The Friday Message - Issue No: 357 - Dahwul Ardh: What is your role?

The Friday Message - Issue No: 357 - Dahwul Ardh: What is your role?

Salamun alaykum,

Challenges to our home, the earth:

The issues of pollution, green-house effect, depletion of ozone layer and destruction of the environment is having a severe impact on the earth; our home. The serious effects of climate change are evident through hurricanes, droughts, floods and other extreme climatic events. Its impact on our daily lives is becoming increasingly apparent. 

What then is our response?

Allah SWT has created the universe in all its diversity, richness and vitality: the stars, the sun and moon, the earth and all its communities of living beings. All these reflect and manifest the boundless glory and mercy of their Creator. All created beings by nature serve and glorify their Maker, all bowing to their Lord’s will. The Noble Qur’an in Sura Al-Baqara (2:30) declares that a purpose for creation of man on Earth is to be a khalifasteward- of Allah SWT on this earth. This verse underscores the purpose for creation of man; to be a steward of God on this earth. 

Therefore, our response, as stewards, is to work the greatest good we can for all the species; individuals and generations of all God’s creatures. 

Stewardship: Is it part-time?

As stewards of this planet earth, man has been charged with an important assignment. This is to tend well this earth on which we live as our home.  Highlighting our responsibility towards the Earth the Noble Prophet SAWW stated, “Safeguard the Earth because it is your mother…..”

Just as one is always obliged to respect one’s mother and protect her from any harm, so too is the duty of safeguarding the Earth. This responsibility is not part time. It is such that it is not limited to a certain age or time. Like for the mother, care for the Earth is one that is full time; it is a lifetime responsibility. 

Creation of our home: spread of earth day: The 25th Dhulqa'dah commemorates Dahwul Ardh –spread of the earth. Alluding to the spread of the earth, the Noble Qur’an states,“…and after that He (Allah) spread out the earth.” (Sura An-Naazi-at. 79:30).  

On this day Allah SWT spread out all the land on the earth from the point under the Ka’aba for the advantage of human beings. In another tradition it is reported that the first Rahmah- Divine Blessing-descended on this very day. It is also the day when Prophet Adam was sent to Earth. This day is also the birthday of two great Prophets, Prophet Ibrahim (Abraham), and Prophet Isa bin Maryam (Jesus), peace be upon them. 

What is your role?

As stewards of the earth Dahwul Ardh presents an opportunity to appreciate our ‘home’ -the earth. It highlights the essential role for a steward to protect and conserve our environment. This environment is for both the physical dimension (such as conservation water, energy, environment etc) and spiritual dimension (by being grateful, upholding justice, promoting peace, conserving taqwa etc). In fulfilling this role of conservation, one is actually performing ibadah; an act of worship. The teachings from the Quran and Ahadith of Ahlul Bayt a.s. encourage us (using a modern term) to ‘be green’

Opportunity for reflection:

Next week in observing Dahwul Ardh on Tuesday 14th July, 2020, ponder over this God given blessing of the Earth; our home. What is the earth? Why was the earth created? Do we benefit from the earth for the purpose it was created? Are we making the earth a shelter of peace, or an arena of disunity, war and pollution? What is the remedy for these crises? 

Just as in the way one takes good care of the home for which one looks forward to returning to after a hard day of work, how well does one take good care of the bigger home – our planet earth- in which our small dwelling that we call as home is situated? How are you involved in safeguarding the Earth; your mother as referred by the Noble Prophet?   

Let Dahwul Ardh be a celebration of true faith and concern, and a celebration of thanking Ar Rahman, Al Khaaliq -the All-Merciful Creator- who created the world- our home for our own good. 

As you perform the recommended a’mals of Dahwul Ardh, will you make a firm decision and resolve in utilizing this earth as a means for a good and eternally secure Hereafter? What changes will you bring to your living to act on this resolution for Dahwul Ardh


Wa ma tawfiqi illa billah.

With salaams and duas,

Sheikh Fazle Abbas Datoo
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Resident Alim
Wessex Shia Ithna Asheri Jamaat