I can’t stop thinking about the past and I do think in some way it's sheytan that is trying to make me doubt about God's mercifulness, but I still have my iman and I know God forgives believers that sincerely repent. I just wish there was a way for me to move on in life and forget about the past.
I wish I could go back and change the past but unfortunately, I can’t. I do not want God to be not happy about me and I end up in hellfire. I try to stay away from everything that God had forbidden and done good deeds. How can one live a normal life if you are hopeless of God's mercy?
In this counseling answer:
I would kindly suggest that you evaluate your thought patterns regarding other matters in your life.
Seek out a counselor in your area for an assessment.
You may wish to check out online forms and articles relating to symptoms of anxiety and OCD.
Thank you for writing to us. You sound like a very wonderful Muslim who is very concerned about pleasing Allah swt. It also appears that you have done much research and reading about Allah’s mercy and forgiveness.
Fearing and Loving Allah
Your desire to go back in time and never have committed these sins is normal and natural. It shows you really love Allah and fear to go against what He has ordered us to refrain from. In reality, though, you know that you can’t go back.
Being a conscious Muslim, however, you know that your sins are forgiven because Allah in His Mercy tells us this in the Qur’an.
Deep down you probably know that you are forgiven because you probably have sought sincere repentance.
You know Islamically that Allah forgives us if we sincerely repent. However, you still focus and obsess upon thoughts of not being forgiven.
You also have thoughts that revisit the past by thinking about your sins. You think about these things a lot it seems, and it appears these thoughts are intrusive but I do not know for certain.
I am not sure if you are experiencing “obsessive” thoughts in other areas of your life.
I would kindly suggest that you evaluate your thought patterns regarding other matters in your life. For example, have you ever thought excessively about a school exam or had thoughts that wouldn’t go away concerning other things in your life like deadlines, work, mistakes on the job, etc?
Check out this counseling video:
Your thinking continuously about your past sins may, indeed, be a sign of anxiety or obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) as they are unwanted, intrusive thoughts that you cannot get rid of.
Rationally, you have enough Islamic knowledge to know that Allah does forgive and is merciful. Therefore your over-thinking upon these things may signify a mental health issue, one that can be resolved insha’Allah.
Often times when we have conditions of anxiety, it can manifest in various ways. Some ways are panic attacks, other ways are repetitive behaviors some people experience deep fear, others have intrusive, unwanted thoughts.
I am not stating that’s what you have, but I am asking that insha’Allah, you seek out a counselor in your area for an assessment. It may be that you are experiencing some form of anxiety.
I cannot diagnose you, only a counselor who does an assessment on you can get to the root of these unwanted thoughts concerning sins.
Assessment & Counseling
I kindly suggest that you get an assessment and ongoing counseling to resolve this issue, insha’Allah. I can advise insha’Allah, that you begin to explore other feelings and symptoms which you may have and which may be related to anxiety.
You may wish to check out online forms and articles relating to symptoms of anxiety and OCD. There are even self-questionnaires that you could do to see if you have symptoms, but again they are not diagnostic they’re just simply rough estimates of how high on an anxiety scale you may score.
The most beneficial advise insha’Allah, is to seek counseling and begin towards the healing journey so you can truly put all of this behind you.
We wish you the best,
Disclaimer: The conceptualization and recommendations stated in this response are very general and purely based on the limited information provided in the question. In no event shall AboutIslam, its counselors or employees be held liable for any damages that may arise from your decision in the use of our services.