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Whenever You Are Afflicted, Say These 4 Powerful Du’as

In a beautiful statement, Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq said:

“I am amazed at the one who has been afflicted with fear, and he does not flee to the Words of Allah:

Sufficient for us is Allah, and [He is] the best Disposer of affairs’

For verily Allah has said after it:

So they returned with favor from Allah and bounty, no harm having touched them.’ (Quran, 3:173-174)

And I am amazed at the person who is afflicted with sadness, and he does not flee to the Words of Allah:

There is no deity except You; exalted are You. Indeed, I have been of the wrongdoers.

For verily Allah has said after it:

So We responded to him and saved him from the distress. And thus do We save the believers. (21:87-88)

And I am amazed at the person who is afflicted with betrayal and deception by people, and he does not flee to the Words of Allah:

I entrust my affair to Allah. Indeed, Allah is Seeing of [His] servants

For verily Allah has said after it:

So Allah protected him from the evils they plotted, and the people of Pharaoh were enveloped by the worst of punishment.’ (40:44-45)

And I am amazed at the person who is afflicted with sickness, and he does not flee to the Words of Allah:

Indeed, adversity has touched me, and you are the Most Merciful of the merciful.

For verily Allah has said after it:

So We responded to him and removed what afflicted him of adversity. And We gave him [back] his family and the like thereof with them as mercy from Us and a reminder for the worshipers [of Allah]. (21:83-84)

Let us ponder over these supplications, and what made them so wonderful.

Let us recite them ourselves in our times of grief, hardship or sadness so that like the people of old, we are given a miraculous outcome as well!

We start our journey with the Prophet Ayyub (peace be upon him). He was an affluent person with a lot going good in his life. Then suddenly he fell ill. It was a skin disease where he had pus coming out of his body and all the people started moving away from him. Moreover, after an accident he lost many of his children.

Narrations mention that after nearly 14 years of suffering, he finally made this du’a to Allah. All he said was

Indeed, adversity has touched me, and you are the Most Merciful of the merciful.

The two aspects of this du’a that are part of the etiquette of making the du’a are:

1- Expressing his weakness– He tells Allah he has been touched by adversity, thereby expressing his helplessness about the situation.

2- Doesn’t blame Allah- He could have said, “Allah you tested me with adversity”, but rather said “adversity has touched me”, showing the respect to Allah that is part of our etiquette in du’a.

3- He asks for Allah’s Mercy– In spite of all that has gone on, the Prophet still asks for Allah’s mercy. He has not lost hope in Allah’s mercy in spite of all that has happened.

The second supplication we will look at is by the companions of the Prophet (peace be upon him) during the battle of Uhud. The companions had just suffered a bad defeat. The Quraysh were rallying for another round to finish off the Muslims.

Rumors were spreading that the Prophet himself had died. And in the midst of the Muslims, some hypocrites were saying that there are a lot of people against you, fear them! Yet, the Companions only had their faith increased, and in times of the greatest tribulation they said:

Sufficient for us is Allah, and He is the best Disposer of affairs.

When all means came to an end, they trusted their hearts on the Lord of the means. They knew where true help and true victory came from. Because Allah is the Best Caretaker of all affairs. He takes care of us while we do not recognize it.

Only during a time when we are in desperate need do we understand how much Allah really does take care of us. And Allah saved them, and delivered them.

When the Prophet Ibrahim was thrown into the fire, he said the same supplication and Allah changed the laws of nature for him so that the fire didn’t burn him. When Aisha was slandered, she made the same du’a, and Allah revealed 20 verses of the Quran protesting her innocence. What can we learn from this du’a?

4- Trusting in Allah– The people tried to put doubts in their hearts, but they trusted in Allah. They knew that no matter what happens, Allah will not let them down. One of the keys of having a du’a accepted is in completely trusting that Allah will deliver.

5- Letting Allah take care of it all– Not a leaf falls but Allah knows about it. When things do not seem right and we have no clue where to go and how to ask Allah, we can always just allow Him and His plan to take shape, because He is the Best Caretaker of affairs!

On from the first story of tremendous patience, to the second of unbelievable courage to the third today which we can relate to a bit more- du’a after committing a mistake. Yunus (peace be upon him) was a Prophet. He was a Prophet who went and called a nation to Islam.

However, when his people rejected, he got angry and left them. He boarded a ship and they hit a storm. Allah gave the people various signs, and part of it was that someone on the ship should be sent overboard.

They drew lots and all three times the person who came up was the Prophet Yunus. He accepted his fate and he was thrown overboard. That was bad enough. But, then a whale came up and swallowed him whole.

As he sat in the darkness, he remembered Allah. It was a dark night, and inside a dark ocean he was inside the belly of a whale, which was dark as well! From behind the three layers of darkness he called out:

There is no deity except You: exalted are You. Indeed, I have been of the wrongdoers.

Allah then ordered the whale to throw him up on the shore. In the depths of darkness, he called, and till date we know this du’a as “Du’a Yunus”.

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said that whoever asks Allah by saying this du’a will be granted their wish.

Moreover, one of the tricks of shaytan (satan) is that he makes us lose hope in Allah after having committed a sin. This du’a is proof that after making a mistake, we should turn to Allah even more! What is it that the Prophet Yunus taught us about du’a here?

6- No matter what he had done, he didn’t feel any qualms about turning to Allah during His time of need.

7- Allah helps His slave regardless of what was done in the past.

8- Admitting sins is one of the ways our du’as are made even more powerful. It is proof that Allah gives us not because of who we are, but because of His Grace and Generosity.

To the last of the verses, and it is the du’a we recite commonly when we hear of anyone’s death. This is the du’a that should be recited when disaster strikes. At the time of disaster is when we often forget Allah.

And hence remembering Allah at that time is mentioned, and straight after that Allah mentions that these people are those upon whom is Allah’s blessings and mercy. What an amazing reward!

When Abu Salamah, the husband of Umm Salamah, died, she was in a lot of grief. She made this very du’a and also asked Allah to provide her with something better than what she has gone through.

She wondered then if she would ever find a husband better than Abu Salamah. Lo and behold, the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) himself proposed marriage to her!

Indeed we belong to Allah, and indeed to Him we will return.

9- Ownership to Allah– This du’a is one where the one making du’a makes it clear that ownership belongs to Allah. In our times of disaster we have a feeling of control slipping from our lives. This du’a is a clarification that control might never be in our hands, but Allah has it all under control.

10- Reminder of the hereafter– Disasters are a way for Allah to make us yearn less for this world, and to yearn more for the hereafter. The hereafter is where Allah will right every wrong as well. And hence we finish the du’a saying to Him we will return.

These 4 du’as teach us 10 crucial lessons in making supplications to Allah. They teach us about what it is about these du’as that make them so beloved to Allah that He has placed them in the Quran for them to be recited till the end of times.

So to summarize the 10 lessons that will help us make amazing du’a, they are:

  1. Expressing our weakness
  2. Not blaming Allah
  3. Never forgetting His Mercy
  4. Trusting that He will deliver
  5. Letting Him take care of what will happen
  6. Turning to Allah whenever we are in need
  7. Knowing He helps regardless of our past
  8. Admitting our sins
  9. Knowing that He owns everything
  10. Remembering the hereafter.

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