The Prophet (ص) then emphasized four of the rights that the people – all people – have: the right to the security of one’s life, one’s possessions, and one’s family honour, and the right of the proprietor that his trust is returned to him. Notice that he did not say that these rights are exclusively for Muslims. In fact, he did not even say “yā ayyuh’al-ladhīna ‘āmanu” (“O you who believe”) but throughout the khutbah said “yā ayyuh’an-nās” (“O people”). This is even more significant due to the fact that he wasn’t addressing a mixed audience – everyone in front of him was already Muslim. Hence this truly reflects the universality of the message he was delivering: it was not just for Muslims, but for all of humanity. And many of the issues he gave us his advice on later in the khutbah were issues that continue to be problematic not only for Muslims, but for all of humanity.
He then started to address the issue of ribā (usury, interest). Why might that be? As we go through the rest of this khutbah, we can start to notice a trend in the issues that the Prophet (ص) choses to give us his advice about: 1) they happen to be issues related social and economic justice, 2) they are issues that continue to be problematic not only for Muslims but for all of humanity, and 3) they are issues about which the Muslim community today has generally chosen to distance itself from the relevant teachings of Islam.
Ribā, of course, is one of those issues: in a world dominated by capitalism, it continues to be the engine of economic slavery, the cause of ever-increasing disparity of wealth, and the primary cause of countless conflicts and such pressing issues as diverse as depression and climate change. Clearly, it’s something Muslims need to take seriously, and it is likely that is precisely that reason why the Prophet (ص) chose to mention it in this khutbah. He then mentioned an example of common social injustice: senseless violence due to reciprocal, endless vengeance. This, too, remains an enormous problem in Muslim (and non-Muslim) societies today: there is an endless cycle of murder and destruction because those with differences between them and hatred for each other step beyond the teachings of Islam for such situations and take matters into their own control. As a consequence, chaos prevails in society.
It’s also worth noting that for every jāhili (ignorant) practice that the Prophet (ص) abolished in his khutbah, he immediately led by example and abolished it particularly for the case of one of his own family members – first his uncle al-Abbās (ر), and then the son of his cousin, ‘Amir ibn Rabi’ah. One of the primary reasons social and economic injustice prevails in the world today is because we’ve all become increasingly alienated from one another; we all things to change, to live in a more peaceful world, but we also need to start placing ourselves at the forefront of the struggle to make that happen. A Muslim should lead by his/her personal example. If something needs to change in society, we should all strive to immediately make that change happen in our own lives and in the lives of as many people we have direct influence over.
The Prophet (ص) then moved on to discussing yet another social issue: the redress for murder. He used the specific example of the prescribed punishment for murder, but this expression also points to the fact Islam has prescribed for us the ways and parameters of establishing justice (and that the establishment of justice is a cornerstone for an Islamic society). When we start to meddle with that prescription, either by playing around with it to satisfy our own desires or by mashing it up with contradictory ways and parameters of establishing justice, the system of justice will crumble and once it fails, so will society. Islamic history can bear witness to this. As Muslims, we have a responsibility to study Islamic law academically and start to think seriously and critically about the contribution it can make to resolving the problems faced today by both Muslim and non-Muslim societies. Prophet Tells Us About Everything About 100’s of years ago that why he was the World Best Man For All Time.
Prophet Muhammad ﷺ Addressings in Last Khutbah
Next, he (ص) gave us a very, very important reminder: it is a dangerous position to be in to outwardly distance ourselves from the ways of Shaytān and yet leave cracks in our practice of the dīn which allow him to creep into it and start to slowly, quietly destroy our connection to it. How many of our obligations as Muslims do we just pass off as trivial and insignificant? It has been mentioned earlier that the Prophet (ص) did not specifically mention salāh, zakāh, etc. in this khutbah; but perhaps those fundamental acts of ‘ibādah and their importance is exactly what he tried to remind us of here. It is very easy to get caught up in discussions and struggles of Islam-inspired social and economic justice at the expense of losing one’s connection with the core tenets of Islam. Shaytān is our declared enemy; how many chances do we give him every day to nudge us off of as-sirāt al-mustaqīm?
He then started to talk about timekeeping (specifically, the intercalation of months), a part of the khutbah that is slightly more challenging to interpret. There may be many explanations for what he meant, and perhaps the shuyūkh have generally agreed on one interpretation that I am not aware of, but the interpretation that stands out for me is that he was trying to beautifully express the fact that after a period of disorder and uncertainty leading to confusion and chaos, certainty and order had been established in society in accordance with the teachings of Allah (ع). Every society strives for organization and order in the pursuit of stability. True order and stability, however, will never come from effectively rudderless systems of organization devised by people, but from obedience to Allah’s all-seeing, all-powerful authority. As Muslim societies lay in desperate need for reorganization, this is something very important for us to think about: on which fundamental principles of Islam can we establish order in ourselves, our families, our communities, and our ‘ummah? Now Read Khutbah Hajjah ul-Wada Part 3 The Last Part To Complete Khutbah.
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