Sunday, 27 June 2010

Elements of Success

Transcribed and Summarized version of Sh. Hamza Yusuf's talk on Elements of Success
In our current state of affairs, we have come to know that failure is the opposite of success. One of the reasons Muslims fail, well one of the major reasons cited in the Glorious Qur'an al Kareem is `disputation amongst one another', which leads to failure. Also, one of the signs of the latter days, isthe amazement in ones own opinion (self opinionated people).
The essence of failure is summed up in the Qur'an as:

Disobeying Allah subhaanahu wa ta'ala,
- Disobeying His Messenger sallallahu `alaihi wa sallam, and,
- Disputation amongst each other.

For our current situation to be reversed, there are many methods, and ways to go about things. Obviously holding firmly to the Qur'an and the Sunnah is the first. But, there are elements that we need to implement in our lives that will bring to life the Islam that was lived not so long ago by our predecessors, InshaAllah.

Ten Qualities That Lead to Success:

1. Every successful person has a strong sense of purpose. What greater sense of purpose than to know that your goal is Allah subhaanahu wa ta'ala.

2. Seek out role models or mentors. These mentors instill in them a sense of possibility. What better role model than Rasulullah sallallahu 'alaihi wa

3. Strength of visualizing the goal. Rasulullah sallallahu `alaihi wa sallam had the strongest visualization of any human. We are people of `success' and this Deen is not a Religion of `failure', but a Religion of SUCCESS!

Michael Hart, the historian who wrote the 100 most influencial personalities in history, placed Muhammad sallallahu `alaihi wa sallam as number 1. The greatest witness is what your own enemies show witness to. Our example is the best example, for verily Rasulullah sallallahu `alaihi wa sallam was
`Uswatun Hasanah', the Best example; he is the model and mentor of success for all of mankind.

4. Positive sensory orientation. That you dwell on your successes, not dwelling on your failures. Remember your past successes when you were weak, and Allah subhaanahu wa ta'ala will give you victory, look at Badr.

5. Self assurance. They know that they can succeed. `La tahinuu, wa laa tahzanuu wa antum la'nawla in kuntum mu'mineen' – `Do not be weak, and do not grieve, and you are the uppermost, if you are Believers'.
Our afflictions are expiations for us. Remember at `Uhud, Rasulullah sallallahu `alaihi wa sallam said: `Your dead are in the Hell fire, our dead are in

6. They plan and organize. They know how to prioritize. Look at the most important things and take that. We have people now that argue over where you put your hands in the prayer, where your feet should be, etc.
These things are known in the books of Fiqh, we don't need to argue over them. You ask any scholar of any worth and they tell you very clearly. There's different ways to do it, because we're not supposed to get caught up in the trivial matters, because this is the Talmudic (Jewish) mind that asks `what kind of cow, what color cow' etc. All triviality.

Even in the West, they say that the `devil's in the details' (proverb). What's important is to ask `where's your heart?' Where is your heart in the Salaat?
People watching others pray during Salaat, finding mistakes with the Imaam etc. Where is our heart in the Salaat?
We plan to corrupt each other, organizations are successful, because they plan and organize each other. We are good planners when it comes to Walimah's. For instance, how many sheep will we have, how many belly dancers etc. Allahu Akbar, Takbeer, what type of takbeer? Takbeer of Salatul Janaazah, 4 of them!
7. The ability to acquire the necessary skills to succeed. We need to produce male and female scholars. Why don't we want to be from those people? The people of knowledge? Make your children people of Akhirah, not Dunya!

8. Patience. Be patient and enjoin others to patience. We have two lessons that Muslims have to learn, most of our tribulations are coming from: o Kibr, and, o Lack of patience.
Saying La ilaha Illallah does not make us special, because a Munafiq says La ilaha illallah, and yet they are lower than the Kaafir.
And remember that if you feel safe from Nifaaq, then according to Hasan al Basri rahimahullah, you are a Munafiq! The only one who feels safe from nifaaq is the munafiq.
`Umar ibn Khattaab radi'Allahu anhu went to Huthaifah ibn Yaman and asked him `Do you see in me what you see in them? Tell me by Allah, I want to know if `Umar is a Munafiq?' Huthaifah radi'Allahu anhu replied, `I don't see in you what I see in them'.

The qualities of a Munafiq (some of them include):
- They oscillate
- They remember Allah subhaanahu wa ta'ala little,
- They say on their tongues what's not in their hearts,
- They pray lazily, etc and so forth.

9. Perseverance. Be persevering. No one will have except that what he endeavors for'.

10. To love what one is doing. Radi'Allahu `anhum wa Radu `anh' – `They love Allah, and Allah is pleased with them'.

Loving Allah subhaanahu wa ta'ala and His Messenger! Spending what we love and giving from it freely. You don't reach righteousness (Birr) until you give out that which you love.
"When perfection is reached then it has to diminish, So once something is called perfect, expect it to perish."