Monday, July 12, 2010

How Do You Feel as a Student of Knowledge?

Was salaatu was salaam.

Indeed for a person like me who left his family for almost four years to seek sacred knowledge then returns to meet them all in good health must be happy and grateful to ALLAH for HIS mercies showered upon them all. This is the case with me and at the same time it is a contradiction that I am yet to come to terms with.

It is two weeks since I arrived and I have used all my days to study this environment that has been like an alma Mata to me if I have to describe it like a school. I have seen so many things that my eyes can’t bear, I have heard so many things that are too heavy for my ears, I have forcefully absorbed in my mind so many things that my mind can’t absorb.

I now live a life of an unhappy young man having so many plans in the inside but feels they could die inside of him if things continue the way they are. I feel sad and regret why I ever came back and thought I shouldn’t have thought of ever coming back.

I ask myself if it was a crime for me to make the decision of coming back home to have a little break with my family before continuing my studies again. My heart aches, it bleeds and shed tears everyday I wake up and find things the way I saw them the previous day. So I pray for night everyday to come so that when I sleep, I forget about all these things but when the day breaks, it brings back the sad moments I run away from.

I look at all of these as tests from ALLAH but wonder if I can bear and carry them. I take solace to the fact that ALLAH tells us that ‘’He will never place a burden on any soul except that it can bear and carry it’’.

I shouldn’t be writing and posting this on this blog as it is something personal but how long will I keep these and kill myself softly? A friend who came welcoming me yesterday after hearing of my arrival asked me how am I and how I feel here. I told him I am unhappy and sad. He was the first person I told about how I feel since I came. He wondered why I should be feeling the way I feel but couldn’t understand. I told him that this is a kind of feeling I can’t explain nor put into writing. The only word I could use to let him know how I feel is that I am sad and in pains. He pressed on to know what thing in particular hurts me. For me, it’s not about a particular but everything has turned too bad for me.

My writing this is just to ease myself of this unhappiness and sadness that I have been nursing since my arrival. This is the only way I can really express how I feel in few lines without going into details.

Can I really mention all that has been causing this unhappy state of mine? It is so difficult to express how much I feel and trying to explain this will be like stabbing myself in the back if I try to start listing everything or discussing about them. Just wanting my readers to have a clue of what I am passing through so I have decided to put it down in a way that one can have an idea of this unfortunate state.

How can you imagine your friend you left in a very beautiful Islamic state and when you return, he gives you justification for why he shakes hands with ladies in his new place of work and why hugging may even be necessary.

You hear that boys who used to be small but now grown and big living around your neighbourhood have suddenly turned hardcore smokers and consumers of beer.

You hear that flirting around by both boys and girls is a norm and trying to preach against it, you are seen as old school.

Older women come to you to welcome you and they start by hugging you and when you try to tactically keep away from it and smile over it, they think you are stupid and tell you that we are like mothers to you even if they are non mahrams. When you try to explain shari’ah rulings on such issues to them they see you as extreme.

You try to preach true deen and keeping away from innovations since Islaam is so flexible and fits in time, space and states but they think you are wahhabi.

You dress in your turban, nicely sewn jubba and burdah they just call you Taliban and a suicide attacker especially when you try to hug your old time friends. How unfortunate this is when a fellow Muslim says it to the other and when they do such mockery they laugh it off.

You try to advise people on how to use their time, love the best of mankind than anyone else especially like football stars they think you are making football haraam.

You find young people who were supposed to be prospective da’wah experts or make beautiful Islam homes left the deen for another deen.

You see ignorant people are now source of references for Islamic issues. They become Muftis of their own standard and no one question them of their authorization. They sell the deen for money.

You sit with a friend and he starts blasting Bob Marley and you tell him to do you a favour by turning it off, he tells you he doesn’t believe listening to such Music is haraam because the lyrics are so meaningful. He says if you think it is haraam then provide him with proofs since he has unable to get proofs from the local Shuyukh.

You listen to people talk about Islaam and try to shun textual evidences since their logic surpasses these evidences and feel they should apply their personal rulings according to their own rational mind and the way their interpretation soothes their minds.

You see people you try to show love look down at you and think you feeling shoulder squared because you traveled abroad to seek knowledge.

You see people think after your studying sacred knowledge, you have no better future for yourself. Those who appreciate your seeking sacred knowledge are those that are not ready to work with you.

You see young boys and girls been very disrespectful to their parents and address them in high tone.

You go to your local mosques and see the newly selected Imaams have no knowledge of qira’ah and how to apply the rules in their solah or even the pillars of solah. You are forced to go back home to repeat a solah that you have already prayed in the mosque except you are fortunate to be made Imaam because you have studied small books on fiqh.

I can go on and on mentioning so many of these things but when I attempt it, it only but hurts. I smile but inside of me I cry, I laugh but inside of me I weep. Must things continue this way? Will my little contribution I intend or I try to put in count? Can a one man correct all of these flaws?

I sent a friend we studied together with in Syria an email informing about my arrival and the response I got is:
Im happy that yr back with yr family , alhamdulilah. yeah i can understand the happiness yr feeling at the moment. and the sadness that shortly comes with it as you realize that you have changed so drastically that you can’t relate to yr family or friends anymore. you see that they are exactly where they were and the same people with the same ideas or atleast thats how i feel. ive just started to get back on my feet, believe it or not since i came i didn’t even go out side my house , i just slowly started to 2 weeks ago. i was upset that i was here and sad i couldnt leave to where i was happy, frustrated fighting peoples’ ideas if right, wrong ,islamic and unislamic and most times it was just ridiculous.i didnt talk or socialize with people......i was just in my room holding on to what little memory i had of syria and my life before i came here. but you get over things even the most saddest with time like i have. i try to give back and make some impact on people and ive started with the youth.

For this person, a new page has already been pulled out. I am trying to learn from this example because it is a picture of how I feel though not exactly. I said maybe this is not something peculiar to me but maybe happens other places. The only happiness I have now is when I try to explain the deen to few friends who spend little time with me everyday.

AlhamduliLLAH, I have been able to start a small fiqh class, my class on shamaail will start soon, my Arabic class begins in few days. Insha ALLAH may HE makes these that which will bring succour, joy and happiness to my life and many others around us.

Your duas and nasiha will surely be of help. May ALLAH join us all with those we love.
Was salla ALLAHU ‘alaa Muhammad wa aalhi was sallam.


Farzeen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
sarah said...

Assalam alaikum dear brother in Islam. Sincerity is not an easy thing; many think it is very easy, that they are being honest, but no; sidq is a hard maqam, and to me your words are those of the sadiq. Alhamdulillah for that.
Your pain sounds like bereavement, having left what is true and light for that which is false and dark. InshAllah Allah Azawajal in His Infinite Mercy will make the transition easier for you. I don't know about these things but I would imagine that that ease might be manifest through obedience, obedience in teaching everything that you have learned. May you taste His Satisfaction with you through your obedience, may you feel the faraj through Him, and leave the yearning for the place in which you found Him and His Deen.
We are in the Middle East, and for ten years; I imagine if I were to have to return to the West I would be in a much worse state than you. That is why I feel for you, because I don't want this test for myself or my children. May you pass the test that I would certainly fail.
May Allah Azawajal give you all the tawfiq and ease in spreading the Deen, which is obedience to His Command, and not following one's own opinion, which is something so prevalent as you have seen.
your sister in Islam

basuappear said...

Your pain is easy to sense in your writings.We pray Allah makes your return easy for you. Everything that disheartens you in your environment is a testimony as to how much those around you need you, and you should try to take this as a reminder of why you so much wanted to pursue the study of traditional Islam in the first place. Was it not because of its absence in your home country?
Having said that, I know too well how difficult it is to return after being in the sweet company that you have tasted. Be patient in sha Allah.
Your sister.