FOR the first time, the majority of Muslims stayed away from mosques for their weekly Juma congregational prayer, last Friday.
In San Fernando, at the ASJA mosque on Mucurapo Street, only nine people, including the imam, Atiff Majeed Sulaimani, turned up for the prayer. It was the decision of the Council of Scholars that the prayer be suspended for next week as well because of covid19.
Delivering a brief sermon, Sulaimani told the nine worshippers that people must take preventative measures. He said, "There is a prophetic saying in Islam that man must tie his camel first and then place his trust in Allah. For those who are saying that we must trust in Allah and nothing will happen. My question to them is 'Why when they are asleep, they should leave the doors to their homes unlocked. Why do you put big locks on your doors and say I believe in Allah; he will protect me?'"
Reiterating that Muslims should take as much preventative measures to combat the spread of the virus, Sulaimani referred to an incident during the early advent of Islam, in which it was raining very heavily. The person who sounded the Adhan (call to prayer) made an alteration to it.
"Instead of saying 'come to sucess' he said, 'pray in your homes,'" Sulaimani said. "It was a straight command; why bring you out in clay and mud," the imam added.