Written by: Salman Ahmed Shaikh
After the accidental plane crash, Junaid Jamshed is no more with us. His life has many inspirational aspects. His journey of life took a major turn when he left his claim to fame and his main source of income by abandoning pop music.
He left his previous profession which resulted not only in loss of future income, but he suffered financially having to compensate organizers and media houses for the cancelled future concerts, including one with Jennifer Lopez, and further release of music. He actually lost almost everything to leave that profession at its peak. He left pop music at a time when making commercial pop music was most viable. To pursue his conviction, he left his instinctive passion, limelight and a prosperous career. He literally gave it all up for the path he had chosen. From an individual’s own inner perspective, his turn in life was as much difficult as that of Muhammad Ali. Both followed their convictions, but Junaid Jamshed sacrificed his instinctive passion and art permanently. It was difficult for his fans to stop listening to his pop music performances, but imagine how difficult the decision must have been for him to stop owning what earned him fame, limelight, wealth and performances which millions of people have watched over the years. To lose all the fame, money, name, friends and source of income by own choice is highly inspiring.
“Dil Dil Pakistan” is remembered by people like a national anthem. He was one great ambassador of Pakistan. Some of the global Islamic scholars like Dr. Bilal Phillips, Yasir Qadhi, Mufti Menk and Noman Ali Khan have spoken of him with love and respect and forwarded their prayers for him. This is in addition to the praise he has received from all corners of the world including his past showbiz colleagues, Islamic scholars and sport stars of the country.
After he left pop music, Junaid Jamshed’s fame and respect further increased in a few years when he started preaching as well as reciting Hamd and Naat. Rather than leading a life of seclusion as a religious figure, he became even more social and approachable. People who had difficulty in meeting him and taking autographs from him in earlier life, were able to meet him with ease. Commercial artists earn millions from public appearances. But, he became a preacher for no gain and visited people's places for their time to listen to the message of Allah.
Coming to Islam does not require isolation as Islam is against monasticism. He became a trend-setter entrepreneur in textile, food and travel industry. He identified and contributed to a much neglected issue in social sector, which is working for better treatment of maternal care. As a vocal musician, he, for the benefit of youth and old alike, recited memorable Naats and Hamds which provided him more professional and artistic satisfaction than anything else could.
Programs like ‘Alif Laam Meem’ hosted by Junaid Jamshed were good examples of popularizing basic information and interest about Islam on popular media. While there is no alternative of personal interaction for which Junaid Jamshed and many millions of people spend quite a major portion of their lives, these programs were also effective ways to educate people and get them interested in Islam. His programmes and appearances on media ensured sensibility, right way of conduct and preserving sacredness of holy occasions. He always spoke with deep respect about the Islamic scholars of every sect in his TV appearances where he was a lead anchor or host. That was one of his main distinctions from other seasonal anchors who would do something else all year. His major part of life was not spent on recording few minutes of TV programs, but spending days, weeks and months in the outskirts and rural areas for personally going to people with the message of Islam.
Death is the plainest truth, a fact and reality. People averse to religion ignore this ultimate reality and do not reflect and ponder over it. Michael Jackson announced his last concert with the title "This is it", but due to overdose of sleeping and depression pills, he died before the concert. Allah decides for everyone when "This is it". Important thing is to prepare ourselves for the Day of Judgment and our everlasting abode.