Happiness, health and peace of mind: those are the basic hopes and ultimate endeavours of every human being. Naturally, we are in continuous pursuit of happiness, health and peace of mind, but unfortunately for many of us, life often seems a constant struggle. Meanwhile, people tend to be in an unremitting quest for material possessions, making that the focus of their lives, while health and happiness seem ever elusive.
When a certain idea is repeated frequently enough, it gradually becomes engraved in our minds. Whether this idea is true or false, if we allow it, it soon takes root in our beliefs and becomes a mindset, or part of what we think of as ‘common sense’. Through the media, school curricula and workplaces, all day long we are fed a diet of the ‘ virtues’ of consumerism. The value of a human being has been reduced to what he or she owns – money, car, house, fame, position or even worse, to the way he or she looks; a man should be handsome and attractive, while a woman should be beautiful, with a nice, slim figure .
Blindly copying the opinions, customs and manners of others can be very dangerous. It can cause us to hold false beliefs and to submit to erroneous modes of thinking. For us as Muslims,
besides striving for success in this world, we also seek the eternal happiness and bliss of paradise:
“And of them there are some who say: Our Rabb, give us in this world that which is good and in the hereafter that which is good, and save us from the torment of the fire.”
(Qur’an 2: 201)
The question is: How can we reach worldly success along with eternal satisfaction? What is our own Islamic way, the “True Secret” to temporal as well as everlasting happiness?
Do you realize what the ‘True Secret’ to success is?
It is sincerity to Allah azza wa jal
Sincerity and integrity are required to straighten out worldly matters. Sincerity is a prerequisite for justice to prevail and for corruption to end. Life decays without sincerity because in its absence, hypocrisy, materialism and selfishness will flourish.
Sincerity is a result of true faith and submissiveness to Allah azza wa jal, and this is so clear in the first chapter of Qur’ an:
You [Allah, alone] we worship, and You [alone] we ask for help [ for each and every thing]
( Qur ‘an 1: 5)
We are ordered to repeat this chapter at least seventeen times each day in our five obligatory prayers.
Your sincerity is between you and Allah azza wa jal. No one else can see it, and no one can check it. It is not a mere word that you utter with your tongue; it is a deep feeling rooted inside your heart. Just like a seed that has to be buried before it can grow and flourish, sincerity has to be kept deep within your heart, unseen by others.
This is your own seed that you should care for and water daily with love, devotion, prayers, supplication and detachment from worldly attractions and material possessions.
There is a chapter in the Qur’an called al-Ikhlas (Sincerity):
Say [O Muhammad]: He is Allah, the One, the Samad [the Self-Sufficient Master, Whom all creatures need, and Who Himself is in need of nothing]. He begets not, nor was He begotten; and there is none co-equal or comparable unto Him
This chapter is equivalent to one-third of the Qur’ an, according to the following hadith, which is a statement or action of Prophet Muhammad salallahu alaihi wa sallam that was remembered and recorded by his Companions and followers: «By the One in Whose Hand is my soul, it [the Qur’anic chapter al-Ikhla~] is equivalent to a third of the Qur’an.» (Bukhari)
There is no wonder that this chapter has such weight and importance, since it holds the meaning of existence and the key to the only truly successful way of living.