[Transcript] What is Victory? – Nouman Ali Khan


(اَلسَّلاَمُ عَلَيْكُمْ وَرَحْمَةُ اللهِ وَبَرَكَاتُهُ)
(أَعُوذُ بِاللَّهِ مِنَ الشَّيْطَانِ الرَّجِيمِ)
(بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمٰنِ الرَّحِيْمِ)
(إِنَّا فَتَحْنَا لَكَ فَتْحًا مُّبِينًا) (QS Al Fath: 1)
(لِّيَغْفِرَ لَكَ اللَّهُ مَا تَقَدَّمَ مِن ذَنبِكَ) (QS Al Fath: 2)
(وَمَا تَأَخَّرَ وَيُتِمَّ نِعْمَتَهُ عَلَيْكَ وَيَهْدِيَكَ) (QS Al Fath: 2)
(صِرَاطًا مُّسْتَقِيمًا) (QS Al Fath: 2)
(وَيَنصُرَكَ اللَّهُ نَصْرًا عَزِيزًا) (QS Al Fath: 3)
(رَبِّ اشْرَحْ لِي صَدْرِي وَيَسِّرْ لِي أَمْرِي) (QS Taha: 25-26)
(وَاحْلُلْ عُقْدَةً مِنْ لِسَانِي يَفْقَهُوا قَوْلِي) (QS Taha: 27-28)
(الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ)
(وَالصَّلاَةُ وَالسَّلاَمُ عَلَى أَشْرَفِ الْأَنْبِيَاءِ وَالْمُرْسَلِيْنَ)
(وَعَلَى أله وَ صَحْبِه وَ مَنِ اسْتَنَّ بِسُنَّتِهِ إلى يَومِ الدِّين)
(اللّهُمَّ اجْعَلْنَا مِنْهُمْ وَ مِنَ الّذِيْنَ أّمَنُوا)
(وَ عَمِلُوْا الصَّالِحَاتِ وَ تَوَاصَوْا بِالْحَقِّ وَ تَوَاصَوْا بِالصَّبْرِ)
(آمِيْن يَا رَبَّ العَالَمِيْنَ)

Insha Allahu ta ‘ala today the secret topic, I told the organizers, it was secret because I was still thinking about it. But the topic is actually something I’ve been thinking about for the last couple of months. And I feel that, in the Ummah, there are lots of different kinds of confusion.

And we see the world around us, and we think about the realities around us, whether they are political realities, or social realities, or economic realities, or they are realities in regards to our own lives. And we have to figure out what it all means. We have to make sense of things like the news, or we have to make sense of, you know, our own challenges in our lives. But I feel more, and more that we actually don’t look at reality around us through the book of Allah.

In other words, the best way to understand reality is to understand certain concepts from Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى). And once you understand those concepts, your view, and your perspective, and your opinion changes.

Now I want to give you an example before I begin this specific conversation. And that is that you know… Imagine that you are wearing glasses or you have really weak eyesight. You have really weak eyesight. And you are not wearing your glasses, okay.

So you can see, but you can’t see accurately, or there’s something missing in what you can see. You may that there is a sign, but you may not be able to read it exactly. You understand what I’m saying? But once you put the right lenses on, you put the right glasses on, then now you can see things clearly.

I want you to think of especially the book of Allah, the Quran, as a kind of glasses. Once you put them on, once you start thinking through the Quran, reality becomes clear. Like you start seeing things in a different light, that you did not see them in the same way before, okay…

Measure Success of Dunya

I’ll give you a small example of that before… I actually talk about the ayat that I really want to talk to you about.

And this is actually, in my opinion, it is probably going to take me about six months to a year if not more to study this one surah before I can comprehensively talk about the Surah, but right now I’ll just share with you some brief concepts.

But before I do, just an example. If I was going with a bunch of young men and women on a bus, and we drove by a beautiful mansion. It’s just a gorgeous house, on top of a hill, on the other side, there is the ocean. Just an absolutely beautiful stunning house.

And the drive way into the house, there is a gorgeous car parked outside. And at the back of the house, there’s this incredible backyard with swimming pool and all of it. I mean, whatever you can imagine is there. It’s like this piece of Jannah on Earth.

And you see the guy walking into his house, we are driving in the bus, and we see this guy walking into his house. And I ask these young men and women, “Do you think that guy is successful?”

“Do you think he is successful?”

Overwhelmingly, what is going to be the response?

“Yeah, he is pretty successful.”

“Look at him, look at what he has accomplished in his life.”

“That’s a pretty successful person.”

“Okay.”

When you take a picture of someone graduating from college, they are shaking hands with the President of the University, they are being handed their Diploma. And somebody asks you, “Do you think that’s successful?”

What are people going to say? You know, it’s going to be Muslims and non-Muslims, everybody is going to say that, that is a kind of what? Success!

We are going to… I’m going to congratulate my children one day, when they graduate from college too, because that’s a kind of success.

When somebody gets a job, is that a kind of success? Sure!

We congratulate people when they get a job. When somebody buys a house, when somebody starts a business, when somebody gets a new car, when somebody gets married, when people accomplish things in life and we celebrate them. ‘Cause these are different kinds of small and big successes. Isn’t that true?

The Way Muslim Think About Success And Failure Supposed To Be Different

So the bus keeps driving, and we see a man, homeless man who is living in a cardboard box on the street. And he looks like he is wearing cloths from a couple of years. And you don’t want to go close to him because of the smell.

And I ask my students, “Do you think that guy is successful?”

What do they say? They’d say he is not successful.

Now imagine if I was riding in this bus and in this bus, they were not Muslim boys and girls, but they were Christian boys and girls, or Jewish boys and girls, or Atheist boys and girls, or Agnost boys and girls, or Buddhist boys and girls, and I ask them the same exact question.

Do you think their answer would be the same? Yup, their answers would be the same.

That’s the problem. The problem is that the way we think about success and the way we think about failure, for Muslims it’s supposed to be different.

All human beings can see it a certain way, that’s fine. They have the apparent view of success and failure. But us, Muslims, Allah has given us clearer glasses. And once we look at reality through these glasses. You see something other people can not see.

So when you put those glasses on, then you start thinking about the book of Allah, and you realize that one of the most beautiful, captivating, magnificent homes that was ever built was the castle of Fir’aun. It was one of the most amazing homes ever built.

The Quran Is Teaching Me: Success Has Nothing To Do With Wealth. Failure Has Nothing To Do With Poverty

And if our bus was driving by the castle of Fir’aun, and he was walking into his house, and I ask my Muslim children, “Is that successful?”

“Is that guy successful?”

What would their answer be? Fir’aun is not successful, he is one of the worst losers in all of human history. Isn’t that the case?

What was the second kind of person we ran into? There was one guy walking into a mansion, what was the other guy? The homeless guy. Okay.

Ibrahim (عليه السلام) was kicked out of his house, he was told to leave the house, so he is homeless. But was he successful? He was. Actually he was one of the most successful human beings that has ever lived.

Now the Quran is teaching me that an homeless man is successful, and an incredibly wealthy man is what? A failure.

You know what the Quran is teaching me? The Quran is teaching me that success has nothing to do with wealth. And failure has nothing to do with poverty. Success and Failure are different concepts for us than they are for everybody else.

Some of you want your children to get a good education. I want you to think about this. The parents here. You want your children to get a good education. Why do you want your children to get a good education? Because you want them to be successful. Isn’t that the case?

You want them to get a job, you want them to get a good career, you want them to have a good life. You don’t want them to rent apartment, you want them to buy a house. You want them to go into a good paying profession, you want them to become a lawyer or a doctor, you want them to become an engineer, you know. This is what you want for your kids. You want them to have a good life.

Now tell me, sometimes we send our children to school, and we send them to a different country, or we send them to a different state, or a different city. And even before our children left our home to go to these schools, you already notice that they are starting to disobey you. They are becoming disobedient to you, they are becoming less, and less, and less regard mindful of their prayer.

And you are thinking in the back of your head, maybe, maybe if they go to college in a different city, that things are going to get worse. They are going to become even more rebellious, even more independent, even more careless. But then you think to yourself, but if they don’t go to college, in a different city, they are not going to succeed. They are not going to succeed.

So you know what most parents do? What decision they make? Let them go. Let them go. Then four years go by, and then I get the email. I get the email – My child doesn’t want to talk to me. My child wants nothing to do with me. My child has run off and marry a non-Muslim. My child tells me that he doesn’t believe in Islam anymore. Or whatever, whatever, whatever.

That didn’t happen overnight, that process began a long time ago. But you know what? Even the concerned Muslim parents, maybe they didn’t think about success and failure for themselves, and for their child clearly enough, to make the right kinds of decisions. Because in their head, so long as they graduate from college, they must be what? Successful.

The price was too high. The price was not just the tuition, that’s not the only, you didn’t just pay the tuition, you paid the price of guidance in some cases. That’s a too high a price to pay. There’s a lot of serious things for us to think about as families when we make our decisions.

So this was just an example to give you, you know. Just about the concept of success and failure. The way we look at it from the lens of Iman, from the lens of the Quran, then our view changes. We can’t think of it the same way as anybody else anymore.

Battle of Al-Ahzab

Now I want to come to you to the example, that I’ve been thinking about for a while, and like I told you six months to a year, I still need, before I really completely formulate my thoughts and research on them.

– Rasulullah (ﷺ) after – So, I will give you a brief history okay? So the Rasul (ﷺ)… we won the battle of Badr under his leadership, then we had some serious loses in the incident at Uhud. They were two battles now between us and the Mushrikun of Makkah. The Muslims are in Madinah, they are in Makkah. We’ve clashed militarily two major times.

The third time the Quraish say, “We don’t want this 50% chance we win, 50% chance we lose.”

“We want a 100% guarantee of winning.”

So what we are going to do is,we are going to gather all of the tribes of Arabia, and make sure we have all of their supports, as many of them as we can get. We are going to go to each of them and say, “Listen… – the Muslims are our enemy, but I tell you, if they become powerful, they will come after you, so if you wanna stay the way things are, you should join us!”

“Let’s end this problem, because right now this is our problem.”

“But if you don’t help us, if we don’t become the United Nations of Arabia, United Tribes of Arabia, this is going to become all of our problem.”

“We have to eliminate the Islamic threat. We have to do that.”

So then, they went to all the tribes, and they said, “You need to unite with us, and we all go together, and instead of waiting for a battlefield. We will all march to Madinah, and our army is going to be so big, because it’s going to be made up of all the tribes that we are going to walk into Madinah, and we will kill every man,woman and child of the Muslims.”

“We will get rid of all of them, we will just finish the story, end the problem, because it’s becoming a serious problem.”

So a lot of tribes, who used to be neutral, they did not hate Islam, they were not enemies of the Prophet (ﷺ), but when they were given the story that this is a matter of National Security. They became convinced, and they said, “Fine!”

“If it’s a matter of protecting the way of our life, and the way things are, we will come with you.”

So now a huge legion, which is why it’s called the Al-Ahzab, different groups, huge legion of armies are coming, heading towards Madinah. On the other hand, the Jews of Madinah who had made a peace treaty with the Muslims of Madinah, made a secret treaty with the Yemeni tribe, and some other Christian tribe in the back of the Muslims, and said, “Listen if the Muslims get attacked, and we don’t have enough forces, you guys can attack from the other side.”

“You can take them out from the other side.”

“So from this side, the Quraish will come and get them. From this side, you can come and get them. They are going to be done.”

“We will help you from the inside.”

Now the Muslims have three enemies. One enemy coming from above, one enemy coming from below, and one enemy that is where? Inside. This is going to be over! This is it!

Allah (عَزَّ وَ جَلَّى) described this entire scenario in suratul Ahzab. Okay. In surah number 33 was where this entire scene is painted.

(إِذْ جَآءُوكُم مِّن فَوْقِكُمْ) (QS Al Ahzab: 10)
(وَمِنْ أَسْفَلَ مِنكُمْ) (QS Al Ahzab: 10)
(وَإِذْ زَاغَتِ ٱلْأَبْصَـٰرُ) (QS Al Ahzab: 10)
(وَبَلَغَتِ ٱلْقُلُوبُ ٱلْحَنَاجِرَ) (QS Al Ahzab: 10)
(وَتَظُنُّونَ بِٱللَّهِ ٱلظُّنُونَا۠) (QS Al Ahzab: 10)
(هُنَالِكَ ابْتُلِيَ الْمُؤْمِنُونَ) (QS Al Ahzab: 11)
(وَزُلْزِلُوا زِلْزَالًا شَدِيدًا) (QS Al Ahzab: 11)

Incredible ayat. When the armies were coming from above you, and from below you, and when your eyes were wide open like this. You couldn’t even blink your eyes, you were that scared. Your hearts were reaching into your throats. And you were thinking all kinds of thoughts. Then and there, the Muslims were tested. And the earth beneath their feet was shaken.

(وَزُلْزِلُوا زِلْزَالًا شَدِيدًا) (QS Al Ahzab: 11)

“Oh there were shaken alright.”

They were intensely shaken, uff! That is the scene of the battle of Ahzab. And then we know that the advise of Salman Al-Farisi (رضي الله تعالى عنه) was to dig a hole, dig a trench all around the city, so that their horses and their calvary can’t enter into the city. They will fall into the ditch, but they won’t be able to come up, and that is the only thing keeping the entire city alive, that is the only thing.

Now in this crazy situation, Allah (عَزَّ وَ جَلَّى) protected the Muslims anyway, and they are waiting outside, because you know, the city does not have all of the food supplies, and all of the rations inside. Eventually they are going to run out of food. Eventually they are going to run out of supplies. So they will have to surrender, eventually.

So the armies decided that they would just wait outside the trench. Fine! We won’t fight! We won’t come into the trench, we will just wait outside. After five-six weeks, the people inside will die anyway of starvation, or they will come out and surrender.

So Allah (عَزَّ وَ جَلَّى) sent,

(إِذْ أَرْسَلْنَا عَلَيْهِمُ ٱلرِّيحَ) (QS Adz-Dzariyat: 41)
(وَجُنُودًۭا لَّمْ تَرَوْهَا) (QS Al-Ahzab: 9)

“We sent winds against them.”

Now imagine the armies’ camp. Guys, I want you to imagine this picture. There are soldiers, and they’ve got a – wow, where did that come from? Allah sent wind, and somebody sent a balloon. –

Anyway, so you’ve got these tents. Armies, soldiers have tents. And how do they cook? They make a barbecue outside with the fire, right? They don’t have microwaves back in the day.

So they have to make a fire, and they are cooking their food or whatever. And a wind comes, and the pot tips over, and it sets fire to the tents. And when it sets fire to the tent, the horses go crazy and they run away. And the fire spreads in three or four or five tents are on fire now.

In other words, these winds kept coming and causing so many problems for the Army on the outside, that eventually they said, “We can’t stay here anymore.”

They left! They left. So instead of waiting for the Muslims to come out, they couldn’t handle it on the outside. Allah defended the Muslims by the wind. By the wind, and they left. They failed, they failed in their attack.

The Dream of the Prophet: Go Hajj

Six months later. I’m fast-forwarding history for you. Study the sirah exhaustively because these are important events in the life of the Prophet (ﷺ). But I just want to get to this ayat, so I’m giving you the fast-forward version. Six months go by and after six months, the Prophet (ﷺ) say, “I have seen a dream, and in my dream…”

And by the way, the dream of the Prophet is wahyi, it’s revelation. So what he sees, we have to do it.

“I have seen a dream that we are going to enter the Kaaba, and we are going to enter the Kaaba peacefully.”

“We are not even going to have to fight. And we are going to go there and make Hajj.”

Now when you go to Hajj, can you take your shotgun with you? Can you take your sword with you? Can you take your spear with you? Can you take your bow and arrow with you? No! No! You don’t take weapons to Hajj. Okay? You don’t take weapons to Hajj.

And the dreams says that you will go, and will you go for war or will you go peacefully? You are going to go peacefully. And where are you going to go? Let me ask you again, so that I know you are still awake.

Where are you going to go? You are going to go to Makkah.

Where did the Quraish come from? Makkah!

Where did they come? To Madinah.

Why did they come to Madinah? To kill all the Muslims.

And now the Prophet sees a dream, six months later we should go to Makkah and we should go without any weapons to make Hajj. And nothing is going to happen, because I’ve seen a dream. And the Muslims believed him.

Let’s go! If you’ve seen a dream, let’s go!

If you ask anybody else, to follow into the city that was just thirsty for your blood. You wanna go there and make Hajj? Are you sure? Are you sure that was your dream? No, no, no. Let’s just go.

(قَالَ رَسُولُ الله ﷺ),
(لَقَدْ صَدَقَ اللَّهُ رَسُولَهُ الرُّؤْيَا بِالْحَقِّ) (QS Al Fath: 27)

“He said the truth, let’s follow him.”

So they go. Now, when you go to Hajj, or you go to Umrah. From here, how long is the flight? Mmm? I don’t know, tell me. 14 hours? Allahu Akbar! Inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi raji’un! 14 hours!

I’m sure their trip from Madinah to Makkah, must not have been 14 hours, it must have been less. Oh wait! They were walking. They were walking from Madinah to what? Makkah!

So it’s going to take a few weeks, maybe even months before they get there. They are not like you who go to the airport, then wait in the lounge for two hours, then go on the plane, which is air-conditioned, with a TV screen in front of you, which helps you prepare for Hajj, okay… And there you sitting on the couch – aaa… This is so uncomfortable, my back, eeeee, ahahaha, you know. 14 hours, there’s a one hour delay? Astaghfirullah!

These guys are walking. Is there air-conditioning? Is there any lounge, like a club lounge where you can get a snack? No? Is there anybody walking over offering them headphones, or a towel, or..? No, Uh uh.

Is there snacks offered every few hours? Uh uh.

And the closer they get, the closer they are getting to their own death. I mean, if you think about it, who wants to kill them? The Makkans.

And you going into their own city, you are going into the Lion’s den itself without weapons? You are going to get killed.

So they are walking with Rasul (ﷺ), they are going to Makkah. They get close enough. And there’s an interesting story, you have to understand the different sides of the story. Again because I have to fast-forward this for you, I have to skip parts.

But the Quraish found out that the Muslims are coming. So they -What is it? Is it a fight back there? What happened? It’s okay, it’s not that interesting. If something interesting happen, I’ll tell you.-

So what was I saying, something about Islam? Remind me. Ah, the Quraish! The Quraish found out that the Muslims are coming, And they also found out that the Muslims are coming unarmed. They are not armed, they are coming unarmed.

So they said, “If they get too close, there’s going to be a problem, let’s try to kill them before they get any close.”

So they sent Khalid ibn Walid (رضي الله تعالى عنه) because he had a fast battalion, him and his men were fast. They were quick horsemen, to go and catch the Muslims quickly, maybe even around the area of Badr, quickly catch them and kill them. Kill all of them, before they get close to Makkah.

I’ll tell you why they didn’t want the Muslims to get close to Makkah. I will tell you later.

Hudaybiyyah

But you know, Rasul (ﷺ) found out, ‘cause he had sent some scouts. He found out that Khalid is coming this way. So the Muslims went the other way, and they ended up in a place called Hudaybiyyah. They ended up in Hudaybiyyah.

Now the thing is… let me tell you why the Quraish didn’t want them to get close. The Quraish, what do they have all around the Kaaba? Do you know? What do they have all around the Kaaba? Idols.

And each of these Idols is from a different tribe. Okay. They are not all idols from the Quraish. Some Idols are from the people of Ta’if, some idols are from the people of somewhere else. You know the Hudanese or whoever else, right? Different tribes, all of their idols are sitting in Makkah.

And why does everybody respect Makkah? Why does everybody respect the Quraish? Because they hold the Idols, and also because they take care of people who come and do the tawaf and do the hajj. And why do they have respect? Because if somebody comes unarmed to Makkah, to do hajj, even if it’s a hajj of shirkh, even if they come for that, then the Makkans will take care of them or attack them? They will take care of them, and that is the only reason all of Arabia respects Makkah.

So if the Muslims are coming for hajj, and they are unarmed, and the Quraish attack them, then they will lose the respect of all of the Arabs, and all of the Arabs are already angry with Makkah because Makkah told them, the Quraish told them, to leave their homes, and come out, and kill all the Muslims.

But did they get to kill the Muslims? No.

And is it cheap to gather an army or is it expensive? It’s very expensive.

So all the tribes spent a lot of money to come and try to attack the Muslims but that failed. And now they’ve all gone back, and are they ready to listen to Makkah again? To Quraish again? No!

Like you wasted our time and money! We went out there for nothing! We are not listening to you people again.

And now the Muslims are coming, and if you try to kill the Muslims when they are making Hajj – it’s not like the rest of the tribes like Makkah right now – So the Quraish are like; if we attack the Muslims after they have reached the Miqot, and if they reach Hudaybiyyah, then all the Arabs are going to say, “Forget these Makkans men, they cost us all this money, and now they are killing Hujjaj?”

“Forget these people. Let’s kill ’em.”

So now they Quraish cannot kill the Muslims. They are stuck. They are stuck. But the Muslims don’t know that. The Muslims are just going, and they think that the Quraish might still what? Kill them.

The Rumor Spreads That Uthman (رضي الله عنه) Killed

They stop at Hudaybiyyah. Rasulullah (ﷺ) sent somebody inside. He sent Uthman (رضي الله عنه) inside as an ambassador. We are coming to make hajj, we are not gonna fight. We are just coming to make hajj.

Which is pretty amazing. You guys just tried to kill us, and now we are going to walk into your house, “So what do you, gonna, what’s up?”

And we are going to go around your house, and we are going to walk back. You know what that is? That is spitting on the enemy’s face and saying, “Whatch you gonna do, uhn? Whatch you gonna do?”

So the Quraish, they don’t know what to do, but they arrest Uthman. They are panicking, they don’t know what to do…

“What does… this guy… What does he doing here?”

“What do you mean they have an ambassador?”

“What do you mean they’re in Hudaybiyyah?”

“Capture him! Detain him! Arrest him!”

And they arrest him, and the rumor spreads that they killed him. And the rumor spreads that the Quraish have killed who? Uthman (رضي الله عنه).

Where is the Prophet (ﷺ) and all the Muslims? Where are they? You tell me now! They’re in Hudaybiyyah.

So these Muslims are in Hudaybiyyah, and they get the news, they get the rumor that Uthman has been killed, but the truth of it is that Uthman has not been killed. He has only been what? Arrested.

When the Prophet hears that Uthman has been killed, (رضي الله عنه). He gets very upset, and he gathers all of the Muslims, and he asks them to take an oath of allegiance under a tree. He calls them and says, “You have to pledge to me that we will take revenge for the Murder of Uthman.”

“We are going to go into Makkah, and we are going to take revenge for what they did to Uthman.”

Now he is going to take this oath from the people who came for war or who came for Hajj? So do they have weapons or no? No.

They only have the small knife that they use to slaughter the animal. That’s all they have. They have no shields, they have no bow and arrow, they have no spears, and they are going to go inside the most heavily armed weapons depot city in all of Arabia, and that is Makkah.

They are going to go inside Makkah to take revenge for Uthman. And Rasul (ﷺ) says, “I need you to pledge to me that you will be loyal to me, and you are gonna go, because we have seek revenge for Uthman.”

Did the Muslims agree? They agreed. All the Muslims who agree, are they also know, what are the chances? Are we gonna win or do we get killed? So we are ready to be killed, we are ready to die.

Now I want you to understand something. Actually no, not yet. I will tell you later. Now the Muslims are ready to go kill. And when the Quraish find out that the Muslims are ready to go into war.

They say, “No no no no, we didn’t kill Uthman.”

“We just arrest him and you can have him back.”

“Take him back, take him back, calm down.”

Now the Muslims are already ready to fight, and now they what? Calm down.

Then they said, “Okay, let us come make Hajj.”

“No no no no, you can’t make Hajj. You can’t make Hajj.”

“Let’s make a treaty.”

This call it the treaty of what? Hudaybiyyah, Sulh Hudaybiyyah.

“Let’s make a treaty.”

And if you know anything about this treaty, you know that all of the terms in this treaty go against the Muslims. Everyone of them, goes against the Muslims and everyone of them is in the favor of the Quraish. So they give this treaty to the Prophet (ﷺ).

“This is the treaty, what do you say?”

And the Prophet (ﷺ) signs it or doesn’t sign it? He signs it, he signs it. And that means that you will not make Hajj this year, you can come back next year. You don’t make Hajj this year, you can come back next year.

Now let me tell you something. If you paid for your Hajj package, and you flew to Madinah, and when you got to the airport in Madinah after a 14-hour flight, and a couple of halal McDonald’s. When you got to the passport office, the guy looks at you and says, “Uh, come back next year… Go!”

“What are you going to do?”

“What are you talking about mate?”

“You can’t do that to me.”

“I came for Hajj! What do you mean go back?!”

“Yes, Go Back! And go back peacefully.”

“You can’t do this to me. I flew all this way, 14 hours!”

“I paid for my ticket! I got the Visa, I got the approval, I have the Hajj package.”

“No! Go Back!”

Where did these people come from? They came from Madinah. Muslims came from Madinah.

Did they fly over to Makkah or did they walk over to Makkah? They walked over to Makkah.

Are they hoping to make Hajj? Yes. And when they finally get there. Rasul (ﷺ) says and signs the papers and says what?

“Okay everyone, let’s walk back to Madinah!”

Now I want you to understand human beings have emotions. Human beings, we are all human beings. Sahaba are human beings too. Human beings have emotions. And it is very hard sometimes to control our emotions. And sometimes when our emotions get out of control, we become chaotic, we become chaotic. You know when a large group of people become very angry, there can be a riot. Isn’t that true?

Because of their emotions, there can be chaos. Isn’t that what happens?

-Is everything okay? Did I do something? No? Okay.-

-Alright, you’re trying to do some sneak attack, but I caught you.-

-I have to reset the game and start over again.-

-It’s like a video game. I got to ahhhh…-

-You know, from last checkpoint. Anyway…-

What was I talking about? Islam or something? Emotions.

Now let’s go back to the story a little bit. I haven’t made my point yet, I’m just telling you a story right now. I haven’t made my point yet. I’m going to make my point soon, very soon. Be very patient. Okay.

Rasul (ﷺ) six months ago, along with all of the Muslims almost got killed. Yes? Which emotion was there, when we were almost killed? Fear! Extreme fear! Yes? Okay.

Every man, woman and child. That fear is described in Suratul Ahzab. We were in a state of fear. Okay.

Six months later, the Prophet (ﷺ) says, “I have seen a dream, we are going to go where?” Makkah!

Now there’s concern.

“Really? Are we going to go to Makkah?”

Maybe even doubt. But no, he said it, “We should go, we should go.”

And down there, even be more fear because that time the murderers came to us, now we are going to the murderers. The killers came to us, now we are going to the killers.

So there may even be more fear. Then they finally make it to Hudaybiyyah, when they get to Hudaybiyyah, there is hope. Because now we cannot be attacked. So there’s hope that we will do what? We will do Hajj.

By the way, is going to Hajj cheap? You have to spend a lot of time and you have to spend a lot of money. You have to spend a lot of time and a lot of money. It’s not cheap even for the Sahabah to go to Hajj. It’s not cheap.

Muslim Emotions

So now they are full of hope. Then the news comes that Uthman (رضي الله عنه) has been killed and the Muslims are full of what? Anger!

Then they take an oath that we will take revenge and they are full of courage, and excitement. You know before the war begins, before the general says, “Attack!!”

But before he does that, what are the soldiers doing? “Gggrrrrrhhhh.”

You know like the guy in the boxing match before the “ding ding ding”, or before a UFC fight. “Okay, don’t pull each other’s ears, don’t bite each other. Go!!”

But before he does go, what are the people doing? What are the two guys doing? “Ggggrrrrhhhh”, you know.

You are filled with aggressiveness right? Is that a calm emotion or an intense emotion? That’s a very intense emotion.

So we are talking about intense fear, intense hope, intense aggression, intense anger. These people have gone through a lot of intense emotions. You with me so far?

Now, Rasulullah (ﷺ) signs a treaty and they feel like this treaty is intensely insulting.

“What?! We don’t get to make Hajj?!”

“What?! If one of us runs away from Makkah, we have to send him back to Makkah?!”

“What?! we have to go back?! We can’t fight them?!”

“We were ready to just take revenge right now!”

“Gggrrrrhhhh!!”

“And now, we have to just go back home?!”

Disappointment. Frustration. There are so many emotions in these people. And it’s not one person. It is lots of people.

Now let me tell you something. If you have one young man who is very angry, extremely angry. Is it easy to calm him down? No.

“Calm down, calm down, calm down.”

“Just relax, relax, relax.”

“Okay, okay, just relax, relax.”

It might take you thirty minutes before this young guy whose nostrils are filling, swelling up, like (breathing hard). It might take a while before he calms down. You understand?

That is just one angry man. Are they in the thousands? If there are hundreds, if not thousands of angry men. Is it easy to calm them down? No.

Rasulullah (ﷺ) turns to them, and he says, “We are not going this year, let’s go back.”

They say, “I thought you saw a dream, we are going to make Hajj?”

And Rasul (ﷺ) said, “I never said this year.”

[Audience Laugh]

“What do you mean you never said this year?”

“If it wasn’t this year, then why did we come here?”

But they didn’t say anything. And Rasul (ﷺ) said, “Everybody, take your ihram off.”

‘Cause once you’ve put the ihram on, you have made the intentions for Hajj. And Rasul (ﷺ) says, “Everybody take your ihram off.”

They don’t take it off. Why not? You tell me now, why not? One angry man’s emotions are hard to control. A huge mob of angry men? Is impossible. It is impossible.

If all of you were angry at me and I said, “Calm down, calm down.”

“I will be dead.”

“It’s over. I cannot. You are gonna kill me.”

You understand that? You cannot control a mob. It’s impossible. It’s absolutely impossible.

You know, when there’s chaos in the – like you know, sometimes you see on the news there’s a group of people and somebody fires a gun in the air. And the whole crowd, what happens to it? They all, everybody goes in different directions, and they are running over each other, and there’s chaos, and if somebody says, “Everybody stop!”

Do they stop? No!

You can’t control them anymore. Their emotions are too high.

Now, Rasulullah (ﷺ) comes back to his tent, and he is shocked. Because this is the first time he has not heard, “Sami’na wa ato’na.”

This is the first time. First time! First time! And the Mother of the Believer sees him and she says, “Don’t worry, you just take yours off, they will calm down.”

So he takes his off and then when he goes, “And you shave your head.”

And he goes outside and what do they start doing? They are angry, they are upset, they’re…

“I can’t believe we are not going to, we are going to walk all the way back now?”

“Why did we come all these… Okay now, fine!”

“We will just take it all off, we’ll take the ihram off, we are going back home.”

Now, this was a pretty important incident. So Allah decided to describe this incident. This, now I’m at my point. This is a –I painted a historical event for you so you so far. What happened in history.

Biggest Victory

Now I want you to see how Allah described this event. Not how I describe this event, not how you describe this event, not how the Sahaba thought about this event, not even how Rasulullah (ﷺ) sees this event, but how Allah sees this event.

The ayah comes down to describe this entire story, and the ayah says:

(بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ)
(إِنَّا فَتَحْنَا لَكَ فَتْحًا مُّبِينًا) (QS Al Fath: 1)

“No doubt about it, We have, We in fact, We have granted to you an obvious, unconditional, open, clear victory.”

“You have been given a special favor of the most awesome victory of all time.”

That is the Quran’s description of what happened. This is actually the ultimate victory.

“What?”

“This is the ultimate victory?”

If you ask a Muslim child, “What was the day of victory in Islam?”

In the seerah of the Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ), “What is the day of victory?”

“What are they going to say?”

When Makkah was conquered. Yes? When Makkah was conquered was the day of victory.

(اِنَّا فَتَحْنَا لَكَ فَتْحًا مُّبِيْنًاۙ)

Did not come down when Makkah was conquered.

(اِنَّا فَتَحْنَا لَكَ فَتْحًا مُّبِيْنًاۙ) came down, when we didn’t get to go to Hajj. When we signed the treaty that was against us. When we were completely disappointed.

Where is the victory? I don’t see it. CNN won’t see it. The historian won’t see it, even the Sahaba don’t see it. The Sahaba don’t see it.

“How can you call this victory?”

Ooo, by the way,

Allah did not say,

(اِنَّا فَتَحْنَا لهُم فَتْحًا مُّبِيْنًاۙ).
(اِنَّا فَتَحْنَا لَكَ يا رسولَ الله فَتْحًا مُّبِيْنًاۙ)

I want you to understand this. According to Allah, according to Allah, the greatest victory of the Prophet (ﷺ), because this is not a victory for the Muslims, this is not a victory for Islam, in the ayah, this is a victory for Rasulullah (ﷺ).

The greatest victory in the seerah of the Prophet (ﷺ), are the Sahaba, who even when they have the most intense emotions, they still obeyed Rasulullah (ﷺ). That is the ultimate victory.

This mob, who was able to control their emotions, because their emotions are very high, but their loyalty to Allah’s Messenger is even higher, and out of that loyalty. They can maintain their discipline. There is never ever going to be a greater victory than this. Ever!

It’s not Hudaybiyyah. It’s the sahabah! It’s the sahabah. People miss this point. Why am I telling you this? Because nowadays we make dua for victory. We make dua for victory, yes or no?

We see the Muslims in difficult situations around the Ummah, and we make dua that Allah gives them and gives us victory.

If we don’t understand what victory means from the Quran, then maybe we don’t understand what we are asking for. The victory of conquering a land, the victory of removing the kuffar, the victory of seizing territory. You know what Allah calls that?

(وَأُخْرَىٰ لَمْ تَقْدِرُوا عَلَيْهَا قَدْ أَحَاطَ اللَّهُ بِهَا) (QS. Al Fath: 21)

It’s secondary. Allah calls the conquest of land, secondary. Allah calls the conquest of the hearts of the believers, primary. That’s not my description, that is not a historian’s description. Look, anybody else who would read the story of Hudaybiyyah, they would think of it as a loss. But Allah will describe it as a victory. He’ll describe it as a victory.

The one thing I want you to think about here, and insha Allah, I will give you the secondary benefit too before I close, but just this first Ayah. If I talk about the second Ayah, we will be here till fajr, and I got a flight to catch, so we can’t do that.

But just this first ayah, I want to share something with you. You know, there’s a secondary benefit of (اِنَّا فَتَحْنَا لَكَ فَتْحًا مُّبِيْنًاۙ). Let me explain.

The treaty says you are not going to fight with us, and we are not going to fight with you. But if a Muslim runs away from Makkah, what would we do? Send him back.

We will send him back, and among other disadvantages to the Muslims.

Okay. Let me not tell you about the seerah for a second, let me tell you about international politics. Major governments in the world say, “We do not negotiate with terrorists.”

Ever heard this before? Governments say we do not negotiate with terrorists. If you negotiate with them, that means you have accepted that they are legitimate. Yes or No?

‘Cause you signed a paper with them, you shook a hand with them, you did a press release with them, you did a treaty with them, which means you think of them as a legitimate Government. So if we sign a treaty with them, that is proof that they are legitimate in our eyes. Okay.

And now if a Government thinks that the group, their enemy is small and they can crush them. They say, “We don’t need to make a treaty with these people. We can crush them. They are criminal! They are nothing!”

But if a group becomes powerful, so powerful that you can’t just crush them, then you become weak and you have to accept that we have to sign a what? A treaty!

The political victory in this ayah is that for the first time, the Quraish who up until now, what did they consider the Muslims? They considered the Muslims a cult. They considered the Muslims traitors. You can call them a terrorist group. Back-then language. But now they are signing a treaty with the Muslims.

Which means the Quraish have accepted the Might and the Muscle, and the Power of the Muslims, and Allah made them accept the power of the Muslims, even when the Muslims didn’t have weapons in their hands. They did not accept the might of the Muslims in Ahzab. They did not accept the might of the Muslims in Badar, not in Uhud, not in Ahzab, but they accepted the power of the Muslims when Muslims came in ihram.

(Takbir! Allahu Akbar!)

I need you to understand that. Power is not about weapons! In this ayah, the way we think of, “When will the Kafir understand the Power of the Muslims?”

“When will they recognize the power of the Muslims?”

We have an emotional thought about that. But the seerah and the Quran have such a deeper understanding of this issue. They have such a powerful, it’s such a powerful reality that the Quraish had to sign this treaty.

Now, all of Arabia, the rest of the tribes; they don’t like Quraish. You remember why they don’t like Quraish? ‘Cos they made them go all the way to Ahzab.

Now all of Quraish, all of the tribes see, “Yo, the Quraish, they were going to kill the Muslims six months ago, and now they are ready to sign a treaty.”

“These Muslims are powerful men.”

“Ah, these Muslims are serious.”

They are even more powerful than who? The Quraish. ‘Cause the Quraish were forced to sign a treaty, even when the Muslims were not with any weapons. “That’s crazy men!”

“That’s some crazy tribal politics.”

And in this time, we have ten years of peace. 10 years of no fighting. 10 years of no fighting. Guess what? Have you seen the map during election season? This party is colored blue, the other party is colored red, right? So the blue is this big, and the red is that big, right?

Now think of it like this. I’ll say that, we’ll give the Quraish purple. Purple was huge. And the Muslims white, was very little. It’s very little. But especially during Ahzab, during the Trench wars, all the tribes were against who? The Muslims.

So the purple map was huge and the white map was very small. Now this little tiny white map goes over to the Quraish and they make them sign a treaty.

Now the white has become a little bit bigger, and the rest of the huge purple map has become neutral. Why did they become neutral? Because they don’t like Quraish anymore.

So what do the Muslims do during the peacetime?

The Muslims go to everyone of those tribes and say, “Hey, you wanna stay neutral? Fine.”

“But if you wanna side with us, you can side with us too, ‘cause we are big. We got muscle.”

“Look what we made the Quraish do.”

And so some tribes say, “No, you guys are, I’m scared of both of you guys.”

“I don’t want nothing. I want to be Switzerland, okay.”

Okay. And some other tribes say, “You know what, sign me up.”

And guess what happens? This supposed to be 10 years, it doesn’t take 10 years. Within months, the map of the region, the white starts getting bigger, and bigger, and bigger, and bigger, and what’s getting smaller? The purple’s getting smaller, poor guys are getting squeezed, and they are so squeezed, and they’re scared, ’cause one of the item in the treaty is – if we fight or you fight, if any fighting happens – then the whole thing is canceled. Then the whole thing is canceled.

So the Quraish ended up fighting by accident. They didn’t mean to do it, they just ended up in a fight, and some Muslims got killed.

“Oh no.”

If the treaty is gone, then what will the Muslims do? Take over and now that the white is huge, and the purple is tiny, they have no power left.

So Abu Sufyan, who was not a Muslim, who is one of the great leaders of Quraish, has to now come to Madinah, he has to come to Madinah.

Imagine they used to consider them insects. They used to consider them nothing. Now they have to come to Madinah, and he has to go find and make a meeting with Rasulullah (ﷺ).

He goes to the house of Rasulullah (ﷺ). And by the way, his daughter is married to Rasulullah (ﷺ). So he goes into the house, he sees his daughter. He goes inside, he is about to sit down. She says, “Dad, wait a second,” and she rolls up the mat.

“Now you can sit on the floor.”

And he says, “Excuse me, am I too good for this mat or is this mat too good for me?”

She says, “Well actually that’s the Rasulullah (ﷺ)’s mat.”

“It’s too good for you.”

Dang! Now he has already been told, now what is he going to negotiate now? His own daughter just kinda put him in his place. You don’t treat an ambassador like that.

Imagine an ambassador comes to your government, it comes to the parliament house, you are about to sit on a chair, they move the chair.

“Please sit on the floor.”

That’s insult doesn’t it? That means this ambassador has no respect with us.

“You are nothing to us now.”

“You used to think we are nothing.”

“Now we think you are nothing.”

So he has no room to negotiate. He is begging and pleading, “Please, don’t attack us, please. Sorry, we made a mistake.”

“I know the treaty is canceled, but can you please renew the treaty?”

“Please, please, please, please…”

And the Muslims say what?

“Um, No! Uh uh.”

And we go, and we make Hajj, and we make it peacefully. We don’t take weapons, we just go make Hajj. And we conquered Makkah without a single weapon. We just conquer Makkah. But all of that happened the day the Muslims were frustrated, and they couldn’t fight, and their anger was high.

And they said, “Come on, let’s get the revenge for Uthman.”

And they said. “Come on, let’s just make Hajj.”

“Come on! We’re right there with the enemy, Allah is with us, let’s just go fight them!”

“Why are we accepting these insulting negotiations against the kuffar?”

“We should take the kuffar on!”

“Allah is with us, the angels are with us.”

“Let’s do this right now!”

That is the time when Allah will calm them down, and they would listen to Rasulullah (ﷺ), and they would learn to back-off because just within that year, you won’t have to pick up any arms, you are just gonna walk right in. And all of that began with the first domino that fell, the Treaty of Hudaybiyyah.

And Allah sums all of that up with one ayah:

(اِنَّا فَتَحْنَا لَكَ فَتْحًا مُّبِيْنًاۙ).

“Clearly, for you We have given a special kind of victory.”

“We have given a special kind of victory.”

Wallahi, I tell you something. In Arabic, (اِنَّا فَتَحْنَا فَتْحًا مُّبِيْنًا لَكَ) is expected.

The jar majroor is supposed to beat the end in grammar, when you make it muqaddam, it actually becomes mukhtash. Which means; especially for you We have given a clear victory.

You know what that means? This is the last few comments I have for you. Again, this is not the full lecture on the subject, this is just a thought I have thus far.

Insha Allahu ta’ala make dua, I’m able to complete the study, and do something comprehensive because personally I believe Muslims need to understand Suratul Fath very very clearly because this is the surah of victory. And I personally believe there’s a lot of confusion among us on what victory means.

-Is this salah time already or?-

So one last thing about (اِنَّا فَتَحْنَا لَكَ فَتْحًا مُّبِيْنًاۙ).

How do countries win in wars? By bombing, by killing, by war, by overpowering the forces, by sending tanks into the city. Isn’t that how they win wars?

And even when they take over, if a military takes over a country, does that necessarily mean that the people that live inside that country have given up? Has it happened in the world today that there’s a military from another country, it takes over, it’s invaded, but the people have not accepted it.

Does that happen? So you cannot call that a clear victory. It’s a military victory, but it’s not a victory of the hearts of the people. It’s not even a complete military victory. It’s not a victory in every sense of the word. It’s maybe just a victory against the army, but not a victory against the people. It’s not in every sense of the word. You understand?

So it’s very difficult to say in wars that a victory is absolutely clear. You get me? In the Fathu Makkah, Allah says, (اِنَّا فَتَحْنَا لَكَ فَتْحًا).

Not just (فَتْحًا).

(اِنَّا فَتَحْنَا لَكَ فَتْحًا مُّبِيْنًاۙ).

It’s going to be clear. The clearest victory in human history is the victory given to Rasulullah (ﷺ), and that victory wasn’t even the result of war. It wasn’t even the result of war.

Muslim Must Discipline

It was a result of strategy. It was a result of patience. More important than anything else, it was the result of discipline. It was the result of discipline. The Sahabah are the ultimate victory, not because they go into the battlefield, because they obey the Messenger (ﷺ) unconditionally.

When he tells them to put the ihram on, they put their ihram on.

When he takes it off, they take it off.

When they walk to Makkah, they walk to Makkah.

When they have to walk back, they’ll walk back.

No complaints. No complaints.

We want victory. Allah is telling us the prerequisites. We have to have discipline. We have to have control over our emotions. We cannot be mobs, angry mobs, that can’t think clearly. We have to be people that understand the definition of victory from Allah’s book. We have to become these thoughtful people.

You know. The Ummah today, the last thing you find in us is discipline. It’s so sad.

The last thing you see in us is discipline. We don’t even have discipline in the way we park our cars outside the masjid. By the way, when salat begins, it’s beautiful discipline.

We could be anywhere, our kids could be going crazy. When (قَدْ قَامَتِ الصَّلاة قَدْ قَامَتِ الصَّلاة). We all line up perfectly. Is that the case? Everybody checks their feet. Everybody lines up perfectly? And as soon as salat is done, we go back to chaos again.

The salat five times a day, what does it teach us? Discipline. And actually it proves that Muslims are capable of amazing discipline. You cannot find any other religion that just a simple call is made.

(اَللهُ اَكْبَرُ،اَللهُ اَكْبَرُ أَشْهَدُ اَنْ لاَ إِلٰهَ إِلَّااللهُ)
(اَشْهَدُ اَنَّ مُحَمَّدًا رَسُوْلُ اللهِ حَيَّ عَلَى الصَّلاَةِ حَيَّ عَلَى الفَلاح)

Qad qama… and all the conversations will stop. All cell phones will turn off,everything will go dark, everybody will stop playing,everybody will stop sitting down, everybody will stand up perfectly lined up like an army.

Even though they don’t know each other, they’ve never trained together. They don’t even know who the generalis who is leading the prayer. They don’t know nothing but they will line up immediately. That is impossible anywhere else, other than this religion. We are a people of discipline.

But unfortunately, outside of salah, what we learn in salah, needs to now come outside of salah. We need to become disciplined people.

Conclusion

These are some thoughts that I wanted to share with you. Especially with the younger generation here. Just to illustrate that there’s a lot to think about in Allah’s book. There’s a lot to reflect in this Deen. A lot to understand, a lot to grasp.

And if we begin to become people who deeply, truly understand the book of Allah, then we will be in a better position to act on the book of Allah.

If you want to act on the book of Allah, you first have to understand the book of Allah. If you don’t have a good understanding, you are not going to have a good action. You are not going to have good implementation of Allah’s book. And this book is not like a magazine. It’s not like an article or a blog. You can’t just read it just like this, and, “I get it, I get it.”

(أَفَلا يَتَدَبَّرُونَ الْقُرْآنَ)

“Don’t they reflect deeply on the Quran.”

Every ayah, you have to think about it. You have to ponder over it. You have to study it. You have to dive in like you are diving into an ocean. And then you will get the wisdom that you can act on. You can’t just casually browse through it. It’s not a casual read. You can’t skim through the Qur’an to get its treasure.

You understand that? We unfortunately, today we have a very shallow appreciation of the Qur’an. We have to change that in our culture. We have to become a culture of people that celebrate tadabbur in the Qur’an. Tafakkur in the Qur’an. Ta’allum of the Qur’an. Studying tafsir of the Qur’an in depth. Studying its language in depth. Understanding it and pondering over it. Discussing it in depth. So that we can all act on it in the way we are supposed to act on it.

That is my dua for this Ummah. That may Allah (عز و جل) really make us a people that are connected with His book the way we are suppose to be connected. That understand it in the most pure, most refined way, in the way it was suppose to be understood.

May Allah (عز و جل) make us a people of the Qur’an that don’t become lax in regards to it. The month of the Qur’an is still fresh in our hearts. We just came out of Ramadan, but don’t let it dry up so easily. Study Allah’s book, guys. Study Allah’s book.

You spend your nights discussing world politics and nothing has changed. How about you spend your nights memorizing a surah or two. How about spending your nights studying the book of Allah a little bit more. If the world won’t change, at least you will change. At least you will change.

And Wallahi, when you change, then the world changes. Until you don’t change, the world will not change. The world will not change.

The Sahaba were the ultimate change. They brought an amazing transformation within themselves by Allah’s book. And because of the change inside of themselves, and Allah gave victory in their hands. Victory of conquest was nothing. That was just nothing. You know? That was insignificant.

This dunya was created for us. It’s been made for us. We have to prove to Allah that we are just for Him. When we prove to Allah that we are for Him, then He will hand dunya over us. No big deal to Him. It’s nothing to Him. Subhanallah.

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