Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Sources of Happiness in Islam.

By: Maged Taman

According to the wikipedia ( http://www.wikipedia.org/ ) Happiness is an emotion associated with feelings ranging from contentment and satisfaction to bliss and intense joy.
A variety of philosophical, religious, psychological and biological approaches have been taken to defining happiness and identifying its sources.
Happiness forms a central theme of Buddhist teachings, which focuses on obtaining freedom from suffering by following the Eightfold Path. In the Buddhist view, ultimate happiness is only achieved by overcoming craving in all forms. In Catholicism, the ultimate end of human existence consists in felicity, or "blessed happiness", described by the 13th-century philosopher-theologian Thomas Aquinas as a Beatific Vision of God's essence in the next life.[1] One psychological approach, positive psychology, describes happiness as consisting of positive emotions and positive activities.

In Islam we attain happiness in both material and non-material factors. The material is more felt as pleasures and the non-material is more of satisfaction, content and feeling self-fulfilled. In fact both are obtainable both in this life and more so in the hereafter as eluded in these points.

1- Happiness in submission to God: We are created to worship God doing that is through rituals like prayers and through living our life according to him what we call submission or Islam.

5:16 Wherewith Allah guideth all who seek His good pleasure to ways of peace and safety, and leadeth them out of darkness, by His will, unto the light,- guideth them to a path that is straight.
يَهْدِي بِهِ اللّهُ مَنِ اتَّبَعَ رِضْوَانَهُ سُبُلَ السَّلاَمِ وَيُخْرِجُهُم مِّنِ الظُّلُمَاتِ إِلَى النُّورِ بِإِذْنِهِ وَيَهْدِيهِمْ إِلَى صِرَاطٍ مُّسْتَقِيمٍ (5:16)

6:162 Say: "Behold, my prayer, and (all] my acts of worship, and my living and my dying are for God [alone], the Sustainer of all the worlds,
قُلْ إِنَّ صَلاَتِي وَنُسُكِي وَمَحْيَايَ وَمَمَاتِي لِلّهِ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ (6:162)

2- We realize ourselves and attain satisfaction when we know, remember and praise him.

13:28 those who believe, and whose hearts find their rest in the remembrance of God - for, verily, in the remembrance of God [men's] hearts do find their rest-:
الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ وَتَطْمَئِنُّ قُلُوبُهُم بِذِكْرِ اللّهِ أَلاَ بِذِكْرِ اللّهِ تَطْمَئِنُّ الْقُلُوبُ (13:28)

20:130 Hence, bear with patience whatever they [who deny the truth] may say, and extol thy Sustainer's limitless glory and praise Him before the rising of the sun and before its setting; and extol His glory, too, during some of the hours of the night as well as during the hours of the day,
so that thou might attain to happiness.
فَاصْبِرْ عَلَى مَا يَقُولُونَ وَسَبِّحْ بِحَمْدِ رَبِّكَ قَبْلَ طُلُوعِ الشَّمْسِ وَقَبْلَ غُرُوبِهَا وَمِنْ آنَاء اللَّيْلِ فَسَبِّحْ وَأَطْرَافَ النَّهَارِ لَعَلَّكَ تَرْضَى (20:130)

In the contrary when man separates himself from God develop a separation anxiety. He may not know what he is missing but he feels empty, unfulfilled and restless.

3- Happiness in prayer: When the time of prayers comes prophet Muhammad would ask Bilal the caller of prayer " O Bilal comfort us with prayer (meaning to call for prayer).

4- Happiness in prostration: It is not my own observation alone but most of Muslims attest that you feel most close to God and your heart more rested during prostration:

96:19 Nay, pay thou no heed to him, but prostrate thyself [before God] and draw close [unto Him]!
كَلَّا لَا تُطِعْهُ وَاسْجُدْ وَاقْتَرِبْ (96:19)

5- Happiness in fasting: When Muslims fast then break his fast at sundown he would have two happiness according to the prophet one for eating after hunger and the other for getting the reward from God in the day of judgment.

6- Material things like enjoying money, cars, houses, sex and so on is only temporary and even if intense it subsides quickly. When it is sinfully obtained by deceit and wickedness they are commonly followed by fear, anxiety and guilt. Material happiness obtained even through the right and legal ways is less than that of submission to God. The later is more prolonged, more deep and full of content and rest. God wants us to enjoy life but the more important is the eternal life.

28:77 But seek the abode of the hereafter in that which Allah hath given thee and neglect not thy portion of the world, and be thou kind even as Allah hath been kind to thee, and seek not corruption in the earth; lo! Allah loveth not corrupters, -
وَابْتَغِ فِيمَا آتَاكَ اللَّهُ الدَّارَ الْآخِرَةَ وَلَا تَنسَ نَصِيبَكَ مِنَ الدُّنْيَا وَأَحْسِن كَمَا أَحْسَنَ اللَّهُ إِلَيْكَ وَلَا تَبْغِ الْفَسَادَ فِي الْأَرْضِ إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَا يُحِبُّ الْمُفْسِدِينَ (28:

In fact God gives us happiness to test us if we will be thankful to him. In fact he tests us with trials to see if we will be patient and keep our relationship with him:

2:155 Be sure we shall test you with something of fear and hunger, some loss in goods or lives or the fruits (of your toil), but give glad tidings to those who patiently persevere,

وَلَنَبْلُوَنَّكُمْ بِشَيْءٍ مِّنَ الْخَوفْ وَالْجُوعِ وَنَقْصٍ مِّنَ الأَمَوَالِ وَالأنفُسِ وَالثَّمَرَاتِ وَبَشِّرِ الصَّابِرِينَ (2:155

7- Whatever you get in this life the real happiness is that of the hereafter:

11:108 But as for those who [by virtue of their past deeds] will have been blest with happiness, [they shall live] in paradise, therein to abide as long as the heavens and the earth endure -unless thy Sustainer wills it otherwise -as a gift unceasing.
وَأَمَّا الَّذِينَ سُعِدُواْ فَفِي الْجَنَّةِ خَالِدِينَ فِيهَا مَا دَامَتِ السَّمَاوَاتُ وَالأَرْضُ إِلاَّ مَا شَاء رَبُّكَ عَطَاء غَيْرَ مَجْذُوذٍ (11:108)

89:27 But ah! thou soul at peace! يَا أَيَّتُهَا النَّفْسُ الْمُطْمَئِنَّةُ (89:27) Baset - Hussari - Minshawi
89:28 Return unto thy Lord, content in His good pleasure! ارْجِعِي إِلَى رَبِّكِ رَاضِيَةً مَّرْضِيَّةً (89:28) Baset - Hussari - Minshawi
89:29 Enter thou among My bondmen! -فَادْخُلِي فِي عِبَادِي (89:29) Baset - Hussari - Minshawi

89:30 Enter thou My Garden! وَادْخُلِي جَنَّتِي (89:30)








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