Guidance Prayer – Salat al-Istikharah

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Ali Albarghouthi

Channel: Ali Albarghouthi

Episode Notes

What do we do when we are unsure about the future? About our next big move? How do we know if what we will be doing will bring us joy and success or trouble and harm? Rather than rely on omens, the stars, psychics, or a lucky penny, Islam teaches us to seek consultation and guidance from Allah. Here we discuss the importance of this prayer in our lives, how to perform it, and the signs that we should look for to make the best choices in our lives.

Episode Transcript

© No part of this transcript may be copied or referenced or transmitted in any way whatsoever. Transcripts are auto-generated and thus will be be inaccurate. We are working on a system to allow volunteers to edit transcripts in a controlled system.


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In a family law number two who want to stay in a one star funeral 102 below him in Cerulean fusina was a tiama Nina mahila who Fela mobila a woman you ugly fella ha de la washer to Allah in Lola who had the hula sharika was shadow no Mohammed Abu Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa ala alihi wa sahbihi wa sallam

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in Iran howdy Nikita Bala heeta Allah wa hiren howdy Haji Muhammad sallallahu alayhi wa sallam was Sharon Moreno to her wakulla the 13 wakulla biotin Bala wakulla gonadotrophin are All praise belongs to Allah the Most High we thank him and we seek His help and aid and ask Him to forgive us. And we seek His refuge from the evil of ourselves in the sense that we can indeed whomsoever Allah guides, no one can lead us astray, and whomsoever Allah lead astray, no one can guide and ever witness that there is no one worthy of worship except Allah alone. And then Hamad sallallahu alayhi wa sallam is his slave and messenger. Indeed, the best of speech is the book of Allah. And the best of guidance

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is the guidance of Muhammad sallallahu alayhi wa sallam and the worst of religious matters are those that are innovated, and every religious innovation is evident every day is misguidance. And every misguidance will be in Hellfire and bad.

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One of the prayers one of the soldiers that the messenger sallallahu alayhi wasallam used to emphasize in teaching and recommend was the prayer of guidance. So that is the heart of the prayer where we are seeking Allah as guidance and consultation, in what we are doing. And there is nothing that will illustrate better the importance of that Salah that prayer. Then, the description that the companions of Muhammad sallallahu alayhi wa sallam had given to how he used to teach it, they used to say, cannot Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam You are the Mona Lisa hora de fille de Cali, her karma You are the Mona surah. Terminal Quran. It says the messenger used to teach us is to ha to

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pray is to ha, in all matters, as he would teach us a part of the Quran so looked to the dedication, look to the emphasis that he's the law he was placed and attached to this folder as if he is teaching part of the Quran. And why so because we as humans, we need that prayer and that Salah we as humans, need Allah subhanahu wa tada to guide us through our own affairs. And because this Salah is tied is fundamentally tied to our belief in Allah subhanho wa Taala to the aid that we espouse as Muslims. What is this need that we have as As humans, we are fascinated by the future fascinated, but why? By what lies next. And we are all so anxious about it, we are filled with anxiety about

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what is going to happen next to us. And especially when we are taking a next step, when we are doing something we wonder, is this thing going to bring us happiness, or misery? Is it going to bring us pain or relief? Is it going to actually improve our lives or otherwise? And if it is going to bring us some type of pain, something that we hate? Can we do something to avoid that harm to avoid that pain? So we wonder, and we speculate, and sometimes because of our anxiety, we start looking to signs around us things that perhaps can divine the future things that perhaps can unlock what is going to happen next, signals, symbols, anything that is around us, sometimes we make these things

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up. So and we do that individually and collectively as cultures. So individually, you hear people talking about the Lucky Penny, the lucky shirt, the lucky shoes, the lucky article of clothing, a lucky day, a lucky month, unlucky part of the city, there is luck and lack of luck that we attach to things around us this thing predicts that what's going to happen next is going to be good or this thing is going to predict or predicting that what's going to happen next is going to be evil. So we do that as individuals, but we also do it as communities as people. You look at almost every culture, without exception every culture on the face of this earth. Every people on the face of this

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earth have developed something some science that they do say foretell the future. Tell us what is going to happen next. Some people

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Look into the stars. Some people read the palms, some people read the coffee, right after you drink some coffee, what remains in the cup, they read the cup of coffee to predict the future. They look into animals, they look into colors around them. All of these they read the trails, of animals, all of these things ancient and modern. People are using cultures are using to predict the future and tell them what isn't going to happen next to them.

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And this unfortunately, even happens in Muslim countries among Muslims themselves, the ancient Arabs, they had a total euro era.

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This is when they would look at the flight of the bird. And they were to go into embark on a journey they were they would go outside and try to disturb a bird and see what direction is it going to fly? Where is it going to fly? Is it going to fly to the right, then that is going to be an auspicious journey and as an auspicious business, is it going to fly to the left, then this is not going to be an auspicious occasion and in auspicious journey, so do not proceed. So they took the flight of birds as an indication of a goat what is going to happen next. And it is from that act that we get that word in Arabic of bad omens, and the messenger sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said of Pharaoh to

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shake up the aura to shake up the aura to shake bad omens, believing in bad omens is shook and he repeated that three times of fear to shake. It is shaken Allah subhanho wa Taala

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then he continues in the Hadith wanna mean in unknown among us, except that he has that feeling sometimes in his or her heart? Well, I can use the Hebrew hula hooping debacle. But Allah subhanho wa Taala removes that type of feeling by tawakkol by relying on Allah subhanho wa Taala. Let's explain this hadith. Briefly. Why was a clear assurance or believing in bad omen? Why is it shared? Because it's attributing power, attributing influence to something other than Allah subhana wa Tada, when you start believing that this thing predicts the future, you attach power to it, it will have influence on you, you will start to hope from it, you will start to fear it. And Allah subhanho wa

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Taala did not sanction, sanction any of these things are signs that they can predict the future and tell us what is going to happen tomorrow. So we are fabricating if we believe in these things, we are attaching power and influence to them and fabricating a lie against Allah subhanho wa Taala. And for that reason, it is sure it's a minor type of shift.

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And the prophets, a lot of you send them says, but for many of us, or most of us or all of us, sometimes we get that feeling that that particular animal or color or day or person might be bad luck, because of something that happened after we encountered them.

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And for that, he said, yes, that feeling can enter your heart, but it can also go away. And how can we chase that feeling away? How can we eradicate it by having tawakkol on Allah subhanho wa Taala by trusting Allah, Allah is the only one who knows the future, Allah is the only one who has control. And Allah subhanho wa Taala is the one who can protect this particular thing that we are afraid of, or think and bring us good or bad luck has simply no power. So if we believe in that, then we're going to proceed with what we want to do without paying any sort of attention to that thing that is frightening us or maybe is predicting that we're going to be facing some happy times.

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So complete reliance on Allah subhanho wa Taala eradicate belief in bad omens.

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And some people instead, you know, and this again happens, unfortunately, in Muslim countries and among Muslims, instead of you know, consulting objects around them, they go to a person, and they think or believe that that person can tell them what's going to happen in the future. And whether we call this person and instead or we call them a shaman in Muslim countries, it does not matter. If you go to a person and ask him should I be married on that particular day? And he tells you yes or no, because it's an auspicious or inauspicious day, should I you know, engage in that type of transaction or trade on that particular thing? Or with that particular thing? And he says yes, or

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says no, because it's an auspicious then you are consulting a fortune teller, no matter what title he or she gives to themselves, you are consulting a fortune teller, and the messenger sallallahu alayhi wa sallam has said, matter are often out care Hanan for sadaqa who be meyerhold socket careful. rabina on Xena Allah Mohammed

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If you go to a fortune teller and ask him about something and you believe them in what they tell you, then you indeed had disbelieve in what has been revealed to Muhammad Sallallahu Either you are sending them. Why would you have disbelieved? Because it is Allah subhanho wa Taala, who knows the unseen who knows hidden matters.

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And we confess that in in the prayer of istikhara, as we shall see, it is only Allah who knows hidden matters. So when you start believing that someone else knows it, they have disbelieved in Allah subhanho wa Taala, and in the message of Islam.

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And now, we might think sometimes that we in the modern age, you know, have transcended you know, have, you know, gone beyond believing these superstitions, but we have not so many of people living in modern countries in developed countries, especially those who have rejected the dry materialism, of modernity, they resort to what they call sort of spirituality and that type of spirit. Spirituality involves, you know, consulting the zodiac signs, this starts to tell them, what type of people they are, what is their day going to be like? What should they do?

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Why should they associate with so these tours tell them they dictate?

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they consult them and they trust in them as a believer trust in Allah subhanho wa Taala.

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And you see when you sometimes you know, you, you turn on, you know, the TV or you flip through the newspaper, ads for psychics, psychic readers, you pass by, and there is a shop for a psychic reader and people enter there and they pay money and consult them. And they ask him about the future. This is happening in modern developed countries. So the human psychology does not change. It's the same psychology of old, it is eager to know what is going to happen tomorrow. It's afraid of what is going to happen tomorrow. And so it's going to grasp anything that is around that claims that it can tell it, it can comfort it.

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And here we see the mercy the great mercy of Allah subhanho wa Taala he did not leave us to our own selves to our own anxieties. But he told us through the prayer of guidance through the prayer of St. hora, do not look to anyone else but look to me ask me and I will guide you. Ask me and I will guide you that you are that we will read in solitude istikhara

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the beginning of it confirms our belief in Allah subhanho wa Taala and his vast knowledge

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and his power.

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We say Allah hum Iniesta hero Kabir al MC. So Allah I am asking you to guide me by virtue of your knowledge. Well as the devil can be pedantic and I asked you to give me power and ability by the virtue of your power. Well as a locum in public law, the man I asked you from your great bounty, for in nichetto Tirumala. Because you have the power and ability and I have none. What level

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and you have knowledge and I have none. Well until I learn who you are, and you know all hidden matters You are the one who knows the unseen. So we are asking Allah subhana wa Taala by his names and attributes, beseeching him by his names and attributes, power and knowledge. We're admitting that he knows everything and that we have no knowledge, he has all power and we have no power. So as helpless beings we are asking Allah the Almighty, the old merciful to guide us. So our hearts are attached to a last panel with either Our tawakkol is with Alice pan, our reliance is on the last panel with either our minds and our hearts are not enslaved by creative beings or creative things.

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They have been freed.

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We have been liberated from earthly matter matters, and only have one master and this master is Allah subhana wa Tada. So look at the mercy of Allah subhanho wa Taala did not leave us to the influence or to be under the mercy of other human beings of other creative beings. He wanted us to be under his mercy, the Most Merciful, so he liberated us from everybody else.

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And this is what happens when we turn to Allah subhana wa tada in that type of prayer. We become his slaves, his servants, not the slaves and servants of anyone else. And that is a great, great bounty from Allah subhanho wa Taala.

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A holy holy had our lives

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You want to confess the pharaoh who in the hall for over him?

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And hamdu Lillahi Rabbil aalameen have done can Kathy don't even move out? I can see you all Sunday. Well, certainly manasu Lee Mohammed.

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He was so happy he was so

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bad.

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How do we perform Salatu istikhara the prayer, the guidance, prayer or the prayer soliciting guidance from Allah subhanho wa Taala

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where the messenger sallallahu alayhi wa sallam says in the Hadith either hadoken been Emily saleor Cara Kathy Newman here in Florida, it says when one of you intends to do something, let him pray torque has to voluntary records other than the obligatory or casts. So we understand here that to perform so that is the harder we will pray to a rock has

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and then there is a doula involved in it and then it comes at the conclusion of the solder. Now some of the older man said that he will read this

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after the solder after you say this Salaam salaam aleikum wa rahmatullah salaam aleikum wa rahmatullah and then you will say that, and we will go through the Doha inshallah, shortly,

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other Automat has said, the minority of the ordinate said that you will read that in the Salah, when you finish your Tisha hood. And before you say the sedan. So the majority of the scholars said you say it, after you finish the solar after the sedan minority of scholars have said, you say between Tisha hood and salon, either way you say it, and it is acceptable, insha Allah, but as I said, most of the arguments that you will see it after the conclusion of the scholar after you give this enough

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to rock house that you perform, and the Prophet did not specify any particular sewers, that you should read within that solar, so any sewers that you read, are acceptable. So there is no evidence to suggest that there's any particular stories that should be rent.

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And the Prophet said, that you would do or you will pray the Salah, in all matters, in all matters. And that is part of the run of Allah subhanho wa Taala part of His mercy, and all matters big and small. As long as you are confused about two issues, do I do a or b? Or you intend to do something but you are not certain you're afraid of the consequence of that act? You're not sure about it. So you're asking Allah subhana wa tada that perhaps Allah can guide you should I do this that might appear good right now, but I'm not sure about the consequences later. So in all matters, big and small,

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it is recommended that you pray is to harder as long as as as various this hesitance and uncertainty. And of course, I mean, we're not going to pray is too hard in matters that Allah has prohibited, or Allah dislikes, the harem, or the crew, because already we know what Allah thinks about them. And also, we're not going to preach to her about the obligations or the recommended Allah already, or we know what Allah thinks about them, Allah loves them. So we should do them or it's recommended that we do them. And we should stay away from the Haram Allah hates that.

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But when it comes to these matters, we can pray istikhara

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about the means

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to these recommended or obligation of obligatory acts. And also at times when there is possession.

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You know, there are two obligations, and you can only perform one of them which one of the two should I perform then you pray is because Allah can help you to perform one of them.

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So you seeking guidance, in priority? Or in the means, as we said, so for instance, you're not going to praise the college Should I go to hedge the hedge? That is an obligation Should I perform? Of course you should. But what groups should I go with? Who should accompany me on that journey, you can pray? istikhara for that, you don't praise the harder asking Allah Allah, should I study Islam more?

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Should I you know, seek knowledge. Allah loves that. So we're not going to praise too hot about that, but you can praise taharah regarding where should you do that in this country or in that country? What books should you read? What shade or what teachers should you go with? That is the type of staccato that you can pray.

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Now, some people ask and it's a very important question. They say

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Sometimes I don't have the opportunity to pray, I have to decide immediately. And for some of the sisters they cannot pray at times

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and they have to decide within hours or within days. What should they do? What should we do when we don't have the opportunity to pray? So that leads to Salah. All the scholars have said that if you don't have the time, you can repeat the dua itself. You can repeat just that itself. And the remainder of that day that we promised that we're going to go through the remainder and that is

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alone in Quinta Alamo and the handle Umbro Allah if you in your knowledge you know that this matter what you send me he bismi and you specify what that matter is. Tyrone Lee, he Dini, when the ice hockey Betty embryology, de Chile, it is better for me it is good for me, in my religion in my livelihood, and the consequence of my affairs near and far from God, why a sitter who leads somatically fee that make it happen for me.

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Make it happen for me, so don't bully and make it easy for me. And then bless it for me. When Quinta Alamo and Heather Umrah Sharon Lee Dini Omaha, she was at Emory, ideally, he will agilely. And if you know, in your knowledge, that this thing is bad for me, in my religion in my livelihood, and the consequence of my affairs near and far, for three, four, and he was with me, and then take it away from me and take me away from it, what the real hyphema can so more of the day, and ordained for me good wherever it might be, and make me content with it.

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And make me content with it. And we have to understand that last part of the Hadees because it's important. Why do we say Allah if this matter is bad for me, take it away from me, and take me away from it. Because there is a recognition there and admission there that we might like things that are not good for us. And that we are attached so attached to them that maybe Allah will take it away from us. But still our hearts have not left them. Still our hearts longed for them, even though they are bad. So we're asking Allah Allah, Allah, if this thing is not good for me, not only Allah should do, I asked you to take it away from me but also I don't want my heart to be attached to it. So take

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and remove my heart away from it.

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And your Allah, whatever is good for me ordain it, and make me happy with it to be content with what Allah ordained to be contented with what is good for us, is a great name of allah subhana wa Taala. So when we are praying istikhara we have to keep open minds and open hearts. Sometimes we approach that prayer, already have decided what is good for us and what is bad already, I've decided this is the thing that I want, and I want nothing else. And that's not the way to approach a lot of istikhara we have to approach it with humility, with believe that what Allah subhanho wa Taala has what Allah knows, is better than what we know what Allah has is better than what we have. So to

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truly be open, and say that if this thing is not good for me, then I don't want it, even though I may have feelings for it. And if this thing is good for me, then this that's the thing that I want, even though I may dislike it at this moment, but this is the thing that I want from Allah subhanho wa Taala. So we have to approach it with such open mind and heart. And it's important to have presence of heart, Hadoop, one of the most important things or conditions for the acceptance of data and that so that is

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one of the most important things is hold Oracle for your heart to be present attentive, aware of what you're saying close to Allah subhanho wa Taala while you are saying it, and then Allah subhana wa Taala will accept. So that to listen to her and that prayer from you.

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Now

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what should we rely on after we pray? What should we rely on to know

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what path we should take? And that issue, honestly, is a confusing one for so many people. And I want to what I what I want to emphasize today

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is that we should not rely on dreams.

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And we also should not rely on personal comfort in Shiraz.

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Let me explain.

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A lot of us believe somehow that when we praise the horror, we should await a dream and that dream is going to guide us that dream is going to reveal to us the things that we should do.

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But when you go back to the hobby that we just talked about

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How do you have istikhara that teaches us how to perform it. And you don't find the mention of dreams in it at all.

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And it's quite problematic to rely on dreams. Why so, because not all of us dream.

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So some of us are going to pray that and be a waiting and waiting for a dream and it will never come. And that only increases our anxiety, anxiety about what to do and anxiety about the prayer itself, because we will believe that it was fruitless, where is the dream that is going to tell me what I'm supposed to do? It's not coming.

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But the Prophet sallallahu Sallam did not talk about any dream.

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Further, what is also problematic about a dream is that

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a lot of us, you know, when we consult, when we ask insula to list the heart or consulting about things that are very important to us, we're anxious, we are worried, we desire something very strongly. So when we see a dream, that dream could be simply the manifestation of our own desires. So for instance, take you know, for instance, an example of someone or prayed is to harbor a job, you know, somewhere distant, and he's afraid of air travel. So when he slept, when he sleeps, he dreams about that he's on a plane, and so then it's going to crash.

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Is that a sign is that an indication that he should not take that job simply because he saw that dream? No,

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is simply his anxiety showing up when he's asleep. So because we dream and our dreams are also a lot of times are manifestations of our own feelings, we can start mistaking these dreams for science from Allah subhanho wa Taala. And that is a problem, because they are not science from Allah. There's simply our own self talking back to us.

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And even when we see a dream, dreams are not easy to interpret.

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A lot of times, we need someone with skill, someone with a gift to interpret that dream for us. So brothers and sisters, do not rely on a dream. It is not a primary way for you to decide what to do in your life. It might be a secondary, but only a secondary and a minor sign. That's not the major sign. So what is the major sign? Is it feeling comfortable about that thing? I asked Allah for? No, it is not. Why? For the same reasons we talked about when we talked about dreams. First of all, the Hadid does not mentioned if you are comfortable with this or uncomfortable with that, then that is a sign that Allah is guiding you. It doesn't talk about personal comfort or in Shiraz.

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And also feeling comfortable with something or uncomfortable with something could be also our emotions, restating themselves after the prayer.

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We love something so much so we pray and ask Allah guidance, should we should I do this or not? Should I marry this person or not? And then after the Salah, we still have that strong feeling that I should marry this person or this strong feeling I shouldn't marry that person.

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Is this feeling from Allah subhanho wa Taala? Or is it simply our own emotions resurfacing. And we read it wrong. We read it wrongly, we mistake our emotions for a sign from Allah Subhana within and that is also very problematic.

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So we shouldn't look for comfort, comfort, in fact can come something could be good for us, we might dislike it. And we will only be comfortable with it after we actually have engaged or started or have chosen that thing. And sometimes we will only find that comfort after that thing is over. So don't pay attention to

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what should we pay attention to we should pay attention to what Allah subhana wa Taala brings closer to us or takes away from us what happens in reality in real life. That is what we're asking Allah upon. And that is what the Hadees is telling us. That is if this is this thing is good for me. Yeah, Allah bring it closer to me. And if this thing is not good for me, Allah take it away from me. So if we see things coming closer, are easier doors are opening, then that is a sign that that thing is good for us. On the other hand, if we see the opposite doors are closing, that thing is running away from us. No matter how we choose it, it's running away from us. And that is a sign that that thing

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is not good for us. And let's take an example a very quick example.

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Suppose a person

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is confused about two offers two job offers one in the east and one in the West.

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And he or she they want to pre istikhara about that matter. So some of the old timers said you can stay

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First, you can sell first and decide you choose between these two things. You either choose the job in the east or job in the West. And then when you pray is to harder.

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You say when you name it, by Allah, if this thing is good for me, the job in the east, if that is your choice, or if you've chosen the job in the West, if that is your choice, so you choose one of them. And that would be the object of your istikhara. Some others scholars have said, No, you delay consult insulting people you delay consultation, till after you have prayed is too hard. So if there's a job in the eastern job in the West, you simply pick one of them.

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According to your best judgment and assessment, pick one of them, maybe it's a job in the east. And so you will pray and say you Allah, if the job is this job in the east is best for me, then bring it closer to me and make it easy for me and bless it for me. And if it is not been taken away from me as the Hadid states.

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And then after you finish that is, the harder you go and consult other people. So some scholars have said, consult, choose and pray. Others have said, choose pray and then consult. And we're gonna say both of these things can work because that it doesn't specify one scenario over the other, you should consult first or consult later. And at times, actually, it's easier to consult first it comes naturally you will receive opinions from people before you're able to pray. At other times, it's easier to pray first, and then consult people whatever it is, whatever is convenient, do it by the will of Allah subhanho wa Taala. But this is what happens. You specify you have to specify either

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this thing, or that thing, don't leave it or Allah, should I do a or should I do B pick a or pick B? Then after you pray, and after that you have consulted, then look at what is happening. You've asked about the job in the east if consulted about that. And then you see that things are getting easier.

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No people want to over there

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that that job is made is made accessible to you. While on the other hand, the other job is running away from you. That job is getting the distance between you and that other job is growing, then you realize this is a sign from Allah subhanho wa Taala. So what we wait for are things happening in reality, clear, unambiguous things happening in reality. And that's how we know that Allah subhana wa Taala is guiding us in one direction, and not the other without relying mainly on dreams or comfort in our hearts.

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And the last thing, brothers and sisters that I want to say

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is that sometimes we pray istikhara and we make a choice. And after some time has passed months, maybe years, maybe we look back and say, Well, you've encountered a lot of difficulty with that choice.

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There was a lot of tests and tribulations and pain in it. Maybe perhaps maybe that other choice was the better one for me.

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And I want to want to say about that is that if we trust a lot of panel data and believe in Him, then we will believe that whatever he gives us is best for us. And how do we know if we had chosen the other path. That other path would not have brought us greater discomfort and greater unhappiness than the one that we are going through. Now. There is nothing in this life that is test free, that is pain free, whatever path we're going to take, we are going to be tested in this life. So even if you choose something after a lot of the stick around, you encounter some difficulty in it, it does not mean that the other choice isn't necessarily bad.

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Doesn't mean that this choice is necessarily bad. It simply may mean that this life is full of tests. This life has difficulty in it.

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And you can if you wish you can repeat so lots of lists the horror some of the odermatt said because it's a supplication it's a do. You can repeat that. You can pray it once you can pray twice, you can pray three times all of them asking Allah subhanho wa Taala until something happened that convinces you that Allah subhana wa Taala is taking you in one direction or the other. So brothers and sisters, remember that this is a great center from the messenger sallallahu alayhi wa sallam he would teach it with a lot of dedication to his companions. So we also should practice it in all matters big and small and teach it to our families teach it to our children, teach it to our

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neighbors, so that we can revive that sin and with that we can attach ourselves to Allah subhana wa tada and become so close to him, and we rely on him more than anything else.

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More than we even rely on ourselves. We ask Allah subhanho wa Taala to teach us our religion We ask Allah subhana wa tada to forgive all of our sins. We ask Allah Subhana Allah to grant his sincere to what good on him. Whereas Allah subhanho wa Taala equipped to protect us from all shirk, and protect us and all Muslims from all harm along in and so local hierarchy low and becoming a shared equally when a local ginetta Makarova Hammond Colin Rommel, when I was becoming a narrow Makarova in a cold environment, Vanessa Luqman Heidi masala kapruka Mohammedan sallallahu alayhi wa sallam

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when I was with weekend should we must start the Camino Abu Mohammed Allahu alayhi wa sallam aloha my yarmulke libelle Hello Miss a bit Hello Ben Allah de la Miami. Hulu Hulu Ganapati yahaya umuahia hermetic and studied us Liliana Shannon Aquila, kin Illa and fusina perfetta. I welcome sada