How Should a Muslim With Otherworldly Goals Engage in Worldly Matters?

Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad


I feel that Islam is making me lose my motivation in life. I understand that this life is a test, and our only goal is to one day reach Heaven, but because of that, I find it hard to find motivation for any worldly matters.

What’s the point of having a career, finding a spouse, or doing something difficult to help people? Wouldn’t it just be the same to pray and make du’a, and that’s it?


I am sorry that you have lost motivation for worldly matters. I pray that you can recover your zeal and be in this world as the Prophet was (may Allah bless him and grant him peace).

The Prophet (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) said, “The most beloved of people according to Allah is he who brings the most benefit to people, and the most beloved of deeds according to Allah the Mighty, the Magnificent, is that you bring happiness to a fellow Muslim, or relieve him of distress, or pay off his debt or stave away hunger from him. It is more beloved to me that I walk with my brother Muslim in his time of need than I stay secluded in the mosque for a month.” [Tabarani]

The Prophet (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) himself is an example and model for perfection and utmost piety. He fought in wars, worked with his Companions, built a mosque, established rule, and reconciled people; the list is endless.

His whole lifestyle was based on productivity to help the Muslims rise and establish a government for themselves so they could believe, freely practice their religion without oppression, and be a caliph on Earth for Allah.

If Allah had wanted us to sit at home and worship all day, society would be in turmoil; people would be starved and poverty-stricken, there would be no improvements or development, and corruption would increase from allowing unIslamic laws to rule the people. Rather, every person is responsible for using his limbs in a way that pleases Allah and helps Islam.

It is not possible for one to sit, but rather, reflect on the hadith above and be avid to bring the most benefit you can. Every single thing that you do for Allah is worship.

This includes driving, shopping, cooking, working, cleaning, talking, bathing, sleeping, and even intercourse. Why be content with just praying all day if you can go out, bring benefit to yourself and to people, and still get a reward for it?

Allah is merciful, so please accept His mercy and make something of yourself to help the Ummah of Muhammad alone. Don’t intend it for yourself. Spend all of your free time in worship.

But do not stand in front of Allah and tell Him that you did not try to contribute to helping your fellow Muslims through your limbs, mind, property, wealth, life, or heart.

[Ustadha] Shazia Ahmad
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadha Shazia Ahmad lived in Damascus, Syria for two years where she studied aqida, fiqh, tajweed, tafsir, and Arabic. She then attended the University of Texas at Austin, where she completed her Masters in Arabic. Afterward, she moved to Amman, Jordan where she studied fiqh, Arabic, and other sciences. She later moved back to Mississauga, Canada, where she lives with her family.