Thursday, May 15, 2014

Dua' - Weapon of the Believer

Presented by: Sister Sara

Dua’ - Weapon of the Believer

Allah Ta’ala has clearly stated in the Qur’an the purpose of creating mankind:
وَمَا خَلَقْتُ الْجِنَّ وَالْإِنْسَ إِلَّا لِيَعْبُدُونِ
“And I have not created the Jinn or the mankind except to worship Me”
[Surah adh-Dhariyaat – 51:56]

It is evident from this verse that the purpose of our creation was so that we could submit to Allah Ta’ala and worship Him in the many ways He has shown us. The mercy of Allah is such that He made Islam a complete way of life for us and has made worshiping easy by creating Direct forms of worship and Indirect forms.

The earning of a livelihood, eating, family life and socialising are examples of our daily lifestyles, yet Allah has made it possible for these to be worships also. On the other hand, the five prayers, charity, fasting and pilgrimage are just a few examples of direct worship.

Nevertheless, there is an act of worship which has been proclaimed by our beloved Prophet
صلي الله عليه و سلم to be the core and essence of worship. He صلي الله عليه و سلم has said:
الدعاء مخ العبادة
“Du’a is the essence of worship”
[Sunan Tirmidhi]

And in a Qur’anic verse Allah states:
فَادْعُوا اللَّهَ مُخْلِصِينَ لَهُ الدِّينَ
“So call upon Allah making your worship pure for Him”
[Surah Ghaafir – 40:14]

Du’a, which is known in the English language as supplication, is the core and essence of worship. In other words, it is the core and essence of the reason for which we were created. There are many qualities in supplicating to Allah and many rewards for it and therefore it has been held in such high rank in the religion of Islam. So much so, that a person who fails to supplicate to Allah becomes deserving of the anger of Allah.

The Messenger of Allah صلي الله عليه و سلم said:
من لم يسئل الله يغضب عليه
“The person who does not ask from Allah (supplicates); Allah Ta’ala becomes angry with him”
[Sunan Tirmidhi]

It is apparent from just these two Ahadeeth that the status of supplication (Du’a) in Islam is exalted. It is an act which Allah loves and is the dearest act in his sight:
‏ليس شيء أكرم على الله تعالى من الدعاء
“There is nothing dearer to Allah Ta’ala than Du’a”
[Sunan Tirmidhi]

Therefore, the act of supplicating to Allah is an important one and one that requires much awareness. It is an act that contains the many qualities loved by Allah Ta’ala and therefore is dearest to him from all the other acts.

Du’a is an act where a servant turns towards his Lord, Allah, and begs Him for all his needs and also for the needs of others. It is an act within which the servant shows great humility, humbleness and need towards Allah Ta’ala. These qualities are also mentioned in the Qur’an in an extremely exquisite manner:

وَعِبَادُ الرَّحْمَنِ الَّذِينَ يَمْشُونَ عَلَى الْأَرْضِ هَوْنًا
وَإِذَا خَاطَبَهُمُ الْجَاهِلُونَ قَالُوا سَلَامًا
وَالَّذِينَ يَبِيتُونَ لِرَبِّهِمْ سُجَّدًا وَقِيَامًا
وَالَّذِينَ يَقُولُونَ رَبَّنَا اصْرِفْ عَنَّا عَذَابَ جَهَنَّمَ إِنَّ عَذَابَهَا كَانَ غَرَامًا
“And the slaves of ‘The Most Merciful’ are those who walk upon the earth with humbleness. And those who spend their nights for their Lord in prostration and on their feet (in prayer). And those who say, ‘O our Lord! Turn away from us the punishment of Hell; indeed its punishment is torturous”
[Surah al-Furqan – 25:63-65]

In these final verses of Surah Furqan, Allah Ta’ala mentions the qualities of those of His creations which He personally classes as the “Servants of Rahmaan.”  If we pay special consideration to these verses then we can deduce that within each quality there is the quality of humbleness. In actual fact, when Allah say’s refers to these people as His slaves it shows the first signs of humbleness. The slave of any person is humble and submissive to Him. He does as He is told and is obedient towards His master. Similarly, walking upon the earth with humbleness reflects the same quality. Further on, Allah Ta’ala mentions that when ignorant people talk to them they say words of peace and walk away. This means that they are not arrogant or proud in replying back or making their point known. Instead they are humble enough to walk away and say words of peace.

In the next verse Allah mentions another quality of these special servants of His as being the ones who spend their nights in prostration and prayer. This is an indication of humbleness, where the servant worships Allah in the night where no one can see him and is humble towards Allah. However, despite this great worship they supplicate to Allah asking Him to save them from the fire of hell showing a great sign of humbleness, that despite their worship they are still humble and fear the hellfire.

These verses, and those that follow it, clearly indicate to us that Allah loves the quality of humbleness. So much so, that the Prophet صلي الله عليه و سلم has told us that whoever becomes humble for the sake of Allah Ta’ala then Allah will raise the rank and status of such a person and a person that adopts pride is a person who is trying to take the quality of Allah and for that Allah shall throw him in the hellfire.

This quality is mentioned in another verse that refers to supplicating to Him:
ادْعُوا رَبَّكُمْ تَضَرُّعًا وَخُفْيَةً إِنَّهُ لَا يُحِبُّ الْمُعْتَدِينَ
“Invoke your Lord with humility and in secret. He likes not the aggressors.”
[Surah al-A’raaf – 7:55]

Another quality which is loved by Allah, is that His servants are dependant towards Him. He loves that His servants turn towards Him and ask only from Him. Allah states:
يَا أَيُّهَا النَّاسُ أَنتُمُ الْفُقَرَاء إِلَى اللَّهِ وَاللَّهُ هُوَ الْغَنِيُّ الْحَمِيدُ
“O people! You stand in need of Allah but Allah is free of all needs, worthy of all praise.”
[Surah al-Fatir – 35:15]

Besides these two qualities there are many other qualities that lie within supplicating to Allah.

1. Faith
Whilst supplicating the believer has faith in Allah although He has never seen Him. He also has the faith that it is Allah that provides and gives.

2. Belief (Tawakkul)
Different from having ‘faith’ in Allah, a believer has this understanding that He should only ask from Allah and it is only Allah that provides for Him.
وَادْعُوهُ مُخْلِصِينَ لَهُ الدِّينَ
“And invoke Him only making your religion sincere to Him”
[Surah al-A’raaf – 7:29]

3. Communication
During supplication a believer is in communication with Allah Ta’ala and Allah Ta’ala finds it a pleasure when His servants turn towards Him and ask from Him.
Allah states:
وَقَالَ رَبُّكُمُ ادْعُونِي أَسْتَجِبْ لَكُمْ إِنَّ الَّذِينَ يَسْتَكْبِرُونَ عَنْ عِبَادَتِي سَيَدْخُلُونَ جَهَنَّمَ دَاخِرِينَ
“And your Lord said: “Invoke Me, I will respond to your invocation. Verily! Those who scorn My worship they will surely enter Hell in humiliation!”
[Surah Ghaafir – 40:60]

4. Tears
Allah loves those of His slaves that turn to Him with tears in their eyes and ask from Him in the humblest of manners. It is, as mentioned, a quality of His beloved servants.

5. Closeness to Allah. Allah has stated:
وَإِذَا سَأَلَكَ عِبَادِي عَنِّي فَإِنِّي قَرِيبٌ أُجِيبُ دَعْوَةَ الدَّاعِ إِذَا دَعَانِ فَلْيَسْتَجِيبُوا لِي وَلْيُؤْمِنُوا بِي لَعَلَّهُمْ يَرْشُدُونَ
“And when My slaves ask you concerning Me, then I am indeed near to them. I respond to the invocations of the supplicant when he calls on Me. So let them obey Me and believe in Me, so that they may be led aright.”
[Surah al-Baqarah – 2:186]

In summary, Du’a (supplicating to Allah) is an act of worship that has been classed as the core of entire worship due to the many qualities it possesses. A person who supplicates to Allah in its true sense and method will become a close servant of Allah who will encompass the many characteristic Allah Ta’ala seeks in His slaves.

Du’a can be the weapon and strength of a Muslim or it can lead to His destruction. Allah loves those who turn to Him and ask from Him and is angered with those who turn away from Him.
There are many verses in the Qur’an as well as many Ahadeeth that refer to the act of supplicating to Allah and as to how Allah responds to the supplications of His slaves. These verses show us that at the time of supplication a servant is drawn close to Allah due to him communicating to Allah. And the one who remembers Him is remembered by Him.

May Allah give us all the true understanding of the status of Du’a and its importance in every Muslim’s life. May He give us the inclination to seek from Him alone and to seek from Him often. Aameen.

PRACTIACAL TIPS (From Sh. Yasir Qadhi’s book):

What to do when making du‘ā’:
  • Focus on the du‘ā’, concentrate on the fact that you're “talking” to Allāh, and make sure that your heart is really into it.
  • Supplicate during one of the times of response.
  • Have a meek heart, full of humbleness, softness, an awareness of our smallness in the Presence of Allāh.
  • Face the qiblah (direction of the Ka'bah).
  • Be in a state of wudhu.
  • Raise your hands to Allāh.
  • Start the du‘ā’ with praise to Allāh, exalting and glorifying Him, using His most perfect Names and Attributes (al-Asmaa' al-Husnaa')
  • Follow it up with salutations to the Prophet Muḥammad (sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam).
  • Repent and beg of Allāh's forgiveness for past sins.
  • Finally make your du‘ā’, being persistent in asking of Him what you wish, calling upon Him in a state of fear and hope, performing tawassul (as defined and outlined within the Shari'ah).
Examples of Tawassul:
  • Through Allāh's Names and Attributes – calling upon Him with them, knowing and understanding their meanings.
  • Mentioning one's state – e.g. I am ill; I am old; I am in despair; I am poor; I am heartbroken, etc.
  • Through good deeds – remember the Hadith of the three men in the cave, who made du‘ā’ and mentioned their deeds (preferring parents over rest of family; fearing Allāh and abstaining from zina; giving the labourer his invested wages)?
Note: Please read the book for further details!

Some of the Times of Response:
  • After performing wudhu'.
  • When the adhān is called; between the adhān and iqaamah
  • During the ṣalāh: After takbiratul-Ihraam; during the ruku'; after standing up from ruku'; during the sujuud (the moments when we are closer to Allāh than we'll ever be!); sitting between the two sajdahs, before the end of the ṣalāh – i.e. after you've finished the tashahhud and before the tasleem.
  • After the ṣalāh.
  • When the rain falls (this is perfect for those of us living in very rainy countries! :D ).
Other Points of Interest:
“One of the strongest factors that aids a person's du‘ā’ in being accepted is that he expects, in fact, being certain, that Allāh will of a surety respond to his du‘ā’. When he expects the best from Allāh, then Allāh treats him in the way that he expects, and this is from the Perfection of Allāh's Nature, and an indication of His Beautiful Names.”
“Just ponder over the meanings of this one Hadith in order to get a glimpse of the vast treasures of the One whom you ask, for the Prophet (SAW) said that Allāh Said:
O My servants! If the first of, and the last of you; if the jinn of you and the men of you, were to stand on one plain and ask Me, and I gave every single person what he wanted, then all of that would not decrease from My Kingdom, except like a needle (decreases the amount of water) when it is placed in the ocean (and then taken out).”
  • Do good deeds! The more you obey Allāh, fulfilling the obligatory commandments and striving to do voluntary acts of worship, the higher your chance of getting your du‘ā’ accepted!
  • A delay in the response of your du‘ā’ can actually be a means of drawing closer toAllāh, if you take the correct understanding and act upon it; i.e. you don't give up in frustration saying, “Oh, my du‘ā’ will never be answered!” – rather you realize thatAllāh withholds what it is you're asking for out of His Divine Knowledge, Wisdom, and Justice – it may be that a thing you like is bad for you, and a thing that you hate is good for you.

Dua - Weapon of the Believers

youtube video by Sh. Yasir Qadhi

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