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Thursday, October 1, 2020

Virtues and merits of Makkah

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Verily all praises are due to Allah. We praise Him, seek help from Him and seek His forgiveness, and we seek His protection from the evils of ourselves and from the evils of our actions. Whoever Allah guides, then there is no misguidance for him, and whoever is misguided, then there is no guidance for him. And I bear witness that there is no god but Allah alone. He has no partner. And I bear witness that Muhammad (sal-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) is His servant and messenger. May Allah send salutations on him and on his family and his companions, and may much peace be upon them all till the Day of judgement.

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O You who believe! Fear Allah as He should be feared, and die not except in a state of Islam. [Surah Aal-Imran (The Family of Imran) 3:102] 

 

O Mankind! Be dutiful to your Lord, Who created you from a single person (Adam), and from him (Adam) He created his wife [Hawwa (Eve)], and from them both He created many men and women; and fear Allah through whom you demand (your mutual rights), and (do not cut the relations of) the wombs (kinship). Surely, Allah is Ever an All- Watcher over you. [Surah An- Nisa’ (The Women) 4:1] 

O you who believe! Keep your duty to Allah and fear Him, and speak (always) the truth. He will direct you to do righteous good deeds and will forgive you your sins. And whosoever obeys Allah and His Messenger (sal-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam), he has indeed achieved a great achievement (i.e. he will be saved from the hell-fire and will be admitted into Paradise). [Surah Al-Ahzab (The Confederates) 33: 70-71]

“Indeed, the best of speech is the speech of Allaah and the best of guidance is the guidance of Muhammad (sal-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam). The worst of affairs are the newly invented matters and every newly invented matter is an innovation. Every innovation is a misguidance and every misguidance is in the hellfire”.

O slaves of Allah our sermon today is about Makkah. I did mention to you here that there are many amongst Muslims today who usually carry this notion that the people who are educated in Makkah want to modify our faith. For this reason, the khutbah for today is to inform you a little about what pertains to Makkah and Madina; so that you will become someone in whose heart Makkah would be sanctified. Makkah is the land that is far superior to any other land or country! Don’t you agree? And I don’t think a person would gain his or her education from Makkah and then use it to misguide the people particularly Muslims. Let us be very careful with our utterances and daily conversations. If you come to things concerning Makkah, you will find that it has many names and this has been established or affirmed by the Holy Qur’an. For something or a place to have different attributes and names, from what the scholars have indicated, shows the degree of importance that is attached to the said place or thing. For one name or one thing to be having so many names is a blessing. Therefore, Makkah has special names. Its first name is Makkah, and this is the name common to all of us today. Allah has also named it in the Holy Qur’an as ‘Mother of Towns’ (Ummul Qura). He the Almighty said: “And this (the Qur’an is a blessed Book which We have sent it down, confirming (the revelations) which came before it, so that you may warn the Mother of Towns (Makkah) and all those around it. [Surah Al-An’am (The Cattle) 6:92] 

All of the translators of the Holy Qur’an have agreed that “Umul Qura” is also the name of Makkah. They also call it “The City”. Allah Glorified, said: “I swear by the City (Makkah)” [Surah Al-Balad (The City—(Makkah) 90:1]. 

Again, it is called in the same surah as “This City of Security”. Allah May He be fully praised said: “By the fig, and the olive; By Mount Sinai; by this city of security”. [Surah At-Tin (The Fig) 95:1-3]. All these names refer to Makkah. And for one thing to be carrying so many names, actually shows its significance. That’s why Allah (subhanahu wata’ala) has several names and attributes amounting to 99 or more.  Why? The reason for this is He is the most worthy and supreme above everything. Makkah too doesn’t have a single name, it has scores of names. This is why we said this indicates its sacredness and sanctified nature. And this is for Makkah. It also has among its names as “A Place of Return (‘ma’ad’)”… Allah said: “Verily, He Who has given you (O Muhammad Salahu alayhe wasalam) the Qur’an (i.e. ordered you to act on its laws and to preach it to others) will surely bring you back to Ma’ad (a place of return, either to Makkah or to Paradise after your death). Say (O Muhammad salalahu alayhi wasalam): “My Lord is Aware of him who brings guidance, and of him who is in manifest error.” [Surah Al-Qasas (The Naration) 28:85] 

Ibn Abass (Radiyallahu Anhu) said ‘ma’ad here connotes Makkah. But what I want you (the congregation) to understand is that for a thing to presage many names tells a lot about its merits, weightiness and significance. That’s why if you go to Surah Al-Fatiha (the Opening-001) you will find out that it has many names, for example, ‘The Cure’, As-sab’al-mathani (the seven oft-repeated verses) et cetera. All of these are Fatiha’s names. This indicates that the name Fatiha is very important. For Allah to have many names, this goes to show how supreme Allah is. For Makkah to have numerous names also indicates that it is sacred, and it is a blessed city. Can’t you see the number of names given to leaders and presidents? Their names are usually many and lengthy, why?  This is to manifest that the ruler is a person of distinction, worthy and of great status. Therefore Makkah is having lots of names because it is an important, blessed and sanctified place on this earth. Yet some Muslims have the guts to say the people who have studied in Makkah return to misinform or deceive people. May Allah save us from such an accursed statement. Part of what is known about Makkah, is a land which is blessed. Allah said: “Verily, the first House (of worship) appointed for mankind was that at Bakkah (Makkah), full of blessing, and guidance for Al-‘Alamin (mankind and jinn)”. [Surah Aal-Imran (The Family of Imran) 3:96]. Do you know what is ‘baraka’ or blessing. If you hear baraka, it means something which grows, extends, enlarges and expands into maturity. That’s what is referred to in the Arabic language as ‘baraka’. It is also established that it refers to something that continues. Then what is this thing in Makkah which matures and becomes great? This thing in Makkah that had been staying there forever, the scholars had explained it. And the thing that has been there is ‘baraka’ in the livelihoods of the people of Makkah. Allah himself has put ‘baraka in the city. That’s why whenever you visit the city you will see fruits whose seasons were long over. But this is not a new occurrence in this age and time since someone could opinionate that it is because of the recent developments and revolutions in travel as planes, ships, trains and vehicles could easily transport such goods and commodities in bulk at rare times to the city. Nevertheless, scholars have it that this has been the case in the history of Makkah from its founding times. That is, you will find fruits there during peculiar or out of the ordinary seasons. This has been happening long and it is not recent. In those days, storage facilities where one could usually keep foods and edibles were not available. Freezing them so that they would not be spoiled easily did not exist. Yet still in Makkah there has never been at any point in time when fruits would be scarce. There is always plenty food and fruits and in abundance for them. All those who went there could attest to this and anyone who goes there too will find this. That is baraka which Allah has covered their foods with. And this is a testimony of the prayer of Prophet Ibrahima (Alayhi was salam) where the latter prayed for baraka over their meat and water. Anyone who as a habit lives on meat and drinks water on top of it, it must affect your health status save in the city of Makkah. You could be eating meat and drinking water while in Makkah and it will not bother your health but if you frequently adopt that eating habit in The Gambia, Senegal or anywhere else other than Makkah it would badly or seriously affect your health. Ibrahim (alayhi salatu wasalam) visited his son Ishmail and his wife in Makkah one day. Upon arrival, he could not meet the son and met his wife instead. He enquired from her about their food and dining activities of the city (Makkah). She told him meat and water was what they eat for their source of living. The Prophet (salalahu alayhi wasalam) said anybody who makes meat and water your frequent diet will get nothing other than harm from it except if the person is resident within the vicinity of Makkah. No country has this prestige and preference other than Makkah. I repeat, if you take meat as your daily breakfast, lunch, and dinner, you will experience harmful health consequences except in the city of Makkah. Allah said: ”This is a land full of blessing.” Listen to this, it is not my word, it is Allah’s.

 

By Ousman Bojang

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