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Translated from an article written in Malay by Ustaz Feirul Maliq
Aidilfitri is a day that we celebrate our victory.
We celebrate the victory over our desires and nafs, and the victory that Allah has awarded us with.
We have to ensure that we will not return to our vices, and remain steadfast in maintaining the obedience and determination that we have shown throughout the month of Ramadan that has passed. Indeed, we do not know whether or not we will meet the next month of Ramadan.
We will increase our gratitude towards Allah s.w.t. to the highest levels for giving us the experience of peace, health and happiness with the arrival of Aidilfitri.
We should also be grateful for successfully carrying out the act of fasting for a month with utmost obedience and determination.
We are grateful because we have been bestowed with various blessings. If we were to try and count these blessings, we will find that we are unable to count them all. Thus, it is apparent that we should be grateful for them.
We show our gratitude by obeying the commands of Allah. As a slave who has been bestowed with Allah’s favours, we should not then defy His commands. Allah s.w.t. has said in Surah Ad-Dhuha, verse 11:“But as for the favor of your Lord, report [it].”
This is the favour of Allah upon us, so that we continue to persevere for our country’s stability and prosperity. Let us work hard so that Allah s.w.t.’s blessings continue to be awarded to us. Allah s.w.t. said in surah Al-Anfal, verse 53:“That is because Allah would not change a favor which He had bestowed upon a people until they change what is within themselves. And indeed, Allah is Hearing and Knowing.”
In our happiness this Hari Raya, we should remember that there are those among us who are unable to experience what we do on this day.
Thus, it is apparent that we should increase our gratitude towards Allah s.w.t. and not simply continue in our vices and sins. We should be fearful that Allah would remove those favours from us later on.
Prophet Muhammad s.a.w. is the embodiment of the attribute of mercy. When building the community, Rasulullah s.a.w. taught us to carry out good deeds and show mercy towards others, regardless of their religion, race, or background.
The Al-Quran has also mentioned the structure of humanity, and encourages us to live in harmony with other people. In Surah Al-Hujurat, verse 13, Allah s.w.t. said:“O mankind, indeed We have created you from male and female and made you peoples and tribes that you may know one another. Indeed, the most noble of you in the sight of Allah is the most righteous of you. Indeed, Allah is Knowing and Acquainted.”
Allah s.w.t. has created us with various appearances so that we take the effort to get to know and recognise one another. This verse bids us to be good towards and live in harmony with other human beings, as well as supports us in playing our roles as members of a society – whether it is an Islamic society or otherwise.
As Muslims who live in a multi-cultural society, we have the potential to build a merciful community by playing our role in spreading goodness. Thus, we can begin with ourselves.
The month of Ramadan is the month whereby the rewards of good deeds are multiplied. The month of Syawal, on the other hand, is the month of happiness for everyone, and we should continue to show mercy to everyone at all times.
Even displaying a smile to others is a form of charity, and it is an act that is simple enough to carry out in order to extend mercy and goodness towards others.
As a graceful community, we have to make the effort to extend our mercy towards others regardless of their race and religion. This is especially so in this holy month, when we should work to increase our good deeds.
For example, we are encouraged to carry out good deeds especially towards our neighbours. Prophet Muhammad s.a.w. said:The Prophet (ﷺ) said, "By Allah, he is not a believer! By Allah, he is not a believer! By Allah, he is not a believer." It was asked, "Who is that, O Messenger of Allah?" He said, "One whose neighbour does not feel safe from his evil". [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]
A merciful community is one that is loving and inclusive. It is a community that is mindful and respectful even though differences exist within it. In other words, it is a society that is united in nurturing traits of humanity.
A merciful community also does not isolate itself from the larger society. It pays attention to the teachings of religion that encourage its followers to become sources of goodness and contribute to the surrounding society.
Rasulullah s.a.w. bid us to act with mercy and goodness towards one another. In a hadith, Nabi Muhammad s.a.w. said:“The merciful are shown mercy by Ar-Rahman. Be merciful on the earth, and you will be shown mercy from Who is above the heavens.” [At-Tirmidhi]