Listening to the Prophets
Throughout the history of mankind, prophets have brought
spiritual guidance to free mankind from the slavery of anger, lust,
hatred and violence. But sadly, their true message has been largely lost
in the clutter of man-made rules and self-centered interpretations.
In the Qur'an, we are told that the message of all
the prophets should be heard and understood, not just one specific
prophet. The revelation that we should "make no distinction between one
and another of His messengers" is repeated several times in order to
emphasize how important this really is:
Surely those who disbelieve in Allah and His messengers and (those
who) desire to make a distinction between Allah and His messengers
and say: We believe in some and disbelieve in others, and desire to
take a course between (this and) that.
Such are disbelievers in truth; and for disbelievers We prepare a
And those who believe in Allah and His messengers and do not make a
distinction between any of them-- Allah will grant them their
rewards; and Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.
surah al-nisa (4.150-152)
Say ye: "We believe in Allah, and the revelation given to us, and to
Abraham, Isma'il, Isaac, Jacob, and the Tribes, and that given to
Moses and Jesus, and that given to (all) prophets from their Lord:
We make no difference between one and another of them: And we bow to
Allah (in Islam)."
surah al-baqarah (2.136)
Say: We believe in Allah and what has been revealed to us, and what
was revealed to Ibrahim and Ismail and Ishaq and Yaqoub and the
tribes, and what was given to Musa and Isa and to the prophets from
their Lord; we do not make any distinction between any of them, and
to Him do we submit.
surah al-'imran (3.84)
The Messenger believeth in what hath been revealed to him from his
Lord, as do the men of faith. Each one (of them) believeth in Allah,
His angels, His books, and His messengers. "We make no distinction
(they say) between one and another of His messengers." And they say:
"We hear, and we obey: (We seek) Thy forgiveness, our Lord, and to
Thee is the end of all journeys."
surah al-baqarah (2.285)
Some have taught that only one certain prophet has been
given the message, or that only one specific prophet has received the
message correctly. But that is not the truth. That is simply the
on-going battle between the head and the heart.
The head (the selfish ego) will always try to divide and
separate everything, while the heart longs for unity and oneness.
Throughout the ages, mankind has all too often followed the guidance of
the head, and not the guidance of the heart.
The head, the self-centered ego, will attempt to take
credit for everything of merit, when in fact everything of merit occurs
only by the grace of Allah. The head will attempt to divide everything,
and will produce a sense of "I", "me", "mine" which separates and
isolates every person, bringing division and strife.
That unfortunate situation has led us to such
foolishness as war, violence, anger, hatred and division into various
sects one against the other.
The Qur'an warns us about such division:
And verily this Brotherhood of yours is a single
Brotherhood, and I am your Lord and Cherisher:
therefore fear Me (and no other).
But people have cut off their affair (of unity), between them, into
each party rejoices in that which is with itself.
But leave them in their confused ignorance for a time.
surah al-mu'nimun (23.52-54)
As for those who divide their religion and break up into sects,
thou hast no part in them in the least: their affair is with Allah:
He will in the end tell them the truth of all that they did.
surah al-anam (6.159)
Turn ye back in repentance to Him, and fear Him:
establish regular prayers, and be not ye among those who join gods
or those who split up their Religion, and become (mere) Sects,-
each party rejoicing in that which is with itself!
surah al-rum (30.31-32)
Inevitably this will lead to the question: which messages should we
listen to?? Clearly there are lunatics in this world who should not be
followed. How then can we distinguish which messages to listen to?
The answer is simple: we must follow the heart, not the
The heart is the peaceful temple of the Almighty
The head is full of incessant earthly chatter.
The heart strives for unity.
The head is attracted to division.
The heart enjoys loving-kindness.
The head finds expression through anger and
The heart is filled with understanding.
The head is the master of selfish
The heart is full of answers and "knowing".
The head is full of questions and arguments.
The heart expresses love and generosity.
The head thrives on selfishness and domination.
|The heart knows that it is an instrument of God.
||The head believes in its own accomplishments.
|The heart knows only the unity of "Thou"
||The head knows only "me", "mine", "I"
Wherever one finds a message of the heart, it should be
honored, and wherever one finds a message of the head, it should be
viewed with suspicion. That is, if the message is unity, brotherhood,
love, understanding, compassion and generosity, then there is something
worth listening to. But if the message is of division, anger, hatred,
greed and selfishness, then it should be avoided.
The heart should be allowed to lead and the head should
follow. For all too many people, their head is continually leading them
into the suffering of anger, greed, lust and confusion. Indeed, the head
is an excellent servant, but a terrible master.
The thoughts of the head will divide, separate and
isolate due to its excessive preoccupation with "I", "me" "mine". In contrast, the heart
will unify, connect and embrace all of creation. Which will you choose?
Only the heart can understand the message of the
prophets. Follow your heart, give all credit and all praise to Allah,
and discover the ever-present guidance of the One, the Only One, who can
transform life from mere drudgery into glorious splendor.