Formula for Success

IMFS(D&A) = 7(S + T)

D&A = for Dunya (this life) and Akhirah (eternal life)

S =

Salah (prayer) – As Allah (Glorified and Exalted be He) says in the Qur’an:

ٱتۡلُ مَآ أُوحِىَ إِلَيۡكَ مِنَ ٱلۡكِتَـٰبِ وَأَقِمِ ٱلصَّلَوٰةَ‌ۖ إِنَّ ٱلصَّلَوٰةَ تَنۡهَىٰ عَنِ ٱلۡفَحۡشَآءِ وَٱلۡمُنكَرِ‌ۗ وَلَذِكۡرُ ٱللَّهِ أَڪۡبَرُ‌ۗ وَٱللَّهُ يَعۡلَمُ مَا تَصۡنَعُونَ

“Recite, [O Muhammad], what has been revealed to you of the Book and establish prayer. Indeed, prayer prohibits immorality and wrongdoing, and the remembrance of Allah is greater. And Allah knows that which you do.” [Qur’an; 29:45]

 

Siyam (fasting)

يَـٰٓأَيُّهَا ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ كُتِبَ عَلَيۡڪُمُ ٱلصِّيَامُ كَمَا كُتِبَ عَلَى ٱلَّذِينَ مِن قَبۡلِڪُمۡ لَعَلَّكُمۡ تَتَّقُونَ

“O you who have believed, decreed upon you is fasting as it was decreed upon those before you that you may become righteous.” [Qur’an; 2:183]

 

Narrated Abu Huraira: The Prophet (peace be upon him said) said, “(Allah said), ‘Every good deed of Adam’s son is for him except fasting; it is for Me. and I shall reward (the fasting person) for it.’ Verily, the smell of the mouth of a fasting person is better to Allah than the smell of musk.” [Sahih Bukhari]

 

Sabr (patience) – This can be translated as patience, persistence, perseverance, commitment, consistence, countenance and endurance. Allah (Glorified and Exalted be He) tells us in the Qur’an:

وَلَنَبۡلُوَنَّكُم بِشَىۡءٍ۬ مِّنَ ٱلۡخَوۡفِ وَٱلۡجُوعِ وَنَقۡصٍ۬ مِّنَ ٱلۡأَمۡوَٲلِ وَٱلۡأَنفُسِ وَٱلثَّمَرَٲتِ‌ۗ وَبَشِّرِ ٱلصَّـٰبِرِينَ / لَّذِينَ إِذَآ أَصَـٰبَتۡهُم مُّصِيبَةٌ۬ قَالُوٓاْ إِنَّا لِلَّهِ وَإِنَّآ إِلَيۡهِ رَٲجِعُونَ / أُوْلَـٰٓٮِٕكَ عَلَيۡہِمۡ صَلَوَٲتٌ۬ مِّن رَّبِّهِمۡ وَرَحۡمَةٌ۬‌ۖ وَأُوْلَـٰٓٮِٕكَ هُمُ ٱلۡمُهۡتَدُونَ

“And We will surely test you with something of fear and hunger and a loss of wealth and lives and fruits, but give good tidings to the patient, Who, when disaster strikes them, say, “Indeed we belong to Allah , and indeed to Him we will return.” Those are the ones upon whom are blessings from their Lord and mercy. And it is those who are the [rightly] guided.” [Qur’an; 2:155-157]

وَٱسۡتَعِينُواْ بِٱلصَّبۡرِ وَٱلصَّلَوٰةِ‌ۚ وَإِنَّہَا لَكَبِيرَةٌ إِلَّا عَلَى ٱلۡخَـٰشِعِينَ

“And seek help through patience and prayer, and indeed, it is difficult except for the humbly submissive [to Allah]” [Qur’an; 2:45]

Ibn al-Qayyim al-Jawziyya stated in Al-Fawaa’id (page 139) that, “Patience in resisting desires is easier than patience in dealing with the consequences that result from going along with desires, because it either leads to pain and punishment or it prevents a more complete pleasure, . . . or it deprives one of a blessing, having which is more pleasurable and better than fulfilling desires, or it cuts off an oncoming blessing, or it has a negative impact on one’s character that will remain, because deeds have a great impact on one’s character and behavior.”

 

Shukr (gratitude)

وَمَا ڪَانَ لِنَفۡسٍ أَن تَمُوتَ إِلَّا بِإِذۡنِ ٱللَّهِ كِتَـٰبً۬ا مُّؤَجَّلاً۬‌ۗ وَمَن يُرِدۡ ثَوَابَ ٱلدُّنۡيَا نُؤۡتِهِۦ مِنۡہَا وَمَن يُرِدۡ ثَوَابَ ٱلۡأَخِرَةِ نُؤۡتِهِۦ مِنۡہَا‌ۚ وَسَنَجۡزِى ٱلشَّـٰكِرِينَ

“And it is not [possible] for one to die except by permission of Allah at a decree determined. And whoever desires the reward of this world – We will give him thereof; and whoever desires the reward of the Hereafter – We will give him thereof. And we will reward the grateful.” [Qur’an; 3:145]

وَقَلِيلٌ۬ مِّنۡ عِبَادِىَ ٱلشَّكُورُ

“…And few of My servants are grateful.” [Qur’an; 34:13]

 

مَّا يَفۡعَلُ ٱللَّهُ بِعَذَابِڪُمۡ إِن شَكَرۡتُمۡ وَءَامَنتُمۡ‌ۚ وَكَانَ ٱللَّهُ شَاڪِرًا عَلِيمً۬ا

“What would Allah do with your punishment if you are grateful and believe? And ever is Allah Appreciative and Knowing.” [Qur’an; 4:147]

 

وَڪَذَٲلِكَ فَتَنَّا بَعۡضَہُم بِبَعۡضٍ۬ لِّيَقُولُوٓاْ أَهَـٰٓؤُلَآءِ مَنَّ ٱللَّهُ عَلَيۡهِم مِّنۢ بَيۡنِنَآ‌ۗ أَلَيۡسَ ٱللَّهُ بِأَعۡلَمَ بِٱلشَّـٰڪِرِينَ

“And thus We have tried some of them through others that the disbelievers might say, “Is it these whom Allah has favored among us?” Is not Allah most knowing of those who are grateful?” [Quran; 6:53]

 

إِنَّا هَدَيۡنَـٰهُ ٱلسَّبِيلَ إِمَّا شَاكِرً۬ا وَإِمَّا كَفُورًا

“Indeed, We guided him to the way, be he grateful or be he ungrateful.” [Qur’an; 76:3]

 

Sadaqah (charity) – Sadaqah encompasses all forms of giving, including zakah (obligatory giving for the purification of your own soul [not wealth]). As Muslims we believe that, “Every good deed is charity.” [Al-Bukhari].

We also learn from the hadith that, “Wealth is not diminished by giving (in charity). Allah augments the honour of one who forgives; and one who displays humility towards another seeking the Pleasure of Allah, Allah exalts him in ranks.” [Muslim]

“If you want to really live, you have to give – giving is living. The life of the prophets was all about giving. Martyrs (shuhada) give their life so they can live forever. That is why the prophets live until today–because they gave everything. Those who love selflessly give. Having more is giving more because when you give you live.”

The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, “Who among you considers the wealth of his heirs dearer to him than his own wealth?” They replied, “O Allah’s Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him)! There is none among us but loves his own wealth more.” The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, “So his wealth is whatever he spends (in Allah’s cause) during his life (on good deeds) while the wealth of his heirs is whatever he leaves after his death.” [Sahih Bukhari]

The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, “Giving in charity is an obligation upon every Muslim”. It was said (to him), “What about one who does not find (the means) to do so?” He (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, “Let him work with his hands, thus doing benefit to himself and give in charity.” It was said to him, “What if he does not have (the means) to do so?” He (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, “Then let him assist the needy, the aggrieved.” It was said, “What about if he cannot even do this?” He (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, “Then he should enjoin good.” He was asked, “What if he cannot do that?” The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, “He should then abstain from evil for verily, that is a charity from him”. [Bukhari and Muslim]

“Everyone of you will speak to his Rubb without an interpreter between them. He will look to his right side and will see only the deeds he had previously done; he will look to his left and will see only the deeds he had previously done, and he will look in front of him and will see nothing but Fire (of Hell) before his face. So protect yourselves from Fire (of Hell), even by giving half a date- fruit (in charity)”. [Bukhari and Muslim]

Shariah (Islamic law) – This refers to moral code and religious law – Islamic Law which deals with several topics including: crime, politics and economics, as well as personal matters such as sexual intercourse, hygiene, diet, prayer, everyday etiquette and fasting.

 

Sunnah – The sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) includes his specific words, habits, practices, and silent approvals. It addresses ways of life when dealing with friends, family and government. The sunnah is a source of Islamic law, second only to the Qur’an.

إِنَّ أَوۡلَى ٱلنَّاسِ بِإِبۡرَٲهِيمَ لَلَّذِينَ ٱتَّبَعُوهُ وَهَـٰذَا ٱلنَّبِىُّ وَٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ‌ۗ وَٱللَّهُ وَلِىُّ ٱلۡمُؤۡمِنِينَ

“Indeed, the most worthy of Abraham among the people are those who followed him [in submission to Allah] and this prophet, and those who believe [in his message]. And Allah is the ally of the believers.” [Qur’an; 3:68]

 

T =

Tawheed (belief in the oneness of God) – Tawhid meaning doctrine of “the oneness” of God; also transliterated as Tawheed and Tauheed) is the concept monotheism in Islam. It is the religion’s most fundamental concept and holds that God (Allah) is One (Al-ʾAḥad) and Single (Al-Wāḥid).

 

قُلۡ هُوَ ٱللَّهُ أَحَدٌ / ٱللَّهُ ٱلصَّمَدُ / لَمۡ يَلِدۡ وَلَمۡ يُولَدۡ / وَلَمۡ يَكُن لَّهُ ۥ ڪُفُوًا أَحَدٌ

“Say, ‘He is Allah, [who is] One, Allah, the Eternal Refuge. He neither begets nor is born, Nor is there to Him any equivalent.'” [Qur’an; 112:1-4]

The classical definition of tawhid was limited to declaring or preferring belief in one God and the unity of God. Although the monotheistic definition has persisted into modern Arabic, it is now more generally used to connote “unification, union, combination, fusion; standardization, regularization; consolidation, amalgamation, merger;”

The Qu’ran asserts the existence of a single and absolute truth that transcends the world; a unique, independent and indivisible being, who is independent of the entire creation. God, according to Islam, is a universal God, rather than a local, tribal, or parochial one—God is an absolute, who integrates all affirmative values and brooks no evil.

Tawhid constitutes the foremost article of the Muslim profession. The first part of the Shahada is the declaration of belief in the Oneness of God. To attribute divinity to a created entity, known as shirk, is an unpardonable sin according to the Qur’an. Muslims believe that the entirety of the Islamic teaching rests on the principle of Tawheed. There is an uncompromising monotheism at the heart of the Islamic beliefs, which is seen as distinguishing Islam from other major religions.

 

Tazkiya (purification of the soul, limbs and senses) – Evidences for the importance of this include the following:

هُوَ ٱلَّذِى بَعَثَ فِى ٱلۡأُمِّيِّـۧنَ رَسُولاً۬ مِّنۡہُمۡ يَتۡلُواْ عَلَيۡہِمۡ ءَايَـٰتِهِۦ وَيُزَكِّيہِمۡ وَيُعَلِّمُهُمُ ٱلۡكِتَـٰبَ وَٱلۡحِكۡمَةَ وَإِن كَانُواْ مِن قَبۡلُ لَفِى ضَلَـٰلٍ۬ مُّبِينٍ۬

“It is He who has sent among the unlettered a Messenger from themselves reciting to them His verses and purifying them and teaching them the Book and wisdom – although they were before in clear error” [Qur’an; 62:2]

 

وَٱلشَّمۡسِ وَضُحَٮٰهَا / وَٱلۡقَمَرِ إِذَا تَلَٮٰهَا / وَٱلنَّہَارِ إِذَا جَلَّٮٰهَا / وَٱلَّيۡلِ إِذَا يَغۡشَٮٰهَا / وَٱلسَّمَآءِ وَمَا بَنَٮٰهَا / وَٱلۡأَرۡضِ وَمَا طَحَٮٰهَا / وَنَفۡسٍ۬ وَمَا سَوَّٮٰهَا / فَأَلۡهَمَهَا فُجُورَهَا وَتَقۡوَٮٰهَا / قَدۡ أَفۡلَحَ مَن زَكَّٮٰهَا / وَقَدۡ خَابَ مَن دَسَّٮٰهَا

“By the sun and its brightness, and [by] the moon when it follows it, and [by] the day when it displays it, and [by] the night when it covers it, and [by] the sky and He who constructed it, and [by] the earth and He who spread it, and [by] the soul and He who proportioned it, and inspired it [with discernment of] its wickedness and its righteousness, He has succeeded who purifies it, and he has failed who instills it [with corruption].” [Qur’an; 91:1-10]

 

قُل لِّلۡمُؤۡمِنِينَ يَغُضُّواْ مِنۡ أَبۡصَـٰرِهِمۡ وَيَحۡفَظُواْ فُرُوجَهُمۡ‌ۚ ذَٲلِكَ أَزۡكَىٰ لَهُمۡ‌ۗ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ خَبِيرُۢ بِمَا يَصۡنَعُونَ

“Tell the believing men to reduce [some] of their vision and guard their private parts. That is purer for them. Indeed, Allah is Acquainted with what they do.” [Qur’an; 24:30]

 

“Beware, in the body there is a piece of flesh; if it is sound, the whole body is sound and if it is corrupt the whole body is corrupt, and hearken it is the heart.” [Sahih Muslim]

One of the keys to tazkiya is lowering the gaze (ghadd al-basr), which means restraining the gaze and not allowing it to wander or dwell upon anything. This includes refraining from looking at people’s ‘awrahs, which includes the beauty of a non-mahram woman.

Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah (may Allaah have mercy on him) said in Majmoo’ al-Fataawa (15/414): Allaah, may He be glorified and exalted, has enjoined us in His Book to lower the gaze, which is of two types: refraining from looking at ‘awrahs and refraining from looking at the site of desire. The former refers to a man refraining from looking at the ‘awrah of another person. The second refers to looking at uncovered parts of a non-mahram woman.

Just as lowering the gaze includes not looking at the ‘awrahs of other people and other haraam things, it also includes refraining from looking into people’s houses. A man’s house conceals his body just as his garments conceal him. Allaah has mentioned lowering the gaze and guarding one’s private parts after the verse about asking for permission to enter, because the house covers a person just as the clothes on his body do. Haraam kinds of looking include looking at ‘awrahs, which is of two types: the ‘awrah behind a garment and the ‘awrah behind doors.

Another form of restraining the gaze is refraining from looking at what people have of wealth, wives, children, worldly goods and so on.

The Prophet (peace be upon him) is reported to have said, “He who believes in Allah and the Last Day must either speak good or remain silent.” [Muslim]

It was narrated that Abu Musa said: “I said: ‘O Messenger of Allah, whose Islam is most virtuous?’ He said: ‘The one from whose tongue and hand the Muslims are safe.'” [Sunan an-Nasa’i]

 

يَـٰٓأَيُّہَا ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ ٱجۡتَنِبُواْ كَثِيرً۬ا مِّنَ ٱلظَّنِّ إِنَّ بَعۡضَ ٱلظَّنِّ إِثۡمٌ۬‌ۖ وَلَا تَجَسَّسُواْ وَلَا يَغۡتَب بَّعۡضُكُم بَعۡضًا‌ۚ أَيُحِبُّ أَحَدُڪُمۡ أَن يَأۡڪُلَ لَحۡمَ أَخِيهِ مَيۡتً۬ا فَكَرِهۡتُمُوهُ‌ۚ وَٱتَّقُواْ ٱللَّهَ‌ۚ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ تَوَّابٌ۬ رَّحِيمٌ۬

“O you who have believed, avoid much [negative] assumption. Indeed, some assumption is sin. And do not spy or backbite each other. Would one of you like to eat the flesh of his brother when dead? You would detest it. And fear Allah; indeed, Allah is Accepting of repentance and Merciful.” [Qur’an; 49:12]

 

Tawbah (repentance)

وَتُوبُوٓاْ إِلَى ٱللَّهِ جَمِيعًا أَيُّهَ ٱلۡمُؤۡمِنُونَ لَعَلَّكُمۡ تُفۡلِحُونَ

“And turn to Allah in repentance, all of you, O believers, that you might succeed.” [Qur’an; 24:31]

وَمَن لَّمۡ يَتُبۡ فَأُوْلَـٰٓٮِٕكَ هُمُ ٱلظَّـٰلِمُونَ

“And whoever does not repent – then it is those who are the wrongdoers.” [Qur’an; 49:11]

Narrated Anas bin Malik: Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) said, “If Adam’s son had a valley full of gold, he would like to have two valleys, for nothing fills his mouth except dust. And Allah forgives him who repents to Him.” [Sahih Bukhari]

Abu Ayyub Ansari reported that Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) said: If you were not to commit sins, Allah would have swept you out of existence and would have replaced you by another people who have committed sin, and then asked forgiveness from Allah, and He would have granted them pardon. [Sahih Muslim]

 

Taqwah (God-consciousness) – Abu Dharr said: “The Messenger of Allah said to me: ‘Have Taqwa of Allah wherever you are, and follow an evil deed with a good one to wipe it out, and treat the people with good behavior.” [Tirmidhi]

 

Tawakkul (trusting in God) – Perhaps one of the most comforting reminders of placing our trust in Allah can be found in the following ayah of the Quran:

مَن كَانَ يُؤۡمِنُ بِٱللَّهِ وَٱلۡيَوۡمِ ٱلۡأَخِرِ‌ۚ وَمَن يَتَّقِ ٱللَّهَ يَجۡعَل لَّهُ ۥ مَخۡرَجً۬ا / وَيَرۡزُقۡهُ مِنۡ حَيۡثُ لَا يَحۡتَسِبُ‌ۚ وَمَن يَتَوَكَّلۡ عَلَى ٱللَّهِ فَهُوَ حَسۡبُهُ ۥۤ‌ۚ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ بَـٰلِغُ أَمۡرِهِ

“And whoever fears Allah – He will make for him a way out, 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.” [Qur’an; 65:2-3]

Umar bin Al-Khattab (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, “If you were to rely upon Allah with the required reliance, then He would provide for you just as a bird is provided for, it goes out in the morning empty, and returns full.” [Tirmidhi]

Tasbih (extolling God) – Tasbih is a form of dhikr (remembrance) that involves the repetitive utterances of short sentences glorifying God, in Islam.

يَـٰٓأَيُّہَا ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ ٱذۡكُرُواْ ٱللَّهَ ذِكۡرً۬ا كَثِيرً۬ا

“O you who have believed, remember Allah with much remembrance” [Qur’an; 33:41]

 

It was narrated from Abu Hurairah that: the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) passed by him when he was planting a plant, and said: “O Abu Hurairah, what are you planting?” I said: “A plant for me.” He said: “Shall I not tell you of a plant that is better than this?” He said: “Of course, O Messenger of Allah.” He said: “Say: ‘Subhan-Allah, wal-hamdu-lillah, wa la ilaha illallah, wa Allahu Akbar (Glory is to Allah, praise is to Allah, none has the right to be worshiped but Allah and Allah is the Most Great.)’ For each one a tree will be planted for you in Paradise.” [Sunan Ibn Majah]

Similarly, there are various remembrances that are easy on the tongue and high in virtue. These can be easily incorporated into one’s day so that reward is being reaped throughout day-to-day activities.

 

Tilawat (recitation of Qur’an)

وَٱتۡلُ مَآ أُوحِىَ إِلَيۡكَ مِن ڪِتَابِ رَبِّكَ‌ۖ لَا مُبَدِّلَ لِكَلِمَـٰتِهِۦ وَلَن تَجِدَ مِن دُونِهِۦ مُلۡتَحَدً۬ا

“And recite, [O Muhammad], what has been revealed to you of the Book of your Lord. There is no changer of His words, and never will you find in other than Him a refuge.” [Qur’an; 18:27]

 

Further Resources

The Blessings and Benefits of Fajr Prayer in Islam

Various recitations (qira’ats) of the Qur’an: Shaykh Dr. Yasir Qadhi