Well Done Muhammad Ali!

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Written by: Memoona Ahmad

On Sunday, 14th August, early in the morning, I turned on my radio to hear the news of the celebrations of Independence Day. The ceremony had started. After tilawat and naat, Mamnoon Hussain was invited to the stage for the speech on this auspicious day. In his speech, he related an incident about Quaid-e-Azam. Once he was asked, "You have got many successes in your life, the most important of them being getting a separate homeland for the Muslims. Do you still have any dream to be realized?" Quaid-e-Azam paused for a while and then responded, "Yes! I wish that when I am presented before Allah Almighty to give an account of my deeds on the Day of Judgment, I hear a voice saying, "Well done Muhammad Ali!"
This gave me goose bumps. Behind all the spirit he had, the goals he set, the efforts he made and the targets he achieved, there was a sole ultimate dream to seek Allah's pleasure and have His blessings showered upon him. A group of people in his time accused him of being a kaafir. I wonder why they couldn't see the profound love in his words and in his determination. He climbed up the mountain of challenges successfully and hoisted the flag of victory atop and he did all this to dive in the ocean of Allah's mercy and happiness.
 Now, some lines of Iqbal's poetry have clicked in my mind. He says,
"O Allah! You are independent of both the worlds and I am a miserable faqeer. On the Day of Judgment, please accept my taubah and forgive me. If you must open my record and it is inevitable, please keep it hidden from my beloved Prophet, Rasoolullah صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم."
What a great philosopher, an extraordinary poet and a wise lawyer he was, but still he was afraid, like a child, to get his book of deeds revealed in front of his beloved Prophet. He did not want to stand ashamed in front of Rasoolullah صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم. So when he shapes his intense love into words, they penetrate our soul so deep that our faith boosts up and is elevated higher and higher.
Every era in Islamic history has had such examples. Let us move 1400 years back. We see a ruler like Hazrat Omer رضی اللہ عنہ who feared that he would be held accountable even if a dog died on the banks of Dajlah. We find a warrior like Hazrat Khalid Bin Waleed for whom to fight for Allah's sake in the battlefield was more lovable than a wedding night with the most beautiful of women. We witness a mentor like Hazrat Ayesha رضی اللہ عنہا transferring her knowledge to sahaba, especially to sahabiyat, thus purifying their souls with the divine teachings. We see a personality like Hazrat Osman Ghani who was wealthy enough to buy a well for the Muslims and to sacrifice 600 camels laden heavily with goods. Standing with him, we see Hazrat Abu Bakar رضی اللہ عنہ who sacrificed everything in his house saying, "Siddique kay liyay Khuda ka Rasool, bas."
Every person possesses dreams. In our Islamic history, we have a great number of our illustrious ancestors who achieved the most difficult of tasks and set examples that have no parallel just because they knew the core purpose of life. They knew where eternal success lies, they knew where true happiness can be found. Their lives were fragrant with the perfume of God-consciousness. This Taqwa led their actions and these actions led them to find their real destiny and they realized their dreams victoriously.
The crux of the matter is that the pearls of success can only be found when the shells are opened with the words, "La ilaha illallahu Muhammad ur Rasoolullah."