By Abdulwarees Solanke
Today, I take my reflections from Surat An-Nuur where in Allaah haz wa jal declares manifestly that He is The Light. I also fall back on how He qualified Himself in Surat al-Baqarat as the Waliyy of the believers, who He leads out of darkness to the light.
Between these two verses, I gain awareness that man is ever on a journey, a straight journey of two opposite ends. One leads to perfect light and the other ends in utter darkness.
On this journey of life, there are so many milestones. So many experiences. So many trials and tribulations. So many encounters. So many pearls to pick. So many thorns that prick.
On this journey, there are valleys and mountains to scale. There are rivers and rivulets to cross. Deserts. Sandy desert of limitless horizon. Forests. Dark forests of thick foliage.
I also gain certain consciousness that Allah is both the guide and the destination of light. And the third awareness, faith in Allah is a requirement to embark on the journey to the Light, the journey to Allah to live in His presence. He is the guide that takes man on this journey, this course of life to a finishing line of success and victory.
What can turn man from the course of light? What can blind him from this luminous light? What can hold man down from the journey that leads to success and victory? Who can deceive man from following the excellent guide?
In a further reflection, I am led to ask: How can darkness be made attractive for any sensible man to pursue? I think the answer is to be found in the entire story of creation. It is in Ibliis resolve to assail man on all fronts and stand on man’s path or confuse him because of Allah’s special grace on man above all creation, granting him dominion and freedom.
But man is not left unguided or beclouded on the journey as succession of prophets came with revelations and warnings, the most detailed of which is the Quran conveyed to the seal of prophets and the mercy unto mankind, Muhammad Mustapha (saw).
Do not follow the footsteps of shaitaan; He is to you and avowed enemy, Allah warns in several parts of the Quran. Ashaitan attracts you to lewdness and threatens you with poverty, Allah also explains at some point. So many verses of the Quran point to the fact that it is Ashaitan that endears the path of darkness or makes corruption fair seeming.
What does darkness portend for man? Fear, insecurity, helplessness. When man follows the course of darkness, he is only steeped in darkness, entering layers of darkness, swimming in ocean of darkness, exposed to dangers and threats he has no protection against.
The man who gropes in darkness is not different from the blind. But he would not enter darkness in the first instance if he is not a confused man. Every confused man is blind. Every confused man will take even his enemy as his guide.
A confused man cannot different poison from cure. A confused man is ever in doubt. The faith of a confused man is easily shaken or threatened. A confused man is often hasty. A confused man wants just any way out of his problems.
But Allah as the Guide who designed and understands the course and the terrain of life, he points to you the direction that leads to felicity, He tells you where to rest and conserve energy, where to be cautious and where to be hasty.
He gives you courage on the journey when despondency and fatigue is about setting in. He warns you when you are too excited about a discovery, because that is not the ultimate of the journey.
So whoever journeys with Allah till the end will have appropriated so many reflections of Allah, rays of His light.
Hikma is wisdom, Allah gives to whomever He wills and whoever Allah has granted wisdom, has been granted a most bounteous gift. How can man walk with Allah and not be blessed with wisdom, a certain light?
Sabr or patience is an attribute of Allah, a wonderful ray of His light. How can a man be patient, steadfast, and resilient, without attaining victory? Innallah ma asaabiriin. Allah is with those who are patient.
One thing: the shadow of this Guide is light itself. As you follow the shadow, you are led in His light. As you journey with this Guide, His shadow, as light is cast upon you. As you embark on this journey with Allah, you also become a grade of His light to illuminate the path for others.
Now, I take all the beautiful names of Allah to be the grades of His light. I take the dye of Allah to be the rays of His light. Aah! Sibgatullah! Who can colour man with such colourful, pleasant hue?
It’s the light of faith that Allah casts in the hearts of His lovers, who are pleased with Him and in whom He is pleased, for whom He has prepared al-Jannat, the abode of the favored.