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Pillars of Islam
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Quote rami Replybullet Topic: FASTING AND POWER
    Posted: 17 October 2005 at 2:00am

By Imran N. Hosein

The compulsory fast of the (lunar) month Ramadan was given to mankind in a very special context that is linked to power, and we attempt in this brief essay to explain that link.

After the Israelite people rejected Jesus, the son of Mary, as a Prophet of Allah Most High, and as the true Messiah, they conspired to have him put to death by crucifixion. That was the most evil deed that they had ever committed in defiance of Allah Most High. His divine response was to expel them from the Holy Land and to ban their return to that Holy Land until the advent of the Gog and Magog world-order (which is the one that now rules the world). That Gog and Magog world-order would not only make possible their return to reclaim the Holy Land as their own, but would then take on a ride on the ‘Beast of the Earth’ which would culminate with their greatest punishment ever. It is that dramatic history that is now unfolding before the eyes of the world.

But Allah Most High left one door to mercy open for the Israelites. And that was acceptance of Muhammad (peace be upon him) as a Prophet. If they rejected him then the one door to mercy would be shut and the Last Age of awesome punishment would commence. In that Last Age not only would Gog and Magog be released into the world but, also, Dajjal the false Messiah or Anti-Christ.

Seventeen months after the Prophet’s arrival in the city of Madina the Jews made clear their rejection of the Arab Prophet and went on to conspire to crush him. It was at that moment that Allah Most High shut the door on them by changing the Qibla (direction to which one turns in prayer) from Jerusalem to Makkah. But He also sent down, at the same time, the new law of fasting in the month of Ramadan to replace the old law in the Torah.

The implication of these dramatic changes was that Muslim community which followed Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) was sure to be attacked by those who greatly resented this divine decision. It was in this context that Allah Most High sent down a third revelation at this same time making fighting (in warfare) obligatory on all Muslims. Of course, fighting must never be for aggression, nor must fighting be used to spread Islam. Rather Muslims were ordered to fight to defend their rights and in response to aggression.

The divine wisdom recognized that power was essential for successful warfare and went on to recognize that while there were essential external prerequisites of warfare such as weapons, numerical strength, economic support, etc., the internal dimension of power was far more important. Internal power can impact dramatically in warfare to multiply the strength and morale of an armed force.

It was in this context of the development of internal power that the compulsory fast of Ramadan was revealed. Those who abstained, while fasting, from food, drink and sexual relations, do so for Allah’s sake. During the fast of Ramadan the remembrance of Allah Most High in the heart returns again and again. What fasting does is to bring the straying sheep back to the flock and restore their submission to the command of the Shepherd.

The message that comes loud and clear during Ramadan is this: “if you can fast for Allah, why can’t you live for Allah?” Those who live for Allah are also a people who would die for Allah. Such a people would know no fear other than the fear of Allah. That is internal power!

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Rasul Allah (sallah llahu alaihi wa sallam) said: "Whoever knows himself, knows his Lord" and whoever knows his Lord has been given His gnosis and nearness.
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