And be not like those who forgot Allah and He caused them to forget their ownselves. Those are the rebellious. (Quran 59:19)
Chapter Al Hashr is a very interesting chapter in the Quran. It is one of the chapters that are considered the “Musabbihat—” which start with the Tasbeeh of Allah (there are six other chapters that also do so).
These chapters are there to increase the iman of a believer who is struggling with his faith and to remind the one who is losing his way. And towards the end of this chapter, Allah reminds us not to be among those who forget Him.
Unfortunately, part of our daily lives are led almost on autopilot, without remembering Allah. We go through life, and, as Allah said, we forget our own selves.
In our struggle and rush to earn a living, we have somehow forgotten to live.
We work our socks off for our boss and yet refuse to play for a minute with our child. And we smile at the customer of our business and yet our spouse has not seen us smile for a year. We obey our boss to the letter, and we have forgotten the Lord of the Universe and that He should be obeyed too.
We do not find time for ourselves or our hobbies, because we are there earning a living and trying to make more money. And yet we are depressed, sad, and cranky. Is this the life we want?
In our race to make a great life, we have failed to appreciate the greatness of what we already have.
We race with others and try to have a great life. And we need the new phone, the new laptop and the new car. We search for the most beautiful of houses and the most amazing of holiday destinations.
And yet, through all this rush, we fail to appreciate the people and the things that Allah has already blessed us with. We never thank Allah for the food that He puts on our plate. And we moan about the roof over our head, forgetting that others live under the open sky.
In our search for the extraordinary, we have passed over the amazing things found in simplicity.
We look for the next big thing, and the next super gadget, and the next best holiday, and we forget all that Allah has given to us in our simplicity. How going to Fajr in the Masjid could be something that enriches us.
We lose out on the glorious sunsets and the amazing skylines because we are too glued on finding things that are extraordinary.
In our incessant drive to succeed, we have somehow failed to be happy and content.
We are succeeding. Lives are improving. Cars are better, roads are better, communication is better, healthcare is better.
Every material thing is better, and yet mental health is the worst that it has been in history.
We have succeeded everywhere, but in keeping ourselves happy. And we search for happiness like it is an elusive thing, forgetting that happiness lies in the palm of our hands. It is in aiming for the best, but also being content with what you have.
In trying to please people who do not care, we have hurt and alienated those closest to our hearts.
We do our best to impress our boss, impress a judge at a program, impress people who we think are big, influential people, and we try over and over again. But through it all, we neglect our parents, our spouses are not cared for, and our children are forgotten.
Friends who have stood by us for a lifetime are not valued, while those who have money and power are chosen even if they are fake.
Somehow, somewhere we have lost our priorities in this journey called life. And we have forgotten the Lord who has given it to us as well.
Through it all, we have forgotten to live.
May Allah give life to our hearts again and make us among the successful.