Spirituality

How I beat Depression

I was depressed, and then I learned About Surah Ad-Duha and Surah As-sharh

Some of our bad decisions eventually lead us to a situation where we feel blind, depressed, anxious and hopeless. During this phase we get tired of searching for the solutions of our problems. At times, it’s not necessarily a BAD Decision, the odd situations may arise from nowhere in our life and we remain clueless about them. Then a process begins which further pushes us down to the ground until we lose hope completely and it seems that there is no way out. Then we curse ourselves, we blame other people around us, we spend nights thinking about the possible failure. The amplitudes of our thought process change dramatically and it further drags us into a severe depression zone.  At this point, none of the motivational lectures work for us, empathetic friendly conversations too go in vain.

True muslims, who practice Salat, Dua, and Dhikr face more depression when they feel that their Dua’s and Salat are not being answered. They lose patience with Allah. Then the destruction of their Imaan begins, and that is the worst phase. Let me tell you my experience now, the experience which made me feel strong and even made me grateful to Allah for putting me in that situation.

My father faced a huge loss in business, we were financially collapsed. I had to leave my studies for earning. Some years later when we reached a better level I left my job for business. I could have progressed in my company, but due to some issues with workplace I ran out of patience and took an impulsive decision of leaving that job and try my luck in business. I tried my best for running the business but it didn’t go well, and my father too faced another financial stroke same time. I was totally shattered then. I had no job, no money, no hope for establishing a new business, and a feeling of doing a job again with less pay was depressing. Financial condition at home was getting bad day by day and I had no way to start towards.

I am a practicing muslim, alhamdolillah. I turned to Allah, offered Namaaz, recited qura’n more than usual. I kept trying patiently but situation remained same. Then my Imaan began diminishing. I thought Allah might be punishing us for the sins, then a counter to this feeling was that why Allah doesn’t punish those who commit major sins. I thought Namaaz, Duas, are not going to help, these are just act of rituals. I began to feel more depressed and thought of quit trying anymore. I spent various sleepless nights, even thought of earning from unlawful ways. I lost appetite, I lost concentration, I lost Khushu’u in Namaz, I began to behave badly with close ones and I did many other things what a depressed person would do.

Then a night came, when I was searching for some motivational videos. I saw a thumbnail, the video was named “Depression” and it was an Islamic video. I took it for granted and skipped to other videos. After listening to long and futile motivational speeches I clicked on that Islamic video. It was the explanation of Surah-Ad-Duha, and those 20 minutes pulled me out of the negativity, refreshed my Imaan, and I offered 2 raka’h immediately with gratitude and thanks to Allah.

I came to know that this was the 2nd Surah revealed to Prophetpbuh  after a long break. After first revelation “Surah Alaq” the Prophetpbuh felt scared and didn’t turn up to the cave. Hepbuh didn’t want this revelation and remained afraid of it, hepbuh couldn’t understand that hepbuh was chosen for Prophethood. Second revelation took as long as 2-3 years, and during this period Prophetpbuh overcame the fear and began to wait desperately for the message from Allah. He ran out of patience and thought if he was abandoned by Almighty, he felt if he had committed a sin and as a result Allah is unhappy, He even thought of Jumping off the mountain because of this depression. On the other hand, he was now ready for the revelation, he himself was waiting for it. It was then Allah revealed the second Surah Ad- Duha… Later Surah As-sharh…and answered to Prophet (p.b.u.h), thus to whole Mankind…

Surah Ad-Duha

And (by) the forenoon, And (by) the night when it (comes) with its dark stillness! In no way has your Lord disregarded you, and in no way has He disfavored you. And indeed the Hereafter will be more charitable (i.e., better) for you than the First (i.e., the present life). And indeed your Lord will eventually give you so that you will be satisfied. Did He not find you an orphan, so He gave (you) an abode, And He found you erring, so He guided (you), And He found you in want, so He enriched (you)? Then, as for the orphan, then do not subdue (him), And as for the beggar, then do not scold (him), And as for your Lord’s favor, then discourse about it! (i.e., proclaim it).

Surah As-Sharh

Have We not expanded your breast for you, And laid aside from you your encumbrance. Which weighed down your back, And did We not raise for you your remembrance? So surely with difficulty comes ease, Surely with difficulty comes ease. So when you are at leisure, (i.e., not on labor)  And on to your Lord then be desirous (i.e., of His Grace).

During the explanation and interpretation of these Surah I came to know that Allah vowed by Day and Night, for telling us that our life is similar to the process of Day and Night, this cycle is obvious and as important as Day and Night. I came to know that even Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) faced situation when he didn’t even have a single Date to eat, and spent many nights like that.

I was ashamed of my impatience and depression, I hated myself for questioning Allah’s mercy. I offered 2 rakah’s immediately and asked for forgiveness, I recalled my sins, I analyzed myself, analyzed Allah’s favor upon me and my family. I thanked Allah subhanahu wa taala for putting me in this situation so that I could analyze my sins and Allah’s favors. I realized this situation was a test to check for how long do I have patience? How do I behave? How do I keep my Imaan Firm? How many forgotten sins do I recall? How do I ask for forgiveness?

Brothers and Sisters, our reasons for depression and distress may be different but we are nothing if compared to our beloved Prophet (peace be upon him). Even the man, for whom this world was created, and the man who is most loved by Allah, had faced hardship of hunger, fear, depression, poverty, distress and yet remained grateful to  Allah subhana hu wa taala.  Then Who we are?

by Syed Haider Ali

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