Won't We Awaken Now
Evil has appeared on land and sea because of what the hands of men have earned, that He may make them taste a part of that which they have done, in order that they may return." (Ar-Rum: 41)
At present, when a wave of discord and unrest runs throughout the world and a situation of uncertainty and disorder prevails everywhere, every individual is naturally disturbed about what he should do in these circumstances. But does the solution to a distressing situation lie in getting distressed? Or do the present conditions demand something else from us? Who should we turn to in these circumstances? Whose help should we seek? Who will guide us? Naturally this can only be done by Someone Who is even more aware than us of our situation, it's causes and consequences. Who else can that be but Allah Ta'ala --- He Who has power and authority over everything, He before Whom everything in the earth and the skies is prostrating and obedient. Let us turn to Him and ask Him for guidance.
HARDSHIPS AND CALAMITIES ARE A WARNING
It is necessary for every heedful eye to learn a lesson from the calamities and disasters occurring in the lives of individuals and nations. To call them a turn of events or merely an accident and move on can prove harmful.
Allah Ta'ala says: "And verily we will make them taste of the near torment (in this world) prior to the supreme torment (in the Hereafter) in order that they may return (repent)." (As-Sajdah: 21)
THE WAY TO AVERT CALAMITIES
"Was there any town that believed and its faith saved it (from the punishment) except the people of Yunus; when they believed we removed from them the torment of disgrace in the life of the world and permitted them to enjoy for a while (more)." (Yunus:98)
Consequently, faith in and obedience to Allah Ta'ala is the only way to success.
TURN BACK TO YOUR LORD
"And turn in repentance and in obedience with true faith to your Lord and submit to Him before the torment comes upon you (and) then you will not be helped." (Az-Zumar: 54)
The need of today is to focus on one's own reformation on an individual and collective level. If we cannot set right the disorder in the world, we can at least correct our own selves.
Let us then strive for our own improvement because the hardships that others are facing today may well engulf those tomorrow who are now mere spectators.
"And fear the fitnah which affects not in particular (only) those of you who do wrong and know that Allah SWT is severe in punishment." (Al-Anfal: 25)
SEEK FORGIVENESS FOR SINS
Confess your sins before Allah SWT and pay special attention to 'Istighfar' (seeking forgiveness).
Allah Ta'ala says: "And: Seek the forgiveness of your Lord, turn to Him in repentance that He may grant you good enjoyment for a term appointed, and bestow His abounding Grace to every owner of grace. But if you turn away, then I fear for you the torment of a Great Day." (Hud: 3)
Prophet Hud (AS) also said the same to his people: "And O my people! Ask forgiveness of your Lord and then repent to Him, He will send you abundant rain, and add strength to your strength, so do not turn away as criminals." (Hud: 52)
"And all of you beg Allah to forgive you all, O believers, that you may be successful." (An-Nur: 31)
In this situation , we must make a special effort to seek collective repentance. This can be a source of strength in our present state of weakness and helplessness, in this lies the guarantee to success and the solution to our problems.
REMEMBER ALLAH SWT ABUNDANTLY
Create peace in your inner world in order to prepare yourself to successfully face external hardships.
Allah Ta'ala says: "Verily in the remembrance of Allah do hearts find rest." (Ar-Ra'd: 28)
And it is also Allah SWT's promise: "Therefore remember Me. I will remember you and be grateful to Me and never be ungrateful to Me." (Al-Baqarah: 152)
SEEK HELP THROUGH PATIENCE, PRAYER & SUPPLICATION
Allah Ta'ala says: "O you who believe! Seek help in patience and As-Salat (prayer). Truly Allah is with the patient." (Al-Baqarah: 153)
Try to offer prayers with more punctuality and more concentration. Extraordinary situations call for some extraordinary ibadah. Offer nawafil (voluntary prayers), Tahajjud and Salat-e-Tauba, etc and specially make the following Quranic supplication in these circumstances:
"Our Lord! Pour forth on us patience and set firm our feet and make us victorious over the disbelieving people." (Al-Baqarah: 250)
Particularly pray for safety from trials, afflictions and for the protection of your faith. Make excessive supplications for the afflicted people and extend all possible help to stop the oppression and to help the oppressed.
Prophet SAW said: "Supplication is beneficial regarding things (calamities) that have happened and things which have not yet happened, so devote yourselves to supplication, O servants of Allah." (Tirmidhi)
THE QURAN IS THE WAY TO SALVATION
Prophet SAW said: "Dissension (fitnah) will surely come. A companion asked him what the way out of it is, to which he replied, "Allah's Book is the way (out), for it contains information of what has happened before you and news of what will happen after you and a decision regarding matters which occur among you. If anyone seeks guidance elsewhere, Allah will lead him astray. It is Allah's strong Rope, it is the wise reminder, it is the straight path. He who speaks according to it has spoken the truth, he who acts according to it is rewarded, he who pronounces judgment according to it is just." (Tirmidhi)
Allah Ta'ala says: "(This is) a Book which We have sent down to you, full of blessings, that they may ponder over its verses and that men of understanding may remember (take heed)." (Sad: 29)
Therefore this Book must be read, understood and its message conveyed to others and principles of living determined in the light of its guidance.
The Prophet SAW said: "The most superior among you are those who learn the Quran and teach it." (Bukhari)
HASTEN TO DO GOOD DEEDS
Do not miss any opportunity to do good. No-one knows when the time to act may run out.
The Prophet SAW said: "Hasten in doing good deeds (before you are overtaken by) turbulence which would be like a part of the dark night." (Muslim)
PAY SPECIAL ATTENTION TO FULFILLMENT OF HUMAN RIGHTS
Do not delay fulfilling the rights of human beings. Depriving humans of their rights is oppression, the punishment of which is given in this both in this world and the Hereafter.
The Prophet SAW said: "Beware of (doing) oppression because on the Day of Judgment, oppression will be a cause for darkness." (Muslim)
MAKE SPECIAL EFFORT TO GIVE SADAQAH
There is nothing greater than sadaqah to ward off calamities and difficulties.
The Prophet SAW said: "Hasten to give sadaqaat because calamities cannot precede them." (Mishkat)
On another occasion he said: "Sadaqah appeases the Lord's anger and averts an evil death." (Tirmidhi)
ENJOIN THE GOOD AND FORBID EVIL
"You are the best Ummah ever raised up for mankind, you enjoin Al-Maruf (all the good things Islam has ordained) and forbid Al-Munkar (all the evil that Islam has forbidden), and you believe in Allah." (Al-Imran: 110)
And man cannot avert loss unless he does these four things:
"By the time, verily man is in loss. Except those who believe and do righteous good deeds and recommend one another to the truth and recommend one another to patience." (Al-'Asr)
The Prophet SAW said: "By Him in Whose Hand my soul is, you must enjoin what is good and forbid what is bad, or Allah will certainly soon send down punishment from Himself to you. Then you will make supplications and they will not be accepted." (Tirmidhi)
CREATE UNITY AMONGST THE MUSLIMS
A strong connection with Allah and His Book (the Quran) can unite the Muslims.
Allah Ta'ala says: "And hold fast all of you together to the rope of Allah (ie the Quran) and be not divided." (Al-Imran: 103)
Despite your differences, refrain from prejudices, rashness, bad mannerism and backbiting. Have sincerity, open-heartedness and respect for humanity. Stay clear of baseless talk, useless discussions and arguments. No matter what the circumstances, come war or peace, joy or sorrow, do not allow the pace of your constructive work to slow down . Don't let the present trouble result in inaction.
DO NOT LOSE HOPE, TRUST IN ALLAH SWT
All gain or loss lies only in Allah SWT's control.
Allah Ta'ala says: "If Allah helps you, none can overcome you, and if He forsakes you, who is there after Him who can help you? And in Allah alone let the believers put their trust." (Al-Imran: 160)
Along with taking practical steps and putting in the utmost effort for constructive work and self-improvement, keep complete faith and trust in Allah's Being and Powers.
ALLAH'S PROMISES ARE TRUE
Avoid hopelessness and always remain hopeful of Allah's help.
"O you who believe! If you help Allah, He will help you and make your foothold firm." (Muhammad: 7)
"Verily Allah will help those who help His (Cause). Truly Allah is All-Strong, All-Mighty." (Al-Hajj: 40)
"So do not become weak, nor be sad, and you will be superior if you are indeed believers." (Al-Imran: 139)
But if we abandon Allah's Way then how should His help come?
NOT JUST TALK BUT SUBSTANTIAL WORK IS REQUIRED
What is actually needed is a change in our behavior. Instead of slogan-chanting, verbosity, and emotionalism we need to work on substantial grounds. Instead of wallowing in regrets and voicing condemnation we must equip ourselves with the armour of knowledge, research and technology. Making research and knowledge our provisions, we must make ourselves stronger in the economic and defense fields and prepare ourselves realistically to meet the challenges in every field.
"Verily, Allah will not change the condition of a people as long as they do not change their state themselves." (Ar-Ra'd: 11)
Like a poet said: Allah changes not the state of a nation Who thinks not of changing its own state
LET US ANALYZE OURSELVES:
* Have I stopped wasting my time? Have I left idleness, laziness and negligence?
* Has my pace in constructive activities (efforts towards personal reformation, hastening in good deeds) increased?
* Has there been any change in my routine (recreation, parties, shopping, useless chatting) ?
* Have I started worrying about fulfilling my obligations, acts of worship and responsibilities?
* Have I left moral vices such as backbiting, lying, fighting and breaking trusts?
* What have I sacrificed to serve Allah's Deen?
* If death overtakes me today, am I ready to meet Allah Ta'ala?
* If we cannot change ourselves, how can we expect the conditions in the world to change?
By Affan Ghani Shaheen
Submitted by a Mujahid