Connecting Dunya with Akhira, {Worldly life with Hereafter}

Maqsood Ahmed, OBE

The life ‘Hereafter’ is everlasting but life on earth is temporary. The worldly life is only a means to preparing ourselves for the Hereafter by performing good, permissible and ordained deeds and refraining from all the prohibitions, decreed by Allah (SWT).
There is no doubt that the Day of Judgement is the final day of accountability for mankind’s deeds of life on earth. It is also a fact that after one’s death there is no opportunity to improve upon one’s worldly performance.
Preparation for Hereafter is only possible if we are fully engaged in this life and make the most of the resources, facilities and favours that Allah (SWT) has bestowed upon us and live and work within the parameters of the guidance and support Allah Almighty has provided.
This preparation does not include self-denial, renunciation, and abstinence. Allah (SWT) encourages us to have a share in this world (28:77). We are permitted to ask Allah (SWT) for goodness in this life, therefore, this should facilitate preparation for the Hereafter and not cause us to neglect our duties, obligations and responsibilities, towards various categories of creations including kin folks and humanity in general, in the world. There is no harm in enjoying comfort and pleasure in the world, within the Islamic hodood, which Allah (SWT) has provided.
Allah has guided us to seek:
Our Lord, give us goodness in this life and goodness in the Hereafter and save us from the punishment of the Hellfire.
Allah (SWT) assures the believers that:
As for those who choose the Hereafter as their priority, and work righteousness, while believing, their efforts will be appreciated (17:19).
Moreover, the test of exercising our free will and using the intellect, knowledge and discretion of choosing the right paths is dependent upon living a full and successful worldly life, to demonstrate that we ‘listen and we obey’. This is what distinguishes human beings from the rest of the creations as the best of creations, capable of thinking, pondering and arriving at the right decisions.
Notwithstanding the so conspicuous nature of this particular message, Allah Almighty who is so Companionate and Merciful, has categorically reminded His (SWT) slaves in this respect, as in the cases of all other aspects of successful living, and warned that:
This worldly life is nothing but diversion and amusement. Verily, the home of the Hereafter is the true life if only they knew (Surah al-Ankabut – 29:64)
In sura al-Hadid Allah(SWT) further explains:
“….this world is merely sport and diversion and adornment and an object of your boasting with one another, and a rivalry in the multiplication of riches and children…… In the Hereafter, there is (either) grievous chastisement (or) forgiveness from Allah and (His) good pleasure. The life of this world is nothing but delusion (57:20).
Allah (SWT) also points out in sura al-Imran:
“Men are naturally tempted by the lure of women, children, and treasures of gold and silver, horses of mark, cattle and plantations. These are the enjoyments in the life of this world; but with Allah lies a goodly abode to return to. (3:14-15)
Both the above ayats sum up the following about worldly life, which is:
•Merely sport.
•An object of your boasting with one another, and
•A rivalry in the multiplication of riches and children
•Temptation by the lure of women, children,
•Temptation of the treasure of gold or silver
•Temptation of horses of mark, cattle and plantations
•Enjoyments in the life of this world
•let your possessions and your offspring not make you negligent of Allah’s remembrance. For whoso does that, will be the losers (63:9).
All the above amounts to the rejection of the concept of resurrection in a way i.e. not believing in the day of judgement and accountability, hence no preparations.
Moreover, to be tempted to achieve all the above one is likely to transgress and engross in prohibitions, for example, they will become greedy, selfish, unjust, uncaring, and corrupt, acquiring many negative and undesirable traits and qualities.
Allah (SWT) then grants them all if that is what they desire, without any share in Hereafter.
Whoever intends (to have) the harvest of the Hereafter, We will increase in his harvest; and whoever intends (to have) the harvest of the world (only), We will give him thereof, while in the Hereafter he will have no share (Surah ash-Shuraa, ayat 20).
However Allah Almighty commands his slaves to use the wealth and all the means He (SWT) has granted, to acquire abode of Hereafter (by doing good deeds and using the resources as commanded) but by remaining active participants in this world and claiming ‘your share’ in this world, as well.
Allah (SWT) says:
Seek by means of the wealth that Allah has granted you the Abode of the Hereafter, but forget not your share in this world and do good as Allah has been good to you and do not strive to create mischief in the land, for Allah loves not those who create mischief (28:77).
As in the case of worldly affairs people generally use various currencies, resources and methods to buy and sell. Allah (SWT) uses the same analogy to invite us to use surplus and precious resources to exchange for ‘currency of righteousness’ to acquire the abode of the Hereafter.
Never shall you attain to righteousness unless you spend out of that which you love; and whatever you spend, Allah surely knows it well (3:93).
Allah (SWT) also describes this as a goodly loan (Qarz-e-Hasna), to be lent to Allah (SWT) which He (SWT) will return by increasing it manifold (with which to acquire abode hereafter).
Who is he that will lend to Allah a goodly loan? So He will increase it manifold for him, and he will have a generous reward (57:19, 57:12).
However if one does not have surplus cash, so to speak, then Allah (SWT) provides another profitable opportunity to trade with Him(SWT).
Besides goodly loans (Qarz-e- Hasna), Allah (SWT) directs His servants for investments in trade, commerce and pledge transactions to achieve bargains and benefits.
Allah (SWT) say in Sura AsSaff : ayat No.10:
Believers, shall I direct you to a commerce that will deliver you from a grievous chastisement (61:10)?
To earn a profit, people usually deploy their ‘wealth, time, labour and talent’. Allah (SWT) directs believers to trade faith and jihad (all-encompassing) in the cause of Allah (SWT) for a profitable business (tijarat). If one spends and invests all the resources in the way of Allah (SWT), (which have been granted to him by Allah Almighty in the first place) they will attain profit, in the eternal life of Hereafter in the form of i) immunity from the punishment of Allah, (SWT) ii) forgiveness of sins, and iii) entry into the Paradise.
Al la h (SWT) has called the relationship between Him and His servants a contract to sell their lives and possessions to Allah (SWT) i.e. absolute submission and compliance with Allah’s (SWT) commandments in return for accepting His (SWT) promise that He (SWT) would give them the abode in life after death and rewards in this word as well. In the following verse, Allah (SWT) assures them again that:
Have faith in Allah and His Messenger and strive in the Way of Allah with your possessions and your lives. That is better for you if you only knew (61:11).
And eventually, on the ‘very day some faces shall be radiant with joy and well pleased with their striving’ to see the best results in the Hereafter of their deeds in the world
On that very Day, some faces shall be radiant with joy, well-pleased with their striving (in Dunya) (88: 8-9).
“May Allah (SWT) grant us the perseverance and vision
to Begin with the End in our mind?”

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