Striving unblocks your path. Lessons from Surat al Ankabut
In the last ayah of Surat Ankabout Allah Almighty mentions jihad:
As for those who strive (Jahadu) in Our cause, We shall surely guide them to Our Ways. (29:69)
As this is a Makki surah, and Muslims were not permitted to fight or retaliate against the attacks they endured from the Quraysh with aggression in Makkah, it is clear that this jihad is not referring to the battlefield but striving to spread the truth and to tolerate the hostility of the enemies of Islam and the tribes around Makkah. It is referring to spreading the words of Allah Almighty.
Jahada means to exhaust your efforts to do something. You might do jihad for yourself, for your business and your worldly concerns, that is jihad in the linguistic sense, but in the Shariah jihad means to strive for the sake of Allah Almighty.
In order for this to happen, foremost you need a pure intention, then the action and extra effort which is the jihad.
Being with Allah
The rest of the ayah says:
Indeed Allah is with those who do good. (29:69)
This is known as ma’iyah, being under His protection and care. He is looking after us as we are striving to deliver the truth and stay on the path. Do not worry but ensure you fulfil the requirements.
Remember this is very valuable.
When the Prophet (peace be on him) was migrating from Makkah to Madinah and they stopped in the cave with Abu Bakr and Abu Bakr was terrified the enemy would find them, and Prophet (peace be on him) told him not to worry, ‘Allah is with us’.
‘Do not worry, Allah is with us.’ (9:40)
If you have this certainty that Allah is with you, you have peace in your heart and peace in your life – nothing can terrify you or harm you. You are with Allah and He is with you. You have His protection, care, mercy and forgiveness.
Let’s strive to fulfil our duties and obligations towards Allah Almighty. Let us see more of His care, especially in these last ten days.
Duas to make on Lailatul Qadr
Tonight might be Lailatul Qadr, as per the authentic narrations that it is likely to be in the odd nights of the last ten nights. What should you recite?
Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her) narrated:
I asked: “O Messenger of Allah! If I realise Lailatul Qadr (Blessed night), what should I supplicate in it?” He (peace be upon him) replied, “You should supplicate:
Allahumma innaka ‘afuwwun, tuhibbul-‘afwa, fa’fu ‘anni
O Allah, You are Most Forgiving, and You love forgiveness; so forgive me.” (Tirmidhi)
Forgiveness and wellbeing
Al Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him), the uncle of the Prophet (peace be on him), came to the Prophet (peace be on him) and said:
“Ya Rasulullah, teach me a dua.”
The Prophet (peace be on him) said, “O my uncle, say: allahumma inni as’ aluka al’afiyah
O Allah, I ask you for afiyah
Al Abbas thought about this for a while, and then he came back after three days and said (paraphrased): “Ya Rasulullah, this du’a seems a little short. I want something big.”
The Prophet (peace be on him) said: “My dear uncle, ask Allah for afiyah for you cannot be given anything better than afiyah.” Tirmidhi.
It is a simple dua. But it has a deep meaning, because it means you want protection from any distress, grief, hardship, harm and tests.
If you secure afw (forgiveness) you secure akhirah and with afiyah (wellbeing) you secure the dunya.
May Allah Almighty grant us afw and afiyah. Ameen.
Shaykh Haytham Tamim
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