Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Survival of the Fittest

As salaamu alaikum wa Rahmat Allah wa Barakatuh.

Subhaan Allah! I was thinking about being able to live off the land, being able to survive if left with nothing but nature surrounding you. It kept coming back to me that the people who are farming, building natural homes, and making everything for themselves are mainly not Muslim. They are, however, earth-conscious, far-seeing people who understand what they need to do to survive when all else may be lost. It was our tradition, it is the Sunnah, but many of us are so far away from that lifestyle now.

Allah perfected our religion - Islam - for us. Our children are the future of this beautiful religion. Are we to die out due to lack of survival skills, simply because dunya has pulled us so far away from the simple, self-sustaining life modeled in the Sunnah? In the event of necessity, will we or our children be at the mercy of non-Muslims or have to compromise our beliefs to get food and shelter? We need to learn survival skills ourselves! We should be able to slaughter - all the family members, not just the men. We should be able to grow our own food. We should be able to build a house, and teach our children so they will not be forced to compromise their Islam to work for the money to buy one. We should be able to tend to animals, cook from scratch, sew basic garments, and live a good life from what Allah has put on this earth, inshaa'Allah.

Does this mean we all have to be farmers? No. Everyone in the time of the Prophet, peace be upon him, wasn't a farmer. People had different skills and worked together. The ironsmith, the carpenter, the merchant, the farmer all bartered and exchanged goods and services. The person who doesn't want to farm, offers another beneficial skill to the community. But everyone should have some basic knowledge of how to provide for themselves.
Envisage this: Enough land to build a home from the natural resources available, grow food, raise animals for eggs, milk, meat, etc. Like-minded families can build homes there, and share skills and know-how inshaa Allah. A central masjid will be the hub of the community, with delegated teachers for the children inshaa Allah. As far as possible, a self-contained community with solar/wind powered energy so there will be no reliance on utility companies and no monthly utility bills. The sale of excess crops, handiwork, etc. would provide enough income to pay for necessities from outside, inshaa Allah. This is truly sticking together and taking ourselves away in times of fitnah.

How better to build up our ties of brotherhood/sisterhood and live like the Sahabah (may Allah be pleased with them)? When I see all the community shared farms these days, I think of how much we could do as Muslims and have ample food. Not only that, we would finally get away from the burden of consumerism that we will have such a hard time answering Allah subhaana wa taala, about when we are questioned.
Whatever step we take to self-sufficiency will insha'Allah benefit us and the generations to come. We can pass the knowledge on and leave a legacy, bi ithn Allah.
When it boils down to survival of the fittest, where will the Muslims be?


  1. I love this! I have been thinking on living off the earth a lot often as well. I have read some free Kindle books on agriculture, on the beauty of the simple life and I want to live that lifestyle soooo badly. I think this technological age we live in is just not good for the soul.

  2. It is mainly non-muslims that welcome this type of lifestyle. I remember reading an article about the Amish(?). They would all pitch in canning food for the community, and store it in a community store. I really liked how they worked together, it was not about competing but about helping each other out.

  3. As salaamu alaykum Kaighla.

    May Allah make your hopes a reality - ameen!

    The more I read and learn about Islam, the more I see that without serious simplification, we will not succeed. We have spent so much time worrying about the quality and look of the soles of our shoes and forgotten about the quality and look of the souls Allah gave us.

    A man once asked Muhammad b. Wâsi’ for advice. He replied, “I advise you to be a king in this world and the hereafter.” The man enquired, “How?” He replied, “Lose interest in worldly things (practice zuhd).”

    Al-Dhahabî , Siyar A’lâm Al-Nubalâ` in his biography of Muhammad b. Wâsi’.

  4. As salaamu alaykum Umm Salwaa!

    Yes, the Amish are community focused and get together to do big jobs, such as barn raising, for the families. I just think of the muhaajiroon building the first masjid with our beloved Prophet, salla Allahu alayhi wa sallam, and the beauty of the unity and teamwork involved. Subhaan Allah, they were involved with each other on a daily basis, growing together and learning.

    It is time for us to work together for the common good, for community and ummah, rather than sit in our houses and make a phone call to check on others now and then.

  5. Salam walaykum ya Mai! This post was awesome, masha'Allah. I recently watched the film "Earthlings" and it struck a chord with me about how ignorant we've become with regards to our khalifaship over the earth. I've always cared about the environment, but this post pretty much sums it up in a nutshell. We need to take this step as muslims, for our own preservation. Thank you for this reminder!