Thursday, 16 June 2011

Hardships Benefit the Believer

Hardships Benefit the Believer

Allah has decreed that, in this life, hardships and disasters strike
both believers and non-believers. For a non-believer, they are inconveniences
that hinder him from proceeding with his normal involvement in the
worldly life. For a believer, on the other hand, they are instances
of rest and remembrance, tests that promise great rewards, and indications
of atonement and expiation of sins. Regardless of how little is
the harm that strikes a believer, it carries with it good news of
forgiveness and elevated rank ( in Jannah ). The Righteous Predecessors
used to be pleased when a hardship afflicted them, seeing it as
a token of Allah's forgiveness and benevolence.

Expiations of Sins

Abu Hurayrah (RA) reported that the Prophet said: " Hardships
continue to befall a believing man and woman in their body, family,
and property, until they meet Allah (S) burdened with no sins. "

Sign of Allah's Love

Abu Hurayrah (RA) reported that the Prophet (SAW) said: "
Whenever Allah wills good for a person, He subjects him to adversity"
[Bukharee and others]

Sign of Eeman

Abu Hurayrah (RA) and Ka'b Bin Maalik (RA) reported that the Prophet
(SAW) said: " The parable of a believer is that of a fresh
and moist plant; the wind tilts it this way and that way; and so
is the believer; he continues to be subject to affliction. And the
parable of a hypocrite is that of a firm cedar tree; it does not
shake - until it is uprooted all at once." [Bukharee and Muslim]

Sign of Righteousness

The prophets and righteous people are afflicted the most, and
their rewards are the highest. Sa'd (RA) reported that the Prophet
(SAW) said: " The most in their suffering among the people
are the prophets, then the best, then the (next) best. One is afflicted
in accordance with his deen (faith). If his deen is firm his affliction
is hard, and if his deen is weak, his affliction is light. Indeed,
one would be so much subjected to adversity until he walks among
the people without any sins. " [Ahmad, Tirmithee]

Early Punishment

Anas (RA) reported that the Prophet (SAW) said: " When Allah
wills good for a servant of His, He expedites his punishment in
this life; and when He wills retribution for a servant of His, He
holds his sins for Him to judge him by them on the Day of Resurrection."

Multiplication of Rewards

Anas (RA) reported that the Prophet (SAW) said: " The amount
of reward is in accordance with the amount of suffering. When Allah
(SWT) loves some people, He tries them (with affliction). He who
then is content (with Allah's decree) has achieved the acceptance
(of Allah), and he who is dissatisfied (with Allah's decree) will
attain the anger (of Allah)." [Tirmithee]

Rewards for Sickness

One should not look to sickness as a gloomy episode, but should
remember the great good in it. It is one form of affliction with
which Allah (SWT) tests His 'ibaad (servants), giving them a

chance to acquire rewards, as was explained above, as is further
emphasized below.

Removal of Sins and Elevation in Ranks

Abu Hurayrah (RA) reported that the Prophet (SAW) said: "
Whenever a Muslim is afflicted by harm from sickness or other matters,
Allah will drop his sins because of that, like a tree drops its
leaves." [Bukharee and Muslim]

Abu Sa'eed al-Khudree (RA) reported that the Prophet (SAW) said:
"A Muslim is not afflicted by hardship, sickness, sadness,
worry, harm, or depression - even if pricked by a thorn, but Allah
expiates his sins because of that. " [Bukharee and Muslim]

Sa'eed said, " I was with Salmaan (RA) when he visited a
sick man in Kindah ( in Persia ), and he said to him: " Expect
good because Allah (SWT) makes a believers sickness an expiation
(for his sins) and a period of rest. However, when a disbeliever
falls sick, he is like a camel whose owner ties it then lets it
loose - it does not understand why it was tied nor why it was freed."

'Aishah (RA) narrated that once some pain afflicted the Prophet
(SAW) causing him to suffer and turn about in his bed. she said:
"Had one of us done this, you would have blamed him."
He (SAW) replied: " An ailment is intensified for the righteous.
whenever a believer is afflicted by a hardship, whether it is a
thorn or more, a sin is taken off from him because of it, and he
is elevated by one rank (in Jannah). " [Ahmad]

Retaining Rewards for Deeds Before Sickness

Usually, when a believer falls sick, he would not be able to do
the same amount of good (prayer, fasting, helping Muslims etc) that
he used to do when he was well. But Allah out of His great mercy,
continues to record for him the good deeds that he was forced to
stop because of his sickness. Abu Moosa Al-Ash'aree narrated that
the Prophet (SAW) said: " For a traveling or sick person, his
deeds will be recorded in accordance with what he used to do when
he was resident or well." [Bukharee]

'Abdullah Bin 'Amr reported that the Prophet said: "No (believing)
person gets sick, but (his deeds) will be recorded for him in accordance
with what he used to do when he was well." [Bukharee] Anas
(RA) reported that the Prophet (SAW) said: " No Muslims body
is afflicted by Allah, but He will record (his deeds) foe him in
accordance with what he used to do when he was well - as long as
he is sick. Thus, if He takes his life, He forgives him; and if
He cures him, He washes him (from sins)." [Bukharee]

'Uqbah Bin 'Aamir reported that the Prophet (SAW) said: "Each
days deeds are sealed with it. thus, when a believer gets sick,
the angels say, " Our lord! Your servant such and such, You
have restrained him (from doing good this day)." And the lord
replies, " Seal his day in accordance with his (usual) deeds,
until he is cured or dies". [Ahmad]

Reason for the Reward

'Atta Bin Rabaah reported that Ibn 'Abbaas (RA) told him, "Do
you want to see a woman from the people of Jannah (paradise)?"
He said "Yes". He said: " It is this black woman.
She came to the Prophet (SAW) saying, " I have (epileptic)
seizures, and I get exposed, so supplicate to Allah for me."
He (SAW) said: " If you wish, be patient and you will attain
Jannah; or if you wish, I will ask Allah to cure you." She
replied, " I will be patient ! But my body gets exposed (because
of the fall), so supplicate to Allah for me that I do not become
exposed." and he (SAW) did." [Bukharee and Muslim]

The scholars have differed in opinion as to whether a sick person
will be rewarded for the sickness itself or for being patient during
it. the correct opinion is that if he is patient and submits to
Allah's will, as in the above hadeeth, he would be rewarded for
both the submission and the sickness, otherwise, he would not be
rewarded at all; because he resented Allah's decree. This is what
should be understood from Ibn hajar al-'Asqalaanees words: "The
authentic hadeeths are clear in that the rewards are recorded once
affliction strikes a Muslim. As for patience and acceptance, they
are virtues for which a person may get additional rewards over those
for the affliction." 'Abdullah Bin 'Amr reported that the Prophet
(SAW) said: "If a Muslim is pricked by (as little as) a thorn
in the worldly life, and he seeks its reward from Allah, some of
his sins will be removed, because of it, on the Day of Judgement."[Bukharee]

"True believers are only those whose hearts are filled with
awe whenever God is mentioned, and whose faith is strengthened whenever
His revelations are recited to them. In their Lord do they place
their trust." (Chapter 8: Verse 2)

Md Ziya

Nagpur- India


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