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Random thoughts

September 3, 2019

Today’s Harut and Marut

Opinion

September 3, 2019

The Kashmir crisis is at its peak. Those who cannot even use an ordinary catapult are bragging that they will teach India a lesson. The Kashmir issue has made ordinary people forget about inflation, unemployment etc.

Rulers don’t like to be criticized and have their failures and blunders pointed out; so let me talk instead of the angels Harut and Marut who were disgraced and sent to earth in the guise of humans for their haughtiness and disobedience. They were trained to do magic and used this knowledge to influence people. Thus they created differences between couples, leading to the break-up of marriages.

In Surah Baqarah, Ayat 102, the Almighty explained the story of the two angels in these words: “And (the misguided people) then followed what the evil ones falsely attributed to the Kingdom of Solomon, even though Solomon had never disbelieved; it is the evil ones who disbelieved, teaching people magic. And they followed what had been revealed to the two angels in Babylon – Harut and Marut – although these two (angels) never taught it to anyone without first declaring: ‘We are merely a means of testing people; so do not engage in unbelief.’ And yet they learnt from them what might cause division between a man and his wife.

“They could not cause harm to anyone except by the leave of Allah, and still they learned what harmed rather than profited them, knowing well that he who bought it would have no share in the World to Come. Evil indeed is what they sold themselves for. Had they but known!”

Maulana Jalaluddin Rumi (RA) described this episode in this way: “How Harut and Marut relied on their immaculateness and desired to mix with the people of this world, and fell into temptation. As (for example), because of their arrogance, the celebrated Harut and Marut were smitten by the poisoned arrow (of Divine wrath). They had confidence in their holiness….. do not thou, O heart, brag vainly of thy strength. ….. What is form in the presence of (or in comparison to) reality? Very feeble! ‘Tis the reality of the sky that keeps it upside down (like an inverted cup). Judge by the analogy of the celestial wheel: from whom does its motion proceed? From directive Reason.

“The motion of this shield-like body is (derived) from the veiled spirit, O son. The ebb and flow and incoming and outgoing breath, from whom does it proceed but from the spirit that is filled with desire? Even so, our God has made this (Sarsar) wind like a (raging) dragon against ‘Ad. Again, He had also made that wind (to be) peace and regardfulness and safety for true believers. ‘The Reality is Allah,’ said the Shaykh of the (Mohammedan) Religion, (who is) the sea of the spiritual realities of the Lord of created beings. Now the sins and wickedness of the people of the world was becoming clearly visible to them both from the latticed window (of heaven). They began to gnaw their hands in wrath but had no eyes for their own faults.

“When a self-conceited person sees any one commit a sin, there appears in him a fire (derived) from hell. He calls that (hellish) pride, defence of the religion; he regards not the soul of arrogance in himself. Defence of the religion has a different character, for from that (religious) fire a (whole) world is green (verdant and flourishing). God said to them: ‘If you are enlightened, look not carelessly (contemptuously) upon the doers of black deeds who have been made forgetful (of God). The preservation (from sin) which you have in your bodies is from the refexion of My preservation and care (of you). Beware! Regard that as coming from Me, not from yourselves, lest the accursed devil prevail against you.’”

The reason for my reproducing these tales of Harut and Marut to demonstrate how the Harut and Marut of these present times are no different. They indulge in all kinds of vices, teach other people how to do fraud, indulge in corruption, cheat the innocent with sweet promises, but give them nothing but sour lemons; and yet they beat their chests in arrogance and claims of false achievements.

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