Truth, Disbelief and Renewal of Faith

18 05 2011

From time to time, the levels of our faith do tend to dwindle. This weakness of faith manifests itself in degraded quality of acts of our worship, negligence in remembering Allah, feeling indifferent to His commands and, in general, us having a doubtful heart. Experiencing any of these symptoms or others akin to them is an indication of a weakness of faith that in turn may be depriving us of peace, tranquility, and closeness to our creator and sustainer.

This weakness or weariness of faith (Eeman), whether due to a weak understanding of truth, or the strength of external negative forces, is to be expected. Consider what the Prophet (SAWS) said in this context:

“Faith wears out in your heart as clothes wear out, so ask Allah to renew the faith in your hearts.” (narrated by al-Haakim in his Mustadrak and al-Tabaraani in his Mu’jam with a saheeh isnaad).

 

Here are a few steps that we can take immediately to renew our faiths.

Seek Allah’s Help

As the prophet mentioned in the aforementioned hadith, we should first and foremost ask Allah to renew and reinforce the faith in our hearts. We should make this call part of our regular Duas. In doing so, we should also be mindful of why we believe in the message of truth in the first place. We believe because we can relate the message of truth revealed in the Quran to the realities of this universe and what we find within ourselves and our hearts. We believe because as humans, a deeper intellectual and spiritual introspection has caused our hearts to resonate with the message of truth. We believe because after having pondered over the messages of the Quran, we comprehend them and have internalized them in our psyche. But more importantly, we believe in the truth of the Quran and Islam because of Allah’s unchallengeable, unequivocal and logical assertion as the creator, sustainer, and sole power of this universe. Thus, being convinced of His deity and majesty and the nobility of His Messenger and Prophet, we have consciously chosen to believe and live that message of truth.

Reinforce truth with knowledge

Next, let’s get clear about the meaning of truth as Islam has defined it. The clearer the message of truth in our hearts, the stronger our faith will be. Part of the renewal is therefore to actively engage in understanding the message of truth in our hearts and minds through studying the Quran, studying the traditions of the Prophet (SAW) as documented in the books of hadith and poring over the knowledge of known scholars who have helped elaborate on that message. The process of renewing our faith thus requires an active and personal effort to reach out to learn the various truths defined in Islam. The more we strive for it, the more we will increase our levels of awareness and faith.

Remember, the longer you keep your heart locked up from learning more, the less you will be able to reason and comprehend the message of truth, and the more you will rely on blind faith alone to live the message of truth.

As Allah says in the Quran,

“Will they not then ponder over the Qur’an, or is it that they have their locks on (their) hearts (which bar them from reason).” [47:24]

Beware of symptoms of rejection

Finally, be wary of what in your heart could be blurring your view of the message of truth. Imaam ibn Katheer, in his famous Tafseer ibn Katheer, mentions the reasons that prevent people from believing the message of truth. If any of those reasons are seeping into your psyche and have started to blur your vision and impacting your faith as a result, you need to actively step in and cleanse yourself of those symptoms. The reasons that ibn Katheer had mentioned included:

  • Kufrul-’Inaad (Disbelief out of stubbornness)
  • Kufrul-Inkaar (Disbelief out of denial)
  • Kufrul-Kibr (Disbelief out of arrogance and pride)
  • Kufrul-Juhood (Disbelief out of rejection)
  • Kufrul-Nifaaq (Disbelief out of hypocrisy)
  • Kufrul-Istihaal (Disbelief out of trying to make HARAM (illegal) into HALAL (legal)
  • Kufrul-Kurh (Disbelief out of detesting any of Allah’s commands)
  • Kufrul-Istihzaha (Disbelief due to mockery and derision)
  • Kufrul-I’raadh (Disbelief due to avoidance)
  • Kufrul-Istibdaal (Disbelief because of trying to substitute Allah’s Laws)

In Summary

Living the message of truth, therefore, requires us to abandon stubbornness (an attitude when we know deep in our hearts that we are wrong), denial (blindly ignoring facts), arrogance (thinking that accepting truth will demean us), hypocrisy (pretending to be someone while concealing the truth), mockery and derision (we mock truth and the righteous to go along with others) and avoidance (for one reason or another we try to avoid the message of truth). Once we eliminate these negatives that may have stained our hearts and open our minds to the message of truth, we will be on our way to renew our faith. In that process, we will also sense Allah in our lives and we will feel the sweetness of faith.

Let’s remember the saying of the Prophet as reported by Anas (May Allah be pleased with him):

“Allah says: ‘ When a slave of Mine draws near to Me a span, I draw near to him a cubit; and if he draws near to Me a cubit, I draw near to him a fathom. And if he comes to Me walking, I go to him running.” [Al-Bukhari].

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Du’a – Qur’anic Supplications

3 06 2009

Our Lord! Accept (this service) from us: For Thou art the All-Hearing, the All-knowing [2:127]

Rabbana taqabbal minna innaka antas Sameeaul Aleem

رَبَّنَا تَقَبَّلْ مِنَّا إِنَّكَ أَنْتَ السَّمِيعُ العَلِيمُ

البقرة :127]

 





Du’a – When Waking Up

31 05 2009

wakeup 

Alhamdulillahi lazee ahyaanaa b’ada amaatanaa wa ilaihil nushoor

‘All praise is for Allaah who gave us life after having taken it from us and unto Him is the Resurrection.‘





Du’a For Laziness and Incapability

31 05 2009

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The Prophet (salallahu alayhi wa sallam) used to make a du’a:

اللّهُمَّ إنِّي أعُوذُبِكَ مِن العَجزِ وَ الكَسلٍ

Transliteration: Allahumma inniy a’oothubika min al-ajzi wal-kasli
Translation: O Allah, I seek refuge in you from incapability and laziness.

 

Why is this du’a important? For two reasons:

  • Laziness is an attribute of munafiqeen. If this wasn’t bad enough, being lazy leads to procrastination, which leads to its own set of problems.
  • It’s common these days for people to say “I can’t do it.” Like “I can’t pray at work,” or “I can’t achieve X.” The Prophet (salallahu alayhi wa sallam) would say a’oothubillah to that kind of talk. Think about it!

Action Plan:

  • Memorize this du’a and make it every day in your sujood in every salaah. You have the Arabic, transliteration, and translation–you have no excuse not to do it!
  • Share your tips. What other tips and tricks do you use to overcome laziness and procrastination? Let us know in the comments!
References

Lazy Boy: A Khutbah by Muhammad Alshareef.





Dhikr (Remembrance) of Allah (SWT)

1 04 2009

A Selection Of Supplicationsdua___supplicating_to_allah_by_mismail1.jpg

The person who remembers Allah, is the person who keeps his eyes on his destination. The journey is arduous. The distractions are many. Satan and our own desires are constantly trying to steer us away from our goal. But, the stakes are extremely high. And a vigilant and wise person will never lose sight of his destination. Such is the person who remembers Allah all the time.

“Behold! In the creation of the heavens and the earth, and the alternation of night and day, there are indeed Signs for men of understanding– men who remember Allah standing, sitting, and lying down on their sides.” [Al Imran 3:190-191]

This remembrance or dhikr is itself the source of strength for the believer. According to the hadith qudsi, Allah says: “I am with my servant as long as he remembers Me.”

Abu Darda (radiallahu anhu) said: “For everything there is a polish and the polish for the heart is the dhikr of Allah.”
Indeed, there is no difference between the living and the dead, except with the dhikr of Allah; since [the Prophet ] said: “The example of one who remembers Allah and someone who does not, is like the example between the living and the dead.”
[Sahih al-Bukhari; 11:208, Muslim; 1:539]