Ever heard the phrase – ‘I am one with the force and the force is with me’. Now if you’re a lover of Star Wars, you’ll be all too familiar with Chirrut’s mantra – a outcry for comfort and hope. It is meant to connect him deeper to the Force in times of crisis and mental preparation. We too, like Chirrut have an innate force within us which comprehends eternity and the trivial world around us. For most individuals, this ‘force’ may come from external surroundings, places or people.
But for the believer, the ‘muslim’ – the force is He, ‘He is God the One God, the Everlasting Refuge, who has not begotten, nor has been begotten, and equal to Him is not anyone.” (Q122)
So, what does this mean then? What does it mean to be in the presence of a ‘force’? The common assumption would be that when we are in deep pain and hurt, we need not worry – after all, we have the force to protect and comfort us. The modern day and certainly the ‘force’ referred in Chirrut’s Mantra presents the ‘force’ as a magical and enchanting superpower which when called upon responds immediately through sorcery and provides a solution to any given problem. It is unique in that it directly responds to the one who has called for it and wastes no time in doing so. This, however, presents a problem for the believer.
The ‘Muslim’ Force
As Muslims, though Allah is ‘Al-Jalil-, The Majestic, we believe that Allah as our ‘force’ is not to be seen in the way the ‘force’ is conventionally seen as. If we are to see Allah as this, then we would be deeply disappointed when every supplication we make, every time we call out to him during the night, there is no response. Thus, our force is different, our relationship to the ultimate being, the Lord of the Heavens and the world and everything contained within is as such that we as the believers are aware that, He is knoweth of all things, ‘not a leaf does fall from a tree, without his knowledge’. Everything in this world is in sync with his plan for us. It is important to call out to Allah in every instance in our lives – the good, the bad and the ugly but we must understand that his timing is impeccable. Our force has created us, Our force knows what our hearts yearn for. We not only call upon him in times of despair, but we call upon him in times of goodness.
Does this then mean that we must passively endure every hardship – after all Allah is the all-knowing, the omnipotent, the omni-benevolent. No – it means to trust the end result, it means to trust in him, whole -heartily. It is too easy to say that you trust in Allah and that you trust he will do what is right, but we are human, we lose hope, we despair, we cry, we supplicate endlessly and when we don’t see results after 2 weeks, 2 months, a year – we are in agony. But how can we be, because we are believers. Our force is different, He is not like anything else in this world, he is our creator.
When we bury our dead, we utter the simple supplication – ‘to Allah we belong and to him we shall return’. And that is just it – To him we belong, to him do our hardships and trials begin and end. He is knoweth of all that he sends in your way, whether that is good or bad.
To put it simply – the believers ‘force’ could have been like the ‘force’ which is present in Star Wars. Called out in times of crisis and responds immediately with a solution but we would be ignorant. Allah ensures that we hope, trust and call out to him again and again and again, it is through these pleas and supplications that we recognise the true essence of Allah. If we were to be given what we wished for immediately, human nature is such that we become ungrateful, we expect help immediately. Think of a child who receives pocket money without working for it, every week that child will expect to be given it, but had the child worked for it, he would understand the true efforts of his labour, he would be cautious how he would spend it and he would be grateful beyond belief.
So next time you feel you’re in despair and you’re looking for a quick solution, think of how Allah is paving you and building you up. He loves you, and he shows you this by making you call out to him again and again, He could have given you your desires and answered your duas immediately, but would you truly know ALLAH then? Do not forget that our ‘force’ is different – he created us, and he knows how human nature works. Be like the child that works for his pocket money, it is only then that he truly appreciates his efforts.