At Peace

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Thursday, September 03, 2009

Patience at all times

This topic is very dear to my heart. My wife told me that i am 'too patient' to the point of being procrastinate. Whenever she asked me:

"Abang... tolong masak nasi." I will say, "Sabarrr." 2 hours later, the rice was still not cooked.
"Abang... buat paper tu." I will say, "Sabarrr." Months later, paper was still in progress.

Definitely that is not sabar as sabar should bring good. That was total laziness. So what is sabar?


SABAR linguistacally means to restrain or to bind. Allah relates patience with the affliction in the Quran.

"Be sure We shall test you with something of fear and hunger, some loss in goods, lives, and the fruits of your toil. But give glad tidings to those who patiently persevere. Those who say, when afflicted with calamity, 'To Allah we belong, and to Him is our return.' They are those on whom descend blessings from their Lord, and mercy. They are the ones who receive guidance." (2:155-157)

When we don't get what we want, we need to be sabar.
When we lose something we love, we pray for the goodness out of it and we need to be sabar.
When we get angry and know it is going to get worse, we switch mode to sabar, and we calm down.

Not ony we should be patient when calamity befall us, but also we should be patient in doing good deeds. At times we feel that we could not understand why Allah prescribes Solat of fasting or apparent injustice in distributing inheritance. If we check and they are truly from Allah and His prophet, then our role to obey. We know Allah is Most Knowledgable and He is Most Wise, so there is no mistake from His part. Only our finite mind could not comprahend the reason behind it.

To what extent we should be patient?

The question then become, to what extent would we be sabar? Do we just leave other people take advantage over us because we did not say anything back? Borrowing what Ustaz Hasrizal used to say, sabar is like a pause button. You think before you decide what you want to do. We are entitled to be angry when we are wronged, or sad when we lose someone - but because of sabar, we don't go to the extreme of wailing when somebody dies and shouting and swearing when we are wronged. We stop, and think - what would Islam ask me to do now. If we need to report to the superior because we are being buliied, go ahead. It has nothing to do with sabar.

The patience shown purely for Allah should not be the source of distress. It should not be then, when we are mad, we say "Sabar, sabar (sambil mengurut dada)" but actually it becomes a restriction to us. Sabar should gives us pleasure as we are following what Allah's want. That is why it is so hard to do.

Seek help in steadfastness and prayer. But that is a very hard thing, except for the humble (Al-Baqarah 2:45).

Why do we need to be sabar?

As with other good manners prescribed to us, patience is one of the ultimate virtue in Islam. Why? Because Allah said, sabar is very comprehensive that there is nothing else better than that.

Whoever practices Sabr, Allaah Subhanahu wa Ta'alaa gives him Sabr. And no one can be given anything better or more far-reaching (comprehensive) than Sabr. (Bukhari)

Sometimes we need to be reminded to be patience. I remember when i was involved in my 3rd car accident (and hopefully the last). I came home shaken. My wife was at home. Knowing I just had an accident, she did not say much. However, she put on mp3 so we could listened together a ceramah by Dr Asri. It was about Allah promise that every tiredness, sickness, sadness and even a prick of a thorn - Allah will make it a reason for our sins o be forgiven. I still cherished that moment of calmness and tranquility.

The Prophet said: No fatigue, nor disease, nor sorrow, nor sadness, nor hurt, nor distress befalls a Muslim, even if it were the prick he receives from a thorn, but that Allah expiates some of his sins for that. (Bukhari)

here's how it looks like after accident - June 2007

Sabar is at the beginning

We certainly would have experience people whom we were trying to console, either because the fail exams or their parents died or anything at all. Our sincere intentions were received with sarcasm. Not uncommon we were told that we are not the one who got the affliction, and nobody will never understand how bad they felt. Certainly at times of sadness, our emotions sometimes cloud our judgment. Only then we realise that we should not have done that. Prophet said, the patience should displayed from the very beginning

Allah's Messenger passed by a woman crying next to a grave. He told her: Have taqwa of Allah and be patient. Not recognizing him, she responded: Leave me alone, you have not been struck by an affliction like mine! She was told that he was Allah's Messenger. Extremely distressed and agitated at her blunder, she hastened to him and said: O Allah's Messenger, I did not recognise you. The Messenger replied: Indeed, patience should be displayed at the beginning of the affliction. (Bukhari)

Strange Muslim

What would happen if we could combine two characteristic of good muslims- sabr and shukur? The goodness will be ours all the time. When we get sick, we remember Allah that this could be expiation of sins and be patient. When we are healthy, we give thanks to Allah (Shukr). Nothing actually can deter us from remembering God.

The matter of a Mu’min is very strange; anything that happens to him is good for him, and this applies only to a Mu’min. If something good happens to him and he is grateful to Allah, it is good for him, and if something bad happens to him and he is patient, then it is good for him as well". (Bukhari)

Let us be strange Muslims!


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