The Lifeline of Islam
When a person is drowning and struggling to survive, he will do anything to save his life. If he is able to catch hold of a rope nearby through which he can pull himself out of the water, he will desperately cling onto it and view it as his lifeline. In this world, when a believer is faced with the turbulent tides of fitnah that threaten to drown him in sins and destroy his deen, then he should ask himself, “What is the lifeline of Islam that I should firmly latch onto?”
The lifeline of Islam is improving one’s relationship with Allah Ta‘ala. This is the solution to all problems, whether related to one’s deen or dunya. When Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) migrated to Madinah Munawwarah, then during the very first jumu’ah khutbah that he delivered, he addressed the people saying, “The one who improves his relationship with Allah Ta‘ala, Allah Ta‘ala will improve his relationship with people.” (Al-Bidaayah 4/528)
Improving one’s relationship with Allah Ta‘ala is the key to acquiring success in this world and the Hereafter. It can be compared to the sun that illuminates everything in the world. When one illuminates his life with the love of Allah Ta‘ala and improves his relationship with his Creator, then Allah Ta‘ala blesses him with His divine support and grants him success in everything. Even his relationship with people is improved and people begin to love him.
However, in order to improve one’s relationship with Allah Ta‘ala, it is imperative for one to uphold three aspects in his life. The first is to be punctual on salaah, the second is to refrain from sins, and the third is to show kindness to the creation, especially one’s family and relatives.
Punctuality on Salaah – Salaah has been described in the Hadith as being the main pillar of one’s deen. Without being punctual on one’s salaah, one will never be able to improve one’s relationship with Allah Ta‘ala and gain His divine love and mercy. It was the burning desire of Hazrat Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) that the males of his Ummah perform their fardh salaah with jamaat in the musjid.
Hazrat Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) was so passionate about performing salaah with jamaat in the musjid that even in his extreme illness prior to his demise, when he was unable to walk unassisted, he took support on the shoulders of two people and went to the musjid for salaah. In regard to those men who were performing their salaah at home, Hazrat Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) said, “Had it not been for the women and children in the homes, I would have performed the Esha Salaah and thereafter commanded a group of youth to set alight the homes of those people who perform their fardh salaah in their homes without any valid excuse.” (Musnad Ahmed #8796 and Saheeh Muslim #651)
In the Hadith of Hazrat Abdullah bin Mas’ood (radhiyallahu ‘anhu), it is mentioned that the one who wishes to meet Allah on the Day of Qiyaamah as a Muslim should guard his five daily salaah through performing them in the musjid. (Sunan Nasai #849)
Refraining from Sins – In order for one to improve his relationship with Allah Ta‘ala, it is incumbent upon him to refrain from sins and safeguard himself from fitnahs. The great Muhaddith, Allaamah Yusuf Binnowri (rahimahullah), has mentioned, “In every age and era, fitnahs manifested in different forms. However, in principal, there are two types of fitnahs that harm one’s deen; fitnahs in amal (actions) and fitnahs in ilm (knowledge).”
Allaamah Binnowri (rahimahullah) thereafter explained that in regard to fitnahs in amal, then this takes place when people become involved in sins such as illicit relationships, zina, consuming alcohol and drugs, interest, bribery, shamelessness, nudity, dancing, singing and music, then these sins lead to one getting involved in oppression, lying, dishonesty in dealings, etc. The ill-effects of these sins eventually impact on one’s salaah, fasting, zakaat, haj and all other righteous actions. The more one indulges in these sins and immerses himself in them, the weaker one’s deen becomes, and one will gradually be deprived of carrying out good actions.
With regard to the fitnah of ilm (knowledge), then this comes about through one acquiring his deen from unreliable and un-Islamic sources (e.g. TV, Youtube, Facebook, etc.). Through one acquiring his deen from these corrupt sources, his heart and mind will be shaped accordingly, causing him to have the wrong understanding and outlook of deen. Hence, the actions that he will carry out thereafter will conform to the mindset that he has acquired from these sources. (Dowr Haazir ke Fitne pg. 21-22)
Showing Kindness to the Creation – In order for one to improve his relationship with Allah Ta‘ala, it is vital for him to show kindness to the servants of Allah and fulfill their rights. Showing kindness to the servants of Allah is an effective means to draw the mercy of Allah Ta‘ala. If one ill-treats the servants of Allah Ta‘ala, he can never acquire the love and mercy of Allah Ta‘ala.
Hazrat Moulana Ilyaas (rahimahullah) mentioned that on the Day of Qiyaamah, there will be two actions that will be most pleasing to Allah due to which people will gain forgiveness. The first is showing respect to everything that relates to deen e.g. the Qur’aan Majeed, the azaan, the musjid, the Mu’azzin, the Ulamaa, etc. The second is showing kindness to the creation. These two actions are most beloved to Allah Ta‘ala and will cause people to gain entry into Paradise.
Allah Ta‘ala has given one’s family and relatives a greater right compared to the general Muslims. Hence, one has a greater obligation to treat his relatives kindly and fulfill their rights. Furthermore, treating one’s relatives kindly is a means of earning immense barakah in one’s life. Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) mentioned, “The one who wishes that his sustenance be increased and that his life be lengthened should maintain family ties.” (Saheeh Bukhaari #5986)
At this crucial time, when most people avoid meeting one another on account of the virus, the rights of one’s family are also being compromised. There is no one to take care of the aged or family members that are ill. The lamentable outcome is that people fall into depression and lose hope, whereas the religion of Islam offers hope and mercy to one and all in every condition.
Therefore, if one wishes to acquire the special mercy of Allah Ta‘ala in his life, then the secret is for him to perform all his salaah in the musjid with jamaat, refrain from all sins and show kindness to the creation and fulfill their rights.