Monday, June 14, 2010

::One should take heed from the regret felt in this world::

The life of this world is an important opportunity granted so that man can earn the perfect and eternal life of the Hereafter.

Those who do not make use of this opportunity and live a life far removed from the religion of Islam will regret every moment they spent in the world when they see the torment in the Hereafter. This is due to the fact that these people had been warned several times and been informed about the existence of the two abodes-Hell and Paradise. They had also been informed that their conduct would dictate which abode they would earn, just as the Prophet (saas) said, "The world is the farm of the Hereafter." (Ihya' al-ulum, iv, 14.)

Allah mercifully provides training for mankind about this feeling of regret in this world by stimulating one's thoughts and feelings through the experience of regret, so that he may avoid reaching this irreversible end. In addition, Allah gives people a certain amount of time so that they can purify themselves from their mistakes and flawed attitudes. During one's lifetime, every human being is offered the chance to repent and lead the rest of his life in the way of Allah.

Viewed from this point, the feeling of regret is actually a great opportunity that Allah grants to man. This is because after such deep regret, if one turns to Allah, Allah grants him eternal salvation in response to his sincerity. Conversely, if one heedlessly ignores these warnings and opportunities, then his punishment will be regret and grief that he will not be able to be saved unless Allah so wills it.

In the Qur'an, Allah illustrates various examples of people who regretted their mistakes. These feelings of regret urged a group of people to turn to Allah and saved them from repeating their mistake for the rest of their lives. Yet another group totally forgot about this regret in time, and out of recurring ignorance, returned to their former rebellious selves.

Allah informs us in the Qur'an of the regret experienced by the three people who did not take part in a battle during the lifetime of the Prophet Muhammad (saas) as an apposite example of repentance stemming from regret:

Allah has turned towards the Prophet, and those who fled (their homes) and the helpers who followed him at the "time of difficulty," after the hearts of a group of them had almost deviated. Then He turned towards them - He is All-Gentle, Most Merciful to them-and also towards the three who were left behind, so that when the earth became narrow for them, for all its great breadth, and their own selves became constricted for them and they realized that there was no refuge from Allah except in Him, He relented towards them so that they might repent. Allah is the Ever-Returning, the Most Merciful. (Surat at-Tawba: 117-118)

As we learn from the verses above, the three people who were left behind suffered a great regret in their hearts. Consequently, they realized that the only way to be saved from this regret was to repent and seek refuge in Allah. This is the sincere regret that mobilises people, changes them, and urges them to correct their mistakes. Such sincere people will lead a life in compliance with Allah's consent and hope for Allah's compassion and mercy. Allah informs us in the Qur'an that He surely accepts repentance from His servants and forgives them:

Except for those who repents and have faith and act rightly: Allah will transform the wrong actions of such people into good -Allah is Ever-Forgiving, Most Merciful - for certainly all who repents and act rightly have turned sincerely towards Allah. (Surat al-Furqan: 70-71)

But as for those who do evil actions and then subsequently repent and have faith, in that case your Lord is Ever-Forgiving, Most Merciful. (Surat al-Araf: 153)

But I am Ever-Forgiving to anyone who repents and has faith and acts rightly and then is guided. (Surah Ta Ha: 82)

It is also stated in the Qur'an that those nations to whom the prophets were sent regretted their wrong doings. Likewise, the people of the Prophet Musa who couldn't wait for him to return from Mount Sinai with Allah's message forgot Allah and reverted to idol-worship. Allah describes this nation's great regret for their sin as follows:
After he left, Musa's people adopted a calf made from their ornaments, a form which made a lowing sound. Did they not see that it could not speak to them or guide them to any way? They adopted it and so they were wrongdoers.

When they took full stock of what they had done and saw they had been misled, they said, "If our Lord does not have mercy on us and forgive us, we will certainly be among the lost." (Surat al-Araf: 148-149)

Allah emphasizes regret once again in the Qur'an in the story of the owners of the garden. Allah granted them a garden as a favor. However, they grew arrogant, appropriated the garden for themselves, and forgot to be grateful to Allah. Hence the punishment they received caused them to regret their actions and turn towards Allah. The verses concerning the owners of the garden as follows:
We have tried them as We tried the owners of the garden when they swore that they would harvest in the morning but did not say the redeeming words, "If Allah wills." So a visitation from your Lord came upon it while they slept and in the morning it was like burnt land stripped bare. In the morning they called out to one another, "Leave early for your land if you want to pick the fruit." So they set off, quietly saying to one another, "Do not let any poor man into it today while you are there." They left early, intent on carrying out their scheme.

But when they saw it, they said, "We must have lost our way. No, the truth is we are destitute!" The best of them said, "Did I not say to you, why do you not glorify Allah?" They said, "Glory be to our Lord! Truly we have been wrongdoers." They turned to face each other in mutual accusation. They said, "Woe to us! We were indeed inordinate. Maybe our Lord will give us something better than it in exchange. We entreat our Lord." (Surat al-Qalam: 17-32)

But when the conditions change or they are given a new chance, most people forget the warning, which is supposed to make them regret, repent and encourage them to do good deeds. Those who ignore the warnings and return to their former attitudes will surely be punished unless they repent in time as was the case with Thamud, the people of the Prophet Salih. These people blatantly rejected the warnings of the Prophet Salih, although they knew that they would regret their inevitable doom. Surely Allah will never break His promise in bringing forth His command. Allah informs us of this fact, which will be a lesson for all people in the Qur'an:

He said, "Here is a she-camel. She has a time for drinking and you have a time for drinking-on specified days. Do not do anything to harm her or the punishment of a terrible day will come down on you." But they hamstrung her and woke up full of remorse, for the punishment did come down them. There is certainly a Sign in that, yet most of them are not believers. Truly your Lord is the Almighty, the Most Merciful. (Surat ash-Shu'ara: 155-159)

One has to remember that Allah is just. He does not leave any fault unanswered; yet He also generously rewards the good deeds done for Him. He gives glad tidings of His mercy and Paradise to those who turn towards Him with sincere repentance. Considering these, one should ask oneself the following: being aware of the intense trouble a temporary regret causes in this world, is it worth taking the risk of a regret that may last forever? Not to forget that this will be the regret one would suffer in the never-ending afterlife in Hell...
Surely, nobody would risk feeling such regret in the Hereafter. In this case, what one has to do is apparent: every single person in this world still has the time to seize this opportunity. The one who capitalizes on this favor of Allah will not only be saved from the fire but will also be the heir of the blessings of this world and the eternal Hereafter.
Therefore, every person who endeavors to attain these blessings and avoid the regret of the Companions of the Fire needs to devote himself to earning the pleasure of Allah. One needs to unconditionally follow the route bringing man out of darkness into light. Allah lays down this route in the following verses:

It is He Who calls down blessing on you, as do His angels, to bring you out of the darkness into the light. He is Most Merciful to the believers. Their greeting on the Day they meet Him will be "Peace!" and He has prepared a generous reward for them. (Surat al-Ahzab: 43-44)

*tomorrow, exam akidah islamiyah...i hope,i can do it,insyaAllah...wish me gudluck...^^

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