Holding on to Hot Coals
عَنْ أَنَسِ بْنِ مَالِكٍ قَالَ قَالَ رَسُولُ الله -صلى الله عليه وسلم- « يَأْتِى عَلَى النَّاسِ زَمَانٌ الصَّابِرُ فِيهِمْ عَلَى دِينِهِ كَالْقَابِضِ عَلَى الْجَمْرِ
Anas ibn Malik(Radi Allahu anhu) narrated Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه و سلم ) said : “ There will come an era when a person patiently practicing his religion will be like holding on to hot coals.”[At-Tirmithi 2260]
This Hadeeth has accurate relevant information along with precise guidance.
The living conditions in the Last days
The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم ) informed us about the living conditions towards the end of times. He explained that during those times everything good that leads to piety will decrease, and evil and everything that leads to it will be common. In that time period the righteous people trying to practice their religion will be few. That small number of people will face extreme difficulty with regards to their faith. The people challenged with those trials will be similar to a person trying to hold on to hot coals. There will be wide spread trials of misguidance, doubtful matters, indistinguishable issues and rampant atheism. Moreover the people living in that time period will face the constant temptations of worldly luxuries and the struggles for its glamour. Towards the end of the World there will be an extensive amount of Muslims with weak faith. Muslims will face extreme social isolation and find little, if any help from others.
Nonetheless, the Muslim adhering to his religion will be able to overcome those obstacles. Practicing Islam with knowledge and certainty in faith is the only way to withstand those trials and temptations. The believer whose faith is firm is the best of creation and is the noblest in the Sight of Allah.
How to act as a Muslim in the era of chaos.
This hadeeth offers guidance for every Muslim. They must prepare themselves for these courses of events and recognize that these events must unfold. The slave of Allah who withstands those dangers and hardships with patience and faith will earn a high status with the Most High. Allah will help him do the things He loves and earn His Pleasure. Help from Allah is earned based on a person’s faith.
This Hadith is a Proof for Prophet hood.
The description the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم ) gave resembles the era we live in now. Nothing remains from Islam except its name and nothing is present from the Quran except its writing! The Muslims’ alive today suffer with weak Iman. Their hearts are divided and their governments are split. Hatred and hostility have distanced the Muslim brotherhood. The hidden and apparent enemies of Islam are working publicly and privately against our religion through atheism and materialism. Radical movements are shoveling away the appearance of Islam. The waves of turmoil are clashing between the elders and the youth. There are propagandists for immorality which make living difficult.
People’s Behavior and Attitude towards Religion in this Era.
The people’s concern will be the vanities of this world. They will become so engrossed in chasing this world that it would be the extent of their knowledge and their only importance. In the pursuit of this world people will be either happy or sad. The vanities of this world cause people to abandon the life of the Hereafter. They build for this life while demolishing everything in the next life. When they begin to chase behind the pomp and glitter of this lowly life they will ridicule Islam and everything connected to it; including the Sunnah. These people are boastful and arrogant. They take pride in their laws built on atheism which produced evils witnessed by Allah’s Slaves.
This hadeeth verifies what to expect in the face of the absolute evil, the clashing waves of turmoil, the devastating disaster of sin, and the ongoing trials of wickedness. These things all point to a gloomy future.
Nevertheless, the believer doesn’t despair of Allah’s Mercy and His Help. The believer doesn’t restrict his belief to the causes of harm, rather he constantly looks at his heart and understands that Allah is the Most Generous and the All- Giver. Therefore the freedom from grief and sorrow is in front of his eyes. Allah promised and He never breaks His Promise. After hardship comes ease from stress and anxiety.
The Believer faced with these living conditions says on his tongue.”
لا حول و لا قوة إلا بالله, و حسبنا الله و نعم الوكيل, على الله توكلنا, اللهم لك الحمد و إليك المشنكي , و انت المستعان و بك المستغاث و و لا حول و لا قوة إلا بالله العلي العظيم.
There is no might or strength except with Allah. Allah is Sufficient for us, and He is the Best Disposer of Affairs. We trust Allah. Oh our Lord all praises are due to you, we complain to You, We seek Your Assistance and we seek Your Relief. And there is no Might or Strength except with Allah the Mighty Most High.
After this the believer does whatever he has the ability to carry out with his faith, giving advice and calling others to practice Islam. He is content with whatever he has even though it might not be a lot. He removes some of the evil or at least tries to reduce it, and if he’s unable to do both Allah said:
“And whosoever fears Allah and keeps his duty to Him, He will make a way for him to get out (from every difficulty).”[ At-Talaq 2]
“And whosoever puts his trust in Allah, then He will suffice him. Verily, Allah will accomplish his purpose. [ At-Talaq 3]
“And whosoever fears Allah and keeps his duty to Him, He will make his matter easy for him.[ At-Talaq 4]
Taken from Sharh Jawa’mi by Al-Alamah Abdur Rahman As-Sa’di Hadith #99
Translated by :
Abu Aaliyah Abdullah ibn Dwight Battle