Writers' Articles

Aspiration for Truth


How wonderful it is to observe the innocence of children.  Taking every word spoken as the truth, these little ones with bright eyes and immense hope are so full of trust.  Just as beautiful are the adults, their guiding examples, which honor that innocence and try to preserve it with the careful use of their tongues. 

All too often, that innocence is not preserved.  Little by little that brightness fades with the discovery of untruth.  It can begin with as simple a thing as a parent's words like, "I'll take you to the park, if you eat your vegetables," hoping the child would forget, never intending to keep that promise.  Or maybe it is a form of "discipline" used to scare the child into compliance like, "I'll get the doctor to give you a shot, if you don't stop that."  Then again, it could be as careless an action as telling the child a joke that involves a lie to make them laugh.

What a dreadful pity it is when the day comes that a child no longer trusts the words of others.  But then, whether it is a child, teenager, or adult, the age doesn't matter.  It is a shame when trust is lost and hearts turn hard toward one's fellow brother or sister in humanity.  Eventually it comes to the point where one hears the words but wonders, "Can I rely on what is said?"  And looking into the eyes of the speaker trying to see into their heart, one inwardly asks, "Is this person telling me the truth?  Is s/he worthy of my trust?"

On the other hand, there are those who know the value of honesty.   They are the ones that recognize the ease with which one can vocally send forth waves of benefit or destruction.  They guard against letting a breath of harm slip from their lips.

And then, there are those who are ever aware of the presence of the All-Hearing, the All-Seeing.  They not only seek honesty but righteousness.  They long for sincerity.  They hunger for certainty.  They search for the Ultimate Truth.  They find it written in the Quran, the Words of the All-Knowing.  They discover its understanding in the pious example of Prophet Muhammed (peace and blessings be upon him).

It is these that heed the warning against lying even when joking and especially in trade.  It is these who realize why, like murder and adultery, spreading falsehood is one of the five major sins.  It is these who strive to ensure that their each word is spoken with accuracy and in accordance with the Almighty's will.  They endeavor to achieve the excellence of the Prophet's verbal integrity.

What pleasure it is to be in the company of those who speak the truth and restrain their mouths even in anger.  What a sense of security presides in their presence given that you know their words will not harm you.  How great it is to be able to find reliability in another human being!  How intriguing it is that one's heart inclines toward such a person.  How amazing it is that the eyes of these individuals seem to be windows to the purity they hold within.  What inspiration the Truth can instill in us!

As a native of Texas who converted to Islam at age nineteen, Najla Tammy Ilhan strives to share glimpses of the wisdom she has found in the seventeen years since


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