The Prophet Muhammad (SAW) said, “The best amongst you are those who benefit mankind”.
How does one benefit others?
Beneficial knowledge is the strong, unwavering flame that transforms an ordinary vessel into a source of light and warmth that illuminates the path ahead for not only the holder of the lamp, but for all of those surrounding it. When Allah (SWT) allows His knowledge to settle in, a pure spring breaks out from the hardened shells around our hearts, creating a flowing river that seeps into the lives of not only those around us, but of the environment and world itself. We are no longer individuals working for personal gain, rather, we are striving to serve the Creator and give back to the earth and be guardians of that which He has blessed us with.
And we are indeed guardians.
Our role as guardians of the earth
The few days I’ve spent with fellow Zahraa students and sisters cleaning up the shores at Muizenberg beach, has made it evident that the environment needs its guardians more than ever, and that we are not excelling in our duties. May Allah SWT help us to become more efficient and effective when dealing with the problem of pollution.
Plastic bags, bottle tops, cigarette buds, glass bottles, tin cans, old (and dirty) nappies and food cartons are only some of all the things that now make up part of the shore. Dumped in the sand or hidden in between bushes, they are blown around by the wind, finally delivered into the water where they may be mistaken as food by unsuspecting sea creatures. What begins with a careless dropping of your plastic bag, can result in the death of an innocent animal.
It saddened me greatly to see how such a beautiful gift that Allah has given us to enjoy, is being taken for granted and utterly vandalised by the careless majority. We live life unconsciously, forgetting the consequences of our tardy actions and expecting the good things in life to stay the same – even as we continue to taint them with our filth.
Alhamdulillah, Zahraa Institute has teamed up with an excellent existing cleanup crew, and we’ve been granted an opportunity to make a difference. Taking time out on a Saturday morning to clean up might seem incredibly uninviting at first, but I assure you that this initiative is really rewarding, both physically and spiritually.
I encourage everyone to spend some time in the fresh morning breeze doing something which will not only rejuvenate your senses, awaken your consciousness and keep the environment clean and safe (saving the lives of animals is no small thing), but also weigh heavily on our scale of good deeds, insha’Allah.
May Allah (SWT) make us of those who strive to help and share our light with others, always finding opportunities to contribute to the world in a beautiful way, and BEING the change. Ameen.