The Passing of Ali Banat

If you don’t know who Ali Banat is, he was an Aussie Muslim who was diagnosed with cancer. Upon getting his diagnosos he made a complete lifestyle change and began living for charity. Here is his story in his own words. This video is from 2015.

ON Tuesday morning, May 29, 2018, Brother Ali passed away in hospital. 

I didn’t know the brother personally and was only vaguely aware of him through his charity work. I knew he was sick but I didn’t really have any idea about how much he struggled with his illness. Now that he is gone and I am confronted not only with his death but with the good works that he did while battling stage 4 cancer, I am forced to take pause.

I believe that it’s no coincidence that he passed away during Ramadan. I believe that it was a blessing and a mercy to him and a reminder to all of the rest of us to wake up. 

The brother was lucky in that he was forced to confront his mortality and thus gained a new focus on life. He couldn’t go on like many of us, ignoring the reality of our eventual meeting with our Lord. And he packed as much good into the years he had left as he could. He put his affairs in order and began building up the only kind of wealth that can’t be lost, corrupted, or taken away. 

Even in his last moment, he posted on Instagram, asking through signs for everybody to pray for him. He didn’t waste a moment or an opportunity to remind us all that we are all dying and we could all live better. We could all be doing more to make the world a better place. 

More importantly, we could all die today. This could be our last day, our last hour, our last salat, our last moment. He was lucky to know he was dying. We are all so heedless. We are also dying, only we are clueless about the day and time. As his health deteriorated he knew he was getting closer and closer to the day. How many of us will die suddenly, in good health? 

I don’t know what to say about this brother except to say thank you, akhi, for reminding me that tomorrow isn’t promised. Only my good deeds matter. Only the love I share with other human beings matters. Only the faith in my heart matters. This Ramadan could be my last, as it was your last. But if I am granted another, I pray that I don’t forget this reminder and I meet it the way you met your death; still striving, begging for forgiveness and trying to benefit the world.

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