Last Friday in Lismore the local Muslim community held the Islamic ritual prayer called ‘Salatul Istisqaa’, which means ‘seeking rain’ from Allah, for relieving the ongoing ravaging drought and rain to help put out bushfires currently raging NSW, QLD and across the nation.
About 40 men and women joined in offering special supplication for the protection from fire and to ease the situation of those who are suffering after their regular weekly Friday congregational prayer ‘Jumya’.
Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, traditionally offered the special Islamic prayer during times of drought. In Salatul Istisqa, the Prophet would offer supplications such as: ‘O Allah, give us rain that will replenish us, abundant, fertilizing and profitable, not injurious. Grant it now without delay… Send down rain upon us and make it a source of strength and satisfaction… O God, give us a saving rain, good and productive, general and heavy, now and not later, beneficial and not harmful.’
The Quran, Islam’s revealed text, states: ‘O my people! Seek forgiveness of your Lord and turn to Him in repentance. He will send you from the sky abundant rain.’ (Quran, 11:52)
In the pre-scheduled regular sermon before Jumya prayer, those gathered were urged to come forward to help and make contributions towards emergency fundraising initiatives in support of those who are affected by bushfire. It was also highlighted about the instruction of Islam to make such contribution considered ‘Sadaqah’ or righteous charity.
The Muslim community say they wish to extend their heartfelt sympathies for those affected by the bushfire and to show solidarity with drought-ravaged people. The community was also to spurred to provide additional support to fire fighters, authorities and volunteers.
The Muslim Students at the Southern Cross University contacted every possible student, both local and international, who live near the bushfire affected area, and those who have been evacuated from their homes, with offers of food, shelter, transportation and space to store any belongings they could save.
Everyone hopes and prays for the rain to come soon.