I want to focus on making this post a bit more on the personal side. It’s heavily based upon a series of conversations that I had with my brother one night as we were coming back from Isha salah at the masjid.
He started off talking about how this world is so meaningless. Subhan’Allah, my brother has a really inspiring way of phrasing his thoughts. The way he defined the various stages of life really resonated well with me and I’m sure it’ll have the same impact on you as well. Essentially, we’re all nothing. We started off as tiny snot like creations. Yet for some reason, we feel like we have the authority and pride to walk on this Earth as if we own it. Subhan’Allah from the time we are young children to roughly 11-12 years old all we’re concerned about is playing hide and seek with our friends or playing the newest game on the Nintendo Switch or PS4. After that, life progresses to the next stage where we as humans become so obsessed with our looks and our physical appearance. We become so heavily invested in this that we spend so much time in front of the mirror body shaming ourselves. This adolescent stage is then followed by the post-high school time when we become so invested in getting a college degree so that we can prepare to have a monetarily successful career in something most likely that isn’t even going to be enjoyable for us. After that, we’re thrusted into the workforce and are by default placed in the rat race we call the 9-5 career. This stage occupies a good 25-30 years. We’re busy preparing our retirement plans without ever stopping to think if we’re even going to make it that far. As retirement hits, we look back on our life and how it now lacks any purpose and meaning. For the vast majority of people, work takes up a significant portion of their lives and once it stops people are left without any direction or guidance in life. At this time, many people turn to Allah (swt) and try to live out their remaining years in the remembrance of Allah (swt). This is generally the flow of life and how a large chunk of people live their lives. Remembrance of Allah (swt) needs to be constant from the time we are accountable for our actions. Every decision we make in our life must be accompanied with the thought “Does Islam permit this?,” “What would the Prophet (saw) do?”
Subhan’Allah, our whole lives pass by in a blink of an eye. We’ve accumulated all the wealth and treasures in our worldly bank account, but what about our bank account for the Hereafter? Yes, we may be rolling in the Audi, BMW, and Benz in this world, but what about in the next? Will we even be fortunate enough to smell the fragrances of Paradise? What about our houses? We might have accumulated properties and plots of land in this world, but what about the Heavenly properties and plots. That’s the real estate each and every one of us should strive to achieve. The key to that plot and property however, is not the cramming nature of the ibadah we resort to in old age when we have nothing else to do. Life is a test. Just like final exams, we prepare weeks in advance hoping to pass with flying colors. But when it comes to this dunya’s exam, where are we? The masjids are empty. We are ignoring the basic Prophetic sunnah’s for this world (for men and women). Sinning has become so easy that we’re so desensitized to it and its evil proponents. Subhan’Allah all it takes is changing some of the negative and harmful habits early on and we can achieve a life of barakah and khayr. For example, if we know we struggle with waking up for Fajr, let’s make an effort to sleep early and set an alarm for waking up. Most of us sleep so late. Any task we do at night can easily be done in the daytime the next day. If we struggle with wasting time watching TV or engaging in too much useless socializing, we can easily limit these things through always remembering Allah (swt) and remembering not to waste time. Wasting time is one of Shaytaan’s deadliest tricks. We will waste our entire lives doing frivolous activities and socializing with people who we do not benefit from all because of our arrogance and insistence on ignoring the guidance of Allah (swt). Islam is such a beautiful way of life in that every single good thing can be turned into ibadah, all with the right intention. If the right intention is there, then surely Allah (swt) is All-Seeing and All-Knowing and will recompense us for those actions.
Alhamdulilah, realizing that life is short and uncertain in itself is a blessing. People live their entire lives in a state of heedlessness not realizing that life can end at any moment. If a person realizes this and plans to sincerely return to Allah (swt) then in a way that guidance is a gift from the Almighty (swt). He wants us to return to Him. He wants us to be successful in the akhirah. Why are we so arrogant and oblivious to His warnings?Without a doubt, we know what happens to those who transgress and live their lives without ever improving. Yet, we continue to tread down that same path. May Allah (swt) grant us all the taufique and guidance to be steadfast on His deen, Ameen.