Bismillaahir Rahmaanir Raheem
Alhamdulillaahir rabbil Ala’meen wa salaati wa salaam alaa Rasoolillaah.
All Praises are due to Allah and may His peace and blessings be upon His Messenger Muhammad (peace be upon him).
The stress of exam time has come once again. Throughout different periods of time several coping methods for stress have been developed. The most popular being alcohol, drugs and whatever else makes you forget about exams! However, as Muslims we know these are not permissible in our religion, so what is a Muslim to do at exam time? Alhamdulillah (praise be to God) that we have been blessed with an encompassing religion with many solutions. One of the most important solutions in every Muslim’s life is Tawakkul, or reliance upon Allah.
What is Tawakkul?
Tawakkul includes knowledge and action of the heart. The knowledge component is directly proportional to one’s knowledge and certainty of Allah. The act of tawakkul is in the heart’s tranquility and contentment. It is to do whatever it takes to get the job done, then to put your heart at rest by putting your trust in Allah . Allah tells us ‘And whoever fears Allah – He will make for him a way out. And will provide for him from where he does not expect. And whoever relies upon Allah – then He is sufficient for him. ” This point has also been found in a hadeeth (traditions of the Prophet Muhammad), narrated by Umar bin Khattab, (may Allah be pleased with him), that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “If all of you were to rely upon Allah in the manner He deserves from you, then He would certainly grant you provision as He provides it to the birds who depart hungry in the morning and return with a full belly at dusk. ” This hadeeth is worth reflecting on, the birds leave hungry in the morning, and they don’t know where there next meal is, but they fly anyway. The birds do not complain to others about Allah but just trust Him, they do their part and then trust that Allah will provide, and He does.
Part One: Do your part
Tawakkul is made of two-parts. Practically speaking, the first is comprised of your individual actions that show your effort towards the final goal. For example, on an exam, the ultimate goal that everyone would like to achieve is to get perfect, or at least within the 90s. To achieve this, the first part of Tawakkul would require eating well, sleeping properly, studying, taking proper notes and committing to other good study habits that a student should have. An example of the first part of Tawakkul is the example of when the Prophet (peace be upon him) migrated from Mecca to Medina, he did not just get up and go, nor did he decide to ‘wing it’ rather he prepared food and water, he got a good riding camel, he found someone to accompany him, and many more preparations took place.
Part Two: Leave it to Allah, completely.
The second is quite different from the first and deals with more of the spiritual aspect. Essentially, after you have put in all the effort possible, to have Tawakkul is to trust in Allah fully; to trust that passing this exam is not possible except by the mercy and the will of Allah. It is to pray, make dua’a (supplication/prayer) and to trust in your Lord that everything will go well Insha’Allah (God willing). Allah tells us “Allah loves those who put their trust in Him. ”
Virtues of Tawakkul:
There is a hadeeth that reveals the greatness of this act and because of its virtue, something we should all adopt Insha’Allah (God willing). ‘When Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) foretold of the seventy thousand people who shall enter Paradise without a reckoning, he described their qualities as: “… those who do not seek ‘Ruqyah’ (incantations), practice cauterization, nor follow omens but they put their trust in their Lord.
To have true tawakkaal is the key to success. It is to ‘tie your camel’ or in other words to study and take care of yourself and prepare as well as you possibly can. Secondly, it is to put your full trust in Allah and then do the test with that in mind.
“Indeed, Allah loves those who rely [upon Him]. ”
May Allah make this time easy upon us all and make us successful in the dunya (this life) and akhirah (life after death). May Allah help us clean our intentions and have true tawakkal upon Him. Ameen.
The author wishes to remain anonymous.