2015 has come to an end. I am no saint or religious scholar, but here’s what got me through the year.
- Be open to what He has ordained for us
Which can be quite a challenge most of the time. Lots of WHYs will be asked. At times, what we are facing feels like the biggest problem in the entire universe. How wrong can we be, astaghfirullah. We put up a fight. We deny it. We cry because of it. Pretty exhausting, no?
a) Trust Allah. Has it not been written in [2:286] that “Allah does not burden a soul beyond that it can bear”? No matter how tough it gets, always believe that we’ll make it through. Because He knows we can.
b) Should we ever lose something or someone precious to us, remember what has been promised by Him in [93:4] – “Indeed what is to come will be better for you than what has gone by.”
- Manage our affairs in private
Be it with people or Allah. We all have those moments where we let our emotions get the best of us, and in those times, we are very likely to post things up on social media. Mad or upset with someone, posts to tell the world and hint so-and-so about our feelings will be up. We are quick to “correct” or question others out in the open too. Instead of making the effort to find the DM/PM buttons, we shoot through the comments box and expose their faults or question their abilities to the world. Making dua for ourselves and our loved ones in times of hardship, posts will be up as well.Here’s the reality – success rate to resolve the issues that we have through this method is very low. Instead, it may make things worse.
a) Until we get over our emotions, we ought to remain silent. This is to protect us from hurting others by saying things that we did not mean. It also keeps us aligned to the teachings of our Prophet s.a.w, where it is stated in one of the narrations, “Speak good or remain silent.” [Bukhari & Muslim]
b) Once we are cool, we tackle the root of the problem. To rectify the issues at hand or correct/question someone, speak to him/her directly and do it in private with adab. This way, there are two things that can be avoided – raising suspicions/assumptions in the minds of others and exposing one’s flaws. It is stated in one of the narrations that “Whoever shields (or hides the misdeeds of) a Muslim, Allah will shield him in this world and the Hereafter.” [Muslim] This can be applied to our relations with non-Muslims as well. After all, we are all humans first. I believe this is enough to motivate us to handle our relations and dealings with others better.
c) I have nothing against making dua known to the public, especially if it is meant for our brothers and sisters in Islam all over the world (crises in Syria, Rohingya, Palestine, etc.). It serves as a reminder for us too because not everybody has it easy in life, y’know? And hey, who doesn’t wanna get multifolds of ameen from our hundreds of friends and followers? 🙂
However, when it comes to making dua for loved ones and oneself, or crying out to Allah.. I strongly believe in the purity and sweetness of keeping my conversations with Him private. It is a bond so sacred that I refuse to share it with His creations in fear of losing its sanctity and significance. Besides, as mentioned in one of the narrations, “The supplication of a Muslim for his brother in his absence will certainly be answered. Every time he makes a supplication for good for his brother, the angel appointed for this particular task says: ‘Ameen! May it be for you too’.” [Muslim] MasyAllah. 🙂
- You are enough
Hard to believe, but this is known to be true. There will be times where things are just impossible and beyond our reach. It is normal for us to give them up and move on. There will be days where we use the success of others as a comparison yardstick and doubt ourselves. We dwell in envy and depend on the approval of others in order to make us feel good about ourselves. If it works, good on us, but the reality is that it is not healthy for us in the long run. We’d be depressed when they are no longer around.
a) Never underestimate the power of a dua. When we want certain things to be done right, and in accordance to the Quran and sunnah, but our voice isn’t heard due to traditions and cultural reasons, make dua. Make dua despite knowing that of all the people involved, we’ll be only ones praying for it. In one of the narrations, it states that, “Make supplication to Allah day and night because supplication is a weapon of a believer.” [Abu Ya’la] Our dua will be answered, insyAllah. If it isn’t, believe that something so much better is on its way. 🙂
b) Understand the Quran, learn the sunnah of our Prophet s.a.w and look back on what we have achieved thus far to validate the quality of our existence. Wean off ‘likes’ and words of praises from others. I am not advocating selfishness and isolation from family and friends because hey, the support that comes from kinship and friendships plays vital roles in our lives. Who we include in our inner circle shapes our character and reflects who we are too. It is also important for us to maintain these ties because “The tie of kinship is suspended to the Throne and says: He who unites me Allah would unite him and he who severed me Allah would sever him.” [Muslim]
What I’m saying is, while these ties are essential, having complete reliance on Allah is the way to go. Do not compare the lives of others with ours because what they have may be a test for them and may not be suited for us. Otherwise, we would never be grateful and satisfied. As stated in one of the narrations, “If you all depend on Allah with due reliance, He would certainly give you provision as He gives it to birds who go forth hungry in the morning and return with full belly at dusk.” [At-Tirmidhi] Alhamdulillah. We are exactly where He wants us to be right now. Every experience is part of His divine plan. Our job as a believer is to tawakkal and redha, insyAllah. 🙂
And that folks, is how I survived 2015. May 2016 be a year filled with His blessings, insyAllah.