a flaw and which could cause you some difficulty and that is the
fact that I see you making assumptions that are not the assumptions of
highest probability given the available data. It is hard to say how that can
be corrected, it takes a lot of objectivity, logic, and a standard which
gives a good understanding of what is most likely given the nature of our
world. To me this standard is now Islam, which I am convinced is by far the
most comprehensively good and right system of thought that that has ever
existed. That is the fair, honest, and positively motivational world view I
am always taking about.

Sometimes it might be true that ignorance is bliss. By this I mean that for
any Muslim the cultural and spiritual shock of moving from a more or less
Islamic environment (such as Malaysia) to one of the most powerful secular
materialistic environments that has ever existed is always going to be very
difficult to deal with. For someone who has accepted the truth and facts of
Islam without question they may be able to fall back upon this unthinking
certainty as their armour against wrong thought and wrong influence, but to
someone who has been somewhat of an intelligent, independent thinker and has
asked hard questions about those things that others never questioned they
would not have the same safety of certainty to fall back on. A God-centered
spiritual life is increasingly difficult to successfully achieve in the
world we have today. Ultimately no one but you can decide to walk that path.
Please know how sincerely I can say this to you, “Life with Islam is so much
better than life without Islam.”

I wish I could do more, but I can only pray that you will find something in
this message that touches both your heart and your reason in such a way that
it makes your relationship with Allah, and your life in Islam a little
easier.

Wasallam my very dear brother and friend, may Allah Bless you and be with
you during these difficult times.

muhd

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