Action Steps to Build Tawwakul
Are you feeling anxious about life?
Do the soaring housing prices stress you?
Or are you paralyzed with fear over your children’s future?
Maybe most of your thoughts are consumed by “what if?”
As Muslims, we must ‘tie our camel’ and trust in Allah.
But how much is too much?
Anas bin Malik narrates that a man said: “O Messenger of Allah! Shall I tie it and trust (rely upon Allah), or leave it loose and trust (rely upon Allah)?” He said: “Tie it and trust (rely upon Allah).” Jami` at-Tirmidhi 2517
There is no doubt we must try.
We need to plant the seed, water it, and do our best to guard it. Then see what happens. But we can become obsessed with the fear of instability; thus, we can no longer be present in our life and enjoy it.
The solution to getting peace in our life requires us to take a few steps back.
6 Ways to Put Your Trust in Allah
Do your best in moderation.
A Muslim’s life is one of balance.
We find ourselves in chaos whenever we overstep this balance, even if it seems good. This chaos can be mental turmoil. Or it can physically make us sick. Or it can leave us in an emotional void, unable to “be happy.”
To benefit from our actions, we need to make a reasonable effort, then stop worrying about it (rely on Allah).
Like the hadith above, where the camel reins must be tied, we rely on Allah.
It is not that we tie the camel, sit watching it, or attach ourselves to it with a rope, etc. We make a reasonable effort and then be at ease knowing Allah is in control.
Stay firm in Islamic teachings.
Putting our trust in Allah doesn’t always mean doing something.
Sometimes it could be not doing something we know would displease Allah.
Social norms have forced us into tricky situations, whether filtering our beliefs or bending the principles of our practice to suit occasions (i.e., celebrating Halloween).
We constantly face situations contrary to Islamic principles that are agreed upon by the consensus of scholars. So, in trying to please Allah, we are relying on Him. The world may dislike us for doing it, but as believers, we know we are protected and will be fine.
Trust in Allah requires that we live in a manner that Pleases Allah and not people.
Align your life with the purpose of your existence
Our purpose in this world is to worship Allah, the Creator of all things. Full Stop.
When we shift our perception, even slightly, things change for us.
Sometimes it changes for the better, and sometimes it changes for the worse. In trying to develop an attitude of reliance on Allah, we must contemplate our existence.
When we fully internalize our true purpose here, we see life as more significant than our problems. We then learn to rely on our Creator because we have fully acknowledged His Power and Authority over us.
Not fearing what you cannot control.
There aren’t many things in life that we have control over. Our power is limited to our intent and actions.
We do not control what people do or how they feel, only how we treat them. Knowing that control belongs to Allah and our job is to follow up on our intentions, we learn to trust Allah. We no longer fear what we cannot control.
Ultimately, we learn to submit to Allah’s will, the truest form of liberation.
Remain content, even if it isn’t what you expected
Social media is a constant source of berating us for what we ‘deserve’ and only chasing after that. Or leaving something because we ‘deserve better.’
We live in a time that feeds us the notion of never settling. Settling is evil, and we should keep wanting ‘more, more, more!’
Being content is not settling. It’s being grateful.
Unfortunately, the core of this concept has been washed away by arrogance. Therefore, we end up fighting with our internal selves.
When we focus on the many things that go well, we learn to trust Allah in what we perceive hasn’t gone well. We acknowledge that we don’t know what’s best for us and that Allah is Most Just.
Being content, even if it’s not what we had hoped for, is us putting trust in Allah.
Establish trust in Allah through dua (supplication)
Supplication is training us to rely entirely on Allah.
Making dua puts us in the proper place, where the believer seeks help from our Master. A great dua to add to your daily supplication is this:
Anas (May Allah be pleased with him) reports:
Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said, “Whoever says (upon leaving his house): ‘Bismillah, tawakkaltu’ ala Allah, wa la hawla wa la quwwata illa billah [I begin with the Name of Allah; I trust in Allah; there is no altering of conditions but by the Power of Allah],’ it will be said to him: ‘You are guided, defended and protected.‘ The devil will go far away from him”.
Abu Dawud reported it with this addition: “One devil will say to another: ‘How can you deal with a man who has been guided, defended and protected?”. Riyad as-Salihin 83
We affirm that we put our trust in Allah and acknowledge His Power. Through that, we receive an immediate response of protection.
Trust in Allah is Being Mindful of Allah
Ibn Abbas reports: I was riding behind the Messenger of Allah, peace, and blessings be upon him, when he said to me, “Young man, I will teach you some words. Be mindful of Allah, and He will protect you. Be mindful of Allah, and you will find Him before you. If you ask, ask from Allah. If you seek help, seek help from Allah. Know that if the nations gathered together to benefit you, they could not benefit you unless Allah has decreed it for you. And if the nations gathered together to harm you, they could not unless Allah decreed it for you. The pens have been lifted, and the pages have dried.” Sunan al-Tirmidhī 2516
The last piece of advice for putting your trust in Allah comes from this powerful hadith. This hadith sets our mind for success and tells us how to do it; “Be mindful of Allah.”
The more aware we are of Allah’s authority over us, His creation, and every circumstance, the less worry we have. And the more we learn to put our trust in Him Alone.