Do You Want Paradise?
By Jawad Ahmad
This should be our goal in life,
"I want to go to Jannah (Paradise)." It should be written
in bold letters on our foreheads so that it serves a constant reminder
for us. The Prophet (saws) has left with us a very small key to
Jannah, which we Muslims today have become oblivious of. Just
like you need a key to open your car door, or house door, or office
door; similarly you need a key to open Jannah to you. What is this
Prophet Muhammad (saws) said,"
Whoever goes down a path/road searching for Knowledge, Allah will
make it easy for him the road to Paradise." [Saheeh Muslim,
Vol.3 Hadith No. 99]
Travelling on the path to knowledge
refers both to walking or driving along an actual road/pathway,
such as going to Conferences, Conventions of ISNA, ICNA etc. going
to your local Masajids whenever there is either an international
scholar/speaker or a local Scholar/speaker speaking. Searching also
entails a metaphysical road, such as studying and memorising Quran
and Hadeeth. Not merely memorising like a parrot, but understanding
it first and then memorising it.
The above Hadeeth of the Prophet
(saws) means that Allah makes learning the useful knowledge that
is sought after easier for the seeker, clearing the way for him,
and smoothing his journey to Paradise.
This is why some of our pious predecessors
used to say, "Is there anyone seeking knowledge, so that we
can assist him in finding it?"
So brothers and sisters, be LOVERS
of Knowledge, be seekers of Knowledge. "Yes, where is my Quran,
where is my Hadeeth Bukhari."
Getting up every morning with a purpose:
to seek Jannah by seeking Knowledge! Knowledge is also the shortest
path to Allah. Whoever travels the road of knowledge reaches Allah
and Paradise by the shortest route. Knowledge also clears the way
out of darkness, ignorance, doubt and skepticism. It is why Allah
called His Book, Quran, "Light."
Knowledge is the ROAD to Paradise,
and Islam is the vehicle that takes you to this destination of Paradise.
Just like you get in a car to go from one destination to another,
but how? By finding out the directions to get there, either by seeing
a map or asking someone. Similarly, our Quran and Hadeeth
are our maps, and our scholars are the people who give the directions
from this map to get to our ultimate destination, Paradise.
Ask yourself, "Is Paradise easy?"
Have you ever seen, how easy it is for our Hafizul-Quran brothers
and sisters, who memorize the whole Quran by heart? Have you
ever seen how easy it is for some of us to study Quran and
Hadeeth for hours and hours, whilst others cannot even open the
Quran or Hadeeth at least once a year or month? Why?
Narrated Ali ibn Taalib (raa), While
the Prophet was in a funeral procession he picked up something and
started scraping the ground with it, and said," There is none
among you but has his place written for him either in Hell-Fire
or Paradise." They said, "O Messenger of Allah! Shall
we not depend upon what has been written for us and give up deeds?"
He said, "Carry on doing (good) deeds, for everybody will find
easy to do such deeds as will lead him to his destined place for
which he has been created. So he, who is destined to be among the
happy (in the Hereafter) will find it easy to do the deeds characteristic
of such people, while he who is destined to be among the miserable
ones, will find it easy to do the deeds characteristic of such people."
Then the Prophet recited the following verses: [Qur'an Al-Layl (92),
"As for him who gives and keeps
his duty to Allah and fears Him,"
"And believes in Husna (the
"We will make smooth for him
the path of Ease (goodness, ie. Paradise)"
"But he who is greedy miser
and thinks himself self-sufficient,"
"And gives the lie to Husna."
"We will make smooth for him
the path for Evil (ie. Hell-fire)."
[Saheeh Al-Bukhari, Vol.6, Hadith
Numerous examples of this above hadeeth
and verses of Allah are prevalent in our societies today, yet we
dont learn any lessons from them. For example, how easy it
is for some to fast the fast of Dawud, meaning fasting every other
day, or doing voluntary fasts of Shawwal, Muharram, Rajab, etc.
Whereas for some it is even hard to fast in Ramadhan, Why? ever
notice how easy it is for some to get up in the middle of the night
and talk to their Lord in private in Salat-ul-Tahajjud, while for
others it is hard to even make the Obligatory (Fardh) prayers? Why?
How easy it is for some to remain
single and yet guard their chastity and protect themselves from
fornication, while others are married and yet still indulge in adultery.
Why? How easily some memorise ayats (verses) of Quran and
Hadeeth, while others memorise the latest songs in the market and
memorise the latest cuss words used on streets. Why?
You see brothers and sisters, for
some of us it is very EASY to practice Islam, as Allah wants to
practice, while for others it is very HARD to practice. The answer
for this are the verses of Surah Al-Layl, because for those whom
it is easy to practice Islam, Allah is making it EASY the road to
Paradise, whilst for those whom it is hard to practice, Allah is
making it EASY for them the road to Hell-Fire. So why is it easy
for some to practice Islam? It is because they are lovers and seekers
of Knowledge and not only that, but also act upon that knowledge,
and thus Allah is making it easy for them their destination of Paradise.
Knowledge is the key and that is why our Prophet used to supplicate
in every prayer, "Allahumma Inni Auzubikaa Min Illmin Laa Yanfaau."
O Allah! I seek refuge in you from Knowledge that does not benefit.
It doesnt benefit you brothers
and sisters. For hours and hours you are sitting in front of that
TV and its not benefiting you as its not leading you to Paradise.
For hours and hours you waste time on bed-time novels or on magazines
and newspapers in a month and yet it doesnt lead you to Paradise.
When all that time you could have been studying Quran and
Hadeeth or reading Islamic books instead of bed-time story novels
and yet making easier for yourself the road to Paradise, and achieving
it Insha'Allah. Not only does it not benefit you, but will it harms
you. Hours and hours of those TV programs are not teaching you Quran
and Sunnah, rather teaching you how to date, or how to hook someone
from the opposite sex, or teaching you violence or foul language.
Thus instilling evil and wicked ideas and things into your mind
and heart, just for the pleasure of this temporary world, and making
you further away from your destination of Paradise.
In conclusion, I say this brothers
and sisters. We need to get our "cars" (Islam) fixed and
focused on the right direction to our destination of Paradise. We
need to pick up the "maps" (Quran & Sunnah)
and ask knowledgeable people (scholars/imams) for directions (road/path)