What can you do when you’re worried about what’s coming?

There is palpable anxiety because we are facing the prospect of being locked-down again and people are understandably afraid and upset. We have already endured months cut off from our loved ones and being confined at home. The prospect of further restrictions on our movements, and its impact on our livelihood is causing much stress in our community.

What can we do?

Seek refuge

It’s the best thing in times like this is to follow the guidance of the Prophet (peace be on him) during calamities and tests.

He (peace be on him) taught us to seek protection against four specific things in his du’a.

Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that the Prophet (peace be on him) said:

Seek refuge with Allah from the difficulties of severe calamities, from having an evil end and a bad fate (or judgement) and from the malicious joy of your enemies. (Bukhari)

Allah is your source of protection

Although this hadith is short and concise, it has much depth. The first part teaches us that whenever you have a calamity turn to Him. Don’t complain and cry when you have not even sought His help.

Don’t try to face it alone. No matter what connections you have, or what status, it is not you, or your abilities, but Allah Almighty who can extricate you from your situation. Rely on Him while dealing with the means in order to cope with it in the best way.

It is a command to seek refuge in Allah, (ta’awwadhu billah).

Allah Almighty is our shield against everything that makes us feel troubled. He gives us peace, cure, relief and tranquility, so seek Him.

The Prophet (peace be on him) sought Allah’s aid by reciting the Quran and saying the istiadha (a’udhubillah min ashaytani rajeem) against these four things.

The prophetic dua


اللهمَّ إنِّي أعُوذُ بِكَ مِنْ جَهْدِ الْبَلَاءِ، وَدَرَكِ الشَّقَاءِ، وَسُوءِ الْقَضَاءِ، وَشَمَاتَةِ الْأَعْدَاءِ

Allaahumma ‘innee ‘a’oothu bika min jahdil-balaa’i, wa darakish-shaqaa’i,wa soo’il qadhaa’i, wa shamaatatil-‘a’ada.

O Allah, I seek refuge in You from the anguish of tribulation, the lowest depths of misery, the bad of what is decreed and the malice of enemies

The calamity which drains you

Jahdil bala جهد البلاء is the calamity which exhausts you, drains you and takes it all out of you. It leaves you paralysed – physically, metaphorically or mentally. If you seek Allah’s help, He’ll never let you down. He is always there for you.

Being among people of misery

Daraki shaqa درك الشقاء means being among people of misery, in other words people of jahannam. Shaqawa شقاوة is misery. Yow become a person of misery, when you do something bad, and you don’t repent or ask those who you wronged for forgiveness. The end result will be punishment. As in Surat Hud, Allah Almighty says:

May Allah protect all of us from that.

فَأَمَّا االَّذِينَ شَقُوا فَفِي النَّارِ

So but those who were miserable, they will be in the fire.

(11:106)

۞ وَأَمَّا الَّذِينَ سُعِدُوا فَفِي الْجَنَّةِ خَالِدِينَ فِيهَا

As for those who were happy, they will be in paradise abiding there for ever.

(11:108)

May Allah make us all from among the people of sa’ada (happiness).

Bad fate

Su’il qada سوء القضاء has two meanings – evil end or bad judgment. The later is having a bad opinion and making someone’s life difficult. Don’t jump to conclusions or make the wrong judgement and the wrong decisions. Shaytan’s whispers are misleading. Unless you have clear evidence, don’t have a bad opinion about others. Avoid Chinese whispers but at the same time don’t be naive.

The second meaning is having a bad destiny. It is part of our imaan to believe in destiny. And from time to time, we are tested by difficulties as part of our destiny. Ask Allah to protect you and your family from a bad destiny. Both meanings of su’il qada are valid.

The rejoicing of enemies

Shamata til a’da شماتة الأعداء is being laughed at or mocked by one’s enemies when you are in pain. It is doubly painful to experience this. Not only are you suffering from a calamity, but on top of this you see people enjoying the fact that you are suffering. May Allah protect us from this.

O Allah, who protects us from evil, and who facilitates all goodness, protect us from any evil and make us amongst the people of paradise and happiness and not people of misery.

Ameen

Delivered by Shaykh Haytham Tamim on 16th October 2020.

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Shaykh Haytham Tamim is the founder and main teacher of the Utrujj Foundation. He has provided a leading vision for Islamic learning in the UK, which has influenced the way Islamic knowledge is disseminated. He has orchestrated the design and delivery of over 200 unique courses since Utrujj started in 2001.His extensive expertise spans over 30 years across the main Islamic jurisprudence schools of thought. He has studied with some of the foremost scholars in their expertise; he holds some of the highest Ijazahs (certificates) in Quran, Hadith (the Prophetic traditions) and Fiqh (Islamic rulings). His own gift for teaching was evident when he gave his first sermon to a large audience at the age of 17 and went on to serve as a senior lecturer of Islamic transactions and comparative jurisprudence at the Islamic University of Beirut (Shariah College).He has continued to teach; travelling around the UK, Europe and wider afield, and won the 2015 BISCA award (British Imams & Scholars Contributions & Achievements Awards) for Outstanding Contribution to Education and Teaching.