Allah Almighty states in the Holy Quran:
یٰۤاَیُّہَا الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوا اصْبِرُوۡا وَصَابِرُوۡا ٪
‘O believers! be patient, and excel in patience with the enemies.
(Aale ‘Imran 3, Verse 200)
وَعَنْ أبِيْ هُرَيْرَةَ – رَضِيَ اللهُ عَنْهُ: أنَّ رَسُوْلَ اللهِ – صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ – قَالَ: «يَقُولُ اللهُ تَعَالَى: مَا لِعَبْدِيْ الْمُؤْمِنِ عِنْدِي جَزَاءٌ إِذَا قَبَضْتُ صَفِيَّهُ مِنْ أهْلِ الدُّنْيَا ثُمَّ احْتَسَبَهُ إلاَّ الجَنَّةَ. رواه البخاري.
Sayyiduna Abu Hurairah – may Allah be pleased with him – reported: The Messenger of Allah – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – said, “Allah Almighty states: I have no reward other than Jannah for a believing servant of Mine who remains patient for My sake when I take away his loved one amongst the inhabitants of the world.
Hafiz Ibn Hajar al-‘Asqalani – may Allah be pleased with him – writes in Fat’h al-Baari: The term “loved one” in this instance does not only refer to one’s own child but it is common between all the loved ones; such as, one’s brother, father and includes all the people and things whom and which one loves. The choice of word by our beloved Prophet – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – is singular, suggesting that even if someone loses just one beloved and he observes patience over it, there is Paradise for him.
Paradise on Sabr at the Loss of One’s Child
أَخْرَجَهُ أَحْمَدُ وَالنَّسَائِيُّ أَنَّ رَجُلًا كَانَ يَأْتِي النَّبِيَّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ وَمَعَهُ بن لَهُ فَقَالَ أَتُحِبُّهُ قَالَ نَعَمْ فَفَقَدَهُ فَقَالَ مَا فَعَلَ فُلَانٌ قَالُوا يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ مَاتَ ابْنُهُ فَقَالَ أَلَا تُحِبُّ أَنْ لَا تَأْتِيَ بَابًا مِنْ أَبْوَابِ الْجَنَّةِ إِلَّا وَجَدْتَهُ يَنْتَظِرُكَ فَقَالَ رَجُلٌ يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ أَلَهُ خَاصَّةً أَمْ لِكُلِّنَا قَالَ بَلْ لِكُلِّكُمْ
Imam Ahmed and Nasa’i – may Allah be pleased with them – report that a man used to come to the Holy Prophet – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – with a child. The Holy Prophet – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – asked him if he loved him. “Yes”, he replied. He then lost his child. The Holy Prophet – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – inquired his companions about the situation of the man. They replied, “O Allah’s Messenger, his son has passed away.” He said, “Would you not like that whichever door of Paradise you enter through and find him waiting there for you?” A man said, “O Allah’s Messenger – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him, is this privilege exclusive to him alone or for us as well?” He replied, “For you all as well.”
(Fat’h al-Baari, under Hadeeth No. 6424)
This lovely Hadeeth encompasses the loss of everything one loves; one’s parents, wife, children, loss of health etc., if one observes patience at the loss of anything that was dear to him, Allah willing he will deserve Paradise. Hence this Hadeeth is a great glad tiding.
(Mir’aat al-Manajeeh Vol. 2, p. 505)
Nobody had seen the great leader of the Chishti spiritual order, Sayyiduna Fudhail ibn ‘Iyadh – may Allah be pleased with him – ever smiling but the day his son (a Wali) Sayyiduna Ali ibn Fudhail – may Allah be pleased with him – passed away, he was seen smiling. People asked, “What is the merry occasion for which you are smiling now?” He replied, “I am smiling because I find myself pleased in the decree of Allah, for the death of my son is the result of Allah’s Divine Decree. Whatever the decree of Allah Almighty, my pleasure lies in there.”
(Tadhkiratul Awliya Vol. 1, p. 86)
The Virtue of the People of Sabr in Allah’s Sacred Tablet
وَقَالَ ابْنُ عَبَّاسٍ: أول شي كَتَبَهُ اللَّهُ تَعَالَى فِي اللَّوْحِ الْمَحْفُوظِ إِنِّي أَنَا اللَّهُ لَا إِلَهَ إِلَّا أَنَا، مُحَمَّدٌ رَسُولِي، مَنِ اسْتَسْلَمَ لِقَضَائِي، وَصَبَرَ عَلَى بَلَائِي، وَشَكَرَ نَعْمَائِي، كَتَبْتُهُ صِدِّيقًا وَبَعَثْتُهُ مَعَ الصِّدِّيقِينَ، ومن لم يستسلم لقضائي وَلَمْ يَصْبِرْ عَلَى بَلَائِي، وَلَمْ يَشْكُرْ نَعْمَائِي، فَلْيَتَّخِذْ إِلَهًا سِوَايَ.
Sayyiduna Ibn ‘Abbas – may Allah be pleased with him – said: It is written in the protected tablet, “There is none worthy of worship but I Muhammad – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – is My Messenger. Whoever is pleased with My Decree and observes patience over the calamities afflicted by Me and is grateful for My favours, I have written them amongst the Siddeeq (high ranking Awliya) and will raise him among the Siddeeqs but the one who is not pleased with My Decree and does not observe patience over My calamity and is ungrateful towards My favours, he must take someone else as God besides Me.”
(Tafseer Qurtubi under Surah Al-Burooj, Verse No. 22)
This Ummah and Sabr – Sabr a means of spiritual knowledge
Sayyiduna Abu Darda – may Allah be pleased with him – reported: I heard the Holy Prophet – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – saying: Allah Almighty said to Sayyiduna ‘Isa – peace be upon him, “O ‘Isa, I am about to create a nation after you who will recite My praises when they receive something they like and if they come across anything undesirable, they will observe patience in hope of its virtue though they will neither have knowledge nor insight.” He asked, “Why would they be blessed with it even without having knowledge or insight?” Allah Almighty stated, “I will grant them from My Knowledge and Insight.”
(Shu’ab al-Iman Vol. 7, p. 190, Hadeeth No. 9953)
- Child, wife and parents, etc., are the dearest people to everyone. It is a great sign of Faith to accept their death as the Will of Allah, to bear their loss with patience.
- Wailing and complaining exhibits weakness of Iman.
- The reward of patience on such tragedies is Allah’s Paradise while the result of undesirability over these matters is displeasure of Allah.
- One becomes dearer and closer to Allah Almighty through patience and even become a Siddeeq.
- Allah blesses the one who makes Sabr with knowledge and spiritual insight.