أعوذ بالله من الشيطان الرجيم

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Ayat 60, Surah Al-Mumin:

And your Lord has said, “Call Me, I will respond to you. Definitely those who show arrogance against worshipping Me shall enter Jahannam, disgraced. 40:60. 

Literally, du’a means to call, and it is frequently used to call for something needed. On occasions, the dhikr of Allah (acts devoted to His remembrance) is also referred to as du’a. This verse confers a special honor on the large community of the followers of the Holy Prophet SAW when they were ordered to make du’a with the assurance that it would be answered. And whoever does not make a prayer has been warned of punishment. 

Qatadah reports from Ka’b Ahbar that earlier this used to be peculiar to prophets, as they were the ones who were ordered by Allah Ta’Ala that they should make du’a and He SWT would answer. Now, it is the distinction of the followers of the Holy Prophet SAW (popularly identified as Ummah Muhammadiyyah) that this order was universalized for his entire Ummah. (Ibn Kathir) 

Explaining this verse, Sayyidna Nu’man Ibn Bashar RA narrated a Hadith that the Holy Prophet SAW said: Surely, prayer is worship on its own and then supported it by reciting this verse: Definitely those who show arrogance against worshipping Me shall enter Jahannam, disgraced. (reported by Imam Ahmad, Tirmidhi, Nasa’i, Abu Dawud and others – Ibn Kathir). 

It appears in Tafsir Mazhari that, if looked at under the rules of Arabic diction (confining of the predicate to the subject), the Hadith: ‘Surely, prayer is worship on its own’ could mean: ‘du’a is the very name of “ibadah’ or worship, that is, every dua ‘ is but ‘ibadah. Then, by reversing the same rule (confining the subject to the predicate), it could also mean that every act of ‘ibadah is itself nothing but a du’a. Both probabilities exist here. And at this place, the meaning is that du’a (prayer,  supplication) and ‘ibadah (worship, devotion) are, though separate from each other in terms of the literal sense, yet in terms of substantiation, they are unified, as every du’a is ‘ibadah and every ‘ibadah is du’a: The reason,is that ‘ibadah is the name of the attitude of showing one’s utter modesty and abasement before someone, and it is all too obvious that showing one’s utter helplessness before someone and extending one’s hand before him with ,the beggar’s bowl is a matter of great disgrace- which is the very sense of ‘ibadah. Similarly, the outcome of every ‘ibadah is also to ask Allah Ta’Ala for forgiveness and Jannah and that He blesses us with a perfect state of well being in this world and in the world to come. Therefore, it appears in a Hadith qudsi ( – a Hadith in which the Holy Prophet SAW conveys a saying from Allah that is not iqcluded in the Qur’an) that Allah Ta’Ala said: “One who is so engrossed in remembering Me that he does not have even the time to ask for what he needs, I shall give him more than those who ask (by fulfilling his needs without the asking)” (reported by al-Jazri in An-Nihayah) and in a narration appearing in Tirmidhi and Muslim, the words are: (“One who is so engrossed in the recitation of the Qur’an that he does not have even the time to ask for what he needs, I shall give him even more than what those who ask ever get”). This tells us that every ‘ibadah brings the same benefit as is the benefit of du’a. 

And in the Hadith of ‘Arafat, it appears that the Holy Prophet said, “In ‘Arafat, my dua’ and the dua’ of prophets before me is (the saying la ilaha il-lal-lahu wahdahu la sharika lahu lahul-mulku wa lahul-hamdu wa huwa ‘ala kulli shai’in qadir: There is no god but Allah who is one. No one shares His godhead. To Him belongs the kingdom and to Him belongs all praise, and He is powerful over everything) (reported by Ibn Abi Shaibah – Mazhari). 

Here, ‘ibadah: worship and dhikrullah: the dhikr or remembrance of Allah) has been called: du’a: prayer, supplication. 

In this verse under study, those who abandon du’a in the sense of ‘ibadah the warning of Jahannam given to them is in the eventually to being too proud, that is, a person who, in his pride, considers himself in no need of making a du’a and actually abandons it, then, this is a sign of kufr (open infidelity), therefore, the warning of Jahannam became due against him. Otherwise, making of dua’s, prayers and supplications as such is not fard (obligatory) or wajib (necessary). Leaving it off brings no sin. However, by a consensus of ‘ulama’, doing so is mustahabb (recommended) and is: (afdal: better, meritworthy) (Mazhari )  and in accordance with clarifications in ahadith, it is a source of many a barakah (blessing). 

Merits of du’a 

HADITH: The Holy Prophet SAW said, “There is nothing more deserving of regard by Allah Ta’Ala than du’a – Tirmidhi, Ibn MaJah and Hakim from Sayyidna Aba Hurairah RA. 

HADITH: The Holy Prophet SAW said, “du’a is the essence of ‘ibadah” – Tirmidhi from Sayyidna Anas Ibn Malik RA. 

HADITH: The Holy Prophet SAW said, “Ask Allah Ta’Ala of His grace because Allah Ta’Ala likes being asked, and it is a great act of ‘ibadah that one waits for ease while in hardship” – Tirmidhi from Sayyidna Ibn Mas’udaRA. 

HADITH: The Holy Prophet SAW said, “Verily, one who does not pray to Allah in his needs, He becomes angry with him” – Tirmidhi from Sayyidna Abu Hurairah RA, Ibn Hibban and Hakim. 

In Tafsir Mazhari, after having reported all these narrations, it has been said that the warning of Divine wrath on a person who does not make a dua is applicable only when this abstention from asking is based on arrogance, and on taking oneself to be need free, as it stands proved from the words of this verse: Definitely those who show arrogance against worshipping Me shall enter Jahannam, disgraced. 40:60). 

HADITH: The Holy Prophet SAW said, “Do not be weary of dua, for nobody dies of making du’a” – Ibn Hibban and Hakim from Sayyidna Anas Ibn Malik RA. 

HADITH: The Holy Prophet SAW said, “du’a is a weapon of the believer, a pillar of the faith, and the light of the heavens and the earth” – Hakim in al-Mustadrak from Sayyidna Abu Hurairah RA. 

HADITH: The Holy Prophet SAW said, “If the gates of dua are opened for someone (actually) the doors of mercy are.opened for him, and no du’a made before Allah Ta’Ala is appreciated more than that in which one asks of ‘afiyah (well-being) from Him” – Tirmidhi and Hakim from Sayyidna ibn Umar RA. 

The word: ‘afiyah appearing i n the Hadith mentioned immediately earlier is a very comprehensive word (usually rendered in English as ‘well-being’ meaning a state of being healthy and happy, though somewhat outdated in contemporary usage). Apart from a good life, it includes other things like security from unwelcome happenings, trials and calamities as well as a satisfactory fulfillment of all needs in life. 

Ruling:

Making du’a for committing a sin or for severance of blood relationships is haram (forbidden) – and, for that matter, such a dua does not get to be accepted with Allah either – as in a Hadith from Sayyidna Abu Sa’id al-Khudri RA. 

Dua and the promise of acceptance

In this verse, it has been promised that the dua a servant makes is accepted. But, on occasions, one also sees that a du’a was made and it was not accepted. The answer to this appears in a Hadith of Sayyidna Abu Sa’id al-Khudri RA where the Holy Prophet SAW has been reported to have said, “Whatever a Muslim prays for before Allah, He would let him have it – subject to the condition t h a t t h e du’a made was not for something sinful or for the severance of relationships that Allah has enjoined to be kept intact. As for the acceptance of dua, it takes one of the three forms given here: (I) That one gets exactly what one asked for. (2) That in lieu of what one wanted to have, one was given a certain return or reward of the Hereafter. (3) That one did not, though, get what one wanted, but some hardship or calamity that was due to fall on one stood removed. (Musnad Ahmad – Mazhari)

Conditions of the acceptance of du’a 

As for the present verse, it obviously seems to have no condition, almost to the extent that even being a Muslim is not a condition of du’a. Allah Ta’Ala accepts the du’a of a kafir (disbeliever) as well in this world to the extent that the du’a of Iblis to be allowed to live until the last day of Qiyamah was accepted. For dua, there is no condition of time, nor is there any condition that one must be with taharah (state of purity from pollutants) or wudu (ablution). But, there are trustworthy ahadith that identify a few things that preclude the chances of its acceptance. One must abstain from these. It appears in a Hadith from Sayyidna Abu Hurairah RA that the Holy Prophet SAW said, “…a man having been on a long journey is all disheveled and dust-coated and he stretches his hands upwards for du’a (saying): ‘ 0 my Lord! 0 my Lord!’ while his food is haram (unlawful), his drink: haram, his dress: haram, and he himself was brought up on the haram how then, could his du’a become worth accepting?” (Reported by Muslim) 

Similarly, if we were to say the words of dua negligently, heedlessly, without paying any attention, the Hadith says something about that too – that such a dua is also not accepted. (Tirmidhl from Sayyidna Abu Hurairah RA)

-Maariful Quran-Volume 7- Surah Mumin:40:60, page: 610-615

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2 Responses to “The reality of du’a and its merits, levels and conditions of acceptance”


  1. 2 theheartopener June 24, 2013 at 12:26 pm

    Bismillahirrahmanirraheem
    Assalamu alaikum WW

    Sinner’s prayers are also accepted; ‘I am a sinner’ should not stop you from praying.

    Example of Iblis Sometimes we think that we are not worthy of making dua, we are such sinners. Never avoid making dua for the reason that we are sinners because the Lord does not only accept the prayers of the virtuous, He also accepts the prayers of the sinners.

    Sufiyan bin Uyaina said a strange thing: Let not anyone among you be stopped from praying by the thought that you have sinned. Allah even accepted the worst sinner, Iblis’s dua when he said ‘Allah, give me time till the day of judgment’. Allah said, I granted it to you. So if Allah can accept shaytan’s prayers, then why should the supplicant who recites the kalima be worried! (42:30-43:30).This is shaitan’s weapon. He makes us think ‘we have sinned so much, what dua should we make? We have tongues that lie’. If the kalima recited from such a tongue can be accepted then the dua will also be accepted! So, never delay makind dua and never stop yourself from it. Need to make dua with the heart as well.
    http://islamicspiritualityk.wordpress.com/2011/08/22/qubooliyat-e-dua/
    inshaaAllah the article in the above link will be helpful.
    jazaakumAllahu khayra


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