MAKE FRIENDS WITH AN ANT
MAKE FRIENDS WITH AN ANT
I don’t know if you’ve ever heard the story of the ant carrying a contact lens. This story is mentioned in many religious sites, and every body applies different names to the people in the story in accordance with the country it is mentioned in. In fact, it does not matter whether you use “Ann” or “Zehra” as a name because we are only interested in the essence of the story. I heard this from my Turkish friends so I will use the name , “Zehra” for the main person.
Here it comes:
Zehra was a young woman who was invited to go rock climbing. Although she was scared to death, she went with her group to a tremendous granite cliff.
In spite of her fear, she put on the gear, took a hold on the rope, and started up the face of that rock. Well, she got to a ledge where she could take a breather. As she was hanging on there, the safety rope snapped against Zehra’s eye and knocked out her Contact lens. Well, here she is on a rock ledge, with hundreds of feet below her and hundreds of feet above her. Of course, she looked and looked and looked, hoping it had landed on the ledge, but it just wasn’t there.
Here she was, far from home, her sight now blurry. She was desperate and began to get upset, so she prayed to Allah to help her to find it. When she got to the top, a friend examined her eye and her clothing for the lens, but there was no contact lens to be found. She sat down, despondent, with the rest of the party, waiting for the rest of them to make it up the face of the cliff.
She looked out across range after range of mountains, thinking of the verses in the Qur’an that say,
“………..Allah is He Who hears and sees (all things) “Surah Hajj-2/75 and
“Allah– surely nothing is hidden from Him in the earth or in the heaven.” Ali Imran-3/05.
She thought, “Oh Allah, You can see all these mountains. You know every stone and leaf, and You know exactly where my contact lens is. Please help me.”
Finally, they walked down the trail to the bottom. At the bottom there was a new party of climbers just starting up the face of the cliff. One of them shouted out, “Hey, you guys! Anybody lose a contact lens?”
Well, that would be startling enough, but you know why the climber saw it? An ant was moving slowly across the face of the rock, carrying it!
Zehra told me that her father is a cartoonist. When she told him the incredible story of the ant, the prayer, and the contact lens, he drew a picture of an ant lugging that contact lens with the words, “Oh My Rab, I don’t know why you want me to carry this thing. I can’t eat it, and it’s awfully heavy. But if this is what you want me to do, I’ll carry it for you.”
I think it would probably do some of us good to occasionally say, “Oh Allah, I don’t know why you want me to carry this load. I can see no good in it and It’s awfully heavy. But, if you want me to carry it, I will.”
Allah has not created anything without a reason. In this wheel of life, every body carries a load on his back from place to a place without knowing why he is carrying it.
“And We created not the heaven and the earth and all that is between them in vain. That is the opinion of those who disbelieve. And woe unto those who disbelieve, from the Fire! ” Surah Sad- 38/27
There are sweet loads which people carry on their back with pleasure happily. A father is responsible for providing sustenance for his wife and children. This is a nice load on his shoulders and he is more than happy to carry it.
There are many mothers and fathers who have disabled children and they dedicate their lives in minding their vulnerable children. I have some friends from such mothers and fathers, lets mention some of them over here.
We had a neighbour couple in our summer house around 1980’s, this couple had a disabled child. The child was not sensing anything below her waist, as no nerves were developed from birth in her legs. This couple was handling their children with care because changing the position of the child was sometimes ending with damaged vein and the child was not realising as she felt nothing . The father left his main work and all his career prospects and they have been looking after her for years day and night.
Another neighbour, Miss Nese was an English Teacher. She had a child whose legs and arms were crippled from birth. Every day she used to take her down in to beach and make her swim in the water and walk on the land to do exercise. A part of my child hood passed by watching them doing exercise every day. They used not to miss a day without practice. She was also educating her by teaching her different subjects. She was so kind that she used to give free English lessons to the young people around her in the middle of all her works with her daughter.
When I took my little daughter(1 year old) for 10 minutes walking exercise in the middle of our room last day, I felt boredom for a moment, then I remembered these neighbours and I came to my self again.
The contact lens that these people carry on their back and shoulders is
the lens of patience(Sabr),
the lens of contentment(Shukur and El-hamdulillah),
the lens of love and
the lens of determination(Aziym)
the lens of mercy (Rahmat) which people keep dropping from their eyes and can not find them easily.
This load, the lens, that they carry starts shining from the shoulders of these ants in the moment of bewilderment and desperation, then the public remembers the shining qualities on their shoulders, then they appreciate the worth of their own health and their families’ health, show more mercy to the people around them, then they make hamd to Allah with contentment by saying Al-Hamdulillah for everything, then they become more determined in their goal in the path of Haqq(Truth) and come to themselves again.
While mentioning disability, one more incident came to my mind, lets mention that as well:
The ones who live in Istanbul would know a site called Kumburgaz. There is a small mosque on the shore. One day we had gone to Jumah(Friday) prayer to this mosque. There was a man in front of me praying. When I finished praying, I looked at him while he was still praying(Salat). His legs were crippled, he nearly had no arms. He was trying to do sajda on the floor by touching his forehead on the floor only, as he had no hands and arms.
He was also another ant man carrying a shining contact lens on his back for the people who,
are finding the prayers difficult,
are lazy to come to the mosque although they are fine and healthy,
do not know the value of their strength in youth and waste their energy by following the worldly desires(nafsanic desires).
Now we are going back in time to the period of Asr-I Saadat. Lets remember the condition of Rasulullah (SAW) and his Ashab after hijrat. People at that time were asked to give whatever they can for Islam. Generosity of Hadrat Abu Bakr(R.A) is one of those who stays in our memories. They make a rivayat that Abu Bakr(R.A) had given everything he had for this cause. Him and his wife stayed at home with nothing but one cloth, which they were sharing between each other.
Brothers and sisters do not say “why not two cloths?”!
This religion is the religion of tawheed(Oneness)!
We are all One, We give everything and fit in to one cloth!…
Do you see another cloth when you go to Hajj, can you say they what the pilgrims wear are all different cloths?
Lets get back to Hz.Abu Bakr (R.A).
It is said that Abu Bakr (R.A). could not go out for the morning prayers because of being naked. When Rasulullah(SAW) realised this, he sent a man to his home to call Abu Bakr (R.A). to the prayer. When the man said to Abu Bakr(R.A) that he is called by Rasulullah(SAW), he had to go to the prayer. As his wife was wearing the cloth at this time, he went out and collected the date leaves to make him self a cloth to wear. He sewed the leaves , made a cloth and wore this cloth made of date leaves.
When Rasulullah(SAW) was in the mosque, Jabrail (A.S) appeared to Rasulullah(SAW) in a cloth made of date leaves. Rasulullah(SAW) was surprised when he saw him and asked him why he was wearing this strange cloth on him self. Jabrail (A.S) said “Allah instructed all angels to wear like this for the honour of Abu Bakr” and explained the condition of Abu Bakr to Rasulullah(SAW)
When Abu Abu Bakr (R.A).came to the mosque, Rasulullah(SAW) said to him, “Your Rabb is pleased with you, are you also pleased with your Rabb”, He said “I am also pleased with my Rabb”.
In a delicate moment like this, Abu Bakr(R.A) and his wife are shining with a lens on their back in the middle of public.
This is the
Lens of generosity,
Lens of devotion (Sadakat-Siddikiyyat),
Lens of patience,
Lens of Tawakkulallah(Trust in Allah) and
Lens of oneness.
If they had not carried this lens on their back,
How would we have found the lens of generosity that many people lost in bewailing and moaning while giving alms and zakat to poor people?
How would we have found the lens of togetherness, brotherhood and unity in religion and society?
How would we have found the lens of considering the others , helping and giving to them selflessly.
Light of that lens, shined from the time of Asr-I saadat, and is still brightening us up here! In a way, they are carrying a timeless and placeless lens on their backs.
Like that ant carrying this contact lens on it’s back, they did not know that they would be memorised by us today.
They were not aware that the light of Allah, who is Al-Wahhab, Al- Kareem, Ar-Razzak and Ar-Raheem, was going to reflect from them to today and tomorrows over the centuries.
Lets move to another lens which is being carried now.
There are those who carry knowledge and wisdom to benefit the others. As well as that, there are those who act with his knowledge and they also benefit the others with it.
“Abd Allah Ibn Mas’ud said , the Rasulullah (SAW) said:
Let there be no envy, except in two things:
1-A man whom Allah gave a wealth and guided him to spend it in reighteous way.
2-Or a man to whom Allah gave wisdom and he acts wisely and teaches it to others” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim; See An-Nawawi, Riyad As-Salihin]
“The example of guidance and knowledge with which, Allah has sent me is like abundant rain falling on the earth, some of which was fertile soil, absorbed rain water and brought forth vegetation and grass in abundance. (And) another portion of it was hard and held the rainwater and Allah benefited the people with it and they utilized it for drinking, making their animals drink from it and for irrigation of the land for cultivation. (And) a portion of it was barren which, could neither hold the water nor bring forth vegetation (then that land gave no benefits). The first is the example of the person who comprehends Allah’s religion and gets benefit (from the knowledge), which Allah has revealed through me (the Prophet) and learns and then teaches others. The last example is that of a person who does not care for it and does not take Allah’s guidance revealed through me (He is like that barren land.)” [Sahih Al-Bukhari v.1 no.79. Narrated by Abu Musa]
My dear friends,
It is very difficult to climb on the mountain of “the self”(mountain of the ego)!
This mountain is very steep and it is not easy to climb on it!
Many people lose their lenses while climbing on it!
This path is difficult!
There are guide ants who are carrying “the lens of ilm and irfan: knowledge and wisdom” on their back for those who are climbing on to it.
Lens is transparent or invisible like the knowledge, but once you wear it and look through it, it shows you
the truth and falsehood with their truth.
When the noor(light) of Allah shines upon it, that lens starts
Dr.Munir Derman (K.S) says “ Make friends with an ant!”.
There are such ants separating the rice from the sand and they carry those lenses on their backs. Seek for those ants even if you have not lost your lenses. Take off the ones in your eyes and replace them with those who they carry on their backs. Seek for the contanct lenses patented with “Naql: Divine knowledge coming from Allah” .
Otherwise, while you are climbing on the mountain of ego(the self), and searching with a blurry eyesight for a wooden branch between the rocks to hold on to by trusting your mind, you may hold the tail of the rattle snake by thinking that it is a branch!…
27th of May, 2008
Al-Hamdulillah: This means hamd belongs to Allah. Although it is translated as “all praises to be God “ in some English Qur’an translations, this word has deep meanings. In the tafseer of Ibn Kathir following quotation is given about “AL- HAMDULILLAH”:
Abu Ja`far bin Jarir said, “The meaning of
(Al-Hamdu Lillah) (all praise and thanks be to Allah) is: all thanks are due purely to Allah, alone, not any of the objects that are being worshipped instead of Him, nor any of His creation. These thanks are due to Allah’s innumerable favors and bounties, that only He knows the amount of. Allah’s bounties include creating the tools that help the creation worship Him, the physical bodies with which they are able to implement His commands, the sustenance that He provides them in this life, and the comfortable life He has granted them, without anything or anyone compelling Him to do so. Allah also warned His creation and alerted them about the means and methods with which they can earn eternal dwelling in the residence of everlasting happiness. All thanks and praise are due to Allah for these favors from beginning to end.”
Jabrail (A.S): Archangel Gabriel.
Al- Kareem: The Generous. whose generosity is most abundant.
Ar-Rabb, the Lord :
Ar-Rabb is the owner who has full authority over his property. Ar-Rabb, linguistically means, the master or the one who has the authority to lead. All of these meanings are correct for Allah. When it is alone, the word Rabb is used only for Allah. As for other than Allah, it can be used to say Rabb Ad-Dar, the master of such and such object. Further, it was reported that Ar-Rabb is Allah’s Greatest Name.
Ar-Raheem: The All compassionate who acts with extreme kindness.
Ar-Razzak: The Sustainer who provides all things useful to His creatures.
Al-Wahhab: The Giver of All who constantly bestows blessings of every kind selflessly without expecting anything back from the ones who He bestows blessings.