Local Time

Sunday, July 16, 2006

The Power of Du'a

By Khalid Baig

Du'a is the most potent weapon of a believer. With it, we can never fail, without it, we can never succeed.

Once Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh) passed by a group of people who were suffering from some affliction. "Why don't they make du'a (supplication) to Allah for protection," he said. With all the suffering and disasters Muslims are facing in various parts of the world, the question can be directed to all of us today.

It is not that we have forgotten du'a completely, we refer to it regularly. But our ideas and practice regarding du'a have become distorted. Often it is reduced to the level of a ritual. Generally it is considered when all our efforts have failed-an act of last resort. It is belittled through actions and sometimes even with words. Is it any wonder that today mostly a mention of du'a is meant to indicate the hopelessness of a situation.

What a tragedy, for du'a is the most potent weapon of a believer. It can change fate, while no action of ours ever can. It is the essence of ibada or worship. With it, we can never fail, without it, we can never succeed. In the proper scheme of things, du'a should be the first and the last resort of the believer, with all his plans and actions coming in between.

Du'a is conversation with Allah, our Creator, our Lord and Master, the All Knowing, the All Powerful. This act in itself is of extraordinary significance. It is the most uplifting, liberating, empowering, and transforming conversation a person can ever have. We turn to Him because we know that He alone can lift our sufferings and solve our problems. We feel relieved after describing our difficulties to our Creator. We feel empowered after having communicated with the All Mighty.

In every difficulty, our first action is du'a, as is our last. We ask Allah to show us the way to handle that difficulty, we seek His help in following the path He shows to us, we seek His aid in making our efforts successful. When we fall sick, we know that we cannot find the right doctor without His Will, that the best doctor may not be able to diagnose our condition without His Command, that the best treatment plan will not succeed without His permission. We make du'a for all of these. We make du'a before we seek medical help, while we are receiving it and after it has been delivered. The same is true of all other difficulties we may encounter.

Du'a is the essence of ibada. A person engaged in du'a affirms his belief in Tauheed (monotheism) and shuns belief in all false gods. A person seriously and sincerely engaged in du'a understands exactly the relationship between himself and the Creator and affirms it through his actions. That is the essence of worship!

Additionally, such a person can never become arrogant or proud, a logical result of true worship.

Du'a is our most potent weapon in all struggles of life as well as in jihad in the battlefield. During the battle of Badr, Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh) stood up all night in prayer seeking Allah's help in the battle between unequal armies that would follow the next day. In the decisive battles against the crusaders, Sultan Salahuddin Ayyubi was busy day and night. His days were devoted to jihad. His nights were spent making du'a, crying, and seeking Allah's help.

We should make it a point to make du'a for all things big and small. It is the beginning of wisdom to realize that big and small are arbitrary labels that are totally irrelevant in this context. Nothing is too big for the One we are asking from; nothing is too small for the one who is asking. That is why we have been taught to ask Allah even when we need something as small as shoelaces. We should ask as a beggar, as a destitute person, for that is what we in reality are in relationship to Allah. At the same time, we should ask with great hope and conviction that we shall be granted our prayers. We should remember the hadith: "There is nothing more dear to Allah than a servant making du'a to Him." On the other hand, a du'a lacking concentration and conviction is no du'a at all.

We should make du'a at all times, not only during times of distress. We should ask for all of our needs: those related to this world as well as those related to the Hereafter. We should make du'a not only for ourselves, but also for our parents, brothers and sisters, spouses and children, relatives and friends, teachers and other benefactors, destitute and struggling Muslims everywhere. We should pray for them for the good in this world as well as in the Hereafter. The Prophet (Pbuh) said:

"The du'a of a Muslim for his brother (in Islam) in his absence is readily accepted. An angel is appointed to his side. Whenever he makes a beneficial du'a for his brother the appointed angel says, Aameen. And may you also be blessed with the same.'[Muslim, Hadith 4914]

In the dark ages that we are living in today, everyday brings fresh news about atrocities committed against our brothers in Palestine, Kashmir, India, Afghanistan, Iraq, Chechnya, etc. And what do we do? We can continue to just feel frustrated and depressed. We can petition the determined perpetrators or a fictional "International Community." We can just forget all this and move on to some other subject. Or we can stand up before Allah and pray for His help, Who alone can help.

Du'a can change our life, our outlook, and our fate. It is the most potent weapon. But it works only for those who try sincerely and seriously to use it.


English to Arabic to English Dictionary
Find word:
Exact Word / Starting Word Sub Word

Please Feel Free to Donate