By Raiiq Ridwan

In human life, there is joy, and then there is pain. There is hardship and then there is ease. There is happiness as well as sadness. That is almost inevitable regardless of the circumstances of life, and regardless of our socioeconomic status. While, the pain of hardship might vary from person to person, and different people are tested in different ways, everyone can agree with this- going through a painful time is not easy. It is mentally and emotionally draining to go through painful times and live through them. However, there are ways in which we can turn the corner, and make a change. And as Muslims, we believe that Allah is always there for us, and that He is al-Baasit, the One who expands our lives when it gets constricted and removes all constrictions in our lives. So, what really is the highway out of suffering? And is there a highway?

Surah of Greatest Pain

In Surah 65, Allah talks about divorce, and the rulings pertaining to divorce. Anyone who has gone through a divorce, or helped anyone else who has gone through a divorce knows how painful it is. It is devastating mentally, and in fact so harsh on the people involved that it turns them into different people. It is almost like Dementors in Harry Potter, something that sucks happiness out of life. And in these hard times, when nothing is looking up, at times we are tempted to do something wrong. People tend to want to take revenge on the one who initially wronged them, people might do haram just to get something for themselves, and moreover, some people even get involved in shirk by doing black magic and going to fortune-tellers! It is in these times that Allah says,

وَمَن يَتَّقِ اللَّهَ يَجْعَل لَّهُ مَخْرَجًا

And whosoever is conscious of Allah, He will make for them a way out” [Quran 65:2]

Allah exhorts us to be conscious of Him. We are reminded in the worst of times that Allah is still there. Allah is still watching, and Allah is all capable of doing whatever He pleases. Pain, no matter how bad, is not enough of an excuse to disobey Allah and do that which is wrong. Remembering Allah in these times, and to be conscious of Him, is that which will help us make a way out. When you are struggling to find a job, it might be easier to bend the rules and work in an interest-based bank. When your wife wants to leave you, you might want to use brute force and anger at times to hold them back. When stuck in various situations, we might be tempted to bribe people to get out of the tight spot. At times, we may be willing to do something that is not so ethically correct, just to get ourselves out of the tight spot. However, in this time, it is worth remembering that the promise of Allah is for the one who has taqwa. And for Him the promise is simple- Allah, from above the seven heavens, the Owner of the Mighty Throne, and the Controller of all that exists, will make a way out. And Allah always fulfils His promise. However, we might have a hard time believing in this, especially during hard times, and thus Allah continues in the Surah,

وَيَرْزُقْهُ مِنْ حَيْثُ لَا يَحْتَسِبُ ۚ وَمَن يَتَوَكَّلْ عَلَى اللَّهِ فَهُوَ حَسْبُهُ ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ بَالِغُ أَمْرِهِ ۚ قَدْ جَعَلَ اللَّهُ لِكُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدْرًا

And will provide for him from where he does not expect. And whoever relies upon Allah – then He is sufficient for him. Indeed, Allah will accomplish His purpose. Allah has already set for everything a [decreed] extent.” [Quran 65:3]

Allah will not only make a way out for the person, but also make provisions, Rizq, from places that the person has never imagined possible. All sounds pretty impossible during tough times doesn’t it? That is why Allah makes a point to say that whoever trusts in Allah, Allah is sufficient for him. The problem with our understanding of life is that we tend to put our trust in the means, instead of the Creator of the means. When we do random daily activities, we tend to forget that it is Allah who allows things to happen, and it is only by His Might and His Power that anything can happen on earth. When we cut onions in the kitchen, we tend to think that the knife is that which is cutting the onion. Yet, when Ibrahim alayhi salam put the knife to the throat of his child, the knife didn’t cut, because Allah didn’t allow it to. When there is a bonfire, we think it is the fire that is burning the different things. However, the fire didn’t burn Ibrahim when he was thrown into it. At the end of the day, all the harm that is done to us, and the ones who might be the cause of that harm are all still the creation of Allah, and Allah has all power over everything. And if we are to be conscious of Him, and strive away from that which is filthy and forbidden, Allah will make a way out for us and provide for us from sources we never imagined. And if we are to truly put our trust in Him, then He would suffice, just as He has done all our lives. The verse continues to say that Allah will finish His purpose and His command, and at the end of the day nothing can override that, and that Allah has set a decree for everything. For our pain, for our suffering, Allah has a plan. He has a plan and He will accomplish it, and He has fixed a time for it as well, meaning that our suffering is not going to be everlasting either. Be conscious of Allah and fear Him, and He will provide for you and make a way out for you. Trust Him and He will suffice. And nothing in this world is everlasting anyway, so don’t worry the Best of Planners has a plan, and your pain will come to an end- that is the Highway out of Suffering

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