Come to prayer, Come to success

With Allah’s permission, Salah (prayers) brings success in this life. That does not, however, mean to say that it removes from the next. Nope, that’s the thinking of the uninspired, the hopeless. Allah’s Mercy is so vast that it encompasses everybody in every sphere of life.

Now, how does one achieve this Mercy and make it a part of our lives? Well, we need to start with Salah, the second most important pillar in our deen.

Start building your khushoo right from the moment you begin taking wudhu! Having made your niyyah, fix your thoughts firmly in the direction of Jannah.

Rinsing your mouth? In your mind, plead with Allah to only allow you to consume the halal, to say what is good and lawful. Washing your face? Make du’aa that Allah only allows you to see that which is beneficial. Right arm? Pray that He enables you to receive your record on the Day of Judgment from this hand, insha’Allah, and so on.

Whilst in Salah, we ponder over Allah’s Greatness. This is in order that we’re humbled, so that we do not put our desires in front of that which pleases Him. One such hadith: The Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) said that,

(On the Day of Judgment) Allah will grasp the earth and fold up the heavens with His Right Hand and proclaim, ‘I Am the King! Where are the kings of the earth? Where are the tyrants? Where are the arrogant?’”  [Bukhari and Muslim]

We should pay close attention to the words that we recite in salah. Also, in sujud, ask Allah with no reserve and have full confidence that He can grant you anything, because nothing is impossible for Him! In Salah, one ought to truly realize that we’re communicating with Allah. No barrier in between, this is our time! From Sahih Muslim, we can extract the following:

Allah the Exalted said: I have divided prayer between Myself and My servant into two halves, and My servant shall have what he has asked for. When the servant says: Praise be to Allah Lord of the Worlds, Allah says: My servant has praised Me. And when he says: The Most Gracious, the Most Merciful, Allah says: My servant has extolled Me. And when he says: Master of the Day of Judgment, Allah says: My servant has glorified Me, – and on one occasion He said: My servant has submitted to My power. And when he says: You alone we worship, You alone we ask for help, Allah says: This is between Me and My servant, and My servant shall have what he has asked for. And when he says: Guide us to the straight path, the path of those whom you have favored, not those who went astray, Allah says: This is for My servant, and My servant shall have what he has asked for.

SubhanAllah! How much more beautified is your Salah when you start each rak’ah with this in mind?

Through experience, you would note that the time you leave between the adhan and your prayer is inversely proportional to your focus in Salah. That is, the more you delay your Salah, the less you’re likely to be able to concentrate on it properly.

Think of all that you have been blessed with throughout the day, and remind yourself that you owe Allah a lot more than a few minutes of concentration. Visualize yourself in front of Allah. Everywhere around you is space- pitch black, a vacuum. Just you and Him now. Dare your thoughts wander?

Also. to help yourself attain khushoo in Salah, gain knowledge on how to do so! Attend any courses on Salah, listen to lectures, read books, and the list goes on! In this day and age, nobody can claim ignorance anymore, what with technology making Islamic knowledge so easily available to us. Recite bits of the Quran that we’re not accustomed to reciting. That is, it’d be better if we diversified our surahs after the Fatihah than repeatedly recite those from the last page of the Quran over and over. This is because when the latter is carried out, one’s brain is detached from the wagging of their tongue, which is accustomed to reciting these verses thoughtlessly. Also, we should engage in continuous istighfar.

Lastly, khushoo is a state of being. If one were in a constant state of khushoo, always mindful of Allah and wary of their actions because He’s watching, it shouldn’t be too hard to keep from zoning out in prayer, insha’Allah.

May Allah purify our intentions, make us of those who offer Salah in a way that will be accepted and guide and forgive us in order that we may enter into Jannah with ease insha’Allah, ameen.

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