Spiritual Awakening (At Tanbeeh)

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All things in creation have a beginning, and our beginning is an awakening… the realization that within oneself all is not well. This awakening may come early in life, or it may come quite late. And even, perhaps, there might be several beginnings after periods of stagnation. Yet, each beginning holds the highest potential, and this is a great mercy from Allah.
The lifetime is a short journey through one aspect of creation. Its length is not our concern, for Allah {subhanahu wa ta’ala) has determined it according to His own knowledge and will, making it entirely adequate for every soul to establish whatever will be a witness for it on the Day of Judgement.
A further mercy to mankind is that every new beginning nullifies all that preceded it, be it disbelief (kufr), sin, or mere failure to make the best use of one’s time and resources. Prophet Muhammad affirmed,

  “Surely does Allah hold the heavens and the earth, lest they cease. And if they should cease, none can hold them after Him. “[6]

We have not created the heavens and the earth and that between them except in truth, and certainly the Hour is approaching. “[7]

“And if Allah were to impose blame upon the people for what they have earned, He would not leave upon it [i.e., the earth] any creature. But He defers them until an appointed term.” [8]

“O you who have believed, fear Allah. And let every soul look to what it has put forth for tomorrow and fear Allah.”[9]

 “ “Islam destroys what was before it, and repentance destroys what was before it.”[10]

What greater generosity could there be than that of Allah {subhanahu wa ta’ala), who, after mentioning the eternal humiliation and punishment of those who commit the gravest sins, adds:

  “…except for those who repent, believe and do good deeds. For them does Allah convert their evil deeds into good. And Allah is eternally forgiving and merciful.” [11]

Know then, that however long or short a life span might be, its quality, by the grace of Allah, is determined from that point when one asserts his human faculties of thought and reason and awakens to the purpose of his creation, undertaking to fulfill his responsibilities on earth in obedience to his Creator. The length of this period is again determined by Allah in adequate measure, according to His perfect knowledge of every soul. From this beginning, true life emerges-life of a higher quality which only the believer can achieve…

  “And is one who was dead [and] then We gave him life and made for him light by which to walk among the people like one who remains in darkness, never to emerge therefrom?”[12]

The initial awakening in which one chooses Islam over other ways of life is a transition from unawareness to comprehension, from denial to acceptance, from doubt to belief, or from shirk [13] to tawheed.[14] But for the Muslim believer, there is also an awakening – one that leads him from sin to repentance, from various forms of hypocrisy to sincerity, from neglect to responsibility, or from self-satisfaction to higher aspiration. Often it comes gradually as an uneasy feeling – a discomfort of the soul. Then this uneasiness develops into apprehension and finally into the awareness that one is certainly not prepared for death. Facing an undeniable truth, the servant realizes that no excuse will suffice on the Day of Judgement. Through neglect and worldly distractions, he has placed his soul in danger. Frightened by the thought of punishment, he is at once moved to long and strive for that special mercy reserved for those who have earned the acceptance of their Creator in the greater life to come. But in his present state, would he be accepted? Those diseases of the heart so carefully concealed from his fellow men will certainly be uncovered on that Day… unless they are truly cured. A wise and prudent servant will therefore hasten to grasp the opportunity in his remaining days or hours – an extension granted to him out of mercy from Allah. For when these have expired, there will be no further respite or chance for amendment…

  “Has the time not come for those who have believed that their hearts should become humbly submissive at the remembrance of Allah and what has been revealed of the truth? And [let them] not be like those who were given the Scripture before— then a long period passed over them, and their hearts hardened. And many of them are transgressors. “[16]


From “Realities of Faith” Published by Abul Qasim publications.

6 ‘Surah Fatir, 35:41.

7 Surah al-Hijr, 15:85.

8 Surah Fatir, 35:45.

9 Surah al-Hashr, 59:18.

10 Muslim and Ahmad.

11 Surah al-Furqan, 25:70.

12 Surah al-An ‘am, 6:122.

13 The worship of or obedience to others besides Allah.

14 Again, there can be no Islam without tawheed.

15 sinful attitudes and intentions known only to Allah were referred to by early scholars as “diseases” and are indeed more dangerous than physical illnesses.

16 Surah al-Hadeed, 57:16. If the ayah seems to address today’s Muslims, in particular, one might be surprised at the statement of the sahabi, Ibn Mas’ud: “There was from the time of our accepting Islam until Allah admonished us in this ayah only four years.” Such was the concern of Allah {subhanahu wa ta ‘a/a) for the Muslim community that He warned even the pious sahabali against deviation and neglect.

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