In this counseling answer:
• Seeking refuge with Allah from Shaytaan in the form of prayer is the simplest thing to begin with.
• The key to success is in remaining persistent with it and not letting little hiccups stop you.
• Look for all the evidence you can to counter your own argument.
• On studying the Quran in depth, you will be reassured that this book can only have come from the words of Allah.
As-Salamu Alaikum wa Rahmatullah wa barakatuh sister,
Just to reassure you to begin with; you are not alone. What you have been experiencing is very common. Most people at some point in their lives do have doubts about their faith. Some people get the worse than others. Some people just have random fleeting thoughts, and for other times it’s a bit stronger – like in your case.
In fact, it is even reported that some people close to the Prophet (SAW) went through exactly the same too, and they were good people. There are even hadiths about it. So, just to assure that even though it seems very disturbing, it can happen to the best of people.
These kind of thoughts are a result of Shaytaan’s whispers. The treatment for this is quite simple but requires a lot of persistence to finally push it all away.
Broadly, seeking comfort with Allah and getting close to Him whilst seeking refuge from Shaytaan is what you need to be doing to put an end to these thoughts.
Firstly, seeking refuge with Allah from Shaytaan in the form of prayer is the simplest thing to begin with. Say this during your formal acts of daily prayer, but also say the words before you do anything. These words alone are enough to frighten Shaytaan away. Saying these words frequently ensure that Allah is in your mind at all times. Shaytan knows it. This lets him know that you’re serious. Eventually, the thoughts will stop as he realizes that he no longer has power over you and his efforts are fruitless.
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This practice needs to be persistent as the moment you forget Shaytaan will grab that opportunity to end your thoughts again.
Setting little reminders around the place will help you to remember, especially at the beginning when it’s less of a habit and easier to forget. Just simply little stickers or pieces of paper stuck to the wall in key places, visible places to keep the reminder there. On the backs of doors are always a good idea so you seem them as you move around the house and do various tasks when Shaytaan is more likely to be busy.
When you start, there will be times when you forget and this may be frustrating. The key to success is in remaining persistent with it and not letting little hiccups stop you. That is what Shaytaan wants, so make sure to resist the whispers and continue with good intentions until the thoughts desist.
However, if the thoughts are enduring, you can introduce other acts the also push Shaytaan away such as making dhikr, fasting, attending study circles with other sisters and reading the Qur’an.
Reading the Qur’an, or at least playing it in the house is a way to keep Allah in mind as well as push Shaytaan away. Perhaps setting yourself targets with the Qur’an that will keep you motivated to pick it up every day. This can be in terms of the number of pages you recite, or the number of ayat you aim to memorize.
This activity may be particularly useful in your case as it will allow you to the concept with the Qur’an and realize the truth in it. You may even include the study of the tafsir in this also.
On studying the Quran in depth, you will be reassured that this book can only have come from the words of Allah. Given that your thoughts revolve around negative thoughts about the Qur’an this will reinforce the fact that your thoughts are incorrect which will serve to be a particularly strong way to push Shaytaan away as he knows that the moment your weakness is in the Qur’an. The moment he sees that your thoughts aren’t deterring you from reading it, he will realize his attempts are no longer working and will stop.
Aside from taking a spiritual approach to overcoming these thoughts, you can also take a psychological approach. Whilst you are challenging Islam regarding how the Qur’an was revealed, try now challenging yourself also. Look for all the evidence you can to counter your own argument. Ask yourself things like ‘if the Qur’an is really a lie, why do millions of people who have been following it? Are that many people really that stupid?’ Why would Allah even allow that to happen when we know he has the power to do anything to prevent such atrocities of the Qur’an being changed.
After all, isn’t one of the biggest miracles of Allah that, unlike other religions, the Quran has not been changed? Not even a single word, from the day it was revealed. Remembering that there are thousands of scholars who have devoted their lives to studying the Qur’an in depths is beyond our comprehension to understand every single word that was revealed.
May Allah guide you and protect you from distressing thoughts. May you find comfort in the words of Allah.
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