Sunday, February 8, 2009


It’s real downtime folks, so like many companies, specially in the financial and service sectors going bust, the currency of the most popular dictum, on which many made a lot of money ie: ‘WORK HARD – PARTY HARDER’ has also gone bust.

Many including yours truly have reverted back to the simpler pleasures of life, one of them being reading of books. After having thumbed through the recent best seller “Dreams from my Father – A story of Race and Inheritance by Barack Obama, gifted by my niece,Zahra an Obama fan, who came visiting from the States, I had to fall back on my small collection of books, to find solace and peace in troubled times.

As I read through Linda Goodman’s STAR SIGNS I came across a this interesting poem therein. May be in good times I may have just smirked and moved on, but as these are bad times, I read it again and again and thought - is it possible, can it be used as a survival strategy, many thoughts rankled my brain. I will not elaborate but share with you the beautiful verse and the blessings of the riwayat, which every mumin does know well, which suddenly came to mind, as I tried to rationalize the truth contained in the verse.

I leave it entirely upon your discernment and prudence to make a judgment, if at all in these difficult time, it can be used as a survival strategy. Very radical indeed, hope some one has the courage to ‘JUST DO IT ’ ( amusing thought whether NIKE themselves are putting faith in their tag line, during this difficult times)

QUOTE : …….. and tonight I’m remembering

those bubbly moments of bittersweet
when a tapped out stranger stops us on the street
to ask you for a dime or a quarter
a fellow Earthling, who’s lost his or her way for a while

you always smile, then give the lost one five dollars
or ten ……. or twenty

even when you’re broke
and it’s your very last five ……. or ten……. or twenty

then, when the Taker looks shocked, as they always do
you call back, over your shoulder

‘ listen, if you want any more
just give half of that away
don’t save it for a rainy day !
rain rhymes with pain
…………. give rhymes with live!’

Pray what are your first thoughts, as you finished reading
‘absolute rubbish’ / ‘far fetched’ / or ‘may be there is truth, of which I know not’

As I conveyed earlier, I read it again and again, what made me read it I know not, and I recalled the riwayat of Moulana Ali (SA) heard many a times in va’az. Forgive my narration, as it is always very difficult to convey it in English.

The household of Moula Ali (SA) had been without food for three days, so Ma Fatema (SA) pleaded with Aqa Ali to arrange for some money, so that food can be bought. Moulana Ali (SA) secured 1 dinar as karzan from a Jew and while returning, he chanced upon Mikdad bin Aswad, sitting in the heat of the day, on the way.

Upon enquiry Moulana Ali came to know that the household of Mikdad had been without food, for past four days, and Mikdad was at his wit’s end, as to how to arrange for some money. Moulana Ali told Mikdad of his own personal plight and said he has just secured 1 dinar as karzan and was returning home.

But Moulana Ali did what only Moulana Ali could only do. He gave Mikdad 1 dinar saying, go Mikdad, buy food and satiate the hunger of your family, who are without food for 4 days at a stretch ALLAHO AKBAR !!!

So giving Mikdad 1 dinar Moulana Ali slowly made his way towards his home, where Ma Fatema (SA) and Imam Hasan (SA) and Imam Husain (SA) .were eagerly awaiting his return.

Here I would like to make a very important observation. Moulana Ali could have easily told Mikdad, that see I have borrowed 1 dinar from that particular Jew, go to him, and borrow one dinar your self. HE SIMPLY GAVE HIS ONE DINAR AWAY !!

As Moulana Ali (SA) was making his way back home, he chanced upon Muhammad (SA) who said, that he intended to partake food with Ahle Bait (SA). Moulana Ali immediately offered the invitation, and both of them hurried towards home.

Every mumin knows this riwayat so very well. What happened when he returned - Ma Fatema (SA) in sujood, and lo and behold the m’aedat from heaven - the look of utter bewilderment and a hint of suspicion in the eyes of Moulana Ali (SA) as he looked at Ma Fatema, and finally Muhammad (SA) telling Moulana Ali (SA) that it was only because of his giving 1 dinar away to Mikdad !!!

So friends, no one on earth can do what Moulana Ali (SA) could do, but we can all learn a lesson, in this difficult time to reach put to those of our fellow brothers, who are in need of our support and understanding.

REACH OUT with your funds, your knowledge, your zeal to serve, the least you can do is to provide a willing ear and proffer some advice and solace.

Let us not merely think of our own self and family , not be mean and narrow minded. Let us have a broad vision and lofty goal. Not to hoard wealth – investing it with the sole purpose of having to avoid sharing it with others. If from this down turn, we have not learnt a lesson, when will we ever learn.

On daily basis we are seeing the stories of investments going down the drain, the high and mighty of the financial world, looked upon as demy gods, biting dust. Those that have received accolades and awards, turning out to be plain and simple cheats.

Difficult times demand difficult decisions to be taken. Are you game ?


Aquil Busrai said...

Good times AND hard times come and go in cycles. Sinec childhood I have taken solace in a sentence on a plaque on my table that reads " This Too Shall Pass Away..." I am not advocating escapism but highlighting a relaity of business cycle.

In 2000 when dot com bust hit the economy, many thought one would not 'survive' the crash. Same set of people basked in the glory of Sensex touching 13000 ! and rejoiced. Now that the economy is again wobbling, prophets of doom have dusted their coats and are once again active in making people believe it is end of the world next Wednesday.

Far from it.

Pragmatic people deal with such crisis with a pattern. First they cut down on unnecessary expenses and consolidate their financial and assets. They also stay away from tempatonof get rich quick proposaland focus on leveraging their own strengths. The list goes on.

Such times bring to surface hidden benefits too. Asgar would nothave read that book but for the fact thathe is worried about current scenario and wants to divert his mind. Many families learn to share resources and many new friends come on teh horizon and provide help from quarters one least expected.

I am not undermining the seriousness of teh economical downturn but if history was a teacher, ceratin types of people survive such downtrends better that others, An they arethe ones who possess resilience and faith.

Anonymous said...

Reading the Quotes-LEARNING FROM HISTORY----THE CYCLE REPEATS ITSELF etc.It just cross my mind,that we r talking only of big financial collapse and fall down of stinkingly rich people.The point we r missing is that each such cycle gives oppurtunity for the birth of new generation of wealth achievers- with there new ideas and brave innovative decisions.
I fully agree with what has been attempted to convey from the article story.
Have faith,help each other,be courageous,be hard working, smart, innovative and wait for a bright new cycle.

Dr Aliasgar lokhandwala