– Muhammad Faheem
It’s impossible for us to comprehend how much Allah loves His creations, irrespective of whether they are obedient or disobedient. When Iblees refused to comply with the order of Allah to bow down before Prophet Adam and disrespected His Prophet, he displeased Allah utmost and became apostate. Even at that time, Iblees prayed to Allah and supplicated Him to grant him concession till the Day of Judgement. Allah accepted his prayer, although He was very much unhappy with him at that time.
All of us believe that a mother is most affectionate towards her children. This belief is not in full conformity with the Holy Quran. She loves and cares her children to the hilt and makes sacrifices for them. And so she is held in high esteem. Father also loves children but does not express affectionate thoughts to them. Love of mother is guided by emotions and love of father is guided by reasons.
According to Holy Quran, love of a father exceeds that of the mother. When mother dies, Allah does not call children orphans, on the other hand, when father dies, Allah calls children orphans and sets their rights and orders their kith and kin to be well-disposed towards them. It is worth mentioning here that Allah ordered Hazrat Khizr and Hazrat Musa (peace be upon them) to repair and straighten the dilapidated wall under which there was a treasure trove buried by the deceased father of orphans only because their father was noble. Both laboured and took no remuneration from orphans – amazing.
Attaining the pleasure of Allah is the birthright of all human beings. That’s why Allah always approves the prayer of a non-Muslim when he prays to Him for true guidance and makes attempts in this direction. To figure out how much Allah becomes pleased when a man joins the fold of Islam, the story of Companions of the Cave deserves mention here. They were seven righteous young men who thought that the idols the inhabitants of their city were worshipping were not worthy of worship, as the idols can neither harm nor benefit anybody. They pondered over what to do. Considering that it would be difficult for them to hold fast to monotheism or they might be forcibly re-converted to polytheism, they decided to leave the city and took refuge in a cave. There they went into sound sleep and remained lying for 300 years.
According to several research papers written by medical doctors available on the internet, it is essential to change the position of a bed-ridden patient every two hours in order to keep his blood flowing in the body and help his skin stay healthy and prevent bedsores or pressure ulcers, a difficult-to-cure disease. Companions of the Cave were also lying on the uneven floor of the cave for more than 300 years. They had no family member or attendant to change their positions. Who was repositioning them in the cave? “We turned them over, to the right and left,” declares Allah in the Holy Quran (18:18). Allah kept on changing their positions for more than 300 years so that their bodies could not develop pressure ulcers. Amazingly, the advice of medical scientists for a bed-ridden patient how to avoid pressure ulcers is already mentioned in the Holy Quran for the past 1450 years.
This story shows that Allah has greater affection, generosity and benevolence than their family members for those who affirm that only Allah is worthy of worship, are forced to leave their homes, patiently endure sufferings for the sake of Allah and adhere fully to Islam. Allah forgives all the past sins of such a convert on the condition that he refrains from doing again. Suppose that he had been involved in a major sin, e.g., drinking wine, during his earlier days and he does not give up drinking, then it means that he did not enter into Islam perfectly and so he will be held to account from the outset of this sin on the Day of Judgement. “O believers! Enter into Islam wholeheartedly…,” says the Holy Quran (2:208).
This story again shows that we need to break away from such ancestral traditions and habits that are based on blind faith, not on reasoning and evidence. Whenever we get into such a situation when pressure is mounted to relinquish our faith, we should never compromise our beliefs. Just like Companions of the Cave, migration to a safer place is the best option.