Anger prevents one from seeing beauties

Updated 21 August 2014
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Anger prevents one from seeing beauties

An enormous anger that could appear at any moment; a multidirectional, overflowing, consuming, irrepressible, unstoppable and sometimes unsubstantiated anger…
One never knows when it will appear or when it will break out; moreover, sometimes anger might come to such a point that it could make people attack one another. A person consumed by his anger might commit an offense in a moment’s time that he would eternally regret. He either kills someone, or burns down his house and damages his properties, or commits suicide and throws himself into the depths of the Hell with his own hands. It is all too possible to see examples of such anger in the newspapers or on television.
Some people are very much inclined to get angry, to get tense and raise their voices, to argue and even fight about ordinary, daily events. Such people get angry when they are stuck in traffic for a while, when something they bought is defective, when they are not able to go to lunch at the planned hour and asked to do something on top of that, when they are criticized, when they have to walk somewhere on a very hot day, when someone accidentally damages something they have; in short, they are inclined to get angry about the great majority of the things they come across throughout the day. They consider those incidents to be unwanted, uncalled for incidents that disrupt the natural course of their daily life. The tension and the facial expressions we see on such people give the impression that they could start quarreling at any moment. In fact, rage and anger are feelings that greatly harm those who experience these emotions because they are against human nature.

Anger not compatible with nature
Human nature is created in a way that savors friendship, love, affection, sharing one’s happiness with others and being surrounded with trusted people. Rage and anger prevents one from enjoying a sincere friendship, love and mutual understanding. Such people are always left alone, without friends; consequently, it would not be possible for them to be happy and enjoy the blessings they’ve been bestowed.
Since loneliness is against our nature, it overwhelms people and causes distress. Even though some people often claim that they enjoy being alone, that they do not love anyone, that they only love themselves and that they can only be comfortable when they are on their own; one can safely say that they are not genuine in this claim. Everyone enjoys love, everyone likes establishing friendship and being loved. This search for love is actually the reason why some people who are left alone because of their anger befriend their cats, dogs or birds and become so fond of them, they talk to them as if they are talking to a human being.
Rage and anger drags people into loneliness, unhappiness and desperation. It draws both them and those around them away from beauties and makes the world an unbearable place for them.

Anger harms
There is a prevalent misconception in many societies which states that a humble person who refrains from arguments would be oppressed. People who internalize an aggressive attitude believe that they would be debasing themselves or be defeated if they assume a humble attitude. Yielding to these negative thoughts, instead of calming down their rage and anger is a very dangerous state of mind which harms the concerned person the most and prevents him from seeing the beauties in the world.
There are many people who keep away from those they love the most simply because they cannot forgive each other and fail to overcome those feelings of rage and anger. Those people, because they fail to forgive, lead a life devoid of love, forfeiting intimacy, confidence, loyalty, fidelity and the respect and trustworthy friendships they could have established with one another.
Rage and anger prevents one from forgiving, showing humility, acting justly and approaching another with trust, acting on good assumptions, looking at things with goodness and acting with love and compassion. Being forgiving, keeping one’s temper and assuming a humble attitude is much easier and more natural than bearing a grudge they are far more productive and beautiful feelings. Living by this moral code every second could only be possible with faith and fear of Allah.

The zest of overcoming anger
Allah says, Muslims are “… those who control their rage and pardon other people.” (Qur’an, 3:134) What is important is to control rage even if one feels it inside. A faithful person would refrain from being consumed in that anger no matter what, even if they suffer a loss. One who is mature enough to forgive — even when he is 100 percent right — would feel a profound relief, joy, happiness and contentment inside. Allah is the One Who makes him live those beauties.
As a blessing from His Sight, Allah enables His servants who show this moral virtue to feel this contentment and peace.
While a person who doesn’t know how to forgive and assume a humble tone experiences the pain, suffering and distress of that rage and anger he feels inside, and feels consumed by the torment and remorse of thinking “should I have forgiven?,” those who can forgive enjoy the beauty of love, respect and friendship they attained with the moral virtue they’ve displayed.
The attitude and the tone of those who believe should always be calming. Having a quick temper and holding a grudge is unseemly for a Muslim. A Muslim doesn’t allow himself to be consumed by events; he watches them play their course and follows his destiny. He would be fully aware of the fact that even the falling of a single leaf has been determined in destiny. Consequently, he knows that everything that happens in the trial of the life of this world is not for him to be sad, to be distressed or to become angry — but rather to endure, to show patience and submission; for him to ask for Allah’s forgiveness.
He knows that everything is created to make him to turn toward Allah. All these incidents are created for us to show our determination in living by the moral values of the Qur’an.
Responding to everything, to every attitude with kindness and compassion and thinking that Allah surely creates everything for a good reason is a necessity of good morality. In the Qur’an, Allah says; “They should rather pardon and overlook. Would you not love Allah to forgive you? Allah is Ever-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” (Surat An-Nur; 22) We should not forget that other Muslims want a compassionate and forgiving attitude from us as much as we want Allah to forgive us.

The writer has authored more than 300 books translated in 73 languages on politics, religion and science.


The beauty of prayer in Islam

Updated 23 September 2016
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The beauty of prayer in Islam

GOING deeper into our spiritual state during prayers (salah) requires that we have a presence of heart and are mindful of the words being said during the prayers.
Our prayer will feel shorter, yet when we look at how much time we actually spent, we will think, “Did I just spend 10 minutes?” or even 15 and 20 minutes.
A person who began applying this said he wished the prayer would never end.
A feeling that Ibn Al-Qayyim describes as “what the competitors compete for… it is nourishment for the soul and the delight of the eyes,” and he also said, “If this feeling leaves the heart, it is as though it is a body with no soul.”

The love of Allah
Some people’s relationship with Allah is limited to following orders and leaving prohibitions, so that one does not enter hell. Of course, we must follow orders and leave prohibitions, but it needs to be done out of more than fear and hope; it should also be done out of love for Allah. Allah says in the Qur’an: “… Allah will bring forth [in place of them] a people He will love and who will love Him.” (Qur’an, 5:54)
We often find that when a lover meets the beloved, hearts are stirred and there is warmth in that meeting. Yet when we meet Allah, there is not even an ounce of this same feeling. Allah says in the Qur’an: “And (yet) among the people are those who take other than Allah as equals (to Him). They love them as they (should) love Allah. But those who believe are stronger in love for Allah.” (Qur’an, 2:165)
And those who believe are stronger in love for Allah. There should be a feeling of longing, and when we raise our hands to start the prayer, warmth and love should fill our hearts because we are now meeting with Allah. A dua of the Prophet (peace be upon him): “O Allah, I ask You for the longing to meet You” (An-Nisa’i, Al-Hakim)
Ibn Al-Qayyim says in his book Tareeq Al-Hijratain that Allah loves His Messengers and His believing servants, and they love Him and nothing is more beloved to them than Him. The love of one’s parents has a certain type of sweetness, as does the love of one’s children, but the love of Allah far supersedes any of that. The Prophet, peace be upon him, said: “Any person who combines these three qualities will experience the sweetness of faith: 1) that God and His messenger are dearer to him than anything else; 2) that his love of others is purely for God’s sake; and 3) that he hates to relapse into disbelief as much as he hates to be thrown in the fire.” (Bukhari)
Thus, the first thing he mentioned was: “… that God and His messenger are more beloved to him than anything else…”
Ibn Al-Qayyim says: “Since ‘there is nothing like unto Him’ (Qur’an, 42:11), there is nothing like experiencing love for Him.”
If you feel this love for Him, it will be a feeling so intense, so sweet, that you would wish the prayer would never ever end.
Do you truly want to feel this love? Then ask yourself: ‘why do you or should you love Allah?’
Know that you love people for one (or all, in varying degrees) of three reasons: For their beauty, because of their exalted character or/and because they have done good to you. And know that Allah combines all of these three to the utmost degree.

All-embracing beauty
We’ve all been touched by beauty. It is almost fitrah (natural disposition) to love what is beautiful. Ali ibn Abi Talib, may Allah be pleased with him, said about the Prophet, peace be upon him, that it was “as if the sun is shining from his face.” Jabir (may God be pleased with him) said: “The Messenger of Allah was more handsome, beautiful, and radiant than the full moon” (Tirmidhi)
Allah made all His Prophets have a certain beauty so that people would have a natural inclination toward them.
And beauty is more than what is in the face, because beauty is in all of creation and somehow has the ability to take our breath away and give us peace simultaneously. The glimmer of the crescent moon on a calm night, the intensity of a waterfall as the water drops for thousands of feet, the sunset by the sea … certain scenes of natural unspoiled beauty stirs something in us. As Allah is the One Who made it beautiful, so what of Allah’s beauty?
Ibn Al-Qayyim said: “And it is enough to realize Allah’s Beauty when we know that every internal and external beauty in this life and the next are created by Him, so what of the beauty of their Creator?”
This fitrah for loving what is beautiful is because Allah is beautiful. One of His Names is Al-Jameel (the Most Beautiful). Ibn Al-Qayyim states that the beauty of Allah is something that a person cannot imagine and only He knows it. There is nothing of it in creation save for glimpses.
Ibn Al-Qayyim says if all of creation were the most beautiful they could be (so let’s imagine, ever single human being looked as beautiful as Yusuf, peace be upon him, and the whole world was like Paradise), and all of them combined from the beginning of time until the Day of Judgment, they would not even be like a ray in comparison to the sun when compared to Allah. Allah’s beauty is so intense that we will not even be able to take it in this life. In the Qur’an, Allah describes Musa’s (peace be upon him) request: “And when Moses arrived at Our appointed time and his Lord spoke to him, he said, ‘My Lord, show me (Yourself) that I may look at You.’ (Allah) said: ‘You will not see Me but look at the mountain; if it should remain in place, then you will see Me.’ But when his Lord appeared to the mountain He rendered it level, and Moses fell unconscious.” (Qur’an, 7:143)
Even the mountain could not bear the beauty of Allah and crumbled, and when Musa, peace be upon him, saw this (he did not even see Allah), he fell unconscious. This is why on the Day of Judgment it is Allah’s light that will shine on everything. We talk about breathtaking beauty, but we have yet to experience Allah’s beauty. While things in this world can be beautiful or majestic or if they combine both they are finite, true majesty and beauty are for Allah: “And there will remain the Face of your Lord, Owner of Majesty and Honor.” (Qur’an, 55:27)
Keeping all of this in mind, the Prophet, peace be upon him, said: “Allah directs His Face toward the face of His servant who is praying, as long as he does not turn away” (Tirmidhi).
Remember this in your prayer, and ask Allah to allow you the joy of seeing Him in Paradise.