Thursday 18 Rabi‘ at-akhir 1442 - 3 December 2020
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A comment on the phrase “Muhammad (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) is not mentioned at times of hardship but ease will be granted”

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Publication : 12-11-2020

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Question

Is the following phrase valid from an Islamic point of view: “Muhammad (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) is not mentioned at times of hardship but ease will be granted”? I already know the virtue of sending a great deal of blessings upon the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) in the hadith, “…Then your worries would be taken care of and your sin would be forgiven.” Is there a connection between mentioning the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) and things being made easy? Isn’t Allah (may He be glorified and exalted) the One Who makes things easy?

Answer

Praise be to Allah.

Firstly: The matter of whether things are made easy or difficult is in the hand of Allah alone

One of the things concerning which there is no doubt is that the matter of whether things are made easy or difficult is in the hand of Allah alone, with no partner or associate, and no one has any power over that except Allah.

Many texts affirm this fact.

Allah (may He be exalted) is the One Who makes it easy for man to emerge from his mother’s womb, and it is He Who has made the Qur’an easy to memorize and understand.

Allah says (interpretation of the meaning):

Cursed is man; how disbelieving is he

From what substance did He create him

From a sperm-drop He created him and destined for him

Then He eased the way for him

[‘Abasa 80:17-20]

And We have certainly made the Qur'an easy for remembrance, so is there any who will remember

[al-Qamar 54:17].

When Allah commanded Moosaa to go to Pharaoh, he asked his Lord to make it easy for him.

Allah (may He be exalted) said:

“ ‘Go to Pharaoh. Indeed, he has transgressed.’

[Moses] said, "My Lord, fill my heart with courage and steadfastness

And ease for me my task”

]Taa-Haa 20:24-26].

The Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) used to ask his Lord to make guidance easy for him [to adhere to it].

At-Tirmidhi narrated in his Sunan (3551) that ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Abbaas (may Allah be pleased with him) said: The Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) used to say in his supplication: “O Lord, help me and do not help others against me; support me and do not support others against me; plan for me and do not help others plan against me; guide me and make guidance easy for me…”

This hadith was classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh Ibn Maajah (3088).

One day, the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) bade farewell to one of his companions who wanted to travel, and he prayed for him, asking Allah to make good easy for him wherever he was.

At-Tirmidhi narrated in his Sunan (3444) that Anas said: A man came to the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) and said: O Messenger of Allah, I want to travel, so give me something that will help me on my journey. He said: “May Allah supply you with taqwa (piety).” He said: Give me more. He said: “May he forgive your sin.” He said: Give me more, may my father and mother be sacrificed for you. He said: “May He make good easy for you wherever you are.”

This hadith was classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh at-Tirmidhi (2739).

The Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) used to teach his companions to seek guidance (istikhaarah) in all affairs, which includes asking one’s Lord to make something easy for him if it is good for him.

Al-Bukhaari narrated in his Saheeh (7390) that Jaabir ibn ‘Abdillah (may Allah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) used to teach his companions to make istikhaarah in all things, just as he used to teach them soorahs from the Qur’an. He said: “If any one of you is concerned about a decision he has to make, then let him pray two rak‘ahs of non-obligatory prayer, then say: Allaahumma inni astakheeruka bi ‘ilmika wa astaqdiruka bi qudratika wa as’aluka min fadlika, fa innaka taqdiru wa laa aqdir, wa ta‘lamu wa laa a‘lam, wa anta ‘allaam al-ghuyoob. Allaahumma fa in kunta ta‘lamu haadhal-amra (then the matter should be mentioned by name) khayran li fi aajil amri wa aajilihi (or: fi deeni wa ma‘aashi wa ‘aaqibati amri) faqdurhu li wa yassirhu li thumma baarik li fihi. Allaahumma wa in kunta ta‘lamu annahu sharrun li fi deeni wa ma‘aashi wa ‘aaqibati amri (or: fi ‘aajili amri wa aajilihi) fasrifni ‘anhu [wasrafhu ‘anni] waqdur li al-khayr haythu kaana thumma radini bihi (O Allah, I seek Your guidance [in making a choice] by virtue of Your knowledge, and I seek ability by virtue of Your power, and I ask You of Your great bounty. You have power, I have none. And You know, I know not. You are the Knower of hidden things. O Allah, if in Your knowledge, this matter (then it should be mentioned by name) is good for me both in this world and in the Hereafter (or: in my religion, my livelihood and my affairs), then ordain it for me, make it easy for me, and bless it for me. And if in Your knowledge it is bad for me and for my religion, my livelihood and my affairs (or: for me both in this world and the next), then turn me away from it, [and turn it away from me], and ordain for me the good wherever it may be and make me pleased with it).”

Nothing is ever made easy except by the permission of Allah alone.

As the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) used to say: “O Allah, nothing is easy except what You make easy, and if You willed, it You could make rugged land smooth.”

Narrated by Ibn Hibban in his Saheeh (2427); classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in as-Silsilat as-Saheehah (2886).

Umm al-Mu’mineen ‘Aa’ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) said: Ask Allah for everything, even a sandal-strap, for if Allah does not make it easy [for you to obtain it], it will not be easy.

Narrated by Abu Ya‘la in his Musnad (4560); classed as hasan by Shaykh al-Albaani in as-Silsilah as-Saheehah (3/540).

Secondly: the phrase “Muhammad (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) is not mentioned at times of hardship but ease will be granted” is an ambiguous phrase that may be interpreted in a sound way or a wrong way

The phrase that the questioner mentions – “Muhammad (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) is not mentioned at times of hardship but ease will be granted” – is an ambiguous phrase that may be interpreted in a sound way or a wrong way, so it is not permissible to say it in this way. That is for the following reasons:

Firstly, it may be understood that what the speaker means is that he believes that mere mention of the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) will make difficult things easy. This applies even if we assume that the speaker is not basing it on a false belief – like the extreme Sufis – as there is no evidence to support that.

Secondly: if what he means is that he believes that by virtue of sending blessings upon the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him), Allah will relieve him of distress and remove his hardship, this is sound.

This is seen in the hadith which was narrated by ‘Abd ibn Humayd in his Musnad (170) from Ubayy ibn Ka‘b (may Allah be pleased with him), who said: O Messenger of Allah, I often send blessings upon you; how much of my supplication should I allocate to sending blessings upon you? He said: “Whatever you wish.” He said: One quarter? He said: “Whatever you wish, and if you do more, that will be good.” He said: Half? He said: “Whatever you wish, and if you do more, that will be good.” He said: Two thirds? He said: “Whatever you wish, and if you do more, that will be good.” He said: Should I make all of my supplication sending blessings upon you? He said: “Then your worries would be taken care of and your sin would be forgiven.”

This hadith was classed as saheeh by Shaykh al-Albaani in Saheeh at-Targheeb wa’t-Tarheeb (1670).

Finally:

We think that you should avoid ambiguous phrases such as these, because protecting the sublime concept of Tawheed is obligatory, and you should use clear phrases that are not ambiguous, such as saying for example: By virtue of sending blessings upon the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him), Allah will grant relief from distress and make difficult things easy. Or you can say: Whenever the teachings of the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) are followed, there will be ease and comfort.

And Allah knows best.

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Source: Islam Q&A