‘Why Nigerians should adopt prophetic responses to security challenges’
A Visiting Associate Professor of Applied English and Peace Linguistics, Department of English and Literary Studies, University of Ilorin, Dr Mahfouz Adedimeji, in his presentation tagged: “Prophetic Responses To Security Threats In The Formative Years Of Islam”, said: “Despite the immense success of Prophet Muhammad (SAW) and his tremendous impact in the world of almost two billion Muslims who loved and followed him, his life was far from being a bed of roses; in fact, his life was difficult – a bed of thorns.”
Adedimeji, who spoke at the Ramadan Lecture of the Ola Olu Muslim Society of Nigeria, held at the Wings Schools, Iwo, Osun State, said a cursory look at the world, in which Nigeria is an illustrative microcosm, revealed a dismal picture of horror.
“It is as if the devil, Shaitan himself, has completely taken charge of the global affairs,” he said.
Citing security challenges in countries of the world, he said China, Palestine, Syria, Libyan, Afghanistan, Somalia and other Muslim-majority countries like Nigeria are hemorrhaging under the intense pressure of war, conflict and social crisis.
“Hunger, poverty, misery and hopelessness are making many people commit suicide as life is a hell hole for a vast majority. In fact, Nigeria was placed fifth in the list with 15,000 suicides committed in every 100,000 in the world, making Nigerians the most suicidal people in Africa.
“Among us and all over the world, sins have become standardized, faith deregulated, greed upgraded and wickedness celebrated. While millions of people suffer untold hardships and deprivation, a tiny few live in voluptuous luxury.
“In Nigeria, we seem to have systemic breakdown at virtually all levels and our security is perpetually at risk. Alcoholism, drug abuse and sexual immorality, including rape and pedophilia have gained unprecedented ascendancy,” he stated.
In combating this unfortunate situation, Adedimeji said it was high time the Nigeria and its citizens adopted the prophetic responses to security threats.
He recommended at least eight strategies the holy Prophet (SAW) deployed to the various threats that dogged his life.
“It covers three secondary strategies which are migration (hijrah), peace (as-silm), and dynamism. Prevention is the strategy that is intended to alleviate the threats and risks. It covers two secondary strategies which are vigorous image (propagation) and harm prevention (daf’ al-darar) while engagement is face-to-face or bumper-to-bumper type of response. It covers three secondary strategies which are jihad, swiftness and steadfastness (asSabr),” he highlighted.
Adedimeji described the strategies as perseverance and propagation, patience and self-control, prayers, ‘peaceableness’ and conflict prevention as well as counter-attack and confrontation (Jihad).
He said these Prophetic strategies remains evergreen and relevant in coping with the threats Muslims face all the time though all of them may not apply at the same time and place.
“Nevertheless, Muslims everywhere would always find the strategies relevant in their own environment and another,” he said.
Recounting the prophets history and the many threats to his life, Adedimeji said, “In spite of these suffocating threats and acts of terrorism, the prophet (SAW) persevered and was only struggling to invite people to Islam.
“This strategy applies to Muslims of today that they are insulted and assaulted at multiple fronts, yet, they are blackmailed of Islamising a country in which they are being relentlessly pushed to the periphery of national life.
“It also applies in the world where a war of terror is waged against Muslims in the name of the war on terror. This strategy is apt in the context of profiling Muslims and deploying propaganda to dissuade the faint in faith from Islam. Muslims must continue to persevere and propagate Islam this time both locally and globally,” he urged.
Referring to Nigeria and the rest of the world, where the Islamophobic and kufric establishment is to provoke Muslims through false accusations, blatant lies and terrible insults, he said the Prophet’s advice when his counsel was sought was timeless: “do not be angry”, an injunction he repeated and also complied with.
However, Adedimeji described ‘peaceableness’ as disposition to peace or being not contentious or quarrelsome.
He also stressed the need for adequate planning, saying planning includes empowering self and others educationally, spiritually, economically, socially, physically and in all ramifications.
“Lack of planning has taken us to where we are now; and it is only planning that can lead us out of the present plight,” he stated.
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