Sunday, January 11, 2015

Of Paris and The All-Encompassing


For the sky and the rain
The clouds and the wind
For the pain and the doubt
For the lessons and the tears


Paris, yup. Alhamdulillah, all praises is to Allah and to Allah only for finally allowing me to view the Eiffel Tower with my own bare eyes. Despite the mesmerizing picture I was able to capture with my Xperia V, none can challenge how the eye captures this magnificent sight.

And the Eiffel Tower is only man-made. The creation of the 'architects', 'engineers', 'electricians', 'builders' and all those humans hovering around beneath it are far more superior and intensely complex than the metal bars put up to display as one of Paris' iconic monuments.

During my trip there - about four days ago, we have been shocked by the shooting at Charlie Hebdo's headquarters in which 12 people were killed; 3 cartoonists and it's chief editor being amongst them if I got my facts correct inshaAllah. Now this happenned the morning my flight arrived in Paris Beauvais, the line was long and the tourists were many. Like us, I think many were still oblivious of what happened that morning. Before departing from Dublin, my father had warned me that anti-Muslim sentiments are rising in Europe and this proved true after I watched the news about a protest in Germany later that night together with the non-stop reports of the incident that impacted France's strong value on freedom of speech. The days followed as the case becomes more conflicting with the gunmen still being on the loose before finally they are finally gunned down on Friday night, 9th January 2015. In the three days I have found much of the world being a temporary facade; one humans rely on to achieve their desired 'happiness'.

I wonder, that after the Palace of Versailles and its gardens were built, did the French monarchy really found happiness?

"Fair in the eyes of men is the love of things they covet: Women and sons; heaped-up hoards of gold and silver, horses branded (for blood and excellence); and (wealth of) cattle and well-tilled land. Such are the possessions of this world's life; but in nearness to Allah is the best if the goals (to return to)."
(Al-Imran, 3:14)

I wonder if the people of France back in those days were really happy looking at that palace made out gold while they were out starving on the streets?

I wonder if the artists that painted and sculpted the paintings, the sculptures in Louvre actually found contentment and happiness in their work? And if they did, what did other people feel of having a 'section' of them displayed for the world to see? What did the models feel?

What is 'art'?

Questions like these would probably be answered with answers like these:-

"Everyone view the arts differently. Not one person perceive the arts the same as another."

"Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder."

And the list goes on.

Well, I'm not here to debate on that nor will this writing be of the how perception shapes one's view on the arts (sounds like a ToK assignment already). But it will be of this one asma' below.


During my trip, a friend told me that Allah's land is far and wide; without no boundaries. And that this whole world encompasses of what Allah created for humans. That this land, no matter how terrible it is, holds more lessons than we can ever imagine. In it we are able to learn not only from what Allah lets remain of its history but also from the people around.

"Do they not travel through the earth and see what was the End of those before them? They were even superior to them in strength, and in the traces (they have left) in the land; but Allah did call them to account for their sins, and none had they to defend against Allah."
(Al-Ghafir, 40:21)

When looking at this one name of Allah which is Al-Wasi', the meaning behind it is the All-Encompassing, the All-Comprehending, the Boundless, the All-Embracing. Going to Paris - I have to be honest and it's a personal opinion - I found nothing but emptiness. The streets, the buildings, the statues - empty. I saw nothing good in the land of Paris initially and this eroded all my previous impression that Paris was a beauty. But later, as I tried to find meaning to my trip - not wanting it to be a waste, Allah slowly let me learn of Himself by allowing me the opportunity to look beyond what my eyes could feast.

Because Allah is indeed The All-Encompassing.

"And to Allah belongs the east and the west. So wherever you turn, there is the face of Allah. Indeed, Allah is all-Encompassing and Knowing."
(Al-Baqarah, 2:115)

In the far blue sky
There is Allah
In the clouds and the gust of wind
There is Allah
In the sea of people who do not know Allah
Who do not acknowledge Allah
There He stands watch of all His creations

High above the Eifell Tower
Deep inside the Louvre
Around the Garden of Versailles
Lies Allah
He is there for He is Boundless

It is not only in a mosque
Nor only in a seminar can you find Him
It is not only in the company of the believers
can you feel Him
Even at lonely times
Even when only those despise surrounds
He is there
He surrounds us all
He is the All-Encompassing
He is Al-Wasi'

And that was how I got closer to knowing who Allah is. Al-Wasi' is He.


To read more about Allah's other asma' click the following links below inshaAllah. *smiles*

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