You won't get lost in Jeddah
Travel to the Junction of the Two Seas
The Wisdom in Islam
By Aftab H.Kola
Jeddah still conjures up images and stirs the nostalgia of a typical Arab land notwithstanding the fact that the city has burgeoned into a sprawling metropolis, home to people belonging to different nationalities. “The bride of the Red Sea”, as it is sobriquetted, embracing an area of 560 sq.km and having a population of 2 millions, has retained its original character in spite of modernity engulfing every aspect of the denizens’ lifestyles. The major commercial hub of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, an oil-rich state, Jeddah’s 80-km long Red Sea coastline attracts multitude of visitors. And for the Muslims of the world, the porttown is a Gateway to Islam’s holiest sites, the Ka’abah in Makkah and the Masjide-Nabawwi (Prophet’s Mosque) in Madinah.
More than its beaches, the hallowed sheesha (richly flavoured hubble-bubble), the rawashins (bay windows, a characteristic feature of Arab architecture), the enticing gold souk (market), the heritage museums, the famous 216-mtr. tall King Fahd fountain in the Red Sea (the second tallest fountain in the world) or the glitzy supermarkets spread all over the city Jeddah is identified for one ‘unique aspect’ that is conspicuously missing in other cities of the world. The whole of the city is emblazoned with a glittering collection of road monuments (art objects) that dot the city landscape.
These monuments or sculptures numbering about 250 give the city a different look. In fact these monuments do the job of a compass that guides people to locate their destinations. Thus, localities in Jeddah are known by their monuments than by the street or district name. You will frequently hear people telling their guests: ‘I stay very near the ..... monument’.
The city can be labelled as “an open air museum of art objects”. They encompass a spectacular range of subjects and cost millions of shekels and are a feast for tired eyes. Some of the alluring ones include a seagull, an engineering compass, the huge bicycle, the cosmos, obelisques, mosque lanterns (lit in the night), the plane in the clouds, sailing ships, Islamic calligraphy, etc. So, when you go to Jeddah you can freely move around sans a guide.
By Mufti Md. Shahbuddin Sabeeli
Prophet Musa (Pbuh) got up to deliver a speech before the children of Israel and he was asked who is the most learned person among the people? Hazrat Musa (Pbuh) replied, “I am the most learned”. Allah admonished him for he did not ascribe knowledge to Allah alone. So Allah revealed to him: At the junction of the two seas there is a slave of ours who is more learned than you. Hazrat Musa (Pbuh) asked, “O my Lord! How can I meet him”? Allah said, Take a fish and put it in a basket (and set out) and where you, will lose the fish, you will find him.
So Hazrat Musa took a fish and put it in a basket and set out, along with his boy-servant Yusha bin Nun, till they reached a rock on which they both lay their heads and slept. The fish moved vigorously in the basket and got out of it and fell in to the sea and there it took its way through the sea (straight) as in a tunnel. When Hazrat Musa got up, his companion forgot to tell him about the fish and so they carried on, their journey during the rest of the day and the whole night.
The next morning Hazrat Musa asked his servant ‘Bring us our early meal, no doubt, we have suffered much fatigue in this journey of ours”. Hazrat Musa did not feel tired till he had passed the place which Allah had ordered him to seek for. His boy-servant then said to him.
“Do you remember when we were resting on the rock! Indeed we forgot the fish, none but Satan made me forget to remember it. It took its course into the sea in a marvellous way. There was a tunnel for the fish and for Hazrat Musa and his boy-servant. Hazrat Musa said: “That is where what we have been seeking for.” So they returned, retracing their steps till they reached the rock. Behold! There they found a man covered with a garment. Hazrat Musa greeted him. Hazrat Khidhar said astonishingly ‘Is there such a greeting in your land’? Hazrat Musa said. “I am Moses”. He said: “Are you the Moses of the children of Israel? Hazrat Moses said, “Yes” and added, “I have come to you so that you may teach me of what you have been taught”. Hazrat Khidhar said “you will not be able to have patience with me. O Moses? I have some of Allah’s knowledge which He had bestowed upon me but you do not know it, and you too have some of Allah’s knowledge which he has bestowed upon you, but I do not know it.”
Hazrat Musa said “Allah willing you will find me patient and I will not disobey you in anything”. Hazrat Khidhar said to him `If you follow me, do not ask me about anything until I myself speak to you concerning it? After that both of them proceeded along the sea coast till a boat passed by and they requested the crew to let them get on board.
The crew recognised Hazrat Khidhar and allowed them to get on the boat free of charge. When they got on board, suddenly Hazrat Musa saw that Hazrat Khidhar had pulled out one of the planks of the boat with an adze. Hazrat Musa said to him: “These people gave us a free ride, yet you have scuttled their boat, so as to drown its people Truly! You have done a dreadful thing.”
Hazrat Khidhar said: “Didn’t I tell you that you will have no patience with me?” Hazrat Musa said: “Call me not to account for what I forgot and be not hard upon me for my mistake.” The first excuse given by Hazrat Musa (Pbuh) was that he had forgotten”. Then a sparrow came and sat over the edge of the boat and dipped its beak once in the sea. Hazrat Khidhar said to Hazrat Musa My knowledge and yours compared to Allah’s knowledge is like what this sparrow has taken out of the sea. Then they both got out of the boat and while they were walking on the sea shore. Hazrat Khidhar got hold of the boy twisted his head and killed him. Hazrat Musa said, “have you killed an innocent soul who has killed nobody! Truly you have done an atrocious thing.” He said: “Didn’t I tell you that you would not have patience with me?” Hazrat Musa said: “If I ask you about anything after this, keep me not in your company.” Then they both proceeded until they came to the inhabitants of a town. They asked them for food but the people refused to entertain them, (in that town) there they found a wall on the verge of falling down Hazrat Khidhar set it straight with his own hands. Hazrat Musa said: “These are the people to whom we came but they neither fed us nor received us as guests. If you had wished, you could surely have exacted wages for it. Hazrat Khidhar said: This is the parting between me and you. (Bukhari:12/690)
Moral of the Story
There are numerous issues to be discussed on. But we are going to limit ourselves to a few of them for the sake of abridgement. A widely known Islamic scholar Ibn Munabhah has written that the name of Hazrat Khidhar was “Ablayan bin Malkan”. His fore-father was Hazrat Noah (Pbuh). (Qurtubi:11/30)
“Khidhar” is an Arabic word which means green or verdant. He was called Hazrat Khidhar as whenever he used to sit on barren land and desolate place, the land was changed into a greenland. (Tirmizi:2/148). There are a number of commentators who thought that he was a Prophet (Ranul-Ma’ani:15/293). But he was given inspired knowledge by revelation (Tafseer-e-Razi:1/350)
Some scholars say that Hazrat Khidhar is still alive, because he drunk water of immortality. Allama Qurtubi favours this opinion. But the proofs he gave for his idea, are not very convincing and accurate. (Qurtubi:11/30). On the contrary Hafiz Ibn Kaseer and Ibn Jauzi have given various reasons to condemn that idea and they said with firm conviction that Hazrat Khidhar is not alive. He died a natural death. Imam Bukhari, Qazi Abu Bakar Ibn Arabi and other scholars of tradition agreed with this point of view. (Tafseer Ibn Kaseer:3/98)
There are more points in the story which are as follows: We should travel in search of knowledge whether it be a long journey or short and likewise face all sorts of difficulties that come in our way. The Prophet (Pbuh) himself said encouraging the seekers of knowledge, Allah makes way easy for him to Heaven”. (Abu-Dawood: 2/513).
However, Islamic knowledge has very different and lofty position among other worldly knowledge, therefore the seekers of knowledge travelled throughout the world to get it. Imam Bukhari and other scholars of tradition have mentioned this Hadith under the chapter “Excellence of journey for the sake of knowledge”. This particular journey of Hazrat Musa was of a similar nature.
Contributed by Abubakar Khasim
Khalid ibn El Waleed (RA) narrated the following hadith: A Bedouin came one day to the Prophet (Pbuh) and said to him, “Oh, Messenger of Allah! I’ve come to ask you a few questions about the affairs of this Life and the Here After.”
Q: I’d like to be the most learned of men?
A: Fear Allah, and you will be the most learned of men.
Q: I wish to be the richest man in the world?
A: Be contented, and you will be the richest man in the world.
Q: I’d like to be the most just man?
A: Desire for others what you desire for yourself, and you will be the most just of men.
Q: I want to be the best of men?
A: Do good to others and you will be the best of men.
Q: I wish to be the most favoured by Allah?
A: Engage much in Allah’s praise, and you will be most favoured by Him.
Q: I’d like to complete my faith?
A: If you have good manners you will complete your faith
Q: I wish to be among those who do good?
A: Adore Allah as if you see Him. If you don’t see Him, He seeth you. In this way you will be among those who do good.
Q: I wish to be obedient to Allah?
A: If you observe Allah’s commands you will be obedient.
Q: I’d like to be free from all sins?
A: Bathe yourself from impurities and you will be free from all sins.
Q: I’d like to be raised on the Day of Judgment in the light?
A: Don’t wrong yourself or any other creature, and you will be raised on the Day of Judgment in the light.
Q: I’d like Allah to bestow His mercy on me?
A: If you have mercy on yourself and others, Allah will grant you mercy on the Day of Judgment.
Q: I’d like my sins to be very few?
A: If you seek the forgiveness Allah as much as you can, your sins will be very few.
Q: I’d like to be the most honourable man?
A: If you do not complain to any fellow creature, you will be the most honourable of men.
Q: I’d like to be the strongest of men?
A: If you put your trust in Allah, you will be the strongest of men.
Q: I’d like to enlarge my provision?
A: If you keep yourself pure, Allah will enlarge your provision.
Q: I’d like to be loved by Allah and His messenger?
A: If you love what Allah and Him Messenger love, you will be among their beloved ones.
Q: I wish to be safe from Allah’s wrath on the Day of Judgment?
A: If you do not loose your temper with any of your fellow creatures, you will be safe from the wrath of Allah on the Day of Judgment.
Q: I’d like my prayers to be responded?
A: If you avoid forbidden actions, your prayers will be responded.
Q: I’d like Allah not to disgrace me on the Day of Judgment?
A: If you guard your chastity, Allah will not disgrace you on the Day of Judgment.
Q: I’d like Allah to provide me with a protective covering on the Day of Judgment?
A: Do not uncover your fellow creatures faults, and Allah will provide you with a covering protection on the Day of Judgment.
Q: What will save me from sins?
A: Tears, humility and illness.
Q: What are the best deeds in the eyes of Allah?
A: Gentle manners, modesty and patience.
Q: What are the worst evils in the eyes of Allah?
A: Hot temper and miserliness.
Q: What assuages the wrath of Allah in this life and in the Hereafter?
A: Concealed charity and kindness to relatives.
Q: What extinguishes hell’s fires on the Day of Judgment?
A: Patience in adversity and misfortunes. Related by Imam Ibn Hambal May Allah give us the true guidance. Ameen!!!