In Quran u Sunnah, there is much admiration for those who put their trust in Allah (SWT). In-fact it is one of the basics of belief in Allah (SWT). So it is compulsory for us to rely upon Allah (SWT) in all matters of our life.
Claiming trust in Allah (SWT), some people ignore planning and precautionary measures in social and economic affairs of their and their children lives. When they are reminded to be attentive in this regard; they reply that we totally rely upon Allah (SWT).
Do you agree with this reply? Support your point of view with evidences from the lives of Holy Prophet (Peace and Blessing be Upon Him) and His companions. Your answer shall cover the true concept of “Tawakkul” (Trust in Allah (SWT)).
“Human being gets what he strives for. Man sees the result of his efforts” (An Najm 39-40)
Allah guides the one who strives hard. waladhina jaahadu feena lanahdiyanahu subulanaa
Allah does not guide the wrong doers. wallahu laa yahdil qawma dhaalimun/faasiquun
Allah beautifies imaan in the hearts of those who he wishes to guide. walaakinal laaha hababa ilaykumul imaan
May Allah open our hearts to islaam, it is he who opens the heart of whoever he wishes to islaam. Faman yuridilaahu an yahdiyahu yashrah lahu sadrahu lil islaam
I have always heard these quotes in context of worldly success in one’s career, business, field, sports…etc. but rarely in terms of success in following one’s religious obligations by making efforts in becoming more obedient towards orders of Allah (Swt) through prayers, Zikr, Quran recitation, Sadaqa, encouraging good discouraging bad, serving others….etc. and raising the bar for oneself with each passing day.
That is why when a man asked a scholar about a helpful ‘wazeefa’ and to pray for his becoming pious and obedient towards Allah (swt). That scholar replied, “No one’s dua can be effective unless one himself does HIMMAT (courageous effort) with patience and dedication to become a good Mo’min” (Just like he does in order to succeed in any other field of life). In worldly matters, we never become too lazy in our obedience towards an examiner, boss, instructor…etc. with a continuous hope of their forgiveness of our intentional carelessness time and again, then why in case of the AL MIGHTIEST of All! Who would still forgive us, but surely doesn’t deserve a poluted obedience from our side, which unfortunately people like me have.
May Allah (swt) bless us all with a courage to become immensely dedicated towards Allah (swt) and HIS prophet’s ways MORE than to anyone/anything else.
The Concept of Tawakkul in Islam
This khutbah was given at the new South Denver Islamic Center on Nov. 6th. The references used to compile the material are listed at the end .
إن الحمد لله نحمده ونستعينه ونستغفره ونعوذ بالله من شرور أنفسنا ومن سيئات أعمالنا من يهده الله فلا مضل له ومن يضلل فلا هادي له..وأشهد ان لا إله إلا الله وحده لا شريك له وأشهد أن محمداً عبده ورسوله
All thanks is to Allah, whom we seek His help and forgiveness. We seek refuge in Allah from whatever evil our hearts conceal and from the consequences of our evil deeds. Whoever Allah grants guidance will never be led astray. Whoever He leads astray will never find guidance. I attest that none is worthy of worship except Allah, who has no partners, and that Mohammad is His slave and Messenger.
The topic of today’s khutba is about Tawakkul or reliance on Allah subhanahou wata3ala.
So we’ll look at the meaning of tawakkul, its pillars, its benefits, and how we apply it in our daily lives.
I’d like to start with a story of a brother called Hakeem Olajuwon, an MVP on the Houston Rockets basketball team. They used to say he was a very good player but had a very bad temper. He’d regularly fight with other players, swear etc.
“Before I started practicing my faith, I used to completely rely on myself. When I had done my best, I would be extremely frustrated if I didn’t win. It would irritate and anger me. And that was causing me to be bad to others by fighting and swearing,” he explained.
“But when I started practicing my faith, I learned that results are not my property. I started doing my best but then I left success and failure to my Creator. Now I was not irritated by failure and was not overinflated by success. That caused me to calm down and improve my behavior towards others on my team and we became a team.”
By relying on your creator, you realize that you are not all-powerful, but Allah is; you are not in control of every variable, but Allah is (be it known or unknown to us). The brother has reached that level of trust and reliance on Allah, which has reflected positively not only on him, but on his team and his surroundings.
Part 1 – Meaning of Tawakkul
التوكل: مشتق من ” الوكالة “. يقال: وكَّل أمره إلى فلان، أي فوَّضه إليه، واعتمد عليه فيه. ويسمى الموكول إليه ” وكيلاً “. ويسمى المفوِّض إليه متكلاً عليه، ومتوكِّلاً عليه،
The meaning of tawakkul is expressed by the term taukeel (to make or appoint a wakeel or a counselor, agent, representative). When one lacks the understanding and ability for something then another is appointed to execute the task. Such appointment of an agent to act on one’s behalf is the meaning of taukeel.
Tawakkul is to repose your trust…to have resolute trust and reliance on Allah
Reliance on Allah was the manner of all the prophets:
( ومالنا ألا نتوكل على الله وقد هدانا سبلنا، ولنصبرن على ما آذيتمونا، وعلى الله فليتوكل المتوكلون ) (إبراهيم: 12).
And why should we not put our trust in Allah while he indeed has guided us our ways? And we shall certainly bear with patience all the hurt you may cause us, and in Allah (Alone) let those who trust, put their trust” (Ibrahim/Abraham, verse 12)
And put your trust and reliance in Allah, and sufficient is Allah as a Trustee.” (Surah Al-Ahzab 33: 3)
وتوكل على الله، وكفى بالله وكيلاً
How beautiful and comforting it is to know that you have Allah on your side!
“And trust and rely on the Living One (Allah), Who will never die, and celebrate His praises and thanks. And Sufficient is He to be acquainted with the sins of His slaves.” (Surah Al-Furqan 25:58)
وتوكل على الحي الذي لا يموت وسبح بحمده
The Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him, said: “Were you to put your complete trust and reliance on Allah, He would provide for you as He provides for the birds. They issue forth hungry in the morning and return filled in the evening”. (Tirmidhi)
وفي الترمذي عن عمر رضي الله عنه مرفوعاً: ( لو أنكم تتوكلون على الله حق توكله لرزقكم كما يرزق الطير، تغدو خماصاً، وتروح بطاناً ). ومعنى ” خماصاً ” أي فارغة البطون.
The Chapter Al-Mulk is actually a beautiful manifestation for the meaning of Tawakkul. It starts and finishes with the same message: To Allaah belong all that is in the universe and nothing would happen without His Mercy and His constant watchful care. He Almighty Says in the first verse what meand: “Blessed is He in whose hand is dominion, and He is Able to do all things.” He Almighty then Says in the last verse what means: “Say, if your water was to sink away [into the earth], then who could bring you flowing water?” [Quran 67 :30]
Part 2 – Pillars
• The first is to know Allah (swt) by his qualities and attributes, such as the fact that he is all capable and sufficient to rely on; that he is the sustainer; that he is all–knowing and that things can only happen with his will and decree. Knowing all this achieves the first pillar. The more we know about Allah (swt) the more sound and firm is our reliance on him.
• The second pillar is to believe that every matter has a cause or a means. Some people give up utilizing these means due to their ignorance and think that this is reliance on Allah (swt). They wait for Allah (swt) to send down their provisions, feed them and take care of their concerns and affairs while they do nothing. In Arabic, this is called “tawakul” (تواكل); the difference may be on letter, but it is significant enough; we should not be complacent or stagnant; we should do everything that’s available to us to reach our goals.
• The third pillar is to remain firm in relying on Allah alone. A person’s reliance on Allah cannot be fulfilled until one relies on him alone.
Support for this pillar comes in the Quran – again in surah number 3 Aal-Imran in verse 160.
إن ينصركم الله فلا غالب لكم وإن يخذلكم فمن ذا الذي ينصركم من بعده وعلى الله فليتوكل المؤمنون
If Allah helps you, none can overcome you:
If He forsakes you, who is there, after that, that can help you?
In Allah, then, Let believers put their trust.
• The fourth pillar is to depend on Allah (swt) whole-heartedly and feel tranquility when doing so, to the extent that one does not feel anxious or confused regarding the status of means with which objectives are accomplished. Some people do not feel secure until they utilize these means, and if Allah (swt) decrees that these means are not available they feel overwrought. Such people’s reliance on Allah (swt) is incomplete, because true reliance is when a person does not care if means are available or not, because they know that all matters are in the hand of Allah (swt), all he has to do for a matter to occur is say ‘Be and it becomes’. But remember, you’ll have to utilize all the means available to you first.
“Be keen to do that which would benefit you, rely on Allah and do not be lazy (by not exerting effort) and do not say, when a problem befalls you: ‘If I would have done such and such, then the result would have been such and such’ rather you should say: ‘This was decreed by Allah (swt) and Allah (swt) does what he wills. Saying ‘If” opens the gate for “Satan.” (muslim).
• The fifth pillar is to realize that the essence of reliance on Allah (swt) is to entrust all matters to him willingly, without feeling forced to do so.
Part 3 – Benefits
Adopting the belief and practice of Tawakkul has two benefits for us.
First, knowing that our responsibility for what happens is limited is very comforting. Those who do not realize the limits of human responsibility normally transgress on others’ rights by forcing their will on them through verbal or physical violence or they may get depressed and lose their mind or hurt themselves. So it is the Mercy of Allah that He has told us that our responsibility is limited. And that is the meaning of “On no soul does Allah place a burden greater than it can bear” (Quran 2: 286) as well as the understanding of individual responsibility.
The second consequence of Tawakkul is that it invites us to connect to a powerful Ally Who is no one but the Lord Himself. The more we rely on Him, the greater the chances that we will try to please Him by following the guidance He has given us, which in turn will lead to goodness in this world and success in the Hereafter.
The third consequence of Tawakkul is what Br. Hakeem learned by observing himself. By fully trusting in Allah and relying on Him, we are not depressed by what we have lost or intoxicated by our success (Quran 57:22-23). We know that all things are in Allah’s hands. And that makes us not only humbler but more submissive to God, thus better believers.
“The believers are only those who when Allah is mentioned feel a fear in their hearts and when His Verses are recited unto them, they increase their faith, and they put their trust in their Lord. Who perform prayer and spend out of what We have provided for them. It is they who are the believers in truth. For them are grades of dignity with their Lord, and Forgiveness and a generous provision.” (Surah Al-Anfal 8: 2-4)
Part 4 – Application
If there is one lesson to be taken from this khutba, it is “al Istikhara”. It’s a blessing from Allah that we can pray to Him and seek His direction.
Istikhara (Arabic) means to ask Allah to guide one to the right thing concerning any affair in one’s life, especially when one has to choose between two permissible alternatives, e.g. a career choice, getting married.
To take marriage as an example, you may meet the right person, with deen, akhlaq, values, good upbrining (or any other desired attribute); but subhanAllah, it may not work out for whatever reason that you have no knowledge of, but Allah does. On the flip-side, you may meet a person that doesn’t meet all that you desire, and you can’t find that comfort in your heart, but again, you may become the happiest person with that person. You have no knowledge of it at the time of making a decision, but Allah does.
Sa’ d ibn Waqas reported that the Prophet, peace be upon him, said, “Istikharah (seeking guidance from Allah) is one of the distinct favors (of Allah) upon man, and a good fortune for the son of Adam is to be pleased with the judgment of Allah. And a misfortune of the son of Adam is his failure to make istikharah (seeking Allah’s guidance), and a misfortune for the son of Adam is his displeasure with the judgment of Allah.” Ibn Taimiyyah said, “He who seeks guidance from the Creator and consults the creatures will never regret it.”
“The Prophet sallallahu alehi wasallam would teach us al-istikhara for all of our affairs as he would teach us a surah from the Qur’an. He said: ‘If one of you is deliberating over an act, he should pray two non-obligatory rak’at and say: “O Allah, I consult You as You are All-Knowing and I appeal to You to give me power as You are Omnipotent, I ask You for Your great favor, for You have power and I do not, and You know all of the hidden matters . O Allah ! If you know that this matter (then he should mention it) is good for me in my religion, my livelihood, and for my life in the Hereafter, (or he said: ‘for my present and future life,’) then make it (easy) for me. And if you know that this matter is not good for me in my religion, my livelihood and my life in the Hereafter, (or he said: ‘for my present and future life,’) then keep it away from me and take me away from it and choose what is good for me wherever it is and please me with it.”
عَنْ جَابِرٍ رضي الله عنه قَالَ : كَانَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم يُعَلِّمُنَا الاسْتِخَارَةَ فِي الأُمُورِ كُلِّهَا كَمَا يُعَلِّمُنَا السُّورَةَ مِنْ الْقُرْآنِ يَقُولُ : إذَا هَمَّ أَحَدُكُمْ بِالأَمْرِ فَلْيَرْكَعْ رَكْعَتَيْنِ مِنْ غَيْرِ الْفَرِيضَةِ ثُمَّ لِيَقُلْ : ( اللَّهُمَّ إنِّي أَسْتَخِيرُكَ بِعِلْمِكَ , وَأَسْتَقْدِرُكَ بِقُدْرَتِكَ , وَأَسْأَلُكَ مِنْ فَضْلِكَ الْعَظِيمِ فَإِنَّكَ تَقْدِرُ وَلا أَقْدِرُ , وَتَعْلَمُ وَلا أَعْلَمُ , وَأَنْتَ عَلامُ الْغُيُوبِ , اللَّهُمَّ إنْ كُنْتَ تَعْلَمُ أَنَّ هَذَا الأَمْرَ (هنا تسمي حاجتك ) خَيْرٌ لِي فِي دِينِي وَمَعَاشِي وَعَاقِبَةِ أَمْرِي أَوْ قَالَ : عَاجِلِ أَمْرِي وَآجِلِهِ , فَاقْدُرْهُ لِي وَيَسِّرْهُ لِي ثُمَّ بَارِكْ لِي فِيهِ , اللَّهُمَّ وَإِنْ كُنْتَ تَعْلَمُ أَنَّ هَذَا الأَمْرَ (هنا تسمي حاجتك ) شَرٌّ لِي فِي دِينِي وَمَعَاشِي وَعَاقِبَةِ أَمْرِي أَوْ قَالَ : عَاجِلِ أَمْرِي وَآجِلِهِ , فَاصْرِفْهُ عَنِّي وَاصْرِفْنِي عَنْهُ وَاقْدُرْ لِي الْخَيْرَ حَيْثُ كَانَ ثُمَّ ارْضِنِي بِهِ . وَيُسَمِّي حَاجَتَهُ ) وَفِي رواية ( ثُمَّ رَضِّنِي بِهِ( رَوَاهُ الْبُخَارِيُّ (1166)
So let’s take advantage of this great blessing; always consult with Allah and seek His direction for any important permissible matter.
Part 5 – Conclusion
The one who entrusts Allah (swt) does so in the certainty that what Allah (swt) decrees is best for them, even if it is apparently the opposite of what they believe to be good. Such a person is content with the decrees of Allah as they know whatever is decreed is best for them, whether the benefit is apparent or not.
Relying on Allah (swt) can instill an enormous amount of peace and contentment. But remember Allah helps whom he wills, so ask him for help often, do your best with patience and certainty and remember the other condition: be conscious of Allah.