4 years ago
IMPORTANCE AND BENEFITS OF OPTIMISM IN ISLAM
A person's life in this world is not stable. One passes through alternating periods of happiness and dismay, strength and weakness, wealth and poverty, health and sickness, etc. A true believer is one who maintains a clear level of faith throughout the worldly fluctuations. He continues to remember Allah (SWT) and ascribes all the bounties to Him, and he turns to Him in submission asking for relief from His affliction. This is described by the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), who said:
Optimism is highly appreciated in Islam and has been given great importance. Islam encourages us to be hopeful and always think good about Allah (SWT) and all His creations including people around us. Islam does not allow despair whatever the circumstances may be, because despair leads us towards disbelief in Allah (SWT), His power, His mercy and His bounties. Allah (SWT) Himself declares such people as disbelievers in the Holy Quran.
Prophet Muhammad’s (PBUH) optimism and trust in Allah (SWT) was highlighted during his dramatic journey to Madinah as he and Abu Bakr (his companion) hid in a cave to save themselves from Makkan pursuers, who were bent on killing them. As their pursuers reached the mouth of the cave looking to capture them, Abu Bakr turned to the Prophet in anxiety saying that they would be killed if the enemies peeked inside. But the Prophet responded with calm and optimism saying,
The term that covers the concept of optimism in Islam is “Husn-al-Zann” which refers to having good opinion and thinking well of others starting first and foremost with God Almighty Himself. The Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said that God Almighty declares:
It therefore is mandatory for a believer of Allah (SWT) to have a good opinion of Him. Such level of faith can only be reached as a result of discerning the Attributes of Allah (SWT), comprising Generosity, Mercifulness, Magnanimity, and the vastness of His forgiveness. On the other hand, if one considers his vices and sins to be bigger than the capacity of Allah’s (SWT) Generosity and Mercy, he starts mistrust in God and loses hope from His Mercy, and is equivalent to ascribing defects and shortcomings in Allah (SWT) and His Power and Mercy.
Now what a person needs to do in order to become optimistic? Here are few things which should be adopted by every believer of God Almighty.
1) Believe that nothing happens unless ordained by Allah (SWT). This motivates us to face troubles and go on in life having ups and downs. Allah (SWT) Himself asks the believers in the Quran:
2) Learn to forgive people. If you do so, you will always find yourself peaceful and contented. Allah (SWT) says in Quran:
3) Be patient. If you bear the difficulties in life with patience and remain conscious of Allah (SWT), He promises a way out for you:
Even if a person is sick, he is advised to be patient and positive as he will be having rewards for his patience. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said:
Thinking positive is a very important element of Islam. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) advised us that if you look forward to good things, it will happen with the Will of Allah (SWT). So always know that Allah (SWT) has a plan for you; even if you think something has went wrong, He will surely lead you to something good. He is working things out for you, even if you don’t feel it. Have faith and be thankful. Where faith and hope grows, miracles blossoms.
* SWT is the abbreviation of Subhanahu Wa Ta'ala which means The Exalted, The Majestic and Sublime.
* PBUH is the abbreviation of Peace Be Upon Him.