Imagine you are travelling and stopping by a village, knowing your destination is elsewhere. Would it make sense to stay, get distracted by all the village has to offer and then realizing time is up to prepare for the rest of the journey, leaving you empty handed and full of regret?
Believing in what we can’t see takes trust and conviction and this is what Allah, the Creator of the Seen and Unseen, rewards in the believer. But belief in the Day of Resurrection also helps you right now. It gives meaning and purpose to your brief stay in this temporary world. It aids you to understand why certain things happen, like birth, death, suffering and even why some can commit the worst crimes, seemingly without being punished.
Let’s go back to basics, in this fast-moving world, full of distractions, which in reality is the village you are stopping by, before moving on to your final destination. Let’s discover 4 lessons from the first part of Surah An-Naba, the Announcement, to revive our faith and get into action with four highly rewarding, daily supplications.
1. Make preparation for the Day of Standing part of your daily routine with this dhikr.
In the first five Ayaat, Allah, the Most High, starts with some powerful questioning and repeated statements:
“About what are they asking one another? About the great news. About which they are in disagreement. No, they will come to know! No, again, they will come to know!” [Qur’an, 78: 1-5]
This is not just meant for those disbelievers who denied the Resurrection. It is meant for us too. Even though we know we will be brought to account one day, does our behaviour show this? Do we daily think of standing in front of Allah, Al-Haseeb, the Reckoner?
Abu Sa’id al-Khudri reported Allah’s Messenger ﷺ as saying that the earth would turn to be one single bread on the Day of Resurrection, and the Almighty would turn it in His hand as one of you turns a loaf while on a journey. It would be a feast arranged in the honour of the people of Paradise. He (the narrator) further narrated that a person from among the Jews came and he said: Abu al-Qasim, may the Compassionate Lord be pleased with you! May I inform you about the feast arranged in honour of the people of Paradise on the Day of Resurrection? He said: Do it, of course. He said: The earth would become one single bread. Then Allah’s Messenger ﷺ looked towards us and laughed until his molar teeth became visible. He then again said: May I inform you about that with which they would season it? He said: Do it, of course. He said: Their seasoning would be balim and fish. The Companions of the Holy Prophet ﷺ said: What is this balam? He said: Ox and fish from whose excessive livers seventy thousand people would be able to eat. [Muslim: 2792]
Say with love and conviction throughout your day: SubhanAllahi wa bihamdih – Whoever recites this one hundred times in the morning and evening, will not be surpassed on the Day of Resurrection by anyone having done better than this except for someone who had recited it more. [Muslim]
Ask Allah, the Most High to give you ability and inspire others!
2. Reflect on the creation daily with this supplication.
In Ayaat 6 till 8 and 12 till 16 of Surah An-Naba, Allah Al-Khaliq, the Creator, continues His powerful questioning, demonstrating His perfect ability to create mind-blowing things:
Have We not made the earth as a bed, And the mountains as pegs? And We have created you in pairs. [Qur’an, 78:6-8]
And constructed above you seven strong (heavens). And made [therein] a burning lamp. And sent down from the rain clouds, pouring water. That We may bring forth thereby grain and vegetation. And gardens of entwined growth. [Qur’an, 78:12-16]
This is proof of His power to create from nothing and His ability to easily bring life to the dead. Do you reflect on the way Allah, the Most High, created huge creations to make our lives easy? The earth, the sun, the moon, the oceans, the mountains, and the sky. He, the Most High, mentions the earth to be as a bed or Mihaad, a place where you can find tranquillity and comfort. Imagine the entire earth was rock hard or too soft, not to be walked upon, nor cultivate.
Learn and use this highly rewarding supplication as part of your daily routine. Juwairiyah (radiyaAllahu ‘anha) reported that one day the Prophet ﷺ left her apartment in the morning as she was busy observing her dawn prayer in her place of worship. He came back in the forenoon, and she was still sitting there. The Prophet ﷺ said to her, “You have been in the same place since I left you?” She said, “Yes.” Thereupon the Prophet ﷺ said, “I recited four words three times after I left you and if these were to be weighed against what you have recited since morning these would outweigh them, and these words are:
سُبْحـانَ اللهِ وَبِحَمْـدِهِ، عَدَدَ خَلْـقِه وَرِضـا نَفْسِـه، وَزِنَـةَ عَـرْشِـه، وَمِـدادَ كَلِمـاتِـه
Subhaanallaahi wa bihamdihi: ‘Adada khalqihi wa ridhaa nafsihi, wa zinata ‘arshihi wa midaada kalimaatihi.
(Glory is to Allah and praise is to Him, by the multitude of his creation, by His Pleasure, by the weight of His Throne, and by the extent of His Words. [Muslim] (Recite 3 times in Arabic)
3. Make your sleep a time of worship.
In Ayaat 9 till 11 of Surah An-Naba, Allah, the Most High, mentions:
And We made your sleep [a means for] rest. And made the night as clothing, And made the day for livelihood.
“Nawm” refers to sleep and “Subaat” literally means something which cuts off. The night is something that ‘cuts us off’; it cuts us off from our daily business, family, work etc. It also cuts us off from our body, as your soul temporary leaves your body while asleep, hence it’s called ‘minor death’. And this can all be linked to the Resurrection; you’ll be cut off from others, you’ll run away from your family. And the sleep that overcomes us, is just another daily example of how Allah’s power overcomes us, whether we believe or not.
Consciously, choose to turn your sleep into worship and gain rewards you might have missed out on for years, even decades. Revive the “Sunan” of sleep, by making an intention before you go sleep to rest in order to be able to do more good deeds the next day. Recite the recommended portions of the Qur’an (like Surah al-Ikhlas, Surah al-Falaq, Surah an-Naas, Ayatul-Kursi, the last two Ayaat of Surah al-Baqarah, Surah al-Mulk, and Surah as-Sajdah etc). Try to start with a minimum and slowly add portions in your routine.
Treat the Sunnah supplications before sleeping as a priority! Make sure to say BismikaAllahumma amootu wa ahyaa (in Your Name, O Allah, I die and I live) [Al-Bukhari, Muslim], and Allahumma qinee ‘adhaabaka yawma tab’athu ‘ibaadak (O Allah, save me from Your Punishment on the Day You resurrect Your slaves. [Abu Dawud, At-Tirmidhi]
For more Sunnah supplications see The Fortress of the Muslim.
4. Beg for ability to see the truth as truth and to follow it.
After discussing the power of Allah, and different proofs of resurrection, Allah the Most High, describes details of the Day of Standing:
Verily, the Day of Decision is a fixed time. The Day when the Trumpet will be blown and you shall come forth in crowds (groups). [Qur’an 78: 17-18]
Another name of the Day of Judgement is Yawm ul Fasl, a day of separation. On this day, truth will be separated from falsehood. This teaches us an important lesson in a time many people commit evil acts and do some good and justify their deviance, saying they’re also doing some good. Or how certain Qur’anic commands are mixed with desires and taken as guidance. Truth and falsehood are being mixed. On this Great Day, Allah, the Most High, will separate the believers and disbelievers and decide on the people of paradise and the people of the fire.
Use the comprehensive supplication of Umar, may Allah be pleased with him:
اللَّهُمَّ أَرِنِي الْحَقَّ حَقًّا وَوَفِّقْنِي لِاتِّبَاعِهِ وَأَرِنِي الْبَاطِلَ بَاطِلًا وَوَفِّقْنِي لِاجْتِنَابِهِ – Allahumma aarinee al-haqqa wa waffiqnee lit-tibaa’ihi, wa aarinee al-baaTila baaTilan wa waffiqnee lijtinaabih (O Allah, show me the truth as truth and guide me to follow it, and show me the false as false and guide me to avoid it) [Sharḥ Muntahá al-Irādāt]
Praying you will benefit,
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Khawlah b. Yahya – United Kingdom
Khawlah b. Yahya founded SISTERS’ PROJECT in 2008, a United Kingdom based women’s support organization, the creative community lead in an art gallery and is a writer for different Islamic organizations and academies. She authored the renown How to Live by the Names of Allah Series, published by the Understand Qur’an Academy, as well as the internationally shared Revive a Sunnah Series. She focuses most of her work on how to translate classic Islamic Knowledge to daily life action. She recently released Personal Lessons from the Qur’an, in which daily life action points are based on Qur’anic Ayaat in a way that’s never seen before. You can purchase the E-book on: understandquran.com/product/personal-lessons-from-the-quran/