Today is Friday. A fine day , this is, glorious and merry. Merry , because this is Friday. Our freaking Friday. This is a day that we gather together and pray ; hundreds of thousands strongmen huddled together in proximity. We are able to sit between people we never knew and never met before, every single week, without a football match at hand or a rock concert with deafening drums. Just to listen to a fiddle man with his enchanting words, to bedazzle us with his advice, so that our errands upon this world can run smooth.
That is the way it should be. That is the way it is. That is the way it was. Khutbah in the times of the prophet and sahabat was strong and true to the ears of the believers. Their words can speak with the hearts of the people, able to make the hardest of men shed tears and provoke the most patient of men into great rage. Mere words, I say , are enough to start a revolution. Public speeches of Sukarno made him able to gain the popularity and trust of millions of people. Obama and his promises of "change" made him president of the United States. Words are sharper than swords, if one knows how to use them; because their aim is the heart, and they do not miss.
If our khutbah succeeds to make half of the congregation fall into deep sleep; then what use is the speech, other than to fulfill an obligation? Allah loves when a servant does his deeds with diligence and spirits; a man reading a poorly written text clearly does not suffice.
The strength of a speaker-as my father quotes- depends upon the audience. If one is able to produce good words, but none can listen to him, then he is no speaker . A good speaker is the one who can make people aroused to listen to him, not exactly in excitement, but most probably-yeah. The Friday khutbah should not be made as a mere routine. It is a public speech of great import-I say, in this times where we use words almost more than guns and swords.
The nation is so proud with numerous public speaking competitions , debate tournaments and forums . There are championships here and there, with various hosts and events; all gallant and glorious. Young speakers that I've met, can beat the shit out of the current ministers and government officials should they decide to go to war with words-good gracious, this is indeed true. Talent among young people is numerous and supremely varied. These young men can charm others just with their smiles and their pose on the stage-like a boss. However when it comes to the precious khutbah, there are only losers who cannot even read the text well.
My , this is so wrong. Khatibs in masjids that I've been to don't even make eye contact with the congregation. The speech is always monotonous ; sombre with warnings that don't even sound like one. The issues were sometimes interesting; and at times; boring to death. It was like reading nursery rhymes to sleepy children , that is most succesful ; as men fall under deep slumber in the heat of the day.
The result of this phenomenon should be made clear and known to all-we come and go to the masjid, without any change of heart or tears in our eyes. There are indeed good men who give wonderful khutbahs which win the hearts of the men, but they are not many. In general; they all suck. The end.
Talent among young men should be utilized and used for the ummah-and this , I say is the efficient allocation of resources. It doesn't matter if the good speakers are now bankers or engineers or policemen; they should be made Imam and Khatib-rotations can be made if they are indeed terribly busy with this short life. Imams in the past were not singularly Imam, they were businessmen, labourers and even scientists. Should this happen, I would run to the mosque with enthusiasm every freaking Friday afternoon.
Among the reason young people are reluctant to go to the masjid these days is because it is simply boring, with constant threat of death and that we are all going to hell . Nabi Muhammad , peace be upon him, is a messenger that brings the threat and warnings, but he also brings with him promises of Jannah, he brings peace to the world and happiness among the believers. Constant warning is a must, because we all forget our promises, but not necessarily at all times. The masjid is the place we gather and show our love to each other as muslims, to show that we care and that we , are indeed strong.