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Success tips for 2020

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Sucessful Indeed are the believers…those who guard their private parts- … (Q23: 1-7)
In Islam the observance of Salat is the key to other acts of worship. It is the first act of worship that would be accounted for on the day of resurrection. The Muslim worshipper who observes the Salat at the right time and in the manner in which it has been stipulated or prescribed, positions himself for series of blessings from the Almighty. Prophet Muhammad says: “Allah has obligated five prayers. Whoever excellently performs his ablutions, performs his prayers in their proper times, completes his act of bowing and prostrates in adoration and full consciousness of the presence of the Almighty has a promise from the Almighty that He will forgive him. And whoever does not do that has no promise from Him. He may either forgive him or punish him. In the Quran we are told that once a man enjoys the forgiveness of the Almighty, the inimitable bounties in the heavens would be opened up for him.

Closely linked to the above is the observance of tahajjud (night prayers). If you ponder Surah Muzammil (Q73) you would discover that our Creator specifically instructed His messenger to establish the Night Prayer when he was in a very difficult situations, when he was in the direst need of help and assistance. He says: “O you wrapped in garments (i.e) prophet Muhammad (saw)!

Stand to pray all night, or a half of it or a little part of it (1-2). Thus in order to succeed and overcome the turbulence of this year you need to cultivate the habit of waking up at night when everyone else is asleep in order to connect with your Creator. This is because Tahajjud is second only to the five obligatory prayers in importance. It is a very important spiritual formula which Islam established centuries ago but which has now been adopted by followers of other religions. It is quite ironic that Muslims who neglect this virtue often become easy preys in the hands of evil forces. They sometimes end up living the religion of Islam in order to observe such ‘prayers’ in places where such has become fashionable.

With reference to the above, the companion of the Prophet, Abu Hurayah (may the Almighty be pleased with him) reported thus: “The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said: “the Almighty has said: “Whoever displays enmity towards a friend of Mine, I shall be at war with him. My servant does not draw near to Me with anything more loved by Me than what I have made compulsory upon him, and My servant continues to draw near to Me with nawafil (supererogatory prayers) until I loved him and when I love him, I become his hearing with which he hears, and his eyes with which he sees, and his hand with which he grasps, and his foot with which he walks, and if he were to ask of Me, I would surely give it to him, and if he were to ask of Me, I would surely give it to him, and if he were to ask Me for refuge,I would surely grant him it”

Dear brethren, to be successful in 2020, you must, by all means possible, avoid all frivolities. You must shun vain talk. To shun vain talks implies pitching your tenth with the truthful. This, no doubt would be a very difficult virtue to imbibe particularly in this clime and time. The truthful, in this clime is usually an enemy of earthly principalities; the truthful in this time is often a loner, the wretched. The truthful usually finds the doors of the rich and powerful ever unattractive and loathsome. He is seen as an enigma if not someone suffering from dementia. The truthful amongst human beings would most likely not be found in the circle of the politicians, he would most likely not be a comrade to the moral Lilliputians who luxuriate on a daily basis in the vanities of the temporality of earthly positions and the illusions of bodily enchantments.

To be successful in 2020 you need to guard your loins. You need to be faithful to your partner. One of the greatest sins and in fact the major source of human perdition is the sin of the loins – the incontinence of the phallus, the infidelity of the bearers of the womb.
Dear brethren, your success in 2020 would equally be determined in part by your ability to wait and be patient with your Creator. The position of patience (Sabr) in Islam, according to the fourth Khalifah (Ali b. Abi Talib) is like the position of the head in the human body. Lack of patience is responsible for the way Nigerians change their center and places of worship like they change their cloth on a daily basis. Our prophet reminds us thus: ‘know that whatever has been decreed for you is looking for you more than you are looking for it; that which has been decreed against you would never come your way no matter how hard you strive for it’.
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Oladosu is a professor of Middle Eastern, North African and Cultural Studies. Dean, Faculty of Arts, University of Ibadan, Nigeria.


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