Jazib Mehmood, Student, Jamia Ahmadiyya International Ghana
Observing the state of the world today, an overwhelming feeling of helplessness begins to engulf the soul. People from all over the world, who look on as more people suffer, share these feelings of helplessness and despair because they can do nothing to stop the horrors of war. Turning on the news today seems to be a willful attempt to depress yourself.
Few people are making the decisions that go on to affect billions of people all over the world. Such costly punitive damages have angered populations for so long that these feelings of anger are turning into resigned acceptance of a fate that has been sealed by other, stronger hands. What can they do, after all?
This very question was answered in a recent Friday Sermon of Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Vaa. What can we, the innocent bystanders of a war on the verge of unimaginable catastrophe, do to prevent it? Huzooraa stated that these days, there should be an increased focus on reciting Durood Sharif (salutations upon the Holy Prophetsa) and istighfar (seeking forgiveness).
He also advised the community to recite the following prayer frequently:
رَبَّنَا آتِنَا فِي الدُّنْيَا حَسَنَةً وَفِي الآخِرَةِ حَسَنَةً وَقِنَا عَذَابَ النَّارِ
“‘Our Lord, grant us good in this world as well as good in the world to come, and protect us from the torment of the Fire.’” (Surah al-Baqarah, Ch.2: V.202)
Huzooraa stated that the Promised Messiahas once emphasised that this prayer be recited frequently. With the growing threat of nuclear war, this prayer also has very specific implications. The “torment of the Fire” mentioned in this prayer can also point to the “fire” of weaponry, i.e. the horrors of war, especially nuclear war. Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Vaa once stated in this regard:
“An example of ‘the torment of Fire’ in this world, as I mentioned before, is the state of some countries in the world today. No one knows whether a bullet from a gun or a bomb explosion could severely injure or take a life, at home or in the marketplace. Many lives are lost in this way.” (Khutbat-e-Masroor, Vol. 11, p. 156)
The concept of prayer in Islam is a truly wonderful thing. Muslims are encouraged to not only exhaust all material means in all daily pursuits, but to constantly seek help from Allah the Almighty and supplicate that He enables them to carry out tasks they might be too weak to bear. Especially in cases where such problems that plague life cause a great deal of anxiety and discomfort, prayer proves a comfortable tool. In this regard, the Promised Messiahas states:
“A person who prays to God at a time of difficulty and suffering, and seeks Him to solve his problems, on the condition that he prays to perfection, always finds comfort and true peace from God Almighty. And if it so happens that his purpose is not achieved, he is still granted comfort and forbearance. And by no means whatsoever is he left disappointed.” (Ayyamus Suluh, Ruhani Khazain, Vol. 14, p. 237)
This is exactly what the Holy Quran has stated:
أَلاَ بِذِكْرِ اللّٰهِ تَطْمَئِنُّ الْقُلُوبُ
“Aye! it is in the remembrance of Allah that hearts can find comfort.” (Surah al-Ra‘d, Ch.13: V.29)
Without peace of mind, it becomes extremely difficult for a person to go on; the stress epidemic shadowing the world today is a clear example of this. One of the signs of a true Khalifa is that he turns fear into peace. We must, therefore, be grateful that the Khalifa of the time guides us in such uncertain times when we feel lost and deeply uncertain of our futures.