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21 Ramadan 1438 (16 June 2017)

In the name of Allah
The All Compassionate, the All Merciful
21 Ramadan 1438 (16 June 2017)
Islamic Universal Association
20 Penzance Place, Holland Park
London, W11 4PG

Wisdom 15
Further to last week’s discussion, I quote below Ayahs 41-44 of Surah An-Nahl:

“He (Solomon) said, ‘Transform her throne to her; we will see if she follows the right way or strays’.
When she (Queen Sheba) came, it was said to her: ‘Is this your throne?’ She said: ‘It seems as if it was the same. We were already informed (of your Prophet hood) and we were submitting’.
What she worshipped prevented her from worshipping God; indeed she belonged to a disbelieving people.
It was said to her: ‘Enter the palace,’ but when she saw it, she thought it was a pool of water, and she uncovered her legs; he (Solomon) said: ‘This is a place smoothed with (slabs of) glass.’ She said: ‘Lord! I have been unjust to myself, and I submit along with Solomon to God, Lord of the worlds’.”

Solomon ordered his servants to set the throne before the Queen casually and when she arrived, she was asked whether it was her throne and she replied that it appeared to be the same. She further added that she and her people had already heard of Solomon being the Prophet of God, and not merely a ruler of a kingdom and they were in the process of submitting. Ayah 43 gives clarity to her position and the fact that she had been a disbeliever mainly because she belonged to a disbelieving group of people and she had become accustomed to worshipping a false deity since her childhood, which had become a hindrance from pursuing the right path. However, when she came in contact with Solomon, she discerned the right way and the hindrance was removed forthwith.

Furthermore, while receiving the Queen, Solomon disillusioned her mind by an undeniable fact. He had built a palace with a floor of glass and under it flowed water. The Queen had to walk on it and she lifted her clothes thinking it was water. Solomon made her realize the folly of getting misled by outward appearances and worshipping objects instead of the Lord himself. She felt grateful and joined him in the praise of Allah (S.W.t). This was the one of the reasons that induced her into submission. The first was Solomon’s letter that had been begun with the name of the Allah (S.W.t), which was different from the common custom prevalent among kings. The second was his rejection of her gifts, which made her realize that he was a different kind of king. The third was the report made by her envoyas about his pious lifestyle, his wisdom and his message of Truth. For these very reasons she had decided to travel to Jerusalem herself to personally meet him. Moreover, the removal of her throne from Sheba to Jerusalem in no time made her also realize that he was supported by the power of Allah (S.W.t). But what actually removed every doubt from her mind was his unique and great personality when she saw that in spite of possessing every means of comfort and a grand palace, he was not conceited, but on the contrary he was so God-fearing and righteous and grateful to Allah (S.W.t) that he bowed before Him for every small favorr and his life was so different from the life of those who were enamored with worldly grandeur and authority. To be continued

Second sermon
Martyrdom of Imam Ali (a.s)
I would like to offer my condolences to Imam Mahdi (a.t.j) and to the lovers of the
Ahlul Bait on the martyrdom of Imam Ali (a.s) on the 21st of Ramadan.

Imam Ali (a.s) was born in the House of God, the Holy Ka′bah, and he was also martyred in the House of God, at Masjide of Kufa. On the 19th of Ramadan when he was in a state of prostration whilst offering his morning prayers, Abdul Rahman Ibne Muljam dealt a deadly blow on his head with a sword and he succumbed to the injury on the 21st of Ramadan and was buried in Najaf. His glorious life began with fervent devotion to Allah (S.W.t) and His Messenger and it ended in the service of Islam. In his last will and testament he offered invaluable advice to his sons, Hassan and Husain (a.s), and his family as well as to the Muslim nation and coming generations. This has been cited in the Nahjul Balagha under letter 47; it reads as follows:

“I advise you to fear Allah and that you should not run after the pleasures of this world even if it runs after you. Do not grieve or be remorseful for worldly things that you have been denied. Speak the truth and act in expectation of Allah’s reward. Be an enemy of the oppressor and tyrant and a friend and helper of the oppressed and the tyrannized.
I advise you both and all my children and members of my family and everyone whom my writing reaches to fear Allah, keep your affairs in order and maintain good relations amongst yourselves by getting rid of your differences and strengthening your ties for I have heard your grandfather, the Holy Prophet say: ‘Eliminating mutual enmity, ill-feeling and hatred is better than recommended prayers and fasting.’
Fear Allah in matters concerning orphans. Do not allow them to starve or be oppressed in your presence. The Holy Prophet had always advised, cautioned and reminded us of this responsibility.
Fear Allah and keep Allah in view in matters concerning your neighbors, because they were the subject of the Holy Prophet’s advice, so much so that we often thought that he would assign them a share from our inheritance.
Fear Allah and remain attached to the Holy Quran to such an extent that nobody should excel and surpass you in following its tenets and being more sincere in implementing them.
Fear Allah in relation to your prayers, because it is the pillar of your religion.
Fear Allah in relation to the Lord’s House, the Ka′bah. Do not abandon it as long as you live. If you forsake it, you will lose your dignity.
Fear Allah and persist in matters of jihad in the way of Allah with your properties, lives and tongue.
Fear Allah and respect your relatives and avoid turning away from them and severing ties. Develop mutual liking, friendship and love and help others. Take care that you do not spurn and treat one another badly and unsympathetically.
Fear Allah and do not desist from promoting good deeds and forbidding evil lest the mischievous gains position over you and then if you will pray, your prayers will not be granted.
O’ sons of Abd Al-Muttalib, I certainly do not wish to see you plunging harshly in acts of retaliation for my murder. Do not shed the blood of Muslims under the banner: ‘Amirul Momineen has been killed!’ and do not indulge in the massacre of my opponents and enemies. Beware! Do not kill anyone on my account except my killer.
Wait until I die by his (Ibn Moljem’s) fatal stroke. Then strike him one stroke for his stroke and do not dismember his limbs for I have heard the Messenger of Allah say, ‘Avoid mutilating limbs even though it may be a rabid dog’.”
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