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Being grateful during times of difficulty
Channel: Ismail Kamdar
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Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh hamdulillahi Rabbil alameen wa Salatu was Salam O Allah Nabeel Karim, Allah Allah He was heavy as marine. We begin by praising Allah subhanho wa Taala and asking Allah to send his peace and blessings upon the final prophet, Muhammad, even Abdullah sola Allahu alayhi wa sallam, all those who follow his way with righteousness until the end of times. Welcome to another virtual footpath, where today inshallah we will be discussing the topic of sugar or gratitude, during times of difficulty. So, this may seem like a strange topic to some people. Why talk about gratitude during difficult times, I mean, going through a really hard time right now, as
an online as a whole, the world as a whole and meal generally, during times like this, our lectures focus on Saba on patience. And I have discussed that many times over the past few months. So I want you to give us a different perspective this week, instead,
something a bit more optimistic, but more hopeful to help us through this difficult time. So
it is a difficult time. Definitely. And I mean, this past week alone, we lost a lot of people we know in our community, very influential members of this community have passed away, putting some my own teachers and other people that are new. And we ask Allah to accept their debts as martyrdom, and to grant and gentlemen, forgive him for their sins, they ask Allah to protect us from this pandemic, and to lift it soon. And to return the world to normal
soon, and will continue to make these two are actually remain optimistic until the very end. So optimism, or having good thoughts about ally is a very important part of our religion. And one of the ways to achieve this is through gratitude to be grateful to Allah Subhana. Without that, the more we have, you know, likes to be grateful for or the more that we recognize in our lives, to be grateful for the more optimistic and hopeful and happy and excited we are with our lives. And so it's important that no matter what situation we are in, we look for things to thank Allah for, and to be grateful to Allah for now.
Many of us have this idea that the way that the test of the world is, is that when we are going to good times, our test is to have sugar to have gratitude. And when we are going through difficult times, in our test is sober to to be patient with those calamities. But there is actually a higher level of demand, the higher level of demand is to express our subber and sugar in both situations, that during good times, we are grateful, but we also have suffer. And during that time, we are patient, but we also have sugar. Now this may be a bit difficult to understand if you haven't heard of this concept before. So we'll break it down with some examples. Let's start off with the good
times. Right, so
just say that someone becomes a billionaire, and they experience experiencing for the first time in their life, great wealth and financial freedom. And now they are going through a good time in their life. So generally, we would assume that in that situation, the test of life is sober. So it's sugar, right? To be grateful to Allah for that world, to use it in a way that is pleasing to Allah Subhana Allah to express my gratitude to allergic to the girl to sing or hum de la sala to charity, to all of these different things that we assumed as in our time only for sugar. But it's actually a time for sober as well. Because again, many of us are unaware of the fact that the word server has a
variety of meanings, a variety of layers. That server does not refer to patients with calamities only. That's one type of server. There are other dimensions to server as well. Because from the meanings of the word server itself, control from the meanings of the word server is perseverance. And so these elements of solver come into play when one is going to good times. So for example, if one becomes a billionaire, it's now easy to come and say no, it's not easy to gamble, without worrying about losing all of one's money. It's now easy to get access to expensive drugs and alcohol. And it's easy to get away with the central aisle getting in trouble. So the dog sin becomes
easy, and enough to make crazy decisions. So sober at the time of wealth and affluence is to stay away from these things even though your dogs really wants you to suburbia is self control. Likewise, when one suddenly becomes wealthy and you go into a good time in life, then at such a time it
becomes easy to get lazy about once a bar that start to select a budget, a person stops during budget time. And then they stop playing the Sala altogether. And so they stop persevering in the good deeds. And so the other type of suburb that is needed at times of ease is to persevere in one's good deeds to remain persistent on budget, even though you have got an extra comfy bed and you've got everything you want in this dunya. And you're not in Shavasana whispering to you and telling you that you don't need Salah. And all of these things are there to remain committed to your a bar that is not a type of server. So that means that good times, we need both soccer and soccer, we have to
thank Allah for the goodness in our lives, will ensure garden as he promises us that if you agreed to Allah will give you even more. But at the same time, we have to be persistent on our good deeds. And we have to be in self control away from science. And this can be very, very difficult at the time of ease. And this is why some of the scholars in the field of purification of the soul, they actually say that the sub at the time of ease is harder than the sovereign at the time of difficulty. Why? Because it's having difficulty, you really have no choice except to have supper, everybody has suffered a times of difficulty, almost everybody I mean, even the atheist have
suffered at a time of difficulty because there is no other way to get through it. Right except to patients. So that's actually the easiest type of patience, but to remain committed to once divided during times of ease, to
stay away from sindri time to ease, this is a lot more difficult, and only really the pious were able to do this. And so this is the greater type of sober. And this is something that helps us to attain a higher stage of piety during times of ease. But you may be saying, but we're not going through times of peace. We go into a pandemic, we go into a time of difficulty. So what's this got to do with our situation? And what it has to do with our situation is the opposite. Right? I spoke about suburbs during times of ease. What about the opposite? What about sugar during times of difficult new eating? Why sugar I mean, we go into a really tough time right now people are losing
their jobs. People are sick, people are dying every day, they are dozens of joses it's, it's crazy. What's there to have sugar.
I say there's always something to add sugar is always something to express gratitude for is always something to tangle up for. And this is the higher level of EMR. This is the piety that we should aim for, to be able to see the good in every situation. Again, I remind you that our religion is a religion of optimism. It's a religion, of always trying to see the good in everything in every situation. It's a religion, no matter how bad things get. There's always something good either happening right now or on the horizon. And our focus is on that. So if you look at the sutras, the early students revealed during a time of difficulty for a pseudo love so the love while he was set
up to hide in shadow, it actually these two suitors, they come one after the other in the Quran, and they flow together almost like one sutra with a common theme and a common rhythm style to such an extent. There's some early Muslims actually consider them to be a single surah and even revealed together as well. Now when you look at these two suitors, the common theme in both of these students despite being revealed at a time of difficulty, the common theme is not sober. But it's optimism is to look at the good either right now on the horizon. So Surah duha is about optimism about the future, right? That soon Allah will give you that which is better for you, right after the hemlock,
cooler than what is to come is better than what what what has passed, that it's all about the future. It's all about good things are going to happen. And then at the end of the sutra, it's about gratitude for what you already have. The sutras revealed while the prophets Elijah was going through a difficult time Allah call them to make sure they are not held you. Remember that you were poor, and we gave you Well, remember that you were offered and give your family remember to do a searching and we can be and we guided you to Prophethood it all early. Mindfulness favors a reminder to be grateful during difficult times, sugar during difficult times. That's what Allah called the Prophet
sallallahu alayhi wa sallam towards an angel Shira, Allah tells us in
Israel, and this is a slogan of ours, but we often translated as after difficulties is, the actual wording is wood difficulties, meaning whatever tests Allah sends us is something else in our life that it is at the same time. So for example, someone may lose their job, but at the same time, they may form closer bonds with their family.
Members, right, or somebody may be experiencing the death of a loved one. But at the same time, they may be gaining a large inheritance, or whatever it is you go into hardship that you have to have suffered with. But at the same time, there's something you're not looking at, that you need to have be grateful for, as well. And we see this in the attitude of the righteous throughout history, that no matter how bad things got, they always focus on the good and they always look for something to be grateful for. And we see this in the life of Omar, who one who, that there is a narration attributed to him, that whenever something bad used to happen, something that we would assume that we have to
have someone would, he would look for a reason to tangle up to be grateful to Allah subhana wa Taala and he will look at things like 100 he just hasn't affected my mind 100 enough. All I lost was dunya I didn't lose anything to do with my Deen? No, he would look for the good he will he would he would be highly optimistic and he would fully himself with gratitude towards Allah subhanho wa Taala. Even during difficult times, the Sahaba they had such an attitude of gratitude, that they will even be grateful to Allah for debt itself, even for debt itself, that for many of us, this debt, it's a scary thing. It's something we terrified of. It's something that that we don't we can't see any good
in it. Yet when you look at the early Muslims, you know, they they also had these human fears, but they countered it with the belief that there is good waking force on the other side. And so the prophets also he taught us this he said that whoever wishes to meet Allah, Allah wishes to meet them, meaning at the time of good, we should be excited to meet alone should be wanting to meet Allah we should be have this this positive attitude that going to meet Allah, this is a good thing. inshallah is going to be a good thing. And we see this for example, when when the great Sahabi, the mother of the believers, the beloved wife of the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam the great
scholar of Islam, I shall be the Avi Baccarat deal on how he was passing away, is an absolutely beautiful story narrated in almost all of the books all of the additional readers are in beta when you hire, it's in at the hub is Nevada. It's all of these great books, a beautiful story that when I say passing away, Abdullah Ibn Abbas seeks permission to visit.
Immediately we learned the lesson that when someone is passing away, we should visit in obviously, in a pandemic, we can't do that. But we should maybe give them a call or call their family, whatever is within our abilities we do. So even abasi visits and what does it tell us this this is this is the point that that's related. I mean, there's many beautiful things he tells her. And I mentioned this in a previous goodbye about dealing with debt. But there's one point related to this specific topic. What does he tell him, he tells a good news. Soon you will be with the Prophet sallahu salaam and those whom you love. Again, looking for the good in every situation, someone is dying. And
Abdullah, even a boss is looking for the good in the situation, that yes, you're you leaving this body. The good news is that soon you will be with those whom you love, including the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wasallam but once your soul leaves this body is no longer constrained by the three dimensions of this world. It is now in Allenwood barossa, where you can meet the other soldiers of the righteous and be with the other soldiers, the righteous and be with the soul of your loved ones. This is a good thing. And so we look for the good in every situation. And we see this in the least about plagues itself, that the prophet SAW a lot while he was upset that plagues and pandemics,
Allah's punishment to this world, but they are a mercy to the believer. Again, look at the way he phrased it that yes, these are punishments. Yes, this is something to make us reflect something to make us make Toba country to make us turn our life around something that that's going to take the people who live evil lives towards jahannam. But it's also good in it. It's also a mercy to the believers, how's it a mercy to the believers, it's going to take people to gender as well. Someone could have spent their entire lives committing major sins, and then they die in a pandemic, and then die a debt of a martyr, Allah forgives all of these sins and they go to gender. That is the best
thing that could have ever happened to that individual to see the good times like this, this is something that that's really you know, that that that's unique to our religion, that we that we have this optimistic view of everything. I mean, even the end times we have an optimistic view of the of the times that the prophets always have said that if you have a seed in your hands and you're going to plant it, and the world is ending, school ahead and planted, just just be optimistic in every situation. And so we see this throughout history that the Muslims looked for the good in everything. And we have this famous statement from even Tamia Rahim Allah that that's become like a proverb that
people quoting in whenever they face difficulties,
You look at the statement of human Tamia, he's going to difficulty and he's not looking at it from a sovereign perspective. He's looking at it from a sugar perspective, he's looking at the things to be grateful to allow for, in the times of difficulty. What's the theme of statement of his? Well, he says, my agenda is in my heart, what can they do with me, imprison me, that's alone time with a lot of time for meditations, a time physicals time for that, right. If they kill me, it's martyrdom. Right? Whatever they do, it is something that's going to benefit me That is something to be grateful to Allah for, in whatever happens to me. And so we seen this, this attitude of gratitude in every
situation. And it's not only even taymiyah will have this, it's all of the righteous throughout our history, that they look for the good in whatever happened today, that they would see it as a blessing from Allah, things that we see as calamities, things that we see as trials, things that we see as punishment, he looked for a way to seat as a blessing as a way to tank over to find something to thank Allah for. Now, what happens when we do this? What happens when we live a life of gratitude even during difficult times, they are three benefits that we immediately get out of being grateful to Allah subhana wa tada during difficult times. Number one, is an increase in our Eman itself,
right that if you are able to find things to be grateful for during difficult times, automatically, that is an impact. Automatically that brings you closer to Allah subhanho wa Taala automatically that increases your duck walk. So this is a major plus that you know, for many people, difficult situations like what we're going through right now it rocks a Mr. It shakes the EMR. And so when you find things to take a lot for 111 labor how many labs to look at hundreds of students have passed away upon a man insha Allah to have the death of a matar you looking at the good in every difficulty. It strengthens yoga. It strengthens your conviction in this religion, it forms your
heart and this is itself a blessing for
the second benefit we get from sugar A times of difficulty is an increase in the good things in our lives. Again, going back to the promise of Allah Subhana Allah in the Quran, Allah subhana wa Taala promised us weather in Chicago,
that if you are grateful, I will give you more. So imagine you go into all of this hardship, and in the den a love for your good health. Hello will give your mobile down, you go into all of this hardship and your deck I love your email below will give you more. You didn't allow for your home, Allah will bless your home, your deck allow for your family, Allah will bless your family member more doesn't necessarily mean more in numbers, it means sometimes increasing Baraka increase in effect, increasing the goodness, right? There's different ways in which this increase comes about. So doesn't mean that if you if you don't allow for your house, allegedly to give you a second house,
but it could mean that alone would barricade that home and make it a source of subpoena and happiness and contentment for you and your family. Right. So, the second benefit that we get out of gratitude is an increase in the good things and at times of difficulty, we want an increase in good things we want as much increasing good things as possible. So, why the whole world is crashing down around us that we are sitting in Singapore have the villa for my Eman Alhamdulillah, for my for my help and hamdulillah for for, for for for my job and hungry love for my home and have a love for my family, whatever it is a hub, the leader and hamdulillah you are causing an increase in all of these
good things. And so over time, even though the rest of the world may go into calamity, you may be experiencing an increase in good things in your life, because you are maintaining an attitude of sugar even in the most difficult of times. And then we have the third benefit. What is the third benefit of sugar during times of difficulty, it is a psychological benefit. The psychological benefit of having an attitude of gratitude during difficult times is that it prevents depression.
And we know one of the biggest
problems that come out of this kind of situation when we go into pandemic and mass debt. are we dealing with the loss of loved ones? are we dealing with lock downs and been cut off from our societies? One of the biggest mental health problems that come about from this is depression, that people get depressed there is just so much negativity in the world that people fall into depression. Now, if you are taking time every day, to thank Allah for the good things in your life. You are maintaining a positive mindset. This positive mindset will inshallah help to prevent depression. It's not the only thing. Of course some people have, you know, they are more disposed towards
depression and others and they may need more assistance.
They may need counseling, they may need other things. But, you know, it does play a role in being a preventative measure that when you are focused on the good in your life, it prevents those negative thoughts overwhelming. And we see throughout our history that whenever things like this took place, one of the main problems that societies faced was a depression. That just, it just like overtook everybody. You know, when you read the E book of plagues by even Haji Escalante, he describes that you know, when the plagues got really bad, people just gave up on life. Like you just gave up. This working, they stopped doing good deeds, they just gave up. And it didn't happen to everybody. It
happened to those who did not maintain the relationship with Allah subhanho wa Taala became overwhelmed with the problems of this world. They were the ones who just gave up even hunter himself lived through a plague. That's why he wrote the book on plagues, and he lost four of his daughters to the club, protect us from something that ever happening. Can you imagine losing four daughters in one day? Yet, despite that he never gave up. He never, you know, became unproductive. Rather, he wrote the largest Islamic book of plagues. And he went on to write full body and many other amazing books about our religion became one of the greatest scholars of our time. And so he was able to
maintain that, why what was the difference between someone like him who lived through in play, and accomplished so much, and others, who just as he said in his life that he saw people just giving up on life? What is the difference? The difference is a mindset. And one of the ways to maintain the positive mindset is every day, no matter how difficult things get, no matter how bad the situation is, no matter who passes away, or who loses what to try and find something to try and find something to take a look for. Even if it's just tanking a lot if you're still a Muslim, even if it's just drinking a lot that you lost in here. And again, even if it's tempting a lot for taking your life in
a way that you can shall be accepted as martyrdom. But finding something to take a lot for. This is the mindset of a believer, we set the minimum level what's required of us in difficulties is Saba. Allah has given good news to those who have suffered, overshadow the good news to those who have suffered, and your soldiers to seek his assistance to suffer. And the prophets also said that Saba must be at the moment that the calamity begins. But how do you elevate that how do you reach the next level, remember, we are not concerned with minimum we are concerned with son with becoming the absolute best we can be, we can attain the highest possible level of Paradise and have the best
possible we want to be from the new from those who Allah describes as the macabre boon those who are close to him, right? How do we get there, we get there by not just having sober but having sugar as well. Whether it's a good time or a bad time, we maintain both stage in our heart that we are always in a state of silver and sugar simultaneously. So while we are having supper with all of the calamities in our lives, we are looking for good things to have sugar with as well. We are looking for things to thank Allah for as well. And this helps us to maintain a positive mindset. It helps us to be optimistic, it helps us to to to hold that depression, it helps us to look at things look
forward to to look for, and it helps us inshallah to get to agenda as well. And so this is the mindset that I want to want us to move forward with that yes, we are going through a very difficult time. Every day. We are receiving dozens of janazah notifications, people may know have passed away people we know are in hospital.
Many of us who are watching this have we have been through the violence have recovered from it. And many of us watching this have lost loved ones. People have lost their jobs people have lost their businesses people are in intensive care unit
days. So much going on in the world right now. That makes life very difficult. Life is a test a one or two ways to truly excel at a test and to get an A in that exam. And to attain a close read but also to handle data is to maintain a positive mindset and to maintain sugar no matter what is going on in our lives. And so we ask Allah to grant us hearts that are full of sober hearts. They're full of sugar hearts, they're full of love, pasta full of hope hearts. They're full of fear, hearts, full of love and the mind and hearts attached to Allah subhanho wa Taala had to protect us from ever being tested, you know,
that we are tested with dunya that is something that is going to disappear anyway. Our wealth is temporarily our health is temporary. Our lives are temporary. What matters most is our demand. We ask Allah
Get ready. He grants us a long life or a short life, that he can access it upon him in a way that is pleasing to Him and that he can access the eternity agenda to those shahana Robbie is at the mercy foon was Salam ala
rasulillah salam aleikum wa rahmatullah.