Tragedy: Lessons from Sayidna Musa & Al Khidr

So I bought my son these “Stories from the Qur’an for Kids” books.  They are older than his age, but at the very least, I figured it would raise some awareness and questions and I try to simplify the stories when I find that the language is getting a little more complex than he can understand (or sit through :).  The other night we read the story of Sayidna Musa (Moses) and Al Khidr, “the Green One,” a servant of God, who possesses mystic knowledge and plays the part of Musa’s spiritual guide.  It’s a beautiful and thought-provoking story which I’d be glad to rehash for anyone who doesn’t know it, but it’s a bit long, so, for now, I’ll just stick to the lesson from the story that proved to be a powerful reminder to me, and I’ll take it right out of this seemingly simple children’s book. 

“All this shows that the highest Divine wisdom sometimes appears to bring calamity.  Man’s limited knowledge and lack of foresight cause him to grieve over seeming tragedies.  But the true believer never flinches at such times, for he knows that the loving hand of Allah unceasingly directs humanity toward the goal of the greatest good.  That is the lesson of the story of Al-Khidr.”

It’s not that I haven’t heard similar words before, it’s that I’d forgotten what they truly meant, and this reminder came at just the right time for me personally.  How often I’ve cried and grieved at hardships I’ve encountered or tragedies of my own, or of those I’ve loved.  How often I’ve felt helpless and hopeless, rather than realizing  this hardship may just be a necessary stop on the path to something better, something greater – or that this tragedy may in fact be protecting me from taking a path far more destructive and painful to me and those that I love.  And how often I’ve let these hardships cloud my vision and my heart from enjoying and embracing my blessings.  How they take you away from true contentment and thankfulness.  How they make you look towards those who may (seem to) have more, rather than those who are less fortunate.

I also think of this in light of Rehab’s recent passing (Allah yir7amha).  I know everyone has read and heard so much about the kind of person she was, but I ask you to have patience as I mention it one more time.  Her passing may seem like a tragedy, and in some ways, it is for those of us left behind who do not have her inspiration and guidance to help move us forward towards bettering ourselves and our communities.  But I realize now Allah’s (swt) wisdom in taking such a beautiful person, who had an impact on so many – because of how intensely it would resonate with those left behind.  Allah gave us a gift in awakening our hearts and our spirits, using a tragedy such as this, to offer us an opportunity to start anew and refresh our neyyat and our resolve – to be better people, better humans, better Muslims.   From a tragedy, came something beautiful, and it’s something we should be thankful to Allah for, and make du3aa on Rehab’s behalf for, because so few other people could have inspired such a response.  What a gift, subhan Allah…

May Allah (swt) keep this feeling alive in us, and keep us steadfast in our resolve.


2 thoughts on “Tragedy: Lessons from Sayidna Musa & Al Khidr

  1. I could not have said the last paragraph about Rehab (Allahee yerhahma) better myself Loola…you took the words out of my mouth. Subhanallah it really was such a drive to be a better person and better Muslim. I barely knew her (unfortunately) but I am beyond inspired by all that I Have heard and read about her mashallah.

  2. E it reminded me a lot of when Basim Refai passed away, Allah Yir7amu. I guess the million dollar question is…how we we stay on course. How do we keep our priorities straight and our hearts in tune with what is important… I know that’s the test…the ongoing struggle but I cringe when I think that a day will come where things are TOO back to normal and I’m too distracted by my surroundings to concentrate on what’s truly important.


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