[By Hazrat Maulana Ahmad Sadeq Desai]
Nowadays Muslim parents/ grandparents of supposedly Deeni families give a food invitation to people, often in large numbers, when their children/grandchildren graduate as an alim/hafidh.
The justification tendered is that Umar Radhiyallahu Anhu did something similar. Is this analogy correct? If not, would you be able to clarify two points?
First, why is the analogy invalid and second, despite the invalidity of such an analogy, what is the issue with such invitations?
Hifz/Aalim graduation functions, jalsahs and merrymaking parties are not permissible. These are nafsaani accretions which have no origin and no basis in the Sunnah and the Khairul Quroon era. While some seniors had introduced such jalsahs, they have long ago outlived their utility. In fact, these baseless functions have gone haywire. A number of evils are attendant to these parties and jalsahs.
Insincerity, riya (show/ ostentation), takabbur (pride) and israaf (massive waste) are the salient features of these parties. The large amounts of money squandered to feed fat, wealthy people and people who are not in need of food can be better utilized to feed suffering Muslims who battle to make ends meet and who struggle to provide food for their families.
These functions are hollow with an external appearance of ‘deen’, while in reality it is to gratify the nafsaani dictates of parents and the Madrasah management. The Deen is no longer imparted for the Sake of Allah Ta’ala and for attainment of the objectives of the Aakhirat. We are living in such times about which the Hadith says:
“Knowledge will be acquired for purposes other than the Deen, and the dunya will be pursued with the a’maal of the Aakhirat.”
This is the condition of the Madaaris and especially of the umrah-holidaymakers. The Deen is dangled to deceive. In fact they perpetrate self-deception to soothe their conscience by convincing themselves that they are engaging in Deeni pursuits with their jalsahs and Umrah-holidays.
When parents of the ‘graduating’ students organize the functions, then generally Hijaab is not observed. The outer facade of hijaab is another act of self-deception. Men and women congregate and pretend to be observing hijaab on the basis of there being ‘separate’ eating facilities. But in all other respects Purdah is not observed.
When the Fuqaha have prohibited even walimahs for females despite the walimah being Masnoon, then how can it ever be permissible for females to attend these bid’ah, wasteful, nafsaani merrymaking parties organized falsely in the name of the Deen?
The justification on the basis of the amal of Hadhrat Umar (Radhiyallahu anhu) is putrid and utterly fallacious. There is absolutely no justification in Hadhrat Umar’s amal for the haraam, bid’ah, wasteful, nafsaani parties of this age. There is no similarity between Hadhrat Umar’s amal and the khuraafaat (nonsense and stupidities) of which these merrymaking parties constitute. Only morons proffer Hadhrat Umar’s amal as an analogy for their parties and jalsahs.
There is absolutely not the remotest resemblance between the two widely different acts. What was Hadhrat Umar’s amal? After he had made Hifz of Surah Baqarah, not of the Qur’aan Majeed, he made Sadaqah of a camel. What resemblance is there between the merrymaking functions and the Sadaqah of a camel? If these pretenders are so keen to follow this example of Hadhrat Umar (Radhiyallahu anhu), then they should make Sadaqah of a camel or of a bull or of some sheep or of money, etc. to the poor. Why organize a party to feed affluent obese people who have no value for the luxury foods?
Hadhrat Umar (Radhiyallahu anhu) did not organize a function. There was no merrymaking. Men and women did not come for a feast. Furthermore, his amal was when he completed Surah Baqarah. He did not repeat his amal after he completed Hifz. No graduating ceremony was organized for him. Thus there is no basis for ‘graduation ceremonies’ when completing Hifz or the Molwi course.
His amal was not a general Sunnah for practical adoption by all and sundry. Not a single Sahaabi emulated Hadhrat Umar (radhiyallahu anhu) in his act of Sadaqah when they had completed hifz of Surah Baqarah or of the whole Qur’aan Majeed. There were numerous Huffaaz among the Sahaabah and during the Khairul Quroon era. But no one forged a jalsah on the basis of Hadhrat Umar’s amal. But in this belated era in close proximity to Qiyaamah, shaitaan has adorned merrymaking parties with an outer ‘deeni’ veneer to entrap people into his snare.
The factor of Iltizaam (compulsion) by itself renders these jalsahs impermissible. The merrymaking ‘graduating’ parties in emulation of the practices of kuffaar educational institutions, are regarded as compulsory. It is almost unthinkable for a Madrasah to refrain from organizing a graduating jalsah. The gatherings organized by families to ‘honour’ and advertise their children are recent developments. Only ujub, riya and takabbur are the motivation for these functions of israaf.
The Qur’aan Majeed was the subject of Hifz from the time of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam). Ulama existed from the age of the Sahaabah. But never did they indulge in these frivolities in which Muslims today wallow whilst the Ummah at large is suffering in grinding poverty and jahaalat. Those who lack genuine feeling and concern for the suffering Ummah of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) are so insensitive as to indulge in merrymaking, frivolity and massive waste. This is a deplorable satanic feature in all our educational and deeni institutions. Even the so-called khaanqahs which are supposed to impart lessons of austerity, simplicity and humility are entangled in this satanic mess of israaf and nafsaaniyat.
The consumption of carrion and haraam processed foods has blighted the intelligence and stunted, in fact, obliterated roohaaniyat from the hearts of Muslims. That is why they are totally oblivious of the Hadith:
“The Muslimoon are like a single man. If the eye pains, the entire body is distressed. If the head pains, the entire body is distressed.”
The hearts have become harder than rock. That is why Muslims are so impervious regarding the suffering of the Ummah whilst they are in the forefront of shaitaani waste on themselves. They come within the purview of the Qur’aanic Aayat:
“Then your hearts became hard as stones or even harder, for verily from even rocks gush forth rivers, and even rocks split and water flows therefrom. And, verily, some stones roll (from heights) out of fear for Allah. Allah is not unaware of what you are doing.”
For excerpts from a letter of Hazrat Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi (rahmatullahi alayh), in which he elaborates on the reasons why the Shariah prohibits Jalsahs such as the Khatme Bukhari Jalsahs see the following link: