How Can I Supplicate When My Sins Block My Supplications?

Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad

Question

I started practicing Islam from this year, I stopped many sins but I still do some that I find hard to let go of, like listening to music, sometimes I know I’m sinning but I do it anyway and then I feel so guilty. I heard sins block dua, so now any time I sin I feel like all the dua I make has gone to waste, I feel hopeless, is there any point of making dua for things if one can’t stop sinning?

How can I be sinless? I heard that Allah Most High even answers the dua of kuffar, so why wouldn’t He answer?

Answer

Thank you for your question. May Allah reward you for your sincerity and good intentions. Your sins don’t block your supplication.

Sin and Repentance

Allah knows that we are sinners and has created us as such so that we can know Him and need Him. The only ones who were sinless were the prophets, and that rank is impossible for us to reach. Allah has told us to focus on our repentance, as the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace), told us, “All humans sin, and the best of sinners are those who are most repentant.” [Ibn Maja]

In addition to this, Allah rejoices at the since repentance of His servant, “Allah rejoices more over the repentance of His slave, than a man who loses his mount in a barren land, and he searches for it until he gets tired and covers his face with his garment, and while he is like that, he heard the footsteps of his mount where he lost it, so he lifts the garment from his face and there is his mount.” [Ibn Maja]

Please see this link about how to repent and slowly eliminate sins from one’s life:
What Are the Conditions of Making Tawba? (Transcript) – Ustadh Abdullah Misra
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?
I Feel Very Disheartened Because I Keep Sinning. What Do I Do?

Gratitude

Instead of focusing on the sins that you have not been able to cease, focus on the good that Allah has given you, and the fact that he has made you practice now. Gratitude is just as important as repentance. Allah has told us, “And ˹remember˺ when your Lord proclaimed, ‘If you are grateful, I will certainly give you more. But if you are ungrateful, surely My punishment is severe.’” [Qur’an, 14:7] [Quran, 14:7]

Supplication

Finally, your supplication is not blocked by your sins, rather a person’s sins can render one more repentant, broken-hearted, impoverished, and more sincere in their repentance. Please see these etiquettes of supplication and commit to applying them. Also, see the hadith below about Allah’s eagerness to respond to a slave’s supplication:
The Reality and Etiquettes of Supplication: A Reader

The Prophet (may Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “When half of the night or two-thirds of it is over, Allah (the Blessed and the Exalted) descends to the lowest heaven and says: ‘Is there any beggar so that he be given? Is there any supplicator so that he be answered? Is there any beggar of forgiveness so that he be forgiven? (And Allah continues saying it) till it is daybreak.'” [Muslim]

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.