It was the early hours of the morning and Fatima lay in her bed, unable to sleep. She simply couldn’t understand why she was targeted! You see, Fatima has recently experienced the hurt inflicted by baseless gossip. She was confused and after many hours of tossing in her bed, she had come to the conclusion that whoever had said, “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will not harm me”, was either wiser than she was or seriously misguided.

Rumours are untrue and fabricated. In Islam they fall under the category of slander and there is a great punishment which awaits the person who indulges in such an act. Rumours cause great harm to people and have the potential to destroy the unity and deeds of the community.

Fatima’s hurt and disappointment turned to anger. Her heart was tempted to harden in an effort to “keep out the world” and prevent future injury like this. She was at a crossroads. Her thoughts and feelings were in turmoil. Her nafs were nagging at her to “do something about it” or maybe event to teach the rumour mongers “a lesson”.

Fatima wiped away the tears from her eyes and sat up in her bed staring outside her parted curtains, at the sparkling stars in the sky. She was hurt and disappointed. Then her thoughts fell on her cherished Rasulullah Sallallāhu Alayhi Wasallam. Rasulullah  Sallallāhu Alayhi Wasallam had said that lies lead to obscenity and obscenity leads to Hell (Jahannum). She smiled and drew strength from thinking of her beloved Rasulullah Sallallāhu Alayhi Wasallam. She remembered learning in Madrassah about the trials that he endured and the patience (sabr) that he practiced. Her thoughts became clear now. She realized that as human beings, we have faults, strengths, needs and weaknesses. She began to understand that through jealousy and anger, good deeds may be consumed just as a fire would devour dry grass or firewood. She smiled yet again as she remembered a Hadith to that effect and that forgiving others will bring her peace.

Fatima smiled again and realized that people will rival over wealth, housing, family, status and even good looks. Does it make any sense to dislike somebody for something that was not even sought after by them, but rather bestowed upon them by The Almighty? Everybody enjoys the blessings of Allah Ta’ala in some way or another. We can see, hear, taste, walk, speak, etc. Fatima smiled as a wave of peace enveloped her heart and she realised, that despite all these horrid rumours, she still needed to make shukr for all the good that she had.

RasulullahSallallāhu Alayhi Wasallam had said that whoever can control his anger when he is in rage is a strong person. We know that Allah Ta’ala rewards a Muslim for all difficulties by either elevating his rank or by effacing his sins. So Fatima figured that she was going to “ride it out”. Rumours will do its rounds and will eventually die a natural death.Let the Creator deal with those who oppress.

Fatima decided to be patient and stood up. She reached a resolution not to become a BITTER person, but a BETTER person. She made wudhu and offered salah. She turned to her creator and supplicated for patience. Fatima remembered that she had once read, that Allah Ta’ala will not test a person with more than he (the person) can handle.

“Seek help through patience and prayer. Surely Allah is with the patient” (2: 153)

In the book “Don’t Be Sad”, “As long as you shine, give, produce and have an effect on others, then disapproval and condemnation will be your lot in life. Be patient as you surpass them in righteousness, knowledge, manners or (and) wealth”.

And as the sun’s rays began to fill her room, Fatima felt her Allah fill her soul. No more worrying about the insults and criticisms of others. With the flame of Imaan and positivity burning bright in her chest, she smiled at the sun and whispered, “Subhan’Allah”.

By: Sister Ayesha Vadia Moola For

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