Islam is the Religion of Love
Ahmed Mirza M.D.
Secretary/Treasurer, Naqshbandiya Foundation For Islamic Education
The Naqshbandiya Foundation is honored to host and sponsor the First International Milad-un-Nabi Conference 1994, in this great city of Chicago. We welcome you all with loving hearts, the scholars, the Sufis, the professors, Qasida and Naat reciters, and participants, the lovers of Allah and His Rasul sallalaho Alaihe wa sallam. This Milad gathering is a conference of love. Islam is a religion of love. Muslims are loving, kind, compassionate, tolerant, moderate, and positive thinking individuals, who practice love and kindness towards others. A loving Muslim with a sensitive heart observes certain adab, code of ethics and morality, a special spiritual courtesy. There are adab for every aspect of life and we insha Allah will observe the special adab for the Milad celebration. The theme of the conference is "Love of Allah Subhana wa Taala and His beloved Prophet sallalaho Alaihe wa sallam."
Love is an emotional state who's reality cannot be expressed in words. Wudd in Arabic means highest form of love, and is mentioned in the Quran: 'Innallazina' aamanuu wa 'amilus-saalihaati' sayaj-'alulahumur-Rahmaanu Wuddaa. Lo! Those who believe and do good works, the Beneficent will appoint for them love (Al-Quran 19:96). Here Rahma, mercy and Wudd, love are used together. In another place in the Quran, Wudd (love) and Ghufran (forgiveness) are mentioned together. Wa Huwal-Ghafuurul-Waduud. And He is the Forgiving and the Loving (Al-Quran 85:14). Rahm (mercy) and Wudd (love) are mentioned together in this ayat. Wastaghfiruu Rabba-Kum Summa tuu-buuu 'ilayh; 'innarabbi Rahimun wwaduud. Ask pardon of your Lord and then turn unto Him (repentant). Lo! my Lord is Merciful, Loving. Al-Waddud is one of the Beautiful Names of Allah Subhana Taala, meaning source of Love. He has endowed the human beings with an unlimited capacity to develop love. Hubb in Arabic also means love and is mentioned in the Quran. Wallaziina 'aamanuu 'ashaddu hubbal-lillah. Those who believe are stauncher in their love for Allah (Al-Quran 2:165). In Hadith Hubb is mentioned as wal Hubbu Asasi. Prophet sallalaho Alaihe wa sallam said, " Love is my foundation." Love is an essential part of our faith. We the Muslims; therefore, love Allah Subhana wa Taala Who is Rubb al Alamin, the Creator of the universe. We love Prophet sallalaho Alaihe wa sallam who is Rahmatul Lil Alamin, mercy for the universe. The Muslims also love Allah's creations and creatures. Ishq, in Persian and Urdu means, ardent love and is derived from Ashiqa a creeper plant meaning that when love takes its root in the heart of the lover, everything other than Beloved, Allah Taala, is effaced. Nothing other than Beloved exists and this is Ishq (love) of Allah, Ishq-e-Ilahi, and is the meaning of La ilaha illalah. Love (Wudd, Hubb, Ishq) for our beloved Prophet sallalaho Alaihe wa sallam is also the foundation of our faith, and this is Ishq-e-Rasul (love of Prophet sallalaho Alaihe wa sallam) and the meaning of Mohammad ur Rasullalah.
At the end I want to quote a Hadith selected from a book by Mufti Mohammad Amin Naqshbandi which describes the theme of our conference. " Reportedly somebody asked the Holy Prophet sallalaho Alaihe wa sallam, O' Apostle of Allah when will I become a real and confirmed momin (Believer)?" The Prophet sallalaho Alaihe wa sallam replied, " When you will love Allah." He again asked, " My lord when will I begin loving Allah?" The Prophet sallalaho Alaihe wa sallam said, " When you will love His Prophet sallalaho Alaihe wa sallam." He asked, " When will I begin loving his Prophet sallalaho Alaihe wa sallam?" The Prophet sallalaho Alaihe wa sallam finally observed, " This will be when you obey his orders, follow in his footsteps, and observe his Sunnah."
The great Muslim poet and positive thinker Allama Mohammad Iqbal said,
" Dar dile Muslim maqame Mustafa ast
Abrue ma ze name Mustafa ast."
In the Muslim's heart there is a special place of respect and love for the Prophet sallalaho Alaihe wa sallam and our honor, esteem, and identity are linked with the name of Mustafa sallalaho Alaihe wa sallam. I finish my talk with this prayer, " Allah nourish me with Your love and also nourish me with the love of those who can take me close to You. Amin!"
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