Friday Sermon: The Islamic way of celebrating the New Year

 The New Year is InshaaAllah starting after two days. We Muslims begin the New Year through the lunar calendar and even the Gregorian calendar. The lunar year is not only followed by the Muslims but in the ancient times it was used by many other nations such as Chinese and Hindus to start their new year. It is found in many other religions too. Before Islam, the Arabs used the lunar calendar to calculate the number of days. In the world, Gregorian calendar is used widely therefore every nation and every country has chosen it for the calculation of days. Likewise, following it December 31st is the last day of the previous year and January 1st is celebrated as a start of the New Year. Anyways, years come, twelve months pass by either it is a lunar year or a Gregorian year but the worldly individuals spend the days, months and years in worldly affairs and interests. The worldly people, either they are from Muslims or non-Muslims; the start of the New Year is celebrated with full enthusiasm. In the western developed world, the New Year's Eve is celebrated with a lot of activities. The people stay awake for the entire night and spend their time partying and consuming alcohol. Thus, the last year is concluded and the New Year is started with such immoral worldly activities. Majority of the people have no religious concern therefore they cannot reach out to the depths that a true believer can achieve. The majesty of a true believer is not only to express despair over such worldly activities but also to conduct a self-audit and evaluate the year that has passed. What have we earned and lost through this year? Will the true believer evaluate the year through a worldly lens or will it be through religious and spiritual perspective? And if it has to be on the spiritual scale then need to look into the standard of it so that it can truly reveal what has been lost and what has been gained. We Ahmadis are very fortunate that Allah has given us the instruction of the following of the Promised Messiah (Peace be on Him) who presented to us the summary of the teachings of Allah and his Prophet (Peace be Upon Him) and also showed us the high standards to evaluate our deeds and spiritualty. If this standard is kept in assessment then we can surely achieve the standards of true believers. These are the conditions to rightly judge your standards of good deeds. Every Ahmadi undertook the Bai'at and thus through this the Promised Messiah (Peace be on Him) gave us the instructions to follow and thus also expected from every Ahmadi to self-evaluate themselves every day, every week, every month and every year. Thus, if we spend the last night of the previous year and the new day of the New Year pondering over our spiritual conditions and by spending time supplicating towards Allah then we will be the ones who will be working towards a good life hereafter. And if we also indulge in worldly wishes and affairs, then we will lose a lot and gain nothing. If the weaknesses still prevail and the self-evaluation does not give us peace then we should pray to Allah that the coming year may not be the one that would show us a reduction in spiritual enhancement. Instead our every step should be to gain the pleasure of Allah. Our everyday should be reflective of the good model of the Holy Prophet (Peace be Upon Him). Our days and nights should be spent in a way that help us fulfill our pledge to the Promised Messiah (Peace be on Him). The pledge that questions that have we not committed any sin of 'Shirk', this is not the 'Shirk' of idolatry but according to the saying of the Holy Prophet (Peace be Upon Him) It is diminished good deeds or showing off of the good deeds. The Shirk is that of the indulgence in the hidden volitions. Are our Salats, Fasting, financial sacrifices, work towards humanity, sacrifice of time for Jama'at work truly for the sake of Allah or to show off to the people? Were the hidden wishes in our hearts standing in opposite to Allah? The Promised Messiah (Peace be on Him) has provided an elaboration to it by saying... Read Full Summary