One will be happy to the degree that one remembers
Allah and recites His Book. And after considering this principle, one may estimate
his worth in this world and in the Hereafter.
(And were it not that all mankind would have become of
one community [all disbelievers, desiring worldly life only], We would have
provided for those who disbelieve in the Most Beneficent [Allah], silver roofs
for their houses, and elevators [and stair-ways, etc. of silver] whereby they
ascend. And for their houses, doors (of silver), and thrones [of silver] on
which they could recline, and adornments of gold. Yet all this [i.e. the roofs,
doors, stairs, elevators, thrones etc. of their houses] would have been nothing
but an enjoyment of this world. And the Hereafter with your Lord is only for
the pious and righteous persons who fear Allah much.) (Qur’an 43: 33-35)
These verses proclaim in clear terms the temporary,
therefore insignificant, worth of material possessions and social status.
We should realize that this life is not the yardstick
of success when we see that the disbeliever often lives a life of opulence
while the believer is often precluded from many worldly pleasures, a phenomenon
that merely indicates the paltry value of this world.
While giving a sermon on a Friday, ‘Utbah ibn Ghazwan
(may Allah be pleased with him), a well-known Companion of the Prophet (bpuh),
was reminiscing out loud about what the days were like when he lived with the
Prophet (bpuh). ‘Utbah would fight with him in the way of Allah, and to avoid
starvation, he would eat with him the leaves of a tree. Yet he remembered those
days to be the happiest of his life. Then he recalled how he departed from the
Prophet (bpuh), becoming a governor of a province. And despite this rise in
worldly status, he felt wonder at how much lower the true quality of life became
after the death of the Prophet (bpuh).
After the death of the Prophet (bpuh), Sa’ad ibn Abi
Waqqaas (may Allah be pleased with him) felt bewildered and confused when he
became governor of Kufah. During the Prophet’s lifetime, he too would eat tree
leaves or the skin of a carcass. He could not bear the castles of his new life
after having tasted the pleasure of his old one in the company of the Prophet
(And indeed the Hereafter is better for you than the
present (life of this world).) (Qur’an
Therefore there is a secret to guide you in this life ----
and that is to know the triviality of this world.
(Do they think that we enlarge them in wealth and
children, We hasten unto them with good things [in this worldly life so that
they will have no share of good things in the Hereafter]? Nay, but they perceive
not) (Qur’an 23: 55-56)
When he entered the house of the Prophet (Blessings
and Peace be upon him), ‘Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) saw marks on the
Prophet’s side, which resulted from always lying down on straw, and he also noticed
the bareness of the room. His eyes swelled with tears after seeing such a
moving sight. The Messenger of Allah (bpuh), the example and leader of all, in
such a situation! It was too much for him.
And they say: ‘Why does this Messenger (Muhammad) eat food,
and walk about in the markets [like ourselves].) (Qur’an 25: 7)
He said, ‘You know, O’ Messenger of Allah, of the
lifestyle of Khosrau and Caesar? The Prophet (bpuh) replied:
"O’ son of Khattab, are you in doubt. Are you not
pleased that for us is the Hereafter and for them is this world."
lt is a just balance and a fair distribution. So let
them find their happiness in dollars, gold, silver, mansions, and cars if they
can. Verily, by Allah, they will never find it in those things.
Whosoever desires the life of the world and its
glitter; to them we shall pay in full [the wages of] their deeds therein, and
they will have no diminution therein. They are those for whom there is nothing
in the Hereafter but Fire; and vain are the deeds they did therein. And of no
effect is that which they used to doll (Qur’an