Umm Zahra – freelance writer
When the Muslims were faced with the imminent battle of Badr, they were weaponless, materially weak and 313 in numbers as history records. On the contrary the disbelievers were armed to the teeth, strong in resources and numbers, raging with anger and hatred.
The prophet (sa) had a team of spiritually determined believers who were prepared to go forth to fight Allah’s (swt) enemy. The night before the battle the prophet (sa) commanded all the combatants to sleep early, while he committed himself to a passionate Qiyam ul lail invoking upon his Lord to grant them victory. The prophet (sa) cried until his cloak fell off his shoulders.
Abu Bakr (rta) approached the prophet (sa) and said: “O Messenger of Allah, this prayer of yours to your Lord will suffice you, and He will fulfill for you what He has promised you!”
The muslims won the battle of Badr which was nothing short of a miracle. Allah (swt) responded to the prophet’s (sa) prayer.
Jinan Yousef rightly said: “The prophet (sa) and his companions knew something that is not often displayed today. They were able to face difficulty with a certain determination in their heart; they were grateful for even the seemingly small blessings ; they took pleasure in praying at night while the people were asleep.”
They realized that when they sought Allah (swt) they will never be let down. Chasing akhirah had a far better result and reward than chasing dunya. Allah (swt) always satisfied them.
Conversely when we desire the material world what happens? It is like consuming something sweet. It appeals to us, when we have it, we want more of it or maybe a different flavour of it. Once the sugar reaches inside our blood it peaks our pleasure. But when the sugar level crashes, it brings us down too spiritually and emotionally.
That is the nature of Dunya. Those who indulge into it without any disciplined boundaries, moderation or purpose in life, they never feel satiated. They want more, they want different, they desire whats forbidden, they forget why are they in this Dunya in the first place, they forget the Akhirah and tread on a self-destructive course. Most significantly they end up empty.
People chase love, enter forbidden relationships and come out of it with a baggage of sins. People love power, hence abuse their status and opportunities grabbing other’s rights. Once the power fades, they end up in deplorable conditions. People love money and earn impermissible income that feeds Haram to their family. Haram earnings lead to Haram actions.
Many times their own spouses and children become a source of suffering for them. People do the most outrageous and absurd things on the social media to gain public attention. Once someone better than them emerges their limelight is gone leaving them envious.
Dunya was meant to be the water on which our life boat was to travel taking us to Akhirah. But we have let this water gush in and it is now drowning us into our pool of untamed and uncountable desires.
The least we can do to fix this equation is to ask Allah (swt) sincerely of what our prophet (sa) sought regularly:
“O our Lord! Give us good in this world, and good in the hereafter and save us from the torment of the fire.” (Al Baqarah 2:201)
And remember, when you chase only Dunya you return empty-handed but when you chase Akhirah, you return home fulfilled.