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My Personal Struggle With Waswaas

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My Personal Struggle With Waswaas

Sister Um Ibrahim Ali

Part 1

 

After high school, most of my friends and I parted ways. I had a lot of time to think about the important things in life. I returned to doing something which I haven’t done in a long time—reading, reciting and learning the Qur'an,

 

Alhamdulilah. I started reading the English translation of the Quran, and I fell in love with the Quran because I understood the Quran better. It was as if I had just become Muslim and was learning about the Qur'an for the first time.

I used to spend many hours listening to the Quran and following along by reading the English translation. I learned so much about Islam.

 

I developed a strong desire to learn teh Qur'an and study Islam to become a better Muslimah; this was when the waswaas started (what a coincidence, right?).

 

One of the very first ayah (verse) of the Quran which the shaytan would whisper evil questions to me about was the ayah where Allah makes it permissible for men to marry up to four women. I had this constant thought that this was just not fair. No matter how hard I tried to shake off this evil thought, it would always come back to my mind, Subhanalaah.

 

The evil thoughts didn’t stop there. The evil thoughts and whispers escalated to more horrible questions that concerned Allah.

This was the most painful for me. I didn’t know how to stop it or what to do. I felt like I was the most evil person in the world; my heart literally used to ache every time these evil thoughts came to my mind.

 

I used to cry.

I felt so miserable.

Nothing made me smile anymore.

 

My desire to learn the deen and the joy I felt when listening to the Quran were both slowly disappearing. Instead, I felt anxiety every time I wanted to listen or read the Quran.

 

I was afraid I would have one of those evil thoughts again, and for this reason I avoided reading the Quran altogether. All in all, it was one of the lowest points in my life. I felt like the one thing in the world which was my comfort and my guide (Quran) was being taken away.

 

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Part 2

How I Overcame The Waswaas

  • Dua! I cried my eyes out to Allah and begged Him night and day to help me and to take away those evil thoughts because it was not in my control.
  • I searched about what was happening to me and talked to some local sheiks about my trouble. This was when I first learned about waswaas. I searched the internet for hadiths about waswaas and found several that really helped me. One of those was the following hadith:

The Messenger, peace be upon him, said:

“The Shaytan may come to any one of you and say, ‘Who created Allah, the Almighty?’ If any one of you experiences this, let him say, ‘
‘Amantu billahi wa rasulihi ‘[i believed in Allah, the Almighty, and His Messenger, peace be upon him], and that will drive him away.”
(Saheeh al-Jami’ 1657)

 

  • I followed the advices of many sheikhs concerning waswaas: “Ignore it as much as you possibly can!”
  • I came back to reading and listening to the Quran no matter what came to my mind. I continued listening to the Quran and going to Islamic lectures and classes. This helped me tremendously!
  • I realized that Allah was making me stronger in this calamity and that I was being brought closer to Him through this test, this realization made it easier to get through it.

 

What Doesn’t Kill You Makes You Stronger

 

After months and months of chaos and suffering, the peace came back to my heart, Alhamdulillah. All the waswaas stopped and my desire and enjoyment for the Quran came back. Now, every time I hear about or see someone struggling with those same issues, I make du’a for them—I know the pain they are going through. This experience has taught me that I should never ever take for granted any of the blessings Allah has bestowed upon me, especially my faith.

 

 

If It Can Happen To Me, It Can Happen To You

 

As Muslims and as human beings, we take a lot of blessings we have in our lives for granted. We don’t realize the importance of health until we become sick and bedridden. Many people don’t ever imagine themselves in the same situation as others. They always have the thinking that ‘this surely cannot happen to me.’

 

That’s not true. It can happen to you; and in a lot of cases, it will happen to you.

When I was going through my hardships with the waswaas, I shared my problems and fear with one of my sisters in Islam. Unfortunately, she didn’t think it was all that serious.

 

She would say to me, “it’s all in your mind” or “maybe your iman is not strong enough,” things a friend should never say. And I used to leave her regretting even telling her anything.

 

Ironically, after several months, I got a call from that same friend. She told me that she was going through the same exact things I went through and she asked me for advice.

 

Subhanalaah! I was so shocked. In all honesty, I was not happy that what she thought was just a little problem was keeping her awake at night and having her question if she was even Muslim anymore. However, it goes to show that if it can happen to me or someone else, it can happen to you as well!

 

It’s important that we don’t take our blessings in life for granted. Always be humble and thankful that Allah is not testing you with what He is testing others.

 

And most importantly, remember that when a calamity happens to you and you remain patient you will come out of it stronger and more experienced.

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