I Bear Witness...


“Asy-hadu al-la ilaha illaLlah, wa asy-hadu anna Muhammadar Rasulullah.” (I bear witness that there is no God but Allah and I bear witness that Muhammad SallAllahu ‘alaihi wa sallam is the messenger of Allah.)

That statement above is the syahadah. To be a Muslim, one has to testify to the above statement, without which one’s Islam is not valid. No human being will be accepted into the heavens of Allah s.w.t without the syahadah. And the syahadah is the first of The Five Pillars of Islam.

For most of us, the first time we made our syahadah would be when we were very young, when we started praying, during the tasyahud. Since then, have we ever asked ourselves, what is the meaning of that we mention?

Let us look again at the syahadah. It starts off with “I bear witness…” So what is it that we Muslims claim to witness? When we say we witness there is no God but Allah, what do we witness? How do we answer when being asked such a question?

The witnessing of Allah is actually all around us. It is so close to us that most of us do not realise. It is actually the witnessing of His creations. His signs. It is to see The Creator in the creations.

Let’s take for example, a flower. We can see how beautiful a flower is. That is a sign of Allah. Allah is the Most Beautiful of all the beauty you can see in this world. Another example closest to all of us: our mothers. A mother is a sign of the mercy (Rahmah) of Allah. The most merciful of all mothers, Allah is even more merciful than that.

The second part of the syahadah is to witness that Muhammad (SallAllahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) is the Messenger of Allah. The majority of Muslims have not seen Rasulullah (SallAllahu ‘alaihi wa sallam). So just like witnessing Allah, to witness that Muhammad (SallAllahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) is the messenger of Allah is to witness the signs.

Rasul (SallAllahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said, “Al-ulama’ warithatul anbiya’”. Which means, the scholars are the heirs of the prophets.

Thus, the scholars/saints hold the signs of Rasul (SallAllahu ‘alaihi wa sallam). Just like how Allah’s signs are not compact into one creation, different scholars/saints hold the different characteristics of Rasul (SallAllahu ‘alaihi wa sallam).  Each of them represents partially how Rasul (SallAllahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) was. A combination of all of their characteristics is how we can see the noble attributes of Sayyidina Rasul (SallAllahu ‘alaihi wa sallam).

With a better understanding of the syahadah, let us strive to be true witnesses, and live this life to realise our syahadah. May Allah guide us to be true believers and may He make us be closer to Him, each and every single day of our lives. Amin. Wallahu a’lam.