Sunday, January 27, 2008

Ijtema 2008: Flooded with rain, Flooded with Blessings

The days of Ijtema are the most eagerly awaited days of the year to me. Since I came to Uttara I didn't miss attending this grand event. It's a huge opportunity to listen to the elders of Tabligh who come here from all the corners of the globe, inspiring us to work on Allah's path, spread the words of Quran and Sunnah. This year I knew I wouldn't be able to attend all three days, as the classes and exams were too heavily scheduled as we are heading towards the end of the semester. But man desires and Allah decides. Due to continuous rain and chilling winter cold, the Ijtema was cut short into just one day. I saw a glimpse of the misery of the people at Ijtema on Thursday. I went there at Asr and the scenario was totally miserable. It was raining from above, the water dripping down through the canopies. The clay roads were all muddy, making it a huge task to move around. People were finding no place even to put their luggage. At several spots I saw men removing mud using bottles and pots from the ground where they are supposed to stay for three days. I couldn't stay for much longer and headed back home. As I was returning, I could here our very own Maulana Zubair speaking about patience through the hurdles in life. He referred to the Sahabis (Ra), saying that they never prayed for their troubles to be gone, instead they prayed that they would face tougher challenges, so that they can prove themselves in the test of Imaan.
At Friday, the situation was getting even worse. So after the Maghrib prayers, the seniors of Tabligh and two people from each Zilla was called on an emergency meeting, from which the decision came to halt the proceedings of this year's Ijtema after the Isha prayer. The eagerly anticipated so called 'Akheri Munajat' was held at about 8:00 pm.
Apparantly it seems as though the Ijtema has been foiled, that it has failed its purpose. But it might not be so. Maybe this years Ijtema would be far more successful in achieving its goals than recent years. Allah tests the steadfastness of His subjects through all states and conditions, to see how strong they stand on the path of Allah, despite the state they are in. India's Maulana Saad said at the bayaan after Maghrib, that this seemingly failed congregation would bring many times more blessings from Allah than any other, and the far reaching positive effect of this Ijtema would be seen very shortly Inshallah. I guess what he meant is that through this turn of events, people will find new inspiration, encouragement and spirit to work for the sake of Deen Islam.
One immediate example of what Maulana Saad said was observed in the representation of the Ijtema by the media. Most of the times, when the electronic media covers this event, they hugely fail to bring out the true purpose of Ijtema, which is to send out Jamaats of Tabligh throughout the country and the world, to call people towards Allah. This year I was surprised to see a clear difference. I saw the report made by private broadcasters Channel-I on their news after the day Ijtema was terminated. I was really delighted to note that the true goal of Ijtema was indeed brought out clearly enough. In the papers as well, I saw similar changes. Pamphlets distributed by the government sponsored by Grameen Phone, which contained the map of the Ijtema ground, also mentioned the necessity of the work of Tabligh. These things are quite different from the previous years.
So in the same tone as all the Muslims of the country, I pray to Allah that this Ijtema which is apparently flooded by the rain, is in fact flooded by the Blessings of The Almighty.