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Biodegradable Humans, World Muslim Leadership Speech

As-salamu`alaykum warahmatullah.  Peace be on you and the mercy of God. Why are we in the state we’re in? I was given a very interesti...

As-salamu`alaykum warahmatullah. Peace be on you and the mercy of God.

Why are we in the state we’re in?

I was given a very interesting topic to discuss with the World Muslim Leadership Forum in 2012 – I was asked to talk about the impact of technology and how one can become a leader by utilising the technology around us.

But I instantly asked: what does it means to be human? Am I a human being, a consumer, or am I a robot?

The Biodegradable Human

Every one of you is biodegradable and that’s something to think about. Everything you have, everything you’re wearing and own and all the people you talk, it’s all going to end. And that was the message our Prophet brought to us. To wake up and realize you will be on trial for the resources and energy you’re consuming.

I associate myself with what I like to call “eco-jihad”. I’m taking back that word ‘jihad’ as a Muslim's struggle of self-improvement and I’m owning it insha-Allah. Eco-jihad is the life an Eco-Muslim lives but now you might ask what’s one of those? An Eco-Muslim – a new trend? No. An Eco-Muslim is a believer who loves God and loves His provisions and therefore an Eco-Muslim’s life is more organic, wholesome, it’s healthier and simpler.

My teacher said a great expression yesterday, ‘everything a person makes is technology’. And this is true. From the clothes we sew to the flowers we sow we are creators of our own lifestyles. But still some of us are taking more than our share, why?

Founders and awesome Muslim leaders

Prophet Muhammad was THE greatest Eco-Muslim. He embodied frugal living and he chose a life of poverty. His household never had a fridge packed with food so the family of Prophet Muhammad never over-consumed.

They were not busy with serving themselves they were getting busy for others and were also pro-sustainability. They were Human.

There’s a great phrase from the book ‘Green Deen’ by Ibrahim Abdal Matin which explains how human beings are organic sentient beings. I recommend getting this book it will open your eyes to the connection between faith and environmental protection. He says:
"Human beings according to Islam are considered the best of creation. Created from organic materials, Earth, water and infused with the 'fitra' - a divine inclination - humans are from the Earth. The Earth is a part of ourselves. And it is our responsibility to protect it."
So what have you done recently to protect your earth? Abu Hurayra, a Companion of the Prophet, was a gardener who was often found planting seeds. Prophet Muhammad saw him sowing these seeds once and said ‘Abu Hurayra, shall I not tell you something even greater than this? Say: Subhan-Allah, Alhamdulillah, La illaha il’Allah, wallahu-akbar’. In another Hadith the Prophet said for every ‘subhan-Allah’ you read a seed is planted in heaven which grows into a tree and it’s waiting for you insha-Allah. You see what our Prophet was teaching us? Abu Hurayra built a garden in both lives. He knew what that meant, to protect his land. He connected this earth to that earth.

That's what we have to do.
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