Islamic Education- Benefits of Seeking the Path of Allah- Lesson (2-4): The Connection with Allah- The Different Perspectives of the Believer.
Last update:2017-12-15
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Praise be to Allah, the Lord of Creations, and Peace and blessings be upon our prophet Muhammad, the faithful and the honest.
 Oh, Allah, we know nothing but what You teach us. You are the All- Knower, the Wise. Oh Allah, teach us what is good for us, and benefit us from what You taught us, and increase our knowledge. Show us the righteous things as righteous and help us to do them, and show us the bad things as bad and help us to keep away from them.
  O Allah our Lord, lead us out from the depths of darkness and illusion, unto the lights of erudition and knowledge, and from the muddy shallows of lusts unto the heavens of Your Vicinity.

Allah's servant has two connections; one with Allah and one with His servants:

 Dear brothers, we are still discussing some points of benefits which are stated by a notable scholar in his book entitled, Al-Fawa'id (Points of Benefit). This notable scholar (Ibn Al-Qayyim) said, "The servant has a veil between him and Allah and another one between him and people." As you know, one of Allah's Beautiful Names is As-Sattar (the One Who conceals (people's faults and mistakes)), so if you have a good reputation, Allah preserves it for you from being touched in harm. He said, "Whoever tore this veil between him and Allah, Allah will tear the veil between him and people." These words lead us to the truth that the servant of Allah has two connections: One with Allah and another with people, given the foundation of religion is mentioned in the following Ayah:

﴾"And He has made me blessed wheresoever I be, and has enjoined on me Salat (prayer), and Zakat, as long as I live."﴿

[Maryam, 31]

 Thus, Salat is to be connected with the Creator, whereas Zakat is to be benevolent with Allah's servants. In other words, you swing between two connections, one with Allah and another with Allah's servants, and beware, dear brother, if your connection with Allah is right, you will be saved and your connection with people will thrive thereof. Allah the Almighty says:

﴾ And I endued you with love from Me﴿

[Ta-Ha, 39]

 If Allah loves you, people will love you, because due to the Omnipotence and Wisdom of Allah the Almighty, He will cast into the hearts of people the love to you, provided your connection with Him is right, but when you breach the veil between you and Allah (i.e. the veil of protection), Allah will rupture the veil between you and people (which used to conceal your faults).

 Our Master Ka'b Ibn Malik, one of the Prophet's companions, lingered behind the Prophet PBUH in time of Jihad. When the Prophet PBUH returned (from the battle of Tabuk), Ka'b realized the tremendous burden he was shouldering and wondered what explanation he should offer. This companion felt torn between lying to the Prophet PBUH, as he was capable of forging a false excuse, and telling the truth. However, his conceptions were correct, so he said, "I speak fluently and eloquently, and if I avoid his anger by lying, Allah the Almighty will be angry with me, so I decided firmly to speak the truth." The Prophet PBUH had an arrangement for him that was decreed by Allah the Almighty, for he was abandoned for 50 days then Allah the Almighty forgave him.

 In medicine, every disease has symptoms and certain diagnosis, and the good physician is the one who is able to diagnose the disease rightly, whereas the physician who treats only the symptoms is not a good doctor. The fever, for example, might be a symptom of an infection, so if the doctor treats only the fever, he is ignorant of the disease that causes it, whereas the doctor who treats the main cause of the fever (the disease itself) will cure the patient. Much in the same line, we have million affairs and problems between us and the people around us, like our relatives, neighbors…etc, and some of them are more powerful than us, while others are weaker than us, so when do we get our affairs straight and when do they thrive? We do that when our connection with Allah is right.

Establishing a connection with the Creator and being benevolent to His creations:

 Ibn Al-Qayyim said, "The servant has a veil between him and Allah" Sitr (veil) is a noun, and it means the curtain we hang on the window, whereas Satr (veil) is the infinitive of the verb "conceal", and both meanings are accepted in the previous quot. "The servant has a veil between him and Allah the Almighty and another one between him and people. Whoever tore this veil between him and Allah the Almighty, Allah will tear the veil between him and people."

 Basically, you should mend your connection with Allah the Almighty regardless of the people around you, and when you do so, Allah the Almighty will defend you, support you, cast love into the hearts of people to you and prevent bad people from hurting you. Thus, you will reap all fruitful results if you correct your connection with Allah the Almighty, and only then your connection with people will be corrected as well. Accordingly, you should concentrate on your connection with Allah the Almighty, and you should be keen on it, because all people are in the Hand of Allah the Almighty:

((…for the hearts are between two Fingers of Allah's Fingers, He changes them as He wills.))

 When Allah loves you, He will cast love to you into the hearts of people, and when Allah the Almighty condemned a servant of His, He will cast hatred into the hearts of people against him. What I want to say is that every problem people suffer from is not a disease, but rather it is a symptom of one disease which is turning away from Allah. This disease is manifested as problems, disputes, accusations or slandering between man and people, and the only way to be safe from all that is to reconcile with Allah the Almighty, for all people's affairs are in His Hand, and this is the gist of Tawheed, and as it was said, "Servants of Allah have never learnt anything better than Tawheed."

 This is what religion is all about; it is about establishing a connection with Allah and being benevolent to people. Correct your connection with Allah and do not care about others, for when you do so, everyone including your enemies will serve you. Furthermore, you will be protected from bad people, because you are included in Allah's Providence, and this means that Allah is pleased with you and He makes people pleased with you.

((Whoever seeks to please men at the expense of Allah's Displeasure, will win the Displeasure of Allah and Allah will cause men to be displeased with him))

 I hope that this point is clear. As I have mentioned earlier, there are two connections in the religion, one is directed up to heaven and it is with Allah and another is directed down to earth and it is with people, so do not make a big deal of any problem you face with people around you, for your problems will be taken care of by Allah if your connection with Him is right, and He will facilitate all your matters, will protect you from bad people and will cast love into the hearts of people to you.

 I told you before the story of one of the Umayyad Caliphs, Yazeed bin Mou'awiyah, who issued an order to his ruler over Basra. The ruler was not willing to obey Yazeed's order, because it seemed to clash with certain principles of the religion of Islam. Therefore, he asked the well-known venerable Tabi'i (one of the next generation after that of the Prophet's Companions), Al-Hassan Al-Basri, what to do. Al-Hassan Al-Basri said few words that sum up the whole Islamic Monotheism, "You should know that Allah can protect you from Yazeed, but Yazeed cannot protect you from Allah." I hope that each one of us will instill this piece of advice in his mind and heart.

The most prudent person is he who enhances his connection with Allah:

  He said, "The servant has a Lord that he will stand in front of and a house that he will live in, so he must seek the pleasure of Allah before meeting Him, and he should furnish his house before moving into it." You will turn back to Allah and will end up under the ground (i.e. in a grave). Allah the Almighty says:

﴾ Verily, to Us will be their return* Then verily, for Us will be their reckoning.﴿

[Al-Ghaashiyah, 25-26]

 The most prudent man is the one who corrects his connection with Allah the Almighty since he will turn back to Him, and he is the one who fills his grave with the lights of the good deeds, because to the grave shall be his destiny, given the grave is the chest of man' actions. You are in dire need of a good sincere deed for the Sake of Allah, so that it may lighten your grave and make it a garden of the gardens of Paradise. Moving from a luxurious house to a narrow dark grave under the ground without any cladding of any kinds or even dim lights is a scary thing, but the believer's grave will be like a garden of Paradise. The servant of Allah has a Lord Whom he will meet with, and has a final abode (i.e. the grave) where he will stay, so seek your Lord's Pleasure before you meet Him, and build you grave before you move to it.

Wasting time is worse than death:

 Man is time, since time is the most precious thing you own, and due to the fact that time is your capital, the greatest loss is to lose your capital. He said, "Losing time is harder than death, as losing time keeps you away from Allah and the Hereafter, while death keeps you away from the worldly life and people, and transfer you to the Hereafter and its blessings, so in this case which is more crucial, is it the thing which keeps you away from Allah or the thing which keeps you away from the worldly life? Losing time is graver than death." If you see a poor man who wears torn clothes burning 50.000 Liras in a dumpster, will you doubt for even one second that he is insane?

 The insane person, according to the Divine Laws and man-made laws should be placed under guardianship (after declaring him legally incompetent), so which is more important, money or time? This is a logical discussion. Consider this example: if a person is afflicted with an intractable disease, and the doctor tells him that he needs to go abroad- to a far country- and have an operation which costs as much as his house, but the chance of having a successful operation and having his life saved is 50%, do you think he will hesitate to sell his house and proceed with the operation? He will never hesitate, but why? Because time is more precious to him than money, so if he could buy few more years to live, it will be worthwhile to sell the house, and this hope will make him go under the knife.

 Actually, the value of time is installed in each one of us to be more precious than money, so the one who burns money in the dumpster is insane, but how about the one who loses his time in trivial matters and sins? Logically speaking, he will be more insane than the former (i.e. the one who burns his money). For this reason, the most condemned thing is to lose time because as the scholar (Al-Hasan A-Basri) said, "man is nothing but a number of days; whenever each day passes then part of you has gone." Not to mention, you do not own the past for it happened and it is over, and you do not own the future for it may not come, so all you own is the present moment.

The anguish in the Hereafter is ongoing:

 He said, "The whole world from its beginning until its end is not worth an hour of sadness, so what about the sadness of whole life? What about the sadness for eternity in the Hereafter?" Once I joked with a person and said, "If I give you 100 million Dollars and ask you to go to any place in the world, to check in to a five star hotel, to go to all nightclubs there and to do whatever you like in return for being tortured for 10 hours or a month, will you do it?" He answered, "No, I will not", so I said, "How can man then accept to enjoy all these pleasures for limited time in return for eternal torment?"

 "The whole world from its beginning until its end is not worth an hour of sadness, so what about the sadness of whole life?" When one of us is struck with tooth pain during the night and is not able to find a dentist, will his pain go away upon recalling all the tasty food he has eaten in the banquets he was invited to in the past? No, it will not! The torment of the Hereafter will make man say, "I have never seen any good in my life", and this is exactly what Allah is warning us about. Allah the Almighty says:

﴾ So how bold they are (for evil deeds which will push them) to the Fire.﴿

[Al-Baqarah, 175]

 "The whole world from its beginning until its end is not worth an hour of sadness, so what about the sadness of whole life?" It is said, "What we love today will catch up with what we hate tomorrow, and what we hate today will catch up with what we love tomorrow." When agony is temporary, man is able to put up with it if eternal happiness is awaiting him, but if loveable matters are temporary and eternal misery is awaiting him, this will be the irreparable loss.

The greatest success is to be busy with what brings benefits to you:

  In order to be heedful, make the hour of death a reference line and measure all your actions, meetings, businesses, movements, travels, settlements, earnings, gains and activities according to it, so if whatever you are doing will be fruitful after death, then they are deeds performed for the Hereafter, but if they are fruitful only in the worldly life, then they are deeds of the mundane life which is evanescent. This method will enable you to evaluate all your deeds.

 The good results of some deeds are collected in the worldly life and death puts an end to them, while the good results of other deeds are collected after death. Take for example seeking religious knowledge, getting to know the Method of Allah, offering good deeds, calling people to Allah, enjoining Ma'roof and prohibiting Munkar, all of which are deeds whose results are collected after death.

 The most prudent people are the believers, for they are the most rational and the cleverest since they are among the foremost who invest their time rightly and who will reap the fruits of their deeds after death. Ibn Al-Qayyim said, "The most precious reward during life is to busy yourself with most suitable and useful matters in their exact and suitable time. How can he be rational who sells Paradise and what is in it, for one hour of passing pleasure?" The Prophet PBUH said:

((It is bad enough that an hour when a prohibited lust is fulfilled causes someone a long-lasting grief.))

 Most of crimes are results of an hour of pleasure fulfillment or an hour of anger. After this hour passes, criminals spend 20 or 30 years in prison. One hour of pleasure might bring AIDS to someone. The Prophet PBUH said:

((O Lord, a soul which is comfortable and over-fed in the worldly life, might be hungry and naked on the Day of Resurrection, O Lord, a soul which is hungry and naked in the worldly life, might be comfortable and over-fed on the Day of Resurrection. O Lord, a man might treat his self with honor while actually he is humiliating it. O Lord, a man might be humiliating his self while actually he is honoring it.))

The believer is always praising Allah and accusing his ownself of falling behind:

  He went on, "The pious man will leave this worldly life while he did not obtain satisfaction in two matters: crying for himself and praising Allah." The believer is always under the impression that he has fallen short. The durable fact is that most people show regret when death comes even the believers. Yet, the believer regrets every hour he misses without getting to know Allah more or without offering a good deed which draws him closer to Allah.

 There are two kinds of fear, and Ibn Al-Qayyim made a nice difference between them. He said, "If you are afraid of any creature, you will run away from it. When you are afraid of Allah, you will love Him and yearn to be close to Him." Thus, fearing people brings about estrangement, whereas fearing Allah brings about affability, and the more you fear Allah, the closer you will be to Him.

Man should avoid thoughts which do not please Allah:

 He said, "If knowledge is useful without actions, Allah, the Exalted would never have dispraised the people of the book, and if actions were useful without devotions, He would never have dispraised the hypocrite." Man is in dire need of knowledge, good deeds and sincerity, for knowledge is useless without applying it, and applying it is useless without sincerity.

 Ibn Al-Qayyim put forth a very precise psychological analysis, for he said, "Stand firm against any evil thought." The dialogue is very dangerous, for man might be on a travel watching this person or that person while he is silent, but from inside he has a prolonged dialogue with himself, and the mind during this dialogue will never stop bringing thoughts. This dialogue is powerful enough to make man sometimes talk to himself while he is walking, and this dialogue will be a serious problem if it is about evil thoughts which do not please Allah.

 He said, "Stand firm against evil thoughts, for if you fail to do so, they will become ideas, if you do not, they will become desires, so fight against them. If you do not, they will become a form of determination and intention, if you do not resist, they will become actions, and if you do not follow them up with their opposite, they will become habits that will be hard to quit." As you can see a thought will become an idea, which will become a desire, which will become a determined will and finally it will turn into actions. It is true that Allah will reckon man for actions only (and not for thoughts), but the evil thoughts which do not please Allah might evolve to something else if man does not stand firm against them, and they might turn into ideas, then desires, then strong determination and finally deeds, given deeds turn into habits and habits usually die hard.

 If someone plays the dice, and then you convey to him the Prophetic Hadith that "He who played Nardashir (a game similar to backgammon) is like one who dyed his hand with the flesh and blood of swine", and you tell him that it is a waste of time and that it is condemned, putting forth all the proofs to prove your point. Yet, he says, "Where is the backgammon?", turning a deaf ear to all what you tell him, this proves that this sin has turned into bad a habit, and bad habits die hard.

 Two days ago, a man visited me from a neighboring country, and he said to me, "I have something to tell you, but I am embarrassed to say it, so I recorded it on a tape, and you can listen to it." His story is that he committed a major sin, and he repented from it about a thousand times, but he kept committing it over and over again until it became a habit. Every time he tried to quit, he went back doing it, so he was in great pain, and he was crying, because that sin was rooted in him. Hence, never say that repentance is easy, for this person is a clear example of the otherwise.

The levels of Taqwa (piety):

 He said, "Piety has Three Levels:

 1. Protecting the heart and limbs against sin and forbidden actions.
  2. Protecting them against undesirable matters.
  3. Protecting against curiosity and whatever is not of one's concern."

 The Prophet PBUH said:

((Beware of the look (at women) out of curiosity, for it might be your means to commit a sin.))

 If you think too much about something you have nothing to do with, you will find yourself consumed until you yearn to do it, and after you do so, you will feel deprived (since you cannot get it). Some people for example are too much into cars and electric devices to such a point that they delude that they own them, this excessive curiosity will make them feel deprived (because they cannot afford buying them), and such a feeling is a problem unto itself. The Prophet PBUH taught us to say the following whenever we see something beautiful:

((It has been narrated on the authority of Anas b. Malik that the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said: O Allah, there is no life, but the life of the Hereafter, So forgive Thou the Ansar and the Muhajirs.))

[Al-Bukhari, on the authority of Anas]

 Ibn Al-Qayyim said, "The first will grant life to the servant, the second will grant him health and power, and the third will grant him happiness and joy." In order to maintain your safety and the strength of your ownself and in order to gain happiness, you should refrain from sins and errors, from detestable things and from anything other than Allah.

Some gifts are in the form of calamities:

  He said, "He whom Allah has predestined to enter Paradise, the reasons which will cause his entrance shall spring from calamitie." There is heaven in the earthly life, and he who does not enter it, will never enter the Heaven of the Hereafter. Ibn Taymiyyah, may Allah have mercy upon his soul, said, "What can my enemies do to me, my paradise and garden are in my chest, and they are with me wherever I go. My expulsion from my homeland is tourism, my imprisonment is my privacy with Allah, and my killing is martyrdom." If you are a believer, but you do not feel that you are the happiest person on earth, there is a flaw in your faith, and you should find it, given if you are a true believer, you should be the happiest person due to knowing Allah and seeking His Pleasure.

 "He whom Allah has predestined to enter Paradise, the reasons which will cause his entrance shall spring from calamities; and he whom Allah has predestined to enter the Hell-Fire, the reasons which will cause his entrance shall spring from lusts." Thus, the believer's happiness comes from painful calamities, yet they bring him happiness, and the pleasures of Kafir are desires he fulfills, yet they bring him misery. The path to Paradise is furnished with difficulties, whereas the path to Hell is furnished with desires.

He who is afflicted with a calamity should act upon six perspectives:

1- Tawheed (believing in Allah Alone):

 He said, "If a misfortune befalls the slave of Allah (which is an indication of his faith), he must act upon six perspectives: the first one is Tawheed." Beware of ascribing a problem you face to this or that person, for Allah is the One Who decrees, wills, creates and allows it to get to you. If someone got sick or infected with a virus, this is Allah's Decree, for this virus would never have afflicted him without Allah's Will. The Prophet PBUH did not deny contagion, but rather he forbade us from ascribing our diseases to viruses (contagion), because without Allah's Will this virus would never infect you. Whatever Allah decrees shall come to pass, and what Allah does not decree shall never occur, because nothing happens in His Kingdom without His Will, and there is Divine Wisdom behind every reality, so this is the first fact.

 Allah the Almighty is Merciful, Wise, Just and Kind, and when you believe in this, you will be relieved. He said, "The first perspective should be adopted by the believer when a calamity befalls him is Tawheed, for Allah Alone is the One Who decrees, wills and creates, and whatever Allah wills shall come to pass, and whatever Allah does not will shall never come to pass, and by resorting to Tawheed you will be as if you are putting out fire with water."

 The son of one of our brothers got once very sick, and our brother was very distressed so I said to him, "This is the Will of the One you love (i.e. Allah), and this is His Decree and Wisdom, are you not satisfied with His Qada' (Preordainment)?"

2- Justice:

 The second perspective that should be adopted by the believer is to abstain from questioning Allah's Justice. Avoid questioning why a certain calamity befalls someone. There is always Divine Wisdom behind calamities, for Allah will never afflict someone with something without a reason, a justification or a purpose, for this is impossible. Therefore, the second perspective is Justice.

((Ibn Mas'ud reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said, "If any Muslim is afflicted with distress and makes this supplication, then his supplication will be answered: O Allah, I am your servant, the son of your servant, the son of your maidservant. My forelock is in your hand, your command concerning me prevails, and your decision concerning me is just. I call upon you by every one of the beautiful names with which you have described yourself, or which you have revealed in your Book, or you have taught to anyone of your creatures, or which you have chosen to keep in the knowledge of the unseen with you, to make the Quran the delight of my heart, the light of my chest, and to remove my sadness and dispel my anxiety." The Prophet PBUH said, "If he says this, Allah will remove his affliction and replace it with joy and happiness." They said, "O Messenger of Allah, should we not learn it?" The Prophet said, "Yes, whoever hears it should know it."))

[Ahmad, on the authority of Abdullah]

 Everything Allah decrees is perfect justice, wisdom and mercy.

3- Mercy:

 The third perspective is mercy, for "Allah's Mercy in every calamity is more than His Wrath. Thus, Allah afflicts His servants with calamities and includes mercy within them." Someone might get sick, but Allah guides the doctor to look after him more than usual and to give him the right treatment, so though the disease is painful and scary, Allah the Almighty decrees that this person will be sick in order to test him and then Allah decrees that he will recover.

 I heard a moral story that a man established a very successful business, and he intended to give himself a reward (he was not religiously committed), so he put a big sum of money in his pocket, and he travelled to a very far country to enjoy life in a vacation through which he intended to commit sins, for that was not a problem to him since he was non-religious. When he arrived to that county, he felt acute pain in his back, so he paid the physician a visit, and he was told that he had a cancer in his spinal cord in its early stages. Therefore, he cut his trip short and flied back to his home country, and he repented from all his sins. Later on, he found out that the diagnosis was wrong. He was terrified first (by the possibility of having cancer), so he returned back to Allah and repented, and then Allah cured him. Thus, when Allah decrees something painful to afflict you, be aware that the treatment is ready. Allah says:

﴾ Verily, with the hardship, there is relief (i.e. there is one hardship with two reliefs, so one hardship cannot overcome two reliefs). So when you have finished (from your occupation), then stand up for Allah's worship (i.e. stand up for prayer). And to your Lord (Alone) turn (all your intentions and hopes and) your invocations.﴿

[Ash-Sharh, 6-8]

 Logically speaking, after every distress there is a relief, but it is indicated in the abovementioned Ayah that there will be two relieves after stress, so that man may get assurance from Allah the Almighty. Accordingly, every problem comes with its solution within.

 By Allah dear brothers, I was told that a highly educated, rich and famous man got paralyzed, and he was deeply hurt, so he invoked Allah to decree death for him, because it was easier to him than the situation he was in. Few hours later, he became able to walk again as if there had been nothing wrong with him. After that incident, his life has changed due to the goodness inside him, and his main concern has become to serve people and spread the word of truth. He became a better man due to that disease.

 There are thousands of similar stories in which the disease turns to bring goodness to the patients. When Allah afflicts His servant, there must be wisdom behind this calamity; when Allah cures man from his sickness, man becomes obedient to Him. A non-religious man has a daughter whom he was very fond of. One day she got cancer in her blood, and he asked all available physicians about her condition, and he even took her to Britain, but nothing worked. Suddenly, a transcendental thought crossed his mind, and he thought to himself, "If my wife and I repent to Allah, He may cure this little girl." He determined to repent, and so his wife put on Hijab, and he started to offer prayers and attend religious sessions. Ten years later, he invited me to attend his daughter's wedding, and at that ceremony, I delivered a speech. When I was about to leave, I asked him, "Is she the same daughter?" He answered, "Yes, she is indeed." That daughter was the reason behind his repentance and turning back to Allah, so she was recovered from her disease, and she got married and brought happiness to her father's heart. Do not judge calamities during their early stages, but ponder over them at the end, for most of them will make people repent, reconcile with Allah and have a 180 degree change. Thus, every calamity includes the perspective of Tawheed within, and Allah is the One Who decrees and wills.

 We have discussed the second perspective, which is Justice.

((Your command concerning me prevails, and your decision concerning me is just.))

 The third perspective is Mercy, for Allah's Mercy is more dominant in every Qada' than His Wrath.ع

4- Wisdom:

 The fourth perspective is wisdom. Some people might think that a problem might include mercy and justice, but it happens for no purpose (which is not true). A brother asked me two days ago, "What principle should I follow to judge any connection I have with the people of the worldly life?" I answered him, "You should follow two principles, either rope puling or screw tightening. I mean when you have a connection with one of them, and he starts to pull you to his world (the worldly life), then you should leave him, but when you are able to pull him to your world (seeking the Hereafter), then keep that connection with him." Therefore, there is always wisdom behind any Divine Decree and Will, and Allah never decrees something purposelessly.

5- Praising Allah:

 The fifth perspective is Al-Hamd (praising Allah). Allah should be praised because all matters are in His Hand.

﴾And to Him belong all the praises and thanks, and He is Able to do all things.﴿

[At-Taghabun, 1]

 Allah is always praised for His Will because there is always justice, mercy and wisdom behind every Qada'.

6- Being a slave of Allah:

 The sixth perspective is being a slave of Allah. You are a slave of Allah, and Allah is the Lord, so is there anything you can do regarding that? A Da'iyah (Islamic missioner) once said, "When Allah decrees for someone to enter Hell-Fire (due to his evil deeds) how can anyone save him?" If a calamity afflicts you, and it makes you feel the meaning of being a slave of Allah, you sense Allah's Mercy, Justice and Wisdom, praise Him for it and incline to Tawheed, then you are a true believer by the Lord of Ka'abah. Accepting the painful Qada' with content marks exalted rank of faith.

 You should bear in mind that the worldly life is the abode of trials not the abode of eternal rewards, so man swings between trials and relief in the worldly life. You are tried in whatever Allah the Almighty gives you and whatever He withdraws from you and this is a fact. Sometimes Allah the Almighty tests you by making you enjoy good health, but He deprives you of money. In other cases, He grants you wealth, but He makes you wish you could have had health. Also, He might give you good health and money, but he tries you with a bad wife. Sometimes, Allah gives you good health, money and a good wife, but He makes you sterile, and in other times, Allah gives you children, but He makes you poor. Hence, this is how the believer is tested, and since everyone assumes that his problem is the biggest one, he should bear in mind that success is achieved when he passes this Divine Test with flying colors.

 Being a slave of Allah is manifested in your submission to Him as your Lord in all the matters decreed by Him upon you since He owns you and you are His slave. In other words, you are under His Control since Allah is the One Who is the Owner and the One Who deserves to be praised.

((Abu Dharr (may Allah be pleased with him) quoted the Prophet (PBUH) saying among what he narrated from Allah, the Most High that He has said, "O My slaves, I have made oppression unlawful for myself and I have made it unlawful among you, so do not oppress one another.))

[Muslim, on the authority of Abi Dharr]

 Allah decrees that you are His slave and not His counterpart.

 I would like to repeat the six perspectives: At-Tawheed, Justice, Mercy, Wisdom, praising Allah and being a slave of Him. Let me assure you again that you are a true believer if you pass Allah's Trials successfully.

 You can test yourself through the problems you have. Similarly, when someone wants to test a car he is about to buy, he does not test it on a descending road, but rather he tests it on an ascending one. Thus, you will not reach the highest rank of faith unless you are Divinely Tested and you pass the test after you believe that every calamity is Allah's Qada' and Action, that it includes Wisdom, Justice and Mercy and that you are a slave of Allah. These are the perspectives of the people of faith and they bring happiness to their life.

The consequences of sins:

What are the consequences of sins? Pay attention to the answer: failure, reaching deadlock and making poor decisions, because Allah the Almighty hinders the right decision from whoever commits a sin. All these are consequences of sins. Allah the Almighty says:

﴾ Those who disbelieve [in the Oneness of Allah, and in the Message of Prophet Muhammad PBUH], and hinder (men) from the Path of Allah (Islamic Monotheism), He will render their deeds vain.﴿

[Muhammad, 1]

 Furthermore, the truth will be veiled from the one who is disconnected from Allah the Almighty, because turning away from Allah the Almighty causes man to have blind insight, corrupted heart and bad reputation (since remembering Allah the Almighty brings about good one). Also, man's time will be wasted. The religiously committed believer is actually paying the Zakat of his time, because he invests his time in offering Salat, in attending religious sessions and in obeying Allah. Moreover, whoever pays the Zakat of his time will be blessed with the time he has got left. On the other hand, whoever falls short from offering his Ibadat or seeking religious knowledge will be afflicted with the curse of wasting his time for trivial reasons, and he cannot help it.

 Allah is able to make you lose million hours in vain if you abstain from paying the Zakat of your time. Also, He can afflict you with a disease which may cost you a lot of money, and so you will spend a lot of time and money while you are being treated. Hence, beware of wasting your time, and invest your time in obeying Allah and seeking religious knowledge. Otherwise, Allah will make you spend your time and life on trivial things. Bear in mind that when you pay your Zakat of money, Allah protects your money from destruction, and the same goes for your time, because when you pay the Zakat of your time (by investing it in obeying Him), Allah will protect the rest of your time from being wasted.

 A man once told me that he never missed a religious session every Friday, but one Friday, his family asked him to go with them for a picnic, and they insisted on that, so he left the religious session and took them. During the picnic he headed to the river to fill a bucket he had with water, and on the bank of the river, a very polite (as he seemed at the time) boy said to him, "I will fill it for you", and he did, but when that man got back to his family, he discovered that boy robbed him taking his check book, identity card and his money. He remained distressed for 6 months trying to have another identity card and check book. He suffered, because he changed his destination from attending the religious session to go for a picnic which is useless.

 My advice to you is that if you are used to attend a religious session, do not quit it. Hence, failure, inability to reach the truth, laziness in remembering Allah, wasting time, having people turned away from someone due to feeling uncomfortable with him, having the path to Allah full of obstacles, having the Du'a unanswered, having harsh heart (being merciless), being deprived of benediction in provision and wealth are effects of turning away from Allah and being veiled from Him.

 The believer, on the other hand, is blessed with benediction in his income even if is low. He is also blessed with having benediction in all his affairs, but how? Actually, we do not know how benediction works, and what we know about it is that the little will be enough. I know lots of people who are able to meet their needs with limited income, because benediction comes with Halal money, whereas the one who earns ill-gotten money will not have this benediction. Besides, he will be deprived of Islamic knowledge, will become subject of humiliation, will be insulted by his enemies, will be distressed, will be afflicted with bad companies, will be in grieve and sadness for a long time and will have a life of hardship. Allah the Almighty says:

﴾ "But whosoever turns away from My Reminder (i.e. neither believes in this Qur'an nor acts on its orders, etc.) verily, for him is a life of hardship, and We shall raise him up blind on the Day of Resurrection."﴿

[Ta-Ha, 124]

 It is said, "Sinning brings about heedlessness and will admit the sinner to Hell-Fire. On the other hand, obedience brings about prosperity, making right decisions, recognizing the truth, a heart full of Allah's Remembrance, benediction in time, love of people, responded Du'a, merciful heart, acquiring Islamic knowledge and glory. Also, your enemies will be at your disposal, your heart will be pacified, you will be honored with sincere believing brothers, your burdens will be removed and you will be satisfied with your life. All these blessings are the outcome of being obedient to Allah. All the points we have discussed so far are taken from Al-Fawa'id which are experiences that are compressed in paragraphs.

Translation  : Noura Sharabi
Edited by      : Kawthar Hajj Saleh