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Without a doubt, all of us face struggles and difficulties that come and go our whole lives. For many, the struggles are continuous and never leave. We may often find ourselves thinking “why me?” if we reflect.  

This worldly life has been designed for tests and trials, and we cannot help but search for a deeper meaning to give us closure as to why certain situations take place. It is in our nature. We all have the ability to perceive such obstacles in either a positive or negative light.

Whenever I go through a trial, I try my best to thank my Lord for every difficulty I endure in life. Even if I do not understand why, I always have faith I will eventually come to know these unanswered questions whether in this life or the next.

struggle praying

The most influential reason why I try to show gratitude to Allah (swt) in every hardship is because of the infallible standards and life lessons that have been set and taught to us by the Holy Household of Prophet Muhammad (pbut) in dealing with life struggles.  

To start, we know Imam Ali (as) was a gem given to us by Allah (swt) in order for us to succeed in our faith in Islam. Imam Ali (as) was sadly attacked while he was in sujood during his prayers in the Holy month of Ramadhan. After being struck, he saw that his killer was in distraught, and had requested for a sweet drink to be brought to him so that he may calm down. This is an extraordinary act of kind character demonstrated in one of the most difficult hardships Imam Ali (as) had to go through. Instead of reacting negatively to the situation, he responded with empathy and kindness towards his enemy. Imam Ali (as) teaches us how to keep our dignity, respect, and morals in all situations.

Thus, whenever we face issues in life from work, school, strangers, businesses, and even family or friends, we must not let our negative emotions be executed in an immoral way. Imam Ali (as) has given a perfect example of how to react in a negative situation and we must learn to apply this knowledge in all hardships we will endure.  

Imam Ali (as) said, “Life consists of two days, one for you and one against you. So when it’s for you, don’t be proud or reckless, and when it’s against you be patient, for both days are tests for you”

imam hussain

Second, we have Imam Hussain (as). The unimaginable suffering and tragedy of Imam Hussain (as) on the Day of Ashura is a lesson for millions around the globe. It is widely known that he was deprived of water, saw the massacre of his own family, dealt with unbearable cruelty, and deep heartbreak. Despite the severe circumstances, Imam Hussein (as) never submitted to injustice or oppression. Imam Hussain (as) has given the entire world an example of standing up for truth and justice. He (as) teaches us the peak of morality, how to be steadfast in this temporary life and helps us to focus on the ultimate goal – serving Allah (swt) by maintaing the highest manners and standing for justice, peace and equality. Whenever we face struggles in our daily life, we should take inspiration from Imam Hussain (as) and seek strength in working to please Allah (swt) and act upon that which is righteous. Imam Hussein (as) teaches us high moral standards. There is no reason we should ever act immorally for the sake of our anger, frustration, or sadness.  

Imam Hussain (as) said “Death with dignity is better than life of humiliation”

As a third example, if we look at the life of Imam Musa al-Kadhim (as) he was imprisoned for much of his Imamate. The oppressors kept him in inhumane conditions and treated him with cruelty and disrespect. Yet, despite the situation. Imam Musa al-Kadhim (as) viewed the imprisonment as a positive event as he looked forward to worshipping Allah (swt).

Imam Kadhim (as) said, “O God, I always used to ask You to free me from other duties in order to worship You; and You have answered me, so thanks be unto You for doing so.” 

His patience has been brilliantly proven in the prisons of where he was situated. With this example of a response to a long and terrible hardship, how can we not learn patience from the man who saw positivity while being confined? As his followers, we can learn to practice and attain higher levels of patience in the face of tribulations.  

The Zahra(s) Trust Canada wishes all people immense blessings and patience through life hardships and to remember the life difficulties of the Imams and how we can calm our hearts by reflecting on how the Holy Household (pbut) have dealt with trying adversities and remained steadfast in doing righteous acts for the love of Allah (swt).  

Contributed by: Wasefah Askari