Abu Hurairah (Radhiallaahu anhu) reports: Rasulullah (Sallallaahu alaihi wasallam) said: “There are three people whose “Du’aa” is not rejected; the fasting person until he breaks the fast, the just ruler, and the oppressed person, whose ‘Dua’ Allah lifts above the clouds and opens unto it the doors of heaven, and Allah says: “I swear by My honour, verily I shall assist you, even though it may be after some time.”
In ‘Durr Manthur’ it is reported from Aa’isha (Radhiallahu anha) that, when Ramadan appeared, the colour of Rasulullah’s face used to change. He then used to increase his “Salaat”, become even more humble in his “Duaas” and exhibit even more fear of Allah. According to another report, he hardly ever lay down in bed until Ramadan came to an end. Further, it is stated that the angels carrying the Throne are commanded in Ramadan to leave aside everything else and recite “Aameen” to the “Duaas” of those who fast. Numerous are the Ahaadith stating that the fasting person’s ‘Du’aas’ are answered. When Allah has so promised. and his truthful ‘Nabi’ (Sallallaaho alaihe wasallam) has informed us, there should be no doubt whatsoever about the truth of these reports. Yet it is strange that, in spite of this, we still find such people who apparently do not get what they pray for. They ask and do not receive; but this does not mean that their prayers have been rejected. One should at this point understand the significance of a ‘Dua’ being answered.
Rasulullah (Sallallaho alaihe wasallam) has informed us that, when a Muslim prays for anything from Allah, on the condition that he does not pray for breaking off from his near of kin or for anything sinful, he definitely receives one out of the following three things: he gets the exact thing which he asked. If that is not received, then Allah either removes from his path some great calamity in exchange for what he desired, or the reward for that thing for which he prayed is stored for him in the Hereafter. Another Hadith states that on the day of “Qiyaamah”, Allah will call his servant, and say to him: “O my servant, I used to command you to ask of Me and promised to answer. Did you beg of Me? The servant will answer: “Yes I did.” Then Allah shall reply: “You did not put forth any prayer which has not been accepted. You prayed that a certain calamity should be removed, which I did for you in the wordly life. You prayed that a certain sorrow should be cast off you, but result of that prayer was not known to you. For that, I fixed for you such and such a reward in the Hereafter. Rasulullah (Sallallaho alaihi wasallam) says that the man shall again be reminded of each and every prayer and he shall be shown how it had been fulfilled in the world or else what reward had been stored for him in the Hereafter. On seeing that reward, he shall wish that not a single prayer of his had heen answered on Earth, so that he could receive the full reward only in the Hereafter.
Yes, prayer is indeed very important, and to neglect it at any time is a matter of great loss. Even when the outward signs seem to indicate that our prayer is not answered, hope should not be lost. Even from the lengthy Hadith at the end of this booklet, it is clear that Allah in answering prayers considers first of all our own good and welfare. Should Allah find that granting us what we beseech from Him is in our welfare and interest, He grants it, otherwise not. Actually it is Allah’s favour on us that we do not always get what we ask for because very often, due to our lack of understanding, we beg for things that are not beneficial at a particular time.
Here I must draw your attention to the fact that men as well as women suffer from a bad habit of cursing their children in their anger and affliction. Beware of this. As preordained by Allah, there are certain occasions when whatever prayer be made is immediately answered. So sometimes, due to our own stupidity, the child is cursed and when the effect of that same curse comes upon the child and lands him into a calamity, the parents go about crying and wailing. Rasulullah (Sallallaho alaihe wasallam) commanded us not to curse ourselves, our children, possessions, or servants. It is just possible that the curse is uttered at a time when all requests are granted, especially in Ramadan, which is replete with such special “Mustajaab” (accepted) moments. Hence, in this month, great care should be taken.
Ibn Masood(Radhi Allaho anho) reports that on every night of Ramadan, a crier from the heavens calls out: “O you seeker of good, come near; O You seeker of evil, turn away (from evil) and open your eyes.” Thereafter that angel calls out: “Is there any seeker of forgiveness, that he may be forgiven? Is there any one with a prayer, that his praver may be heard? Is there anyone wanting anything, so that his wish may be fulfilled?”
Lastly, it should be borne in mind that there are certain conditions under which prayers are accepted; in the absence of these, prayers may be often rejected. Among these is the use of ‘Halaal’ food: When ‘Haraam’ is consumed, the prayers are not accepted. Rasulullah said: “Many a greatly distressed person lifts up his hands to the heavens. praying and crying: ‘O Allah, O Allah.’ But the food he eats is “Haraam”, what he drinks is “Haraam”, his clothes are of “Haraam”; then in such cases how can his prayer be accepted?’
A story is related about a group of people in Kufa, whose prayers used to be always accepted. Whenever a (bad) ruler was placed over them, they used to pray for a curse upon him, which quickly came to destroy him. When Hajjaaj became ruler there, he invited these people amongst others, to a feast. After they had all eaten, he said: “I am no longer afraid of the curse upon me from these people, because “Haraam” food has now entered their stomachs.” (At this stage, let us ponder over how much “Haraam” is being consumed in these times, when people are even trying to make permissible the taking of interest money. We find out people going so far as to think that bribery and what is obtained through it is permissible, while our merchants very often justify their deceiving people when trading with them.)