How Can I Remove Guilty Thoughts That Stop Me From Praying?

Question: How can I overcome my guilt?
Answer:
Dear questioner,
Thank you for your important question.
Know that your desire to remove these thoughts is a sign of absolute faith and Allah placing mercy in your heart. What you are going through is something that many Muslims go through and with the help of Allah, Most High, they overcome!
One of the names of the Quran is “The Cure” (al-Shifa). Whenever we feel sick, inwardly, or outwardly, we should turn to the Quran for its cure and remedy.
Allah, Most High says in the Quran:
  1. Say, “O My servants who have transgressed against themselves [by sinning], do not despair of the mercy of Allah. Indeed, Allah forgives all sins. Indeed, it is He who is the Forgiving, the Merciful.” [Quran 39:53]
Imam al-Qushayri comments on this verse saying: “By his saying “all sins”, Our Lord is telling us “I forgive you and I never leave you! I overlook your faults and I never leave you alone!”
[Qushayri, Lataif al-Isharaat]
  1. And when My servants ask you, [O Muhammad], concerning Me – indeed I am near. I respond to the invocation of the supplicant when he calls upon Me. So let them respond to Me [by obedience] and believe in Me that they may be [rightly] guided. [Quran 2:186]
Constantly bring this verse to heart and repeat the words of the great Imam Sahl al-Tustari: “Allah is with me. Allah is near me. Allah witnesses me.” [Ghazali, Ihya Ulum al-Din]
These statements mean that Allah’s mercy, generosity, kindness, and forgiveness are always with you, no matter how you feel.
My sincere advice to you is:

Do not give in to these thoughts for they are but whispers from the devil (waswasa). When they come to you, don’t pay them attention and let them flutter away. There will come a time where they will not return.

Make a habit of making fresh ablution (wudhu) before each obligatory prayer. This will help you in bring Allah, Most High to heart, and repel the devil. The Prophet Muhammad (Allah bless him and give him peace) said: “The key to paradise is prayer, and the key to prayer is ablution’.” [Tirmidhi, al-Sunan]

Keep yourself engaged in the remembrance of Allah, Most High. This can be by a daily routine of zikr, taking a class, or sitting with righteous people.

Repent to Allah, Most High from any wrongdoings with certainty that he will forgive you.

May Allah, Most High reward you abundantly for taking these steps toward him, and may he place clarity and contentment in your heart.
And Allah alone knows best.
[Ustadh] Omar Popal
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Should I Worry About the Evil Eye?

Question: Assalamu ‘alaykum. I have noticed that many of my friends are very worried about the evil eye or “nazar.” I recognize that the evil eye is real, but apart from saying mash’Allah and insh’Allah, I have never been too concerned about it. However, my friends also hesitate to discuss future plans or reveal information because of genuine fears of the evil eye. Is it wise to have such fears?

Answer:

Wa ‘alaykum assaalm wa rahmatullah wa barakatuh.

I pray you are well.

No, you should not go to lengths about worrying about the evil eye. This is very common in some communities, and it just causes paranoia.

Follow the sunnas of seeking protection through the recitation of the last three suras thrice morning and evening, and mention the name of Allah when seeing something you like. Beyond that, excessive worrying about a matter that cannot be controlled, which may or may not happen is not wise.

Please refer to this article, as it provides the Qur’anic perspective on the matter.

 

Please see:

https://seekersguidance.org/answers/black-magic-and-evil-eye/

https://seekersguidance.org/answers/general-counsel/how-can-someone-always-have-trust-in-allah/

 

May Allah bless you with the best of both worlds.
[Shaykh] Abdul-Rahim Reasat

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Abdul-Rahim Reasat began his studies in Arabic Grammar and Morphology in 2005. After graduating with a degree in English and History he moved to Damascus in 2007 where, for 18 months, he studied with many erudite scholars. In late 2008 he moved to Amman, Jordan, where he continued his studies for the next six years in Sacred Law (fiqh), legal theory (Usul al-fiqh), theology, hadith methodology, hadith commentary, and Logic. He was also given licenses of mastery in the science of Quranic recital and he was able to study an extensive curriculum of Quranic sciences, tafsir, Arabic grammar, and Arabic eloquence.

How Do I Balance Between Fear and Hope?

Question: How do I balance between fear and hope? 

Answer:

Dear questioner,

May Allah bless you and increase you in good.

You are doing excellent masha’Allah. Every Muslim should hope to gain this spiritual state of hope and fear. What you are feeling, for the most part, is right in line with the way of true believers.

 

Hope and Fear

One should always know that Allah forgives all sins and they should never fall into despair. Allah, Most High says in the Quran,

قُلْ يَا عِبَادِيَ الَّذِينَ أَسْرَفُوا عَلَىٰ أَنفُسِهِمْ لَا تَقْنَطُوا مِن رَّحْمَةِ اللَّهِ ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ يَغْفِرُ الذُّنُوبَ جَمِيعًا ۚ إِنَّهُ هُوَ الْغَفُورُ الرَّحِيمُ
Say, “O My servants who have transgressed against themselves [by sinning], do not despair of the mercy of Allah. Indeed, Allah forgives all sins. Indeed, it is He who is the Forgiving, the Merciful.” [Quran, 39: 53]

“Whoever does evil or wrongs their soul, then seeks the pardon of Allah, will find Allah Forgiving and Merciful.” [Quran, 4:110]

Verses of Fear:
وَاتَّقُوا النَّارَ الَّتِي أُعِدَّتْ لِلْكَافِرِينَ
And fear the Fire, which has been prepared for the disbelievers. [Quran, 3:131]

We also need to remember that there is punishment but that it always needs to be balanced with hope.

Therefore every time you feel a real sadness about your sins to a point where it starts becoming too much to bear, remember and have hope in your Lord. Have a good opinion that Allah will forgive you. To repent is to forget the sin. You repented and you have moved on. Simple as that.

The Prophet Muhammad (Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “The one who repents from sin is like the one who never committed it.” [Ibn Majah]

However if you slip ever, repent again immediately, this is the way of the true believer.

Hasan al Basri (Allah be pleased with him) was asked about a believer who constantly sins and then repents and then sins and repents (continuing in this manner) He responded by saying, “That is the character of the believer.”

 

Balance and Moderation

As long as you do not despair nor get too comfortable in the mercy of Allah where you commit sins without regret, then you are balanced. Remember to always stay balanced. Too much fear without hope leads to despair. Despair is dangerous as it can lead to a path that is not healthy at all. This could be depression or even giving up on doing good deeds at all.

This is why if you ponder on the names of Allah Most High, you will see the balance. A believer rejoices in the good news of the mercy of Allah, in the blessing of the mercy to mankind, in the beautiful religion of truth.

So stay happy and joyous, yet regretful over your wrong actions. But you must go on to live life also.

 

Humans Are Not Perfect

Abu Huraira reported: The Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace)  said, “By Him in whose hand is my soul, if you did not sin, Allah would replace you with people who would sin and they would seek forgiveness from Allah and he would forgive them.” [Muslim]

 

Further Advice

I would recommend you make some quiet time and listen to this wonderful talk and you will enjoy and feel better.

https://seekersguidance.org/podcast-feeds/dont-fear-truly-god-is-with-us-the-unconditional-hope-shaykh-faraz-rabbani/

May Allah continue to inspire you with faith and wisdom and guidance and piety.

Allah alone gives success.

[Imam] Yama Niazi
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Is Swearing On One’s Life Permissible?

Question: Can I swear by my own life?
Answer: 
Dear questioner,
Thank you for your important question.
Saying: “I swear on my life that I did or did not do…” would not constitute an oath in Islam as it is not taken “in the name of Allah”.
With that being said, One should avoid swearing in general and specifically avoid swear by other than the name of Allah, Most High. The Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “Indeed Allah has forbidden you from swearing by your fathers; so whoever is going swear an oath, then let him swear by Allah or stay silent.” [Bukhari]
It is impermissible to swear on anything other than the name of Allah, Most High.
Please read these detailed answers on the topic of oaths and swearing.
And Allah alone knows best.
[Ustadh] Omar Popal
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

What Is the Nature Of the Prophet’s Intercession?

Question: How do we understand the hadith where the Prophet says “I cannot save you from Allah’s Punishment..” in light of the Intercession of the Prophet on Judgment Day?

Answer:

In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate,

 

Only Allah Most High Can Save

Intercession is essentially an admission to the fact that no one can intrinsically save another from the punishment of Allah Most High and that whatever Allah Most High wishes to occur – will.

Therefore, intercession is not the Prophet’s intrinsic prevention of Allah’s wrath.

Rather it is His appeal for Allah’s mercy toward His community. In the end, only what Allah Most High wants occurs, however, Allah has promised the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) that his intercession will be accepted.

 

A Point Of Belief

It is a point of correct belief to affirm the ultimate intercession of the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace). This point is affirmed by the Qur’an, the Prophetic narrations, and the consensus of the scholars. [Laqqani, Jawhara al-Tawhid]

Imam Laqqani (Allah have mercy on him) said, in his famous work on Islamic creed, “It is necessary to believe in the intercession of the one whose intercession is accepted, Muhammad, ahead of all, do not deny.” [Ibid.]

 

The Ultimate Intercession

Imam Bukhari narrates a hadith describing the Day of Judgment and the people seeking intercession from the Prophets until they are directed to the Prophet Muhammad (Allah bless him and give him peace). Though the previous Prophets denied interceding for the people, our Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) will say, “I am for it (i.e. this is my duty). I will then seek permission from my Lord and He will permit me. He will then inspire me with praises by which I will extol Him; I don not recall them now; I will then fall in prostration. He (i.e Allah Most High) will say, ‘O Muhammad! Raise your head and speak, you will be heard. Ask, you will be given. Intercede, and your intercession will be accepted.’ Then I will say, ‘O my Lord! My community. My community….'” [Bukhari]

 

Only Those Who Allah Permits Can Intercede

Allah Most High says, “On that Day no intercession will be of any benefit, except by those granted permission by the Most Compassionate and whose words are agreeable to Him.” [Qur’an; 20:109]

 

Summary

The Prophet’s negation of his own ability to save others from Allah’s punishment refers to the absolute sense (i.e. He is negating his ability to intrinsically stop the decree of Allah). Allah’s acceptance of His intercession is an honor that Allah bestows upon him.

This shows us the extent of the greatness of the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) and his status with Allah Most High.

I hope this helps,
Allah knows best.
[Shaykh] Yusuf Weltch

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Yusuf Weltch is a graduate from Tarim; a student of Habib Umar and other luminaries; and authorized teachers of the Qur’an and the Islamic sciences

Can I Repent From Incorrect Beliefs?

Question: Is it true that someone who has errant beliefs (mubtadi’) can never repent?

Answer:

Wa alaykum assalam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

Dear questioner,

Thank you for your important question.

To repent from heretical beliefs (kufr), one simply enters Islam. For example, to repent from being an Isma’ili, one simply enters Islam.

To repent from errant beliefs (bid’a) that are wrong but do not constitute disbelief, such as personal simply learn Sunni creed, and abandons ideas that are not Sunni.

If such a person did not leave such beliefs and was not excused due to ignorance, they would meet Allah in sin, even if they repented from other sins.

Please see:
https://seekersguidance.org/answers/general-counsel/how-to-deal-with-sectarian-differences/
https://seekersguidance.org/answers/general-counsel/who-or-what-is-a-salafi/
https://seekersguidance.org/answers/islamic-belief/human-actions-bida-shirk-related/

It is worth noting that even though having errant beliefs (bid’a) is sinful, there does not seem to be any sound hadiths that mention that the repentance or actions of someone with errant beliefs will not be accepted. One such hadith has come in Ibn Majah and Ilal Ibn Abi Hatim and it reads, “Allah has refused to accept the deeds of someone of errant beliefs (sahib bid’a) until he leaves his errant beliefs.” This hadith, among others like it, is weak. [Ilal Ibn Abi Hatim; al-Ilal al-Mutanahiya, Ibn al-Jawzi; Sunan Ibn Majah, ed. Shaykh Shu’ayb al-Arna’ut]

While the concept is true, it seems like such hadiths are actually the words of  Hasan al-Basri, Sufyan, and other early Muslims. [al-Shari’a, al-Ajurri; al-Sunna, Lalkai]

I pray this helps.

[Ustadh] Farid Dingle

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadh Farid Dingle has completed extensive years of study in the sciences of the Arabic language and the various Islamic Sciences. During his studies, he also earned a CIFE Certificate in Islamic Finance. Over the years he has developed a masterful ability to craft lessons that help non-Arabic speakers gain a deep understanding of the language. He currently teaches courses in the Arabic Language.

Did Adam Sin In Paradise?

Question: Assalamu ‘alaykum. As we know prophet Adam ate from the forbidden tree, so I want to know was this a sin? I have read that Prophets are sinless, so how did the Prophet Adam eat from that tree? He also asked for forgiveness from Allah for that thing.

Answer:

Wa ‘alaykum assalam wa wa rahmatullah wa barakatuh.

No, the Prophet Adam (Allah bless him and give him peace) did not sin. Sinning requires a determination and resolve to do a forbidden act. For example, someone who takes a sip of white wine thinking it is water or lemonade is not sinful – because he did not resolve to commit a sin.

In the same way, the Prophet Adam (Allah bless him and give him peace) did not have a resolve to do what was forbidden for him. Allah said, “Indeed We took a pledge from Adam in the past, but he forgot, and we did not find that he had a resolve [to break his pledge].” [Qur’an, 20: 115] [Zada, Hashiya Zada ‘ala Tafsir al-Baydawi]

He asked forgiveness because he made a mistake, and was saddened by this. It was a display of his nature being the opposite of that of Iblis. Please refer to this lesson for more details.

Please see:

https://seekersguidance.org/answers/islamic-belief/was-the-earth-created-before-adam-or-after-him-as-a-punishment/

https://seekersguidance.org/answers/islamic-belief/adam-eves-children-marry-else-offspring/

May Allah grant you the best of both worlds.
[Shaykh] Abdul-Rahim Reasat

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Abdul-Rahim Reasat began his studies in Arabic Grammar and Morphology in 2005. After graduating with a degree in English and History he moved to Damascus in 2007 where, for 18 months, he studied with many erudite scholars. In late 2008 he moved to Amman, Jordan, where he continued his studies for the next six years in Sacred Law (fiqh), legal theory (Usul al-fiqh), theology, hadith methodology, hadith commentary, and Logic. He was also given licenses of mastery in the science of Quranic recital and he was able to study an extensive curriculum of Quranic sciences, tafsir, Arabic grammar, and Arabic eloquence.

Is It Ok To Refuse the Maidens In Paradise?

Question: As we know, all permissible wishes will be fulfilled in Jannah, so is it permissible to live only with my worldly wife without any Hoor Ain? I am not rejecting them as they are among the bounties of Jannah, I just want to live alone with my wife Here and in the Hereafter. Is this a transgression? I love her so much and do not desire any other woman, not even a wide-eyed maiden of Paradise.

Answer:

Assalamu alaykum,

Thank you for your question. You have made my heart melt with your question, and I pray that Allah gives you and your wife the very best happiness, love, and devotion that any couple could have and increase your love by leaps and bounds along with the love of Allah and His Messenger.

You will not be forced to be with anyone that you do not want to be with in Paradise. Your desire to only be with your wife is not a sin or transgression or ingratitude. May Allah reward you and guide you to the very best in this world and the next.

https://seekersguidance.org/articles/general-artices/what-does-it-mean-to-love-allah-friday-reminder-series/

[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, tafseer, 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 recently moved back to Mississauga, Canada, where she lives with her family.

 

Is Studying Evolution Permissible?

Question: Assalamu ‘alaykum. I am a grade 10 student, and I am learning about evolution and natural selection. Are there some things in evolution (Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution, humans evolving from monkeys) that I should not take seriously. What is the ruling between Islamic knowledge and scientific knowledge if they clash, and could it be possible for both of them to exist together?

Answer:

Wa ‘alaykum assalam wa rahmatullah wa barakatuh.

I pray you are well.

It is permissible to learn about evolution. Just be clear on the point that the Prophet Adam (Allah bless him and give him peace) did not evolve. He was created in his perfected form. The Theory of Evolution is not compatible with this reality.

Please refer to this answer for more details and information on recognized experts in various scientific fields who do not subscribe to this theory.

May Allah grant you the best of both worlds.

[Shaykh] Abdul-Rahim Reasat

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Abdul-Rahim Reasat began his studies in Arabic Grammar and Morphology in 2005. After graduating with a degree in English and History he moved to Damascus in 2007 where, for 18 months, he studied with many erudite scholars. In late 2008 he moved to Amman, Jordan, where he continued his studies for the next six years in Sacred Law (fiqh), legal theory (Usul al-fiqh), theology, hadith methodology, hadith commentary, and Logic. He was also given licenses of mastery in the science of Quranic recital and he was able to study an extensive curriculum of Quranic sciences, tafsir, Arabic grammar, and Arabic eloquence.

Are Jews and Christians Disbelievers Like the Kuffar?

Question:  Are Jews and Christians considered as disbelievers meaning kuffars or are they categorized differently as People of the Book?

Answer:

Dear questioner,

May Allah bless you and increase you in good.

 

Disbelieving In Allah and His Messenger

Allah says in the Quran, “Indeed, those who disbelieve from the People of the Book and the polytheists will be in the Fire of Hell, to stay there forever. They are the worst of ˹all˺ beings.” [Quran, 98:6]

The Jews and Christians are considered disbelievers.

 

The People of the Book

This is a reference given to them because they had Prophets and revelation sent to them. They possessed at one point guidance and grace.

We can eat meat they slaughter with some details and requirements through (please see this https://seekersguidance.org/answers/general-counsel/eating-the-meat-of-the-people-of-the-book/. )

Muslim men are allowed to marry Jewish and Christian women.

See details here ( https://seekersguidance.org/answers/shafii-fiqh/allowed-marry-christian-woman-shafii/ )

 

Salvation

In terms of salvation, do remember that Christians do not consider Muslims to be saved. They are very clear about this, and we as Muslims need to be clear with them also that one must embrace Islam to enter Paradise.

Allah says, “Whoever seeks a religion other than Islam will never have it accepted from him, and shall be of those who have truly failed in the next life” [Surat al- Imran 3:85]

So in short summary, yes they are considered disbelievers under the category of the People of the Book.

 

Further Recommended Reading

https://seekersguidance.org/answers/islamic-belief/universal-validity-of-religions-and-the-issue-of-takfir/

Allah alone grants success.

[Imam] Yamam Niazi
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani