Why does Allah let calamity or hardship befall us? {ISLAM}

Posted on August 21, 2017 · Posted in Blog, General, Personal

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Question

If Allah has written for us a hardship or a calamity, why does Allah let that calamity or hardship befall us? Is it because Allah wants to test if we put our trust and reliance upon Him during a hardship or is it a matter which only Allah knows? Is it true that if good fortune and bad fortune befall a Muslim, the Muslim can get good from the good and the bad because if something bad happens he can put his trust in Allah from which he will get reward and if something good happens it can be beneficial to him? What should one do if a hardship has befalled him? Can you mention every act to do when such a thing occurs for e.g. Sabr, trust in Allah, Salat, etc.? The Prophet used to offer a two Rak’ah prayer even when a strong wind blew, how do you perform the two Rak’ah Prayer? Is it just like the two Rak’ah of Fajr prayer?

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allah, and that Muhammad is His slave and Messenger.

We will summarize the answer to your questions in the following points:

1-    You should know that Allah is not questioned about what He does; Allah Says (what means): {He is not questioned about what He does, but they will be questioned.} [Quran 21:23]

2-    There is wisdom behind the rulings and legislation that Allah legislated in His book or on the tongue of His Prophet  and a Muslim should accept it and submit himself to it whether or not he knows the wisdom.

3-    The affliction and trials that befall a person may be for the following reasons:

A-  For wiping out his sins, as the Prophet  said: “No fatigue, nor disease, nor sorrow, nor sadness, nor hurt, nor distress befalls a Muslim, even if it were the prick he receives from a thorn, except that Allaah expiates some of his previous sins for that.” [Muslim]

B-   To elevate his rank and increase his rewards as it is the case when Allah afflicted His Prophets, may Allah exalt their mention. The Prophet  said: “Those who face the toughest trials and hardships are the Prophets, then the most pious people and then those less than them (in terms of piety); a person continues to be afflicted until he walks on earth without having a sin (on his record of deeds).” [Al-Bukhari]. The scholars  said: ”The Prophets, may Allah exalt their mention, are afflicted so that their reward is multiplied and their excellence is completed, and so that their patience and contentment [with Allah’s Predestination] is known to people, and so, they [the people] would follow their example. Their affliction is neither a deficiency (in them) nor a punishment.

C-   Testing the Muslims and distinguishing them from the hypocrites. Allah Says (what means): {Do the people think that they will be left to say, We believe and they will not be tried? But We have certainly tried those before them, and Allah will surely make evident those who are truthful, and He will surely make evident the liars.} [Quran 29:2-3]. Therefore, Allah tries and tests His Slaves in order to distinguish the true believers from other people, and so that the patient ones are distinguished from those who are impatient.

D-  A believer is sometimes punished with afflictions because of some sins that he had committed; the Prophet  said: ”A person is deprived of provision (that was written for him) because of a sin that he/she had committed, and there is nothing that can change the Decree except the supplication, and the only thing that increases one’s life span is righteousness.” [Ahmad, An-Nasaa’i and Ibn Maajah]

A believer should be patient with all the calamities that befall him so that he would get the reward of the patient people. The Prophet said: “How wonderful is the case of a believer for there is good in every affair of his and this is not the case with anyone else except the believer. If he is blessed with prosperity, he thanks Allah, thus there is a good for him in it, and if he is afflicted, he endures it patiently and there is good for him in that.” [Muslim] Therefore, if a believer is blessed with good things and prosperity and he is grateful to Allah for it, then this is good [for him] as Allah loves the people who are grateful to Him and He will grant them even with more blessings. Allah Says (what means): {And [remember] when your Lord proclaimed, “If you are grateful, I will surely increase you [in favor].} [Quran 14:7] On the other hand, if a believer is patient in hardship, then he gets the reward of the patient people; Allah Says (what means): {…but give good tidings to the patient. Who, when disaster strikes them, say, “Indeed we belong to Allah, and indeed to Him we will return.’’ Those are the ones upon whom are blessings from their Lord and mercy. And it is those who are the [rightly] guided.} [Quran 2:155-157]

Moreover, the Prophet  informed us that whoever is patient over the death of his child, and he does not grieve; rather, he praises Allah, then Allah will build a house in Paradise for him as a reward for his patience and gratefulness. The Prophet  said: ”When someone’s child dies, Allah asks His angels: ‘‘Have you taken away the soul of the child of My Servant? They would answer: ‘‘Yes, we have.’’ Then Allah asks them: “What did My Servant say?’’ They would answer: ‘‘He praised You and affirmed: ‘To Allah we belong and to Him we shall return’.’’ Thereupon Allah says: ‘‘Build for My Servant a house in Paradise and name it Baitul-Hamd ‘The House of Praise’.’’ [At-Tirmithi]

Therefore, if a calamity befalls a believer, he should say that [To Allah we belong and to Him we shall return] and he should return to Allah and remember Him and perform the prayer as much as possible because when a serious difficulty would befall the Prophet  he would perform the prayer.

Among the matters that help one bear hardship is to seek refuge with Allah from the devil, to perform ablution, to recite the Quran, to strengthen one’s relationship with Allah and to repent from committing grave major sins.

As regards what a Muslim should do when a strong wind blows, then he should supplicate with the supplication of the Prophet : “O Allah! I ask You for what is good in it, and the good which it contains, and the good of that which it was sent for. And I seek refuge with You from what is evil in it, what evil it contains, and the evil of that which it was sent for.’’ [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]

As far as we know, there is an agreement among the scholars about saying the above supplication when the wind blows.

As regards performing a prayer when a strong wind blows, then the scholars  differed in opinion about this matter; some scholars permitted it whereas some others prohibited it.

The evidence for its permissibility is that it is included in the general meaning of the Prophetic narration reported by Hudhayfah  as he narrated that “Whenever the Prophet  is faced with a difficult matter he would resort to the prayer.” [Ahmad and Abu Daawood]

However, some other scholars  are of the view that it is permissible for a Muslim to prostrate when the wind blows acting according to the narration by Ibn ‘Abbaas  who said that the Prophet  said: ”If it happens that you see a Sign [from Allah], then prostrate.’’ [Abu Daawood, At-Tirmithi]

Imaam At-Teebiyy  said: ‘‘His [Prophet’s] saying ”If it happens that you see a Sign [from Allah], then prostrate.’’, is general, so if the word ‘Sign’ means the eclipse of the sun and the moon, then what is meant by ‘prostrate’ is the prayer, and if the meaning is other than this, like the blowing of a strong wind or an earthquake, then what is apparently meant (in this narration) is to prostrate, but it is also possible to explain it to mean the prayer as it is reported “Whenever the Prophet  is faced with a difficult matter he would resort to the prayer.

In any case, all the scholars  are on agreement on the supplication as we already explained, as regards the prostration and the prayer, then some scholars  agreed on each of them, and whichever of them a person does, he is following some righteous predecessors of this nation.

Allah Knows best.

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