Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Patience in Islamic Perspective

Patience in Islamic Perspective
This is how I understood Patience ( Sabr) in Islamic Perspective. The five stages of Journey to Akhirah called Patience ( Sabr)
1.      Iman – The Faith and Belief
2.      Entering complete into Islam, in all spheres of life, the only color the color of Allah.
3.      You will be tested like Prophet Ayub Peace upon Him, like Prophet Yusuf Peace Be Upon Him.
4.      Sabr – when you remain steadfast in these test you will rewarded with Jannah.
5.      This is Complete meaning of Patience in Islam, Patience will take you to Jannah.
When I started looking at this subject of patience in Arabic Sabr, I got many references from Book of Allah Quran and when go through it, it has explained and defined very well. Patience in Islamic perspective is steadfastness as defined in Surah Al Asr Quran 104, a short but very concise in meaning and depth. But there are many more references specially two stories of Prophet Ayub Peace be Upon Him and Prophet Yusuf Peace be upon Him, whom Allah The Exalted praised in His Book for their Patience , determination, steadfastness on path of Allah. This is patience, the steadfastness and determination to stand tall against all aggression and temptations of evil that can come in different form to different people to weaken their determination, to weaken their faith. These are testing times when Iman, faith is tested.  It will be tested when you enter into Islam fully,
In Quran Allah very ordered to the believers, to become complete believers, don’t follow the temptations of Shaitan, follow the color of Allah, the only color acceptable on the Day of Judgment.  Islam is full and complete way of life, when you follow this in day in night, in customs and tradition and every aspect of your life. Then and Then only your Iman ( Faith ) is complete and acceptable on the Day of Judgment.
Narated By 'Abdullah bin Hisham : We were with the Prophet and he was holding the hand of 'Umar bin Al-Khattab. 'Umar said to Him, "O Allah's Apostle! You are dearer to me than everything except my own self." The Prophet said, "No, by Him in Whose Hand my soul is, (you will not have complete faith) till I am dearer to you than your own self." Then 'Umar said to him, "However, now, by Allah, you are dearer to me than my own self." The Prophet said, "Now, O 'Umar, (now you are a believer)."
Bukhari Volume 008, Book 078, Hadith Number 628
Quran (2:208) Believers! Enter wholly into Islam and do not follow in the footsteps of Satan for he is your open enemy.
God demands that man should submit, without reservation, the whole of his being to His will. Man's outlook, intellectual pursuits, behaviour, interaction with other people and modes of endeavour should all be completely subordinate to Islam. God does not accept the splitting up of human life into separate compartments, some governed by the teachings of Islam and others exempt.
O you who have believed, enter into Islam completely [and perfectly] and do not follow the footsteps of Satan. Indeed, he is to you a clear enemy.
Quran (2:138) Say: “Take on Allah’s colour.” And whose colour is better than Allah’s? It is Him that we serve.
This verse can be translated in two ways. One of these is: 'We have taken on Allah's colour.' The other is: 'Take on Allah's colour.' On the eve of the advent of Christianity the Jews followed the practice of bathing everyone who embraced their religion. This ritual bath signified that all his previous sins had been washed away and that he had adopted a different colour for his life. This practice was subsequently taken over by the Christians and is termed 'baptism'. Not only converts but even new-born babies were baptized. The Qur'anic remarks here refer to this institution. The Qur'an says in effect: 'Of what use is this formal baptism? What really is worth doing is to adopt the colour of God, and it is not water that gives one this colour but actual service and devotion to God.'
When become true believer, and follows path of Allah in all spheres of life then come the difficulties, when Shaitan ( Evil) in different form come close to you and try to deviate you from the path of Allah by saying, this is small thing , that is no problem. Some time your family, sometime society , customs and traditions which make you weak every day. These are all temptations of Shaitan ( Evil), don’t follow his path, Shaitan( Evil) will destroy your Hereafter.
When you started following the path of Iman you will be tested. Faith (Iman) is tested in many way,
Allah (swt) says in the Quran that which means:
  “Do people think that they will be left alone because they say: "We believe," and will not be tested. And We indeed tested those who were before them. And Allah will certainly make (it) known (the truth of) those who are true, and will certainly make (it) known (the falsehood of) those who are liars, (although Allah knows all that before putting them to test).” [Quran, Al-Ankaboot (The Spider) 29:2-3]
 “Do you think that you will enter Paradise before Allah tests those of you who fought (in His Cause) and (also) tests those who are As-Sabirin (the patient ones, etc.)?”  [Quran, Al-Imran (The Family of Imran) 3:142]
 ·Allah (swt) also told  us that  we will be tested with good and evil, fear, hunger, lost of lives…ect
 “You shall certainly be tried and tested in your wealth and properties and in your personal selves, and you shall certainly hear much that will grieve you from those who received the Scripture before you (Jews and Christians) and from those who ascribe partners to Allah, but if you persevere patiently, and become Al-Muttaqun (the pious ) then verily, that will be a determining factor in all affairs, and that is from the great matters.” [Quran, Al-Imran (The Family of Imran) 3:186]
 “Be sure we shall test you with something of fear and hunger, some loss in goods or lives or the fruits (of your toil) ……”[Quran, Al-Baqarah (The Cow) 2:155]
This is what Allah SWT says in Quran, these tests comes from every direction, these are the temptations of life for human being when he loves something more than Allah and His Prophet in his daily life, those who remain steadfast ( patience) and never deviate from the path of Allah, Allah has promised them the Jannah, where they will live forever, what a good destination that was.
Sura # 104 - The Declining Day -al 'Asr
In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful!
I swear by the declining day, that man is a certain loser, save those who have faith and do righteous deeds and counsel one another to follow   the truth and counsel one another to be steadfast.
In this Surah an oath has been sworn by the Time to impress the point that man is in sheer loss and only those people are an exception from the loss who are characterized by four qualities:
(1) Faith.
(2) Righteous deeds.
(3) Exhorting one another to truth.
(4) Exhorting one another to patience.
Let us consider each of these parts separately in order to fully understand the meanings.
This short surah of three verses outlines a complete system for human life based on the Islamic viewpoint. It defines, in the clearest and most   concise form, the basic concept of faith in the context of its comprehensive reality. In a few words the whole Islamic constitution is   covered and in fact, the nation of Islam is described in its essential qualities and its message in one verse only: the third. This is the   eloquence of which Allah alone is capable.
Faith is the great root of life from which goodness springs in its various   forms and to which all its fruits are bound. What does not spring from   faith is a branch cut from a tree: it is bound to fade and perish; it is   indeed a devilish production, limited and impermanent! Faith is the axis   to which all the fine fabric of life's network is connected. Without it   life is a loose event, wasted through the pursuit of yearnings and fantasies. It is the ideology which collects diversified deeds under a consonant system, following the same route and geared to the same mechanism, possessing a definite motive and a predetermined goal.
Counseling one another to follow the truth and to steadfastness reveals a picture of Islamic society which has its own very special entity, a   unique inter-relationship between its individual members and a single   destination and which fully understands its entity as well as its duties.   It realizes the essence of its faith and what it has to do of good deeds   which include, among other tasks, the leadership of humanity along its own path. To execute this tremendous duty, counseling and exhortation becomes a necessity.
Counsel and exhortation to be steadfast are also a necessity because the   sustenance of faith and good deeds and catering for right and equity are   the hardest tasks ever to carry out. This makes endurance utterly   indispensable. Endurance is also necessary when adapting oneself to the   Islamic way of life, when confronting others, when afflicted with maltreatment and hardship. Steadfastness is necessary when evil and   falsehood triumph. It is necessary for traversing the length of the   route, putting up with the slowness of the process of reform, the   obscurity of road-posts and the lengthy road leading to the destination.
Imam Razi has cited a scholar as saying: I understood the meaning of Surah Al- Asr from an ice-seller, who was calling aloud for the attention of the people repeatedly in the bazar: Have mercy on the one whose wealth is melting away! Hearing what he was crying I said to myself: this then is the meaning of Walasri innal-insana lafi khusrin. The age-limit that man has been allotted is passing quickly like the melting away of ice. If it is wasted, or spent in wrong pursuits, it will be sheer loss to man. Thus, swearing an oath by the Time what has been said in this Surah, means that the fast passing Time is witness that devoid of these four qualities in whatever occupation and work man is spending his limited span of life, he is engaged in bad bargains. Only such people are engaged in good bargains, who work in the world, characterized by the four qualities.
Now, let us consider the four qualities on the existence of which depends man’s being secure from loss and failure.
Of these the first quality is Iman (Faith). Although this word at some places in the Quran has been used in the meaning of only verbal affirmation of Faith
In fact, true believers are those who believed in Allah and His Messenger, then entertained no doubt. (Surah Al- Hujurat, Ayat 15).
Those who said: Allah is our Lord, and then stood steadfast by it. (Surah HaMim As-Sajdah, Ayat 30).
True believers are those whose hearts tremble with awe, whenever Allah is mentioned to them. (Surah Al-Anfaal, Ayat 2).
Nay, (O Prophet), by your Lord, they can never become believers until they accept you as judge for the decision of the disputes between them, and then surrender to your decision with entire submission without the least resentment in their hearts. (Surah An-Nisa, Ayat 65).
Besides exhorting to the truth, the other thing which has been declared as a necessary condition for keeping the believers and their society secure from loss is that the members of the society should enjoin patience upon one another. That is, they should enjoin upon one another to bear with fortitude and steadfastness the difficulties, hardships, trials, losses and deprivations which befall the one who adheres to the truth and supports it. Each one of them should encourage the other to bear up against adversity steadfastly.
This is story of Prophet Ayub Peace Be Upon Him, when he tested with loss of wealth, children and health, he lost everything still praised Allah in Allah conditions.
Iblis reminded wife of Ayub Alaihisallam  her of the days when Ayub had good health, wealth and children. Suddenly, the painful memory of yeas of hardship overcame her, and she burst into tears. She said to Ayub:
"How long are you going to bear this torture from our Lord? Are we to remain without wealth, children or friends forever? Why don't you call upon Allah to remove this suffering?"
Ayub sighed, and in a soft voice replied:
"Iblis must have whispered to you and made you dissatisfied. Tell me, how long did I enjoy good health and riches?"
She replied, "For eighty years"
Then Ayub asked, "How long am I suffering like this?"
She said, "for seven years"
Prophet Ayoub Peace Be Upon Him Prayed to Allah;
"Verily, dsitress has seized me, and You and the Most Merciful of all those who show Mercy. So We answered his call, and We removed the distress that was on him, and We restored his family to him (that he had lost) and the like thereof along with them - as a mercy from Ourselves and a Reminder for all who whorship Us" Quran 21:83-84               
"Truly! We found him patient. How excellent (a) slave! Verily, he was ever oft returning in repentance (to us)." [Quran:38:4]. , 
During these times we must remember Allah more, pray harder, and be more thankful instead of being dissatisfied with our condition. We should praise and thank Allah for every condition that he tests us with. As we know these are the times when Satan tries to work on us the most by playing with our minds, emotions, and weaknesses. Allah would never forget to reward a servant for such a great task.

May Allah give us the faith and the patience when we are tested. Ameen.
This is story of Prophet Yusuf Peace Be Upon Him, how he remain steadfast, patient when Shaitan tempted him with evil act.
" And she, in whose house he was, sought to seduce him (to do an evil act), she closed the doors and said: "Come on, O you." He said: "I seek refuge in Allâh (or Allâh forbid)! Truly, he (your husband) is my master! He made my stay agreeable! (So I will never betray him). Verily, the Zâlimûn (wrong and evil-doers) will never be successful."
And in the next ayah 12:24 ;
" And indeed she did desire him and he would have inclined to her desire, had he not seen the evidence of his Lord. Thus it was, that We might turn away from him evil and illegal sexual intercourse. Surely, he was one of Our chosen, guided slaves. "
Prophet Yusuf was certainly possess the righteous conduct by Allah S.W.T's will, thereby, he remain innocence. He had been able to defeat his nafs (sexual desire) just because of the fear of Allah S.W.T. Today in this modern era, Muslim youth are exposed with evil culture, particularly the western secularism culture which apparently could challenge our nafs.  Muslim Youth in this material world are in the critical stage where they are easily influenced by vices that propagated by the west. Can we steadfastly be able to adhere our Islamic Value by enjoining good and forbiding evil ?  Allah says in Al-Quran that we (Muslims) are the best Ummah (Khairul Ummah) and the purpose is to invite toward good and forbid evil as in surah Ali Imran : 104 ;
" Let there arise out of you a band of people inviting to all that is good, enjoining what is right, and forbidding what is wrong: They are the ones to attain
The story of Prophet Yusuf is the best example for us to follow, on how the fear of Allah S.W.T has able to overcome carnal desire and destroyed evil. For those who strive for the path of Allah s.w.t, definitely He will shows the right ways, as in Surah Ankabut : 69 , Allah s.w.t says ;
"And those who strive in Our (cause),- We will certainly guide them to our Paths: For verily God is with those who do right."
Not so do those who show patience and constancy, and work righteousness; for them is forgiveness (of sins) and a great reward.
This is story of Sad bin Abi Waqas , 'Umar Farooq  was very impressed by the strength of his faith and the firm and truthfulness. He could never forget that incident which depicted the degree of his devotion to Islam. He had accepted Islam as a young boy; this disturbed and saddened his mother very deeply because he had given up the faith of his fathers and forefathers. She tried in many ways to bring h m back into the fold of Kuffir. When nothing worked she used the last resort of mothers to emotionally blackmail her obedient and loving son. This is something, which makes their determination falter and their resolutions fail. She went on a hunger strike and declared she would not eat until her son came back to the religion of his forefathers. She vowed that rather die than see her son become a Muslim.
Sa'd bin Abi Waqas was unnerved when he saw her stubbornness, but pure faith had taken strong roots in h s heart, so his strong feet, firmly planted in Islam, did not totter. His mother was close to death by starvation and thirst. Displaying strong determination and courage he said to her:
"Dear mother if you had a hundred lives within your body, and each one of those hundred lives were to leave your body in front of my eyes, even then I would not recant and give up my faith, in Islam. It is your wish whether you want to eat or not; as for myself, I will not leave my Prophet g." Seeing that it was of no use and her son was stubborn as a rock, she finished her hunger strike. This resolution and determination of Sa'd bin Abi Waqgs  RadiAllah unho has been made immortal:
Yusuf Ali
"But if they strive to make thee join in worship with Me things of which thou hast no knowledge, obey them not; yet bear them company in this life with justice (and consideration), and follow the way of those who turn to me (in love): in the end the return of you all is to Me, and I will tell you the truth (and meaning) of all that ye did." (31:15)
From the Seerah of the Prophet (s):
‘Ata ibn Rabah related that he heard Ibn ‘Abbas say: “Shall I show you a woman of Paradise?”I said: “Yes, indeed.” He said: “A black woman came to the Prophet, peace be upon him, and said: ‘I suffer from epileptic fits, and because of these, (at times) my body becomes uncovered. Would you invoke Allah, the Exalted One, to cure me of this disease? ‘ The Prophet, peace be upon him, said: ‘If you wish, you can be patient and you will attain Paradise (for this suffering). But if you prefer, I will pray to Allah, the Exalted, to cure you of it?’ The woman said: ‘I will be patient,’ then added: ‘I become uncovered (when I have fits), so invoke Allah for me that I do not become uncovered. ‘ So the Prophet, peace be upon him, prayed for her.” [Source: Fiqh-us-Sunnah, volume 4, #1a]
Story of  ‘Urwah Ibn Al Zubair
‘Urwah Ibn Al Zubair had an operation, and the doctor amputated his leg.  One friend came to visit him. ‘Urwah thought that the fried came to pacify him for the loss of his leg. So ‘Urwah told the visitor: If you came to give me condolence for the loss of my leg, I already submitted to Allah with patience to reward me for its loss.  The guest told him, I came to inform you that your son fell down in a stable, and the animals stepped over him, and he died one hour ago. ‘Urwah said: O Allah! You took one child, and left me many…You took one organ from my body, and left me many organs…O Allah! You tested me with my body, and you were kind to leave me with good health.  You tested me with the loss of my son, but you were kind in leaving me the rest of my children.

During times of deep trial, despair, and sadness, Muslims seek comfort and guidance in the words of Allah in the Qur'an. Allah reminds us that all people will be tried and tested in life, and calls upon Muslims to bear these trials with "patient perseverance and prayer." Indeed, Allah reminds us that many people before us have suffered and had their faith tested; so too will we be tried and tested in this life.
"Seek Allah's help with patient perseverance and prayer. It is indeed hard except for those who are humble." (2:45)
"And be steadfast in patience, for verily Allah will not suffer the reward of the righteous to perish." (11:115)
They are those on whom (Descend) blessings from Allah, and Mercy, and they are the ones that receive guidance.” Surah Barkrah
This is how I understood Patience ( Sabr) in Islamic Perspective.
        I.            Iman – The Faith and Belief
      II.            Entering complete into Islam, in all spheres of life, the only color the color of Allah.
    III.            You will be tested like Prophet Ayub Peace upon Him, like Prophet Yusuf Peace Be Upon Him.
    IV.            Sabr – when you remain steadfast in these test you will rewarded with Jannah.
      V.            This is Complete meaning of Patience in Islam, Patience will take you to Jannah.

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