How Can I End The Cycle of Sin and Repentance?

Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad

Question

I haven’t gone more than a month without recoursing to this sexual sin since I was 14. I am now 26 & the sin has increased in severity. I have always, always responded to my relapses with tawba, and sometimes I go through sin and repentance two or three times in a single day, I have read about the vastness of Allah’s mercy, and it is what keeps me going. I am aware that those turned away from Him do not have remorse, but I am sick to death with myself and my incapacitation in the face of sin! I feel like a meteor will strike me from the sky due to what I have done.

I know that each repentance counts, but I can’t help but feel terrible.

Answer

Thank you for your question. May Allah continue to guide you on this path to repentance and help you overcome this, which you will, by the grace of Allah. Your guilt is a sign that your faith is strong and your intention is sincere.

Repeatedly Sinning

Although you feel that your sinning and repentance are an endless cycle, do not stop repenting. One of these will continue, and one will cease, in sha Allah, and you make sure that it’s the right one. First, please read these answers about falling back into sin:
How Do I Break The Habit of Repeatedly Falling Into The Same Sin?
Can I Turn to Allah Even if I Can’t Stop Sinning?

Steps

Please try these steps in order to help break free of this cycle:
– Use this website for Muslims as a safe place for sexual addiction: Purify Your Gaze
– Reduce your usage of screens, and stop watching lewd TV shows and videos, if you are watching them
– Fast more often, exercise, don’t eat junk food; take steps to purify your body, too.
– When the desire arises, make wudu, or make dhikr, or read some Quran. Read it a daily litany of the Quran with the meaning, even if only a little.
– Pray on time
– Spend more time with beneficial people who influence you to be how you want to be
– Spend some time in charity or volunteering, or helping others, so you can contemplate their plight instead of your own desires.
– Pray the Prayer of Need before dawn, and continue to turn to Allah in your incapacity, impoverishment, and need. He will certainly answer you.

Hope

Please contemplate this prophetic hadith Qudsi: “Allah the Almighty said, ‘I am as My servant thinks I am. I am with him when he makes mention of Me. If he makes mention of Me to himself, I make mention of him to Myself; and if he makes mention of Me in an assembly, I make mention of him in an assembly better than it. And if he draws near to Me an arm’s length, I draw near to him a cubit, and if he draws near to Me a cubit, I draw near to him a fathom. And if he comes to Me walking, I go to him with speed.’” [Bukhari; Muslim; Tirmidhi; Ibn Majah]

May Allah give you the best of this world and the next.
[Ustadha] Shazia Ahmad
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadha Shazia Ahmad lived in Damascus, Syria for two years where she studied aqidah, 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.