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Thursday, August 11, 2011


Abu ‘Abdullah, the last Khalif of Granada, Andalus (Spain) was fleeing in exile to Morocco in January 1492. The mother of the Khalif scolded his son, “Do not weep like a woman for what you could not defend like a man!”

The Muslim rule of Andalus which lasted for over 700 years (711-1492) was over. Granada, the last stronghold of the Moors capitulated to the Spanish army on that fateful January 1492.

Thousands of lives had perished. Al-Hambra, the resplendent palace was lost. Over 1,005,000 volumes of works on Moorish culture had been burnt. Ferdinand, the King of Spain issued an edict of expulsion which sent 100,000 Jews to Portugal.

It was in the summer of  711 (92AH) that Tariq ibn Ziyad was ordered by the Governor of North Africa, Musa  Ibn Nusayr to invade Andalus with 12,000 Arabs and Berbers. While crossing the Straits of Gibraltar (Jabal Tariq) Tariq saw in his dream Prophet Muhammad s.a.w. said "Take courage, O Traiq! and accomplish what you are destined to perform."

The tyrant Visigoth king of the Iberian Peninsula, Roderic met Tariq with more than 100,000 men at the battle of Guadalete. Tariq defeated them and killed the king with his own hands.

Ibnu'l-Ahmar was chosen as the Khalif of Granada in 1238 which he ruled for 34 years. He was responsible for the building of the Alhambra Palace at Granada.

Architecture par excellence - in harmony with nature, incorporating natural elements of shadows, sunlight, sound, wind, animals and scenery to their best in the design.

The effect of splashing and rippling sound of water is as if we are nearby to a waterfall or river flowing through boulders. It has a cooling, tranquil and pleasant effect on the minds and emotions.

From Greek to Roman to Arabic baths. Such was the flow of knowledge, culture, science and technology from civilisation to civilisation in the past.

We are proud that the Arabs had reached the peak of Muslim civilisation at one time for their accomplishment in so many fields of  knowlege -  empire building, philosphy, art, literature, architecture, travel,  science such as astronomy, mathematics, medicine ....

What went wrong then that they are now in turmoil? Was it a dream afterall?

The condition of peace and prosperity are essential in knowledge seeking.

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