Ghazali on Contentment (part 2)

After Ghazali talked about the topic of mahabba (love) for Allah – the fruits of mahabba and true mahabba, and increasing our love for Allah and His Messenger, He followed it with this topic of contenment (rida), as they are closely linked. Loving Allah and being content with what He destined go together. If you truly love Allah, you cannot be discontented with His will. Otherwise your love is not true love. Ghazali is saying that people of Jannah and people of dunya who are close to Allah have full contentment with what Allah has destined for them. This station of contentment is a very spiritual station – it is reflected in actions, but its essence is in the heart. The essence of rida is loving Allah. The more you love Allah the more satisfied you are with what He provided you with. The test of satisfaction is how someone responds with what was destined for them, for example if they fall ill or are struck by a calamity. Do they complain and resent why it happened to them and make comments such as ‘Why did this happen to me?! What did I do to deserve this?!’ If so, they need to repent for this. We cannot complain when Allah sends us afflictions – big or small- because He is the All Wise. There is hikmah (wisdom) in everything He does, so there is no room to complain even if we do not understand the wisdom with our limited intellect. Is crying a sign of discontent? Feeling pain or having tears in your eyes out of pain or loss you have suffered is not a complaint against Allah – it is natural and human. Very rarely, some companions and pious people reacted to calamities and loss without feeling pain, but … Continue reading Ghazali on Contentment (part 2)