By Saqib Akbar
I was also blessed as was Ghulam Hurr to make a pilgrimage to the Holy Land of Makkah, where from he sent me a message. He wrote that I am in the House of God praying for us. He also asked us to pray. May Allah accept his prayers and his presence there. His message once again revived the glory and beauty of the Khana-e-Kaabah in my mind and soul. It is such a fountain of blessing that a sip of its water conferring immortality sets in motion a storm of thirst. The sight of the Kaabah makes one restless forever. The charm and attraction of it also mesmerize those who are far from it. It serves as such a centre point for humans that they do not feel weary while making “Tawaf” (the prescribed seven circuits of Kaabah). Its attraction is such that a person cannot think of going round anything else after performing the “Tawaf” for the first time.

After reaching there, Ghulam Hurr remembered us in his prayers because he is the follower of that Prophet (pbuh) who at the time of ascensions to the heavens did not forget to pray for the mankind. Allama Iqbal has written about a “Sufi” (mystic personality) who after seeking nearness to God had not wished to come back. Responding to the “Sufi’s” wish it was said: The difference between the “Sufi” and the prophet is that the prophet after receiving favours and blessings comes back to share these blessings with the mankind. After quenching the thirst of his soul, the prophet thinks of the restless and crying people. He plans to create a point of connection so that others can also benefit from the spring of blessing. He becomes a link between the God and the mankind. He does not eternally remain a spectator of glory and splendor but thinks of those who are stuck in wilderness. He resolves to show the right path to these misguided people. He comes back to guide the mankind towards the ultimate truth. That is why he says: “Namaz” (prayer) is the spiritual ascension of “Momin” (believer). He connects people with God. He connects people with one another so that all benefit from the Eternal Light.

Many people forget the rest while going to Makkah to perform the Hajj. Most of them only keep in mind their children, wives, friends and those who have asked for “Dua” (benediction, supplication, prayer). They remember only these people in their prayers and their world revolves round them only. Their world and for whom they pray is limited.

Their “Dua” is restricted to temporal things only e.g. for someone to be successful in a test, or examination, for somebody’s employment, for someone’s marriage, for the recuperating of somebody and some other prayers like these and that’s it. Some people also include the safety and security of their country in their supplications and as such their sphere of “Dua” widens a bit. But, very few people bear it in mind that they have come to the House of that God who is the Lord of the worlds. Then why only pray for selective people and worldly things. One must pray for all the oppressed and destitute people. One must include all those in his “Dua” who have been denied peace and tranquility, whose resources have been looted and who have been robbed. Why only pray for the subjugated people only. One must also pray for the annihilation and destruction of the oppressors and tyrants.

The teachings of the Prophet Ibrahim (pbuh) should reflect from the character of devotees on reaching the House of God. It is the House built by Prophet Ibrahim and Prophet Ismail. They were true servants of the God. Prophet Ibrahim (pbuh) had refused to bow to anyone except Allah. He took a firm stand against Namrood who was the “Taghut” (devil) of the time. He refused to obey him. He raised the flag of “Tawheed” (monotheism) before him. He put up a bold front in face of the society which was worshipping idols on the whole. He opted to jump in the fire rather than accepting to bow before any idol or “Taghut”. On arrival at Khana-e-Kaabah, one should make a firm resolve to rise up against tyrants of the time. The pilgrimage to Makkah should act as a spur to work for freeing mankind from the slavery of idols.

We should also learn from the Prophet Ibrahim (pbuh) how to make our supplications all-inclusive. On completion of the construction of the Khana-e-Kaabah, Ibrahim (pbuh) after praying for acceptance of this service included all in his supplications. He started to supplicate to the All Mighty:

O Lord: Make me submissive unto You and of our offspring a nation submissive unto You and make them raise the flag of monotheism.

O our Lord! Come to our rescue and accept our prayers.

O Lord! Forgive me on the day of reckoning. Forgive my parents and all the believers.

The supplications of the Prophet Ibrahim (pbuh) come to mind and the knots get untied when one visits Khana-e-Kaabah.

I fail to understand why the Muslims at the present time while going to perform Hajj not lament on the unfortunate state of the Ummah and not pray for its salvation from this backwardness and suffering. How can an awakened Muslim scholar not pray to God for cure and betterment of the severely wounded and torn apart body of the Muslim Ummah. How is it possible that the followers of Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh) and Hazrat Ibrahim (pbuh) will not get restless and impatient in Khana-e-Kaabah on the condition of those Muslims who are suffering at the hands of savage imperial beasts?

A follower of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) will also pray for redemption of all the oppressed people. He will seek guidance, help and courage from God in order to work for this sacred cause.

The name of Ghulam Hurr took me back to Hurr of Karbala. He proved that he was a “Hurr” (free man, noble, freeborn) in reality. He left the army of Yazid. He left his position and the army he was commanding and joined Imam Hussain. He knew with absolute certainty that he was going to die by making this choice. But he gave his life to achieve the real freedom because he was enthralled and mesmerized by the pure and virtuous personality of Imam Hussain who was the son of Moulood-e-Kaabah (one of the titles of Hazrat Ali as it is believed that he was born inside Kaabah).

دائرہ جذب میں پہنچا تو شیداہوگیا
دیکھ لیجیے حر کو، کیسے غیر اپنا ہوگیا

(He fell in love after entering into the circle of attraction. Look at Hurr, how a stranger became a partner.)

A human becomes a free man by entering into the circle of attraction of Khana-e- Kaabah and those are very unfortunate people who do not become free even after performing circumambulations of the House of God.

By Saqib Akbar

Horrific news of another mass shooting in the United States emerged on June 29, 2018, according to which an armed man started firing at a local newspaper office in the state of Maryland resulting in the killing of five people besides injuring many. The newspaper office was directly targeted in this incident. The shooter killed the people by opening fire in the newsroom.

Such shocking incidents of killing are taking place every now and then in America and some among these gruesome happenings are reported in the newspapers published here in Pakistan. Nowadays, TV channels and newspapers in Pakistan don’t bother to pay attention to anything except the local and at the most national news, rather, they are mostly engaged in running breaking news stories typically filled with new items in which politicans can be seen exchanging teasing remarks with each other. In such a scenario, who can here have the information of what is happening across the world and how many people are killed at a particular place and who killed them.

I say this with sadness and regret that America is the place where most number of citizens get killed at the hands of fellow citizens. People belonging to all fields and all ages are being targeted and those who kill also include people from all walks of life. Perhaps it is right to say that across the globe it is the US where most of the killings and terrorist incidents are taking place. However, it is also a fact that the US is the most weaponized society in the world and that these arms have been legally acquired.

The movement aimed at making stricter laws to obtain firearms and to get back weapons already issued to people in America has started several times, and licenses should only be issued in this connection where it is absolutely necessary. A movement began towards this end particularly during the presidency of Barack Obama and the president then himself pointed towards framing new laws regarding the weapons acquired by the citizens, but powerful arms selling lobbies came in the way and didn’t allow any new legislation to take place in this regard. Eventually, the US President backed off from it. These are the same arms producing lobbies who sell different kinds of weapons to the world and make nations fight each other. Wherever there is a conflict between two countries or two nations, it becomes a source for American arms sellers to earn much money. Rather, they lend support to their political leaders on the basis that they create such conditions that nations purchase more and more weapons from these arms sellers. Therefore, the present US President Donald Trump praised the quality of American weapons on the occasion of the meeting of Islamic countries held in Riyadh and told different Arab leaders to purchase ‘beautiful’ military equipment from Washington.

Only a ruthless investor or a representative of the ruthless investors can talk like this. Who does not know that a weapon is used to kill humans? America's modern and deadly arsenal is spreading destruction in the world and the same armaments are being used to kill people in the US. The easiest of the murders is to kill youth, children and students. Thus school going children are mostly getting killed in the US. According to a BBC report, 291 incidents of murder and terrorism occurred in and around schools from 2013 to 2018. Recently, a Pakistani young girl student was killed in a similar shooting incident at a Texas high school, whose dead body was later brought to Karachi for final rites.

The current population of the United States is more than 32670000. A static shows a total of 4436096 firearms were registered in the US as of April 2017. It can’t be said how much total arms people possess in America because in a country where more than 15 separatist movements exist and it is difficult to say at which level a movement has reached in a particular state and how much weapons freedom fighters have. It is so because arms seller investors are concerned about their wealth. Whether American federation remains or not, they perhaps have not much to do with it.

A manifestation of the difficulties facing general masses in America was witnessed in Occupy Wall Street protest movement that began in 2011, which continued for several months. People in hundreds of cities around the world expressed their support to this protest movement. Demonstrations were held in more than 800 cities on the same day throughout the world to express solidarity with the activists of the Occupy Wall Street movement. During that period, this protest movement was regarded as identical to the Arab Spring and it was given the name of American Spring. The Americans themselves wrote on some banners: ‘Come Americans and let’s struggle for American Spring’. Those Americans who participated in these protests said that they were not free, rather, 99% of American people were enslaved by 1% rich people and now the time has come that an ordinary American take away this power from the rich.

The whole world was surprised by these protests, which showed how much American people have become fed up with the capitalist system governing them. As other freedom loving people are suppressed by colonial powers through their agents or they change the of their movements, the Occupy Wall Street movement also met with the same fate. But the effects of this movement are felt in the layers of the American society. One could imagine by assessing this movement that how much the American people understand the realities and whenever they get the opportunity, they will make the right decision to free themselves from the capitalist system. One of the basic demands of the participants of these protests was that the US forces stationed at different places around the globe be called back and the protesters were of the opinion that the American public were forced to pay trillion of dollars spent in the wars imposed on Afghanistan and Iraq. They demanded that these forces be immediately brought back and there only duty should be to protect the US borders. They also said that the government was taking heavy loans in order to save financial institutions and the burden of paying these loans was being laid on the public. Unemployment was increasing day by day and the facilities provided to general masses were being withdrawn. The most popular slogan of the protesters was to snatch power from the 1% and give it to the 90% masses.

The perception of people in some American states is that there standards of living could improve if they were able to seek separation from the federation. Their resources are not being used properly by the federation due to which people living in many US states are suffering from a sense of deprivation. These facts come to the fore when a natural disaster hits one of the deprived states. The states where active separatist movements exist include Louisiana, Texas, Montana, Indiana, Mississippi, Kentucky, North Carolina, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, New Jersey, Colorado, Oregon and New York.

The American masses live in a state of fear throughout the world because people of most of the countries around the world hate the United States. The most popular slogan in several countries of the world is "Death to America". Its effect is being felt by innocent Americans who travel across the globe because people feel intense dislike for them. This is the result of the policies pursued by the cruel capitalist rulers. The situation at present is that the US President Donald Trump speaks whatever he wants against whosoever. Nowadays the European Union is also on the receiving end of Trump’s ire, while the Western Europe has traditionally remained allied to America. Recently, the US president also used harsh language against the Canadian prime minister. China too is under the attack of Donald Trump. It has also surfaced that the US president played main role in creating dissensions within the Gulf Cooperation Council. The UN General Assembly has resoundingly passed a draft resolution rejecting US recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. This resolution is a kind of global referendum against the American policies. In its extraordinary summit held in Istanbul in May 2018, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) strongly rejected and condemned the US action to move its embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. This shows that American rulers are the most detested people in the world and internally American people are weary of their rulers.

Nevertheless, it is unfortunate that generally no one speaks for the deliverance of oppressed Americans from the tyranny of their cruel capitalist rulers when voices are raised against injustices happening anywhere in the world. The need is that the freedom lovers and justice seekers across the globe come to the defence of the oppressed people of America. This backing should come from everywhere. Europeans, Asians, Africans and people of other regions should express their support for the Americans just like they speak up for the martyrs of Chicago on May 1 every year.

This combined massive protest demonstration on the occasion of Al-Quds Day organized by the parties affiliated with the Milli Yekjehti Council (MYC) and other organizations was held to show solidarity with the oppressed Palestinians. This gathering condemns in strong terms the state terrorism unleashed by Israel against the people of Palestine, which has resulted in the deaths of thousands of innocent people besides forcing lacs of others out of their homeland and damaging properties worth millions. Israel is doing all this under the patronage of the US. This gathering particularly expresses its strong displeasure and resentment over the massacre of Palestinians that took place on this year’s Nakba (Catastrophe Day) protests and that this wanton slaughtering has not stopped till this day. This protest which represents the unanimous voice of the people of Pakistan demands:

• The Zionist entity forthwith stops spilling blood of Palestinians and the US halts its backing of this aggressor. The land of Palestine solely belongs to Palestinians and enforcing the two-state solution is a kind of bullying on the part of world. Those Jews who have been moved from different places and settled in Palestine should leave this territory and go to their own countries and let Palestinians settle freely in their own land.

• The one-state solution being talked about by the Trump administration is the worst example of state terrorism and bullying tactics and that the Muslim world will never accept such kind of solution. The Ummah will not remain silent in case steps are taken towards this end. This kind of solution will push the region towards an unending war.

• The US should wind up its embassy from Baitul Muqaddas and provide proof of it being an independent state by immediately stopping supporting Israel that is contrary to international laws and moral principles. Similarly, those Muslim states having diplomatic ties with Israel and also having accepted the Zionist state should review their decision and close Israeli embassies in their respective countries.

• The United Nations and those global bodies responsible for maintaining peace should play their role to provide a practical solution to the seven decade old Palestine issue. Similarly, OIC, Arab League and other Islamic blocs collectively and Muslim states at individual levels should act against the US move of repositioning its embassy and use their influence on America so that this unilateral decision taken by the US against international laws could be overturned.

• The government of Pakistan should formulate an effective and robust policy with regard to the issue of Palestine keeping in mind the sayings of Qaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah in this respect. It should also take steps to inform the world about the importance and sensitivities of the issues of Palestine and Kashmir.

• The ongoing problems that different Muslim states are confronting, which have been devised to create discord within the Ummah and to put off the attention from the real issues like Palestine and Kashmir, should be resolved by the leaders of Muslim states with mutual consultations and by talking with each other. The Pakistani government should play its key role in this regard.

• This meeting also expects from Muslim intellectuals, writers and the public in general to understand the intrigues of the impearlistic forces and not become part their plan besides abstaining from every such shameful act which causes disintegration of the Ummah. They should also take steps to create awareness about the Palestine and Kashmir issues.

• This grand gathering and the parties affiliated with MYC Pakistan pledge to not only remain present in the practical field according to their abilities and positions to foil enemies’ conspiracies but also will play their part to apprise people of these plots and to bring Muslims together as per the teachings of the Quran.

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