Saturday, March 22, 2014

Miracles and God - Courtesy of the Muslim Chaplaincy

Every single thing around us is a miracle and one of the may countless wonders of Allah’s (God’s) creation. Whether it be the profound way in which our body works day in and day out to keep us going till our death, or the way nature evolves through the different seasons. From the minute to the bigger things in the world, we’re always taught to understand, as the Quran teaches us, that these are all the the magnificence of Allah’s creation. But I’m not going to lie, up until very recently, I don’t think I truly took this heart and really contemplated about it.

I recently started taking a course downtown through the Muslim Chaplaincy at the University of Toronto called “Knowing The One,” which explores our understanding of God, from an Islamic and theological perspective. It was only a week or so ago, where the instructor asked us to contemplate about miracles and our understanding of it. In the western society, if you think about it, miracles are anything out of the ordinary. For instance, he gave us this example about a doctor who appeared on Oprah and has been delivering babies for a very long time, and since he’s been seeing it happen on a regular basis day in and day out, it’s sort become a “norm” per say. But he came on Oprah because he was talking about a miraculous case, where the baby was born and wasn’t crying or doing anything, and then suddenly, started crying. Given that he had never seen anything like this in his career, he considered this to be a miracle – something out of the ordinary that he has experienced for the first time, and therefore, as a society, we accept this to be a miracle as well.

Our entire worldview is based on our own experiences – so similar to this doctor, first time we see a child being born, it’s a miracle, but then you know what to expect. As such, if you witness it again, your attitude is pretty much “meh, I knew that was going to happen.” The more I think about this approach in our way of being and thinking, the more I realize it to be true. I was talking to a friend about this very topic, and she shared an incident with me; her and her husband were in an elevator in the CN Tower and there were a group of out of towners, who were so fascinated and marvelled being in the elevator – you could see the sheer excitement and intrigue on their faces.

Think about this for one more second.

 For us, being in an elevator – standing and being taken up miles and miles above ground is no big deal because of our repeated experiences that we’ve taken for granted. However, you have people going through similar experiences, for the very first time, and they’re in complete awe.

Back to the class, the instructor then made a comment that has resonated with me ever since – what an arrogant way of thinking we have. If we don’t experience something as we expect it, we claim it to be a miracle. If we do experience it, no matter how miraculous it may be (the fact that we can see or the way our eyes work of that matter), we expect it and thereby take it for granted.

It’s all about the “me, myself and I” mentality.

We fail to give thanks and gratitude to He who is always constant, He who never ceases to exists, He who despite my thanklessness to Him for eyes that can see, hands that can type, an intellect that can think, parents, family, friends – continues to give and provide ways to and for me, even with my ungrateful attitude.

I’m sitting in a plane as I type this, and as the plane was taking off and the sun was slowly setting,  thinking and reflecting about all of this, I have only but one word – SubhanAlalh – how absolutely perfect is all this, Alhamdullilah – all greatness is due to Him.

If you haven’t already heard, the Muslim Chaplaincy is reaching out to the community to provide funding so that Muslim youth within the university have support, guidance and access to an outlet, where spiritual well-being can be provided.

Even if you can’t commit to $30/month, given. Even if it is a dollar today, at this very moment – because know that every single student that benefits and comes closer to the deen, you will get reward for both. And which one of us are not in need of His mercy?

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