Allah Almighty states in the Holy Quran:
وَلَنَبْلُوَنَّکُمْ بِشَیۡءٍ مِّنَ الْخَوۡفِ وَالْجُوۡعِ وَنَقْصٍ مِّنَ الۡاَمۡوٰلِ وَالۡاَنۡفُسِ وَالثَّمَرٰتِ ؕ وَبَشِّرِ الصّٰبِرِیۡنَ﴿۱۵۵﴾ۙ
And We shall definitely put you to test with something of fear and hunger and with some loss of wealth and lives and fruits; and give glad tidings to the patient.
(Al-Baqarah 2, Verse 155)
وَعَنْ أبِيْ هُرَيْرَةَ – رضي الله عنه – قَالَ: قَالَ رَسُوْلُ اللهِ – صلى الله عليه وسلم: «مَا يَزَالُ الْبَلاَءُ بِالْمُؤْمِنِ وَالْمُؤْمِنَةِ فِي نَفْسِهِ وَوَلَدِهِ وَمَالِهِ حَتّٰى يَلْقَى اللهَ تَعَالَى وَمَا عَلَيهِ خَطِيئَةٌ».
رواه الترمذي، وَقالَ: «حديث حسن صحيح»
Sayyiduna Abu Hurairah – may Allah be pleased with him – reported: The Messenger of Allah – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – said:
A Muslim, male or female, continues to remain under trial in respect of his life, wealth and offspring until he faces Allah, the Exalted, free from sin.
(Tirmidhi, he said “The Hadeeth is Hasan Sahih”)
Allamah Muhammad ibn ‘Allan – may Allah be pleased with him – writes as follows:
The calamities that befall a Muslim in the form of an illness, loss and poverty etc. they are superficially painful but if a servant firmly believes that they are a gift from “The Most Merciful of all who show mercy” then the sufferings one endures transition to peace. A Muslim is often caught into troubles of this nature till he dies in a state when he is free from all sins and they all have been erased from his account.
(Daleel al-Faaliheen Vol. 1, p. 199)
Minor Sins are Forgiven
Mufti Ahmed Yaar Khan Na’eemi – may Allah be pleased with him – writes the following passage explaining a specific concept derived from Ahadeeth while commenting on this Hadeeth:
Sins, in this Hadeeth, refer to minor sins amongst “violation of Huqooqullah” (Allah’s rights upon the servant). As far as the Shariah laws as well as “the violation to Hoqooq al-‘Ibaad” (the rights of Allah’s servants) are concerned, they are not forgiven by an illness etc. The Hadeeth does not imply that whenever one recovers from his illness all his unpaid debts or missed Salahs are forgiven.
(Mir’at al-Manajeeh Vol. 2, p. 418)
One Should Worry if He Does not Get Sick for 40 Consecutive Days:
Illnesses are one of Allah’s bounties. When we are affected by an ailment we should be thankful to Allah Almighty for giving us an antidote for our sins. One should begin to worry if he is not getting sick, as AlaHazrat – may Allah be pleased with him – mentioned in his anecdotes as follows:
The Imam of Ahlus Sunnah Imam Ahmed Raza – may Allah be pleased with him – says: If 40 days have passed since one has been sick in any sort of ailment or not tested with poverty or degradation, he should fear, lest he has been left out.
(Al-Malfooz p. 159)
It is reported that once the wife of Sheikh Fathe Mosuli Radi Allahu ‘Anhu tripped and fell, with the result that her toe nail also broke. However, she continued to smile. When she was asked whether she did not feel any pain when her toe nail broke, she replied, “Due to the reward for this in the Hereafter, in happiness, I did not in the least feel any pain.”
(Keemiya-e-Sa’adat p. 738)
There is no doubt that when a person comes to realise a greater reward, then they are easily able to manage small and minor difficulties. If we look at the labourers who work in the fields in the hot burning sun just to earn a few pennies, they are able to put up with extreme testing circumstances. The same with those people who carry passengers in their vehicle in a commercial manner. They are prepared to put up with all types of abuses and stress during the day because they are waiting to see what the income would be at the end of the day.
This is the reason that the wife of this great Saint became happy. She understood that this pain and difficulty would only last for a few minutes but the reward that one would get in the Hereafter would be much more and a person would continue to receive reward for this difficulty.
She also understood the words of the Holy Prophet May Allah send peace and blessings upon him in this regard. He said:
Any sickness, sadness or pain of a Muslim, even he or she is pricked by thorn, whatever reaches them through this, Allah Almighty nullifies a sin of theirs. (Bukhari; Muslim Shareef)
No pain or sickness reaches a Muslim but that through this, Allah Almighty sheds away the sins of that person like a tree which sheds its leaves.
Major reward is received through major calamity and difficulty. When Allah Almighty loves a certain nation, then He immerses them in difficulty. Whoever becomes pleased with this, for them is the Divine Pleasure of Allah Almighty. Whoever becomes displeased with this, for them is the Displeasure of Allah Almighty.
He who is patient with difficulty, on the Day of Judgement, Allah Almighty will be pleased him with seven hundred degrees (in status). Each degree is as expansive as (the area) between the Arsh and the lowest earth.
Those who live in comfort (and pomp) who sees the immense stature given to those who were patient in times of difficulty, they would wish that (while he was on earth) if only their own flesh was cut with a scissor and by being patient at this time they would have also received the same status (as other are receiving today).
Paradise Through Patience
Hadrat Sayyiduna Aanis bin Malik – may Allah be pleased with him – narrates that once the Holy Prophet – may Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him – went to a certain tribe and he was accompanied the Holy Prophet – may Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him. An Ansari lady then a message to the Holy Prophet – may Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him – that her son was in his final moments in the world and she requested the Holy Prophet – may Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him – to come to her house.
The Holy Prophet – may Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him – then walked to her house accompanied by his blessed companions. He picked up the young boy in his hands and the young boy passed away at that moment. Tears filled the blessed eyes of the Holy Prophet – may Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him. The mother mentioned, “Allah Almighty has taken away His Trust and everything belongs to Him and for everything there is a time prescribed. Therefore, one should have patience and attain reward through this.”
The Holy Prophet – may Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him – declared, “A man certainly attains a very lofty place in Jannah and this is not attained through Salaah, through fasting or through Hajj or through Ibadah.”
They asked him, “Through what is this high status attained.”
He replied, “When problems appear, a person displays patience.” (In other words, this is the main reason that a person attains a very lofty status and position in Jannah).
- We come to know from this Hadith that Muslims are special targets of trials, but a redeeming feature of these trials is that Muslims’ sins are pardoned through them provided they remain firm in their Faith and patience.
- Any calamity or disease that befalls a Muslim, becomes a kaffarah for his or her minor sins.