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we all live in fear

IQBAL EBRAHIM
UNDERSTANDING ISLAM

In today’s world in one way or another, we all live in fear. This fear could be anything from robbery, break in, loss of possessions, harm or hurt, loss of life and a whole range of other fears. On a broader scale if we look at the world of today there are so many wars, conflicts and harm to people the world over.

The most common emotion that we all live with today is Fear.  Fear of loss, fear of tomorrow, fear of failing, fear of harm or hurt.   An evil force is diverting mankind away from the faith in Allah. Looks like this force, is the cause of all the wars, conflicts and confusion. The aim is to dominate the world by creating instability and insecurity.


There are many kinds of fear that we encounter or go through in our daily lives.  There are two areas of fear the known and the unknown. The known fear is a useful fear because it prompts and prepares us to face the real threat.  For example if I am driving down a street and a car travelling in the opposite direction swerves into my lane, fear that strikes me is useful because it prompts me into taking action to prevent ahead on collision.  Also for example if you feel a pain in your chest, jaws or arm, you seek immediate medical attention to identify and seek a cure for it.  We cannot live without fear. When a child places his finger on a flame he learns to fear fire.  A pedestrian respects the traffic for fear of being knocked down or killed.  

But unfortunately in all this fear we seem to have forgotten the ‘fear’ of breaking the commands of our Lord and Creator. Fear in a way that disciplines us is a good thing.  We cannot be a faithful follower unless we respectfully fear Allah.  Fear of the Almighty makes us follow His law and commands.  Says the Noble Quran: “Oh you who believe, fear Allah (SWT) as He should be feared”.  (Qur’an 3: 102)

Islam teaches us that we should have ‘sabar’ that means patience, dedication and steadfastness. We are also taught to have ‘tawakul’ that means complete trust and devotion to Allah.  The beginning of seeking the right path is to love, respect and fear of breaking the commands of Allah.  This fear is similar to Love, it is the fear of losing the good pleasure of our Lord.  We must strive for “His Mercy”, “His Love” by following His commands as spelt out in the Noble Quran and the teachings of all religions.

Allah promises in the Noble Quran:- “Whoever follows My (Allah’s) guidance, on them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve- (Quran 2:38). O you who believe, seek help with patient perseverance and prayers; for Allah is with those who patiently persevere: (Quran 2; 153)
When Muslims read the Quran daily with understanding, they will learn how to conquer fear.  It is a lack or deficiency of belief in Allah that produces a spirit of timidity (fear), uncertainty, reluctance and hesitation.  It is absence of faith and courage that causes many of us to live weak apologetic lives.  We must be free from fear and live with the sure knowledge that Allah, the Creator brought us into this World, is with us.

Allah deals with us according to our expectation from Him.  We should always be hopeful of the mercy and benevolence of Almighty Allah and never be despondent or despairing of His blessings.  By devoting ourselves to Allah, having total fear to displease Him, adopting an attitude of gratitude, we will enjoy more kindness and favour from Him.  We must appreciate what Allah has blessed us with, by appreciating everything Allah gives us; it grows, if one appreciates, whereas by complaining the abundance depreciates. “When trouble touches man, he cries unto Us; but when We bestow a favour upon him, he says ‘this has been given to me because of a certain knowledge I have. Nay but this is a trial, but most of them do not understand”. (Quran 39: 49)   

Let’s face if difficulties come to all of us, but the successful person or fearless person use the difficulties as a stepping stone to advancement. We should not compromise ourselves every time we are confronted with difficulty We must at all times pray to Allah, have faith in Him.  This life is short.  We only live one life, and without doubt it will soon be past.  Only what we do for Allah our Creator and in his name, will last. Allah has promised us, if we believe in Him, Life will be a pleasure we will be totally free from fear in all areas of our lives.  

Whoever places his trust in Allah, will be free from fear and grief.  Those who have faith in Allah, shall be safe, there is safety and deliverance in Allah.  Serve Allah without fear. The Qur’an is overflowing and rich with verses that promise good for mankind, to those who follow the guidance of Allah:  “On the faithful shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve”.  Fear is the greatest spiritual hindrance that keeps people from committing themselves to Allah and enjoying a rich, abundant and fulfilling life. If we follow Allah’s law and have faith in Him, no fear in any way will come on us when Allah is our Cherisher, Defender, Helper, our Hope and our comfort.

We must also avoid negative emotions such as fear, jealousy, hatred, envy, revenge, greed and anger.  These emotions must be replaced by emotions of desire, faith, love, enthusiasm and hope.  We must resist fear, control our thoughts and anticipate good things in life. We must also avoid negative emotions such as fear, jealousy, hatred, envy, revenge, greed and anger.  These emotions must be replaced by emotions of desire, faith, love, enthusiasm and hope.  We must resist fear, control our thoughts and anticipate good things in life.

Expectation and hope is a positive motivating force in our daily lives. Hope can be compared to a magnet that draws us towards our goal.  Hope causes us to say Insha-Allah (Allah willing) “I can do it, I will succeed”.  Hope motivates us, drives us and pushes us ahead in life.  Love of Allah and love of our fellowman casts out fear.  

In the Qur’an, Allah refers to this world as, “The Fount (source) of Abundance”.  ‘To you we have granted the Fount of Abundance, therefore to your Lord turn in Prayer and sacrifice (Quran 108: 1-2).  In this world we have been blessed with a fount of abundance.  We must pray to Allah and devote our life for the good of Humanity and enjoy the bounties of Allah.

Let us focus our attention upon success, expectation and hope as they are a positive motivating force, like earlier quoted hope is like a magnet that draws us towards our goal.  Thereby hope causes us to say Insha-Allah (Allah willing).  Hope motivates us, drives us and pushes us ahead in life.  Love of Allah, when it controls us; fear is conquered love is the way to conquer fear. 

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Export Processing Zones: How to Get SEZA to Sizzle

23rd September 2020
Export Processing Zone (EPZ) factory in Kenya

In 2005, the Business & Economic Advisory Council (BEAC) pitched the idea of the establishment of Special Economic Zones (SEZs) to the Mogae Administration.

It took five years before the SEZ policy was formulated, another five years before the relevant law was enacted, and a full three years before the Special Economic Zones Authority (SEZA) became operational.

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Egypt Bagged Again

23rd September 2020
Samson

… courtesy of infiltration stratagem by Jehovah-Enlil’s clan

With the passing of Joshua’s generation, General Atiku, the promised peace and prosperity of a land flowing with milk and honey disappeared, giving way to chaos and confusion.

Maybe Joshua himself was to blame for this shambolic state of affairs. He had failed to mentor a successor in the manner Moses had mentored him. He had left the nation without a central government or a human head of state but as a confederacy of twelve independent tribes without any unifying force except their Anunnaki gods.

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‘RO, ‘RO ‘RO YOUR ‘BOT

23rd September 2020

If I say the word ‘robot’ to you,  I can guess what would immediately spring to mind –  a cute little Android or animal-like creature with human or pet animal characteristics and a ‘heart’, that is to say to say a battery, of gold, the sort we’ve all seen in various movies and  tv shows.  Think R2D2 or 3CPO in Star Wars, Wall-E in the movie of the same name,  Sonny in I Robot, loveable rogue Bender in Futurama,  Johnny 5 in Short Circuit…

Of course there are the evil ones too, the sort that want to rise up and eliminate us  inferior humans – Roy Batty in Blade Runner, Schwarzenegger’s T-800 in The Terminator,  Box in Logan’s Run,  Police robots in Elysium and  Otomo in Robocop.

And that’s to name but a few.  As a general rule of thumb, the closer the robot is to human form, the more dangerous it is and of course the ultimate threat in any Sci-Fi movie is that the robots will turn the tables and become the masters, not the mechanical slaves.  And whilst we are in reality a long way from robotic domination, there are an increasing number of examples of  robotics in the workplace.

ROBOT BLOODHOUNDS Sometimes by the time that one of us smells something the damage has already begun – the smell of burning rubber or even worse, the smell of deadly gas. Thank goodness for a robot capable of quickly detecting and analyzing a smell from our very own footprint.

A*Library Bot The A*Star (Singapore) developed library bot which when books are equipped with RFID location chips, can scan shelves quickly seeking out-of-place titles.  It manoeuvres with ease around corners, enhances the sorting and searching of books, and can self-navigate the library facility during non-open hours.

DRUG-COMPOUNDING ROBOT Automated medicine distribution system, connected to the hospital prescription system. It’s goal? To manipulate a large variety of objects (i.e.: drug vials, syringes, and IV bags) normally used in the manual process of drugs compounding to facilitate stronger standardisation, create higher levels of patient safety, and lower the risk of hospital staff exposed to toxic substances.

AUTOMOTIVE INDUSTRY ROBOTS Applications include screw-driving, assembling, painting, trimming/cutting, pouring hazardous substances, labelling, welding, handling, quality control applications as well as tasks that require extreme precision,

AGRICULTURAL ROBOTS Ecrobotix, a Swiss technology firm has a solar-controlled ‘bot that not only can identify weeds but thereafter can treat them. Naio Technologies based in southwestern France has developed a robot with the ability to weed, hoe, and assist during harvesting. Energid Technologies has developed a citrus picking system that retrieves one piece of fruit every 2-3 seconds and Spain-based Agrobot has taken the treachery out of strawberry picking. Meanwhile, Blue River Technology has developed the LettuceBot2 that attaches itself to a tractor to thin out lettuce fields as well as prevent herbicide-resistant weeds. And that’s only scratching the finely-tilled soil.

INDUSTRIAL FLOOR SCRUBBERS The Global Automatic Floor Scrubber Machine boasts a 1.6HP motor that offers 113″ water lift, 180 RPM and a coverage rate of 17,000 sq. ft. per hour

These examples all come from the aptly-named site www.willrobotstakemyjob.com    because while these functions are labour-saving and ripe for automation, the increasing use of artificial intelligence in the workplace will undoubtedly lead to increasing reliance on machines and a resulting swathe of human redundancies in a broad spectrum of industries and services.

This process has been greatly boosted by the global pandemic due to a combination of a workforce on furlough, whether by decree or by choice, and the obvious advantages of using virus-free machines – I don’t think computer viruses count!  For example, it was suggested recently that their use might have a beneficial effect in care homes for the elderly, solving short staffing issues and cheering up the old folks with the novelty of having their tea, coffee and medicines delivered by glorified model cars.  It’s a theory, at any rate.

Already, customers at the South-Korean  fast-food chain No Brand Burger can avoid any interaction with a human server during the pandemic.  The chain is using robots to take orders, prepare food and bring meals out to diners.  Customers order and pay via touchscreen, then their request is sent to the kitchen where a cooking machine heats up the buns and patties. When it’s ready, a robot ‘waiter’ brings out their takeout bag.   

‘This is the first time I’ve actually seen such robots, so they are really amazing and fun,’ Shin Hyun Soo, an office worker at No Brand in Seoul for the first time, told the AP. 

Human workers add toppings to the burgers and wrap them up in takeout bags before passing them over to yellow-and-black serving robots, which have been compared to Minions. 

Also in Korea, the Italian restaurant chain Mad for Garlic is using serving robots even for sit-down customers. Using 3D space mapping and other technology, the electronic ‘waiter,’ known as Aglio Kim, navigates between tables with up to five orders.  Mad for Garlic manager Lee Young-ho said kids especially like the robots, which can carry up to 66lbs in their trays.

These catering robots look nothing like their human counterparts – in fact they are nothing more than glorified food trolleys so using our thumb rule from the movies, mankind is safe from imminent takeover but clearly  Korean hospitality sector workers’ jobs are not.

And right there is the dichotomy – replacement by stealth.  Remote-controlled robotic waiters and waitresses don’t need to be paid, they don’t go on strike and they don’t spread disease so it’s a sure bet their army is already on the march.

But there may be more redundancies on the way as well.  Have you noticed how AI designers have an inability to use words of more than one syllable?  So ‘robot’ has become ‘bot’ and ‘android’ simply ‘droid?  Well, guys, if you continue to build machines ultimately smarter than yourselves you ‘rons  may find yourself surplus to requirements too – that’s ‘moron’ to us polysyllabic humans”!

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