Sophrosyne, bet you didn’t know — the word even existed in the vocabulary?

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Peace of mind, contentment, happiness and freedom from worries and anxiety — these are what everyone wants, and probably these are the ways in which people can have a good life and find complete happiness and joy.

There are religious means of achieving that both natural and practical means, but no one can combine all of them except those He put guidance upon, although other people may achieve some of them, they will miss out on others.

There follow a summary of the means of achieving this aim for which everyone is striving. In some cases, those who achieve many of them will live a joyful and a good life; in other cases, those who fail to achieve all of them will live a life of misery and hardship. And there are others which are in between, according to what the means he is able to attain.

This is the greatest and most fundamental of means. As The Lord says:

أَوْ أُنثَىٰ وَهُوَ مُؤْمِنٌ فَلَنُحْيِيَنَّهُ حَيَاةً طَيِّبَةً ۖ وَلَنَجْزِيَنَّهُمْ أَجْرَهُم بِأَحْسَنِ مَا كَانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ

“Whoever works righteousness whether male or female, while he (or she) is a true believer, verily, to him We will give a good life (in this world with respect, contentment and lawful provision), and We shall pay them certainly a reward in proportion to the best of what they used to do (i.e. Paradise in the Hereafter)“ | QS 16:97.

The Almighty tells us and promises us that whoever combines faith with righteous deeds will have a good life and a good reward in this world and in the Hereafter.

The reason for that is clear, those who believe in Allah — with sincere faith that motivates them to do righteous deeds that change hearts and attitudes and guides them to the straight-path in this world and the Hereafter — follow principles and guidelines by means of which they deal with everything that happens to them, be it the causes of happiness and excitement or the causes of anxiety, worry and grief.

They deal with the things that they like by accepting them and giving thanks for them, and using them in good ways. When they deal with them in this manner, that creates in them a sense of excitement and the hope that it will continue and that they will be rewarded for their gratitude, which is more important than the good things that happen to them. And they deal with bad things, worries and distress by resisting those that they can resist, alleviating those that they can alleviate, and bearing with goodly patience those that they cannot avoid.

Thus as a result of the bad things they gain a lot of benefits, experience, strength, patience and hope of reward, which are more important and which diminish the hardships they have undergone and replace them with happiness and hope for the bounty and reward of Allah. The Prophet PBUH expressed this in a saheeh hadeeth in which he said:

’How wonderful is the situation of the believer, for all his affairs are good. If something good happens to him, he gives thanks for it and that is good for him; if something bad happens to him, he bears it with patience, and that is good for him. This does not apply to anyone but the believer.“ | Narrated by Muslim, no. 2999.

The Prophet PBUH told us that the believer is always gaining and the reward for his deeds is always multiplying, no matter what happens to him, good or bad.

In this way a person may forget about the things that are making him worried and distressed, and he may become happy and more energetic. This is another means that believers and others have in common, but the believer is distinguished by his faith, sincerity and hope of reward when he occupies himself with that knowledge which he is learning or teaching, or with the good deeds that he is doing.

The work with which he occupies himself should be something that he likes and enjoys, for that is more likely to produce the desired results. And Allah knows best.

And one should focus only on the present day, and focus one’s efforts on getting things right today. For if a person is focused on that, this means that he will do things properly and forget about worry and regret.

When the Prophet PBUH said a Du‘a or taught a Du’a to his ummah, as well as urging them to seek the help of Allah and hope for His bounty, he was also urging them to strive to attain the thing they were praying for through their own efforts and to forget about the thing which they were praying would be warded off from them. Because Du’a (supplication) must also be accompanied by action.

And your Lord knows best.

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