Ways of obtaining Baraka – blessings in our lives
Indeed, we live in a time in which our civilization has attained and developed in different spheres of life. These types of developments are unprecedented, which we haven’t seen in previous nations and previous civilizations. We find that we have a higher degree of worship whether it be related to life or technology. We see this advancement.
So we live in this contemporary life which really surprises and astonishes us. Despite all of these advancements, we see in society, we find that these advancements in our society, they do not guarantee happiness in the way we have seen people attain happiness in the past.
And this is all due to the absence of a matter which is extremely important. And without this particular thing, there is no meaning to life. And we ask ourselves, what is this important thing, without which you cannot attain happiness in life. It is indeed, Oh Servants of Allah, it is attaining baraqa – benefit – blessings in our life.
There is no person who has a steadfast life and he does not receive blessings. And what is the benefit of time if it has no blessing in it? What is the benefit of knowledge if it has no blessing in it? And what is the benefit of having food that has no blessings in it? What is Barakah?
والبركة: هي ثبوت الخير الإلهي في الشيء؛ فإنها إذا حلت في قليل كثرته، وإذا حلت في كثير نفع، ومن أعظم ثمار البركة في الأمور كلها إستعمالها في طاعة الله عز وجل.
“Barakah is the attachment of Divine goodness to a thing, so if it occurs in something little, it increases it. And if it occurs in something much it benefits. And the greatest fruits of Barakah in all things is to use that barakah in the obedience of Allah (Subahanahu Wa Ta’ala).
Allah said in Surat Al-A’eraaf 96, and Surah At-Talaaq 2-3:
وَلَوْ أَنَّ أَهْلَ الْقُرَىٰ آمَنُوا وَاتَّقَوْا لَفَتَحْنَا عَلَيْهِم بَرَكَاتٍ مِّنَ السَّمَاءِ وَالْأَرْضِ وَلَٰكِن كَذَّبُوا فَأَخَذْنَاهُم بِمَا كَانُوا يَكْسِبُونَ. وَمَن يَتَّقِ اللَّهَ يَجْعَل لَّهُ مَخْرَجًا. وَيَرْزُقْهُ مِنْ حَيْثُ لَا يَحْتَسِبُ ۚ وَمَن يَتَوَكَّلْ عَلَى اللَّهِ فَهُوَ حَسْبُهُ.
And if only the people of the cities had believed and feared Allah , We would have opened upon them blessings from the heaven and the earth; and : And whoever fears Allah – He will make for him a way out, And will provide for him from where he does not expect. And whoever relies upon Allah – then He is sufficient for him.
Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said:
عن عمر بن الخطاب رضي الله عنه ، أن رسول الله صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم قال : ” لو أنكم توكلتم على الله حق توكله لرزقكم كما يرزق الطير تغدو خماصا وتروح بطانا ” . هذا حديث صحيح الإسناد ولم يخرجاه.
“If only you relied on Allah a true reliance, He would provide sustenance for you just as He does the birds: They fly out in the morning empty and return in the afternoon with full stomachs. (Ahmad, An-Nasa’I, Ibn Majah, Al-Hakim and At-Tirmidhi)
Halal income money: Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said:
عن أبي هريرة قال قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم: ( إن الله تعالى طيب لا يقبل إلا طيبا وإن الله أمر المؤمنين بما أمر به المرسلين فقال تعالى: ( يَا أَيُّهَا الرُّسُلُ كُلُوا مِنَ الطَّيِّبَاتِ وَاعْمَلُوا صَالِحًا إِنِّي بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ عَلِيمٌ). وقال تعالى: ( يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آَمَنُوا كُلُوا مِنْ طَيِّبَاتِ مَا رَزَقْنَاكُمْ). ثم ذكر الرجل يطيل السفر أشعث أغبر يمد يديه إلى السماء يا رب يارب ومطعمه حرام ومشربه حرام وملبسه حرام وغذي بالحرام فأنى يستجاب له) رواه مسلم.
“O people, Allah is good and He therefore, accepts only that which is good” (Scholars say this refers to Halal income and the importance of it).
A scholar also said of the one who eats Haram, that his limbs will disobey Allah whether he likes it or not, and that the one who eats Halal and seeks Halal income, his limbs will also do good and will be given the permission to seek goodness.
Giving thanks to Allah in abundance: Allah says in the Qur’an in surat Ibrahim 7:
وَإِذْ تَأَذَّنَ رَبُّكُمْ لَئِن شَكَرْتُمْ لَأَزِيدَنَّكُمْ ۖ وَلَئِن كَفَرْتُمْ إِنَّ عَذَابِي لَشَدِيدٌ.
And [remember] when your Lord proclaimed, ‘If you are grateful, I will surely increase you [in favor]; but if you deny, indeed, My punishment is severe.
Charity: In a Hadeeth Qudsi, Allah says:
عن أبي هريرة رضي الله عنه أن رسول الله – صلى الله عليه وسلم قال : قال الله : أَنْفِق يا ابن آدم أُنْفِق عليك ) رواه البخاري ومسلم.
“O son of Adam, spend (in charity), and I’ll spend on you!”
Waking up early: Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said:
عن صخر الغامدي قال قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم: اللهم بارك لأمتي في بكورها. رواه ابن ماجة, و أحمد.
“Allah made the early hours blessed for my Ummah.”(Ahmed)
Asking Allah for forgiveness: The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “If anyone continually asks forgiveness from Allah, Allah will appoint for him a way out of every distress, and a relief from every anxiety, and will provide for him from where he did not reckon.”
If a person does not understand baraqa and does not receive baraqa, if he was to live in a palace, then to him it would be like living in a prison. And this is the result of even attaining this blessing in life or being prevented from attaining it. So baraqa essentially is that which gives an increase in good.
This blessing could also occur in a person’s wealth that would mean that a person attains a sufficient amount of wealth until he dies and Allah makes his wealth go a long way. A person could be blessed in his food as well and the blessing in this food is that it fills a person’s stomach even though it might be a small amount and likewise, a blessing in knowledge, the blessing in knowledge is that it leads to beneficial deeds. These are the effects of baraqa.
However, we live in a time where we suffer from lack of baraqa, and we live in a time where people really suffer in all aspects of life from the lack of baraqa from Allah s.w.t. So people think that in reality, blessings is all about attaining great amounts o wealth and many children but you will find that there are many people with great amounts of wealth yet you find they have no blessings in their wealth. You find they earn hundreds of thousands of dollars yet you find that it does not benefit them and they lose their money quickly. People have many children yet you find there is no baraqa in their children.
However, if you were to compare the era that we live in today to the era of the Prophet s.a.w.s. and his companions, you will find a stark difference in baraqa. So for example, you will find that the Prophet s.a.w.s., he would find a great deal of blessings in just a small piece of bread that would suffice for him and all of his companions.
For example we see the companion, Uthman ibn A’afaan, Allah blessed his wealth and by his wealth, he was able to provide and sustain a whole army.
Though we have to ask ourselves two important questions: How do you attain this baraqa. And at the same time we have to ask ourselves; what are the things that prevent the baraqa from befalling upon us.
The person who wishes to attain the blessings in his life, then he must observe and be aware of those things which bring about these blessings. It is, if a person contemplates, he will find that he will be able to find the blessings in life by completing the following things.
Firstly, by believing in Allah s.w.t, and believing in his messenger and adhering to the law of Allah and his messenger.
Secondly, a person has to be grateful towards Allah, for his blessings. As Allah s.w.t says, then indeed, if you were to be grateful to Allah, he will increase your blessings, but if you deny my favors then indeed my punishment is severe.
The third cause of attaining benefit is having a halal source of income. As Allah s.w.t says he obliterates usury but he makes charity grow.
And the fourth cause of obtaining benefit is by staying away from israaf – extravagance in spending lavishly. As Allah s.w.t. says, indeed those who spend lavishly and extravagantly, they are the brothers of the devils. And thus they will not be able to attain any baraqa.