Chapter 3 Patience and Perseverance

Allah, the Exalted, says:

“O you who believe! Endure and be more patient..”. (3:200)

“And certainly, We shall test you with something of fear, hunger, loss of wealth, lives and fruits, but give glad tidings to As-Sabirun (the patient)”.  (2:155)

“Only those who are patient shall receive their reward in full, without reckoning.” (39:10)

“And verily, whosoever shows patience and forgives, that would truly be from the things recommended by Allah.” (42:43)

“Seek help in patience and As-Salat (the prayer). Truly, Allah is with As-Sabirun (the patient).” (2:153)

“And surely, We shall try you till We test those who strive hard (for the Cause of Allah) and As-Sabirun (the patient)” (47:31)

There are numerous Verses of the Noble Qur’an inculcating patience and extolling it.

25. Abu Malik Al-Harith bin Asim Al-Ash`ar (May Allah be pleased with him) reported that: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said: “Wudu’ is half of Salah; the utterance of  (Al-hamdu lillah – all praise belongs to Allah) fills the Scales of good actions; the utterance of (Subhan Allah wa Al-hamdu lillah) (Allah is far removed from every imperfection and all praise belongs to Allah) fills the space between the heavens and the earth, and Salat (prayer) is light; and charity is the proof of Faith; and endurance is light, and the Qur’an is a plea in your favour or against you. Every person departs; he either ransoms it or puts it into perdition”.
[Muslim].

Commentary:
1. Piety in all forms is meritorious. And Faith means Faith in its perfect form. Some people are of the opinion that here Faith means Salat. Purification is essential for Salat and this is the reason it is regarded as half of Salat.

2. Excellence of the remembrance of Allah.

3. Inducement for concentration on Salat because it is a light which provides guidance to a Muslim at every step and prevents him from obscenity and unlawful actions.

4. Sadaqah signifies a Muslim’s sincerity and devotion.

5. The praiseworthiness of patience. It is a strong weapon of a Muslim which provides him with steadfastness.

6. The Qur’an is a means of salvation as well as destruction for a Muslim. If one acts upon its orders, it becomes a means of his salvation; if he shuns them, it ruins him.

7. One should not leave oneself idle but keep it busy – busy in some noble work, otherwise it would tend to evil which will eventually ruin him.

8. One should spend this transitory earthly life in the obedience of Allah.

26. Abu Sa’id Al-Khudri (May Allah be pleased with him) reported that: Certain people of the Ansar asked the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) and he gave them; then they again asked him and he gave them until all what he possessed was exhausted. Then the Prophet (PBUH) said, “Whatever wealth I have, I will not withhold from you. Whosoever would be chaste and modest; Allah will keep him chaste and modest and whosoever would seek self-sufficiency, Allah will make him self-sufficient; and whosoever would be patient, Allah will give him patience, and no one is granted a gift better and more comprehensive than patience”.
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

Commentary:  Besides describing generosity, kindness, munificence and nobility of the Prophet (PBUH), he has been ordained by Allah to adopt patience, contentment and self-respect and to avoid anyone’s favour.

27. Abu Yahya Suhaib bin Sinan (May Allah be pleased with him) reported that: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “How wonderful is the case of a believer; there is good for him in everything and this applies only to a believer. If prosperity attends him, he expresses gratitude to Allah and that is good for him; and if adversity befalls him, he endures it patiently and that is better for him”.
[Muslim].

Commentary:  A Muslim is required to behave in poverty and prosperity, affluence and hardship, in the manner stated in this Hadith. It means that to forget Allah in prosperity, rather than being thankful to Him for His Favour is defiance of His Orders. Similarly, it is unbecoming of a Muslim that in troubles and turmoil, rather being patient, he tends to weeping and crying, grousing and grieving against the Will of Allah.

28. Anas (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: When the last illness of Messenger of Allah (PBUH) made him unconscious, Fatimah (May Allah be pleased with her) exclaimed: “Ah, the distress of my dear father.” He (PBUH) said, “There will be no distress for your father after today”. When he died she said: “My father, Allah has called you back and you have responded to His Call. O father! Garden of Firdaus is your abode. O father! We announce to Jibril your death.” When he was buried, she said: “Are you satisfied now that you put earth over (the grave of) Messenger of Allah (PBUH)?”
[Al-Bukhari]

Commentary:  This Hadith shows that it is permissible to express the trouble and restlessness which one feels at the time of death. Similarly, expression of pain and grief in a natural way in the event of someone’s death is also permissible. To remember the virtues of the deceased is also permitted but it is to be free from wailing and moaning, lamentation and crying, and tearing off clothes, etc. The last words of Fatimah (May Allah be pleased with her) are also a way of expressing grief  and sadness and not a criticism on the burial of the Prophet (PBUH) because such criticism is prohibited by Shari`ah and no one is exempted from it.

29. Usamah bin Zaid (May Allah be pleased with them) narrated: The daughter of the Prophet (PBUH) sent for him as her child was dying, but the Prophet (PBUH) returned the messenger and sent her good wishes saying, “Whatever Allah takes away or gives, belongs to Him, and everything with Him has a limited fixed term (in this world), and so she should be patient and anticipate Allah’s reward.” She again sent for him adjuring him for the sake of Allah to come. The Messenger of Allah, accompanied with Sa`d bin `Ubadah, Mu`adh bin Jabal, Ubayy bin Ka`b, Zaid bin Thabit and some other men went to see her. The child was lifted up to the Messenger of Allah while his breath was disturbed in his chest. On seeing that, the eyes of the Prophet (PBUH) streamed with tears. Sa`d said, “O Messenger of Allah! What is this?” He replied, “It is compassion which Allah has placed in the hearts of His slaves, Allah is Compassionate only to those among His slaves who are compassionate (to others)”.

  Another version says: Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Allah shows compassion only to those among His slaves who are compassionate”.
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

Commentary:
1. Gathering of all the relatives is not necessary at the time of someone’s death. However, their participation in the funeral prayer is Mustahab Fard Kifayah (a desirable collective duty upon all Muslims; but which is sufficient or equivalent to all having performed it if it is performed by only some of them).

2. The desire of the relatives that at the time of someone’s death some pious people should be present is quite genuine so that the agonizing process of death is made easy by their prayers.

3. It is lawful that a trustworthy person is made to take an oath and it is essential for the trustee to fulfill it as it increases the mutual trust and love.

4. To shed tears on someone’s death, and to advice the relatives of the deceased for patience and accountability are permissible acts.

5. Expression of kindness and love is a gift from Allah and means to gain His Compassion, while deprivation from it is callousness.

30. Suhaib (May Allah be pleased with him) reported that the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “There lived a king before you and he had a court magician. As he (the magician) grew old, he said to the king: `I have grown old, so send me a young boy in order to teach him magic.’ The king sent him a young boy to serve the purpose. And on his way (to the magician) the young boy met a monk to whom he listened to and liked it. It became his habit that on his way to the magician, he would meet the monk and sit there and would come to the magician (late). The magician used to beat him because of this delay. He complained about this to the monk who said to him: ‘When you feel afraid of the magician, say: Members of my family detained me. And when you fear your family, say: The magician detained me.’ It so happened that there came a huge beast and it blocked the way of the people, and the young boy said: ‘I will know today whether the magician or the monk is better.’ He picked up a stone and said: `O Allah, if the way of the monk is dearer to You than the way of the magician, bring about death to the animal so that the people be able to move about freely.’ He threw that stone at it and killed it and the people began to move about freely. He then came to the monk and told him the story. The monk said: `Son, today you are superior to me. You have come to a stage where I feel that you would be soon put to a trial, and in case you are put to a trial, do not reveal me.’ That young boy began to heal those born blind and the lepers and he, in fact, began to cure people from all kinds of illnesses. When a courtier of the king who had gone blind heard about him, he came to him with numerous gifts and said, `If you cure me, all these things will be yours.’ He said, `I myself do not cure anyone. It is Allah, the Exalted, Alone Who cures; and if you affirm faith in Allah, I shall also supplicate to Allah to cure you.’ This courtier affirmed his faith in Allah and Allah cured him. He came to the king and sat by his side as he used to sit before. The king said to him, `Who restored your eyesight?’ He said, `My Rubb.’ Thereupon he said, ‘Do you have another lord besides me?’ He said, `My Rubb and your Rubb is Allah.’ So the king kept torturing him untill he revealed the young boy. The young boy was thus summoned and the king said to him, ‘O boy, it has been conveyed to me that you have become so much proficient in your magic that you cure the blind and the lepers and you do such and such.’ Thereupon he said, `I do not cure anyone; it is Allah Alone Who cures,’ and the king took hold of him and began to torture him until he revealed of the monk. The monk was summoned and it was said to him: `You should turn back from your religion.’ But he refused. The king sent for a saw, placed it in the middle of his head and cut him into two parts that fell down. Then the courtier of the king was brought forward and it was said to him: `Turn back from your religion.’ He, too, refused, and the saw was placed in the midst of his head and he was torn into two parts. Then the boy was sent for and it was said to him: `Turn back from your religion.’ He refused. The king then handed him over to a group of his courtiers, and said to them: `Take him to such and such mountain; make him climb up that mountain and when you reach its peak ask him to renounce his Faith. If he refuses to do so, push him to his death.’ So they took him and made him climb up the mountain and he said: `O Allah, save me from them in any way you like,’ and the mountain began to shake and they all fell down (dead) and that young boy came walking to the king. The king said to him, `What happened to your companions?’ He said, `Allah has saved me from them.’ He again handed him to some of his courtiers and said: `Take him and carry him in a boat and when you reach the middle of the sea, ask him to renounce his religion. If he does not renounce his religion throw him (into the water).’ So they took him and he said: `O Allah, save me from them.’ The boat turned upside down and they all drowned except the young boy who came walking to the king. The king said to him, `What happened to your companions?’ He said, `Allah has saved me from them,’ and he said to the king: `You cannot kill me until you do what I command you to do.’ The king asked, `What is that?’ He said, `Gather all people in one place and tie me up to the trunk of a tree, then take an arrow from my quiver and say: With the Name of Allah, the Rubb of the boy; then shoot me. If you do that you will be able to kill me.’ `The king called the people in an open field and tied the young boy to the trunk of a tree. He took out an arrow from his quiver, fixed in the bow and said, `With the Name of Allah, the Rubb of the young boy,’ he then shot the arrow and it hit the boy’s temple. The young boy placed his hand upon the temple where the arrow had hit him and died. The people then said: `We believe in the Rubb of this young boy.’ The king was told: `Do you see what you were afraid of, by Allah it has taken place; all people have believed.’ The king then commanded that trenches be dug and fire lit in them, and said: `He who would not turn back from his (the young boy’s) religion,  throw him in the fire’ or `he would be ordered to jump into it.’ They did so till a woman came with her child. She felt hesitant in jumping into the fire. The child said to her: `O mother! Endure (this ordeal) for you are on the Right Path”.
[Muslim].

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