In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.
Many people, and not just non-Muslims, become resentful when they or someone they love is afflicted with a calamity. To be sure, many people around the world are afflicted with difficult hardships and trials. Upon contemplating the situation of many among them, I asked myself, “How perfect Allah is! Indeed, He is the most generous of all, and generosity necessitates forgiveness. Then why is it that so many people are being punished?” It did not take long for me to find the answer to that question, for I came to the realization that most people lead worthless lives: they do not contemplate the numerous signs that point to the oneness of Allah; they care not about Allah’ commands and prohibitions; instead, they live as beasts do, caring for nothing except for food, drink, pleasure, and sleep. And here I am not referring only to non-Muslims, for there are many Muslims who apply the teachings of Islam only when doing so is easy or in agreement with their desires; otherwise, they blindly follow their lusts, caring not about how they earned their wealth – whether it is from lawful or unlawful sources. If it is easy for them to pray, they will pray; otherwise, they will forsake compulsory prayers. Others among them perpetrate grave sins, without afterwards feeling any remorse or guilt. Thus I came to know that, for many people, the punishments, trials, and afflictions that befall them – however great they may be – are less severe than the severity of their sins. Upon suffering a calamity, one might call out, “Why did this happen to me?” Yet he forgets the many sins he perpetrated throughout his life. And in his old age, a man might suffer a great deal of humiliation, to the degree that, by just looking at him, people pity him; yet perhaps they do not know that he is just being punished for not having fulfilled Allah’s rights during his youth. So whenever you see one who is being punished, know that it is because of his sins.
“(What is the matter with you?) When a single disaster smites you, although you smote (your enemies) with one twice as great, you say: “From where does this come us?” Say (to them), “It is from yourselves (because of your evil deeds).” And Allah has power over all things.” (Quran 3:165)
And this brings us to the point:
Gems and Jewels
Compiled by: Abdul-Malik Mujahid
Publisher: Maktaba Dar-us-Salam