Death has Ruled You Out Against Others – Yet at Some Point it Shall Rule Others Out Against You

 

الحمد لله رب العالمين، وصلى الله وسلم على نبينا محمد وعلى آله وأصحابه أجمعين، أما بعد

 

The following excerpts are two beneficial reminders of the importance of preparing oneself for the inevitability of death, along with a mention of the reality of the life of this world and the ultimate end of our journey from this world; to that of the Hereafter.

 

Shaikh Muhammad bin Saalih al-‘Uthaimeen (rahimahullaah) said:

 

“A person should reflect upon his situation and his ending in this world, and this ending is not the (absolute) end, rather behind it is an objective greater than it – and it is the Hereafter.

So a person should always reflect upon death, not upon the basis of parting from loved ones and that which one is familiar with, because this view is deficient. Rather upon the basis of parting from action and to sow in cultivation for the Hereafter, since if he looks with this viewpoint, he becomes prepared and increases in action for the Hereafter. Yet if he looks with the first viewpoint, he becomes saddened and the affair will grieve him, and he becomes as is according to the statement of the poet:

 

There is no agreeable pleasance in life as long as it is overwhelmed

Its delights are by way of an ever reminder of death and old age

 

So his reflection is upon this basis, he does not increase with it except in regret and a sense of being overwhelmed. As for if he reflects upon it upon the basis of the first,[1] and it is to reflect upon death in order to become prepared for it and to carry out actions for the Hereafter; then this does not increase him in sadness; rather it increases him upon having interest and in turning to Allaah, The Mighty and Majestic. Therefore when a person turns to his Lord, then his chest increases in delightful joy, and his heart in tranquility.”[2]

 

Shaikh Muhammad bin Haadi Al-Madkhali (hafidhahullaah) said:

 

“O servants of Allaah, we are undeniably travelers in this abode (worldly life), and that which is customary is that every traveler makes preparations, then proceeds in securing his riding beast and prepares his provision.

Know; may Allaah have mercy upon you, that our journey from this world – the abode of passageway is to the abode of the Hereafter – the abode of residence, and you should know also – may Allaah have mercy upon me and you that the riding beast which you mount is; the nights and the days. So every day that passes you by, then you indeed draw closer to the Hereafter by a juncture, and due to it you distance from the world by yet another.

Know; may Allaah have mercy upon you, that the provision (for the journey) is indeed the obedience of Allaah, The Majestic and Most High.

(As occurs in some lines of poetry:)

 

Indeed Allaah has servants who are intelligent

They left off the life of this world and feared the tribulations

They looked into them and when they came to know that it is not a homeland for the living being (that it is not a dwelling for the living)

They made it as a gulf and took righteous actions within it as vessels

 

Indeed we are delighted with the days through which we traverse, and each day that passes draws the appointed time (death) ever closer. Hence the well-fortified astute one is he who sets out in securing his riding beast and preparing his provision.

Know; may Allaah have mercy upon me and you, that the provision which one is in need of is a singular provision, indeed it is the Taqwa of Allaah, The Majestic and Most High. So the Taqwa of Allaah does not adjoin the heart of an individual except that it reaches the mercy of Allaah, The Majestic and Most High, and the blessing which comes about due to that is that it ensures everlasting happiness for its companion and complete and perfect tranquility and a life of plenty and opulence in Paradise whose width is that of the Heavens and the earth, which has been prepared for the Muttaqeen (those who are fearful and dutiful to Allaah).

Due to this, and due to other than it, a person knows that he cannot do without Taqwa, in particular at the point of crossing over the Fire (upon the Bridge), may Allaah exempt us and you from it (i.e. the Fire), from which no one will be saved on that day except the Muttaqoon. He, The Majestic and Most High, said:

 

ثُمَّ نُنَجِّي الَّذِينَ اتَّقَوا وَّنَذَرُ الظَّالِمِينَ فِيهَا جِثِيًّا

((Then We shall save those who were fearful [of Allaah and dutiful to Him]. And We shall leave the wrongdoers therein on their knees.)) (Maryam: 72)

 

O servants of Allaah, hasten in the performance of actions whilst you are in respite from the appointed time (death), and know that death has indeed ruled you out – against others, and it shall rule others out – against you.

So where is the one who yesterday was with us – yet was conveyed to Allaah and was thus lodged in a grave, bound within it with his actions. So if he was righteous; he will sleep a pleasant sleep, awaiting the nearness of the Hour, rather he will say; ‘O Lord establish the Hour.’ Yet if he was other than that, then he will hope for distance (from it) and escape from it, whilst he will have no refuge from it.

O Allaah, we ask You by Your Beautiful Names and Your Lofty Attributes and by Your Greatest Name by way of which if You are called upon, then You answer (in response), and if You are asked of by way of it then You give, that; You make us from Your pious servants, those who hold back from this abode, those who take from it what is of their sufficiency for the abode of the Hereafter.”[3]

 

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[1] This is what appears in the text of the book; however what is meant here is one’s reflection upon the basis of the second type.

[2] Sharh al-Mumti’ ‘alaa Zaad al-Mustaqni’ vol 5 p.231-232

[3] An excerpt taken from an audio lecture entitled: ‘Khair az-Zaad at-Taqwa’.

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