Sent by: Br. Abu Talhah             (Part-I)

The Muslims should have Ḥusn az-Ẓann (Good Thoughts) of Allah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta’aalaa) in times of trial and afflictions.

Hadhrat Jaabir bin ʿAbdullah al-Ansari relates that he heard Allah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta’aalaa)’s Messenger (SallAllaho Alaihe WaSallam) say three days before his death: “None of you should die except whilst assuming the best about Allah.“ (Muslim)

As Muslims, we should always assume the best about our Lord, Allah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta’aalaa). As long as we are striving to engage in good deeds, we should expect the best outcome. We should expect that Allah will accept our good deeds; and from His grace, He will forgive us and bless us to live this life, until its conclusion, upon Iman (Faith).

This Husn az-Zann about Allah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta’aalaa) is having optimistic, positive thoughts about Allah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta’aalaa). It may become difficult at times of trials and afflictions. Many times trials come in succession – one after another or many come at the same time, simultaneously. During these times the heart feels broken, shattered and constricted. It feels as if the ‘walls’ of this world are closing in; ready to choke you to death. At these times one may feel worry and anxiety, which may affect their sleep and daily life. It is precisely at these times when we feel that everything is caving in and the world is about to swallow us that we must have good, sound and positive thoughts of Allah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta’aalaa) because we know that His tests are measured and precise according to our strength and capabilities. He knows us better than we know ourselves!

Allah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta’aalaa) knows exactly what is in our hearts and He is all aware of our innermost thoughts and feelings when we are facing these tests. He has already spoken about this in the Quraan when He says:

وَلَنَبْلُوَنَّكُمْ بِشَيْءٍ مِنَ الْخَوْفِ وَالْجُوعِ وَنَقْصٍ مِنَ الْأَمْوَالِ وَالْأَنْفُسِ وَالثَّمَرَاتِ وَبَشِّرِ الصَّابِرِينَ [البقرة: 155]

”Surely We will test you with a bit of fear and hunger, and loss in wealth and lives and fruits, and give good tidings to the patient.” (Al-Baqarah 2:155)

In this Aayah (Verse) Allah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta’aalaa) is not promising us wealth, health and prosperity all the time, but He is informing that He will surely test us with many things such as fear, hunger, loss of life, and property, but He is also giving glad tidings of relief from such trials and afflictions if we are patient.

Allah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta’aalaa) also says:

أَحَسِبَ النَّاسُ أَنْ يُتْرَكُوا أَنْ يَقُولُوا آمَنَّا وَهُمْ لَا يُفْتَنُونَ [العنكبوت: 2]

”Do people think that they will be left (at ease) only on their saying: ‘We believe’, and will not be put to any test?”(Al-‘Ankaboot 29:2)

Throughout the history of mankind, the righteous, the pious were always tested according to their capacity and Allah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta’aalaa)’s infinite wisdom of that capacity and capability. Our ancestors faced trials and tribulations that were extremely difficult and continuous as Allah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta’aalaa) has informed us:

أَمْ حَسِبْتُمْ أَنْ تَدْخُلُوا الْجَنَّةَ وَلَمَّا يَأْتِكُمْ مَثَلُ الَّذِينَ خَلَوْا مِنْ قَبْلِكُمْ مَسَّتْهُمُ الْبَأْسَاءُ وَالضَّرَّاءُ وَزُلْزِلُوا حَتَّى يَقُولَ الرَّسُولُ وَالَّذِينَ آمَنُوا مَعَهُ مَتَى نَصْرُ اللَّهِ أَلَا إِنَّ نَصْرَ اللَّهِ قَرِيبٌ [البقرة: 214]

”Do you think that you will enter Jannah (Paradise) while you have not yet been visited by (difficult) circumstances like those that were faced by the people who passed away before you? They were afflicted by hardship and suffering, and were so shaken down that the prophet, and those who believed with him, started saying: ‘When (will come) the help of Allah?’” (Al-Baqarah 2:214)

However, they remained firm, strong and true to their faith. Allah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta’aalaa) answered them directly with a clear statement, in the Aayah immediately following, which should bring ease to all of our hearts:

أَلَا إِنَّ نَصْرَ اللَّهِ قَرِيبٌ [البقرة: 214]

“Behold, the help of Allah is near.”

“Unquestionably, the help of Allah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta’aalaa) is near.” (Al-Baqarah 2:214)

Therefore, have patience in Allah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta’aalaa)’s Decree! Tie up your heart and restrict your mind from depression and losing hope and trust on Allah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta’aalaa) and His Divine Wisdom. Then take a deep breath and let your heart relax and be content with Allah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta’aalaa)’s Divine Decree. Know that with every hardship, ease is simply around the corner.

إِنَّ مَعَ الْعُسْرِ يُسْرًا [الشرح: 6]

“Undoubtedly, along with the hardship there is ease.” (Al-Inshiraah 94:6)

Allah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta’aalaa) informs us that with every difficulty there is ease, and then He reaffirms this by repeating this same Aayah in Soorah al-Inshiraah (Chapter 94). This particular Aayah is immensely important and even a very simple understanding of Arabic grammar will open the huge treasure chest that is the deep meaning of these two Aayaat and thereby bring peace, comfort and ease to the one afflicted with difficulty.

In this Soorah, Allah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta’aalaa) says:

فَإِنَّ مَعَ الْعُسْرِ يُسْرًا [الشرح: 5]

“So, undoubtedly, along with the hardship there is ease.” (Al-Inshiraah 94:5)

And then He repeats the same statement in the following Aayah:

إِنَّ مَعَ الْعُسْرِ يُسْرًا [الشرح: 6]

“Undoubtedly, along with the hardship there is ease.” (Al-Inshiraah 94:6)

Here Allah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta’aalaa) uses the word “Maʿa” (مَعَ) that means “With”, which is a different to when Allah (Subhaana-hu Wa Ta’aalaa) states:

سَيَجْعَلُ اللَّهُ بَعْدَ عُسْرٍ يُسْرًا [الطلاق: 7]

“Allah will soon bring ease after a difficulty.” (At-Talaaq 65:7)