Dua for this life and afterlife
رَبَّنَا آتِنَا فِي الدُّنْيَا حَسَنَةً وَفِي الْآخِرَةِ حَسَنَةً وَقِنَا عَذَابَ النَّارِ
Rabbanaaa aatina fid dunyaa hasanatanw wa fil aakhirati hasanatanw wa qinaa azaaban Naar
“Our Lord, give us in this world [that which is] good and in the Hereafter [that which is] good and protect us from the punishment of the Fire.”
Surah Baqarah Ayat 201
Reflection on this du’a
It’s very easy for us to become so busy and so distracted that we forget to reflect on our existence on this planet. We begin to believe what we’re going through is everything and give more weight to the present than it actually holds. This seems especially true when looking at it from the perspective of the number of people that have come and gone throughout the centuries. It is estimated over 107 billion people have ever existed on earth, but how many of those names end up being written about in the history books?
This is not to relinquish responsibility, as some may be questioning how meaningless life may seem. You can still enrich the lives of others, minimize suffering, and seek to be a positive source of life. You still have a real impact, and that should not be forgotten or understated. It is in realizing there’s a final destination that gives life a definite meaning and purpose. Allah mentions this many times in the Qur’an, “Know that the life of this world is but amusement and diversion and adornment and boasting to one another and competition in increase of wealth and children – like the example of a rain whose [resulting] plant growth pleases the tillers; then it dries and you see it turned yellow; then it becomes [scattered] debris. And in the Hereafter is severe punishment and forgiveness from Allah and approval. And what is the worldly life except the enjoyment of delusion.” (Surah Hadid Ayat 20) and in Surah Ghafir, “O my people, this worldly life is only [temporary] enjoyment, and indeed, the Hereafter – that is the home of [permanent] settlement.” (Surah Ghafir Ayat 39)
Seeing life through this lens can help us detach from our selfish desires and gives us the space we require to be at peace. We see how foolish it can be to get upset over small matters. Are we justified to be as angry or upset as we get when we break a glass? Is there any point in cursing the event that already transpired or should we just embrace things as they happen and move on? By keeping the bigger picture in mind, we can live life more fully and appreciate our existence. Being aware that we have a limited time on earth is a gift as it allows us to be grateful for this middle part of this journey because we know it will end.
Also, realize death is not something that happens to us in the future but rather every second that passes us by is a piece of us that has died. This begs the question; how would you like to spend your scarce and precious supply of time on earth? Would you like to focus on negativity and hold onto emotions of hate, anger, and jealousy? Or would it be better for you to just let things go and to let things be? We need to strike a balance to enjoy whatever creations Allah has made for us on Earth while keeping our discipline and desires tethered to reaching the ultimate end goal which is Jannah.
There is a story of a very rich man who died. At his funereal, a colleague asked, “I wonder how much he left?” to which someone replied, “I believe he left it all.” We need to be wiser in our pursuits, being money motivated is fine. Wanting financial security for you and your family’s well-being is an honorable mission. It’s when you’re only motivated by money that it becomes a problem. Seeking enjoyment is fine, Allah does not say we are forbidden from seeking halal pleasures. In Surah Rahman, Allah repeatedly says, fabia ala i rabbikuma tukadzibanmeaning, “So which of the favors of your Lord would you deny?” (Surah Rahman Ayat 13) referring to the many gifts he left for us on earth. The problems arise when you only live for pleasure and forget your duty towards Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala.
Remember we can have all the wealth, children, friends, and status but when we leave this earth all the things which we worked tirelessly for will cease to matter. All the power and influence we seek to hold and covet will be useless. Money and power is only an instrument to create change and it would be wise for us to acquire it to do good and leave a legacy that says we served humanity well just as we learned Prophet Sulaiman (as) did. In the end, the only account that matters will be the account of your deeds. When we make du’a let us not only be driven by short-sighted requests, it is better for us to ask for both good in this life but to also remember and ask to receive good in the afterlife. That’s the beauty contained within this du’a.
Let us pray that Allah grants us all with courage and strength, to bless us with complete iman, and to forgive us where we have erred. May he shower peace and blessings upon all the Prophets who had to struggle to show us what’s possible for those who put complete trust and belief in Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala. They dedicated their life’s work and etched out a chapter in the history of mankind that would’ve otherwise remained unwritten. It’s because of their selfless sacrifice that we can proudly call ourselves Muslims and live a life with faith, hope, and good values.