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That path to happiness

Imaam Ibnul-Qaiyym relates to us:
One of the scholars once said: I pondered over what wise men strive for, and found that their endeavor is all for the same target, even if their ways of seeking it are different. I found them all striving to demolish worry and grief from their lives; one by eating and drinking, one by trade and earning a living, one by marriage, one by listening to songs and delightful sounds, and one by entertainment and playing.

So I said: this endeavor is the endeavor of wise men, but not all the ways (taken by them) lead to it. Rather, most of them probably lead to the exact opposite of their endeavor. I didn't find any of these paths leading to the (intended) goal except the path of turning to Allaah, caring about Him, and preferring His pleasure over everything else. If the one who takes this path misses his share of this life, he has still triumphed by attaining the highest share with which their is no loss (i.e. the Hereafter); whoever attains it has attained everything, and whoever loses it has lost everything. And if he, on the other hand, also gets his share in this life, he will attain it in the most comfortable way.

The servant, thus, has no better path to follow, from the available paths, (other than the path of Allaah) that can take him to the (intended) pleasure, delight, and happiness. And with Allaah is success.*

* Ad-Daa' wad-Dawaa', p. 210, published by Dar Ibn al-Jawzee in Cairo.

If the kings only knew...

It is reported that Ibraaheem ibn Ad-ham (one of the righteous predecessors) once said:
If the kings, and the sons of the kings, only knew what we are in of joy and comfort, they would fight us over it with their swords to attain what we possess of the taste of life and the scarcity of discomfort.1
It is, indeed, sad when we consider this saying, then we look at the attitude of some Muslims today. Due to their lack of understanding of the Deen, they crave for the disbelievers' way of life, behavior, clothing, culture, and even their lousy movie and music "stars".

We should understand the statement of Ibraaheem ibn Ad-ham in the context of tasting the sweetness of faith. No doubt the stronger the faith of the servant, Allaah may test him with harder trials to test him and increase his reward. But the "scarcity of discomfort" is evidenced by the true believer's patience and gratitude for Allah's decrees.

Our comfort, our honor, and our success is only in understanding our Deen and applying it in our lives, in general, and in detail. It is reported from 'Umar ibn al-Khattaab that he said:
We were the most dishonored nation until Allaah honored us with Islaam. So whenever we try to seek honor through anything other than what Allaah honored us with (i.e. anything other than Islaam), then Allaah will humiliate us.2
1) Reported by Abu Nu'aym in Hilyatul Awliyaa' (7/370)
2) Saheeh; reported by al-Haakim (207); see Saheeh at-Targheeb (2893)
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