Istikharah – A Special Prayer

At certain stages of life we often find ourselves at crossroads, impelled to make important decisions that would have huge impacts on our future. These decisions could be about choosing a career, getting married to someone, buying a car or a house, relocating or moving to a foreign land and the like. Despite considering all the positives and negatives and consulting family, friends or other qualified people, this task of reaching a sound decision leaves us doubtful and nervous. Praise and thanks to our Creator who doesn’t leave us fretting and worried during these crucial times. He has taught us, a special prayer for guidance in making decisions called Salat Al-Istikharah. When performing this prayer one asks Allah to guide him to the right choice concerning a certain essential matter.
The prayer of Istikharah was described in a hadeeth narrated by Jaabir ibn ‘Abd-Allah al-Salami, who said: “The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) used to teach his companions to make Istikharah in all things, just as he used to teach them surahs from the Qur’an. He (peace be upon him) 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 ‘innee ‘astakheeruka bi’ilmika, wa ‘astaqdiruka biqudratika, wa ‘as’aluka min fadhlikal-‘Adheemi, fa’innaka taqdiru wa laa ‘aqdiru, wa ta’lamu, wa laa ‘a’lamu, wa ‘Anta ‘Allaamul-Ghuyoobi, Allaahumma ‘in kunta ta’lamu ‘anna haathal-‘amra-[then mention the thing to be decided] Khayrun lee fee deenee wa ma’aashee wa ‘aaqibati ‘amree – [or say] ‘Aajilihi wa ‘aajilihi – Faqdurhu lee wa yassirhu lee thumma baarik lee feehi, wa ‘in kunta ta’lamu ‘anna haathal-‘amra sharrun lee fee deenee wa ma’aashee wa ‘aaqibati ‘amree – [or say] ‘Aajilihi wa ‘aajilihi – Fasrifhu ‘annee wasrifnee ‘anhu waqdur liyal-khayra haythu kaana thumma ‘ardhinee bihi’
O Allah, I ask for Your decision by Your knowledge and Your decree by Your ability, and I ask of You from Your great favor. For You are able and I am not able, and You know and I do not know, and You are the Knower of things concealed. O Allah, if You have known that this matter [naming it here] is good for me in my religion, my livelihood and the outcome of my affair, then decree it for me, make it easy for me and then bless it for me. And if You have known that this matter is bad for me in my religion, my livelihood and the outcome of my affair, then turn it away from me and turn me away from it, and decree for me what is good wherever it may be. And then make me content with it.’ (Al-Bukhaari, al-Tirmidhi, al-Nisaa’i, Abu Dawood, Ibn Maajah and Ahmad).
The result of Istikharah is known by being inclined to do something and continuing to feel positive about it. In addition, if the decision one is about to take is good for him (in both worlds), the paths to it will open up and if it’s not, then the paths will become obstructed and Allah will direct him somewhere else.
The beauty of the Istikharah is that the person who sought the guidance of Allah will be content with Allah’s decision for him even if it diverts him from what he thought was good as he will know that this is the result of his Istikharah. This is because, Allah, the Creator knows what is best and will definitely guide His servants to what is best for them within His vast knowledge and infinite wisdom. rely
  We need to understand that Istikharah does not guarantee the absence of tests and trials in life. Since Istikharah is a du’aa, Allah’s response to it may come in any of the three ways as stated in the hadeeth: “There is no Muslim who offers a du’aa in which there is no sin or severing of family ties but Allah will give him one of three things in return: either He will answer his du’aa soon, or he will store it up for him in the Hereafter, or He will divert an equivalent evil away from him because of it.” (Ahmad)
So if one goes through a bad marriage even after performing Istikharah or suffers loss in his business, etc., it might be that Allah wants him/her to draw closer to Him by way of patience and du’aa and send His blessings through some other way. Allah says: “But perhaps you hate a thing and it is good for you; and perhaps you love a thing and it is bad for you. And Allah knows, while you know not.” (Qur’an 2:216)
The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “It is from the happiness of the son of Adam to practice Istikharah and be pleased with what Allah had ordained for him. And it is from the misery of the son of Adam to drop the Istikharah of Allah and be displeased at Allah’s decrees.” (Tirmidhi and Ahmad)
Unfortunately, many people nowadays ignore this beautiful Sunnah and resort to baseless or forbidden ways to make important decisions. Seeking omens (faal) is one of these ways and it has been strictly forbidden in Islam, because it comes under the same heading as divination with arrows (mentioned in the Qur’an 5:3).
There are some other people who do follow the Sunnah of praying Istikharah but have added weird myths and unreasonable expectations to it. They ask some stranger or religious personality to do it for them and expect the results of Istikharah to be shown to them in dreams, visions, some special sign or color while all of this is nothing but acts of ignorance.
Firstly, it is a form of innovation to ask someone else to do istikharah for you or do it for others and secondly, it doesn’t give one instant results like giving a green signal to proceed in a certain affair.
Istikharah is a du’aa which one needs to make himself, at any time of the day and then execute the matter (for which he prayed). And if it is good then Allah will make it easy for him and bless him in that, and if it is not good for him, then Allah will turn it away from him and will make easy for him that in which there is good by His permission. For without doubt, the person who makes Istikharah, seeking guidance from his Creator and advice from His creation never regrets, as Allah said to His Messenger (peace be upon him) in the Qur’an (3:159): “Consult them in the matter. And when you have decided, then rely upon Allah. Indeed, Allah loves those who rely [upon Him].”
-Mariam Anwer
Originally published at Arab News
AN Istikharah

And He found you lost and guided (you)…


Like an individual walking in the scorching heat of an endless desert. Tired, thirsty, with hardly any hope left in him to find shade. That’s how a believer may feel at certain instances in his life. But what always cures him? It is the beautiful Names of Allah SWT. For every worry, concern, anxiety, apprehension, calamity, you will find extreme peace, contentment, immense joy, and solution in at least one Name of Allah SWT. If you fear for someone’s safety, you console your heart that Allah SWT is Al-Haafidh and Al-Waliy of the Believers. He SWT will never ever desert His Special Slaves and will give them Special Help even if 1000′s of people are after them, chasing them like Shayateen in the form of wild dogs and wolves. He SWT is An-Naseer, Al Qahhar and Al-Qawiyy so with your patience, you’ve got the Only One who is Competent over all and the Only One who is able to give anyone victory, on your side! If you are worried about somebody’s health, you remind yourself that Allah SWT is Ash-Shafi and all possibilities of cure lie within His Might so He may provide a cure even if there’s no medical solution. Also that if He does not Will in His Ultimate Wisdom (Al-Hakeem) for the person you love to be cured right now and immediately, then as a believer you must calm down for He SWT loves His Slaves more than we can ever love them. Why? Because He SWT is Al-Wadood, Ar-Ra’oof, Ar-Raheem. If you find that people are constantly not valuing you, are not noticing your day and night’s efforts, or are even misunderstanding your good intentions and good words, then know that Allah SWT is Ash-Shaakir. He SWT knows when nobody knows. It is with Him your reward remains, nobody can steal it unless you waste it via your misdeeds, and it is He SWT alone who will repair your heart.When you feel like losing patience and bursting after tolerating a certain person’s repeated bad behaviour then recognize Allah SWT is Al-Haleem. He SWT forbears, tolerates and withholds Himself from seizing people by their forelock as they happily give their thanks to other than Him and commit Shirk (the greatest offense), then who are we to lose our patience with people when we are not capable of doing them a favour without His Will, let alone create them! You may be stuck in a horrifyingly difficult situation with nobody to turn to or ask for help. Or it may be something trivial that you are anxious about. Know that Allah SWT is Al-Fattah, the Only One who will open up doors of solution which seem locked. Is there something that you wish for in this dunia? A good job? Some extra cash to buy a halal house or a small car? Or maybe children/good spouse? Guess what? Allah SWT is Ar-Razzaq, He SWT will give you what you deserve OR in your specific case He SWT may be Al-Wahhab and He SWT may gift you with something you did not expect at all without asking for anything in return. He SWT is Al-Lateef and He may do it in a very subtle, loving, gentle manner by putting trials as stepping stones in your way so that your footsteps reach a destination where you’re taken by surprise by His Mercy. These trials may seems as these difficult challenges in your limited vision but they may be His Form of Mercy to you to gain more knowledge and awareness about Him. Through His Name of Ar-Rahmaan, you would then realize that He SWT is Al-Mu’tee, the Superb Giver of Knowledge and understanding of the Deen!


…and there you were worrying about so many things… 

So whenever you are down, do the thought experiment I just expressed through words in this post and look for the Name of Allah SWT that will help you through this situation. Please ensure the Names and Attributes from the authentic sources!

Let me end by sharing my most favourite verses of the Quraan:

هُوَ اللَّهُ الَّذِي لَا إِلَٰهَ إِلَّا هُوَ ۖ عَالِمُ الْغَيْبِ وَالشَّهَادَةِ ۖ هُوَ الرَّحْمَٰنُ الرَّحِيمُ
هُوَ اللَّهُ الَّذِي لَا إِلَٰهَ إِلَّا هُوَ الْمَلِكُ الْقُدُّوسُ السَّلَامُ الْمُؤْمِنُ الْمُهَيْمِنُ الْعَزِيزُ الْجَبَّارُ
الْمُتَكَبِّرُ ۚ سُبْحَانَ اللَّهِ عَمَّا يُشْرِكُونَ
هُوَ اللَّهُ الْخَالِقُ الْبَارِئُ الْمُصَوِّرُ ۖ لَهُ الْأَسْمَاءُ الْحُسْنَىٰ ۚ يُسَبِّحُ لَهُ مَا فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ
وَالْأَرْضِ ۖ وَهُوَ الْعَزِيزُ الْحَكِيمُ
He is Allah , other than whom there is no deity, Knower of the unseen and the witnessed. He is the Entirely Merciful, the Especially Merciful. He is Allah , other than whom there is no deity, the Sovereign, the Pure, the Perfection, the Bestower of Faith, the Overseer, the Exalted in Might, the Compeller, the Superior. Exalted is Allah above whatever they associate with Him. He is Allah , the Creator, the Inventor, the Fashioner; to Him belong the best names. Whatever is in the heavens and earth is exalting Him. And He is the Exalted in Might, the Wise.

[Surat’l Hashr, 59:22-24]

~If whatever is in the Heavens and the Earth is exalting Him and glorifying Him, then why should we, the ones whom Allah SWT honored by commanding the Most Obedient of Creations i.e. the Angels prostrate to our father Adam AS, be left behind in Glorifying Him with His Beautiful Names and Attributes?

No doubt the Promise of Allah SWT of finding peace in His Remembrance and all other Promises are Haqq. 



Du’aa on the Day of Arafah


Zakariya was granted a child in extreme oldage..

The fire was cooled down for Ibrahim,
Jannah was shown to Asiya in the midst of torture..
Yunus was brought out of the belly of a whale…
What makes you think…
Allah won’t answer your Du’aa…
Make Immense du’aa today for everything and anything!
May Allah accept and fulfill all your halal wishes! Aameen!

My Favorite Du’aa

musa duaa

A concise yet a beautiful & meaningful du’aa made by Prophet Musa (alyhissalam)..mentioned by Al Kareem in Qur’an Al Kareem. We learn from the verses following this verse that when Musa (alyhissalam) made this du’aa, Allah blessed him with everything that he needed, i.e., a righteous spouse, family, a place to live & work! SubhanAllah!

So, what are we waiting for? Let’s supplicate to Allah with these beautiful words, in this blessed month and hope for His acceptance & response! May Al Mujeeb respond and accept our du’aas! Aameen!


Allah knows2

Sometimes, we want someone to deeply understand our wounds, our fears, and the pain we carry with us. Sometimes we want others to stop judging, stop talking, and stop assuming they know us. Sometimes, we want someone to just listen, just love, and show us how to let go. 

But most of the time, you’ll be waiting. Waiting for any of that to take place. 

You have to be there for you, understand and accept you, listen to you, stop judging you, and stop assuming that you even know the real you! Tests show you new faces all the time. 

What we all need, all the time, is to open our hearts up to Allah, open our hands in du’a, and move our breath to create words to tell Him, and to find comfort in knowing that He already knows. 

And then, we just have to submit.

Al-Mu’akhir – the One Who Delays!


ALLAH is al-Mu’akhir – the One Who Delays! ♥

He delays certain things out of Mercy for us, but out of ignorance we become impatient. Instead of having a good opinion of Him, a deeper certainty in His Power, and more trust in His Ways, we instead become anxious, resentful, and unhappy. 
Our Iman (faith) then takes a dip because we’ve failed to understand. But He is al-Mu’akhir. He delays out of goodness. 
Does He not delay punishing the creation for their sins, so that they can come to repent?

A L L A H U – A K B A R !! ♥