THE KEYNOTE ADDRESS BY THE DIRECTOR ADMINISTRATION, VANGUARDS ACADEMY, DR ADENIYI OMOTOPE ZAFARAN, ON THE OCCASION OF THE 5TH GRADAUTION CEREMONY HOLDING AT THE SCHOOL PREMISES ON 16TH OF JULY, 2011 (15TH OF SHA‘BAN, 1431)
WE THANK Allah (SWT) for His boundless bounties. We ask Him to shower His choicest benedictions on the noble Prophet Muhammad. I greet YOU all with the noblest of greetings in all spheres of existence; I say As-Salaam alaykum warahmatullah wabarakatuh. It is another season of pleasant atmosphere to celebrate success and appreciate the bounties of Allah (SWT) on Vanguards as the trainer, on graduates as the trainees and parents as facilitators. This tripartite role has culminated into G42 today. I congratulate them for joining the teaming G13, G23, G33 and G41.
Just as a seed becomes a tree bearing fruit; just as an egg becomes a chick; just as a yam tuber becomes a big and full yam; just as a soccer becomes a banana tree; so will you one day become a man or woman. You will be righteous then if you start now. To become a righteous adult, you must start now to plant the seed of your future. What you will become is what you start to do now. If you are lazy or sluggish, you will become a sluggish or lazy father or mother.
Remember, you were born and have been trained to be actors and not Spectators. The future is your destination. Your study is your means of transportation. You must realise that the quality of your hearts matter in the quantity of hearts you want to influence in life. The players in life are usually 5% assets. 5% are nothing but liabilities. This is a case of the enlightened and spiritually active and the laggards. Due to spiritual impotence, 90% do ½ of their task on the field, 9% do 95% of their tasks while only 1% does 100%. So, be that one percent. We want to change this world for good. We want to guide people to the right path. We want righteous children to fill the world. We want the future to be bright. We want God-fearing children to become leaders of tomorrow. We can, there is no doubt about it. And you as the young Muslim talents have a lot of roles to play. You are to lead this change. You must rise and live up to expectation. You must desist from wasting your time on sports, films, games and other frivolities. Think of how you will help Islām and people of the world to live in peace and in obedience to their Lord. It is time to work. This is not the moment for you to play.
AS YOU MOVE ON, be definite in outlining your timetable of action. Be sincere in all actions. Purify your body from all physical and spiritual filths. Purify your environment from all social pollutants. Purify your mind from all evil thoughts. Be connected with your base. Be focused in your academics. Purify your heart like a good land for cultivation, and then the truth will grow graciously. Engineer youthful zeal for constant struggle. Islamize your personality.
You are born to be a champion, a leader and an achiever. Do not relent. Keep on moving. Be determined. Be active. Be diligent. Be serious. Be well read. Be firm. Be honest. Be bold. Be articulate. Be disciplined. Be attentive. Be forward looking. Be industrious. Be scholastic.
AS YOU MOVE ON, you must know that it is not a day’s job to obey Allah (SWT). It is a continuous activity. A caricature of it will not produce a true Islamic personality. You must be closer to Allah (SWT) in everything you do. Your academic excellence must engineer the skill in you. It should position you strategically to rescue humanity. Start now to think of where the world will be in a decade’s time. Lunch yourself today with the shuttle of Islāmic way of life. Do know that individual excellences in spirituality, morality and academics will snowball into a communally harmonious peaceful existence.
AS YOU MOVE ON, you should be ready at all times to accept responsibility because you are Allah’s Ambassador. Don’t be slow and sluggish. At this stage of your life, you have the opportunity of your mind and body to learn and do a lot of things. The youthful period is a time when most boys and girls are exuberant and misled. They are easily influenced by their peer groups. The best time in your life is this period. You have no responsibility of taking care of a wife or children. You are a child being fed or taken care of by your parents. You are also agile and mobile. A time will come when you will become old and you will not be able to do most of the things you are doing now.
AS YOU MOVE ON, you should know that greatness starts with diligence. The history of the Prophets and all great men shows that they were all diligent. You start to be diligent by having great love for learning. You must be hungry for knowledge as you are for food. Let thought for learning always be the right thing occupying your mind. Do not allow any other thought apart from the determination to seek for knowledge. This can be at madrasah or the so-called secular schools. Our Precursors in faith have submitted that seeking knowledge is piety, searching for it is devotion, studying it is glorification, research into is Jihad and teaching one who does not know it is sadaqah.
AS YOU MOVE ON, have respect for knowledge process. Control your eating manners. Have a time-table for learning – ‘in your early morning, memorise; at dawn, research; at mid-day, write; at night, study and discuss.
AS YOU MOVE ON, Beware of the dangers of pornography, sports, music, mobile phones, loneliness, temptation of uncultured girls, abandoned boys who sag trousers and the like. Beware of fashion and obsession for new things. Beware of imitation as it could be limitation. Beware of sin as it could sink you. Beware of friends who lure into evils. Beware of distractions while traveling into the great future. Heed this clarion call so that your freedom will not become your doom.
AS YOU MOVE ON, do always speak the truth. Avoid lying whatever the consequence. Associate with the serious Muslims who will not fail to always call you to what is right and prevent you from what is wrong. Be serious about your studies. Devote your time to reading and writing. Do the right thing at the right time. Learn more about Islām. Study the Qur’ān more seriously and memorize most of its chapters. Uphold whatever you have learnt at Islāmic Enlightenment Programmes. Try to purify your soul by always observing your Salāt in congregation. Observe Tahajjud and other Naflahs and fast on Mondays and Thursdays. Put Allah (SWT) first in all your endeavors. Speak the language of Islām. Speak it and get rewards from Allah (SWT). You must improve now. AS YOU MOVE ON, do know that speed has become the rule, time has become scarce and knowledge has become the new currency. Agenda has been set to make the world a global village. The existence of the future is bleak. The past has become the present and the future bartered for the past. Crying only underrate the calamity as blood rather than blood should shed. Knowledge is now sought with money as outputs. Youths have been drowned in the industry of sports, music, dancing and fashion. There is gross unemployment in the industry of academics but rushes abound in sports and music.
My beloved students, this is the time to decide where you want to be and the role you want to play AS YOU MOVED ON. The World is replete with hard lessons and opposing histories. Musolini invaded Libya and wasted innocent lives. Umar Mukhtar rose to defend and rescue his homeland but not without sacrificing his blood. Today, we are witnesses to carnage being perpetrated by Gadaphi. The tragedy of the woe of Pasha Kamal Ataturk in Turkey is in sharp contrast to the solid foundation of Sultan Abdul Hameed and Najmudeen Erbakan in Turkey. Qabil and Habil were coins of different sides. Qudar bn Salif was indeed the worst ringleader when he hamstrung the she camel of Allah. Prophet Ibrahim was firm in his stance against Namruz. Musa led the tyrant Fir‘awn in his waterloo.
AS YOU MOVE ON, do keenly know that adolescence is a delicate and very trying time in your life. This is the time when your life is moulded for good or evil. Do not be influenced by bad and spoilt friends. Keep good companies. Avoid and distance yourself from bad friends. Do not make musicians your models, for life is more serious than to be turned into a music industry. Do not make comedians your model, for agents of change cannot be laughing while humanity is suffering. In this light, I have the following for you as the best models in all aspects of life:
Be like Prophet Yusuf in chastity and specialization. Be like Ashaabul Kahf in steadfastness, faithfulness and sacrifice. Be like Musa in his concern, moral standing, competence and strength. You definitely need the intelligence and bravery of Ibrahiim in surmounting the challenges in your society. Be like Prophet Muhammad (SAW) in good character. Be like Abdullah Ibn Abi Qahafah (Abu Bakr) in truthfulness. Be like Umar Ibn Khattab in justice. Be like Uthman Ibn Affan in Modesty. Be like Ali Ibn Abi Tālib in courage. Be like Abdr-Rahaman Ibn Sakhr (Abu Hurayrah) in memorising the Hadīth. Be like Abdullah Ibn Umar in practising the Sunnah of Prophet Muhammad. Be like Mus‘ab Ibn Umayr in Sacrifice. Be like Abdullah Ibn Abbas in Knowledge and understanding. Be like Ubay Ibn Ka‘b in reciting the Qur’ān. Be like Sumayyah in dying for Islām. Be like Salahudeen al-Ayyuubii in fighting for Aqsā and Muslims in Palestine. Be like Ja‘far Ibn Abi Tālib in power of delivery. Be like Hamza Ibn Abdul Muttalib in boldness. Be like Khalid Ibn Walīd in fighting for Islām. Be like Sayyid Abul A‘la Mawdudi in writing for Islām. Be like Hasan al-Banna in reforming the world. Be like Sheikh Abdr-Rahmān Sudays in reciting the Qur’ān. Be like Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi by being a world-class Scholar.