Norwich Jumu’ah Khutbah

6th August 2021 / 26th Dhul Hijjah 1442

Recently we mentioned a most important ayah from Surah adh-Dhariah in Allah’s book,        

بعد أعوذ بالله من الشيطان الرجيم  

56  I did not create jinn and man except to worship Me.

This reminds us, firstly, that we, that is, Jinn and Men, are Allah’s creation, with no say in our coming into existence or departure, leaving us without doubt about our origins, and clarifying that our parents are not the initiators of our arrival, and, secondly, why we are here.

The universe and our world, including the Jinn were already created by Allah before Adam’s mud was invested with spirit, and by this introduction Allah’s purpose was complete. He says,

بعد أعوذ بالله من الشيطان الرجيم  

44  The seven heavens and the earth and everyone in them glorify Him.

There is nothing which does not glorify His praise.

But you do not understand their glorification.

He is All-Forbearing, Ever-Forgiving. 17:44

Everything of its nature glorifies Allah, which is what it was created to do, but not until Abu al-Bashir was there a part of creation that could appreciate what the Creator had done because Allah taught him what even the angels did not know, and the Jinn did not understand. Knowing the names of things and this inherent ability to communicate with language makes man the crown of creation, its highest point and the locus of the fulfilling of Allah’s intention with creation.

It is ‘Ibadah, knowing worship, coming as is does with the dual possibility of submitting or rebelling, that places the actions of men and jinn over the rest of creation and invests in man the position of Allah’s khalifah on the earth in His apparent absence. 

But, before we make Shaytan’s mistake of pride and arrogance, this honour of authority over creation, as with all honours, comes with responsibility. This elevation brings the task of representative authority. This power that man wields over the world is borrowed, lent to us by Allah, and anything borrowed has to be returned and appraised. The Kuffar have attributed this power to themselves and do not consider its Rightful Owner, so they will suffer when the time comes, and if the Muslims make the same mistake, they also will suffer. The Kuffar think they can cheat,  lie and cause havoc with impunity, hoping to get away with it, and some Muslims too; they may pray all the prayers but often they are quite happy to follow the Kuffar if it brings worldly success. 

أعوذ باالله من ذالك

What is this Khilafah that Allah has given us? It is to represent Him in this world in which He does not appear. This is where the ‘Ibadah comes in. ‘Ibadah is what the slave does, and representation means to carry out the wishes of the Master in His absence. Allah is our Master and has made no secret of his wishes. He has sent messengers and books from sayyidina Adam until sayyidina Muhammad brought Allah’s book and demonstrated how to live by it. 

Shaykh Muhammad ibn al-Habib, rahimahuAllah, says, in one of the Qasa’id from his illustrious Diwan;

وَارْكَبْ سفَيِنةَ سُنَََّةٍ تنَجْوُ بهَِا

وَاسْلُكْ سَبيِلَ رَئيِسِهِاَ فِي هَوَاهُ

Board the ship of the Sunna and you will be rescued in it

and travel the path of its captain in his love

This is a wonderful metaphor of the Shaykh, and apposite in our time. Don’t be like the son of sayyidina Nuh who thought he could escape what was going on around him by climbing a mountain. ‘Board the ship of the Sunnah and be rescued by it’. We live in a time of extreme darura, we are suffocating in a miasma of Riba, usury, the swamp that modern society emerges from, with its permeating stink. Don’t be fooled into thinking that it is a financial problem; it dictates government, social norms, health, entertainment, business and even the environment. Rasulullah  warned us during his time, about our time;

عن أبي هريرة رضي الله عنه أن النبي – صلى الله عليه وسلم – قال

”لَيَاتِيَنَّ عَلَى النَّاسِ زَمَانٌ لَا يَبْقَى أَحَدٌ إِلَّا  أَكَلَ الرِّبَا، فَإِن لَّمْ يَاكُلَهُ أَصَابَهُ مِنْ غُبَارِهُ“  

  رواه النسائي ، وأبو داود ، والإمام أحمد

From Abu Hurayra that the Prophet said, “A time will come when there will not be a person that does not consume usury, and even if he doesn’t consume it,  it’s dust will settle on him.”

It is the deluge of our time and there is only one ark, so ‘board the ship of the Sunnah and travel the path of its captain in his love’. The only appropriate response to the darura is to struggle against it in the way that Allah has shown us through His Messenger, and it is highly dangerous and selfish to accept it with a “Oh well! What can we do about it?” and carry on regardless. If you do not struggle to find the safety that Allah has designated as such, you will drown in the flood of modern life with all its destructive concern for so-called safety. If you wish to understand the society we are trapped in, realise that whatever it presents itself as, it is actually the opposite, i.e. safety = danger, reality = fantasy, truth = lies, etc.

بعد أعوذ بالله من الشيطان الرجيم 

28  When you and those with you 

are settled in the Ark, 

then say: ‘Praise be to Allah who has rescued us 

from the people of the dhalimun!’

29  And say: ‘O Lord, land me in a blessed landing-place.

You are the best Bringer to Land.'”

Hold fast to the people who gather together for the sake of Allah, not distracted by concern for their livelihoods, they are the ones who know they are supported by Allah, and will arrive in a blessed landing place.  

To continue the analogy further, if you are on board and you come across others struggling, drowning in this swirling sea of denial of the Truth, you are at least in the position of being able to hold out your hand of help to them. Remember, this is all Allah’s affair, and you are a speck in it, so do not bring your ant’s eye view to a matter over which you have no control and cannot possibly see the whole picture. ‘Board the ship of the sunnah and travel the path of its captain in his love.’ 

This mosque and its community were put here by Allah through the agency of Shaykh Dr. Abdalqadir as-Sufi, rahimahu Allah, and it doesn’t only serve the Muslim community, but it is a light in the city of Norwich. It is a place where His slaves worship Him and that ‘ibadah is a lighthouse to those looking for a safe haven. Nothing you do, remembering Allah, goes astray without effect. A kind gesture in the street may bring someone to Allah’s deen, even years down the line.

Khilafah relates to mankind as a whole but also communally and  individually, but it can only be successful if it is based upon knowledge of Allah. Indeed, how can you represent Him if you don’t know what He wants. No one, since the beginning of time until its end knows more than His Rasul and those who have followed him in knowledge and sincerity until now.

وقد قال صلى الله عليه وسلم في الحديث المشهور عن عبد الله بن عمر: سمعت رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم يقول: 

} كُلُّكُمْ رَاعٍ وَكُلُّكُمْ مَسْؤُولٌ عَنْ رَعِيَّتِهِ – فَالإِمَامِ رَاعٍ وَهُوَ مَسْؤُولٌ عَنْ رَعِيَّتِهِ – وَالرَّجُلُ رَاعٍ في أَهْلِهِ وَهُوَ مَسْؤُولٌ عَنْ رَعِيَّتِهِ – وَالمَرْأَةُ رَاعِيَةٌ فِي بَيْتِ زَوْجِهَا وَهِيَ مَسؤُولَةٌ عَنْ رَعِيَّتِهَا- وَالخَادَمُ رَاعٍ فِي مَالِ سَيِّدِهِ وَهُوَ مَسْؤُولٌ عَنْ رَعِيَّتِهِ – وَالرَّجُلُ رَاعٍ فِي مَالِ أَبِيهِ وَهُوَ مَسْؤُولٌ عَنْ رَعِيَّتِهِ – فَكُلُّكُمْ رَاعٍ وَكُلُّكُمْ مَسْؤُولٌ عَنْ رَعِيَّتِهِ {

Ibn ‘Umar reported that the Messenger of Allah said, “Each of you is a shepherd and each of you is responsible for those in his care. – The leader of a people is a shepherd and he is responsible for his subjects. – A man is the shepherd of his family and he is responsible for those in his care. A woman is the shepherdess of her husband’s house and she is responsible for those in her care. A servant is the shepherd of his master’s property and he is responsible for those in his care. A man is a shepherd of his father’s property and is responsible for that which is in his care. So each of you is a shepherd and each of you is responsible for those in his care.”

أقول قَوْلي هذا وَ أَسْتَغْفِرُ اللهَ لِي وَ لَكُم

 و لِسَائِرِ المُسْلِمينَ مِنْ كُلِّ ذَنْبٍ فَاسْتَغْفِرُهُ إنّهُ هُوَ لغَفُورُ لرَّحيم

SECOND KHUTBAH

الحمد لله  ربّ العالمين

الحمد لله الذي هدانا لهذا وما كنا لنهتدي لولا أن هدانا الله

لقد جاءت رسل ربنا بالحق

أشهد أن لا إله إلا الله و أشهد أنّ محمداً رسول الله

لا حول و لا قوّة إلا بالله عليّ العظيم

 

بعدأعوذباللهمنالشيطانالرجيم 

And We have sent down the Reminder to you

so that you can make clear to mankind

what has been sent down to them

so that perhaps they may reflect.

The Khilafah of man does not mean that man has a power separate form the power of Allah, as the Kuffar suppose; He has power over all things at all times, but, He has lent man some of His attributes to carry out His will, and man‘s ability to do this is contingent on His will, whether he obeys or rebels. This is what you are doing at every moment of your life, knowingly or in ignorance.

The Khalif is the Abd. He is the one who realises his complete powerlessness while holding power, thereby becoming the perfect tool of the Master, the Mawla. Indeed, this Arabic term can mean both slave and master. The least of obedience is being Muslim following what the Rasulullah demonstrated of the five obligations upon mankind, and this immediately places you next to your fellow Muslims, who are doing the same as you, which leads to a movement of the heart that connects you to them and all who went before, right back to that first community. This changes being told what to do into choosing to do what is in accord with the Command and pleasing to Allah. 

You are born into this world demanding the service of others; feed me, clean me, cuddle me, but as you grow it becomes more of an exchange; you help me and I‘ll help you, you like me and I‘ll like you, until, insha‘Allah, you begin to realise that fulfilment comes from serving others, and in truth, life doesn‘t really begin until this happens. Selfless concern and compassion for others mirrors Allah‘s concern for His creation and reminds others of His, , overarching mercy and compassion for His creation, and its light moves the hearts towards Him.

Like the spark that ignites the raging bush fire that sweeps all before it, destroying the decayed and decaying undergrowth; an utter destruction that releases dormant growth and heralds new life, so does the heart turned to Allah inspire those around it, who inspire those around them, smashing the chains of social conformity for the slavery of Allah‘s Deen. It is the implementation of, and obedience to, Allah‘s commands and the Rasul‘s example, that will change our world for the better; all else just adds to the degeneration of the human situation. Be clear in your everyday life; why are you doing what you are doing; are you striving to obey Allah; is your life bringing benefit to others. Don‘t worry about yourself, you are in Allah‘s care, concern yourself with the needs of others as those first generations did in Madinah al-Munawwarah, confident in Allah and His Rasul‘s compassion for you, but anxious for the well-being of others.

This khutbah on this blessed day, in this blessed month of Hajj, comes during this week of the death of the founder of this and other mosques, the leader of his people, from all over the world, a Muhyiddin, connecting the Ummah back to the Amal of Madinah, a man of the age and the future, the foremost Shaykh of the Shadhili/Darqawi tariqah, Shaykh Dr. Abdalqadir as-Sufi, may Allah reward his life with the illustrious company of the Rasul, Anbiyya, Shuhada, Sadiqin and Salihin, gazing on the Face of Allah eternally. May he be continually rewarded by the continuity of his teaching and guidance, through those who follow and emulate him until all is forgotten in the immensity of the Last Day.

Allahumma, Ya Allah. Help us fulfill our responsibilities in all aspects of our lives, to the point of Your pleasure, and that of Your Rasul, and the benefit of those in our care. Expand our hearts to include those who are pleasing to You with an Iman that feels the needs of others, and an ability to help them.

Bless and protect our Amir Abdalhakim and help him with good counsel and men of action and bless those who obey and help him. Bless all the Muslims of Norwich, fill our hearts with what is pleasing to You and Your Rasul, and make us lights for the people of this city.

Have mercy and protect the Ummah of the Rasul, raise it up over the Kuffar, protect it from the Munafiqin and frustrate Shaytan by our reliance upon You, Ya Allah. 

Ya Allah help the weak, poor and oppressed by the strong, wealthy and independent, and help those in poor health and make their difficulties and pain a means of Your mercy, forgiveness and pardon.

Allah forgive us, pardon us and grant us a glimpse of Your turning towards mankind with Your help and victory.

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