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Do You Put Your Time to Good Use?

{It is He who made the sun a shining radiance and the moon a light, determining phases for it so that you might know the number of years and how to calculate time. Allah did not create all these without a true purpose; He explains His signs to those who understand.

In the succession of night and day, and in what Allah created in the heavens and earth, there truly are signs for those who ward off (evil).} (Yunus 10:5-6)

Time is a great blessing of Allah. It is also His blessing that He taught us the ways to calculate time and to know the number of months and years. Calculation of time is part of human civilization and culture. It helps us to keep track of time for our worship, work and life. It helps us to learn about the past and plan for the future.

Islam gives a lot of importance to time and reminds the believers to be conscious of time in their life. Islam does not emphasize only the calculation of time but it gives a lot of importance to quality of time. We should not only count time but also make our time countable.

A precious gift

Unfortunately we human beings waste a lot of our precious time. It is said that in a lifetime the average American spends about 184,000 hours (almost 21 years) watching television and/or surfing the internet. We also spend about 2-3 years’ time opening the junk mail or reading and deleting junk emails.

A wise man once asked, ‘What is the most valuable thing on earth for a human being? And what is the worst thing on earth for a human being?’ For both the answer he gave was, ‘Time.’ Everything in this world, he said, is acquired in time. By losing time we lose everything, even ourselves.

Allah Almighty reminds us in the Quran that in the movement of time and in the succession and variation (ikhtilaf) of the days and nights there are signs for those who wish to be mindful of Allah and grateful to Him (Al-Furqan 25:62).

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Each one of us has 24 hours every day at our disposal. There are those who use their time wisely and accomplish a lot. There are also those who waste their time.

Time is a non-renewable and non-replaceable resource. If you lose your money you may get it back; if you lose any of your possessions you may find them or replace them, but no one can get back the time that is gone.

Time in the Quran

Surat Al-`Asr is a very short Surah. It does not take much time to read it or to memorize it. However, it gives a very profound lesson and carries with it volumes of meanings. The whole human history is a witness to what is said in this Surah. Allah says,

{By the (passing) time, man is [deep] in loss, except for those who believe, do good deeds, urge one another to the truth, and urge one another to steadfastness.} (Al-`Asr 103)

In several other Surahs we are reminded about the passing nature of time and how important it is to pay attention to every day and night, nay to every moment. Allah says:

{By the daybreak, by the Ten Nights, by the even and the odd, by the passing night—is this oath strong enough for a person of reason?} (Al-Fajr 89:1-5)

{By the enshrouding night, by the radiant day, by His creation of male and female! The ways you take differ greatly.} (Al-Lail 92:1-4)

{By the morning hours and by the night when it grows still.} (AD-Duha 93:1-2)

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About Dr. Muzammil H. Siddiqi
Dr. Muzammil H. Siddiqi is the Chairman of the Fiqh Council of North America