Saturday, November 14, 2009

Sirat al mustaqeem - The straight path

My husband knows I will be mentioning him in this post :p

I made him read an excerpt from something I was writing; a fictional character writing a letter to Allah. In it, she asks Allah help keeping her on the straight path and continues, describing the path as what Allah has laid out for us to follow in this world. (What we should do as Muslims, how we should live, to gain Allah's favour as we continue on in this life).

This is how I see the straight path. It's everything that we should do in our religion for Allah. So if we are doing well, we are on the straight path... If we are doing wrong, we are deviating away from what God has told us to do; away from the straight path.

My husband said this was a mistake in what I wrote. That the straight path has nothing to do with this life and that it's a line we will need to walk across on the final day where we either fall to Hell or make it across to Heaven.

I'd heard this before, but I never thought a person could dismiss the straight path as simply a physical path we'll need to deal with only after we die!

The straight path is something I strive for in this life. The straight path is all that is right that I hope to be able to achieve. When I hear sirat al mustaqeem, I think of myself and how I need to do better to follow what God has laid out for us in his perfect system. I don't think about a path over Hell that I could either fall into or manage to walk across.

Are there any scholars that actually don't believe the straight path has anything to do with this life and the way we are supposed to live? Are there any who actually see it as nothing more than a line we'll walk across? How do you personally see it?

10 Comentários:

LK said...

I've always heard it used as in the context you described. That it is the path we are to look for so we can find our way straight to God. I've never heard it used in reference to some kind of line you cross at death, I mean that is when you would find out if you were on the straight path or not but I think you have to be following it previously to end on the straight path.

NeverEver said...

From my knowledge, you can look at it either way, but your actions in this life determine how you pass As-Sirat. The more you try to please Allah, the easier it will be for you to cross this bridge.

Asiya said...

As salaamu alaykum wa rahmatullaah

Candice, I think it's so great that you and your husband are studying together mashaa Allaah. Al-Siraat Al-Mustaqeem mentioned in surah al-Fatihah is indeed the straight path as in the path we seek to follow in this life. The siraat is also the name of a bridge hanging over hell fire that everyone of us will cross over on the day of judgement, and as the hadeeth says, we will all pass over it at different speeds depending on our level of faith and piety. Some of us will fall in, and some of us will be saved. If you look up hadeeths on the events of the last day you will find it is authentic.

May Allaah guide us all on the straight path and save us from the torments of the last day, ameen.

Cecilia said...

Personally I see it like you do :)
but I don´t know what is right about this.

cairo, lusaka, amsterdam said...

I've always seen it the way you do, and I've never heard of the once your husband described. I like to see Islamic as being more spiritual, and so for me the straight path is a path we choose to walk or not walk in everything we do or think.

caraboska said...

OK [disclaimer] I'm not Muslim, but I admit to it never having crossed my mind for sirat al-mustaqim to be anything but the path that leads to heaven - that those who are going to heaven *are already walking on now*. So if I pray 'ihdina as-sirat al-mustaqim', that is what I have in mind. But I admit to taking the next verse completely literally (not reading into it, as some are wont to do, specific religions).

Candice said...

Thanks for the comments! I was looking up some tafsir yesterday on Al-fatiha to get some more information about this and I found that it is seen as the path we are on now in this life. I was relieved that they saw it like I saw it.

Asiya: Thanks for your comment. I will explain it to my husband that way... In the Qur'an, it's referring to how we live this life, but that it's also believed that there's something named the sirat that we will walk across, which is what he was describing to me.

Jamilah said...

As you already know, you were right. In Fatihah, the straight path is keeping on the deen... yes there is a bridge that we must walk over on the day of judgment, but that is not what its talking about.

How does your husband take it when you are right and he is not?

Candice said...

Jamilah: He doesn't accept it... And I don't think he wants to seek out the real answer so he can remain ignorant about it and keep the hope that he is possibly right...

Jamilah said...

Ouch, so does he read these comments too? Believe me, it happens a lot that a revert can know more than a born Muslim because we choose to learn and study from the roots, not just accept everything we are told

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