6 Means to Prepare for the Final Journey

1. Obligatory religious duties

The merits and virtues of duly performing obligatory and supererogatory acts of worship are beyond counting. Let us look into the following hadith narrated by Abu Hurairah in this respect.

Allah’s Apostle said,

Allah said, ‘I will declare war against him who shows hostility to aWali (devoted friend) of Mine.

And the most beloved things with which My slave comes nearer to Me, is what I have enjoined upon him.

And My slave keeps on coming closer to Me through performing Nawafil (praying or doing extra deeds besides what is obligatory) till I love him.

When I love him, I become his sense of hearing with which he hears, and his sense of sight with which he sees, and his hand with which he grips, and his leg with which he walks; and if he asks Me, I will give him, and if he asks My protection (Refuge), I will protect him; (i.e. give him My Refuge).

And I do not hesitate to do anything as I hesitate to take the soul of the believer, for he hates death, and I hate to disappoint him.’” (Al-Bukhari)

To sum up, if you want to be loved and protected by Allah, just do as He, Glory be His, says in the above hadith.

In the same vein, the Prophet (Peace and blessings be upon him) was once asked about the best deed and he answered as is shown in the following hadith that is narrated by `Abdullah ibn Mas`ud:

“I asked Allah’s Apostle, ‘O Allah’s Apostle! What is the best deed?’ He replied, ‘To offer the prayers at its stated fixed times.’” (Al-Bukhari) 

Performing the prayer properly and duly is one of the things emphatically or unequivocally known to be part of the faith of Islam. Whosoever performs it as ordained by Allah will have light and guidance on the Day of Resurrection by Allah’s Grace; there is no doubt about that!

It should be noted that obligatory acts of worship here means, besides prayer, all other obligatory religious acts of worship such as paying the Zakah, performing Hajj, observing fast during the month of Ramadan and all other religious duties without any sort of negligence.

2. Supererogatory acts of worship

Supererogatory acts of worship or nawafil mean that you should perform additional voluntary acts of worship besides those prescribed for you.

It is well-known in Islam that each and every act of worship has its related obligatory as well as supererogatory acts. Similarly, as Prayer has its supererogatory acts, Zakah, Fasting and Pilgrimage have their own related supererogatory acts as well.

Remarkably, Islam leaves the door open for voluntary or supererogatory acts leaving the door open for noble competition,

{…Then for this, let the competitors for Allah’s Pleasure compete!} (Al-Mutaffifun 83:26)

3. Hidden charity

Hidden charity is nearer to sincerity than the one given in public. Allah says,

{If ye disclose your alms giving, it is well, but if ye hide it and give it to the poor, it will be better for you…} (Al-Baqarah 2:271)

Also, the Prophet (Peace and blessings be upon him) told us that among the seven persons whom Allah will give shade on the Day when there will be no shade but His,

… a man who gives a charitable gift so secretly that his left hand does not know what his right hand has given (i.e. nobody knows how much he has given in charity) …,” as narrated by Abu Hurairah in Al-Bukhari.

Concerning the merits and virtues of spending on the poor, narrated Abu Hurairah: Allah’s Apostle said,

If somebody gives in charity something equal to a date from his honestly earned money – for nothing ascends to Allah except good – then Allah will take it in His Right (Hand) and bring it up for its owner as anyone of you brings up a baby horse, till it becomes like a mountain.” (Al-Bukhari)

The above ayah indicates that concealing charity is better than disclosing it, because it protects one from showing off and boasting. However, if there is an apparent wisdom behind disclosing the charity, such as the people imitating this righteous act, then disclosing it becomes better than concealing it.

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About Dr. Ali Al-Halawani
Dr. Ali Al-Halawani is Assistant Professor of Linguistics and Translation Studies. He is an author, translator, and writer based in Canada. To date, Al-Halawani authored over 400 original articles on Islam and Muslims, most of which can be accessed on www.aboutislam.net and other famous websites. He has recently started to self-publish his articles and new books, which are available on Amazon and Kindle. You can reach him at [email protected]