The second talk conducted by the Human Enrichment secretariat was titled “Striving in the Path of Allah”. It was held in NUS Business School on 12th October 2012. The talk was delivered by Ustaz Anwar Hussain bin Ismail Ghaney who graduated from Islamic University of Madinah with B.A. in Fiqh and Usul Fiqh and is currently a dakwah officer from Alkaff Kampung Melayu Mosque.
Ustaz Anwar delivering his talk
There have been many misconceptions about the Islamic concept of Jihad which means “the struggle” in Arabic. The word “jihad” is not synonymous to “holy war”. Nevertheless, today, misunderstanding is fuelled by the media resulting in a prejudiced attitude whereby it is presumed that Muslims are responsible whenever any terrorism takes place. The talk aimed to convey the true meaning and concept of Jihad to Muslim students in Singapore which may revolve around one’s internal struggle to live out the Muslim faith as well as possible in addition to building a good Muslim society.
The word jihad has three meanings; (1) strive against desires (2) strive against the devil and (3) strive against the enemy. There has been much controversy in the third meaning today. In brief, the purpose of Jihad Qitali is defence against enmity, oppression, aggression etc. and it is not for the sake of forcing non-Muslims to enter Islam. The key word is “defence”. Allah says: “Let there be no compulsion in religion. Truth has been made clear from error.” (2:256)
Overall, the talk clarified misconceptions and educated undergraduates on the Islamic concept of Jihad – putting in our best and greatest determination to achieve something in God’s cause. It brought forth a new outlook to the perceived definition as well as its relevance and practically.
A timely reminder from Ustaz Anwar,
“You are in this particular situation because Allah puts you in it. Don’t think you got here, got into this course in university by chance or luck. This is your ibadah.”