Animals In The Glorious Quran

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  • Animals In The Glorious Quran

  • The Blessed Cow of the Children of Israel


    {And (remember) when Musa (Moses) said to his people, 'Verily, Allah commands you that you slaughter a cow.' They said, 'Do you make fun of us?’ He said, 'I take Allah's refuge from being among al-jahilin (The ignorant or the foolish persons). '}      (Al-Baqarah: 6-7)

    There is a kind of submission and tranquility in my wide eyes that never changes throughout the different circumstances that face me. My eyes remain calm regardless of the existence of enough food, water and work. Circumstances, deeds and words change, however my eyes remain unchangeable. It is true that people's eyes change whenever their mood changes. Perhaps the steadiness of my eyes implies that I never become nervous or agitated. For example, whenever a boring fly stands upon my back I become nervous, wagging my tail back and forth in an attempt to get rid of it. But if such a mean fly remains immovable in its place, I stop wagging my tail, surrendering and yielding at last with pleasure.

    As I am like this with flies, you can imagine my attitude towards a human being with whom I could never be nervous.

    Sometimes, I am afraid of being beaten by him. Therefore, I surrender to my fears. How marvelous is such a life!

    I am a cow, who is completely satisfied with her life. Allah created me as a grace dedicated to others. I do not know the time of my slaughtering. I know that thousands of cows are subject to slaughter. Inside us, there lurks a kind of happiness when we are slaughtered. At this time, we feel that we have reached our ultimate goal.

    How great it is that we become nice food or clothing for the human beings. We feed, clothe and serve them. It is an example of the utmost generosity. The cow is a creature that is used only to giving. We know that man takes everything from us. Moreover, whatever he gives to us is intended to be restored again. He decides to feed us on beans and barley in order to make us fit and strong in body in the near future. Man affords nothing for the sake of Allah. He always accounts for everything. The matter is well counted and well known. However, we never get enraged at this. Irritability, according to our customs, is not allowed. Our ideal saying is summarized in the following, "Let us eat beans and live." While our slogan in this life is, "Yielding is the only way to find real life." That is what we have been taught and what we have inherited and that is what we know.

    One day Satan addressed us saying, "If the cows revolt, there will be a turn in the life of human beings. Man exploits your efforts in the fields, uses your milk to make cheese, cream, butter and honey, then butchers and eats you a cows, we have only one enemy and that is human beings. If you continue surrendering to him, you will never become developed. You were born as cows and so you will be till you die ...Rebel... Move ...Do something."

    We heard the words of Satan, then one of the cows addressed her fellow saying, "O my friend, you were talking about the beans you have eaten from the new field, how is their taste? Is it different from that of the old field?"

    Satan said, "Move … Stop talking about food and stage a revolution."

    The cow said, "O my friend, both of them taste the same."

    Satan went off desperately, mumbling words about cows and human beings but we could not understand what he said.

    After he left one of the cows asked, "Who was here?" Another fellow answered, "Someone we do not know." Another cow said, "Did he say anything?"

    Another one answered her, "He was nervous. He said something that I could not remember." As cows do not remember any thing. As if words enter their right ear just to pass through the left one. We have big heads that do not include any troubles, problems or sorrows and that is why we live for a long time. A day for a man is a whole year for us, full of all kinds of happiness, pleasure, beans and satisfaction.

    I lived among the children of Israel. I was owned by an orphan. In fact, I was an unusual cow, so beautiful when compared to other cows. I was a bright yellow cow and pleasing to the beholders. There was no other color on my body. I was neither too old, nor too young but middling (between the two). I was so nice and rare to be found among other cows.

    Now, I want to speak about the children of Israel who were causing a state of astonishment among us cows. Whenever you hear their words, you believe them. Then you come to find a contradiction between their words and their deeds. They speak nicely to each other, and after that they go in different directions and you find those nice words turned to be very bad.

    I have heard, of course, about our master Musa (Moses). He was their noble Prophet and the one who spoke with Allah. I did not see him but I did hear about him. I heard strange and contradictory words. For sure, those who love him among the children of Israel are very small in number compared with those who hate him. This is normal.

    Musa came with the truth that is heavier than lead for the aggressors. I am not nervous and I am not going to say it loudly. I am so satisfied while I am saying it. I do not oppose what they are doing. For sure, they are free to do whatever they want with themselves. I only mind my own business until the day of my death. It is in butchering that the greatness of cows exists.

    "It was a warm and sunny day." I always hear such an expression. I can understand what is meant by warmth. The meaning of cleanliness is clearly understood by me. Unlike buffaloes, cows do not drink muddy or dirty water or sleep upon wet or unclean beds. We adore cleanliness and refuse anything else. However, I cannot apprehend what is meant by the sun. I heard people talking much about some expressions such as "A sunny day," "The heat of the sun" and "The sun rises and the sun sets" but I have never seen the sun throughout my whole life.

    Sometimes I feel some kind of heat penetrating my whole body, which makes me sweat. Is this the sun? I do not know.

    It is said that the sun is in the sky and such words make the matter even more complex because I do not know where the sky is. It is well known that cows can look at what is in front of them, at their left or their right but never at what is up. This is the same for all animals. No cow looks up and contemplates the sun, if there is really a sun. Anyway if the existence of the sun is uncertain, there remains one thing that is absolutely certain and that is the existence of beans. In the morning, I eat a large amount of beans, swallowing them quickly to save time and effort and to ensure devouring the largest possible amount. After that, I lie down upon my belly ruminating over what I have eaten in the morning.

    Gig ...Gig …Gig

    This is the sound of mastication in my mouth. Mastication is the utmost pleasure. Swallowing is even more delightful. While I was eating, the ground was clean, the dust was humid, the shadow was extended and tranquility was quite perfect.

    Suddenly there was a loud cry. I turned my head slowly. We cows are not easily shaken or excited. No longer had the echo of the first cry ended than we heard another one. Then the whole village was full of cries. "Ilya'il was murdered ...He was the richest one among the children of Israel." I do not know whether his name was Ilya'il or Benjamin or Shu'uraym.

    He had a very difficult name to memorize. Anyway, that did not bother us and had nothing to do with us. So why should we be interested in it?

    That night, we were unable to sleep because of the great noise made by people. The family of the killed man tried to have the murderer punished but they were not able to determine who he was. It seemed that the killed man had occupied a prominent place among the children of Israel and that the ambiguity that surrounded his murder was meant to bring something like an uproar. People decided to resort to the prophet of Allah, Musa for help. One of the cows asked me, "Did the people of the village go to Musa?"

    "Yes," I replied.

    Two days passed, and then she asked me on the third day, "What did Musa say?"

    "I do not know," was her answer.

    We said, "Let us ask anyone else."

    We asked a cow we met in the field, "What did Musa say?" She said, "I will ask about this matter for you."

    After two days, during which we did not remember anything about the matter, by chance we met the cow we had asked before, "What did Musa say?" we asked her.

    She said, "I forgot to ask about that."

    Then we forgot the whole matter. After that, we heard people talking about it again. We know from them that Musa said to his people, “Allah commands you to slay a cow.” Then we realized that the matter was related to us. This fact aroused our interest, which is different from agitation. To be interested in something is allowed according to our customs, but we are not allowed to become agitated. We asked, "Which cow did they slay?"

    We were surprised, because they did not slay a cow. We asked, "How? Were not they told by Musa that Allah commanded them to slay a cow?" Again we were faced with a surprise that the children of Israel said to Musa, "Do you make fun of us?" He saidtake Allah's refuge from being among aj-jahilin (The ignorant or the foolish persons).”

    How audacious they are to do this with the prophet of Allah! He commanded them to slay a cow and so it was a must for them to slay the first cow they saw. However, because of their stubbornness they started negotiating. They falsely accused Musa of making a mockery of them. If they were cows, they would not act in the same way.

    Musa took refuge in Allah from being one of al-Jahilin, so as to mock at his people. He explained to them that the solution of such a case lurked in the butchering of a cow. The matter here was related to a miracle that cannot be measured with what appears normally and naturally in this life amongst people. There is no relation between butchering a cow and knowing the identity of a murderer in an ambiguous crime. Let the children of Israel hit the murderer with a part from the slaughtered cow. Someone was killed and a cow was slaughtered. If the children of Israel hit two dead bodies together, they would know the killer. The murderer would arise from his death to announce the name of his murderer. What is strange about this?

    It is a miracle. Yes. It is a miracle.

    It transcends the limits of our logic and usual thinking and behavior.

    But the life of the children of Israel was never subject to logical reasoning. On the contrary, miracles constituted the dominant law that governed their lives.

    Musa struck the sea with his stick, dividing it into two parts so that the children of Israel could pass through it safely while Pharaoh and his soldiers were drowned. After such a miracle, the people should not be surprised if they faced another miracle.

    If they were cows, they would not behave in the same way. I am about to be nervous but I am not allowed to do so.

    The continuity of miracles in the situation of the cow should not strike anyone with wonder or amazement. But the children of Israel fit in with the proverb that goes, "A leopard does not change its spots." In fact, dealing with them bears no fruit. Moreover, it is extremely tiresome to make any kind of negotiation with them. They made their Prophet Musa cry his heart out, may Allah make their hearts bleed. I am saying so without being bad tempered. We do not become nervous, but we notice whatever we want without excitement.

    Negotiations continued. The children of Israel said to Musa "Call upon your Lord for us that He may make plain to us what it is!" Musa asked His and Their Lord another time and came back to them with the answer, "He says, 'Verily, it is a cow neither too old nor too young, but (it is) between the two conditions, so do what you are commanded. "

    The words here are quite clear. The cow required is neither too old nor too young but middling between the two. So, it was obligatory on their part to slay a cow that fitted this description. But they were the children of Israel, who used to disobey orders. They went to Musa in the beginning to find a solution to this case and to know the identity of the murderer, however, they went on delaying the appearance of the sun of truth by their importunity and pride. They said, "Call upon your Lord for us to make plain to us its color.”

    This is most strange. We would not resort to people rather we would consult cows, "O cows, is it acceptable? Is it sound? What is the value that lurks behind knowing the color of the cow? All cows are the same in the sight of anyone. No one is interested in the color of a cow. What is the most urgent need that makes Musa go to Allah (Glorified and Exalted be He) to ask Him about the color of the cow?"

    Moreover, look at the way they addressed him. They said, "Call upon your lord.”It is as if He is the Lord of Musa only and not theirs. They seemed to be disclaiming their worship of Allah. Nothing could be more haughty or disobedient than this. In spite of being hot-tempered, the patient and generous Musa went on to get answers from Allah to their useless questions.

    He was highly enraged when he came back from the place appointed by Allah and found his people worshiping a calf. Musa lost his patience and threw the Tablets. He did so out of what he had seen that could make any patient person unable to endure or to remain calm. Cows do not worship a calf, so how can man accept something of a lower status than cows by worshiping a calf? They worshiped the husband of us! Nonetheless, Musa went to ask His Lord and asked about the color of the cow.

    Allah told him, "It is a yellow cow, bright in its color, pleasing to the beholders.”

    I thought that the matter was over. The matter of the cow had been completely investigated and they showed their stubbornness, obstinacy and lack of politeness in the most complete form by deferring it too much.

    The matter was studied most thoroughly and treated exhaustively. However, the children of Israel still disputed and remained stubborn. They said, "Call upon your Lord for us that He may make plain to us what it is!" After all that was said and all the previous descriptions, they did not know! How amazing!

    My side is about to burst, my belly is about to explode and my liver is about to be torn in half.

    Nevertheless, they addressed Musa saying, "Verily to us all cows are alike, and surely, if Allah wills, we will be guided."

    Musa, the patient and most mild-tempered one, went to ask His Lord and brought them the following answer. He said, "It is a cow neither trained to till the soil nor water the fields, sound, having no other color except bright yellow."

    All these descriptions fitted me! What do you think the children of Israel would say?

    They said, "Now you have brought the truth.”

    As if he had not brought the truth at first. I was about to lose my nature and myself and become nervous.

    All the negotiations with the children of Israel over the cow were over … I was the chosen cow… I was about to fall into a deep state of rage. I was at the end of my tether! They drove me to an early grave because of their stubbornness and importunity. However, I went happily to the slaughter. I even wagged my tail.

    Whenever I remember the children of Israel while they were negotiating with Prophet Musa and remember their stubbornness and pride, I ask myself, "If this is their state while negotiating with their noble Prophet Musa, so how will be their state if they negotiate with anyone else?'"



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