Khutbah: Eidul Fitr… (revised for June 2017)
(First published on 28th July 2014)
(For the audio version of this khutbah, please click here):
“A-úthu billáhi minash shaytánir rajeem. Bismilláhir rahmánir raheem
Al hamdu lillahi nahmaduhu wanasta’eenahu, wanastagh-firuhu, wanatoobu ilayhi, wana’oothu Billaahi min shuroori an-fusinaa, wamin sayyi aati a’maalinaa. May- Yahdillahu fa huwal muhtad, wa may- yudlill falan tajidaa lahu waliyan murshida. Wa ash-hadu an Laa ilaaha ill-Alláh, wahdahoo laa shareeka lah, wa ash-hadu anna Muhammadan ‘abduhoo warasooluh”
All Praise is due to Alláh, We praise Him and we seek help from Him. We ask forgiveness from Him. We repent to Him; and we seek refuge in Him from our own evils and our own bad deeds. Anyone who is guided by Alláh, he is indeed guided; and anyone who has been left astray, will find no one to guide him. I bear witness that there is no god but Alláh, the Only One without any partner; and I bear witness that Muhammad, peace and blessings on him, is His servant, and His messenger.
Bismillahir Rahmanir Raheem! Ya Ay-yuhal-latheena ‘aamanut taqul-laaha, haqqa tuqaatihee wala tamu tun-na, il-la wa antum Muslimoon.”
O You who believe, – Be aware of Allah, with correct, cautious, awe-inspired awareness, and die not except as Muslims.
Ya Ay-yuhal-latheena ‘aamanut taqul-laaha, wa qooloo qawlan sadeedaa. Yuslih-lakum a’maalakum wa yaghfir lakum thunoobakum, wamay yu-til-laaha warasoolah, faqad faaza fawzan atheemaa.”
O You who believe, – Be aware of Allah, and speak a straightforward word. He will forgive your sins and repair your deeds. And whoever takes Allah and His Prophet as a guide, has already achieved a mighty victory.
In the opening verse of Sura An-Nisaa’, Allah says:
O mankind! Show reverence towards your Guardian-Lord Who created you from a single person, created, of like nature, his mate and from the two of them scattered (like seeds) countless men and women;― Be conscious of Allah, through Whom you demand your mutual (rights) and (show reverence towards) the wombs (that bore you): for surely, Allah ever watches over you.
My Dear Sisters and Brothers,
Today is our joyous celebration of Eidul Fitr, to mark the end of the holy month of Ramadan. We mark this day by thanking Allah, by melodiously chanting our praises to Him:
Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar; La ilaha il-lal-Laahu Allahu Akbar. Allahu Akbar wa lil-Laahil hamd!
(Allah is The Greatest, Allah is The Greatest, Allah is The Greatest! There is no god but Allah! Allah is Greatest! All praise is due to Allah!)
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
During Ramadan we fasted for Allah, not for ourselves. We haven’t stayed hungry from dawn till dusk, just to lose weight and to look slim and healthy. That’s only a by-product of fasting. That’s not the purpose of Ramadan. We fasted to show our love and obedience to Allah, to get closer to Him. We fasted not just with our stomachs, but also with our ears, our eyes, our tongue and heart. We avoided everything that would displease Allah. We fasted so that Allah would count us amongst His obedient, beloved servants. Fasting has trained us and disciplined us.
Now that Ramadan is over we should have cultivated a heightened sense of taqwa, [a cautious, awe-inspired awareness of Allah]. In this higher spiritual state, it’s crucially important that we do not slip back into the bad old habits we had before Ramadan. We have to try hard to prolong this blissful state of nearness to Allah. For one whole month we’ve controlled our nafs al amara bis sow, the ego that inclines us towards evil. We’ve learned to tame our lower passions, we’ve subdued our attachments to food, drink and sex; we’ve restrained anger, backbiting and cleansed ourselves of the diseases of the tongue and of the spiritual heart.
We are now as close as we ever could be to what the Quran refers to as the “Qalb Saleem”… the “pure, sound heart.” This is our entrance ticket for Al jannah, Allah’s eternal gardens, as the Holy Quran declares (in Surah Shu’ara 26, Aayah 88-89):
“The day when no-one’s wealth or children will benefit them, except those who come to Allah with a Sound Heart”[Qalb Saleem] .
No one in his or her right mind would want to lose this wonderful state of being. That’s why our joy and celebration of Eidul Fitr is also marked with a touch of sadness. Sadness, that Ramadan, our beloved friend, the purifier of souls, the much anticipated annual visitor, is leaving us. We don’t know if we’ll live another year until the next Ramadan. But in the meantime, let us try really hard to hang on to the good things we’ve done during this blessed month.
Let’s continue to cultivate Taqwa, to be cautiously Allah-aware in everything we do. Let’s continue to do the good Ramadan things throughout the year. Let’s fast the 6 days of Shawwal. Many of us will follow the Prophet Muhammad’s example and continue to fast on Mondays and Thursdays every week until next Ramadan, insha-Allah. It’s a very good habit. It won’t do us any harm. In fact, it will do us a world of good.
In one hadith, Prophet Muhammad said that “The best of deeds are small ones, repeated often.” It’s so much better than the grand gesture, that we may offer, sometimes just for show, once in a while. Small good actions repeated often, grow into good habits, and good habits cultivate good character. A good character produces the sound heart, the Qalb Saleem that guarantees our place in Al Jannah. Therefore, my dear sisters and brothers, let’s not ever belittle even the smallest good action. Allah takes account and magnifies every good deed.
Remember the story that’s often been told. There was once a lady of easy virtue (a prostitute), who found a thirsty dog, lying there, weak and almost lifeless. She took pity on the dog, so she removed one shoe and used it to scoop up some water. Then she gently brought it to the dog’s lips to drink from it. The dog survived. Because of that small act of charity, Allah forgave her sins and welcomed her to His Garden.
Maybe one day, one such small action may open the doors of Al Jannah for us also.
“Alhamdu lillahi Rabbil ‘Aalameen. Was-salaatu was-salaamu alaa Khairil mursaleen. Muhammadin-nabeey-yil Ummiy-yee, wa-‘alaa aalihee, wasah-bihee, aj-ma’een.
“Innalláha wa malaaikata yusallúna alan nabi. Yá ay yuhal latheena ámanu sallú alayhi wasalli mú tas leema. Allahumma salli alá Muhammad, wa ala áli Muhammad, kama salayta ala Ibrahim, wa ala ali Ibrahim. Allahumma barik ala Muhammad, kama barakta ala Ibrahim, wa ala ali ibrahim. Fil ála meen, innaka hameedun majeed.”
“Soob’ hanallahi wal hamdu lillah, wala hawla wala quwwata illah billah yu althi yual theem”
Glory to Allah! Praise to Allah! There is no power and no strength except from Allah!
My dear sisters and brothers,
Even as we enjoy our Eid today, our hearts and our minds must also be with those who died, and those who survived the terrible fire in London last week. We pray that Allah will forgive their sins and admit them to al Jannah firdaws. Say, Ameen! We ask Allah to give strength and patience to the survivors, and to help the helpers who came forward in this time of dire need. I know that many brothers and sisters from our community were right there to volunteer, as soon as they heard the tragic news.
In the midst of our Eid celebrations, let us also not forget how differently Eid is being celebrated right now in Gaza, Iraq, Syria, Yemen, among the Rohinya Muslims in Burma, Myanmar and other places of conflict around the world. Allah has given us the blessing of safety and security over here. We sometimes forget how lucky we are. Whatever concerns we may have about some aspects of government foreign policy, we should be grateful for the freedom and security that we enjoy in this county, freedoms we often take for granted. We know there’s prejudice and Islamophobia out there. Yes, things could be better for us and there’s always room for improvement. But things could also have been worse, a lot worse than they are now. Let’s never forget that life has already become quite unbearable in so many countries, especially in Muslim countries today
It’s not good enough for us to sit around like couch potatoes in front of our giant TV screens, complaining and criticising without lifting a finger to improve the situation. Some of us think that we’re helpless, that the problems out there are too big and too complex. So we sit and complain, and we do nothing.
Not far from our comfortable homes, there are many hungry and homeless people, right here in Britain! We can help the food banks and soup kitchens. There are broken homes and lonely old people, as well as misguided young people. We can invite non-Muslim neighbours into our homes, we can tell them about Islam, and show them what a beautiful deen we have.
Never ever fool yourself thinking you can’t change things. Don’t ever adopt a defeatist attitude. To despair and give up all hope is a grave sin. Life is a challenge, it’s a test from Allah; and Allah’s help is always near (Sura Al-Baqara ch.2 v 214).
A learned Shaykh once told the story of a hummingbird that flew back and forth with a few drops of water in its beak, trying to put out a forest fire. The elephants, buffaloes, giraffes and other animals looked on, bemused, and asked: “How can a mere hummingbird like you hope to put out a forest fire?” The wise little hummingbird replied: “I do what I can. That’s all. Allah won’t hold me responsible for the results, only for my efforts.”
In the face of all the world’s problems, we may feel that we are like little hummingbirds trying to quell the fires with a few drops of water. Our efforts may seem so small and insignificant. But Allah puts His barakah into those efforts. Our tiny efforts can grow, just as little drops of water make a stream, a river, a flood, an ocean; and little snowflakes can become an avalanche, an irresistible force that sweeps away everything in its path.
While we’re talking of birds and elephants, do we not remember another story mentioned in the Holy Quran? Sura Al-Fiil tells us about the year when Prophet Muhammad sws was born. Wasn’t that the “Year of the Elephant?” And why was it named The Year of the Elephant? Didn’t a flock of birds destroy an army of elephants that was on its way to trample the Kaaba in Makkah? Weren’t those elephants bemused to see birds flying above them, dropping pellets of baked clay? Didn’t they first wonder at the futility of such a sight? But Allah empowered those birds. Allah magnified the ferocity of their attack and gave them victory against overwhelming odds. Isn’t there an important lesson for us today?”
Allah will hold each and every one of us to account for what we could do within our capacity. Don’t belittle the smallest good deed that you can do, to relieve suffering and to provide for the basic needs of others.
One of the great lessons our beloved Prophet Muhammad sws taught us is that we should work hard to fulfil the needs of others. Don’t worry so much about yourself! Allah will take care of you and give you even more than you need, when you start to care for others.
When he arrived in Madinah at the end of his epic journey, Al Hijra, Prophet Muhammad’s first speech summed up a Muslim’s life. He set out a full mission statement for us, in these simple words:
“Spread peace, feed the poor, keep your family ties, pray for part of the night and you will enter Paradise.” [Tirmidhi]
What a beautiful, succinct description of Islam, in one short sentence! “Spread peace, feed the poor, keep your family ties, pray for part of the night and you will enter Paradise.”
Allah will always care for us as long as we care for His creation. We can and must help our brothers and sisters in Islam, as well as our brothers and sisters in humanity, i.e. not only Muslims, but anyone in need, anywhere.
Let’s support charities that do their amazing work in disaster regions. Let’s also help local groups who are feeding the hungry and homeless, as well as those who work to demystify Islam who build bridges of understanding and respect between Muslims and our neighbours.
And now, to conclude our khutbah,
InnaAllaha, Yamuru bil adel, wal ihsaan, wa eetaa-i zil qurba; wa yanha anil fuhshaa-i, wal munkari walbaghi; ya-idzukhum lallakum tathak-karoon. (Sura 16:90),
“Surely Allah commands justice, good deeds and generosity to others and to relatives; and He forbids all shameful deeds, and injustice and rebellion: He instructs you, so that you may be reminded.”
Fadth kuroonee adth kurkum, wash kuroolee walaa tak furoon [2:152].
“and remember Me: I will remember you. Be grateful to Me, and do not reject faith.”
wala thikrul-Laahi akbar, Wal-Laahu ya’lamu maa tasna’oon.” [29:45].
“and without doubt, Remembrance of Allah is the Greatest Thing in life, and Allah knows the deeds that you do.”
Allahumma antas salaam, Wa minkas salaam, Tabarak tarab-bana wata aalayta, Ya thal jalaa-i wal ikraam, Sami’na wa ata’na ghufranaka, Rabbana wa ilaykal maseer
O Allah, You are peace, and peace comes from You and peace returns to You. O Allah, let us live in peace and let us enter the House of Peace, for You are Great and Glorified.
Rabbanaa aatina fid dunya hasanatan wa fil aakhirati hasanatan waqina athaaban naar.
O my Lord, please give us the best of this life and the best of the life to come, and save us from the torment of the Fire.
Rabbi ja-alni muqueemas salaati, wa min dur-riy-yatee, Rabbana wata qabbal du’ah.
O my Lord, help us to perfect our prayer, and that of our descendants; and please accept this prayer
Rabba nagh firlee wali waali dayya, walil Mu’mineena yawma yaqoomul hisaab.
O our Lord, forgive us, and our parents, and all believers until the Day of Judgement
Rabbana la tuzigh quloobana ba’da ith hadaytana, wa Hablana milla dunka rahma, Innaka antal wah-haab.
O Lord, do not let our hearts deviate, now that we have been guided; but grant us mercy from Your very Presence; for you are the Granter of bounties without measure.
Soob’haanaka rabbikal Rabbil izzati ‘amma yasifoon, wasalaamun anil mursaleen, wal hamdu lil Laahi Rabbil Aalameen
Glory to Allah, Lord of Majesty and Honour! High is He above the partners they associate with Him! Peace on all the Prophets, and praise to Allah, Lord of all the worlds!
Brothers and sisters my family and I, and the Islamic Welfare Association of West Surrey, wish you all a joyous Eid Mubarak!
Thank you, and As-salaamu’alaykum