The finite and unpredictable nature of life became obvious once again in the tragic news that emerged from Japan on March 11. A powerful earthquake, currently estimated at 8.9-9.0 on the Richter scale with its epicenter a short distance off Japan's eastern coast, struck the region and generated devastating tsunami waves. The scale of the disaster is just beginning to unfold, as search and rescue teams strive to estimate the damage and save as many lives as possible.
The memory of the Indonesian earthquake in 2004 is still fresh in our minds, when tsunami waves wreaked havoc in many countries and the loss of life and property was colossal. This is one reason why there is an urgency in the effort to generate and mobilize aid, minimizing damage and promote early rehabilitation. Japan's problems are also much compounded by malfunctioning and an explosion at a major nuclear reactor.
You can find out more about the unfolding events on the following links:
- Factbox: Timeline of Japan's unfolding nuclear crisis
- Japan's Crisis: Eyewitness Stories
- Japan Quake: Red Cross Shares How to Help Victims
- Google helps share info on Japan quake
- Map: Impact of Japan tsunami and earthquake
While it is most important to focus on helping the people in need at this time, we should also pause a moment to think about the lessons that emerge from such tragic incidents, as well as make du‘ā’ for the survivors. For me, watching the video of tsunami waves lashing the shores and water making its way deep inland, destroying everything that came it came across, brought on the realization that you can never assume you're all secure from Allāh(swt)'s Plan. Instead, we need to realize and fully appreciate His Might, submit to Him, seek forgiveness for the wrongs we have done and hope for the best from Him.
Sheikh AbdulNasir Jangda also spoke on this recently.
What lessons have you learned? How has news of the quake and tsunami affected you? Share here, as well as any other way you know to help the victims.