The young Palestinian girl begging Israeli soldiers to spare her life. A teenage boy sitting by the hospital bed saying goodbye to a loved one lost to COVID. The college student pushing herself through each day as she combats academic and financial stress, only to live each day with lifelessness and repetition.
As the atmosphere of the world we know shifts through violence, disease, and deteriorating mental health, an instinctive reaction is to deny. To deny the suffering you have or are enduring. To bottle it all up with the hopes that in some way, it’ll just vanish.
But it doesn’t.
And then you find yourself unable to look in the mirror. Nights are spent with tears streaming down your cheeks with no way to stop them. So you just go with it. You allow yourself to feel that pain. Maybe then it’ll leave you.
But it doesn’t get better.
You push yourself to go out. Spend time with your loved ones and distract yourself. Yet each smile on your face is forced. An illusion. A mask. Shouldn’t the distractions bring me joy?
And even when you think it will get better, it doesn’t.
Through Islam, we are able to hack into resilience. By placing our faith and trust in Allah (SWT), our stress is lessened. This dunya is a test for us and by reminding ourselves of that, it’s easier to zoom out and understand the bigger picture behind our hardships.
It is a test. And Allah would not test us with an obstacle we are incapable of handling.
Through such tawakkul (or trust) in Allah, our sabr (patience) increases.
From reciting Quran, to praying, to surrounding yourself with your Muslim brothers and sisters, Islam offers us one of the most powerful keys to success:
The power to move forward.
Image taken by Sanah Ali