Mar 20, 2012

Islam Daily

By Hiba Khan


“Living Islam Daily” - When I was given this topic to write about, I was at a loss. How could I preach about living Islam daily? My prayers were rushed and meaningless, my Fajr almost non-existent, and I couldn’t think of anything Islamic I was doing in my daily life except hijab.

… Seriously?

Is that all that had become of me? I was avoiding it for a long time, but now I was face-to-face with my dreaded reflection: a rotten, extremely rusty, almost dead heart. The weeks prior to putting my pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard), I went through what I’d call a spiritual breakdown.

After having completed my Qur’an course, I got married, far from home, the place where I found the Guidance and my friends in Deen, to a place where I was all alone. Unfortunately, the lovely marital union distracted me to such an extent that I forgot the real purpose of life, which is to worship Allah. Whether it was in settling down, or making the love of my husband the centre of my universe, or trying to strike a balance between pleasing the in-laws and avoiding conflicts, or having to mingle with people more than I ever did in my life, or cooking and cleaning (something I had never done pre-marriage) - I was distracted. I had lost focus. And because of this lack of focus, I ended up wasting whatever free time I had, and even ended up committing some major sins that I’d never thought of doing even in my wildest dreams (yes, an idle mind really is a devil’s workshop).

A Qur’an teacher once told us that it’s very easy (to have a high level of eeman and practice Islam) when we’re in a classroom environment; it’s when those classes are over, and you’re left all on your own, that the test begins. And apparently, I failed that test.

It’s one thing when you’re sinning because you’re ignorant, or because you simply have no interest in following Islam. But it’s another thing when you have already studied the Quran and Sunnah for a couple of years, and yet, when you’re out of that “environment”, you let go; you complacently think your eeman will automatically take care of itself, since you already have all the knowledge. That, my friends, is a most dangerous assumption. And that is where living Islam daily comes in.

The Prophet sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam warned us to guard our connection with the Qur’an by reviewing it regularly, because:

“By the One in Whose hand is my soul, it runs away faster than camels that are released from their tying ropes.”  [Bukhari and Muslim] 

I have experienced this happen, and this should be one of the biggest fears for one who values his eeman even in the slightest.

Allah has described possibly every type of person in the Qur’an, making it a universal mirror for members of mankind to check themselves; not excluded is the description of one whom Allah gifts knowledge and guidance, and yet he neglects it:

“And recite to them, [O Muhammad], the news of him to whom We gave [knowledge of] Our ayat (signs, verses), but he detached himself from them; so Shaytaan pursued him, and he became of those who went astray.”  [Surah Al-A’raaf 7: 175]

SubhanAllah! This is an epic warning to one whom Allaah had blessed with knowledge.

The time when we are new in our endeavor of seeking knowledge, is a time we have a natural spiritual high where we are passionate about living, breathing, talking and sharing Islam, greedily wanting everyone to feel the same way we do, to see the beauty in the Truth that we see.

It is when this “high” wears off (after a couple of years) that things become critical. And if we become complacent, things WILL get critical. This is when we gradually become detached without even realizing it.

Allah has indirectly told us something very profound in this ayah - detach yourself from the Qur’an, and Shaytan will actively pursue you. There is no “neutral” way. You can either have the Qur’an play a part in your daily life and still be (albeit struggling) on the right path, or you can leave the Remembrance altogether and Shaytan will try to become your best friend. And it won’t be difficult for him, considering your lack of defense and ammunition.

So for all those who had studied the Qur’an once upon a time, and it feels like exactly that - “once upon a time” - then it’s time to rekindle our eman, because it’s the most precious thing. We already know all the theory; we just have to start reviewing it and put it into practice with newfound zeal. Live Islam daily, starting with small steps (which may be great in the sight of Allah):

Get your Fajr and Isha straight
There’s nothing worse than feeling like an utter hypocrite. Not only do you feel like a hopeless failure incapable of performing the basics, but it is also a complete deterrent to doing anything good at all (because, what’s the point?).

Bring the khushoo (focus) back in your salaah
Start with doing justice to Soorat-ul-Fatihah. If you don’t know the word-to-word meaning, learn it. Pause after every ayah and reflect, as this is what the Prophet sal Allahu alayhi wasallam used to do too. You can even pause after “Alhamdulillah”, taking a moment to feel grateful to Allah for all that He’s given you, and then go back and repeat the ayah in full. Also, after the durood, read duas from the Qur’an or Sunnah that you are especially in need of at the time; these can be duas regarding forgiveness, cleansing of the heart from hypocrisy, protection from the evil of your nafs, etc.

Guard your tongue
Stop complaining, even for little things like your computer running slow! Being ungrateful is a trait of the Shaytan, so be conscious not to be like him. Remember that the angels are writing your every word down, so if you have also started using bad language in any form, stop that too.

Stop wasting time on non-beneficial things
I had started wasting a lot of time on looking at “memes” on Facebook, considering how addictive they are. The moment you are “free”, be alert, because Shaytan’s going to tempt you in some form or the other. Engage yourself in listening to the Qur’an, reading it, or making the dhikr of Allah. These things can never go waste and will only make your scale heavier in good deeds inshaAllah. Any time we waste will be a source of regret on the Day of Judgement.

Reading the Morning and Evening duas
Starting and ending our day with the praise and glorification of Allah, asking for His guidance and protection, is a surefire way of keeping the right focus throughout the day, with less attacks from Shaytan. By taking out time to remember Allah and acknowledge our weaknesses at these two specific times of the day, we are also disciplining ourselves.

Bring the Sunnah back in your life
Whether it’s sleeping on your right side, spreading the salaam, giving charity in forms of money and kindness - do it all with the intention of attaining reward from Allah subhaanahu wa ta’aala. Read a hadith every day and make an action-plan according to it. The Prophet sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam said that the best deeds are those that are consistent, even if small.

And last but not least:

Ask for guidance… consistently
Even when you feel like your heart is full of light and your intentions couldn’t get any purer, thank Allah and beg Him to never take this guidance away, because without it we don’t even have the ability to say a single Allahu Akbar. Do not become complacent for even a day, thinking that once you are guided, there is a stamp of guaranteed lifelong guidance on you. Nay, guidance is a lifelong pursuit coupled with good actions.

Hence, this beautiful dua from the Qur’an is a must-have in our daily dua list:
“Our Lord! Let not our hearts deviate after You have guided us, and grant us mercy from Yourself. Truly, You are the Bestower.”  [Surah Al‘Imraan 3: 8]

I'd love to hear your views on this topic. Please post below! :)


jazakillah khair for this, Hiba. This is a BEAUTIFUL reminder alhamdulillah, and written so honestly, it touches the heart. May Allah make it a means of beneficial knowledge for you and us (who pass it on :)) and keep our intentions sincere. Ameen! This article brings to light an advice we received from our group in charge to keep our connection to the Quran long after we're done with our course. Subhanallah, such wisdom in the advice. I notice that these advice came from personal experience, which makes them even more valuable subhanallah. Hugs from your sister in Islam. Juli

Alhumdulilah, I'm sharing. :)

I think most of us have gone through what you have described. such an honest article - like a mirror! Jazakallah for this.

super!!!! i loved ur article....May Allah reward you with the best of of His blessings:) i was going through the same phase...have got so busy with kids n house chores..but inshaAllah i will take some time out now for renewing my eman...

thanks...lots of love for the sake of Allah!!

Mash Allah... beautiful article
May Allah reward u for it :)

So true. Mashallah written with such sincerity. The only way to maintain any semblance of eman is to be constantly involved in learning the deen or teaching it. Preferably both :) 

mashaAllah!! I loved every single line written in this article...I could easily relate to everything that was raised here!! masha'Allah! May Allah swt reward you!

Bless u! This is like a wake up call to most of us...much needed!
JazakAllah khair sis :)

awww. thank you for your beautiful comment! i feel honoured to get
a comment from you as i have seen your name in so many places on the web
(baarakAllaahu feek!). i think i read somewhere that you are doing the Al-Huda
course. i, too, did a course from Al-Huda... i'm not surprised the
teachers/group in charges are giving the same advice :) subhaanAllaah

jazaakillaah khayr for ur beautiful dua... and yes, house chores take up a lot of mental/physical space!
love u too for the sake of Allaah :)

u couldn't have said it better!

i thought i was the only one but i guess a lot of us go through this, eh... may Allaah help us!

:) jazaakillaah khayr

SubhanAllah..thank you Sister for you honesty and for this great much needed reminder. JazakAllah kheir - inshallah I pray that you are in good Iman always - and for all of us to keep with guidance from his greatness Allah. Truley Islam is a lifestyle...and we need to practice it everday inshAllah...One last word - you are not alone and many of us have been or are still in the place that you described at the beginning which is why your words have a heavy weight for all of us. Truly this is much needed - thank you sister. Please Allah stay with us and guide us always even in our times of weakness. Ameen.

Allahu Akbar! this is lovely, u really nailed it.

MashaAllah. Straight from the heart...may Allah keep your Eemaan & spirit high till your last breath. And ours too.


May Allah (swt) grant you the best of whatever halal your heart desires.. Due to work commitments and various other endeavours my dunya appeared to have superceded my akhirah.. I make du'a that Allah writes you from amongst Al-Mina Ar-Rashideen ( The Rightly Guided)

Asalaamu Alaikum wa rahmatulaahi wa barakaatuhu.

Bilal Dunn

your "last word" touched me... jazaakillaah khayr for your duas and may Allaah bless you with good health and eemaan always, aameen!

subhaanAllaah, what a beautiful dua... aameen ya Rabb, accept it!!!

wa alaykum us salaam wa rahmatullaahi wa barakaatuhu
same to you

Hiba!! Jazakillah Khair for the reminder ! I feel exactly the same way after the course. Also with my daughter now things are hectic.. I keep wishing she would sleep and when she's sleeping I just waste my time. Each time can be utilized in doing khair. Jazakillah khair for the dua in the end. I'll remember to recite it in my duas :-)

Asalamu alaykum Hiba,
I did the alhuda course, and still working on it outside of the full-time one. I'm getting the same thoughts and feelings - Shaytan really attacks you when you have idle time... I found myself to be in a very scary place subhanAllah. Definitely guidance is a gift that one should not take for granted and one that we have to ask for consistently from Allah. May Allah awaken our hearts and guide them to the truth, and protect us. We're in dire need of His protection!!

Subhanallah. It is nothing but the mercy of Allah swt that I read this post. It is indeed one of the biggest miracles in my life. I was exactly in the same situation as you, sister. Missing fajr almost consistently and no Quran in my life after marriage and a child. It was just a couple of days ago I saw a beautiful video of brother Nouman Ali Khan about 'Quran al Fajr' and started getting back on track. Subhanallah, now I am reading your article. May Allah swt reward you with all that is good in this world and the Hereafter. May Allah swt make us steadfast in our prayers and make Quran our ultimate guide. Insha Allah I will read one hadith a day from today onward. I got my Quran back. Alhamdhulillah

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