The world is a place mired with trials and tribulations and tests, whereas the akhirah is free from all of this. There are so many things you could be afraid of in this world. So the ultimate reward for a believer is to be in a place where there is no fear and sadness. One of the most common ways that Allah describes Paradise is somewhere where there is no fear and no sadness. In contrast, the dunya is filled with fear and sadness.
If you didn’t have the afterlife to think about, the world objectively looks like a scary place, and it’s also a very short life. The word “dunya” means “the lowest place” in arabic. The poets have said that no one would concern themselves with the world except if they were spiritually blind.
The human thing to do when you are faced with all of the stress and fear of this world is to resort to ghaflah (heedlessness). We distract ourselves from all of it. Heedlessness is easier because it doesn’t require as much work as confronting your fears requires. But you can’t use this constantly without losing your connection to Allah. If you could just get one glance from Allah, it would cleanse the heart of all its fears and illnesses.
One of the states of heedlessness is only turning to Allah when you have nowhere else to turn to. This is good in that it helps you turn back to Him, but you should have a way of connecting to Him all the time.
Remind yourself that “This is from Allah.” Anything that comes from Allah is good. You have to do this for yourself, otherwise you won’t be able to cope. There’s a hadith that says, “How strange is the matter of a believer, because for the believer it’s all good.” Step back and look at your life, and realise that “it’s all good” no matter what situation you are in.
When Rasulullah salAllahualayhiwassalam’s son passed away while still a child, he salAllahualayhiwassalam said, “The tear will come out of the eye, the heart will feel sadness, but what comes out of the mouth is what pleases god. Indeed, O Ibrahim, we are bereaved by your departure.” The Prophet salAllahualayhiwassalam went through a whole year of sadness. Nowadays, we don’t even let people be sad for two weeks without telling them, “Fear Allah! Say some dhikr.”
When Prophet Yunus alayhissalam was in darkness in the belly of the whale, he cried out to Allah, “There is no God but You. Glorified are You. Indeed I have so many imperfections, ya Allah, but I’m turning to You.”
Allah places a light in the hearts of the believers. Before, they were dead, dark inside, but through this light, they can move through society, through life, because this light guides them.
Remember these 3 things:
- Know that God is in control. Admit that we, as humans, are weak and have no power and control over anything. This will make you feel less fearful and anxiety when you release your sorrow and let go.
- You come from a tradition: You are connected to all the righteous people of the past. That will not be shaken by the circumstances of the newer age that we live in now, nor will any trials and tribulations affect the contributions that righteous men and women have made to this world in the past. Use that as a source of comfort, know that you are not alone. You need to remind yourself and have confidence in who you are, in that you are part of Rasulullah (saw)’s ummah, that you are part of a long tradition.
- We are incredibly resilient. We can always bounce back. Allah does not place a burden upon you except what you can bear. Remind yourself that whatever you’re going through, I can handle it, and if it gets to a point that I can’t handle it, Allah will change it.
This is an excerpt of the notes taken by a Sout Ilaahi volunteer from Dr Omar Mahmood’s talk at The Sacred Path of Love 2015 entitled “Fields of Illusion: Confronting our Fears”.
Alhamdulillah, Shaykh Muhammad Mendes (USA) will be coming to Singapore on 1st and 2nd April 2017 for a series of spiritually invigorating, enlightening and soul-replenishing lectures and workshops.
Delve into the depths of your inner being, seek and find the Light of the Divine within yourself, and heal the brokenness inside through witnessing the Majesty and Beauty of Muhammadan Love with Shaykh Muhammad Mendes.
1 APRIL 2017, 9AM – 1PM, MASJID MYDIN AUDITORIUM
Prophetic Parenting: Raising God-Conscious Children in the 21st Century
Workshop Ticket Price: $28
Purchase here: http://propheticparenting.eventbrite.sg
1 APRIL 2017, 8PM – 10PM, MASJID SULTAN AUDITORIUM
Spiritual Awakening: Cultivating Positivity in Life
Lecture Ticket Price: $15
Purchase here: http://cultivatingpositivity.eventbrite.sg
2 APRIL 2017, 9AM – 1PM, MASJID SULTAN AUDITORIUM
The Way of Love: Joys and Realities of Marriage
Workshop Ticket Price: $28
Purchase here: http://wayoflove.eventbrite.sg
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Shaykh Muhammad Adeyinka Mendes embraced Islam at 17 years old and went to obtain a B.A. in Arabic Studies. Subsequently, he embarked on the study of traditional Islamic sciences for more than 20 years in Mauritania, Syria, and Nigeria, under the tutelage of scholars like Shaykh Murabit al Hajj, Shaykh Muhammad al Yaqoubi, Shaykh Muhammad an Ninowy, Shaykh Khalil Abdur Rashid, and Shaykh Mustafa Turkmani. He holds ijazaat in Islamic Jurisprudence, Islamic Spirituality, Theology, Prophetic Narrations, Qur’anic Exegesis, Logic, and Grammar.
Currently, aside from serving as the Founding Director of SacredService for Human Liberation, he also serves as the Imam of the Atlanta Masjid of al-Islam, and is a researcher and Lead Qur’anic Arabic Instructor at Fawakih Institute Atlanta.
He is a teacher, father, husband, servant of the community, and lifetime student of knowledge who devotes much of his time and energy to inviting people to live lives of spiritual and material significance, unite based on their shared humanity and appreciate their God-given diversity.