One quote that we look at in an online classes that we teach is this one by Ibn al-Qayyim. Allow yourself to absorb the depth of its meaning:
لا تفسد فرحتك بالقلق، ولا تفسد عقلك بالتشاؤم، ولا تفسد نجاحك بالغرور، ولا تفسد تفاؤل الآخرين بإحباطهم، ولا تفسد يومك بالنظر إلى الأمس
“Don’t ruin your happiness with worry, and don’t ruin your mind with pessimism. Don’t ruin your success with deception and don’t ruin the optimism of others by destroying it. Don’t ruin your day by looking back at yesterday.”
A few points that we can derive from these golden words:
- Many people worry about a plethora of issues – the vast majority of which have not happened yet and probably never will. We tend to fear the future and as a result, we don’t actually get to enjoy the blessings of Allah in the present. We ruin great things for ourselves because of this habit of worry (yes, it’s a habit for a lot of people!). Learn to live in the present. Leave the future for when it comes, and cross bridges when you come to them!
- Pessimism often leads to a very ugly and dark mind as well as a troubled heart. It has the power to distort your perception in ways that you never thought possible. Snap out of it! Tell yourself positive things and keep a bright & well-lit mind. If you have nothing good to say to your soul, then as the golden rule states, remain silent – even from your own self.
- Truthfulness, honesty, and gratitude increase one’s blessings whilst deception, lies, and dishonesty remove them, as well as ruin the khayr in your life. Root these out! And whilst you’re at it, root out any deception or ill-will you may have placed in other people’s lives too. If you see someone positive, happy, upbeat, and generally getting on with their life, never ever take that away from them. It’s their gift and perhaps great things are unfolding for them purely because of this wonderful attitude they carry. Let them be, let them enjoy their positivity and radiant aura – even if it doesn’t make sense to you.
- Remember that every day is a new day. It has its challenges, its blessings, its opportunities, its treasures. Just as you cannot ruin your optimism or the optimism others, you cannot rob the day of the optimism that arrives with it. Staring back at the past and all the ‘what ifs’, and ‘if only’s’, will forever keep you chained down and restricted from moving forward. Leave the past where it is and look to the present before it escapes you and thus joins the past that you keep regretting.
May Allah grant us tawfiq in making the best of our days, ameen.