Dear Friends,

 

Since we are here to explore the common grounding of SALT in the various faiths and philosophies, I would like to share a couple of verses from the Holy Quran that emphasizes the 'L' and 'T' of SALT. The specific Chapter is 103 consisting of three lines, long, and quoted here with comments from Yusuf Ali.

 

103: 1. By (the Token of) Time (through the Ages),
An appeal is made to Time as one of the creations of Allah, of which everyone knows something but of which no one can fully explain the exact significance. Time searches out and destroys everything material. No one in secular literature has expressed the tyranny of "never-resting Time" better than Shakespeare in his Sonnets. For example, see Sonnets 5 ("never-resting Time"), 12 ("Nothing 'gainst Time's scythe can make defense"), and 64 ("When I have seen by Time's fell hand defaced, the rich proud cost of outworn buried age"). If we merely run a race against Time, we shall lose. It is the spiritual part of us that conquers Time. See verse 3 below.


103: 2. Verily Man is in loss,
If life be considered under the metaphor of a business bargain, man, by merely attending to his material gains, will lose. When he makes up his day's account in the afternoon, it will show a loss. It will only show profit if he has Faith, leads a good life, and contributes to social welfare by directing and encouraging other people on the Path of Truth and Constancy.

 

103: 3. Except such as have Faith, and do righteous deeds, and (join together) in the mutual teaching of Truth, and of Patience and Constancy.
Faith is his armour, which wards off the wounds of the material world; and his righteous life is his positive contribution to spiritual ascent.
If he lived only for himself, he would not fulfill his whole duty. Whatever good he has, especially in moral and spiritual life, he must spread among his brethren, so that they may see the Truth and stand by it in patient hope and unshaken constancy amidst all the storm and stress of outer life. For he and they will then have attained Peace within.

 

The idea is so simple, and straight to apply in both the material and spiritual dimensions of our lives. Whatever little we know that is of benefit to a Community, we join together and contribute to the common pool of our knowledge and work. Is this not learning and linking or the 'L' of SALT? Subsequently, whatever success stories we know or whatever we learn from one community, mankind will be at a loss if we do not transfer 'T' it to another human being, community or people. In this we are exhorted to link 'L' and spread by the mutual teaching of what works, despite all the distractions that may pose hurdles in our pursuit of SALT. Finally we are advised to patiently persevere with constancy on this mission of transferring the common pool of knowledge between the myriad communities of the world.

 

Hoping to post similar thoughts from the other religions, as and when I come across. Meanwhile, looking forward to your thoughts, and comments, as well as, anything similar that you might have found,

 

Rafique

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Replies to This Discussion

Dear Friends,

Just like charity begins at home, so does the practice of SALT. Therefore, appreciating your wife who is the heart of your home is the first step. Detailed are about sixty steps as taken from the life of the Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him: PBUH). His advice for those wanting to appreciate their wives were:

1.Make her feel secure and tranquil; (sakina- tranquillity) Quit being agressive
2. When you go home say 'Assalmualikum.' It kicks the devil (shaitaan) out of your home!
3. Prophet (PBUH) described the wife as a fragile vessel and said to take care of this vessel that’s fragile. Remember that there is goodness in this vessel so treat it gently.
4. When you advise her, do so in privacy, in a peaceful environment. Advice must not be done in Public, as it’s a type of slandering. 5. Be generous to your wife, for it keeps her loved
6. Move and let her have your seat. It will warm her heart.
7. Avoid Anger. HOW? Keep your abulition at all times. Prophet (PBUH) said if your angry, sit down, if you’re sitting, then lie down. Follow the way of the Prophet (sunnah)!
8. Look good and smell great for your wife. IT keeps the Love!
9. Don’t be rigid. It will break you. Prophet (PBUH) said 'I am the best amongst you and I am the best to my wife'. Being rigid and harsh will not bring you close to God (Allah) and neither does it make you more of a man.
10. Listen to your wife- Be a good Listener [This is the 'L' of SALT!]
11. YES to flattering NO to arguing. Arguing is like poison in a marriage. Al zawai said 'When God (Allah) wants evil for people He will leave them to argue amongst themselves'.
12. Prophet (PBUH) said to call your wives with the best name, any name she loves to hear. Prophet (PBUH) called Aisha 'ya Aish' as an endearment.
13. Give her a pleasant surprise, namely, if she loves watermelon, bring her one out of the blue! It will grow the love in her heart.
14. Preserve your tongue! Prophet (saw) said the tongue will throw people in the hell fire so watch what you say and how you say it!
15. All of us have shortcoming. Accept her shortcoming and God (Allah) will make prosperous your married life.
16. Tell her you appreciate her. Show to her you appreciate her. [There cannot be a more better emphasis on the 'A'of SALT. Not only must I practice appreciation, but I must confirm and reconfirm to my wife that I appreciate her, especially what I appreciate and show or exhibit openly my appreciation. It is not to be in secret.]
17. Encourage her to keep good relationship with her relatives, like her mom and dad.
18. Speak with her on a topic of her interest.
19. In front of her relative praise her. Confirm that she is wonderful, and that she is a good person in front of her family.
20. Give each other gifts. You will love each other more. Prophet (PBUH) said gifts increases love.
21. Get rid of the routine once in a while, surprise her with something, it will get rid of the rust and polish it!
22. We have a demand (Husnul zaan) from God (Allah) that we have to thinkgood of people. Think good of your spouse.
23. Ignore some of her mistakes: pretend you did not see or hear some of her small mistakes. It was a practise of Ali (RA). It’s like putting a hole in your memory. Don’t save it in your memory!
24. Increase the drops of patience, especially when she is pregnant or when she is on her monthly period.
25. Expect and respect her jealousy. Even Aisha (ra) used to get jealous.
26. Be humble. If your profession is good, respect that she is looking after your children, she is much more than you, she is the leader at home, her strength is your strength, and her success is your successes.
27. Don't put your friends above your wife.
28. Help your wife at home. Prophet (saw) used to help his wives at home and he was the best of creation. He used to sew his own clothes.
29. Help her respect your parents, you can’t force her to love them, but she can be helped to gradually love them.
30. Show your wife she is the ideal wife.
31. Remember your wife in your prayers (duaas). It will increase the love and protect it.
32. Leave the past. It brings nothing but pain and grief. It’s not your business. The past is for Allah (swt).
33. Don't try to show her that you are doing her a favour by doing something, like buying food for the house, because in reality we are the courier of sustenance, not the providers, as Allah is the provider. It’s also a way of being humble and thankful to Allah (swt)
34. Satan (Shaitaan) is your enemy, not your wife. Sometime when husband and wife are talking a fight breaks out, then Satan is present there as a third person so he is the real enemy. It is not enough to hate the devil, but you have to see him as an enemy as God (Allah) has commanded. Satan loves divorce. Everyday he asks the devils, what they have done? Some say, 'I have made a person steal', or 'I have made someone drink'. And one devil will say, 'I have made a man divorce his wife', and he is crowned as the one who has done the best job.
35. Take the food and put it in her mouth. Prophet (PBUH) taught us this. It’s a blessing. The food doesn’t just go to her stomach, but straight to her heart. It increases the love and mercy between you.
36. Protect your wife from the evil of the shaitaan and mankind. She is like a precious pearl that needs protecting from the envy of human devils and Satan. 37. Show her your smile. Smile at your wife. It is a charity.
38. Small problems or challenges can become a big problem. Or if there is small thing she didn't like and you keep repeating them anyway, it will create a wall between you. Don’t ignore them as it can become big.
39. Avoid being harsh-hearted and moody. Allah said of Prophet (PBUH), 'if you were harsh hearted they (the companions) would have left you'. It confirms Prophet (PBUH) was not harsh-hearted, so how can we be?
40. Respect her thinking. It’s strength for you. Show her that you like her thoughts and suggestions.
41. Help her to achieve her potential and help her to dig and find success within as her success is your success.
42. Respect the intimate relationship and its boundaries. Prophet (PBUH) said she is like a fragile vessel and she needs to be treated tenderly. Sometime she may not be feeling well; you must respect and appreciate that feeling.
43. Help her to take care of the children. Some men think it makes them appear less of a man but in fact it makes you appear a bigger man and more respected, especially in the sight of God (Allah).
44. Use the gifts of the tongue and talk sweetly to her. Tell her she looks great, be an artist. Pick and choose the gifts of your tongue.
45. Sit down and eat with her and share food with her.
46. Let her know you are travelling. Don't tell her out of the blue as it’s against Islam. Tell her the date/ time of when you are coming back also. 47. Don't leave the house as soon as trouble brews.
48. The house has privacy and secrecy. Once you take this privacy and secrecy to your friends and family you are in danger of putting a serious hole in your marriage. This secrecy stays home. Islam is against leaving them out like a garage sale for anyone to come and pick and choose. 49. Encourage each other for good deeds: Like you could plan a trip for hajj or umrah together. It increases and strengthens the love when you help each other perform a good deeds together like getting up for pre-dawn prayers together or visiting an orphanage together. 50. Know her rights, not only written in paper but engraved in your heart and engraved in your conscious.
51. God (Allah) said, 'Live with your wives in kindness. Treat them with kindness and goodness'. It means in happy times and in sadness treat her with goodness and fairness.
52. Prophet (PBUH) showed that there is a messenger at the time of intimacy which is foreplay. Don’t jump on your wife like an animal!
53. When you have a dispute with your wife don’t tell everyone. It’s like leaving your wounds open to germs so be careful who you share your problems and disputes with.
54. Show your wife you really care for her health. Good health of your wife is your good health. To care for her health shows her that you love her. 55. Don’t think you are always right. No matter how good you are you have shortcomings. You are not perfect as the only one who was perfect in character was Prophet (PBUH). Get rid of this disease.
56. Share your problems, your happiness, and your sadness with her.
57. Have mercy on her weakness. Have mercy when she is weak or strong as she is the fragile vessel. Prophet (PBUH) said that your wife is a trust in your hand.
58. Remember you are her strength, someone to lean on in times of hardship.
59. Accept her as she is. Prophet (PBUH) said that women are created from the rib which is bent. If you try to straighten her you will break her (divorce). Prophet (PBUH) said that you may dislike one habit in her but you will like another of her manners; so accept her as she is.
60. Have good intention for your wife all the time. God (Allah) monitors your intention and your heart at all times. God (Allah) said that 'among His Signs is that He created for you wives from among yourselves, that you may find repose in them, and He has put between you affection and mercy.Verily, in that are indeed signs for a people who reflect'.
May God (Allah) fill your homes and heart with tranquillity, love and Mercy.

Amen (Ameen).

Rafique
I just came across a few lines which emphasize the sharing culture in KM:

So long as man clamours for the I and Mine, his works are naught;
When all love of the I and Mine is dead, then the work of the Lord is done,
For work has no other aim, than getting knowledge,
When that comes, the work is put away.
The flower blooms for the fruit, when the fruit is borne the flower withers,
The musk is in the deer, but it seeks it not within itself, it wanders in quest of grass.


These lines are by Kabir Das, translated by Rabindranth Tagore and shows that our religion and work must be "getting knowledge". Consequently, when the highest knowledge comes, which is spiritual or divine knowledge, "the work is put away" or life passes away. Like the flower dies for the fruit, so must our whole life be devoted to getting knowledge.

Kabir Das is not only revered by the Sikhs, but also by Hindus and Muslims alike.

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