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Quranic Wisdom on Patience and Perseverance

 

Quranic Wisdom on Patience and Perseverance

Understanding the Concept of Shukr

Shukr, meaning gratitude, is one of the essential aspects of faith in Islam. It is an expression of one’s graciousness towards Allah (God) for all His blessings and provisions. Shukr includes acknowledging not only the good things in life but also the challenges and troubles as they are Allah’s tests, trials, and opportunities to strengthen one’s faith and increase one’s patience and perseverance.

Importance of Sabr in Muslim Life

Sabr, meaning patience and perseverance, is a central Islamic virtue. It is essential for the Muslim’s integrity, character, and spiritual growth because ‘Everything has itsfinished span, (so) exalted be Allah, the Real, (the) Bestower of all-embracing (forms of) Knowledge (and Guidance):’ (Quran, 6:121). The impermanence of life poses numerous challenges, but having Sabr brings forward positive characteristics such as peace, calmness, hope, and optimism that eventually lead to reward in both worlds. Thus, Sabr plays a fundamental role in Muslim life as it fortifies one’s faith, helps in overcoming obstacles, nurtures contentment, and assists in achieving victory and pleasure in this world and hereafter.

Examples of Patience from the Quran

The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) and his companions (may Allah be pleased with them) modeled the importance of Sabr through various life events. For example, after the Prophet’s migration to Medina, he faced a significant threat that could not be resolved through normal methods of dispute resolution, leading to the Battle of Uhud. The Prophet (peace be upon him) exhibited patience during the battle’s disastrous outcome, losing some of his close companions, including his uncle, Hamza. Allah (God) stated, ‘And when the true believers saw the confounding of their forces they said: ‘Is there, then, a way for us (in this matter)? ‘Said Muhammad: ‘Yes, (lies in) patience and felicity: But Allah is the best to provide (for needs): Neither did they twit each other for that which Allah had given them: And Allah is full of pity, Merciful. (3:172-173). This verse demonstrates the Prophet’s (peace be upon him) exceptional paradigm that dealt with Allah through Sabr and Shukr, receiving the best provision, and not having self-reproach for the outcome.

Body and Soul Balance in Achieving Sabr

Sabr is a combination of one’s physical and spiritual form. The body reflects the exterior state, and the soul illustrates the interior condition. Therefore, Sabr should be both physical and spiritual. Taking an example from the Quran, ‘Momentary enjoyment is for those who reach old age in mind (yuwaffuhu ‘l- ‘aqlu qadhwanan) and feeble in physique (wa’lbayn qadhhanan). ‘But the righteous enjoy a good (lasting) life, and [also] a good provision: And they shall be secure from a affrightful Doom. ‘In Gardens [blest] through which streams flow, – ‘Dwelling therein (for ever)! – A blessing from Allah’; (Yunus; 85-89). ‘Yuwaffuhu ‘l- ‘aqlu qadhwanan’ and ‘wa’lbayn qadhhanan’ denote individuals who are old in perception and weak in body, respectively. This universal truth applies regardless of age or physical ability. The verse further highlights that fulfillment and tranquility originate from holistic stability in one’s soul and body.

Cultivating Perseverance through Quranic Verses

The Quran contains an intricate system of rhyme, repetition, and succinctness, which not only explains Allah’s message but also exhibits concise exercises to cultivate Sabr in an individual’s life. For example, ‘Indeed, Allah will not change the condition of a people until they change what is in themselves’ (Quran; 13:11), conveys Allah’s affirmation that people should initially change their interior state before expecting an external change. ‘Verily! Allah will not forgive (the sin of) joining other gods with Himbut He will forgive whom He pleases other sins than that and to whom He pleases He will bring about easy for him)’ (Quran; 4:116), indicates that Allah forgives major sins, however, He allows minor mistakes for those whom He wants to bring ease and hardship is for His obedient servants who enjoy luxury is a testification that those who watch opportunities of Sabr while facing victory or obstacles can enjoy Allah’s reward. These verses provide fundamental affirmations that instill Sabr in an individual’s life through reasons, promises, and warnings.

 

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Ramadan Kareem

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