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How to achieve tranquility of the heart?

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  • RaNdOm
    replied
    Re: How to achieve tranquility of the heart?

    Asalaamu alaikum

    Last article in the series...

    Part 20 :love:

    Loving Allah swt - the greatest aspiration

    Finally we come to the crux of the matter and what should be the pinnacle of our aspirations: Loving Allah. We need to put this love into perspective—why should we love Allah (swt) more than anything else? How can we do that? How do we know if we love Allah (swt)? What will this love give us?
    What do people love?

    It is probably impossible to find a human being who does not love. Most people love their families, spouses and friends. Others love status and money. You can tell a person’s love for something or someone by what they do and how they act.

    And we love all of these things despite their temporary nature, despite the fact that they disappoint us sometimes. It is almost an intrinsic part of a human being. And we all love for similar reasons—we love people for the perceived good qualities that we see in a person or the way they treat us. We love things because of the way those things make us feel.

    Why should we love Allah (swt)?
    How can we not? If we put together all the reasons why we love other people or things, and then apply it to Allah (swt), we should see that truly it is Him that deserves our love. And because human beings are naturally inclined to love, it is only the love of Allah (swt) that can satisfy this need. Ibn Taymiyyah radi allah `anhu (may God be pleased with him) said: “The heart will not find complete happiness except by loving Allah and by striving towards what is dear to Him.”

    Amongst the things to aspire to when striving for tranquility of the heart, loving Allah (swt) above all else is the greatest. When we direct our love and our emotions towards Allah (swt), everything else follows. Our actions follow because they reflect what is in our heart. It is liberating because our love is directed at the source of all our blessings, not merely the means. We see everything as coming from Allah (swt), and because we love Him and think well of Him, we know that everything is for a purpose.

    The first thing the Prophet :saw: (peace be upon him) said to the people of Madina was “O people! Love Allah with all of your hearts for what He has given you from blessings…” Allah (swt) says in the Qur’an: “And if you should count the favor of Allah, you could not enumerate them.” [14:34]

    Try to count everything good in your life, and everything that seemed bad but turned out to be good. All that is from Allah (swt). The fact that you are Muslim. The fact that, as the Prophet :saw: told us, everything that happens in the life of a Muslim is good, and this is only for the believers. If you are given blessings, then it is an opportunity to be thankful, and if you are tested, it is for you to be patient. And what is amazing is that we have been guaranteed things for patience in the face of calamity, and we know that nothing will go to waste insha` Allah (God willing).

    If we find that we don’t love Allah (swt), it is because we don’t know Him. All the pleasures of the world are not an ounce of what the pleasure of what Allah (swt) has prepared in jannah (paradise), and the greatest pleasure is to see Him and be with Him.

    Are we true in our love for Allah (swt)?
    Many of us would say without hesitation that we love Allah (swt). But there are different levels of love. Some of us may love our parents more than our siblings. We love all of them, but our love for our parents is over and above the love for our siblings. Yet the love that will give us true tranquility in our hearts is the love that prefers Allah (swt) over all else. Allah (swt) tells us in the Qur’an:

    “Say, [O Muhammad], “If your fathers, your sons, your brothers, your wives, your relatives, wealth which you have obtained, commerce wherein you fear decline, and dwellings with which you are pleased are more beloved to you than Allah and His Messenger and jihad [struggle] in His cause, then wait until Allah executes His command. And Allah does not guide the defiantly disobedient people.” [9:24]

    Allah in this verse is not telling us we should not love. On the contrary, Allah (swt) tells us in another verse that He has made between spouses “love and mercy”. We are encouraged to love each other. The Prophet :saw: told us, “When one of you has love for his brother, he should inform him that he loves him,” [Bukhari].

    But we should not love them more than Allah (swt), because love tends to mean preference. We do things for our loved ones because we know that they will like it or appreciate it. And when we prefer others over Allah (swt), or make them equal to Allah (swt), that is when we find difficulty because we are putting our hope in something finite and fallible. Allah (swt) says in the Qur’an:

    “And [yet], among the people are those who take other than Allah as equals [to Him]. They love them as they [should] love Allah. But those who believe are stronger in love for Allah [...]” [2:165].

    This doesn’t mean we won’t make mistakes. We will, because the children of Adam constantly make mistakes. And sometimes we will choose things over Allah (swt). The key is to seek forgiveness. The key is to realize and work on improving. It is that act that is so beloved to Allah (swt).

    There are some ways for us to know if we truly love Allah (swt). We are told in the Qur’an:

    “Say, [O Muhammad], “If you should love Allah , then follow me, [so] Allah will love you and forgive you your sins. And Allah is Forgiving and Merciful.” [Qur'an 3:31]

    We know that the Prophet :saw: is the best example and he is the beloved of Allah (swt). How far do we follow the Prophet :saw:? And we shouldn’t only think of the outward things, such as the way he dressed or growing a beard. Rather we should look atwho the Prophet :saw: was, what was the essence of his character and how he treated people. Once the love for Allah (swt) and His Messenger grows, we will want to follow everything.

    Another way to test ourselves is to look at all of the different types of people that Allah (swt) loves in the Qur’an—for example, Allah (swt) says that He loves the patient. Then we should ask ourselves—Do we strive to be that person to receive the love of Allah (swt)?

    Sweetness of Faith
    Moreover, if we find that Islam is difficult, know that loving Allah (swt) is the key to tasting the sweetness of faith. The Prophet :saw: told us, “There are three things which if a person finds them, he has found the sweetness of faith: when Allah and His Messenger are dearer to him than all else; when he loves a person for no other reason than for the sake of Allah; and when he hates to return to kufr after Allah has saved him from it as he would hate to be thrown into fire,” [Bukhari].

    How can I make my heart love Allah (swt)?
    • Read the Qur’an with reflection;
    • Perform more nawaafil (voluntary acts of worship): “Nothing endears My servant to Me than doing of what I have made obligatory upon him to do. And My servant continues to draw nearer to Me with the supererogatory [nawaafil]so that I shall love him.” [Bukhari]
    • Always remember Allah (swt): The righteous used to say that if you awake and sleep remembering Allah (swt), then you awake and sleep without a sin. Not that we will not make mistakes, but sins are erased by constantdhikr; (remembrance of Allah, swt) and good deeds, insha’Allah.
    • Choose what Allah (swt) prefers over what you prefer.

    This is the last article in this series, and I pray we have all benefited. May Allah (swt) enable us to find tranquility through loving Him. Ameen.

    Leave a comment:


  • {f~h}
    replied
    Re: How to achieve tranquility of the heart?

    Originally posted by RaNdOm View Post
    Lol aw but it's not meee u need to thank, it just made me feel so :inlove: when I read it that I just wanted everyone else to feel the same way and he fact that u feel like that makes me feel so happy mashaAllah :love: I'm a natural worrier which means I have to read these over n over and everytime I do it's a different piece of the article that touches my heart :)
    Oh doesn't matter...sharing is caring, may Allah swt reward you for your good work, Ameen! :)

    Yeah it's great to try quickly read these articles on daily basis...yeah I get a spiritual boost also Alhamdullilah!...We humans can't remember or recall everything we have learnt so yeah we have to keep reading certain articles over and over again!...and we tend to read articles we love numerous times just because we love them LoL!

    Oh this thread should be made a sticky or moved to poetry section...so it doesn't get hidden by other less useful (to put it nicely :)) threads!!

    :jkk: Sister! <3

    Leave a comment:


  • RaNdOm
    replied
    Re: How to achieve tranquility of the heart?

    Asalaamu alaikum

    Part 19 :love:

    Contentment, A paradise on earth


    As we mentioned in previous articles, worship can be divided into two categories: the worship of the heart and worship of the limbs. The worship of the heart can be dearer to Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala(glorified is He) because they give meaning to the worship of the limbs.


    Ridaa (contentment with the decree of Allah) is one of the acts of worship of the heart. Ibn Taymiyyah said about contentment:


    “Contentment is the greatest door that one enters to Allah, it is the source of tranquility for the worshiper and paradise on earth. Whoever does not enter it will not enter the Paradise in the Hereafter.”


    Are you content with the actions of Allah?
    One way whether to know whether we haveridaa is to ask ourselves if we have bitterness in our hearts when we are tested or when things don’t go our way.


    It does not mean that we shouldn’t be ambitious or have big goals. We should work hard, and when we fall, we should pick ourselves back up and try to work harder or find alternatives. It does not mean to stop when difficulties come – but for example, if there is someone we want to marry and they marry someone else, then that is the end of the matter. Or if we are after a certain job and it goes to someone else, then it was not written for us at that time. It may mean we should apply at another time, or for another job – only Allah knows. But the point of contentment is that we do not have resentment in our hearts. For example, if we are doing all of our acts of worship and are generally good Muslims, yet we are faced with calamity or we feel that our du`a’ (supplication) has not been responded to, we do not harbor anger in our hearts: “I did everything, but Allah did not give me what I want!”


    How to achieve contentment?
    The Prophet :saw: (may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, “He has tasted the sweetness of faith: he who is content with Allah as his Lord, Islam as his religion, and Muhammad :saw: as his Prophet.” (Muslim)


    We need to know first and foremost that Allah (swt) has portioned for us our provision. As long as we work, we will get what is written for us. Moreover, the Prophet :saw: said: “Know that even if the whole community were to gather together to benefit you with something, they would not benefit you with anything except that which Allah has already recorded for you, and that if they gather together to harm you with something, they would not be able to harm you with anything except that which Allah has already recorded against you.” (Tirmidhi)


    Simply possessing this knowledge should empower us, because we know that everything that happens is by the permission of Allah (swt). This should not prevent us from reflecting and trying to figure out how our actions played a role, but learning from an experience is also part of contentment because you trust that Allah (swt) is teaching you a lesson through trial.


    The Prophet :saw: reminds us of something profound, “Whoever wakes up safely in his home and is healthy in his body and has provisions for his day, would have acquired all the worldly possessions he is in need of.” (Tirmidhi)


    Subhan’Allah (glory to God) – none of know when our last day could be. But if we wake up in the morning with those three things, then we have all that we need. We should not look at people and question why Allah (swt) has given certain people success over ourselves. We have all that we need.


    Du`a’ for contentment
    The Prophet :saw: said: “There is no Muslim servant who says in the morning and the evening three times: I am pleased with Allah as my Lord, with Islam as my religion and with Muhammad :saw: as my Prophet, except that it will be a right upon Allah to please him on the Day of Judgment.” (Ahmad)


    The Prophet :saw: also said “Whoever says when he hears the caller to prayer: ‘And I bear witness that there is no God save Allah, He is alone and has no partner and I bear witness that Muhammad is His servant and messenger. I am pleased with Allah as Lord, Muhammad as Prophet and Islam as religion’ all his sins will be forgiven.” (Muslim)


    It is as though we are told to say these statements so that they may enter our hearts.
    The Prophet :saw: would also make this du`a’: “O Allah, make me content with Your decree, so that I may not hasten what You have delayed, or to delay what You have hastened.”

    How do you know if you have ridaa?


    You have ridaa if:
    1. You pray istikhara when you have a decision to make. The du`a’ of istikhara literally asks Allah (swt) to choose what is best for us.
    2. You have no resentment after something has been decreed by saying Alhamdulillah (all praise is due to Allah).
    3. Your love for Allah does not decrease when you are tested

    Examples of those who were content with the decree of Allah
    Imagine the devastation of the Prophet :saw: when he lost his son Ibrahim. He was around 60 years old when he had him, and he was so happy that he would take Ibrahim to companions just so they could see him. When he passed away the Prophet :saw: wept. But what did he say? “The eyes shed tears and the heart is saddened, but we do not say anything except that which pleases our Lord. Indeed, O Ibrahim, we are bereaved by your departure from us.”


    This teaches us that being content with Allah (swt) does not mean that we cannot feel sad or disappointed; but we carry no anger or resentment towards Allah.


    Whenever ‘Umar radi Allahu anhu (may Allah be please with him) was stricken with calamity, he would thank Allah for four things:
    1. That the test was not in his religion;
    2. That the test was not greater than it was;
    3. That if he responded to the test with patience, he would be given an immeasurable reward;
    4. That he would remember the greater calamity of losing the Prophet:saw:.

    Then he would say “I do not care what happens to me as long as I am Muslim.”
    A final example is the companions ‘Umran bin Hussayn (ra). He was one of the companions who took part in the battles with the Prophet:saw: and was a fierce fighter. However, he got paralyzed from the waist down for thirty years until he passed away. Some of the other companions saw him and cried – because they knew what he used to be. But he replied to them, saying: “You cry, but I am content. I love what Allah loves, and I am content with what Allah is content with, and I am happy with what Allah chooses. I remain in this state and by Allah I can feel the Angels around me glorifying Allah. Allah is testing my contentment with Him, so bear witness that I am content.” When I read this story, I was reminded of the film “Million Dollar Baby.” The boxer had risen to stardom but was paralyzed after her opponent knocked her out after she won the match, breaking her neck. After that, she lost the will to live – she did not want to live in that state after all she had achieved. But the example of ‘Umran is inspiring, because he knew that nothing was outside the realm of Allah’s Power, Knowledge and Mercy, and if this is what Allah decreed, then he was content.


    May Allah (swt) give us a heart filled with contentment.

    Leave a comment:


  • Dhurrah
    replied
    Re: How to achieve tranquility of the heart?

    SubhanAllah. Beautiful words.

    Ikhlaas is usually there when praises and criticisms mean the same thing to you (i.e. you feel no different towards either).

    Leave a comment:


  • RaNdOm
    replied
    Re: How to achieve tranquility of the heart?

    Asalaamu alaikum

    Part 18 :love:

    The key to your station with Allah is ikhlas.



    There is a frightening hadith about a scholar, a martyr and a charitable man on the Day of Judgment. They all expect to enter Paradise because of their good deeds. Instead, they are sent to the Fire, because their deeds were done with the intention of pleasing people – not pleasing Allah. They wanted people to see them as they were doing good because they wanted people’s praise.

    What is Ikhlas?
    Ikhlas is to do everything, internal and external, only desiring the pleasure of Allah. It is to forget the eyes of the people, and whether they view your deeds or not, with the only thing on your mind that Allah is watching you. There are beautiful verses in the Qur’an in this regard, where Allah describes the Abraar in Jannah:



    “They [are those who] fulfill [their] vows and fear a Day whose evil will be widespread. And they give food in spite of love for it to the needy, the orphan, and the captive, [saying], “We feed you only for the countenance of Allah. We wish not from you reward or gratitude.” (Qur’an, 76:7-9)

    Imam al-Ghazali said that if you want to know whether something you did was purely for the sake of Allah or not, you should test your reaction when someone acts ungratefully. Do you feel self-righteous, like you were doing the person a favor? Do you feel angry that they did not appreciate your work? It may not mean that your act was ostentatious, but it points to the fact that it was not solely for the sake of Allah. We were expecting, at the very least, recognition and respect from the person as a result of the good we did to them.


    We all know the famous story of the prostitute who was rewarded with Paradise for giving a dog water – but what truly got her into Paradise? Was it just that simple act? It could not have been, because as we mentioned above, there are scholars, martyrs and charitable people who will be thrown in hell because they were insincere. But she was helping the dog for Allah only. Look at how your intention elevates your deeds. This is why the scholars have said that it is the most important act of worship of the heart – to have the driving force of your acts be to please Allah.


    This is closely linked to ihsan – that you are worshipping Allah as though you see Him and you know that He sees you.


    Khurram Murad states that “purpose and intention are like the soul of a body or the inner capability of a seed. Many seeds look alike, but as they begin to grow and bear fruit, their differences become manifest. The purer and higher the motive, the greater the value and yield of your efforts.”1


    Ikhlas is the foundation of any work that we do – if the foundation is corrupt, then the building can easily be broken.


    Does this only apply to specific acts of worship or can it also apply to regular habits?
    Allah (swt) says in the Qur’an:



    “Say, “Indeed, my prayer, my rites of sacrifice, my living and my dying are for Allah, Lord of the worlds.” (6:162)

    This verse tells us that everything can be for the sake of Allah. Moreover, Khurram Murad reminds us of something crucial. He states,

    “People are in the habit of classifying life’s activities into those which are mundane and those which are religious. Remember, though, only those things done for the sake of Allah are the ‘religious’ things. Everything that is done for other than Allah – however ‘religious’ it may seem – is a worldly act… If he earns thousands of pounds to support his family and to spend for the cause of Allah, seeking only Allah’s pleasure, it is a highly spiritual act.”


    Even your sleep can be for Allah; if you say you will sleep at a certain hour so you can wake up for Fajr, then your sleep is for Allah. Imagine being rewarded for 6-8 hours of sleep!
    Importance of Ikhlas


    Allah (swt) says in the Qur’an:




    “And they were not commanded except to worship Allah, [being] sincere to Him in religion, inclining to truth…” (Qur’an, 98:5)

    If we look at the story of Yusuf (as), it wasikhlas that saved him. Allah describes him in Surat Yusuf:



    “And she certainly determined [to seduce] him, and he would have inclined to her had he not seen the proof of his Lord. And thus [it was] that We should avert from him evil and immorality, for he was one of Our servants, sincere and purified.” (Qur’an,12:24)

    Subhan’Allah. And moreover, Satan can get to all humans except those who have ikhlas. In the Qur’an, Allah tells us:


    “[Satan] said, “My Lord, because You have put me in error, I will surely make [disobedience] attractive to them on earth, and I will mislead them all. Except among them Your sincere servants.” (Qur’an,15:39-40)This should remind us of what the Prophet :saw: said about ‘Umar: Satan would avoid the path that ‘Umar was on because he was afraid of him. Imagine being at that level!


    The more complete the ikhlas becomes, the more the person is upright. We are prone to making mistakes, and we may find that sometimes our intentions are mixed; sometimes there may not be an apparent intention behind whatever act we are doing. That is why we need to aspire to be of the sincere. As long as we are constantly reminding ourselves of doing things for Allah, He will even reward us for thatinsha’Allah.
    We should not despair and be paranoid. It is narrated by ‘Amr bin al-Aas, that the Prophet :saw: said “A person from my Ummah will be summoned in the presence of all creatures on the Day of Judgment. Ninety-nine records (of his deeds) would be unfolded, each extending as far as the eye can see; then he would be asked: ‘Do you deny any of these deeds?’ He will reply: ‘No, My Lord.’ He will be asked: ‘Do you have any excuse or any good deed?’ The man will say: ‘No.’ It will be said to him: ‘Yes you have some good deeds. No iniquity will befall you.’ A card will then be shown to him. On it will be written: ‘La ilaaha ila Allah, Muhammad Rasul Allah.’ He will say: ‘O Allah! What cards and records are these?’ It will be said to him: ‘No injustice shall befall you.’ The (ninety-nine) records will then be placed in one pan of the scale and the card on the other. The card will then outweigh the records.” [Tirmidhi]


    This is due to his sincerity with la ilaaha ila Allah – there is no deity other than Allah.


    Secrets of Ikhlas
    Ikhlas is something that Allah puts in the heart of worshipers who seek it. Sheikh Omar AbdelKafy said that there are 3 secrets of Ikhlas:
    1. The servant who has ikhlas does not look at it, because that would make him arrogant. For example, if we pray in a small room where no one can see us and yet due to that we feel that we are better than others because ‘obviously’ have ikhlas, we fall into the trap of arrogance. At the end of the day, success is only from Allah.
    2. Ikhlas is between the servant and His Lord; even the Angels don’t write it down because they don’t know it. Reflective of this is the story of the martyr, scholar and charitable man that we mentioned above – the Angels had written down the good they did, but it was Allah who exposed their intention.
    3. Satan cannot get to you if you have ikhlas

    Examples of those with Ikhlas
    There is a beautiful example in the mother of Mariam (as). “When the wife of ‘Imran said, “My Lord, indeed I have pledged to You what is in my womb, consecrated [for Your service], so accept this from me. Indeed, You are the Hearing, the Knowing” (Qur’an,3:35). She was having a beautiful private conversation with Allah. She told Him the child that was in her womb was solely for Him. She would raise it in the way of Allah, so that the child would be a worshipper of Allah, not for any reason save His pleasure. And for that sincere conversation, Allah rewarded her with one of the best women: Mariam (as), who fulfilled her mother’s pledge, by the grace of Allah.


    Another example is Khalid bin al-Walid (ra). He was removed from his post as commander of the army by ‘Umar. Imagine being the head of a youth group, captain of a sports team, or a manager at a company. Suddenly there is a change of management – you are removed from your position and demoted to a regular team member or employee. How would you react? How would that affect your work? Instead of being offended and refusing to fight, Khalid fought with even more vigor. When he was asked why, he said: “I fight for Allah and not for Umar.” He wanted to ensure that he was not working hard because he was put in a specific position – rather wherever he was, he would work hard for the sake of Allah.
    May Allah help us attain ikhlas.



    1. In the Early Hours, p. 63.
    2. See Qur’an 15:40

    Leave a comment:


  • RaNdOm
    replied
    Re: How to achieve tranquility of the heart?

    Originally posted by {f~h} View Post
    OMG..sister Random...I think I have fallen in :love: with you!!...don't worry I'm a sis obviously! :p

    Thank you soooooooo much for this thread...I can't put into words how much I :love: this thread! All your posts are so amazing MashaAllah!...Keep up the good work! :up:

    :love: :jkk: :love:
    Lol aw but it's not meee u need to thank, it just made me feel so :inlove: when I read it that I just wanted everyone else to feel the same way and he fact that u feel like that makes me feel so happy mashaAllah :love: I'm a natural worrier which means I have to read these over n over and everytime I do it's a different piece of the article that touches my heart :)

    Leave a comment:


  • Dhurrah
    replied
    Re: How to achieve tranquility of the heart?

    Originally posted by {f~h} View Post
    All your posts are so amazing MashaAllah!...Keep up the good work! :up:
    They are. MashaAllah.

    :jkk: sister.

    Leave a comment:


  • {f~h}
    replied
    Re: How to achieve tranquility of the heart?

    OMG..sister Random...I think I have fallen in :love: with you!!...don't worry I'm a sis obviously! :p

    Thank you soooooooo much for this thread...I can't put into words how much I :love: this thread! All your posts are so amazing MashaAllah!...Keep up the good work! :up:

    :love: :jkk: :love:

    Leave a comment:


  • RaNdOm
    replied
    Re: How to achieve tranquility of the heart?

    Originally posted by Jenicca View Post
    This is a fantastic thread sister :love:

    :jkk:
    BarakAllah feek

    I know mashaAllah makes me feel :love: :love: :love: whenever I read it :)

    Leave a comment:


  • RaNdOm
    replied
    Re: How to achieve tranquility of the heart?

    Part 17 :love:

    Allah is with the patient




    “O you who have believed, seek help through patience and prayer. Indeed, Allah is with the patient.” (Qur’an, 2:153)

    In this stage of seeking tranquility of the heart, we will be building upon the verse the above. When we talked about things we need to know – such as thinking well of Allah and trying to understand tests, as well as things to do – such as connecting to Allah through our salah, making du`a’ – some comments that were received were along the lines of “I’ve already done that. But it doesn’t seem to be working.” No doubt, knowing we will face tests and trying to understand the reason behind them is crucial, because it enables us not to feel hopeless. However, difficulties sometimes make it hard for us to continue with the practice of doing things that get us close to Allah. So we must seek help not only in prayer, but in aspiring to be of the patient.


    Patience – an Aspiration?
    The Prophet :saw: said that patience is a light (Muslim). The characteristic of light is that it shows us the way and allows us to see clearly. How does patience do this? Patience is linked with hope and trust in Allah. When something bad happens, we can force ourselves to be patient by reminding ourselves that with hardship comes ease and that after a period of hardship Allah gives relief. We can only be truly patient when we realize that everything is from Allah, and that is how everything is illuminated. It is the opposite of darkness and impatience. Impatience is darkness because it frustrates us, we can behave rashly and we do not see the wisdom in the delay. The Prophet :saw: said “And whoever remains patient, Allah will make him patient. Nobody can be given a blessing better and greater than patience.” (Bukhari)


    Patience is an aspiration because it is not just something that we do, but rather something that we need to build in ourselves and adapt to different situations. Its importance is highlighted in the fact that it has been mentioned in the Qur’an over ninety times. We all know that nothing in the Qur’an is without purpose, so reflect on the fact that Allah is reminding us of this characteristic numerous times. Ali (ra) said, “Patience’s position to faith is similar to the position of the head to the body. If the head is cut off, the body dies.” Then he raised his voice saying, “There is no faith, for a person who doesn’t have patience.”


    It won’t come easily, because we are humans and get tired. This shouldn’t be a cause for despair, because with hardship comes ease. At the same time, being of the patient is what we aspire to, because when we do reach that level, Allah is with us. What does Allah being with us mean? Imam ash-Shawkanitalks about this and he says Allah can be with us in a general sense (as He is with all human beings) and in a specific sense, which entails a higher level of care and love for those whom He is with. So when we read “Allah is with the patient,” know that when you embody the characteristic of patience, Allah is taking care of you in ways that you cannot even imagine, and that He is with you every step of the way.


    Why should I aspire to be of the patient? It’s just too hard!


    Allah says in the Qur’an: “Indeed, the patient will be given their reward without account.” (Qur’an, 39:10)

    Subhan’Allah, at-Tabari states that you will be given your reward without having to go through the meezan (scale) that other people will. Imagine! Another interpretation is that the reward you will be given is one without measure – only Allah knows the greatness of the reward for those who are patient.


    Allah (swt) also says, “And Allah loves the steadfast.” (Qur’an, 3:146) Remember how we said Allah treats those He loves? Because He is al-Wadud, Allah’s Love is not silent; it will be manifested. Not only will Allah love you, but He will show you that love.


    Moreover, the Prophet:saw: said, “There is no Muslim who is stricken with a calamity and says what Allah has enjoined – ‘Verily to Allah we belong and unto Him is our return. O Allah, reward me for my affliction and compensate me with something better’ – but Allah will compensate him with something better.” (Muslim) Recall the story of Um Salamah, who was so grief-stricken when her husband was killed. The Prophet :saw: taught her these words and she said “Who could be better than Abu Salamah?” So Allah gave her the Prophet :saw:

    Does patience mean I just have to wait around?


    Sometimes we think being patient means doing nothing. Someone tells us “be patient!” and we say “give me something practical to do!” but if patience was not practical, Allah would not have told this to all of the Prophets (as) in the Qur’an. We just need to understand what patience really is.


    Firstly, we need to know that there are different kinds of patience:


    Patience with Doing Good
    This means perseverance. The Prophet :saw: told us “Know that with patience comes victory” (Tirmidhi). Does this mean victory comes by sitting and waiting for it? Of course not. The sunnah of the Prophet:saw: shows us that this is not the case, because he strived to do good, and as he persevered (i.e. he was not impatient in the sense that he expected the result to be immediate) Allah gave him victory. Patiently persevering in doing good takes many forms: it can be anything that is praiseworthy in the religion – whether it is acts of worship, our relationships with people, etc. It is sometimes tempting to return like with like. If someone is rude to us, let’s try to be like Allah’s Name As-Saboor (The Patient). Despite all the wrong that we commit, He is patient with us and does not punish us immediately. If we appreciate this patience from Allah, should we not try to have the same kind of patience with people?


    Allah (swt) wants us to strive for this kind of patience. For example, with the issue ofqiyam al-layl (the night prayer), the Prophet :saw: has told us, “Whoever goes to his bed intending to get up and pray at night, then his eyes overwhelm him and (he sleeps) until morning, the (reward of) that which he intended will be written for him, and his sleep is a charity for him given by his Lord.” (An-nasai, Ibn Majah) Why did the Prophet:saw: tell us this? So that we never give up; we are patient with our weaknesses and continue to strive. This is what patience is.


    Patience with Stopping Ourselves from Doing Bad
    One of the types of people who is given shade on the Day of Judgment is the person who is tempted into fornication but resists and says “I fear Allah!” (Bukhari) It is much easier to fall into sin. But one who constantly prevents himself from doing bad, can be of the people who is beneath the shade of Allah. This requires patience and conviction; despite the hardship, we are doing something that is beloved to Allah. Nowadays we are taught to strive to achieve what we want no matter what. Although having ambition and drive is good, it should not be by compromising our ethics. We may have to face setbacks now and then, but when we remember that our aim is for theakhira and not simply the dunya, patience is easier to inculcate.


    Patience when Something Bad Happens
    The Prophet ﷺ taught us that “patience is at the first stroke of a calamity.” (Bukhari) It is not easy to bear bad news and not lose it or break down. It is even harder to prevent ourselves from questioning something that is so, in our eyes, blatantly bad. Why? But as we said before, there is a reason for tests. This is why we are taught in the Qur’an to say “To Allah we belong and to Him we return” so that when are afflicted, we remember that nothing is outside the realm of Allah’s knowledge, power and mercy. He knows this is happening, and there is a higher purpose to it.

    Examples of Those Who are Patient
    The Prophet :saw: is the best example. Despite being exiled from his home, losing his loved ones, being abused and suffering near starvation, he never wavered in his character. He was patient in doing good, patient in refraining from evil even when he was tempted with wealth and women, and he was patient when afflicted with calamity. All of his children died in his lifetime except Fatima (ra). He lost his wife and two of his uncles whom he loved dearly. Those who followed him were tortured. Yet he persisted in praying in the night, was described as always smiling and never hesitated to help people. His patience was in perseverance and never questioning the will of Allah.


    Look at Prophet Ayyoub (as), who was not only patient with his affliction but he was content! He lost all fourteen of his children, his wealth and the companionship of the people because of his disease. Yet when he was asked to supplicate for Allah to heal him, he said “Allah gave me 50 years of blessings, should I not be patient with the same number of years of hardship?” He never complained of his illness. Of course, we should always ask Allah to help us (and Ayyoub (as) finally did) but what we should take from this is he wasn’t angry with Allah and never questioned His will.


    Finally, ‘Urwah ibn al-Zubair (ra), one of the companions, had to have his leg amputated. While he was being visited by a friend, he said, “If you came to give me condolence for the loss of my leg, I already submitted to Allah with patience to reward me for its loss.” But the guest told him, “I came to inform you that your son fell down in a stable, and the animal stepped over him, and he passed away.” What would be the response of ‘Urwa of that moment? He said: “O Allah! You took one child, and left me many…You took one organ from my body, and left me many organs…O Allah! You tested me with my body, and you were kind to leave me with good health. You tested me with the loss of my son, but you were kind in leaving me the rest of my children.” Subhan’Allah. May we all be of the patient!

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  • Jenicca
    replied
    Re: How to achieve tranquility of the heart?

    This is a fantastic thread sister :love:

    :jkk:

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  • RaNdOm
    replied
    Re: How to achieve tranquility of the heart?

    Asalaamu alaikum

    Part 16 :love:

    To become Allah swt Wali


    Today we will move on to a new section: the things we should aspire to. In our journey, what we have tried to do is change the way we think about Allah and our relationship with Him. We started with things that we need to know, and moved on to the things that we have to do. Once we achieve those, we need a goal to aspire to so that we do not become complacent.

    “I want to be of those who are close to Allah“. Imagine being like Ibn Taymiyyah, who stated, “What can my enemies do to me? I have in my breast both my heaven and my garden. If I travel they are with me, never leaving me. Imprisonment for me is a chance to be alone with my Lord. To be killed is martyrdom and to be exiled from my land is a spiritual journey.”

    We need to have high aspirations, and we need to have the desire to be someone special to Allah. Once Allah becomes our main concern, we caninsha’Allah be in the same mindset as Ibn Taymiyyah. What can people do to us when we carry paradise in our hearts?

    One of the Names of Allah that should inspire us is Al-Wali, The Ally. Allah says in the Qur’an:

    “Allah is the ally [Wali] of those who believe. He brings them out from darkness into the light…” (Qur’an, 2:257)

    What do you feel when you read this verse? Many of us have read this verse again and again, and some of us have contemplated over the meaning of being a wali of Allah. Whenever we think of someone being a waliof Allah, we think of great devoted scholars, courageous fighters, people truly close to Allah… but not us. “We could never be His awliya… could we?”

    Allah tells us in this verse that He is the Waliof those who believe. As believers, we are already part of that group, insha’Allah. But to truly earn the status of Allah’s Wali, to be at that elevated level, we have to aspire towards it.

    What does Al-Wali mean?
    Al-Wali has different translations; the ‘ally’, ‘protector’, ‘guardian’ or ‘patron’. In Arab countries, schools usually request the permission of “wali amr” (the Wali of the affairs) of a child for anything concerning him or her, meaning the child’s guardian. What are the characteristics of a child’s guardian?

    It must be a person who a) is close to the child, and b) takes care of the child.

    If Allah is your Wali, then He is close to you and takes care of you.

    Allah took care of the affairs of the Prophet Yusuf `alayhi sallatu wa sallam (may Allah send His peace and blessings on him). When Yusuf (as) was alone in the well, Allah made specific travelers thirsty at that particular time so that they could rescue him and take him on their journey with them. Later, the people who bought Yusuf (as) as a slave turned out to be a couple who were infertile. At every step of the way, Allah was with Yusuf (as). No doubt, he faced hardships, but Allah is always protecting.

    So, there are going to be problems even if you are a Wali of Allah, but at the end of the day, He is still taking care of you. At the end of Yusuf’s (as) story, he proclaims, “Creator of the heavens and earth, You are myWali in this world and in the Hereafter.” (Quran, 12:101).

    Truly, it is an impoverished person who does not have Allah as their Wali, the person who takes his Wali as the dunya.

    What happens if you are a Wali of Allah?

    1. You have no fear in this dunya, no sadness in akhirah.


    “Unquestionably, [for] the awliya of Allah there will be no fear concerning them, nor will they grieve”. (Qur’an, 10:62)2. He will put light in your life.


    “Allah is the ally of those who believe. He brings them out from darkness into the light.” (Qur’an, 2:257)3. Allah will give you victory

    Allah says in a hadith qudsi: “Whoevertakes a Wali of Mine as an enemy, I will wage war on him…” (Bukhari)

    Would’nt you want to be one of these people? Be ambitious. Why couldn’t it be you?

    So how can I be a Wali?
    “Unquestionably, [for] the awliya of Allah there will be no fear concerning them, nor will they grieve. Those who believed and had taqwa of Allah” (Qur’an, 10:62)

    Striving for taqwa gives us the status of a Wali inshaAllah.

    So how do we get Taqwa?
    Some scholars have defined taqwa as when Allah finds you where He has ordered you to be, and does not find you where He has forbidden. The following hadith qudsi sheds more light:

    “Whosoever acts with enmity towards a closer servant of Mine (Wali), I will indeed declare war against him. Nothing endears My servant to Me than doing of what I have made obligatory upon him to do. And My servant continues to draw nearer to Me with the supererogatory (nawafil) so that I shall love him. When I love him, I shall be his hearing with which he shall hear, his sight with which he shall see, his hands with which he shall hold, and his feet with which he shall walk. And if he asks (something) of Me, I shall surely give it to him, and if he takes refuge in Me, I shall certainly grant him it.” (Bukhari)

    Another thing to be inspired by: Jannah
    Sometimes we forget about Jannah, Paradise. But Paradise is a reality.

    I’m supposed to travel to Granada tomorrow insh’Allah (if Allah wills). Everyone has been telling me how amazing and beautiful it is. A part of me is really excited to explore it and its history, but another part of me is just looking forward to having a break. I’ve been preparing: I will take two books, one spiritual and one political. I’ve made sure I’ve tied up all the ends here. Just as Granada is a reality for me and something to look forward to, Jannah should be just the same for us since we have its description.
    Imagine this: you’ve just crossed the sirat(bridge over hell) and made it to the other side. You are waiting for the doors of Jannah to open. Finally they open to the Prophet:saw: (peace be upon him) and you are in awe. Truly this place is as the Prophet :saw: described which “no eye has seen, no ear has heard, and the mind of no man has conceived”, [Bukhari]. What is the ground made of? It smells a little like saffron, subhan’Allah! What are those trees with huge fruits? Is that a river of honey? Dip your finger in it, that can’t be honey! You’ve never had anything like it in your life. You try it again and it tastes even better. How is that possible? Ok, enough honey. Where is my house? As you are being escorted to your home, you see it’s not just a house. It’s a mansion! Not even Bill Gates had it this good, and you are told you earned it because you donated $10 for that masjid1. If only you had donated more! Well this mansion is enough. You’re eager to start exploring.

    You enter from the front door with a texture that feels pearly. Are the doors made of pearls? Subhan’Allah! You walk in and there’s someone there. Is that your spouse from the dunya? But they look different. They’re so beautiful, you’re mesmerized. You take their hand and walk out and you see that person who wronged you in the dunya. Even though you forgave on earth, whenever you saw them, you’d still get a bit frustrated. But for some reason it’s ok now. It’s all good. Actually- you’re happy to see them. In fact, you can’t stop smiling.

    This place is awesome. You feel so light and airy. You feel as though nothing bad has ever happened to you in your life. You have peace.

    It can’t get better than this, right?

    Yes it can. As you walk outside your mansion, you see people rushing to go some place. They’re crowding around someone. Is that RasulAllah:saw:?! Without realizing, tears stream down your face, it IS Rasul’Allah! And he is more beautiful than any of the descriptions you’ve read. You embrace him. He smiles at you, and then you invite him to dinner at your house. You walk away, still in awe that you’ve just seen the final Messenger of God, and… Is that Abu Bakr (ra)? With `Umar (ra)! And over there is Fatima (ra), sitting with her mother Khadija (ra)! And there’s Mariam (as)! You overhear a conversation and it’s someone asking Salaah ad-Deen how it felt to liberate Jerusalem.

    Finally, it’s the pinnacle of Jannah. Being with Allah. You actually get to see Allah. The highest, greatest most amazing pleasure that surpasses everything we’ve just talked about. Seeing your Lord, Most High.
    I want that! What should I aspire to?

    We were all created differently for a reason. Sultan Mehmet the Conqueror known in Arabic as Muhammad al-Fateh, was inspired by something. He heard the hadith of the Prophet :saw: “Verily you shall conquer Constantinople. What a wonderful leader will he be, and what a wonderful army will that army be!” [Ahmad] and he wanted to be that person. He had the opportunity and the skill. He persisted and Allah gave him success. We don’t all have to be Sultan Mehmet II, but we should all desire to be something special to Allah.

    So read the Qur’an and find something inspirational. I knew someone who was inspired by the hadith where the Prophet :saw: names the categories of people who are protected under the shade of Allah on Judgment day. The category that they were inspired by was “the person whose left hand doesn’t know what his right hand has given (in charity)”. So they decided to apply that hadith. They would give money every Friday atsalaat al-jumu`ah, without looking at how much they were giving. Whatever was in their wallet, they would give. The person said, “SubhanAllah. Never did I give money but that it came back to me!”

    There is so much to look forward to and so much to have hope for. We should not be satisfied with a basic level of faith and doing extra only once in a while. Rather we should say, “this is who I want to be!” and live every day wanting to become the Wali of Allah.

    1. “He who builds a Masjid for Allah (swt), even as small as a bird’s nest or smaller, Allah (swt) will build for him a house in Paradise .”
    2. of course only Allah knows who will be in Jannah, but this is just so we can imagine.

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  • urban rose
    replied
    Re: How to achieve tranquility of the heart?

    beautiful thread, jazaakAllahu khayran for sharing

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  • RaNdOm
    replied
    Re: How to achieve tranquility of the heart?

    Part 15 :love:

    Remember Me and I will remember you

    “Unquestionably, by the remembrance of Allah hearts are assured.” (Qur’an, 13:28)

    In the last article in this section, we wrap up the things we have to do in our journey to gain tranquility of the heart with the remembrance of Allah.

    When we try to figure out why we are so often bothered, why we feel disturbed internally, or why we feel sad – we need to go back to our hearts. The Prophet :saw: (may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “Do not talk too much without remembering and mentioning Allah, for too much talk without mentioning Allah hardens the heart, and the person farthest from Allah is the one with a hard heart.” (Tirmidhi)

    SubhanAllah (glory to Allah) – our heart hardens when we do not remember Allah. The heart’s nourishment is the remembrance of Allah, and when we fail to remember Him, it is no wonder that we feel down for no apparent reason. Ibn al-Qayyim stated, “In the heart there is hardness which can only be softened by remembrance of Allah. So the slave must treat the hardness of his heart with the remembrance of Allah.” For those of us who feel that Islam itself has become heavy upon us, look at the answer the Prophet :saw: gave to a man who said, ‘O Messenger of Allah, the laws of Islam seem to be a lot for me (to remember), so tell me something that I should stick to.’ He :saw: replied, ‘Let your tongue never cease to be moist with the remembrance of Allah’. (Tirmidhi)

    And what is the effect of this remembrance? It acts as a polish for the hearts from its rust, and causes us to be remembered by Allah the Most High. Allah tells us in this amazing hadith qudsi:

    “I am to my servant as he expects of Me, I am with him when he remembers Me. If he remembers Me in his heart, I remember him to Myself, and if he remembers me in an assembly, I mention him in an assembly better than his…” (Bukhari and Muslim)

    So what exactly is remembrance?
    Remembrance of Allah includes specifieddhikr (such as saying subhan’Allah, la ilaha ila Allah, etc.), but it is also anything you do related to Allah or mentioning Allah. Anything that you do with Allah in mind – whether it is thinking well of Him, giving charity with the specific intention of doing it for His sake, making du’a’ (supplication) and so on is within the realm of dhikr.

    Ways of dhikr
    Let’s get more specific. What are the things we can do that are included in dhikr?

    Intention
    Like we said in the article on earning Allah’s love, we need to immerse ourselves in good works. That said, when we do good, we must always try to be conscious of the fact that we are doing it for Allah. Talk to Allah as you are doing the good deed, ask Him to accept it from you, and to enable you to do more good. Add intentions – such as doing it for Allah, following the sunnah (tradition of the Propeht :saw:), helping fellow Muslims and people – the more you remember Allah, the more He will remember you. And inevitably you will feel that in your life.

    Remember, when we do good, we need to do good with the heart. We probably do certain things anyway – such as giving charity here and there, making du`a’ and so on. But we do them without heart, without any feeling or emotion that this is for Allah. We need to do these things knowing that in them is a cure for what is in our hearts, and that when we feel down, we go to these things – whether it is helping out others or pleading with Allah in our sujood(prostration).

    Turning to Him
    “Whoever comes to me walking, I go to him at speed.” (Bukhari)
    It is impossible for you to return to Allah and He rejects you. Look at all these ahadeethon those who return to Him:

    ” Allah is happier when a servant of His repents to Him than a man who was on his camel in a waterless desert and the camel escaped from him with his food and water. When he has lost hope of finding it, he retired to a tree and lied down under its shade. As he was there, the camel suddenly appeared in front of him. He took hold of its halter and said in his state of excessive joy: ‘O my Lord You are my servant and I am Your Lord.’ He uttered this erroneous statement as a result of his being overjoyed.” (Muslim)

    Allah says in a beautiful hadith qudsi:

    “O son of Adam, so long as you call upon Me and ask of Me, I shall forgive you for what you have done, and I shall not mind. O son of Adam, were your sins to reach the clouds of the sky and were you then to ask forgiveness of Me, I would forgive you. O son of Adam, were you to come to Me with sins nearly as great as the earth and were you then to face Me, ascribing no partner to Me, I would bring you forgiveness nearly as great as its.” (Tirmidhi)

    Finally Allah says:
    “Remember Allah during times of ease and He will remember you during times of difficulty” (Tirmidhi)
    Thanking Him

    “And [remember] when your Lord proclaimed, ‘If you are grateful, I will surely increase you [in favor]…” (Qur’an, 14:7)

    Thanking is recognizing and appreciating. The more you thank, the more you will see. The more you see how Allah has blessed you, you see His presence in your life and this in itself should create a certain soothing of the heart. By thanking Allah, you are recognizing He is al-Wahhab (the Giver of gifts), ar-Razzaq (the Sustainer), al-Wadud(the Most Loving) and insha’Allah (God willingly) you will be able to recognize how He manifests His attributes and Names in your life.

    Take the time out every evening to thank Allah for the blessings in your day – not only will you be overwhelmed because you will never be able to enumerate them, but you will truly recognize Allah’s presence in your life.

    Daily Wird
    “And remember your Lord much and exalt [Him with praise] in the evening and the morning.” (Qur’an, 3:41)

    We know that the Prophet:saw: always remembered Allah – this is why we havedu’a’ and adhkar for almost everything we do: from entering into the restroom to what to say when someone compliments us. The Prophet:saw also had specific remembrances that he said every morning and every evening (they can be found here). Each of these words and phrases are precious – not only do they polish your heart and cleanse them of their disturbances, but the Prophet :saw: would say them for protection, and that in itself should give us peace of mind and heart. Yaqeen is so important – if the Prophet :saw: has told us that saying certain words will have an effect – we should have no doubt.

    We should take the time to understand these words, so that they truly enter our hearts.

    May Allah make us of people “who remember Allah while standing or sitting or [lying] on their sides and give thought to the creation of the heavens and the earth, [saying], “Our Lord, You did not create this aimlessly; exalted are You [above such a thing]; then protect us from the punishment of the Fire.” (Qur’an, 3:191)

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  • RaNdOm
    replied
    Re: How to achieve tranquility of the heart?

    Part 14 :love:

    All you need to do is ask

    “Is He [not best] who responds to the desperate one when he calls upon Him…” (Qur’an, 27:62)

    For whatever problem we have, whatever difficulty we find ourselves in, we have the most powerful weapon to ward off the pain that plagues us. It is the weapon of du`a’. We know with certainty that Allah is Al-Mujeeb (The Responsive). We have read many articles telling us about the importance of du`a’, but in order for our du`a’ to be truly meaningful, we must accompany that du`a’ with a certain brokenness in the heart. This brokenness is the feeling of utter need, submission and surrender to Allah, and realizing that truly it is only He who can get us out of our state. In a beautiful hadith qudsi, Allah says:

    “O My servants, I have forbidden oppression for Myself and have made it forbidden amongst you, so do not oppress one another.
    O My servants, all of you are astray except for those I have guided, so seek guidance of Me and I shall guide you,
    O My servants, all of you are hungry except for those I have fed, so seek food of Me and I shall feed you.
    O My servants, all of you are naked except for those I have clothed, so seek clothing of Me and I shall clothe you.
    O My servants, you sin by night and by day, and I forgive all sins, so seek forgiveness of Me and I shall forgive you.
    O My servants, you will not attain harming Me so as to harm Me, and will not attain benefitting Me so as to benefit Me.
    O My servants, were the first of you and the last of you, the human of you and the jinn of you to be as pious as the most pious heart of any one man of you, that would not increase My kingdom in anything.
    O My servants, were the first of you and the last of you, the human of you and the jinn of you to be as wicked as the most wicked heart of any one man of you, that would not decrease My kingdom in anything.
    O My servants, were the first of you and the last of you, the human of you and the jinn of you to rise up in one place and make a request of Me, and were I to give everyone what he requested, that would not decrease what I have, any more that a needle decreases the sea if put into it.
    O My servants, it is but your deeds that I reckon up for you and then recompense you for, so let him who finds good, praise Allah, and let him who finds other than that, blame no one but himself.” (Muslim)

    Subhan’Allah (exalted is Allah), this hadith requires us to read it more than once to truly grasp its meaning. In essence, Allah is telling us that everything is from Him – He possesses this whole world and all that is in it, therefore we should seek all of our needs from Him.

    Allah has named Himself Al-Mujeeb, which means the One who responds. Just as we are certain that the Qur’an is true, we must be certain that Allah, Al-Mujeeb, will answer our call. We should never think that Allah will not answer, because by feeling so, we are denying this attribute (siffat) of Allah. Whenever we are feeling down, we should not hesitate to ask Him over and over again, and to go into sujood (prostration) and plead because that is the closest that we are to Him. If we realize this, the doors of mercy have been opened for us, because the Prophet :saw: said, “For whoever the door of du`a’ opened, for him the doors of mercy are opened.” (Tirmidhi).

    Your du`a’ is deposited with Allah, and as was narrated from the Prophet :saw:, your du`a’ does something. Either Allah will speedily answer your du`a’ or He will save it for you until the Hereafter, or He will avert something bad equal to the value of the du`a’ (Ahmad). So we should never leave du`a’. The Prophet :saw: told us, “Do not stop making du`a’, because nobody who makes du`a’ is forsaken.” (Hakim)
    Insha’Allah, you will be answered. The Prophet :saw: said, “Verily your Lord is Generous and Shy. If His servant raises his hands to Him (in supplication) He becomes shy to return them empty.” (Ahmad, Abu Dawud, Tirmidhi)

    Remember: our Lord is not forgetful. Sometimes you might even forget that you once made du`a’ for something, but He might give it to you years later.

    No answer?

    We must always have certainty that Allah answers. But sometimes doubt enters one’s heart: “…But I asked, I made du`a’... and I don’t see anything?” Firstly, just as we know that Allah is Al-Mujeeb, we must also know He is Al-Hakeem (the Most Wise).

    He may delay answering your prayer for a number of reasons; one is to test your trust in Him. We all say we believe Allah is the Al-Mujeeb when everything lands at our feet, but what about when we don’t immediately see the fruits of our du`a’? I knew a woman who was telling the story of how her husband did not pray. When she married him, she didn’t know, and as the marriage progressed she discovered that he was skeptical of religion as well. So she would wake up every night for qiyam al-layl (the night prayer) and plead with Allah to guide Him. Do you know how long she prayed for? Two years. And she says it was so unexpected; he came home from a business trip with a complete change of heart. It turns out that on the plane he was seated next to a great sheikh who began talking to him. And that is how he changed.

    Another reason is that Allah knows when it is best to answer. Perhaps you are asking for a job and He could give you a job at this very moment, but He will delay it because He knows that in a couple of months, a better job will come along. Perhaps what you are asking for is not good for you, or He will give you something better in the Hereafter.

    Allah also may delay the answer to make us work harder so we are prepared for it. If we look at Palestine, we may think, “Wow, the Muslim Ummah prays so much and we don’t see anything changing.” But in truth, although the majority of theUmmah prays intensely during Ramadan, many do not make du`a’ with true pleading. It is almost an afterthought. And if we do (such as when we see the carnage that happened in Gaza) we do not follow up our words by utilizing the means to change the situation; we forget (as is happening now). There are some genuine people who work for change, but they are a minority. So we need to be patient because we need to know that Allah is training the Ummah. The answer is being delayed so that we become worthy of this task.

    There is a beautiful hadith qudsi which states that Allah sometimes delays the answer because He loves hearing the sound of His servant (At-Tabari). Many of us would ask and then when we get what we want we stop going to Allah; but imagine that when the answer is delayed, Allah loves to hear YOUR voice again as you call Him. Wow.

    Allah does not place a burden on us greater than we can bear. If the answer to your du`a’ has been delayed, it’s because Allah KNOWS you can handle it. He tests those whom He loves, so keep asking and remember that Allah makes with hardship ease. And remember, as with tawakkul, we need to exert effort as well.

    Four conditions
    Ibn Al-Qayyim said he who fulfills the following conditions should know that Allah will surely answer his du`a’:
    1. Have certainty that Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala will answer your du`a’. The Prophet ﷺ said, ”Ask Allah with certainty that He will answer your prayers.” (Tirmidhi)
    2. Show submissiveness and devotion during your du`a’. The Prophet :saw: said, ‘Know that Allah will not accept the supplication from an absent heart.’ (Tirmidhi)
    3. Be patient and do not hasten for an answer. The Prophet :saw: said: ‘The du`a’ of any worshipper will continue to be responded to, as long as… he is not hasty’ i.e. as long as he doesn’t lose patience. [Muslim]
    4. Continue to gain a lawful means of living. The Prophet :saw: narrated a story about a man asking Allah, saying “O Lord! O Lord!” but his food was unlawful, his drink was unlawful, his clothing was unlawful, and he was nourished unlawfully; so how can he be answered?!” (Muslim)

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