When delving into the teachings of Islam, one encounters the term ‘Taqwa’ frequently. What is Taqwa in Islam? How does it shape the life of a believer? In the vast ocean of Islamic teachings, Taqwa is like a guiding star that enlightens the path of a Muslim in this world and the hereafter.
Derived from the Arabic root word ‘Waqaya’ which means ‘to shield’ or ‘to guard,’ Taqwa can be best described as God-consciousness. It is a heightened sense of awareness of Allah’s presence, leading an individual to avoid displeasing Him. This profound consciousness motivates a believer to perform righteous actions and abstain from prohibited ones.
In the Holy Qur’an, Taqwa is recurrently emphasized:
“O mankind, worship your Lord, who created you and those before you, that you may become righteous (muttaqun).” (Qur’an, 2:21)
Here, the word ‘muttaqun’ indicates those who possess Taqwa.
The Significance of Taqwa
Taqwa is more than just a concept; it’s a proactive state of heart and mind. It acts as a protective barrier between a believer and sinful actions. Just as an umbrella shields us from rain, Taqwa protects a believer from committing errors that distance him from the Almighty.
The Messenger of Allah, Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), once described its essence beautifully by holding his hand over his chest and saying,
“Taqwa is here.” (Hadith, Muslim)
Such a profound statement implies that Taqwa is deeply rooted in the heart, influencing every thought, word, and action of a believer.
Benefits of Cultivating Taqwa
- Guidance: Allah promises those with Taqwa His guidance in their lives
“O you who have believed, if you fear Allah, He will grant you a criterion (to judge between right and wrong)…” (Qur’an, 8:29)
- Success in the Hereafter: Taqwa prepares a believer for the eternal success in the afterlife.
“But as for him who feared standing before his Lord and restrained himself from impure evil desires, Paradise will be his abode.” (Qur’an, 79:40-41)
- Worldly Benefits: A life marked with Taqwa attracts divine blessings and solutions during challenges.
“And whoever fears Allah – He will make for him a way out (from every difficulty).” (Qur’an, 65:2)
How to Attain Taqwa
To truly integrate Taqwa into one’s life,one must:
- Engage in regular prayers (Salah): It keeps a believer connected with his Creator and serves as a constant reminder of the Divine.
- Study the Qur’an: Understanding and reflecting upon the words of Allah enhances one’s consciousness
- Practice self-accountability: It is often necessary to judge your own actions and intentions. It helps in realigning one’s deeds with the teachings of Islam.
- Seek knowledge: Continuous learning and understanding of the Deen (religion) enhances one’s Allah consciousness
Taqwa,in essence, is the compass that directs a believer toward righteous living. It is the inner force that constantly reminds one of their duty towards Allah and helps in making choices that are pleasing to Him. As life presents its myriad challenges, it is Taqwa that can serve as the guiding light, illuminating the path to righteousness and eternal success.
To further understand the profound concept of Taqwa in Islam, scholars such as Ibn Al-Qayyim, Imam Al-Ghazali, and Imam Nawawi have written extensively on this subject, providing a deep reservoir of knowledge for seekers.
Cultivating Taqwa is a continuous journey. As the Qur’an says
“But the home of the Hereafter is best for those who fear Allah, so will you not reason?” (Qur’an, 6:32)
Are you ready to embark on this transformative journey? Dive deeper into the teachings of Islam and allow Taqwa to resonate within your heart. Register for our program here or explore our various courses here.