How Do I Become Less Obsessed with Gaining Worldly Things?

Answered by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Question

I am very obsessed with gaining worldly things. I am having unwanted thoughts about worldly things.

How do I become less obsessed with gaining worldly things?

Answer

In the Name of Allah, the Merciful and Compassionate

I hope you’re doing well, insha’Allah. May Allah bless you for your concern for seeking Allah’s Pleasure, and for directing yourself towards the Hereafter.

Allah Most High says, “And the next life is certainly far better for you than this one.” [Quran, 93:4]

The Messenger of Allah (peace & blessings be upon him) said, “Renounce worldliness and Allah will love you.” [Ibn Maja (Sound)]

Imam Ghazali (Allah have mercy upon him)explains that, “Renunciation (zuhd) is shifting one’s keenness from one thing to another that is better than it.” [Ihya’]

The purpose of not being overly attached to the worldly is to prioritize the next life; and to make religion one’s practical priority in life–in order to draw closer to Allah Most High and eternal felicity.

How Do You Cultivate Concern for the Hereafter With Balance?

Cultivate concern for the next life through:

  1. Seeking beneficial knowledge;
  2. Establishing consistent, sustainable, gradual routines of religious works–such as prayer, recitation of Quran, remembrance and supplication by morning and night, and other consistent good deeds–with sincerity for Allah;
  3. Reflect when you pray and recite the Quran–including reflection on the Next Life, and what matters in life;
  4. Plan your spending around your life priorities–seeking to maximize both religious and worldly good, for yourself and others;
  5. Change your spending habits gradually;
  6. If you want to get worldly things that are (a) lawful, (b) wholesome, and (c) which you can direct towards the good with gratitude–then don’t feel guilty about such spending.

Don’t Overdo Things

The Messenger of Allah (peace & blessings be upon him)said, “Truly, Allah loves to see the traces of His blessings on His servants.” [Tirmidhi (Sound); Ahmad (Sound)]

Gratitude for blessings is a bridge to the Love of Allah, and His Closeness.

This is why the righteous servants pray, “O Lord, grant us true good in this life and true good in the next life…” [Quran, 2:201]

And Allah is the giver of success and facilitation.
[Shaykh] Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Faraz Rabbani spent ten years studying with some of the leading scholars of recent times, first in Damascus, and then in Amman, Jordan. His teachers include the foremost theologian of recent times in Damascus, the late Shaykh Adib al-Kallas (may Allah have mercy on him), as well as his student Shaykh Hassan al-Hindi, one of the leading Hanafi fuqaha of the present age. He returned to Canada in 2007, where he founded SeekersGuidance in order to meet the urgent need to spread Islamic knowledge–both online and on the ground–in a reliable, relevant, inspiring, and accessible manner. He is the author of: Absolute Essentials of Islam: Faith, Prayer, and the Path of Salvation According to the Hanafi School (White Thread Press, 2004.) Since 2011, Shaykh Faraz has been named one of the 500 most influential Muslims by the Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Center.