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December 27, 2004
Fool’s Paradise

by Bint Abdul Khaliq

Happiness …what a wonderful word! We associate this word with many things,sometimes people or places. My picture of happiness may very well not be the same as yours. Each person has his own idea of what happiness entails. At different stages of our lives our perception of happiness seems to change.Perhaps we associated happiness to a certain person in our lives who really inspired us.Then perhaps that person has to move on-somehow they cant be there for us anymore and we can no longer rely on that person for happiness. We become despondent, and we believe that we are not happy until we find something or someone else to replace our empty spaces.Sometimes we attach happiness to a certain period of our lives and constantly live in the past-as you might have heard some of the older generation always saying “Those were the good old days..”

Our perception of Happiness seems to be continuously changing and clinging to some object in our lives. But are we really just fooling ourselves? What we deem as ‘happiness’,is it REALLY that? Or are we simply filling up our empty spaces with shallow perceptions because ‘everyone is supposed to think like that’. Will a million dollars make you happy? A beautiful house? A multitude of friends? What makes you happy? Think about it. Like me,you probably will deny any of the above, ‘ME..NO!that’s not me’ And yet if we cannot get the latest gadget or if we are not in the ‘in crowd’ we feel depressed.If one pimple pops up it spoils our whole day. We are always comparing what we have with something better that someone else has.And then we become unhappy. Why? Because we have attached Happiness to material things,things of this dunya and we are moving away from the source of happiness,we are moving away from ALLAH.

The closer you are to ALLAH,the happier you will be.After all,who created happiness and sadness? It is only HIM. And so it comes only from HIM. Why seek it from anywhere else?

“And that He it is Who makes (men) laugh and makes (them) weep;”( 053.043)
When we attach our happiness to worldly things or people-our happiness disappears when the circumstances change. This cannot be true happiness. It is merely temporary and deceiving.But if we now attach our Happiness to our CREATOR-we will always have the key to happiness with us.Our life must be in accordance to HIS Happiness and it will follow automatically that we will be happy.Come sunshine or rain-we will have ALLAH to turn to and we believe firmly that everything is from ALLAH.We will be CONTENT…and even if we face difficulties in this world,we will bear it patiently knowing that ALLAH knows best and we will sincerely pray and hope for the everlasting happiness and delight awaiting the believers.

I found this story on the net and felt it appropriate to mention it here:

There was a CEO of a major American corporation who had attained wealth, power, prestige, and position but felt bitterly unhappy. He would toss and turn in bed at night, unable to sleep. He was impressed to find among the company's employees a young Muslim man of modest position and salary who was always happy and cheerful. He would eat in peace, sleep in peace, and would come to work and go home smiling. Not once did he see this man with a dark _expression on his face.

He brought the man into his office and asked him: "What is it with you that you are so happy all the time?"

The man replied: "By God, I know my Lord and I know my job. I believe in God and therefore I have peace."

The CEO then asked: "Do you have anything that might guide me or show me the way?”

The man took the CEO by the hand and took him to an Islamic center where he learned about Islam and had the religion explained to him. Ultimately, the CEO declared: "I bear witness that there is no God but Allah and I bear witness that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah."

As soon as he said this, he broke into tears and said: "I have just felt happiness that I had never before felt before in my whole life."

Subhanallah…If we want to be happy we just need be good Muslims.Nowadys we seem to be doing the opposite-seeking happiness in things that are displeasing to ALLAH.Nastaghfirallah.That is not TRUE happiness,it is just fleeting and causes nothing but restlessness in our hearts. It isn’t worth it. ALLAH’S pleasure is our ultimate goal.We are not here to please our nafs. Let us never forget that Inshallah.Lets stop living in a fool’s paradise.

"Truly, the righteous will be in delight. And truly the wicked will be in Hell." [Sűrah al-Infitâr: 13-14]


of and relating to...
Justoju said

MashaAllah...I LOVE THIS TOPIC!

I had commented on this topic a while ago for Brother Gillette's "The New and Improved Islamic Organization" piece. I am too lazy to comment again so I am just going to copy the old comment and paste it here. Waste not, want not. :)

(http://www.hidayaonline.com/badr/mt-comments.cgi?entry_id=50)

As human beings we are born in a state of 'want' and are constantly wanting something. We focus all our hopes on that one thing and feel that if only we could acquire that one object we would be happy. That object would magically make us better, and we would be happy. We see others that have that object and envy them, we want that object and feel that once we have it we too will be envied by others. It becomes a matter of self-regard, if we have that special something then we are special.

But sadly, the most disappointing thing in the world is to get what you want because it is guaranteed to disappoint you. NOTHING is as great as we imagine it to be, NOTHING can live up to our expectations of it. And acquiring that object doesnt bring happiness, it just makes you shift your attention over to a new object. You just start running after another object in hopes of acquiring happiness through its acquirement. Instead of stopping and examining the process, the habit, we keep on running after new objects. We try to fill up the void by turning to material physical things because
(1) they are more easily percieved to be 'there', and
(2) because we are quite thoroughly brainwashed into believeing that they have a causal relationship with happiness.

You feel that if you could just get that car, or house, or dress, or shoe, or hot guy/girl you will be happy. You weave fantasies around that object celebrating and heralding its perfection and ability to make you happy. Then you get it and you realize that it wasnt IT. You realize that your newly acquired object isnt all that special after all, and because it isnt special you stop feeling special for owning it. Self-regard is one of the greatest motivators of human thought, we strive, at all costs, to keep ourselves feeling special and important and attractive and intelligent and pious and humorous and compassionate and humane etc etc etc.

So you might be thinking, "Thats true; true happiness can only be found within not from without. We need to stop running after external things and start focusing on whats inside, that is the only way to achieve happiness."
But think again.

We are human beings. We are full of insecurities, weaknesses, cognitive blunders, and plagued by a hyper-active nafs (not to mention the incessant whispers of Shaitan--aoodhobillah). We are not DESIGNED to find happiness within, to remain unbiased about the external world and its events. We MUST have a constant, we MUST have something to love, to run after, to hunger for, to wish to attain. If we dont, we go mad from lack of purpose. Simple human nature. So, it is necessary to have an object of Love.

But then the question is WHAT should that object be? We have already established that people and objects of this duniya are transitory and bound to lead to disappointment. They can never live up to the absolute "image" of perfection that we bestow upon them. So basically, the perfect (not to mention only) candidate for the position of love-object is Allah (SWT). He is absolute in His perfection, eternal, and will never ever let us down, or hurt us, or misguide us. He is EXACTLY the type of love-object that human nature demands for survival. We were CONSTRUCTED to NEED TO love Him. When we love anything else we are simply going astray. We are simply running after the wrong objects. We spend our entire lives searching for that one thing that makes us happy when He has been there the entire time, waiting patiently, lovingly nurturing us. So close and obvious, yet so bewildering and ungraspable. He is the perfect Beloved.

on December 27, 2004 6:22 AM
Amani said

Masha'Allah great article. It's so very true. It's the reason why so many people are on antidepressants .

Subhan'Allah I've been working on an article related to this topic and was going to send it into Hidaya but I lost it (stupid floppy disks!) and now have to rework it. Maybe I'll still get to finish it, insha'Allah.

on December 27, 2004 10:54 AM
Humayun said

Asalamalikom,

Beautifulllll article! I sure needed a reminder like this. JazakAllah Khairun for the reminder sister.

I'll leave with some relevent quotes by Ibn Taymmia (rahimullah):

"Whoever desires everlasting bliss, let him adhere firmly to the threshold of servitude"

"In this world there is a paradise, whoever does not enter it will not enter the Paradise of the Hereafter."

"In this world, man finds in the remembrance of Allah, praising Him and worshipping Him, a delight that is incomparable to anything else."

May Allah the Mighty and Majestic give us the ability to internal these quotes. Ameen.

on December 27, 2004 6:06 PM
Rami said

Asalaam Aleikum Warahmatullah Wabarakatu

This is from Surat Al-Kahf:


"44. There, the (only) protection comes from Allah, the True One. He is the Best to reward, and the Best to give success.

45. Set forth to them the similitude of the life of this world: It is like the rain which we send down from the skies: the earth's vegetation absorbs it, but soon it becomes dry stubble, which the winds do scatter: it is (only) Allah who prevails over all things.

46. Wealth and sons are allurements of the life of this world: But the things that endure, good deeds, are best in the sight of thy Lord, as rewards, and best as (the foundation for) hopes. "

Wasalaam Warahmatullah Wabarakatu

on December 27, 2004 7:46 PM
Bint Abdul Khaliq said

As Salaamu Alaikum

What beautiful advices MASHALLAH.Allah reward you all.

Was Salaam

on December 28, 2004 3:30 PM
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