بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
We are living in a day where if you take life seriously, you are labelled as too intense. If you try to please Allah, you are a fundamentalist. If you grow a beard or done a niqab, you are an extremist. If you stay away from interest, you are a fool. If you refuse to discuss movies or mock people, you are a bore. If you don’t agree to your elders on a matter which displeases Allah, you are labelled disobedient even if you obey them in every other matter.
But this mindset of stigmatizing people for obeying Allah isn’t something new. It was there when Ibraheem (AS) was labelled a disobedient son for defying his father’s idol worship. It was there when Nuh (AS) was labelled a fool for building a ship in a land locked city. It was there when Lut (AS) was labelled too intense for not being a gay. It was there the day Rasulullah SAW declared his prophethood and overnight the Amin and the Saadiq, the most beloved man of Makkah, was labelled a madman.
It is nothing new.
And when it is said to them: ‘Believe as the people have believed,’ they say: ‘Shall we believe as the fools have believed?’ Verily, they are the fools, but they know not. [Al Baqara: 13]
When the hypocrites were invited to believe in Allah, they asked shall we believe as the fools have believed? Who are these people whom the hypocrites labelled fools? They were the Saabiqoon al Awwaloon, the first of the firsts.
They were the ones who had left their homes, their families, their friends, their societal standings, their running businesses so they could spend their life in accordance to Allah’s will. They were those whose bodies showed wear and tear because hunger was their constant companion. They were those who had sad eyes because their families rebuked them and their friends alienated them.
And the hypocrites, in all their wealth and affluence and social security labelled them “the fools”.
So next time you are labelled a fool, or an extremist or a bore, rejoice! Rejoice that you have a small share of what Ibraheem and Nuh and Muhammad (SAW) had. Rejoice that you have what Abu Bakr and Umar (RA) had.