by Raiiq Ridwan
A mantra in the ancient Sanskrit language means a thought behind a speech or an action. It has come to be used in the English language for slogans or quotes that are oft-repeated. In this article, we will look at mantras as quotes from the Quran which help inspire us in times of desperation, need or helplessness. These are the five thoughts from five ayat of the Quran that we can turn to in times of need.
1. Seek help in patience and prayer [Quran 2:45]
The first comes from the longest Surah in the Quran. It is one of the most essential pieces of information that we need in our life. When the going gets tough, the solution is simple- patience and prayer!
Patience is one of the greatest of human virtues. It is something that is of honour in every culture, society and faith. In fact in the Quran, the patient ones have been mentioned as those who “are given their reward without any accounting” [Quran 39:10]. And also, “Most certainly, Allah is with the patient.” [Quran 2:153]
The way to have Allah on our side is to have patience, and while it is tough, the rewards are massive, and in sha Allah when we go through the other 4 mantras, being patient will mean so much more!
What is patience? This is what Shaykh Abu Aaliyah Sukheel Shareef said about it, “Patience isn’t passive resignation. Neither is it a refusal to act responsibly because of our fears, our grief, or because of the seemingly unsurmountable hurdles. Rather, patience is active waiting. It is enduring something, along with doing all that we can – acting, hoping, exercising faith, bearing hardships with endurance, stoicism and fortitude; even when the hopes of our heart are delayed. But patience is not just enduring; it is enduring well: For me, beautiful patience is most fitting. [12:18]”
The first bit of advice is patience, an active state of mind. The second bit of advice is more practical, prayer, and it is that which helps us in exercising that patience. Prayer is the steering wheel of life. It helps our intended destination of paradise.
From the practice of the early Muslims, it is clear that prayer was for them a heightened state of mind where they found solace. In fact, whenever the Prophet would feel anxious, or restless, he would hasten to pray.
It is a gift from Allah from above the seven heavens, as something that is there to help ease our lives. Prayer is the connection which separates us from our problems, and connects us with the Lord of all our problems.
2. O My slaves who have sinned excessively, despair not of the Mercy of Allah [Quran 39:53]
In times of helplessness, Shaytan takes the ultimate cheap shot when we are already down. He reminds us of our shortcomings, of our sins, and somehow convinces us that “we do not deserve the help of Allah anyway”, and so we might as well go on disobeying Him over and over again! No! Never let Shaytan get into your head like that!
This second mantra reminds us of two things, that even when you have sinned excessively, you are still a slave to Allah. And even if you have messed up a hundred, or a thousand times over, the doors to His Mercy are open. The doors to His Mercy are open for the worst of sinners, why will it not be for you?
How can it be that a few months of hardship has made you lose hope in Him and His mercy? Never lose mercy in the One who is ar-Rahman, the Excessively Merciful, ar-Raheem, the Especially Merciful, al-Ghaafir, the Forgiver of sins, at-Tawwab, the Acceptor of Repentance!
When the going gets tough, remember the Mercy of Allah. Never lose hope.
3. Call on Me, I will respond [Quran 40:60]
The third mantra goes on from the previous two mantras. Part of being patient is having hope in Allah’s Mercy and plan, and to help that patience we pray salah and seek His help. And the reason we pray, is because we believe Allah is listening to us.
And Allah says in this mantra of ours to call on Him and that He will respond! He is al-Mujeeb, the Responder! He is there and willing to respond whenever it is that we want Him to. While you are being patient, while you are praying and remembering the mercy of Allah, make dua, and ask Him for His bounty.
Dua is from the Sunnah of all our Prophets, peace be upon them all. It is a connection between us and Allah, and we are all in desperate need of Allah’s help. It is our ultimate weapon against anything and anyone standing in front of us. It is the ultimate resource of the believer! Use it!
4. Whoever puts His trust in Allah, He will be sufficient for Him [Quran 65:3]
When we are being patient, trying to remember His mercy, praying and supplicating for the removal of our burden, it is easy to lose it at times! It is hard to see light at the end of the tunnel when we are enveloped by darkness. It is in these times that we need to remember, that Allah is sufficient for us.
The world may desert us, even our own convictions may desert us, but if we can truly put our trust in Allah, He will suffice. He sufficed us when we were in our mothers’ wombs with no other form of support or structure other than His Mercy, and He will suffice us again.
Remember the mantra, and put your trust in Allah. He owns whatever it is that we want, and He owns whatever it is that we are going through, and through it all, there is a plan. All of this is part of Allah writing your story. Be patient and keep the trust.
5. Say: He is Allah, the One and only [Quran 112:1]
And while we are talking about being patient, praying a lot, not losing hope, making dua, we might sometimes forget the big picture. Why go through all of this anyway? Why make the struggle? Why accept it all?
Because we are doing it for Him, and He is the One and only. He is the only One worthy of our worship. He is the only One worthy of our undivided love. He is the only One who can solve our troubles, and He is the only One who is in control. It is reminding ourselves through a Surah we all know of who Allah is.
Know Allah, and you will know the way out. And if you do not, then know that He will let you know!