The causes of our misery
Not only do they make this claim and not only do they utter mere words. No, Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) personally set for all a practical example and made others act accordingly. Through the life of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) and in the general character of the Sahabah (Radiallahu anhum) this is clearly seen. There are numerous illustrations in the chapters – Kitabul-Zuhd viz, the chapter on Abstinence and Kitabul-Riqaq in Hadeeth literature. If you wish to see sonie chosen examples you may see the few examples which I have noted down in my book – “Stories of the Sahabah.”
At this moment it is neither my object to mention those illustrations in detail, nor is there the necessary space. All that I seek to point out at this stage is that the trials and tribulations we face today are purely as a result of our own doings. It is the cause of our illness and its remedy is supplied by the Rasul of Allah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam)- a truthful, trustworthy and expert specialist physician, whose diagnosis and remedial medicine is neither faulty nor will it ever be proven to be incorrect. This physician has cleary diagnosed our ills and advocated exactly which medicine will be advisable as treatment. Now it is not the work of such a doctor to avoid the causes of the illness nor to treat the illness. If anyone of the patients do not pay attention to the already- given instructions, it is but to his own detriment.
Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said:
¡°Verily I have brought to you a law of Shariat which is clear, manifest.¡± He also said: ¡°I swear by Allah that I have left you on such a path which is clear, whereof the day and the night are equally clear. ¡°(Jami-ul-Fawaid)
Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) has given us clear instructions concerning each and everything. There is not a single thing concerning our worldly or spiritual life regarding which he had not given his opinion and guidance during his lifetime.
He said: ¡°Hasten towards the doing of virtuous deeds and do so prior to that time when such evils shall appear which shall be as the dark portions of the night. (Therein the distinction between good and evil will be difficult indeed). At such a time a man will wake in the morning as a believer and at night he will be a nonbeliever.And at such time he will rise in the morning as a non- believer and at night he will be a believer. He will sell his faith for a meagre amount of worldly goods ¡° (Targheeb)
Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) also said: ¡°Repent to Allah before the coming of death. Perform righteous deeds before becoming pre-occupied with duties. Remember Allah Most Glorified much, and give charity in secret and openly and in so doing strengthen your bond with Allah for indeed through these you shall receive rizq, you will receive help and so also shall your losses be made good.¡± (Targheeb)
Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) also said: ¡°Through charit3.,wealth does not decrease and whosoever pardons the unjust oppressor, for such shall Allah increase in honour. Hence forgive the oppressions and Allah will honour you.
And whosoever opens the door of begging for him is opened the door of poverty.¡± (Mu.jam Sagheer)
Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) also said: ¡°When my Ummat will begin to bear hatred in their hearts against the Ulema and when they shall make the construction of their bazaars and shopping places conspicuous and grand, and when they shall in contracting marriages consider only the possibility of accumulating wealth (instead of looking at the honesty, piety and deeds of suitable partners) then Allah will set four calamities over them: famine, the oppression of rulers, dishonesty of the officials administering their affairs and attacks by their enemies.¡± (Haakim)
Sayyidina Ali (Radiallahu anhu) said: ¡°The wages of sin is carelessness in Ibaadah, scarcity of rizq and lack of pleasure.¡± (Tarikh_ul-Khulafa)
Sayyidina Anas (Radiallahu anhu) relates:¡±I have served Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) for ten years. Not once did he ever confront me with a sour face. He said to me: .Always perform your wudu properly. By doing that your life on earth will be lengthened, nd your guardian angels will love you.. (Tabrani – Sagheer).
And perform some portion of your prayers at home. Through that the good in your home will be increased. And when you go home always greet your household members with salaam. Through that you will be blessed and also the people of your household.¡ If you really want to inform yourself of the deeni as well as worldly benefits of Salaah, as expounded by Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallaffi), then I suggest that you have a look at my booklet – “Virtues of Salaah.” Unfortunately mention cannot be made thereof here.
Anyway from all the Ahaadeeth we have quoted above, one thing becomes quite clear. That is that just as sin and evil deeds are the causes of calamities and afflictions, in the same manner obedience to Allah is the cause of success and prosperity in this world as well as in the Hereafter. Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said: “Verily Allah says: 0 son of Adam make time to serve me in Ibaadah and I will fill your heart with the feelings of sufficiency and satisfaction and I will remove poverty and want from you. If not then I will cause your hands to be continuously busy with preoccupation and 1 will not cause poverty to move from you.”
This statement comes from Allah, the Divine Creator, Lord of the Kingdoms and the All Powerful One in whose Hand lies the key to all the treasures of the world. Other traditions also corroborate this statement that success in this world is dependent upon Ibaadah. But what do we do? In order to earn the worldly wealth we disregard the times of Salaah – those very times which bring success!! So when we think that our successes can only be attained through disobedience to Allah, is it any wonder that our ills continue to increase? How is it possible to solve the problem regarding our daily piece of bread by being completely unmindful of Allah? – the Giver of our daily bread who had indeed warned that because of our neglecting lbaadah He will not cause poverty to be removed nor free the heart from preoccupying worries?
In a Hadeeth it is reported that Allah says: “If My Servants serve Me dutifully, I will send over them the rains by night when they sleep and over them the sun will continue to shine (so that in their affairs there will be no hindrance) and the sound of lightning will not reach their ears (so that for them there will be no need for fear and anxiety)” (Jami- us-Sagheer)
But in contrast what is our position through our own deeds? Daily from all corners we hear complaints of little or no rain; and when it does come it brings disastrous storms and floods with the most fearful results. In the‟ „Ihya” (of Imam Ghazzali) there is a story of a severe drought during the time of Nabi Moosa (Alayhis Salaam). Bani Israel went out into the desert for three consecutive days. Still the rains did not come. On the third day it was revealed to Nabi Moosa (Alayhis Salaam) that the rains did not come because of the fact that among the congregation there was a man responsible for carrying and spreading gossip about others. That was the reason for their prayers remaining unanswered. Nabi Moosa (Alayhis Salaam) then asked to be informed as to the identity of that person so that he could be separated from the congregation. Allah replied: “How is it that I prohibit you from tale-bearing and gossip and now you want me to be guilty of the same? I shall not point out the person responsible.” Thereupon Nabi Moosa (Alayhis Salaam) addressed his people and exhorted them all to repent of talebearing and gossip. He made them seek forgiveness for all sins. Very soon the rains came down. (Ihya)
Imam Sufyan Thowri (Rahmatullah Alayh) relates that such a severe drought came over Banj Israel once. So severe was it that because of lack of food the people picked up dead animals from the dirt-heaps to eat. It finally became so bad that people even began to eat human flesh. The people became so bewildered and troubled that for days and days they proceeded to the deserts and onto the mountains to pray for rain. Then Allah spoke to the Prophets of that time through Revelation: “Even f your tongues become dry from all the prayers you say (while calling on Me) and even though you lift
up your hands in prayer till they reach the very heavens, I shall not show any Mercy to any of you who cry and wail so bitterly until you people discard all your unjust dealings and unfair treatment among yourselves.” Similar stories are numerous in the books of history and Ahaadeeth.
Indeed, there are many Ahaadeeth which tell us that the attainment of success and prosperity in this world and in the Hereafter comes through the doing of deeds of righLousness. They also clearly indicatç that the losses and blows suffered in this world and in the Hereafter is as a result of evil deeds committed. To quote all those Ahaadeeth is not possible for me and neither is it my objective.
What I want to show here is: If the Rasul of Allah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) is indeed considered by us to be a truthful informer, what great injustice are we not doing to ourselves by knowingly allowing ourselves to be involved in those things which, according to him, most certainly causes our destruction? Why do we still adopt this line of action which causes ourselves great harm and misery? And yet our tongues still proclaim loudly that we are Muslims? We are exactly like that sick man who suffers from diarrhoea. While his stomach continues to run because of open bowels, he still continues to takepurgative medicines and laxatives. This further aggravates his illness. Now he complains that his stomach does not stop running. Let someone ask this toolish man: Dear brother, you treat your diarrhea with purgatives. Tell me: Are these medicines supposed to stop the running stomach or to increase it?