(Note: Bolded areas are cited in the AIFD Commentary on this sermon)
Arabic recitation (at beginning)
We ask Allah (SWT) to accept from us the month of Ramadan. Indeed in the month of Ramadan we had many shortcomings. And this is why on the day of Eid we ask Allah for forgiveness. So the first stop on this day is the start of istighfar.
We know we have many shortcomings and on the Day of Judgment, each and every one of us will have a moment of regret. You know, the bad people will regret that they did not do any good. And the good people will regret that they could have done better. I'm sure all of us could have done better in the month of Ramadan. So we ask Allah SWT to forgive our shortcomings, the Qiyams we missed, the taraweeh we missed, the Koran we could have read, the sadakah we could have given. On this day we ask Allah that he forgives our shortcomings. This second stop is a stop of shukr, of gratefulness, and thankfulness to Allah SWT. The fact that he had allowed us to fast the whole entire month, that is like a miracle, Allah SWT. That we could fast in this heat, long hours, Allah SWT allowed us to accomplish this goal. It is a great bountiful Allah SWT, so we thank him for that.
You know the prophet pbuh said, (Arabic)... The fasting person has 2 moments of joy. When you break fast, you enjoy it, and you are happy. And you know every night we were happy breaking fast. But today, in sha-allah is another moment of joy because now we know we completed the whole month and now we can eat and drink as much as we want, every day, every hour of the day. But you know there is another reason for the happiness.
[I ask all the people who are talking, please do not disturb the others who want to listen to the Khuttbah. Everybody over there, don't talk please. Excuse me right there, don't talk. If you want to talk, please, you can go outside. There are many people here who want to listen to the khuttbah. I don't mean to put anybody on the spot, but it is not fair for the other people who are trying to listen.]
So it is a great sense of accomplishment. Some people think, oh, we are happy because we are eating and drinking. Yes, no doubt. But this happiness that you are done and completed with a great act of worship is another source of happiness on this day. And you know like even when you start a book and you finish it, you feel so good that you have completed something. You take a course at school and you finish and you pass a great source of happiness because you accomplished something. And today you have accomplished a great thing. You have completed the month of fast. I ask Allah SWT to accept from all of us, on this great day.
Another important thing, you know the month of Ramadan is the month of victory. And a lot of people think, well victory is some big battle that has to happen somewhere. We don't realize that victory starts from within. You know this one duaa, I was making the month of Ramadan. It did not occur to me until yesterday. You know in the Quran there is a verse that says (Arabic). If you are spared, the stinginess of yourself, you know each and every one of us has some amount of shu’uh, stinginess. We are a miser in a way. But the Quran tells us if you are spared that stinginess, then you are successful. So I was extracting this aya – verse-- from the Koran, I extracted a duaa from it. I was making this Duaa- Arabic. I did not realize until the end of Ramadan, because I was making another duaa.. And you know Ramadan is the month of duaa. I was asking Allah - Arabic.
Another verse from the Koran. But I realize at the end of Ramadan subhanallah. that is the victory. If Allah answers my duaa, it says (Arabic). You are successful. If Allah cleansed you and cleaned you from stinginess, this is personal victory. I ask Allah that each and every one of you had a personal victory in this month. The prophet told us in the Hadith- Arabic. It says the illness and the sickness and the vices of the people before you have crawled onto you. You are not immune, just because you are from the Ummah of the prophet Mohamed, you are not immune. It says those vices of greed, of selfishness, of envy, of hatred, it says it has crawled onto you. So inshallah if you could rid yourself, if you are able to rid yourself from those vices that is a great victory in this month.
Now after the school of Ramadan, now after you have graduated from the school of Ramadan, right? You have graduated from the school of Ramadan. Now we have some challenges.
Inshallah, in the time remaining, I will talk about a few challenges that we face after the month of Ramadan. Because the month of Ramadan should have allowed you to be stronger, so you can face those challenges.
Some challenges are within our community. Some other challenges are between us and other people. I am going to talk about 2 challenges within our community and 2 challenges dealing with the society at large.
We've got to get over our differences. You know there are some differences that are so old, --1400 years old. There are still some Muslims today debating and arguing about what happened with the companions. We don't seem to be able to get over our differences. Now again, from the school of Ramadan, we all listened to the Quran. One of the beautiful duaa you find in the Quran, and I hope you were using this duaa in Ramadan, it says (Arabic). A beautiful duaa. Wallahi if we implement this duaa. If we practice this duaa. Because some people make duaa, but they don't work toward it. See, if I make a duaa, “Allah give me money”, I have to go out and seek provision. I have to find a job and I make duaa to Allah. I do not sit home and make duaa—“Oh Allah provide for me, Oh Allah give me money”. You don't do that.
Likewise here, this duaa says oh, our Lord, forgive us. It does not say, it does not say forgive me. You are making duaa for everyone. Everyone in the community. You are making duaa to each and everyone next to you. Oh Allah forgive us. Not only that, And to our brothers, of course, brothers and sisters, who had preceded us in Iman, all the people, all the Muslims, who had preceded us from the time of prophet Muhammad up until now. You are seeking forgiveness to all of them, no exception. How great this duaa is. Not only that. Do not put in our hearts any hatred for the believers. For the people of faith. Remove any amount of hatred. Hatred is not from Allah. Remove any amount of hatred we have toward the people of faith. Toward the people who believed. Let me give you an example.
We all know in the last century what happened in Europe. There were 2 major wars and the first war, 15 million people died. 15 million. In the 2nd war about 55 million people died. A total of 70 million people. What do we have today? We have the European Union. You are able to get over the differences. Europeans fighting each other, country vs. another. And nowadays we have one big country. We call it the EU or the European Union. Within a few decades, they were able to get over the differences. Can't we do that as Muslims? Inshallah we can. The second challenge, inside our community. We are obsessed with arguing with each other. And in fact, the Prophet told us that one of the signs of the Day of Judgment is that (Arabic). Everyone is proud of their opinion. Everybody is obsessed. And they are clinging to their opinions. And they are not willing to let go. And this is why we have continuous arguments. We are arguing all the time- al jadal. Now another duaa you must have learned from the month of Ramadan, it says. “Oh Allah, the turner of the hearts. Make my heart firm” On what? On my opinion? It doesn't say that. Oh Allah, make my heart firm on your religion. You should not be firm on your opinion. It could be wrong. You should be willing to change. You make duaa that you are firm upon the religion, because the religion does not change. But see many Muslims act improperly, I'm talking about practically what we see in front of us. They act as if their opinion is the religion. They act as if their opinion should not be changed. Not the religion.
Let me give you an example from the sira of the prophet, because the prophet is the embodiment of the Quran. Look how the prophet pbuh, practiced this duaa. One time he said. The prophet pbuh, the infallible. He said I swear, I swear by Allah that anytime I made an oath and then I realized that there was something better, at the time I thought this was the best, but later something happened, I learned something, and now I realize something is even better. He said when I do, I break my oath. The prophet pbuh, breaks his oath and does what is better. Now we know that when you break your oath you have to expiate. You either fast or feed. Yet the Prophet pbuh, is telling us you break your oath and you change your opinion. So what about the people who are firm on their opinions for years and years and years and never care to change. Look at the sunnah of the Prophet.
Allah u akbar.
(A quick announcement for the people who are late. We will have another salat, eid prayer for the people who are late, will have another prayer after the khutbah.)
Now what about the challenges that we have, dealing with the people who are not Muslims that live with us in this country? We have also some challenges. As we all know, in a few days we are going to have the 10th anniversary of 9-11. And I know many Muslims are a little bit scared. They don't know what to do. Do we participate? Do we participate in services commemorating 9-11? Some people are afraid that maybe the Islam hatred and Islamophobia will increase. Maybe some Muslims will be attacked. We don't know. We ask Allah SWT to spare every Muslim. We ask Allah SWT to protect every Muslim and Muslima. But there are challenges and we have to be up to the challenge.
First I want to remind ourselves of a verse an aya, we must have heard from the Imam during Taraweeh in Ramadan. And this Aya talks about animosity and enmity because that is a fact of life. You cannot run away from it. Hatred is something that Allah SWT created. It is evil. It is evil, no doubt. But it is something that the Quran talks about. Because the Quran is a realistic book. We don't just say, oh God is love, God is love, and that's it. There are other elements and the Quran acknowledges those elements and talks about it. So look what it says here in this particular aya, talking about enmity between people. It says, (Arabic). It says, if you have a choice, you can do two things, and you have an enemy. We all have some enemies. What do you do? He said, go after what is better. Look for a better solution. Look for the compromise. Look for something that will bring people together. Be the bigger man in a way. It says, (Arabic)
It says all of a sudden those people that we have enmity with. There are some people who want to be enemies with you. It says then when you do this, what's going to happen, the enemy will turn into a dear friend, a dear close friend, when you initiate the good action. When you initiate the good thought, the Quran is telling us the enemy will turn into a friend. Now that's not easy sometimes when people are insulting you and defaming you. It is not easy, but that is the challenge. That is why it is a challenge, because it is not easy. So let us try to do it in shallah the month of Ramadan. I tell you the vast majority of this country are very nice. But we have to know how to approach them. How to deliver Islam.How to explain Islam to them in a beautiful way. And inshallah only good will happen, because this is the message of the Quran. Another challenge. Some people, and this is, you know, human nature. They love to create enemies. They cannot live without enemies. This is how they are defined. They are defined through enemies. And they love retribution, retaliation, revenge. So now I want to bring to you a story from the life or the Prophet pbuh, to again see how the prophet dealt with situations like that. One time, an angel came to the Prophet pbuh. We know the people of Mecca and how much they tortured the Muslims. And they gave a hard time to the prophet and his companions. Even his uncle Abu lahab, was standing in the way, telling about his nephew, he is a crazy man. He doesn't know anything, he is sick and so forth. Imaging how hard it is.
Now the angel came to the Prophet pbuh and he said, you know what, I'm going to do something here, and tell me what you think. He said, I'm going to bring these two mountains of Mecca, bring them together and crush everybody in between. I'm going to get rid of all these kuffar. I'm going to get rid of all these criminals, all these people who are making fun of you, those people who are mocking you, I'm going to crush them. I am going to extinguish them. And it is so convenient in Mecca, you know it is surrounded by mountains, it is like the Valley here, except that it is closer. It was easy. You know the answer of the Prophet pbuh? He could have said, I want to retaliate, like some Muslims today. I want to seek revenge. You know, I'm going to go after these people. This is, you know, the best time now. I'm going to see my enemies die in front of me.
He said (Arabic). He said rather, I would rather see that from their progeny, I see some people who come out and they worship Allah. I don't want to kill these people. What if they, you know, if they don't become Muslims themselves, maybe their children, maybe their grandchildren will be Muslims and they will worship Allah and not associate anyone with Allah.
So the prophet pbuh was thinking long term. And he was not thinking about himself, or they hurt me so I must hurt them. They, you know, they attacked me, so I have to attack them. This is not how the prophet was thinking. He had a lot of hope. He said that this culture is of life, I want them to live. So I see some people from their descendants, their progeny, who worship Allah. Now don't take me wrong, I'm not saying that we accept what they say about us. We are not guilty of 9-1-1 and we have to be clear about it. We do not accept guilt by association. Also, we are not satisfied with all of the investigation that has gone so far. We need a more thorough investigation of what happened on 9-11. We should be clear about that, so the truth comes and we see who exactly did it. We are not saying that we should forget about that. At the same time, we have to be wise and we have to share this moment of sorrow with the people. We should not act like outsiders. We are a part of this society. Any many of us were so happy when we got our citizenship. Well this is part of it. So let's make sure that we are wise, we walk in the middle, we don't go to either extreme. One extreme that says, you know, I live here, but I don't really consider myself from this country. I hate these people, I hate the government, and I, you know, I want to just rebel. And the other side who says, you know, Muslims should swallow it, we are guilty, all of us are guilty, just because we are Muslims and we just should listen to Fox News and believe them and you know, listen and obey. We should be inshallah in the middle. Muslims have their own opinion. We should not follow either camp. We should make our own opinion in this country. And we should be proud of it. And, and with the lessons we learn from the month of Ramadan, inshallah we can walk through this fine line in the middle and will be successful with the help of Allah. I pray and I ask Allah to allow us to be happy on this day. I ask Allah to accept the month of Ramadan, to accept our fasting, to accept our Qiyam, our taraweeh, our recitation, our charity, to accept this whole month as a package and to make us really happy, ourselves, our families, are relatives, on this great day Eid Mubarak.
1 Only English is transcribed. Any Arabic recitation is noted as “Arabic recitation” and not translated in this document