The first fossils of modern cockroaches with internal ovipositors appear approximately during the Cretaceous period which refers to the age following Jurassic, more than 300 million years ago. The term modern cockroach is used because the fossils are similar in nature to cockroaches we see today. Ancestors of these cockroaches survived extinction events of this world, just to pest around scavenging waste disposals? Well, that doesn’t sound too smart of a reason for the Creator of this annoying creature.
ALLAH s.w.t recorded in Surah Ali Imran : Verse 191,
“Men who celebrate the praises of Allah, standing, sitting, and lying down on their sides, and contemplate the (wonders of) creation in the heavens and the earth, (With the thought): Our Lord! not for naught Hast Thou created (all) this! Glory to Thee! Give us salvation from the penalty of the Fire”.If it’s “not for naught” then the cockroaches too must have its own wisdom of creation. According to the same Qur’anic verse upon wisdom of mankind, we should contemplate!
Throughout the history of mankind, ALLAH s.w.t has sent countless reminders and guidance to be followed by human through HIS messengers. Yet again, repeatedly mankind transgressed from ALLAH’s Divine truth. In some cases, even the Prophets were murdered. How does that behavioral pattern of human can be related to cockroaches? Actually it’s obvious that within due process of deviating mankind from ALLAH’s path, there’s always a group of human who acted like roaches.
Basically, cockroaches dislike bright light. That’s a good premise to start. Naturally human relate light to knowledge and goodness as opposed to darkness commonly associated with ignorance and evil. In line with ALLAH’s reminder towards religious hypocrites in Surah AlBaqarah : Verse 17,
“Their similitude is that of a man who kindled a fire; when it lighted all around him, Allah took away their light and left them in utter darkness. So they could not see”.
Now, let’s contemplate on the similar attitude of those responsible in deviating mankind from ALLAH’s Divine Guidance. They disliked the truth of ALLAH and chose to inhabit their hearts with darkness by worshipping idols and false gods. It’s a choice back then, and still an opportunity to choose today, LIGHT or DARKNESS. Cockroaches remain loyal to darkness; hence the equation upon mankind who chose darkness and evil over light (Guidance) and knowledge is equivalent to cockroach.
At home, if it is infested with cockroaches, we don’t really see all of them at once. Even at night we can see these roaches run as they might every time the light is switched on. When the lights are off, they reappear and roam the space. Similar to religious hypocrites and deviators throughout history who acted like cockroach to mankind. ALLAH said,
“In their hearts is a disease; and Allah has increased their disease: And grievous is the penalty they (incur), because they are false (to themselves)”AlBaqarah:10
Such disease of the hearts has hardened and sealed it from accepting TRUTH. To make it worse, those with hardened hearts are not only disliking truth but persistently fight back with lies, deceit, slander and dirty means as long as their likings are achieved. In today's world of communication without boundaries, it's becoming more rampant for us to notice this kind of people behaving just like the roaches despising the light. Perhaps the cockroach is more cultured in this sense as they can't fight the light.
Let’s move on to the next attitudinal similarity. Research has shown that group-based decision-making is responsible for complex behavior such as resource allocation. In a study where 50 cockroaches were placed in a dish with three shelters with a capacity for 40 insects in each, the insects arranged themselves in two shelters with 25 insects in each, leaving the third shelter empty. When the capacity of the shelters was increased to more than 50 insects per shelter, all of the cockroaches arranged themselves in one shelter.
Just like religious deviators, often they group themselves in clusters until such time the can merge together in darkness and evil. Based on the research findings over cockroaches’ behavior, it’s fair to assume that the “human cockroaches” are being natural. Although communal by nature for the sake of survival, their higher character altogether is still ignorance. ALLAH said in AlBaqarah : 101,
“And when there came to them an apostle from Allah, confirming what was with them, a party of the people of the Book threw away the Book of Allah behind their backs, as if (it had been something) they did not know!”
Moving on to how similar they feed themselves. Mutually it is understood between cockroaches and mankind that whatever belongs to humans but edible to cockroaches can be assumed as belongs to the roaches. Obviously none of the human likes this notion but we simply can’t choose another option. Does that sound similar to capitalistic ideas of imposing something for everybody to heed in a system? If human is still human in this sense, the human cockroach clan that sticks together plotting how to scavenge other human possessions would be obvious.
It’s not about which house they occupy. It’s just bigger than that. One house having cockroach problem will affect the nearest neighbors. Similarly, the human cockroach can be in different countries, possessing the same twisted minds to deviate other humans. For roaches, each and every one thinks for itself. Cockroaches are selfishly communal, unlike ants or bees who work for their colony; they just stick together for breeding purpose. Again, this sounds very familiar with the so called individualistic metropolitan values right? Or is it called hedonist? Or perhaps very much closer to a racial political national organization in 1 constitutional democratic nation per se?
There’s a popular saying that goes, if you see a roach, there are at least 99 more that you didn’t see. Needless to elaborate on it we can rationalize how human cockroach clan sucks out other people’s wealth through their implicit business circles. One human cockroach minister in a corrupted system might entails about the same amount of unseen roaches comprised of human cockroach businessmen. Since roaches never care what it leaves behind that can cause humans to ache or suffer, the human cockroaches also acted the same.
How do we get rid of cockroaches? There’s no absolute answer to total elimination as roaches have proved their existence throughout history of this earth. Similarly human cockroach will prevail. ALLAH said,
“Mischief has appeared on land and sea because of (the meed) that the hands of men have earned, that ((Allah)) may give them a taste of some of their deeds: in order that they may turn back (from Evil)”Surah ArRuum:21
Hence, despite our effort to clean up our living system until it is ‘purified’ or in Malay we call it ‘BERSIH’, they will always be there. Their existence prevails as a continuous check-and-balance element.
Cleaning up is everybody’s responsibility although we can’t get rid of these pests totally. Rejecting human cockroach clan to continue doing what they do is also our shared responsibility. Cockroaches will survive but as human, we shouldn’t let it happen in our homes. Whether that roaches eat up our belongings or our religious peace of mind, both the human cockroach clan and the real cockroach should be kept away from our lives as Muslim. Wallahu a’lam.
By: Towil SeeSharpMinor