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The Path to Ease

Recently, I was on a trip into Central Europe. I had gone to the capital of the Czech Republic, Prague.

There was a cable car that usually takes people up to the top of a mountain to get the best of views of the city. However, the day I went, there was no cable car. It was under maintenance and would not be open for a week.

I was disappointed. However, I looked up at the hill, and thought, “I guess this will be possible to climb.” I started taking that long trek uphill. It was hard, and long. It took me a good hour to reach to the top of the hill and then go up an observation tower. It was very difficult, but once I saw the view, the skyline, the clouds and the city down below, I felt that it was totally worth it.

Similar is our life and especially our striving for success in terms of our religion. In the beginning it is very difficult. And in fact, it is very similar to a mountain path. In chapter Al-Balad, Allah instructs the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), and the believers during a time of great difficulty to {climb the mountain pass.} (Quran 90:11)

Allah explains later in the chapter that climbing the mountain pass (or Aqabah in Arabic) is symbolic for feeding the poor in a time of need, sheltering the orphan, helping the needy etc.

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These were all mentioned in a chapter that started with the mention of the Prophet being declared as someone who could be killed by the Quraysh. This was hard work. And yet, that is exactly what Allah asked- help the poor, the needy, the downtrodden, the orphan of the very nation that seeks your blood. It was a powerful message and was set in stone for eternity.

Don’t Give Up

Alhamdulillah that our trials in this life are not as dangerous. However, for all of us as well it is about taking that mountain pass.

So when we feel like giving up, we need to do more good deeds. When we feel as if things are just not going well, we need to make more du’a. When we feel that we are short on money, we need to give a bit of charity to bring barakah (blessing) in our wealth. It seems counterintuitive, but we do it simply because we trust in Allah and put Him above all else. As Imam Ibn al-Qayyim said:

“The path always starts with trials and tribulations. Then comes a period of patience and reliance upon Allah. And the end is enlightenment, guidance and victory.”

When we decide to take a path towards Allah, there will always be trials and tribulations. This could be in the form of hardships and difficulties that make us want to give up. Or more importantly, it could be in terms of luxuries and ease that make us slack off and not take our duties seriously.

Part of our faith is that we try our best and be patient through that time and rely upon Allah for His help and guidance to take us through.

It is a very difficult journey, and many of us will falter along the way. It is at this time that we should remind ourselves of the promises of Allah.

The promises of the One who created everything in existence are not empty promises. So why shouldn’t we be patient when Allah has promised:

{Most certainly Allah is with the patient} (Quran 2:153)

And why can’t we rely upon Him when He has said:

{And whoever relies upon Allah, He is sufficient for them} (Quran 65:3)

And can we give upon the immense reward when He said:

{For the patient will be paradise without accounting} (Quran 39:10)

Whether it is waking up for Fajr every day, or starting to wear hijab, or going through a difficulty, every path starts off with trials and tribulations.

And it is then that we need to be patient and rely upon the Lord of the heavens and the earth. And it is through that when we will see enlightenment, guidance and victory.

We ask Allah to help make our paths easy, and to give us understanding during times of patience.

(From Discovering Islam archive)

About Raiiq Ridwan
Raiiq Ridwan is a Bangladeshi medical student at the University of Bristol, UK. He has a Bachelors In Arts in Islamic Studies at the Islamic Online University. He is founder of "The One Message". He’s certified life coach. He can write on topics related to Quran, dawah, depression, anxiety, achieving goals, productivity etc.