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Du'a and Its Importance

By: Yasin Syed

Muslims worship Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala in many ways. We follow the five pillars of worship, we pray five times a day and we also pray extra prayers (nawafil salah) to make our faith in Allah stronger. But Muslims can also make du'a (supplication) to Allah in order to increase their faith. By making du'a, we are recognizing the power and the glory of Allah Ta'ala and we are asking for mercy and help from our Creator.

According to Hadrat Anas bin Malik, Rady Allahu 'Anhu, the Holy Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam has said, "Du'a is the essence of worship." (Tirmidhi). By supplicating to Allah, we are communicating directly with Him. We should always make du'a whenever it is possible for us since Allah is the only One who can help us through His knowledge and power. Whenever we need assistance or help, we should always turn towards Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala. A Muslim should not think that it is unnecessary for him to make du'a since Allah is aware of his thoughts and will grant his wishes if He wills. He should always supplicate to Allah for assistance and should beg for His forgiveness.

However, it is very important that we don't become disappointed or unhappy when one of our du'as is not accepted by Allah. Allah is well aware of all things and He has the knowledge of the Unseen. We should be content with whatever decision Allah the Almighty has chosen for us even though it might be disappointing. In a hadith, the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam has said, "No one makes a du'a without Allah giving him what he asks for, or keeping away from him a similar amount of evil, provided he does not ask for something sinful or for breaking family ties." (Tirmidhi)

Allah Subhananhu wa Ta'ala is All-Merciful and he accepts the du'a of Muslims when we ask for His help. However, He accepts the du'as of some people more readily than others. For example, in a hadith, the Holy Prophet Muhammad Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam has said that the supplications of three persons are not refused - a fasting person when breaking the fast, a just ruler, and an oppressed person. (Tirmidhi) Allah also accepts the du'as of the person who is in urgent need and a person who is travelling. Allah also accepts immediately the du'as of a righteous person such as a shaykh. Therefore, we should try to ask a righteous person to make du'a for us since it will get accepted by Allah more easily. The du'a of a Muslim for another brother or sister whom he/she has not met is also readily accepted by Allah. For example, there are times in a mosque, when the congregation is urged to pray for the health of a sick person. We should join in and pray so that we can benefit from Allah's blessings.

However, it is very important that we supplicate to Allah with adab (respect). A person who makes du'a should be physically clean and tidy. He should also be very sincere in his supplication to Allah and should have faith in Him. The Qur'an says, "Call on your Lord with humility and in private, for He does not love those who go beyond bounds" (Surah 7, Verse 55). While making du'a, a Muslim should also face towards the direction of the qibla and should read his du'a in a median tone. Allah says in the Holy Qur'an, "Neither say your prayer aloud, nor speak it in a low tone, but seek a middle course between." (Surah 17, Verse 110). A Muslim should have the utmost confidence that his du'a will be accepted.

We should begin our du'as by thanking Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala for His infinite bounties that He has sent down upon us and we should send salutations on the Holy Prophet Muhammad Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam. The Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam has said, "Whoever sends blessings on me once, Allah blesses him ten times more." The du'a should also be repeated at least three times. In our du'as, we should first supplicate to Allah for forgiveness and security. In a hadith, a man came to the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam and said, "O Messenger of Allah, which is the best supplication?" The Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam said, "Supplicate to your Lord for forgiveness and security in this world and in the Hereafter." He came again the next day, and then again on the following day and asked him the same thing. The Prophet, Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam gave him the same answer, and then said, "If you are given forgiveness and security in this world and in the Hereafter you have attained success." (Ibn Majah).

We should also take the utmost advantage of blessed occasions such as the month of Ramadan, the pilgrimage of Hajj and Fridays to supplicate to Allah since du'a during these occasions is readily accepted by Allah. We should also take advantage of the five daily prayers and of the later part of the night to supplicate to Allah. In a hadith, the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam was asked, "'What supplication finds the greatest acceptance?' The Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam answered, "A prayer offered in the middle of the latter part of the night and after the prescribed Prayers." (Tirmidhi)

Finally, we should not only supplicate to Allah to grant us success in the Hereafter and to provide good-health for us but we also should also supplicate to Allah for the well-being of our parents, grandparents, relatives and for the entire Muslim ummah. We should be concerned about our fellow Muslims brothers and sisters and we should help them or pray for them during times of need and distress. Insha Allah, by making du'a for them, Allah will also shower his mercy and blessings on us.

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