Thursday, December 8, 2011

TWENTY TIPS TO BRING YOU HAPPINESS


1)BE GRATEFUL    

       Be grateful to Allah and be grateful to His creatures. There is a hadeeth of the Messenger of Allah(saws) that states **One who is not grateful to people is not grateful to Allah**
      Allah's blessings are countless. think about your sense of sight, hearing, smell, touch, etc... think about your health, wealth, family and friends; think about your kids, your parents, and your spouse.

    Allah(swt) says in His book : Surah Ibrahim 14:34
14:34
    And He gave you from all you asked of Him. And if you should count the favor of Allah , you could not enumerate them. Indeed, mankind is [generally] most unjust and ungrateful.

  Even if you are encountering some problems or inconveniences, think about those who are in a worse condition.

    Once Imaam Maalik was walking when he met an old, blind, handicapped man sitting on the side of the road praying and thanking Allah for His blessings. The imaam stopped and asked the old worshipper, "what are you giving thanks for??" the old man replied, "Didn't Allah bless me with a healthy heart to glorify Him with?" 

    remember, there is always a divine blessing that we need to be thankful for; there is always a benefaction, a grace that we need to glorify and praise Allah for. do not eye other people's blessings thinking that you are deprived in some way.

2) DO NOT WAIT FOR A REWARD  

   Allah says in the Qur'an : 
22:77
O you who have believed, bow and prostrate and worship your Lord and do good - that you may succeed. (Surah Hajj:77)
 In the same verse of the Qur'an ordering us to bow down and prostrate and worship Allah, He directed us to perform good deeds for others. Acts of worship fill your heart with mercy and compassion, compelling you to serve your society and the whole of humanity. benefaction to others is a sign of the acceptance of your acts of worship.
        The first beneficiary of your acting to help others is yourself; this pure act of unselfishness feeds your soul, bosts your sense of self-worth and brings you closer to Allah.  do not wait for any human thanks or wordly benefits- your real reward will be from Allah Himself: 
76:8
And they give food in spite of love for it to the needy, the orphan, and the captive,

76:9
[Saying], "We feed you only for the countenance of Allah . We wish not from you reward or gratitude.

76:10
Indeed, We fear from our Lord a Day austere and distressful."
76:11
So Allah will protect them from the evil of that Day and give them radiance and happiness
76:12
And will reward them for what they patiently endured [with] a garden [in Paradise] and silk [garments].
- Surah Insan 76:8-12 

       You will find happiness in feeding the hungry, sheltering the homeless; you will feel comfort in the smile of an orphan and the felicity of the poor. Ghazali the Younger said, "Benefaction to others is a delight to the heart."
       Imaam Ahmed ibn Hanbal once told a story about a woman who left her son to look for a shady place to feed him a loaf of bread. while she was looking around, a kidnapper came and took the boy to sell him into slavery. When she returned and discovered that her little boy was gone, she burst into tears. Meanwhile, a beggar passed by asking for food: despite her pain and fears, she handed the man the loaf of bread she had been carrying for her son. In just a few minutes, the kidnapper came back with her little boy.
He told her, "As i was trying to sell him, a strange voice from within said to me, 'Don't you have a son? Aren't you afraid that he might face the same fate one day?' So, I came back to return your boy."
The woman took her child in her arms and said, "Glory be to Allah, who has accepted my loaf of bread(as charity)!"
          Prophet Muhammad (saws) said:  **Allah will help His servant as long as he helps his brother. **
 
           One of Allah's Names is 'The Multiplier of Rewards' (ash- Shakoor) He rewards even a small good deed with anabundant recompense oth in this life and in the hereafter.
        Imaam Ahmed ibn Miskeen told the story of Abu Nasr, a fisherman who was so poor that he could not even feed his family. One day when the fisherman passed by the Imaam, the Imaam asked him to follow him to the sea. There, the Imaam pronounced the Name of Allah the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful and ordered Abu Nasr to cast his fishing net. Out came a big fish. Abu Nasr sold the fish and bought some food for his wife and child. while heading home, Abu Nasr passed by a woman and her little child crying from hunger; he could not help but hand them the food he had bought for his family. Once again, he was going home to his hungry boy, grieved and penniless. before reaching his house, Abu Nasr heartd a man calling his name; that stranger handed him a small parcel and said,
"Your father had lent me some money years ago before he passed away. I did not have the means to return it. As soon as I could afford it, I came looking all over for you until I finally found you. Here you are, this is your money, my son." The poor fisherman opened the parcel, andto his surprise, it contained 30,000 dirhams. (pieces of silver)!
  
         This is no fairy tale, this is a true story; and there is certainly no coincidence, believe me! The grieving mother who lost her little boy and the poor fisherman had onething in common: they were both very sincer in their acts and were both really faithful to Allah.
        In every community, there are innumerable different ways to help others. anything you do will not only help the world, it will also help you. You will experience rewards that cannot be attained in any other way. It does no have to be money; you can give of your time or your skills. Remember, though:always be sincere in your actions and seek only Allah's reward.

3) BE  A BELIEVER   

            You experience what you believe in. You only need to adjust your inner feelings, keep your self-esteem and confidence and above all, have Faith and true belief in your Creator - in Allah. It is all in your mind: the power of your thoughts generates your sentiments upon which your reactions will depend. Every great action started with just an idea, a mere thought or an opinion that came into awareness to result in effective changes in peoples lives. Our belief generates a tremendous power, a driving force that achieves great results andd actualizes our visions.


         If you anticipate abundance and prosperity, benefaction will follow, but if your thoughts are gloomy and pessimistic, evil will follow. Allah (swt) says in hadeeth qudsi: **I am as my servant thinks I am, and I am with him if he calls Me .....**


        Dr.Albert Ellis outlined an 'ABC' system to help people adjust their state of mind
  *A= Action
  *B=Belief
  *C=Consequential feeling   
     We usually think that actions are the only causative agents behind our feelings. For example, if i lost my job, this would lead to a feeling of low-esteem: I am not good enough and I won't ever be successful in my life. This shows the importance of 'B' in the formula. If I believe in myself, I will have confidence, and I can change my consequential feelings 'C' in a positive direction:This is a new challenge, a given opportunity to leran and to further improve myself and reveal my hidden talents and gifts.
         Do not accept failure, it is only up to you to turn your failure into success by always trying one more time. It is not what happens that matters, but how you choose to respond it. learn from your experience and have total belief in your abilities and potential.


         To create change in our lives, we have to start wrking on our sense of self-worth, inner spirituality and sefl-awareness. Allah teaches us this in the Qur'an:
13:11
For each one are successive [angels] before and behind him who protect him by the decree of Allah . Indeed, Allah will not change the condition of a people until they change what is in themselves. And when Allah intends for a people ill, there is no repelling it. And there is not for them besides Him any patron.
- Surah Ra'd 13:11

4) LIVE IN THE MOMENT

    Someone rightly said :
   Past is history
   Tomorrow is Mystery
   Today is a gift, Thats why its called a PRESENT.
         We cannot change the past; memories may only serve us as guides, warnings or lessons for the future. regretting events long past and dwelling on tragic incidents will cripple us and compromise our safety.

           By the same token, we cannot control the future. However confident you are, whatever resources you have, you can never predict the next moment. We do not even own a single breath, so why waste the time and energy worrying?


French verses by Victor Hugo:
We are  born wishing for death
We grow up regretting the loss of childhood where the heart is as pure as gold.
We grow old regretting the loss of our happy , healthy youth
And we die regretting growing old, and life itself.


Enjoy the moment for each has its own taste and its own beauty.

5) APPLY DETACHMENT

                 Detachment simply means that you enjoy your blessings and belongings, appreciate all the gifts constantly appearing in your ife but do not get too attached to them.
                 Once the caliph Haroon Rasheed asked  a wise man for advice. The man looked at the glass of water in the caliph's hand and said, "If you are denied this sip of water, will you give away your entire kingdom to have it?"
The caliph nodded.
The wise man continued, "And if after drinkig it, it was withheld inside your body, would you give your entire kingdom to get it out?"
Again the caliph answered in the affirmative.
The wise man concluded, "So what is the value of a kingdom that is not worth a sip of water or even a drop of urine."
     
            The glorious Quran teaches us the meaning of detachment in many verses:
    The most common attachment in ones's life is to WEALTH.Having money is a great bliss from Allah, and working hard to get money is an absolutely normal part of ur life. whats not normal is to let this money control us.  Allah says in the Qur'an:
وَلَا تَمُدَّنَّ عَيۡنَيۡكَ إِلَىٰ مَا مَتَّعۡنَا بِهِۦۤ أَزۡوَٲجً۬ا مِّنۡہُمۡ زَهۡرَةَ ٱلۡحَيَوٰةِ ٱلدُّنۡيَا لِنَفۡتِنَہُمۡ فِيهِ‌ۚ وَرِزۡقُ رَبِّكَ خَيۡرٌ۬ وَأَبۡقَىٰ

And strain not thine eyes toward that which We cause some wedded pairs among them to enjoy, the flower of the life of the world, that We may try them thereby. The provision of thy Lord is better and more lasting.
-Surah Taha (20:131)
   
       Another attachment is the attachment to our own LOOKS, the belief that this physical body is what you are all about.  The Qur'an teaches us that this body is only a temporary packaging, the most important of a person is one's soul.

6) LOVE

     Love is the only feeling that can bring peace back into our lives, the only sentiment that can unite our efforts and combine our hearts, yet we can hardly find it in our present existence.
 
     There are two kinds of love: METAPHORICAL LOVE; which is transient love related to the material world and the bodily life; and
DIVINE LOVE, the love of Allah- this is the real, eternal and infinite love.


Allah says in His Holy Book:


قُلۡ إِن كَانَ ءَابَآؤُكُمۡ وَأَبۡنَآؤُڪُمۡ وَإِخۡوَٲنُكُمۡ وَأَزۡوَٲجُكُمۡ وَعَشِيرَتُكُمۡ وَأَمۡوَٲلٌ ٱقۡتَرَفۡتُمُوهَا وَتِجَـٰرَةٌ۬ تَخۡشَوۡنَ كَسَادَهَا وَمَسَـٰكِنُ تَرۡضَوۡنَهَآ أَحَبَّ إِلَيۡڪُم مِّنَ ٱللَّهِ وَرَسُولِهِۦ وَجِهَادٍ۬ فِى سَبِيلِهِۦ فَتَرَبَّصُواْ حَتَّىٰ يَأۡتِىَ ٱللَّهُ بِأَمۡرِهِۦ‌ۗ وَٱللَّهُ لَا يَہۡدِى ٱلۡقَوۡمَ ٱلۡفَـٰسِقِينَ
Say: If your fathers, and your sons, and your brethren, and your wives, and your tribe, and the wealth ye have acquired, and merchandise for which ye fear that there will be no sale, and dwellings ye desire are dearer to you than Allah and His messenger and striving in His way: then wait till Allah bringeth His command to pass. Allah guideth not wrongdoing folk.
- Surah Toubah 9:24
 

7) KEEP HOPE AND BE OPTIMISTIC

      The degree of hope and optimism one has depends on one's level of faith. Disasters and tragic events only increase a believer's faith and submission to Allah. They feel an inner peace and are thankful even for difficult situations (seeing them as tests of their faith and patience) and supplicate for Allah's help and guidance.


    During the time of Prophet(saws), it was related that a woman once cut her finger with a knife, whereupon she smiled with relief. Her servant was beside her and was astonished at her reaction; the woman told her: "When I visualized the reward for my patience, i forgot my pain."


8) BE RESPONSIBLE 

           Do not blame others for your own mistakes: stop looking for answers outside yourself. Look within you, you will find the right answers. Acknowledge that you are responbsible for what you choose to feel or think and that you are solely responsible for the choices in your life, so you cannot make excuses and blame others for the choices you have made. Develop a positive, self-afirming personality, believe in yourself. Do not be over confident.
Allah says in the Quran:


مَّآ أَصَابَكَ مِنۡ حَسَنَةٍ۬ فَمِنَ ٱللَّهِ‌ۖ وَمَآ أَصَابَكَ مِن سَيِّئَةٍ۬ فَمِن نَّفۡسِكَ‌ۚ وَأَرۡسَلۡنَـٰكَ لِلنَّاسِ رَسُولاً۬‌ۚ وَكَفَىٰ بِٱللَّهِ شَہِيدً۬ا
Whatever of good befalleth thee (O man) it is from Allah, and whatever of ill befalleth thee it is from thyself. We have sent thee (Muhammad) as a messenger unto mankind and Allah is sufficient as Witness.
- Surah Nisa 4:79


9)DEFINE YOUR OBJECTIVES


        Each and every person has to have a purpose for his or her life: an objective that prevents one's actions from being barren and meaningless. If you do not give  it true meaning, life is a total waste.
Allah says in the Quran:
وَمَا خَلَقۡتُ ٱلۡجِنَّ وَٱلۡإِنسَ إِلَّا لِيَعۡبُدُونِ
I created the jinn and humankind only that they might worship Me.
-(Surah Dhariat 51:56)

                Worshipping does not only mean praying and fasting, every action in a true muslim's life is considered an act of worship.  It  is right intention and sincerity that turn a mere physical or social ritual into an act of worship and obedience to Allah.


10)BE POWERFUL

       When we think of someone powerful, we think imagine them to be dominant and controlling, but this is not true power. our power lies deep within our souls; it is reflected in each action, movement and decision. it radiates love, compassion and understanding; it illuminates our surroundings and our world. Being powerful means overcoming our fears and self-doubts, exploring new challenges and fulfilling our duties and responsibilities.


TO BOOST SELF- ESTEEM, TRY THE FOLLOWING STEPS:
1) Believe in your self worth and potential
2)Assess your limitations and work with them
3)Visualize your personal success
4)Work to achieve your visualized goal, and remember that your aptitude and performance are ditrectly related to your levels of confidence.


11)FORGIVE AND FORGET

      When we ar hurt, insulted or faced with injustice, we have two options to deal with our feelings:either to forgive and forget or to hate, harbor grudge and live to seek revenge.


      Lots of people refuse to forgive, thinking it a sign of weakness: they think that by forgiving they are surrendering to their offenders.On the contrary, by forgiving you cease to be the victim of hatred and anger and you triumph over your own evil. Now comes the most important question:
Allah swt says:
وَلَمَن صَبَرَ وَغَفَرَ إِنَّ ذَٲلِكَ لَمِنۡ عَزۡمِ ٱلۡأُمُورِ
And verily whoso is patient and forgiveth - lo! that, verily, is (of) the stedfast heart of things. 
-Surah Shoora 42:43


Some helpful hints : 
a) Allow yourself enough time to heal, let yourself fully express your feelings; do not just deny the pain and turn your back on it, expecting it to disappear on its own.
b)Perform regular breathing exercises:the easiest one is simply to observe your breathing: do not try to control it or force it: just watch it and relax.You can also make use of meditation techniques to help you relax.
c)Practice thinking that this life is just a transient path and those little events make up the bridge on which we can cross to the next world. so, take what is absolutely necessary for you to cross it and leave what is not.
d)Honor the Divine wisdom behind every event. Live in harmony with Allah's Will, rather than fighting it. Focus on your blessings, be grateful for them and release yourself from earthly bonding and material attachments.
e)Keep your mind engaged with more important things.
f)Fear the punishment of Allah upon those whose hearts are filled with anger, hatred and resentment.
g)CONSIDER EACHEVENT A LESSON AND EVERY PERSON A TEACHER: regardless of how you choose to judge teir actions, it is useless to hate them or blame them for the situation you are in.
h)Hatred is a heavy burden to carry.
i)LOOK FOR THE GOOD IN EVERYONE.
j) Know that Allah does not love anger, hatred or revenge.
h)Know that people who are spreading injustce and animosity usually ignore the effect of their acts on others, they just act selfishly.


12)DO NOT GET ANGRY    

   Anger, like stress and worry, intoxicates your body; it pulls you into a never-ending vicious cycle of unhappiness and rage, which in turn depletes your energy and leave syou devastated and depressed. It is important to realise that anger does not resolve anything.
**~~A man came to the Prophet(saws) and asked him for advice : the Prophet(saws) replied, repeating several times: "DO  NOT GET ANGRY"~~**


13)DO NOT WORRY 

         Imam Dhahabi wrote: "Whoever worries too much sickens his body."  The solution for worry and stress is taught to us repeatedly in the Qur'an and the Sunnah. Allah teaches us that fearing nothing and no one but Allah and detaching oneself from materialistic, wordlt thoughts will free your mind by allowing you to remember that nothing in this life can last forever, that what may seem to you today to be an unsolvable problem will soon pass and fade away.
  Allah says in the Qur'an:

ٱعۡلَمُوٓاْ أَنَّمَا ٱلۡحَيَوٰةُ ٱلدُّنۡيَا لَعِبٌ۬ وَلَهۡوٌ۬ وَزِينَةٌ۬ وَتَفَاخُرُۢ بَيۡنَكُمۡ وَتَكَاثُرٌ۬ فِى ٱلۡأَمۡوَٲلِ وَٱلۡأَوۡلَـٰدِ‌ۖ كَمَثَلِ غَيۡثٍ أَعۡجَبَ ٱلۡكُفَّارَ نَبَاتُهُ ۥ ثُمَّ يَہِيجُ فَتَرَٮٰهُ مُصۡفَرًّ۬ا ثُمَّ يَكُونُ حُطَـٰمً۬ا‌ۖ وَفِى ٱلۡأَخِرَةِ عَذَابٌ۬ شَدِيدٌ۬ وَمَغۡفِرَةٌ۬ مِّنَ ٱللَّهِ وَرِضۡوَٲنٌ۬‌ۚ وَمَا ٱلۡحَيَوٰةُ ٱلدُّنۡيَآ إِلَّا مَتَـٰعُ ٱلۡغُرُورِ 
  Know that the life of the world is only play, and idle talk, and pageantry, and boasting among you, and rivalry in respect of wealth and children; as the likeness of vegetation after rain, whereof the growth is pleasing to the husbandman, but afterward it drieth up and thou seest it turning yellow, then it becometh straw. And in the Hereafter there is grievous punishment, and (also) forgiveness from Allah and His good pleasure, whereas the life of the world is but matter of illusion.
- Surah Hadeed 57:20

                Ibn al-Qayyim recommended, "Whenever sadness and grief intensify on someone, let him repeat often:There is neither power nor strength except from Allah (Laa hawla wa la quwwata illa billa) "
 He saws said:**Whenever sadness or grief strkes someone, he should say: "O ALLAH! I am your servant,the son of your servants. My forelock is in your grasp.Your decision about me will certainly come to pass. Your judgement on me is certainly just. I ask you by every Name that is Yours and by which You call Yourself, whether you revealed it inyour book, taught it to someone of Your creation or kept it in the knowledge of the unseen that You have. Make the Qur'an the spring of my heart, the light of my chest, the eliminator of my sadness and the end of my grief."
Then Allah will remove his sadness anddepression and will replace them with joy.**
 In Surah 70(Ma'arij) of the qur'an,  Allah swt describes human beings in this way:
إِنَّ ٱلۡإِنسَـٰنَ خُلِقَ هَلُوعًا (١٩) إِذَا مَسَّهُ ٱلشَّرُّ جَزُوعً۬ا (٢٠) وَإِذَا مَسَّهُ ٱلۡخَيۡرُ مَنُوعًا (٢١
 Lo! man was created anxious, (19) Fretful when evil befalleth him (20) And, when good befalleth him, grudging; (21) 
    Allah makes an exception; in the same surah He gives us a Divine prescrition for the treatment of impatience, anxiety and worries:
PRAYERS:
 إِلَّا ٱلۡمُصَلِّينَ (٢٢) ٱلَّذِينَ هُمۡ عَلَىٰ صَلَاتِہِمۡ دَآٮِٕمُونَ (٢٣
Save worshippers. (22) Who are constant at their worship (23)
CHARITY:
 وَٱلَّذِينَ فِىٓ أَمۡوَٲلِهِمۡ حَقٌّ۬ مَّعۡلُومٌ۬ (٢٤) لِّلسَّآٮِٕلِ وَٱلۡمَحۡرُومِ (٢٥)
And in whose wealth there is a right acknowledged (24) For the beggar and the destitute; (25)
BELIEF IN THE HEREAFTER:
 وَٱلَّذِينَ يُصَدِّقُونَ بِيَوۡمِ ٱلدِّينِ ( ٢٦
And those who believe in the Day of Judgment, (26)
FEAR FROM AND FAITH IN ALLAH :
 وَٱلَّذِينَ هُم مِّنۡ عَذَابِ رَبِّہِم مُّشۡفِقُونَ (٢٧) إِنَّ عَذَابَ رَبِّہِمۡ غَيۡرُ مَأۡمُونٍ۬ (٢٨)
And those who are fearful of their Lord's doom - (27) Lo! the doom of their Lord is that before which none can feel secure - (28)
CHASTITY: 
وَٱلَّذِينَ هُمۡ لِفُرُوجِهِمۡ حَـٰفِظُونَ (٢٩) إِلَّا عَلَىٰٓ أَزۡوَٲجِهِمۡ أَوۡ مَا مَلَكَتۡ أَيۡمَـٰنُہُمۡ فَإِنَّہُمۡ غَيۡرُ مَلُومِينَ (٣٠) فَمَنِ ٱبۡتَغَىٰ وَرَآءَ ذَٲلِكَ فَأُوْلَـٰٓٮِٕكَ هُمُ ٱلۡعَادُونَ (٣١)
And those who preserve their chastity (29) Save with their wives and those whom their right hands possess, for thus they are not blameworthy; (30) But whoso seeketh more than that, those are they who are transgressors; (31)
GOODMANNERS AND HONESTY:
 وَٱلَّذِينَ هُمۡ لِأَمَـٰنَـٰتِہِمۡ وَعَهۡدِهِمۡ رَٲعُونَ (٣٢) وَٱلَّذِينَ هُم بِشَہَـٰدَٲتِہِمۡ قَآٮِٕمُونَ (٣٣)
And those who keep their pledges and their covenant, (32) And those who stand by their testimony (33)
STRONG RELIGIOUS BELIEFS :
 إِلَّا ٱلۡمُصَلِّينَ (٢٢
 And those who strictly guard their prayers.
          These are indeed the seven characteristics that are guaranteed to bring successs in this life and in the hereafter.

14)SURRENDER TO ALLAH'S WILL:

      Sometimes the little inconveniences and obstacles are Allah's lessons to give us strength and wisdom. Calamities and afflictions are part of our big life test; contained within them are valuable guidance and wisdom. Sickness and loss are favors from Allah that wipe away our sins, so that we revert to Him with a pure, loving heart. Sometimes, during our sorrows and frustrations, we mistakenly think that our prayers are not answered; we assume that we have nothing. No, think again: we have it all. 
Allah says in the Qur'an:
قُلۡ مَنۢ بِيَدِهِۦ مَلَكُوتُ ڪُلِّ شَىۡءٍ۬ وَهُوَ يُجِيرُ وَلَا يُجَارُ عَلَيۡهِ إِن كُنتُمۡ تَعۡلَمُونَ (٨٨
Say: In Whose hand is the dominion over all things and He protecteth, while against Him there is no protection, if ye have knowledge? 
-Surah Muminoon 23:88

          Ghazali the elder narrated this story of a man who went on a journey carrying only a loaf of bread. He was afraid to eat it and leave no food reserve for the rest of his voyage. He kept telling himself, “If I eat it, I will die.”
           Allah entrusted an angel to him saying, “If he eats it, give him more provision.”  The man never ate his loaf; it lay there before him at the time of his death.
          This man planned his journey and thought out his means, but forgot to rely upon Allah. However endowed with knowledge and experience , we cannot predict our fate. A stage comes in life when all that is humanly possible has been done, yet the results cannot be anticipated. At that time, you leave everything to Allah and make your will conform to the Divine will. 
Allah only knows what the final outcome is to be, and as He(SWT) says in the Qura’an:

 وَعَسَىٰٓ أَن تَكۡرَهُواْ شَيۡـًٔ۬ا وَهُوَ خَيۡرٌ۬ لَّڪُمۡ‌ۖ وَعَسَىٰٓ أَن تُحِبُّواْ شَيۡـًٔ۬ا وَهُوَ شَرٌّ۬ لَّكُمۡ‌ۗ وَٱللَّهُ يَعۡلَمُ وَأَنتُمۡ لَا تَعۡلَمُونَ (٢١٦) 
 .... but it may happen that ye hate a thing which is good for you, and it may happen that ye love a thing which is bad for you. Allah knoweth, ye know not. 
- Surah Baqarah 2:216 

 
 15)BE FLEXIBLE

             Prophet(SAWS) said:** The likeness of the believer is as a stalk of corn which the wind does not cease to blow down; even so trials do not cease to fall upon the believer. The likeness of a hypocrite is as a cypress tree which does not bend or shake unless it is felled.**


               There is a great lesson to be learnt from the story of Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple Computer and of Pixar Animation Studios, as he told it during a speech he delivered at Stanford University. Jobs started his career in his parent’s garage and proceeded his way up to be, in ten years, the leader of Apple, a $2billion company with thousands of employees. Then, against all odds, the board of directors decided to fire him. I can imagine someone in his place, who got fired from a company that he started, to be devastated, depressed and overwhelmed. This was not the case: Jobs decided to wotk his way up again, to turn his calamity into challenge, into an opportunity for growth and creativity. He started two new companies, NeXT and Pixar, the world’s most successful animation studio which created the famous computer-animated feature film, toy story. It was only a matter of time before Apple bought NeXT and Jobs returned to Apple.
           This is a marvelous example of flexibility, a great way to perceive a devastating situation as a lesson and an occasion for growth and progress.


16) REMEMBER  DEATH  

           How is remembering death going to make anyone happier? Well, it will. This is truly not an invitation  for  depression and  grief, nor is it gloomy, bleak advice favoring pessimism and passiveness. It is just a reminder of an absolute fact, a fact that we all tend to forget while immersed in this transient, falsely embellished world. We all are one breath away from death. We usually do not remember that and we do not like to be reminded, either.  Nevertheless,  it is an inescapable fact. Allah(swt) says:  

قُلۡ إِنَّ ٱلۡمَوۡتَ ٱلَّذِى تَفِرُّونَ مِنۡهُ فَإِنَّهُ ۥ مُلَـٰقِيڪُمۡ‌ۖ ثُمَّ تُرَدُّونَ إِلَىٰ عَـٰلِمِ ٱلۡغَيۡبِ وَٱلشَّهَـٰدَةِ فَيُنَبِّئُكُم بِمَا كُنتُمۡ تَعۡمَلُونَ (٨) 
Say (unto them, O Muhammad): Lo! the death from which ye shrink will surely meet you, and afterward ye will be returned unto the Knower of the Invisible and the Visible, and He will tell you what ye used to do.
  -Surah Jumuah 62:8


            Ghazali the elder divided people into three classes:
a)      *Those who are addicted to the world
b)      *Those who are repentant and
    *Those who are surrendered to Allah.
           The people who are addicted to the world do not remember death, and do not like to. Those who are repentant, on the other hand, remember death and fear it. They do not like death, as they fear that they will die before they repent from  their sins and purify their souls from corrupt deeds. He is just not prepared for death. The third type of people are those who are dedicated to Allah. The ones who always remember death because they would like to meet with the Beloved. Such a person is waiting to live in the neighborhood of Allah. Remembering death keeps them unattached to false worldly desires and urges them to work and perform good deeds in order to prepare for the next eternal world. That is how remembering death helps you in your journey towards detachment.
             
            Prophet(saws) said: ** Remember death often, the terminator of pleasures.**                                    

** Ibn ‘Umar said: "I, along with ten other companions, was near the Messenger of Allah(saws). Then a man from the Ansar asked him, ‘O Prophet of Allah! Who are the wisest and most honored of people?’ the Prophet(saws) answered, ‘Those who remember death most and prepare most for it. They pass away with honor in this world and the next.’”**
               Remembering death is not about denying the joy of living. On the contrary, it is about enjoying the freedom of flowing with life, knowing that it is a temporary residence. 

** Ibn ‘Umar related that the Prophet(saws)  took hold of his shoulders and said: “Be in the world as if you are a stranger or a traveler.” **
** Ibn ‘Umar used to say: “When you arrive at the evening do not expect to see the morning and when you arrive at the morning do not expect to see the evening. During health, prepare for illness and while you are alive prepare for death.”**

          
 17) BE CONTENT AND SATISFIED      

             Trying to get every single factor in your life under your control is futile, as life constantly challenges us with new tests. 
  Allah says in the Qur’an:

أَحَسِبَ ٱلنَّاسُ أَن يُتۡرَكُوٓاْ أَن يَقُولُوٓاْ ءَامَنَّا وَهُمۡ لَا يُفۡتَنُونَ
Do men imagine that they will be left (at ease) because they say, We believe, and will not be tested with affliction? 
-Surah Ankaboot 29:2 
 
             That is the law of existence and it is in your own interest to surrender to it. Appreciate your divine blessings, focus  on your gifts and blessings, adapt your needs to your earnings possessions, and stop questioning the Divine arrangement of your life. Prophet Muhammad (saws) said: ** Do not impeach Allah about something He pre-ordained for you.**

            You have to look within your heart to find inner peace and contentment. Prophet Muhammad(saws) said: ** If one wakes up in the morning in the full security of his heart and his body free from harm, and having a day’s provision, then it is as if the world, all of it, is driven to him.**

               We should look at afflictions as merely a test for our patience, acceptance and faith; they rid us of sins, strengthen our resolve and purify our souls.
             Prophet(saws) said:** The bigger the test is, the greater will be the reward for it. When Allah loves people, He tests them. If they accept the affliction cheerfully, then they will achieve contentment or Allah’s pleasure; and those who become enraged(or evade the affliction) will only reap Allah’s rage.**             
             A wise man once said: “On the first day that a calamity strikes, the wise person behaves just like the ignorant person behaves days later.”         
       
             
18)BE PATIENT AND STEADFAST            

   We are faced with lessons in patience every day of our lives. Spiritual enlightenment and contentment are hard tasks and long-term goals that are difficult to achieve. Since this is not an easy journey, patience is required at each step along the way. Patience is the driving power that will keep you going.

              **Suhayb reported that the Prophet(saws) said: “The believer’s affair is amazing: it is all for good, and that is not the case of anyone other than a believer. If good times come to him, he is thankful and thus it is good for him, and if bad times befall him, he is patient, and thus it is also good for him.”**

       ‘Umar ibn al Khattab once wrote to Abu moosa Ash’ari saying: “Observe patience. Know that patience is of two kinds; one is better than the other. It is good to have patience in disasters, but it is even better to keep yourself away from unlawful things. And know that patience is the gist of faith and this is because the fear of Allah is the best religious act and this is gained by patience.” 
      According to Ghazali the elder, there are three kinds of patience:
1)      Patience over things that we cannot control, like accidents and natural disasters, physical pain and diseases. The practice of this type of patience leads to the contentment of the soul.
2)      Patience at the inclination of evil and this includes self-control, forbearance by containing one’s anger and the acceptance of one’s situation.
3)      Patience in experiencing pleasure and happiness. When people feel very comfortable enjoying physical health, safety, property, wealth and the admiration of others; they can throw themselves into these worldly comforts and possessions without control and fail to remember either the source of their blessings or the ultimate purpose of their creation.


19) TIME FOR YOURSELF        

                When you get overwhelmed by too many things to do, when you are running out of time and your energy seems to be leaking out of me,  remember “the mayonnaise jar and the coffee.”
  “A professor stood before his Philosophy class and picked up a very large and empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with golf balls. He then asked the students if the jar was full. They agreed that it was. The professor then picked up a box of pebbles and then poured them into the jar. He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles rolled into the open areas between the golf balls. He then asked the students again if the jar was full. They agreed it was. The professor next picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. Of course the sand filled up everything else. He asked once more if the jar was full. The students responded with a unanimous, ‘Yes!’ The professor then poured the content of two cups of coffee into the jar; this effectively filled up the empty space between the sand. The students laughed.
‘Now,’ said the professor, as the laughter subsided, ‘I want you to recognize that this jar represents your life, the golf balls are the important things- God, family, your children, you health and your close friends and relatives- things that if everything else was lost and only they remained, your life would still be worthwhile. The pebbles are the other things that matter like you job, your house and your car; the sand is everything else- the small stuff.’
‘If you put the sand into the jar first,’ he continued, ‘there will be no room for the pebbles or the golf balls. The same goes for life: if you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff, you will never have room for the things that are important to you. Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness: say your prayers, play with your children, and take time to get medical check-ups, take your partner out to dinner. There will always be time to clean the house and fix the disposal. Take care of the golf balls first, the things that really matter. Set your priorities. The rest is just sand.’
One of the students raised her hand and inquired what the coffee represented.
The professor smiled, ‘I’m glad you asked. It just goes to show you than no matter how full your life may seem, there is always room for a cup of coffee with a friend.’ "

 ** It was reported that Salman once said to Abu Darda’: “Allah has a right over you, your own self has a right over you and your partner has a right over you; so give everyone his due right.” When the Prophet(SAW) was informed of what he had said, he replied, “Salman has spoken the truth.” **


20) SEEK ALLAH’S FORGIVENESS  

       Seeking Allah’s forgiveness brings happiness, peace of mind and well-being, Allah(SWT) says in His Book:

وَأَنِ ٱسۡتَغۡفِرُواْ رَبَّكُمۡ ثُمَّ تُوبُوٓاْ إِلَيۡهِ يُمَتِّعۡكُم مَّتَـٰعًا حَسَنًا إِلَىٰٓ أَجَلٍ۬ مُّسَمًّ۬ى وَيُؤۡتِ كُلَّ ذِى فَضۡلٍ۬ فَضۡلَهُ
And (bidding you): Ask pardon of your Lord and turn to Him repentant. He will cause you to enjoy a fair estate until a time appointed. He giveth His bounty unto every bountiful one.
- Surah Hud 11:3 
 
** Prophet (SAW)  said:  By Allah, I seek Allah’s forgiveness and repent to Him (saying, “Astaghfir Allah wa atoobu ilayhi) more than seventy times each day **

A man once came to Imam Hassan Basri, complaining that the amount of rainfall was insufficient; the Imam told him, “Ask Allah’s forgiveness.” Another man came complaining from poverty; the Imam said once again, “Ask Allah’s forgiveness.” A third man complained to the Imam of infertility; the advice was the same, “Ask Allah’s forgiveness.” Eventually, a fourth man came to complain that his garden did not yield fine produce, and for the fourth time the Imam suggested, “Ask Allah’s forgiveness.” A amn who had been sitting next to the Imam asked in surprise, “O Imam, how can you prescribe the same solution for these four different cases?” The Imam replied, “I remembered the verse in Allah’s Book that says:

فَقُلۡتُ ٱسۡتَغۡفِرُواْ رَبَّكُمۡ إِنَّهُ ۥ كَانَ غَفَّارً۬ا (١٠) يُرۡسِلِ ٱلسَّمَآءَ عَلَيۡكُم مِّدۡرَارً۬ا (١١) وَيُمۡدِدۡكُم بِأَمۡوَٲلٍ۬ وَبَنِينَ وَيَجۡعَل لَّكُمۡ جَنَّـٰتٍ۬ وَيَجۡعَل لَّكُمۡ أَنۡہَـٰرً۬ا (١٢)
And I have said: Seek pardon of your Lord. Lo! He was ever Forgiving. (10) He will let loose the sky for you in plenteous rain, (11) And will help you with wealth and sons, and will assign unto you Gardens and will assign unto you rivers. (12)  
- Surah Nuh 71:10-12 

Repentance is a higherstep in seeking Allah’s forgiveness. It is a return to Allah after committing a sin; it is a beginning of a new life, a new hope. Accordind to Ghazali, repentance is the key that guides us to the Straight Path and it is the instrument that will purify our souls, to bring us closer to Allah.                                                        

           
           ** The Prophet (SAW)once told his companions: << A man went to a vst field with a cmel loaded with food and fuel. He fell asleep, and when he awoke, he did not find his camel. He began to search for it, running to and fro, and after the sun and his hunger had exhausted him, he said, "I will go to my former place to sleep such a sleep that it may cause my death." Then, he placed his head upon his hands and slept there waiting his death. When he woke, he found his camel standing before him with the food and water. His joy then knew no bounds. Allah becomes more pleased with the repentance of  a believer than this man's joy.>> **


          It is necessary for everyone to return to Allah, this is the way for our salvation.
      

1 comment:

  1. Subhanallah... awesome tips to be happy through the guidance of Islam

    ReplyDelete