Sunday, June 24, 2007
About six weeks ago, whilst many people were posting kind thoughts about my ‘Noble Man’ entry, I received two comments which were not so kind. A pair which left me feeling tearful for a few weeks.
St Valentines has left a new comment on your post "The Noble Man From Zaytuna":
Honestly woman, get a grip of yourself. You're practically worshipping HY, maybe you should just ask for his rishta instead of seeming like a desperate ''number one fan.'' You seem like a fanatical HY stalker, I hope your husband one day gets out a miswaak to give you a good bashing with.
Posted by St Valentines to tranquilart at Tuesday, May 08, 2007 2:25:00 PM
Curious Muslim has left a new comment on your post "The Noble Man From Zaytuna":
Zaytuna institute - The place where dreams come true :) The place where we rip you off and hang you out to dry for sacred knowledge ;)
Posted by Curious Muslim to tranquilart at Tuesday, May 08, 2007 2:30:00 PM
I do have a heart, and within it are chambers which ‘feel’.
At the time, I was so upset, confused and angry that my immediate reaction was to ‘moderate comments’. Never before have I had to moderate what comments have been left. Of course with the exception of a few spammers, all who have commented on my blog have been most welcome “Ahlan Wa Sahlan!” I shout in cyberspace.
Come, come, whoever you are
Wonderer, worshipper, lover of leaving
It doesn’t matter.
Ours is not a caravan of despair.
Come, even if you have broken your vows
a thousand times,
Come, yet again,
For almost three years I have been blogging and although there are a ‘regular’ few who comment, most of my comments are from individuals who chance upon the read. I am accustomed to receiving comments from strangers, in fact in the last 2 years I have received a wealth of emails from people who have read the blog but shied away from commenting so publicly. And as I have said before, it is only due to the positive feedback that I continue to find motivation to blog.
So let’s get back to these comments then.
After discussing the comments with well-wishers I came to receive a lot of support and words of comfort, metaphors for the relationships that exist in blogosphere, aswell as the dynamic transformation that communication is currently undergoing.
Everything made perfect sense.
However I still felt very perturbed, tearful and saddened by the comments. I deduced that both comments had probably been left by a single male who was most likely a Muslim. In other words: “A Muslim Brother”.
I asked myself why had I been so offended by these comments. Why was I allowing myself to give them so much of my time, thought and energy? Especially at a time when I was already feeling weak and resorting to daytime naps in order to have sufficient physical energy to fulfil, in the very least: the minimal prayers for each day. Why was I so upset? Allowing something like this to eat into me.. a friend who could not resist told me one day: “taz, let it be like water off a duck’s back!” She made me laugh!
There are many reasons why I was upset:
Initially it was the misogynist stench which I didn’t like.
The references to domestic violence were totally unacceptable. I mean totally. Speak to a woman whose husband has beaten her and told her she is the ugliest individual alive, and you will come to realise how demeaning it is. How it destroys the soul and leaves the spirit to bleed: heart is pumping blood, all vital signs are in check – but there is a corpse in clothing: breathing just because those breaths have been written by Him who Writes it all.
Yes I do know such women, and how dare someone poke fun of what they go through. Shame on whoever speaks such ill.
And to want for your fellow human, your sister-in-faith to get a “good bashing” from her husband? Are these my fellow believers well-wishing me a future of peace and prosperity? Are these their supplications for me when I enter the sacred institution of marriage? Whoever mutilated the saying:
“None of you truly believes until he wishes for his brother what he wishes for himself.”
‘Brother’ equating to ‘fellow human’.
Am I not someone’s child or sibling?
Do I not belong to the ‘big family’?
For those of you who read The Noble Man From Zaytuna did you understand what the station of a Teacher is?
Did you sense the station of a
Did you sense within it the sentiments a child echoes to a parent?
If you didn’t see a daughter’s love for a someone whom she honours alongside her father then I feel sorry for you.
Did you ever get the impression of someone who is desperately trying to save people he doesn’t know from falling into a pit? Someone who stretches his hands out, reaching for them when they have hit rock-bottom?
A man determined to switch on the light so they can see their surroundings and all that exists beyond their tiny world?
One of the comments left on the post so rightly said the following:
“Just can't imagine how garbage my life would have been had he not come into it.”
So many of us know that our lives would have been precisely that: garbage, crap, trash, rubbish and a total waste-heap had it not been for the gentleness of this gentleman, and the nobility of this humble teacher. Yet we are so determined not to acknowledge him as a blessing?
It wasn’t until about a month ago whilst reviewing last summer’s Rihla course notes that I came across the following saying of the Prophet Alaislam that my thoughts about this whole Comments affair took a new twist:
A desert Arab came to the Messenger and said:
”You kiss children, we don’t kiss them.”
The Prophet said:
“Can I prevent Allah from extracting the Mercy from your heart?”
My thoughts now turned to the states we are in. I recalled a recent phone-call from a well-wisher who had said:
“we don’t know the states that we ourselves are in.”
I really felt the weight of this.
I thought how awful it must be to have mercy extracted, taken away, removed from one’s heart.
How very sad.
To live without this emotional treasure.
Finally, I gathered my thoughts and tears: all Praises to the Guide for teaching me through this fine Hadith. I realised that deep down I felt sorry for the individual who had posted the two nasty comments. I mean really really sorry.
I felt grateful to God Almighty for bringing me to this understanding and showing me through a series of emotional hurdles, the importance of addressing why we feel the way we do.
When we are upset about something, we need to carefully examine where that sadness stems from?
Why are we upset?
Which part of us feels the hurt or the offence?
Is it our ego which feels the pain?
Or is it a wound much deep within?
Where are we really hurting?
If we live our life based upon the principles of faith, then we shouldn’t forget that there is a Day of Accounts to follow. None of us would want any other to be at a loss on that Day.
I end by saying something that I have thought about many times: that if it was possible and permissible to transfer one’s remaining years over to another human being, then He Knows best that I would choose the Noble Man from Zaytuna to transfer them over to.
I still hold firm to the 5 reasons I gave for writing the piece in the first place.
May your heart be at ease sister for you write with sincerity and with pure intentions.
People perceive things according to their own state eg. a liar thinks everyone else is also lying or a thief is always afraid of being robbed. And this 'perception' we live with reflects how we behave... As your friend said "we don't know the states that we ourselves are in", but maybe our words and actions can make apparent that 'state' to those around us.
In the end I too feel sorrow for such individuals. Individuals who are blind to the sight of one believer loving another for the sake of Allah Taala... Blind to the people who have been assured shade on the day when there will be no shade to have, save His, simply
for having loved one another for His Sake.
May Allah Azawajal shower us with His Rain of Mercy, May He open our hearts to His Love and teach us to love His Habib Salallahualaihiwasalam.
Dear Sister Taslim,I am a total stranger to you ,but for the last couple of months I have been following your blog.And I love it.Your entry on the respected Sheikh Hamza Yusuf was splendid.It honestly made me cry , as I reflected on Allah`s immense mercy for guiding us with Scholars of the like of Sheikh Hamza.May Allah swt increase him in rank, blessings and health.
I feel upset at the comments that were made by the two users.However ,it is important to realise that we live in an age of ignorance.One frequently comes across "ignorant" and "awkward" remarks made against the most esteemed Scholars.Therefore I pray that "silly" comments left on your blog don`t sadden you.
Keep up the good work.
I look forward to "The Noble Man from Zaytuna Part 2" and Part 3 as well. :)
May Allah swt bless you with health and a long life.Insha`Allah.
Take care, duas please
Ameen to the prayers. Thank you for sharing that incident of Shaykh Hamza.
Ameen to your prayers. And may all our states improve immensely.
Ameen and thank you for your comment. May we give him the dues that we owe our fathers also.
Strangers are always welcome my dear :-)
"we are all strangers until we trust!"
Perhaps we all need to trust one another more?
Am so touched by your comment my dear.. Part 2 & 3? SubhanAllah :-)
Thank you - Duas all the way!
sister in islam,
PS: is that pic of your childhood? its lovely! (I might visit ur blog again IA)
Thanks alot for popping by :-)
And for your kind words.
Nope - not a piccy of me am afraid!!!
x x x x
Not nice in fact reading them made me very angry until i read your response, as always clear, concise clam and clearly correct. Great reposne and belive me people like them only say things becuase their eyes are clouded and hearts are darkened. Its only well balanced people like yourself that can respond in such a beautiful manner.
Do take care.
Praise to God Alone.
Thanks alot for popping-by.
I am well, need to update the blog.. have soo much to write but trying to juggle energy at the moment.
felt like visiting...
AllahSWT bless u and grow u in His deen amin
assalamoalaikom wr wb,
sister in islam,