To our horror, Bashar Al-Assad continues to ravage and massacre his people, a people who are under his dreadful custodianship. Such a paradox! That Bashar Al-Assad holds such a position rather than protecting and guarding his people from harm's way, while he is the clear and present danger to his population. He heavily bombards any threat in his path be it a recently widowed woman, premature infant, or elderly man. His ruthless acts have truly tested the Eman (faith) and courage of the Syrian people. Men and women alike favor death over surrender in light of the savage unceasing violence. This death, inshallah, is considered an honorable death in the sight of Allah سبحانه وتعالى. Despite the heavy shelling from the Syrian military destroying homes, schools, and hospitals, people still persevere and remain determined to have their voice heard.
Penetrating deep into the hearts of these tireless protesters, we find a unique trait captivating onlookers. What keeps them determined and focused, knowing that may not live to see the following sunrise? Their minds and hearts are filled with distinct feature non-Muslims may find it nearly impossible to comprehend, yet Muslims grasp it fully thereby inspiring others to continue their struggle for a victorious reform. This blessed feature is Sabr (patience) in the face of adversity.
Sabr often times confused as silently standing by witnessing the oppressions and wrongs of our society. Distancing ourselves from the vital issues and keeping ourselves busy with the spiritual aspects of Islam's rituals: tasbeeh, duaa, unconcerned with the Ummah's state of affairs. All the while, people including ourselves suffer from injustice and hardships. This type of silent suffering has greatly contributed to our Ummah's decline. Misconceptions and fear from government repercussions have played a major role in this.
Yet the true definition of Sabr is the opposite of silently accepting injustice or isolating oneself from the evils of society. Sabr is speaking the word of Haqq (Truth) in front of the oppressor. Sabr is resisting the tragedies that afflict our Ummah without fear of repercussion. Sabr is going about real change to achieve true revival in our precious Ummah. The Believers understand Allah's سبحانه وتعالى Laws so thoroughly that they are willing to suffer any consequence towards triumph, enduring torture-filled imprisonment, loss of wealth, and the ultimate sacrifice: loss of life.
Allah سبحانه وتعالى said,
وَلَنَبْلُوَنَّكُمْ بِشَيْءٍ مِنَ الْخَوْفِ وَالْجُوعِ وَنَقْصٍ مِنَ الْأَمْوَالِ وَالْأَنْفُسِ وَالثَّمَرَاتِ ۗ وَبَشِّرِ الصَّابِرِينَ
الَّذِينَ إِذَا أَصَابَتْهُمْ مُصِيبَةٌ قَالُوا إِنَّا لِلَّهِ وَإِنَّا إِلَيْهِ رَاجِعُونَ
أُولَٰئِكَ عَلَيْهِمْ صَلَوَاتٌ مِنْ رَبِّهِمْ وَرَحْمَةٌ ۖ وَأُولَٰئِكَ هُمُ الْمُهْتَدُونَ
"And certainly, We shall test you with something of fear, hunger, loss of wealth, lives and fruits, but give glad tidings to As-Sabirin (the patient ones, etc.). Who, when afflicted with calamity, say: Truly! To Allah we belong and truly, to Him we shall return. They are those on whom are blessed and will be forgiven) from their Lord, and (they are those who) receive His Mercy, and it is they who are the guided-ones." [Al-Baqarah, 2:155-157]
After reading the inspiring Ayaat of Allah سبحانه وتعالى in their prayers deep in the night, it instills great motivation that drives the Muslim to stand up for the Haqq (Truth) in the face of a brutal tyrant and his terrible regime. The deep understanding of Qadda and Qadr allows the true believer to act bravely and forcefully without any worry about this temporary life, for these blessed defenders of the Haqq long for the eternal life. A glorious life as promised to them by the Creator Himself. We take these Believers as our examples who exemplify the strength of their sabr and Imaan.
The Messenger of Allah صلى الله عليه وسلم said, "It is a punishment that Allah sends to whom He wills. Allah has made it a mercy for the believers. There is not a servant who finds himself amidst a plague but he stays in that land in patience hoping (for Allah's reward) and knowing that nothing can harm him except what Allah has written then this servant will be given a reward like that of a martyr." (Al-Bukhari)
What an honor to die as a martyr to be placed within the same ranks as the great warrior Hamza (ra) on the Day of Judgement for all the creations to witness.
The Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم said, "No fatigue, nor disease, nor sorrow, nor sadness, nor hurt, nor distress befalls a Muslim, even if it were the prick he receives from a thorn, but that Allah expiates some of his sins for that." (Al-Bukhari)
Remain steadfast our dear brothers and sisters. Inshallah while enduring the great calamities brought down upon you that you shall enter the Heavens pure and untainted as the day you were born.
Syria, rest assure. Jannah (Paradise) is so close to you that your bloodshed will not be lost in vain. The Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم expressed the goodness and blessing of the Ahl ash-Sham, "O Allaah bestow your blessings on our Shaam. O Allaah bestow your blessings on our Yemen." (Al-Bukhari) Carry that glad tidings with you to your grave. Inshallah our Ummah's calamity will soon be relieved and Islam's glorious light will fill our skies as promised by the Creator of the universe. Allah swt comforted His Believers with the following ayah:
إِنَّ اللَّـهَ يُدَافِعُ عَنِ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا ۗ إِنَّ اللَّـهَ لَا يُحِبُّ كُلَّ خَوَّانٍ كَفُور
"Indeed, Allah defends those who have believed. Indeed, Allah does not like everyone treacherous and ungrateful." [Al-Hajj, 22:38]
18 Rabi' I 1433