Reflections On Istighfar (To Have Duas Answered)

We have all pretty much heard about the above saying of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). A lot of us engage in daily dhikr (counting beads) through istighfar to have our duas answered. Even the Quran has numerous verses which talk about the benefits of asking for forgiveness- both worldly and for the hereafter.Benefits of istighfar are widespread all over the internet, alhamdulillah, in case you want to know more about it.
The idea is basically to have our sins forgiven. Most definitely the first way to do so is to do istighfar, verbally asking Allah to overlook our shortcomings. But thats not the only way. There are plenty of other deeds which forgive our sins as well. For eg, dua after eating, doing wudu, dua after leaving washroom, saying subhanAllah, alhamdulillah and allahu akbar 33 times each followed by la ilala illallahu…shayin qadeer once. ( I am skipping details because this post is really not about knowledge, please refer to more scholarly platforms for in depth knowledge of duas and dhikrs with their virtues.) 

So when we are tying our intention to do as much istighfar as possible so to have our doors opened, we should focus on all those things which forgive our sins, along with doing the istighfar per se. We will notice so many mundane things we do already contain the virtue of having sins forgiven, we just need to have the intention and presence of mind. Every good that we do, we can make the intention to have some of our sins forgiven for that. 

Therefore, if you are looking to do lots of istighfar, look out for all the deeds which have the reward of having sins forgiven. You should get them in the books of hadith or other scholarly resources, inshaAllah.

This post is actually inspired from a lecture of Mufti Menk. 

Take the good that you get, and leave the rest to collect dust.

A Grace Extraordinary: Ar Razzaq (The Provider)

Allah sustains us by means  in ways we sometimes fail to understand.

Commonly misunderstood, rizq (provision/sustenance) does not only include jobs or wealth. Our families, friends, health etc are our provision.
I would argue that the love and support, hope and faith, that we receive during hardship are provisions too. Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said about his wife Khadija RA that “ruziqtu hubaha”, i.e “I was sustained through her love”. It was her love that Allah chose to sustain the Prophet (peace be upon him) when they both underwent the transition into his prophethood.

Its a different blessing when love becomes a provision. Together or apart, you learnt to love through dua. Every prayer, every act of worship you perform, you have a hidden wish that perhaps this will be another addition to the witness of your love, another testimony to its truth. You reach a point where you love only through your worship, through your prayers, through your duas. It becomes such that loving the person becomes worshipping Allah. The joy you get out of those prayers becomes your sustenance. That nourishes you, cherishes you, keeps you alive, keeps you going.

It does not end here though. Prophet Yaqoob(Jacob) was sustained in his grief with his hope and profound faith in God, when reality and people failed him left and right.

More often that not, our provisions are found in the earth. They are found in wealth and prosperity (which is very important. There is no belittling of any of that).But sometimes though, even for some extremely ordinary people, extraordinary provisions come down, that is not from this world. Not because they are special, but because The One who sends them down is. You might not even be aware of it, but its there. It comes especially from the heavens, from right under The Throne. From Ar Razzaq-The Provider.

And if you were to count God’s favors, you would not be able to number them (Nahl :18)