By S. R. Balkhi and K. Balkhi
In this world of great scientific progress, sophisticated diplomacy, admirable rivalry in advancement and research, we have become extremely busy.
It is time to step back from the manic nature of our packed daily routines– and think.
The Great Rush: Skewed Benchmarks
Why are we on earth? Is it to live for 90 or 100 years, to educate ourselves, to seek honor and prosperity, and then to go away? About seven billion people come onto the surface of the earth every hundred years. And seven billion go below the surface.
There is a great rush. In this consuming preoccupation, our intellects and insights are irrationally influenced. Worldly achievements are praiseworthy, but we are often sucked into fleeting toil, seldom contemplating beyond it.
Even if we are exceedingly successful by all material and worldly terms, what are all our “successes” worth? For whom are our trillion-dollar military budgets? What statements are we trying to make in our tussle to build the tallest sky-scrapers in the world? Own the shiniest cars? Live in the most posh homes? Fleeting joys in a fleeting world . . .
Even wild animals kill only their prey. But from vegans to warmongers, humanity seems to have lost its way.
Sit back and behold with your mind’s eye: nuclear war-heads, naval and air missiles, the most powerful guns and war machinery, in fields and loaded onto aircraft carriers running on budgets larger than the gross domestic products of some countries.
Now imagine that all these are not for destroying an insurmountable monster, an ogre, oreven the devil himself; instead they kill human beings. And this seems to be an acceptable norm.
Imagine an alien, visiting earth, asking you, “Whatever are these enormous sophisticated weapons for?”
“Why, to eradicate different people,” would be the answer. “We wipe out entire towns and villages with the flick of a switch.”
“You use them to kill your own kind? Humans?” the alien asks. “Rumors on our planet were that you all went way back together. That you all came from the same parents: Adam and Eve. Whatever is the reason?”
Think about it.
The only justification for war that can ever be is to spread the law of the Merciful Creator Himself. For, only can His system be truly fair and just to everyone:
“. . . For al-fitna, (polytheism, tumult and oppression) is worse than killing . . . ” [Quran, 2:191]
Think about our own world. Which one of us hasn’t, at some point, wished a number of tyrants to be among the seven billion under the earth’s surface?
We are seeing chaos because such ruthless tyrants are not appropriately dealt with. While little pockets of civilization may sparkle through, most are pretenses of peace, precariously balanced within the chaos, ebbing and fading away into the cruelty that prevails.
The Ultimate Injustice
And the root of all this injustice? The ultimate injustice: defying, openly and secretly, in our hearts, minds and actions, the will of our very own creator, God.
Ponder over this ultimate injustice, too.
What’s the Big Fight About?
It is interesting to note that all the messengers have brought the same message: to believe in one God and His messengers and do righteous deeds. This is why Muslims have been asked to believe in all the prophets and all the divine revelations, including those of Prophet Moses, Prophet Jesus, and Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon them all. No wonder, for the source and authority of the message was always One: God, the Almighty.
“The Messenger believes in what has been revealed to him from his Lord, as do the men of faith. Each one of them believes in Allah, His angels, His Books and His Messengers. We make no distinction (they say) between one and another of His messengers.” [Quran, 2:285]
What a great command for, co-existence. Crown it with the overlooked fact that we are all sons and daughters of Adam and Eve – peace upon them. A blessing forgotten.
Re-caliber Your Innate Compass
We are too busy to think about the rationale of our existence. We have largely disregarded the purpose of our creation.
“And I did not create the jinn and mankind except to worship Me.” [Quran, 51:56]
In the process of living and acting in this world, our strategic vision must also be to achieve the ultimate success– paradise. We must constantly sharpen our focus, our minds, for we have to achieve this in this life. We will not be granted another chance.
“Know that the life of this world is only play and amusement, pomp and mutual boasting among you, and rivalry in respect of wealth and children. … And the life of this world is only a deceiving enjoyment.” [57:20]
Rewind. The life of this world is but a “deceiving enjoyment.” What could be truer than these divine insights?
God created us. Who could tell us our purpose better than our own creator?
“Nay, (behold) you prefer the life of this world: but the Hereafter is better and more enduring. And this is in the Books of the earliest (revelations) – the books of Abraham and Moses.” [87:16-19]
Interesting . . . Since time began, the message has been the same. And indeed, it would be so, for the giver of all messages is “The Only”— Allah.
This should have made living in the world more peaceful, but that didn’t happen. Our direction and focus went wrong, even though detailed guidance was received.
God sent us the Holy Quran saying, “And it certainly is a Guide and a Mercy to those who believe. And this is a Book we have revealed as a blessing, so follow it and be righteous so that you receive mercy.” [6:155]
But where did we begin to digress? Why the current state? We plan to contemplate that together with you in a sequel to this article: “90+ Years in This World.”