But what do we do when we face a hardship? How can we “cure” a calamity? Patience is a weapon that we can, and have to, use if we are to survive a calamity. But is there a way to actually help end it? Allah has opened the door to that answer as well.
Actually, patience is not only the weapon that will help us through hardships, it is also the cure. Truly, at the end of the night is day – the sun will shine at some time. The relief of a calamity is a reward and a blessing from Allah who will “give good tidings to the patient” (Qur’an 2:155).
But along with patience we also need to supplicate, make Du’a. Allah says, “Call upon Me; I will respond to you.” (40:60) As Muslims, we believe that Allah is able to change things instantly. Allah has also invited us to ask from Him, as outlined by the previous verse. Through Du’a, we can connect with Allah and we can request a cure for the calamity.
The power of patience and Du’a is outlined in the story of Prophet Ayyub (peace be upon him). Allah tested him by taking away his wealth, children, and health. He remained patient. He never gave up. He continued to make Du’a to Allah and he always thanked Allah for his condition. In the end, Allah removed this hardship and gave him much more than what he had lost; all that, thanks to his Du’a and patience.
Again, one possible reason for a calamity is indulging in sins. Therefore, self-reflection is crucial point to begin the path of “curing” the problem. Upon recognizing the mistakes we are doing, repentance is the next step. While repentance helps prevent calamities and helps remove them, the repentance needs to be sincere and it should be reflected in our actions. Once we change our ways to be the best, Allah will change our conditions to what is better for us. Confirming that point, Allah says, “Indeed, Allah will not change the condition of a people until they change what is in themselves.” (13:11)
One of the most important, tried, and tested approaches that help in getting over hardship is asking Allah in the name of his beloved people, Prophet Muhammad and his Holy Household (peace be upon them). Allah asks us to knock on their doors when we want to ask Him. Reciting Ziyarat, especially the Ziyarat of Ashura, is known to work wonders.
By far, the most common door to knock upon when suffering from a calamity is that of the famous Hadith al-Kisa, the Narration of the Cloak. In that Hadith, the Prophet (peace be upon him and his progeny) swears in the name of Allah that “There shall remain none grieved but Allah will remove his grief, there shall remain none distressed but Allah will dispel his distress, and there shall remain none wish-seeker but Allah will grant his wish.” (Mafatih al-Jinan)
A Closer Look
As you may have noticed, what helps prevent a calamity is also powerful in curing it, and vice versa. So we should be patient and strive to lead a righteous and pure life. We should always nurture our relationship with Allah, the Prophet, and his Holy Household. This way, we can do our best to prevent calamities. However, if Allah decides to test us and purify us with a hardship, then we are ready to emerge happy and victorious.
With that said, we should not forget one of the bigger calamities that we are all facing as humans: the occultation of Imam al-Hujjah (may Allah hasten his reappearance). We should be patient. We should make Du’a for him and for us. We should try to live a sin-free life as we prepare for his arrival. God willing, our actions will help hasten his appearance and Allah will soon give the permission for his representative to come out and establish the right and just nation.