Let us take a moment to reflect upon the great sacrifices made by Prophet Ibrahim (peace be upon him) and his family in faithfully fulfilling the injunctions of Allah (the Most Glorified), which are now synonymous with sacrificial worship. We should also reacquaint ourselves with the wisdom that informs the story of Habil and Qabil, in which Habil, who, though as a slave had to endure the injustices that slavery visited upon him, was never wanting in sincere gratitude for the manifold mercies of God, the Most Compassionate.
According to Imam Ghazali, the slaying of sacrificial beasts is a metaphor for our getting rid of the base, animalistic, tendencies within us, tendencies such as cupidity, miserliness, hubris, envy, and other, equally vile, triggers of brutish and disgraceful behaviour. With the observance of sacrificial worship, it is fervently hoped that all of us, especially the members of the UUM community, would be able to prevent the reprehensible manifestations of the said tendencies, which can result in immense loss to the individual, family, community, and institution. Alongside this observance, we must continue to demonstrate our gratefulness for all of Allah’s blessings by performing our duties to the best of our abilities. We should be mindful of Allah’s decree in verse 2 of Surah Al-Kautsar, which states:
“So, offer your prayers to your Lord and perform the sacrifice as a gesture of your thankfulness.”
Aidiladha also lays emphasis on the spirit of unity amongst us. This can be seen in the cooperation that is required of us every time we perform religious sacrifice. The members of our community invariably work closely together throughout the sacrificial process – from the time of the slaughter of the animal till the equitable distribution of the sacrificial meat. If such close collaboration can be successfully translated into our work culture, it will most certainly effect a true unity of hearts, one which can transcend differences in rank, income, intellectual wavelengths, political leanings, etc. and bring to spectacular fruition the mission and vision of our university.
On the occasion of this noble day, my wife, family, and I would like to take this opportunity to wish all the Muslims in our UUM community a Happy Hari Raya Aidiladha. I pray that those of the UUM community who have been chosen to be guests of Allah in the Holy Land this year, will perform the religious rites of the Hajj to Allah’s satisfaction.
Lastly, let us, together, celebrate the Festival of Sacrifice in utmost humility so that all our sacrifices will be assessed by Allah to be truly charitable work, sufficiently worthy to stand us in good stead on the Day of Reckoning when we shall finally face Allah, the Most Sublime.
Wabillahi Taufik Walhidayah Wassalamualaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh
Professor Dato' Seri Dr. Mohamed Mustafa Ishak
Universiti Utara Malaysia
CORPORATE COMMUNICATION UNIT
UNIVERSITI UTARA MALAYSIA
TEL.: 04-928 3042/3047/3050
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