Practical Steps For Internal Reform - Arbaeen 1436/2014

A'udhu billahi min al-Shaytan al-Rajim, Bismillah al-Rahman al-Rahim

[Extract from Nahjul Balagha Sermon 1] Al-hamdulilah aladhi laa yablughu mid-hatahul qaa'iloon, wala yuhsee na'maa'ahul 'aadoon, wala yu'adee haqqahul mujtahidoon, alladhi la yudrikuhu bu'dul himam, wala yanahulu ghawsul fitan. Thumma al-salaatu wal-salaamu 'ala ashrafil anbiyaa' wal mursaleen, habeeb quloobina wa tabeebi nufoosina wa shafee'i dhunoobina, sayyidina wa mawlaana Abal Qasim Muhammad. [Allahumma salli 'ala Muhammad wa aale Muhammad wa ajjal faraj] Wa 'ala aale baytihi al-tayyibeen al-taahireen al-ma'soomeen al-madhloomeen, la siyama baqiyyat-Allah fil aradheen, saahib al-asr wal-zaman, khalifat al-Rahman, Imam al-insi wal-jaan, wa la'an Allah a'daa'ahum ajma'een ilaa yawm-il-deen. Ama ba'd, faqad qaal Allah wa qawluhul haqq, Bismillahil rahman al-rahim Waladheena jaahadu feena la-nahdiyyanahum subuluna, wa in-Allaha la-ma'al muhsineen. (29:69)Sadaq-Allah al-'aliyu al-'adhim. Sallu 'ala Muhammad wa aale Muhammad. [Allahumma salli 'ala Muhammad wa aale Muhammad wa ajjal farajhum]

Our discussion now for the past three nights has been revolving around the reform of the Ummah, and talking about the fact that when we want to fix what is happening in the world, when we examine what is happening all over the world, our heart bleeds of course, we are in pain, we sometimes feel helpless. We sometimes feel like we are out of control. And in the process, we oftentimes search for the right path, and what is my duty and what is my responsibility, and being in this part of the world, there is only so much that we can do. But sometimes even that bare minimum is not done by us, whether it is to speak out against the tyranny of oppression, whether it is to attend protests and marches that are organized in the city, whether it is to support the leadership or the maraja'een who are out there, at least vocally speaking out against what is happening all over the world, or whether it is at work or at school, possibly debating, discussing, talking about these issues with those who may not have enough information.

All of these things are the bare minimum that can be done during these trying times for the Ummah. However, our focus for the past two nights has been about the individual. We mentioned that for us to first fix the Ummah, we must first fix our communities, and then our families and then of course, our individual selves as well. We mentioned that a failed community, a failed family and by extension a failed Ummah is a failed Ummah due to the fact that the individuals that are comprised of that community or Ummah are also in their individual lives - failures.

Their direction towards Allah, their piety towards Allah, is not sufficient. In fact, it is very superficial for lack of a better word. It is very 'dhaaheri', it is very outer. Nothing truly penetrates deep inside of that ibaadah that they might be performing. And so we talked about the idea of us first initially fixing ourselves and then fixing those around us. And that essentially is one of the main components towards the arrival of our Imam, that if we are wishing for him to come, if we are begging for him to come and of course we are, then he needs individuals who are strong in their imaan. We talked about very dangerous historical personalities last night, that were with the Imams, walked and talked with the Imams, saw the Imams, witnessed their greatness. But when it came time for them to display their commitments, their loyalty, they were nowhere to be found.

And today, as promised, we speak a little bit about practical steps to ensure that this bubble we talked about last night, the bubble of superficial worship, the bubble of 'Look, I pray salaat, I fast, I give my khums, I do this much', and then we fall into what is called complacency, we talked about that two nights ago, those who were with me. We talked about the fact that sometimes we worship Allah out of habit. We worship Allah out of the fact that it is an everyday thing, everyday occurrence. This idea of a mi'raaj, the idea of an ascension, this idea of moving up towards Allah through this worship, I really do not feel that. I do not get it. So we do what we can within the bubble. And if the fitna and the test of this era that we live in, is asking us to break that bubble, we can not do it. All I know is the bubble I have created for myself.

How do we ensure that we do what the right thing is to do when the time is right? It is one thing to know Haqq, it is one thing to know what is right. Right now, I am sure everybody in this room, mashaAllah, knows what is right and what is wrong. At least you should know now, by now, it should be very obvious who the enemies of our Imam will be, and who the supporters of our Imam will be. If there is still confusion, you have to check yourself, and make sure that your eyes are not closed. Knowing it is one thing, when it comes time for you to display it, that is a whole different ball game altogether. Many, many, many people have failed in, not the identification of the Haqq, but the displaying and the defending of the Haqq when the time was right.

There were people who gave bay'at to Ali in Ghadeer and were responsible for shedding his blood in Kufa. There were people who knew full well who Husayn ibn Ali was, reminded them time and time again, their response was of course, we know who you are, you are the beloved grandson of our Holy Prophet, and yet they behead the man. Many individuals in history are like that. How do we avoid ourselves from falling into those traps? Let us examine two very important factors tonight, inshaAllah, with your help. Sallu 'ala Muhammad wa aale Muhammad. [Allahumma salli 'ala Muhammad wa aale Muhammad wa ajjal farajhum]

Let me also recognize that this moment, if I can, very briefly, the efforts and the work of all of you, alhamdulilah. My first time here in Dearborn, this is my ninth day, and I have gotten to know a few of you, and it has been an honor. And everything I have heard about you has been absolutely true, al-Hamdulillah. You are a vibrant group, you are a passionate group. You are a group that requires some leadership and some direction. But it is the passion that I see sometimes in all of you, especially those who are sometimes responsible for putting something like this together that the Imam needs. The Imam needs that passion. The Imam needs that love. The Imam needs people to not sit at the home and wait for some leader to come and save the day, but rather say, you know what, if we do not have that leadership, that is fine, until that leadership arrives, let us do what we can to prolong and to preserve the mission of the Imam. May Allah bless all of you, and to see young guys and young sisters like this, it is for me motivation. It is for me a cause of encouragement and al-hamdulillah, may Allah subhanah wa ta'ala bless all of you. I am honored and privileged all of you allowed someone like me to spend these days of Arba'een with all of you. It has been a short three lecture series and inshaAllah in the future it will be longer. But at least in these past nine to ten days, I was able to get a little bit more encouragement and the future does seem a little bit more brighter than it did before I got here. Sallu 'ala Muhammad wa aale Muhammad. [Allahumma salli 'ala Muhammad wa aale Muhammad wa ajjal farajhum]

Two factors of many factors that need to be discussed, but because we do not have time, two factors.

Number one: A man approaches our seventh Imam, Imam Al-Kadhim, alayhi al salaat wal salaam, [Allahumma salli 'ala Muhammad wa aale Muhammad wa ajjal farajhum] and he begins to complain to our Imam about his situation. His lack of money and the stress he has, he has no job, he has to feed his family, he is having a tough life. Things are never easy for me, Imam. He makes a complaint to the Imam, and the Imam listens. There are always those individuals who, you know, when you see someone like that, especially during the Imams' times, they would come and instead of gaining some knowledge from the Imam, they just unload on the Imam their problems. Sometimes they present themselves like they are the only ones right now who are facing difficulty. The Imam, after he has done praise for this man, it is a beautiful gift, it is a du'a from the Imam, from the infallible ma'soom Imam, you got a du'a, what more do you want? But the man continues to complain about his state. It was not sufficient with the du'a of the ma'soom.

When he was done for a second time, the Imam says something very beautiful. He says, you know what the problem is with you? You are seeking the impossible. You are searching for ultimate happiness in this world, you are seeking contentment in this world, you are looking for serenity in this world. And these two terms, happiness and the dunya, contentment and the dunya, serenity and the dunya, are oxymorons, antithetical, opposites. They are an impossible pairing. What you cannot find in this world is what you seek from this world, and that is your downfall.

Sometimes you and I fall into that exact same trap. Now, I am not here to paint a hopeless picture, but I am here to paint a real picture for all of you that ultimately true happiness does not exist in this world, can not exist in this world. Now, you will sit there and tell me that I know people who are happy on the outside. I look at them, look at their lives, and they seem happy. Great job, great salary, huge house, beautiful car, white picket fence, a great spouse, two kids, three kids, all well behaved. To me they are happy on the outside. And sometimes what ends up happening is that we look to ten other people wishing that we had their life. We envy them.

We sometimes wonder, what did I do wrong that I could not get this life? And what we do not understand sometimes is while you are looking at ten other people's lives wishing that you had their life, there are ten other people looking at you, wishing that they had your life.

It is all relative, guys, there is no absolute happiness in this world. And the trap of the dunya that sometimes we fall into strips our ibaadah from any talk of ascension, because we do things that we do for this dunya. I am praying salaat so I can get a raise in my job. I am fasting, I am doing some extra worship, maybe I will have the respect of the people in this world. If you do not do things for the aakhira, it becomes superficial, watered down, thinned out, stripped of its essence, a hollow figure. Because sometimes the reality is, and the example I used at Zainabiyya a few nights ago, I will use here as well, it is a new crowd. We get stuck and we get trapped and we get distracted and pulled in by the false idols of this dunya.

And sometimes we actually convince ourselves that 'Person A, family B over there, they are happy. I am sure they are happy. They are happy for this reason.' And the reason why we believe they are happy is the primary reason why they are miserable sometimes. Because when you search deep inside of a family, individual, that might on the outside look like they have everything, you will know that they are equally as miserable in this dunya as you are. They are equally going through that test as you are. This world was not meant to give us contentment. This is not where you find this. The results of the test of this world is serenity in the hereafter. Wait for that over there. Work for that over here. Do not look for it here. Work for it here. And you will end up getting it in the hereafter.

The example I use is - we are in a university right now, right? You have UM Dearborn. Some of you I know might attend here. The example I used, and those of you who were there with me, you can excuse my repetition for a moment, was the examination hall example. My first year university class, I remember, Psychology. I was one of 400 students. I came from high school where the average class size was thirty, maybe twenty five. Quite a big jump. I want you to imagine a first year university student. It is finals week. You are entering into the final examination hall. Now to host four hundred students at one time, you need a very massive hall. And sometimes, at least in my day, the university would choose the most beautiful auditorium, naturally, to hold such a large crowd. And usually the auditorium is a very attractive auditorium. All the bells and whistles are in there.

I want you to imagine a first year university student walks into the examination hall, first time in the auditorium, and he is wowed, taken aback, he looks around. He thinks, oh my goodness, what a hall this is. What a beautiful hall this is. Look at the carpet. Look at the paint on the wall. Look at the projectors, the smart boards. Look at the stadium seating. This is beautiful. The chandelier and the engraving. You are completely in awe. And for half an hour into the exam, you are consumed with the examination hall until your prof. comes and taps on the shoulder, says, look, buddy, you are not here to be wowed by the examination hall. You are here to write the exam, write the exam and go. Do not waste your time being wowed and distracted by the examination hall.

Sometimes we are wowed and distracted by this dunya, until someone should come and say, look, you are not here to be wowed by the dunya. You are here to write the exam, write your test and move on. If you pass the test with flying colors, there are a thousand auditoriums on that side waiting for you to be wowed by. The trap of the dunya. We have to be very, very careful about it.

And yes, I need some more time to elaborate on what the dunya is, what the aakhera is. Many of us believe it is a physical world. It is not. Allama Majlisi, rahmatAllah 'aleyh, Imam Khomeini, rahmatAllah 'aleyh, both of them, and Imam Khomeini's 'Forty Hadith' talks about this idea, I believe, in Hadith number 13. He says, the essence of the dunya and the aakhera are not physical worlds. Rather, they are states of existences, meaning that those collective components that pull you away from the dhikr of Allah is called the dunya, and those collective ideologies that pull you towards Allah is the aakhera.

What a beautiful definition that is by our ullamaa' buzurgaan, amazing. It is not a physical world, it is not this concept that some of us believe that as long as I am in this world, I will be miserable. No. If you allow yourself to be engulfed by those things that pull you away from the path of your purpose in this world -that, of course, is going to be your downfall. How many times have we seen a little bit of the waving of dunya and people have sold out their souls?

That is why where Islam draws the line, it is not for you not to have a nice house or a nice car or clothing from head to toe. No, a mu'min, a mu'mina, should be presenting themselves on the outside to be beautiful, on the inside as well to be beautiful, of course within the shari'a limits. Where Islam draws the line is Zuhud, it is detachment from the world.

That - yes, you might work hard to become a doctor, a lawyer, an engineer, an accountant, an entrepreneur; a lot of you, mashaAllah, are pre-med in this room, pre-law. You guys have your future in terms of your secular education laid out for you. That is great. Fantastic. The passion for education I see sometimes in this country is better than my country, that is for sure. And with that, with all that effort, all that mehnat, all that struggle that you are doing with your school, comes a nice salary, comes perks. I am not asking anybody here to live in a shack of a house and drive a clunker of a car. No, this dunya is yours. Allah created this dunya for you, and He created you for Him. But where Allah and where the Ahlulbayt draw that red, solid, dark line is Zuhud. Do not attach yourself to these things, do not place a price on them higher than their actual value.

That is why Amir al mu'mineen says, if you are going to sell your soul out in this world, it better be for something that is higher than Jannah in price. Because that is where you should be headed. It is towards heaven in the hereafter. If you find anything in this world better than Jannah, an everlasting abode of peace, then sell your soul out. No problem. If you do not find anything, do not sell your soul.

Why can not we break our bubble sometimes? It is because dunya has us in its clutches. Sometimes I know individuals, and perhaps I should not share this with you, I know individuals in the Hawza, when you ask them why did you come here? What is your story? You know, we see individuals sometimes from ninety plus different countries in the Hawza in Qom. We are intrigued. Right? It is one thing where, you know, he is from Lebanon or she is from Iraq or, you know, he is from Pakistan. That is quite obvious sometimes. But when you see a couple of guys from China, from Russia, from Bangladesh, from Chile, you get intrigued. I want to hear your story, man. How did you end up here? Sometimes they tell me that I am here to study for a little bit and go back and begin tableegh worldwide. I want to be an international scholar. I want to have the fame and the fortune of the international scholars before me, I want my name plastered all over Twitter and Facebook. I want memes made about me, I want images made about me, I want these action shots to be stilled. I want these intro videos to be made about me where Hassan Salami is reciting a beautiful poem. Why not me? Why Sheikh Mehdi, right? That is what I want. It is unfortunate that you are in the Hawza in Qom, in the beautiful piece of heaven this dunya has to offer. And even in that, you find the dunya in here somewhere.

Be careful, this trap is vicious. How many times, how many traditions have you heard, about Amir al mu'mineen divorcing the dunya, talking about the beautiful python, cyprian smooth on the outside, spewing venom from the inside. How many times have you heard it? And sometimes, you know, me growing up, I would hear it. I am like, yeah, it make sense, whatever, this and that, I don't get it. The snake idea. As I got older, I understood. You get a little bit of fame, little bit of fortune, a little bit of name. All of a sudden, now, your chest is up to here, your head is in the clouds, you are one inch above the ground until sometimes, one time, once in a while, God sends you a message and brings you down.

We have stories, individuals who believed that they were invincible and God sometimes would destroy them with what? With wind, with water, with small pebbles from the sky, not with major giant armies. No, not with strong individuals. No. Sometimes a sandstorm, sometimes a flood. Sometimes birds in the sky dropping small pebbles on elephants just to kind of make sure that you understand who you are. Take it easy. Let us bring you back down to earth a little bit. The trap of the dunya. Let us be careful. The people of Kufa, very very quickly ... Sallu 'ala Muhammad wa aale Muhammad. [Allahumma salli 'ala Muhammad wa aale Muhammad wa ajjal farajhum]

I mentioned a few nights ago. Sometimes our misconception is that if a group of people lack the baseerat or insight during a certain portion of history, they are like that generally. Not the case. I talked about the fact that the people of Kufa, during the time of Amir al mu'mineen, was all he had. Twelve thousand people came from Kufa to Basra to defend Amir al mu'mineen in the war of Jamal. But then we have those same individuals from Kufa during the time of Imam Husayn.

I mentioned to you twelve thousand letters across 15 days, handwritten, a letter factory going out, day in and day out, all night long they are writing letters. They are being told by the heads of their tribes, do not write a letter to send to Husayn ibn Ali unless you are ready to defend the man. Do not waste his time. Do not waste my time as the head of your tribe. Letters were written, this revolution was stirring in Kufa. Muslim arrives in Kufa, twelve thousand letters became eighteen thousand people for bay'at. Yazeed gets news of this, the governor of Kufa at that time, Nu'man ibn Bashir, was not strong enough to squash this revolution. Yazeed sends Obaidullah into Kufa. Look at the conversation between Yazeed and Obaidullah.

He says, Obaidullah, you go to Kufa with whoever you have with you, I will send the army from Syria and squash this revolution that is about to start in Kufa. Obaidullah's response, Allahu Akbar, he says, 'Yazeed, keep your army with you. I am going to walk into Kufa by myself'. Not an entourage, not an army, not a security team, not even a weapon. I am going to gallop on my horse into this eighteen thousand so-called revolution, and I am going to turn them against the very man they wrote letters for. Save your army. I do not need your army.

Obaidullah ibn Ziyad enters the city of Kufa with a niqab, with a veil on his face, and the books tell us when the Kufis saw an individual coming on a horse they believed him to be Imam Husayn. They gathered, a thousand of them gathered, to welcome the Imam. Okay? Some say they even gave their hand ready to say, look, we are so ready to, even before you come, my hand is ready for bay'at for you. The man comes on a horse, unveils himself to be Obaidullah. They look at him and they turn around and they back away and they walk back to their homes.

Do you understand that? This was a man sent by Yazeed to squash the very revolution that you want to begin. If all of you took a shot at him, he would have been dead. A thousand of you, one man, not a weapon, no entourage, no army, no security, nothing. Him and his horse, walked right through you guys, you did nothing. Look, oh it is not Imam Husayn, okay, let us go home. Turned around, went home.

What does that tell you? There is a whole mentality back then that needs to be discussed beforehand. I do not have time. It is enough to know they were not calling Imam Husayn to be their wali and Imam. They were calling Imam Husayn to once again restore the greatness of the Kufans and Kufa.

You know that when Amir al mu'mineen picked up his government and made Kufa the capital of his Islamic empire, there are certain perks that come along with that. As I mentioned a few nights ago, Yazeed destroyed all that. They came to fill their pockets once again. That is why Imam Husayn says these people are the slaves of the dunya, the 'abeed of the dunya. That is all they are. And in that group were some of the more senior ones.

But let me also make this one point that I have made in a house discussion last weekend, because some people will have a problem with what I say right now. And will say that Oh Syed you are actually proving the point that Shi'as killed Imam Husayn in Karbala. The one thing that sometimes our non Shi'a individuals tell us, that you guys are crazy, you guys cry over the death of Imam Husayn, but you are the ones that killed him.

How do we answer that? Those of you who do lots of debate on social media, how do you answer that? Let us debate the most ignorant people in the world. I do not know why, sometimes you guys take on the most takfeer of the takfeeris. They will never understand your cause. There was not a single Shi'a amongst the qaatileen of Aba Abdillah al-Husayn on the day of Ashura, not one Shi'a was amongst the thirty thousand.

Fighting beside the Imam, fighting with the Imam, does not make anybody a Shi'a of that Imam. People had their different agendas. If you want to understand who a Shi'a is, you look at the history of Karbala. On the seventh or eighth of Muharram, when, Syeda Zaynab is seeing thousands and thousands of thousands come from Kufa, she approaches her brother and says, 'Is there nobody that you could ask for help? Is there not one person that will come and help us?'

Because every single time there is news of a tribe or a group coming towards Karbala, she would have a little bit of hope that maybe, maybe the people of Medina, of Mecca, of Kufa had a little bit of awareness, an awakening and now they are flooding towards Karbala to save their Imam.

When she sees that that is not possible anymore, she asked Imam Husayn, Is there no one that you can call? He says, 'I have one individual in Kufa that I can call'. He writes a letter to Habib. Who was Habib? Habib ibn Mudhaahir, during the time of the Holy Prophet, he is giving a khutba, a sermon. During the sermon, there are some kids playing in the back. After the sermon is done, he calls one of his companions, says, do me a favor, the son of Mudhaahir is in the back playing. Call him towards me. Habib, a very young Habib, comes to Rasool Allah. The Prophet picks him up, kisses him, hugs him, lets him go. The companions ask him Ya Rasool Allah, with all due respect, there are other kids playing there too.

He says, you did not see what I saw in Habib. He said my Husayn was also playing with them as well, wherever my Husayn went, the son of Mudhaahir would pick up from the footsteps of my Husayn the khaak, the dirt, and put it on his head.

When Imam Husayn wrote a letter to Habib saying, your Mawla is calling you, I need you now, I am in Karbala. Imam Husayn had 12 flags ready on the day of Ashura. He handed them out one by one to his companions. There was no answer yet from the from the letter. He held onto the 12th flag and there were some companions who did not have a flag. They would say, I do not have a flag. would you mind? I would be honored to carry one of the flags.

He would hold on to that flag and say, this is for my Habib. He is on his way right now. They say when Habib arrived in Karbala, there was for the first time a sense of rejoicing in the camp of Aba Abdillah. To the point where the sound of that enjoyment reached the ears of Syeda Zaynab. Syeda Zaynab asked Fidhdha, 'Fidhdha - can you find out what happened outside?'

She says, 'Our master Habib is here'. She says to Fidhdha, 'Fidhdha go and send Habib my salaams'. Fidha goes to Habib and says Habib, the daughter of Fatima sends her salaams to you.

Habib fell on the khak and the sand of Karbala, picked up the dirt on his head, and says, 'What has come over the Bani Hashim that this day has arrived where someone like Syeda Zaynab is sending salaams to a haqeer like Habib?' The one who gives a little bit of omeed and hope to the Ahlul Bayt and the Imams is called a Shi'a. The likes of Habib ibn Mudhahir are called the Shi'a. Do not fall through those traps where you guys kill Husayn and you guys mourn for Husayn. Let us define what a Shi'a first is and then go from there.

So the idea of the trap of the dunya. We have to be very, very careful in that trap. Like I said, I am not asking anybody here to not be successful. Be successful, do not attach yourself to that success. Do not sell your soul out for that success. Do not cut off ties with your family for that success. Do not change your principles for that success.

And very, very quickly - number two - is our relationship with our a'maal. How do we see our deeds? Imam Zainul Abideen, alayhi alsalaat wal salaam, [Allahumma salli 'ala Muhammad wa aale Muhammad wa ajjal farajhum] our fourth Imam in Du'a Makarim al Akhlaaq, du'a number 20 in the Sahifa. Twenty two different qualities of a muttaqi' (pious individual). One of them is that he does 'istiqlaal al kheyr' and 'istikthaar al shar'. His 'kheyr' that he does is qaleel. His 'shar' that he does is akthar, it is katheer inside of him. Meaning what? He minimizes the good that he does and exaggerates the mistakes that he makes. He accounts for the good deeds as nothing, I should be doing that, but he kills himself over the mistakes that he makes. Sometimes people like me have it switched. We do a little bit of good. We have to announce it the entire world. We do constant bad. We justify it.

How do we view our own actions. Do we compare our actions to others? If we do that, it is a trap. What is that trap? That trap is usually we compare our actions to people who we know are a little bit less religious than us. Usually we compare our actions to those who are less pious than us. Why? To pump up our own ego. Whereas hadith says no, if you want to compare, compare with somebody who is a little bit higher than you and say I want to be like that person. But that is not what we do sometimes, to justify our mistakes and more importantly, to make us feel like we are a true Shi'a, a true mu'min, we actually do this idea of presenting a false image of our own deeds, not to anybody else, to ourself.

And we count and list all the greatness that we do and we kind of say, yeah, well, sometimes I do make mistakes, but Allah is Al-Rahman and Al-Rahim, mashaAllah. I am not infallible. I am a fallible individual. Allah did not create me to be a ma'sum. Fine.

Let us be careful with that. If we do everything we can to hide our defects, we should do everything we can to hide our good deeds as well. It is a very important point in the rules of Akhlaaq, a very important point. That we go above and beyond to make sure that nobody understands what I do behind closed doors when I make a mistake, when I commit a sin, above and beyond. We beg people, please do not tell others what you saw. If we did that much scrutiny when it comes to our good acts that we do behind closed doors, where no one sees it but us and Allah, then we would be somewhere else right now. The pumping of our ego, the elevation of our deeds to a level that they do not deserve to be there, I'm sorry. These are all traps within us. Be careful.

We should never be to a point I'm sorry, where we are satisfied with the amount that we do, ever. I think I said this here or at Zainabiyya, there are people, individuals who come to me and tell me 'I know, Syed, the amount that I do, I will be in heaven. There is no way that God will punish me. It is not possible'. These are satanic whispers inside of you. Be careful. However much that we do, it is never enough. Always building towards a different level.

So two traps here tonight in my closing discussion to all of you. And that is, if we want to make sure that we present our self as the best possible individual to not only work towards the reform of the Ummah. Have your social activities, be socially and politically active, do not stop that, that is in its own right. But side by side with that, you also have to build your individual reform and individual piety as well. You rise up to crush the oppressor on the outside and you rise up to crush the oppressor on the inside as well.

It has to be a parallel movement. Otherwise, God forbid, and we have seen this, that sometimes those that we lead towards a path will end up being the closest companions of the Imam, and us who taught them will be on the other side facing the Imam, God forbid. That is a very scary thought. I taught you everything you knew. You took my teachings and applied it. And now you are a soldier of the Imam. I was left with simply giving you lip service. I never let it actually resonate inside of my deeds. And now the student is the Imam's soldier and the teacher is the Imam's enemy. How many times have you seen this? Many, many times.

To protect yourself from that two points. And then it is du'a. Number one, is the trap of the dunya. You guys are young, vibrant, passionate, intelligent, smart, educational, pious individuals. And people like you, Satan creates plans. And creates movements against. He does not like people like you and will throw everything at you to pull you off the path. And the one thing that is the most attractive to the youth nowadays is the dunya. Identify your dunya and try to avoid it.

And number two is examine that relationship between you and your a'maal, your deeds. How do you see your own deeds? We are quick to judge the deeds of others. How quick are we to judge our own deeds? We are quick to scrutinize the deeds of others. Do we scrutinize our own deeds to that extent as well? If not, it is hypocritical and that is going to be our downfall.

And these days of Arba'een, the return back of the Ahlul Bayt towards Karbala. The fact is that it is the announcement of the victory of Imam Husayn. The day of Arba'een is a victory of Imam Husayn. Twenty one million are right now in Karbala. Every Husayniya, every Masjid, every corner of the globe right now is chanting Labbayka ya Husayn. Everywhere you go, all of our social media, every news report. The fact that the Western media refuses to cover that, that is their issue. They cannot deny the fact that everyone is moving towards this idea. Imam al-Sadiq says, may Allah have mercy on the cheeks that rub themselves against the dhareeh of Aba Abdillah al Husayn. Twenty one million are moving towards Jannah for the single opportunity of rubbing one cheek on the dhareeh of Imam Husayn.

This love, this passion, this movement is our victory, but it is also our motivation to destroy the Yazeed of our time. What Imam Husayn planted on the Day of Ashura, our Imam will complete with his dhuhoor. In the meantime, we have to keep going, keep unmasking, exposing the Yazeed of our time. In the process, build that Husayni energy inside of us. Only then do we have the right to say, 'Wa 'ajil farajahum, inshaAllah'.

We ask you, Allah, subhana wa ta'ala, to accept this qaleel ibadah inshaAllah. We ask you, Allah subhana wa ta'ala, there is so much tyranny, there is so much injustice all over the world. We have one Husayn who is in ghayba right now. We ask you, Allah to hasten that reappearance of our Husayn. And just like Imam Husayn was for his as'haab the Imam, lets him be for his as'hab, meaning us, also our Imam. InshaAllah. Wasalam alaykum wa rahmatullahi barakatuh.