Following speech (in Urdu) was delivered by Dr. Amtul Qudoos Farhat, at the 38th Annual Ahmadiyya Muslim Convention on Sunday June 22, 2014 at the International Centre, Mississauga, Canada
Translation in to English by Ansa Talat
Ten ways to achieve success in daily life
According to different schools of thought success is of two kinds: final/permanent success and worldly success.
In the light of the teachings of the Holy Qur’an and Sunnah, our final and permanent success is solely to accumulate best assets for the eternal life. The Holy Qur’an has established the piety of self as the standard of such success.
“Verily, he, indeed, will prosper who purifies himself.” 87:15
“He, indeed, prospers who purifies it.”91:10
“Verily, for the righteous is decreed a triumph.” 78:32
“For them are glad tidings in the present life and also in the Hereafter – there is no changing the words of Allah – that indeed is the supreme achievement.” 10:65
“O ye who believe! Fear Allah and seek the means of approach unto Him and strive in His way that you may prosper.” 5:39
“Say, the bad and the good are not alike, even though the abundance of the bad may please thee. So be mindful of your duty to Allah, O men of understanding that you may prosper.” 5:101
Thus “Successful indeed are the believers.” 23:2;
“And whoso obeys Allah and His Messenger, and fears Allah, and takes Him as a shield for protection, it is they who will be successful.” 24:53;
“Verily, those who tremble with the fear of their Lord.” 23:59
“..And whoso obeys Allah and His Messenger shall, surely, attain a supreme triumph.” 33:72
From the worldly point of view good health, satisfaction of the heart, good job, wealth and riches, progeny and fame are considered measures of success. Getting a good husband and proving to be a good wife and mother is big success for a girl.
Principles of success:
There are many ways/principles in our daily lives that can make the path to success easier. The more one follows these rules, the more deserving of success one becomes. Just as abstaining from falsehood removes many wrongs/sins; in the same way adopting some rules of success automatically applies the remaining rules in our lives; the foremost among them is the concept of prayer.
Hazrat Masih Mau’udas says that prayer is the key to every success; the condition being that the person, while utilizing all resources and capabilities, should supplicate with a firm belief and complete faith to the being, whose Omnipotence is supreme in comparison to human abilities. When God’s Will helps in the practical field, it makes impossible things become possible. Pray yourself and write letters to the Khalifa of the time requesting prayers.
The Holy Qur’an says:
Say to the disbelievers, ‘But for your prayer to Him my Lord would not care for you at all…”25:78
According to Hadith, “It is a sin to abandon praying.”
“It can make impossible turn into possible, O my philosophers, behold the power of prayer.”
2. Maintaining health:
Good health is the biggest blessing of Allah, which enhances the mental and physical capabilities.
The Holy Qur’an differentiates between lawful and unlawful and also teaches about pure food and moderation. It says:
…eat of the good things that We have provided for you, and transgress not therein, lest My wrath descend upon you….” 20:82
Purity means freshness; freshness that perishes before the food even reaches us. For this reason, the Khalifas have urged to plant fruit trees and vegetables in the house. According to Hadith, the reward of a person who plants a fruit tree continues for many generations.
Sweets are used excessively and abundantly in our households; we need to practice moderation in their use. According to recent research excessive use of sugar is more harmful that excessive use of oil/fats.
3. Preparing to be a good wife and a good mother:
We strive for good education and career from childhood, but do not make any preparation for becoming a good mother and wife. We should learn about the rules and principles of marital life from early age too, for example cooking, household chores, values, spirit of sacrifice, upbringing of children and rules of parenting etc.
As we accept a boss in our professional life without any reluctance, we should be mentally prepared to accept a compassionate life partner as boss of the household. A good mother has paradise under her feet on the one hand and on the other hand she becomes the guarantor of the best new generation for the nation and country.
4. Familiarity with the contemporary era:
According to a Hadith, a believer seeks IlmulAbdan as well (Bukhari) which is all physical knowledge of the era. The biggest need of our era is technology, and we cannot make worldly progress without getting familiar with it. It is also vital for religious progress. For instance just take the example of Alislam website which carries a limitless wealth of knowledge which is much more than can be gained from thousands of libraries, and that can be used at any time.
Technology is also “the best weapon” for “jihad of the pen”.
5. Studying the lives of successful people:
A Hadith relates that, a person follows the ways of his close friend. (Abu Da’ud Kitabul Adab)
The life of successful people holds the position of a school; their acts of practice and behaviour conceal many lessons of success. Study such people, meet them and observe how they think, speak and act.
Study the autobiographies of famous people in literature.
6. Best use of time:
Hazrath Khalifatul-Masih IIra says: Time is a limited duration; its every moment should be dedicated for achieving success. Review your day before sleeping to learn that how much time you spent in constructive activities and how much in useless activities.
7. Self-control and patience (overcoming anger) is important for success:
Controlling one’s anger is a great Jihad. (Bukhari)
Allah does not like any sip more than the one that a person takes as a result of controlling his anger. (Ibn Abi Shaiba, Vol 7, page 88)
Hadith advises us to recite “I seek refuge with Allah, from Satan the rejected”, watch your reflection in the mirror and get away from the scene. Do not show immediate reaction to the situation that invokes anger. Talking without thinking causes problems. Give yourself some time because acting in excitement often results in embarrassment.
8. Being grateful:
Be grateful to Allah and His people …says the Holy Qur’an (22:39)
The Holy Prophetsa has said: Words of goodness are charity (Bukhari& Muslim)
Thus be thankful to people for their smallest favor, help or support and be grateful to Allah at all times. Consider all His blessings that He has bestowed on us.
“Which, then, of the favors of your Lord will ye twain deny?”Holy Qur’an 55:14
9. Be humble/ modest:
Humility and modesty are the signs of strength and maturity. The Holy Qur’an says:
And walk not in the earth haughtily, for thou canst not thus rend the earth, nor canst thou reach the mountains in height”17:38
Hadith relates that, the one who adopted humility gains ascent to the seventh skies. (KinzalIman Vol2, Page 25)
Modesty makes a lasting impression on people’s hearts. Hazrat Masih Mau’ud says: Pose as if you are wrong even when you are the one who is right.
Jo khaak me miley, Usey milta hai aashna… Aye aazmaane waale, ye nusqa bhi aazma (English translation: The one who humbles himself to dust attains the Beloved; O seeker of the truth, try this recommendation as well).
10. Preparation for the hereafter
Is the biggest, final and absolute success: We should not forget that preparation for the hereafter is the biggest, final and absolute success.
“O ye who believe! Let not your wealth and your children divert you from the remembrance of Allah. And whoever does so – it is they who are the losers.”63:10
“Wealth and children are ornaments of the life of this world. But enduring good works are better in the sight of thy Lord in respect of immediate reward, and better in respect of future hope.” 18:47