IF two things are to be taken away from recent news coverage of the newly elected President Donald Trump and here in UK of Nigel Farage, former leader of the UK Independence party (UKIP), then it is the admirable qualities of determination and resilience of these two men possess. Although i do not agree with them (how can i? when i am a Muslim), they have distinguished abilities, skill sets which i believe many people do not have or even learn to internalize; self belief in what you are doing is correct despite the odds, the peer pressure, polls, opinions of millions of people about you.
In the age of selfies and making sure you look good in the eyes of people every few minutes, the need to feel your accepted and appreciated, trendy and hip, these two men seem to resonate treasured qualities which in the past, all the men of Allah (not saying Trump and farage are men of Allah, lol) distinctly displayed in their teachings, lives and even in the face of death; submission to their cause in bringing people to Allah often times going against current state of affairs and making great sacrifices in the course of it.
Contrary to all the hardened news coverage of these two men by the media in all platforms from radio shows to social media sites, an average person would be tempted to say ‘I’ve had enough and for the sake of my family, friends and life i cant go on living like this, i will stop making controversial statements in public and lead a normal life’, doing so in hope of putting an end to all the negative press coverage one might have received. Yet, the more negative coverage they get the more determined they become, to speak out for what they believe in. For example, recently Nigel Farage was egged whilst on the UK campaign trail for a local by-election for the newly elected UKIP leader Paul Nuttall.
This quality of determination and other qualities like self belief, courage to stand your ground when the tide turns against you, being out spoken for truth and justice, are attributes only a few people in the past and present possess. Which means if men like Trump and Farage should choose to turn to righteous ways, they can become mountain pegs of righteousness dug deep into the ground of truth and piety and not fall over in gale force winds of shaytanic whispers, temptations and desires. Going on to build solid fortresses of piety and tawheed of Allah in amidst all the ravaging storms and tornadoes of fitna and disbelief. It is often men like these who turn to a life of good from a life of crime become the torch bearers leading other insecure double minded, doubtful believers into the warmth of the Prophetic teachings and nearness. History is also testament to this truth, many pious Islamic saints of the Past, like Malik bin Dinar, Bayazeed Bistami, and others (Allah be pleased with them all) had been career criminals who had certain righteous attributes within them which helped them become leading lights in the Muslim communities simply because of determination and self belief in what they were doing to be the truth.
Unfortunately, many Muslims who may have chosen to take on the noble work of dawah and tableegh get disheartened when people are not receptive of what they have to say. Or, if someone has decided to become a practicing Muslim stops practicing on the first obstacle he or she may face. Buckle under the pressure and give in, ‘i cant do this, or go on living like this, intimidated, humiliated and rejected’, turning them back into the closed demoralizing world of sin and evil.
Just like the often quoted phrase in religious Muslim circles,
“Wisdom is the lost property of a believer, so where ever he find’s it, he should take it”.
even in headline news, which some newly practicing Muslims may naively believe to be a waste of time watching, reading or hearing about, has some subtle Islamic teachings at the heart of it. Being determined to follow Allah and his Rasul (peace be on him) no matter the apparent outcomes or circumstances one may face.