Death strikes down.
— Imam Ali a.s.
(Ghurar al-Hikam: The Appointed Time Of Death)
In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful. All praise is due to Allah, the Lord of all the worlds. May peace and blessings be upon our beloved Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ), his pure progeny, and his noble companions.
The Arabic Hadith of Imam Ali (عَلَيْهِ ٱلسَّلَامُ) states, "الأجل يصرع" which translates to "Death strikes down." This concise statement holds essence and serves as a reminder of the inevitable reality that every human being must face - death.
The word (al-ajal) "الأجل" refers to the appointed time of death, the predetermined moment when a person's life will come to an end. It is a reminder that death is a certainty for every soul, regardless of their status, wealth, or power. This concept is emphasized in the Quran in Surah Al-Ankabut, verse 57, where Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَىٰ) says,
Every soul will taste death.
The word (yasra'u) "يصرع" is derived from the root word (sara'a) "صرع", which means to strike down or to seize. It signifies the sudden and forceful nature of death, as it overtakes individuals without warning or discrimination. This is further emphasized in the Quran in Surah Al-Jumu'ah, verse 8, where Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَىٰ) says,
And when the prayer has been concluded, disperse within the land and seek from the bounty of Allah, and remember Allah often that you may succeed.
Reflecting on this Hadith, we are reminded of the transient nature of life in this world. Death is a reality that awaits each and every one of us, regardless of our age, health, or aspirations. It serves as a wake-up call, urging us to reflect upon the purpose of our existence and to prioritize our actions accordingly.
This Hadith also highlights the importance of preparing for the inevitable meeting with our Creator. It serves as a motivation for us to engage in righteous deeds, seek forgiveness for our sins, and strive to lead a life that is pleasing to Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَىٰ). As mentioned in the Quran in Surah Al-Mulk, verse 2,
Who created death and life to test you [as to] which of you is best in deed.
Furthermore, this Hadith reminds us of the transient nature of worldly possessions and the futility of chasing after material wealth. It encourages us to focus on the eternal life in the Hereafter and to invest in actions that will benefit us in the afterlife. As stated in the Quran in Surah Al-Hadid, verse 20,
Know that the life of this world is but amusement and diversion and adornment and boasting to one another and competition in increase of wealth and children - like the example of a rain whose [resulting] plant growth pleases the tillers; then it dries and you see it turned yellow; then it becomes [scattered] debris.
In conclusion, the Hadith of Imam Ali (عَلَيْهِ ٱلسَّلَامُ) "الأجل يصرع" serves as a powerful reminder of the inevitability of death and the transient nature of this worldly life. It urges us to reflect upon our purpose, prioritize our actions, and prepare for the meeting with our Creator. May Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَىٰ) grant us the wisdom and guidance to live a life that is pleasing to Him and may He grant us a good ending.
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