The greatest reason for weakness of faith is being detached from the Book of Allah and the Sunnah of Prophet Muhammad.
This will kill you every single time. If you are detached from the book of Allah. Meaning you don’t read it, you don’t ponder upon its meaning, memorize, or try to implement in your life, then you can’t be wondering why your iman is weak. Because you have no attachment to Allah.
The Prophet Muhammad said:
I have left two matters with you. As long as you hold to them, you will not go the wrong way. They are the Book of Allah and my Sunnah. (Malik)
The Quran and the Sunnah
The first is the book of Allah, which is a rope, one end of it with Allah, and the other end of it in your hands. If you let go of that rope, then you lose your connection with Allah.
You have to continue to keep that connection with the book of Allah. The only way we know Allah is by that which has revealed to us about Himself.
Where else are you going to find that which Allah has revealed to us about Himself other than his words.
This is the closest way to get nearer to Allah in this life. People may say:
“Our prayer is our connection with Allah.” Is there any prayer that is valid without the words of Allah in it?
If you don’t pick up the Quran at least once a day in the morning or evening or anytime and at least thumb trough something and try to understand it, then you have lost a severe connection with Allah.
If you understand the Quran, then you get reward. But if you don’t understand it, what is it going to do for you? You don’t know what Allah is commanding you…
You get reward through reciting and understanding the Quran, and therefore, you must have connection through His book and through the Sunnah of the Prophet.
These two things are mandatory. Losing these will cause you to have weakness of iman. The longer you stay away from the Quran, the more you will find your faith draining.
Because the book of Allah is like gasoline in the car, if you don’t put any petrol in the car, what’s going to happen? It’s going to be stuck in the middle of the road, you’re not going to be able to go anywhere else.
The same without putting the heart filled with remembrance of Allah with His words, you will find the heart that is empty. Empty of any energy whatsoever to please Allah.
What it will have energy for is to disobey Allah, because Satan will be the one filling it up at that point, with the doubts and things of this nature.
One of the things that causes weakness of faith is staying away from an iman-nourishing environment for too long. Staying away from an environment that will nourish your faith for too long will cause you to fall into sin, because sin was one of the things that weakens faith.
Like for example if you’re sitting in the mosque, how many times do you think about sinning?
Very little. If you’re sitting in mosque and the Quran is being recited and the dhikr of Allah is going on, then your mind is not thinking about disobeying Allah.
Keeping away from righteous companions and people who remind you of Allah causes weakness of faith. The Prophet said:
Be careful of who you take as your companion because every man has the deen of his companion. (At-Tirmidhi)
If the person you spend most time with doesn’t remind you of Allah, then your faith will suffer because of that.
So you should either try to bring your companion closer to you, or if you feel you are too weak to do so, separate that company for the sake of Allah and let somebody else come and nourish that relationship.
Preoccupying with the dunya causes weakness of faith and forgetfulness of the hereafter. Your preoccupation with this life will cause your faith to be weak.
Because this dunya doesn’t do anything but suck the life out of iman. It will suck your faith like nothing else. It doesn’t mean that we shun everything in this life to have iman. No! but it must be in some balance:
But among them is he who says, “Our Lord, give us in this world [that which is] good and in the Hereafter [that which is] good and protect us from the punishment of the Fire.” (Quran 2:201)
We ask Allah for the good in this life and in the next, but upon that we ask Him to save us from the punishment of the next life.
The Prophet said:
He is doomed who is the slave of the dinar and dirham. (Al-Bukhari)
That the person who is slave of money, job… is doomed. It doesn’t mean you don’t need to go out and work. You must work, work is worship in and of itself.
How to Fix our Iman
The Prophet said:
Faith wears out in your hearts the way that your garments would wear out. (Mustadrak al-Haakim)
You have to understand that iman rises and falls. Ask Allah to renew your heart. Sometimes you feel you’re hypocrite, but this is a sign of iman as well. Don’t beat yourself up because you think you have become a hypocrite.
The thing we need to do to try to fix, though, is that it doesn’t fall to the point that we fall into sin.
We have to learn that iman is like a muscle. If I go to the gym, would I pick up the 50 pond weight first? And just start checking that thing over my head if I’ve never worked out before?
You start with the little weight correct. And when those get easier, then you go to easier one because what happens is you build up something called muscle memory so that the muscles remember these movements and get stronger.
But if you stop working on those muscles, what happens? They go straight back down hill.
Faith is a muscle that must be worked on. But if you want to work on your faith, you can’t start by saying: “Ok, I’m going to fix my iman by reading a unit of Quran a day, pray 20 rakahs at night, read 50 hadiths, fast…”
Because you’re not going to be able to keep with that regiment. You’re going to go from marginal Muslim to a super Muslim in one day.
It doesn’t work like that. You need to work at it slowly.