PRAYER ( DUA )
When we come to understand the “Dark Age”, a question crops up in the mind as to what steps should be taken to reach the real goal. Wherefrom should we get a guiding light? How can we save our belief from the devil’s attack? When we try to find an answer to these questions in the revealed books of various religions, we are wonderstruck to see that there is a consensus with regard to its answer. Among the remedies suggested, the prayer has been unanimously recommended as to be the solution. There is a Tradition of the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H.)
“Prayer is the weapon of the believer.”
It is a unique spiritual approach that is a support for the old, a weapon for the young, and an amulet for the child. It is a stick for the blind and the last support for the helpless and resourceless person. When material sources are exhausted and no ray of hope is visible, it is ‘prayer’ that holds man in its strong arms and takes him out from the slough of despondency, enabling him to face the hardships of life. The righteous persons during the present “Dark Age” are facing the same situation. All the resources are being used against them. A few weak persons are not in a position to change the whole devilish system. Such a big revolution is not within their power. So this crushed and oppressed set of persons has no choice except to resort to prayer and supplication to God Almighty. The good human values in this age are breathing their last. The ghosts of tyranny, oppression and disbelief are devilishly dancing. The only way out left is to pray before God Almighty and say:
“O Lord, come and save us. Cause thy face to shine; we shall be saved. O Lord God of hosts, how long wilt thou be angry against the prayer of thy people? Thou feedest them with the bread of tears and givest them tears to drink in great measure. Turn us against, O God of hosts, and cause thy face to shine; and we shall be saved.”
Psalms No.80 (2-7)
- O God, how long shall the adversary reproach? Shall the enemy blaspheme thy name forever? Why withdrawest thou thy hand, even thy right hand? Pluck it out of thy bosom.”
Psalms No.74 (10-11)
“I am weary of my crying; my throat is dried: mine eyes fail while I wait for my God. They that hate me without a cause are more than the hairs of mine head.”
Psalms No.6 (3-4)
“Is his mercy clean gone forever? doth his promise fail forevermore? Hath God forgotten to be gracious?”
Psalms No.77 (8-9)
“Hear me speedily, O Lord, my spirit faileth: hide not thy face from me.”
Psalms No.143 (7)
“O Shepherd of Israel,… come and save us.” Psalms No.80 (1-2)
“O Lord, wherefore doth the way of the wicked prosper? Wherefore are all they happy that deal very treacherously? Thou hast planted them, yea, they have taken root: they grow, yea, they bring forth fruit: thou art near in their mouth, and far from their reins. How long shall the land mourn?”
Jermiah Chapter 12(1-2, 4)
“How long will thou forget me O Lord? How long wilt thou hide thy face from me? How long shall my enemy be exalted over me?”
Psalms No.13 (1-2)
- O Lord God of hosts, the God of Israel, awake to visit all the heathen: Be not merciful to any wicked transgressors. They return in the evening: they make a noise like a dog and go round about the city. Behold, they belch out with their mouth: Swords are in their lips: for who, say they, doth hear?”
Psalms No. 59 (5-7)
“Break their teeth, O God, in their mouth: break out the great teeth of the young lions, O Lord. Before your parts can feel the thorns.”
Psalms No. 58 (6, 9)
“Arise, O Lord: Let not man prevail: Put them in fear, O Lord; that the nations may know themselves to be but men.”
Psalms No.9 (19-20)
“Rise up, Lord, and let thine enemies scattered: and let them that hate thee flee before thee. Return, O Lord, unto many thousands of Israel.”
Psalms No. 10 (35-36)
“O Lord, revive thy work in the midst of the years, in the midst of the years make known.” Habakkuk Chapter 3 (2)
“So let all thine enemies perish, O Lord: but let them that love him be as the sun when he goeth forth in his might.”
Judges Chapter 5 (31)
“O God end the griefs of this ‘ummah’ by sending him.”
Dua-e-Ehad, Mafatih-ul-Jinan-P 540)
“At his hand, get the nonbelieving oppressors killed.”
( Mafatih P-541 )
“Get the heads of those who lead astray, crushed by him.”
( Mafatih ).
- Till none of them remains on the face of the earth and wipe out the signs of tyrants. All the supporters of the oppressors are killed. Destroy all the treacheries they have committed. Devastate the impious and kill their Pharaohs. Pull down their flags, ruin their rule, and scatter away their enemies. Burn their pulpits and break their swords. Reduce their idols to ashes, spill their blood erase their forts, and destroy their houses.”
- O Lord, I complain that our Prophet has been taken away from us and the Divine Guide has also been made to disappear from us. I complain about the small number of righteous people and a great number of our enemies. I also complain for the dominance of our enemies and also for the hardest tests to which we have been put.”
( Mustudrik-ul-wasail )
“We cannot enjoy the pleasures of our Eid festivals, because every Eid reminds us of the sufferings of our spiritual leaders. It was their Divine right to rule over the world. But this right has been usurped.”
( Mikial-ul-Makarim )
‘O Lord, fulfill the promise You made with me and with the other downtrodden people, You had promised, ‘I will gather them that are sorrowful for the solemn assembly, who are of thee to whom the reproach of it was a burden. Behold, at that time I will undo all that afflict thee.”
Zephaniah Chapter 3 (18-19)
We pay our compliments to the awaited Divine Guide whose appearance was promised to all the nations of the world. The promises made with all the believers of the past are to be fulfilled through the awaited Divine Guide. O Lord, perish all the enemies of that Divine Leader and his forefathers. These enemies may belong to the genii or human beings. When we see through the prayers of the past prophets, their deputies, and our Imams, We find that most of these aim at the establishment of Right and destruction of the evil. Where the prayers for the ruination of the enemies of Right have been made, the well-being of the companions and waiters of the Divine Leader has also been prayed for, because a friend’s friend is also a friend. The prophet David made his prayer as follows:
“Unto thee, O Lord, do I lift up my soul? O my God, I trust thee: Let me not be ashamed, Let not mine enemies triumph over me. Yea, let none that wait on thee be ashamed.”
Psalms No. 25 (1-3)
- Let not them that wait on thee, O Lord God of hosts, be ashamed for my sake: Let not those that seek thee be confounded for my sake, O God of Israel.” Psalms No. 69(6)
“O Lord, let them that love him be as the sun when he goeth forth in his might.”
Judges Chapter 5 (31)
It is imperative to pray for the establishment of Divine Rule as was done by Christ when he said:
“After this manner therefore pray ye: our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed by thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.”
Matthew Chapter 6(9-10)
Jesus Christ taught his apostles to pray in the following words:
“Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy Kingdom come.”
St.Luke Chapter 11 (2)
Jesus Christ lifted his eyes to the sky and prayed as follows:
“Father the hour is come: glorify thy son.”
St.John Chapter 17(1)
“Thy kingdom is an everlasting kingdom and thy dominion endureth throughout all generations. The eyes of all wait upon thee.
Psalms No.145 (13+15)
When we look at the words of the prayers, we find that in some of them, it has been wished to see the Lord or the face of the Lord. It is impossible to see the Lord with physical eyes. What actually is meant by that is to see the representative of the Lord.
“O Lord God, to whom vengeance belongeth, O God to whom vengeance belongeth, show thyself.” Psalms No. 94 (1)
“Hear me speedily, O Lord: my spirit faileth:
Hide not thy face from me.”
Psalms No. 143 (7)
“As the heart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God. My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God: when shall I come and appear before god?”
Psalms No.27 (9)
The prophet Moses, under the direction of God Almighty, told the people to bless each other in the following words:
“The Lord bless thee, and keep thee: the Lord make His face shine upon thee and be gracious unto thee.”
Psalms No. 6(24-25)
“With the voice together shall they sing: for they shall see eye to eye when the Lord shall bring again Zion.”
Isaiah Chapter 52 (8)
In a similar manner the other prophets and Holy Imams have directed us to pray for ourselves in the following words:
“O Lord, be gracious unto us: we have waited for thee: Be thou their arm every morning, our salvation also in the time of trouble.”
Isaiah Chapter 33 (2)
“O God, give me life till I see the time of the Divine Leader.”
It becomes clear from the preceding references that all the prophets prayed themselves and taught their believers to pray for the establishment of Divine rule. They provided some topics for the prayer and specified the words also for the same. They prescribed some preconditions for the acceptance of prayer so that one who prays should not remain deprived. For example:
- Then if my men who are attributed to me pray humbly and request to see me and leave the bad habits, I shall accept their prayer, forgive their sins, and restore their authority.”
“Therefore also now, saith the Lord, turn ye even to me with all your heart, and with fasting, and with weeping, and with mourning: And rend your heart, and not your garments and turn unto the Lord your God: for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repenteth him of the evil.”
Joel Chapter 2 (12-13)
“The Lord saith woe unto you that desire the day of the Lord! To what end is it for you? The day of the Lord is darkness, (because you are wicked) and not light.”
Amos Chapter 5 (18)
“Seek ye the Lord, all ye meek of the earth, which have wrought his Judgment, seek righteousness, and seek meekness.”
Zephaniah Chapter 2 (3)
“And when you prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets that may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, they have their reward. But thou, when prayest enter into thy closet, and when you have shut thy door pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly. But when you pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they should be heard for their much speaking. Be not ye, therefore, like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of before ye ask him. After this manner therefore pray ye: our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come.” Matthew Chapter 6 (5-10)
“And he (Jesus Christ) spoke a parable unto them to this end, that man ought always to pray, and not to faint: saying, There was in a city a judge, which feared not God, neither regarded man; and there was a widow in that city; and she came unto him, saying, Avenge me of mine adversary. And he would not for a while: but afterward, he said within himself, Though I fear not God, nor regard man: yet because this widow troubleth me, I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming shall weary me. And the Lord said, Hear what the unjust judge saith. And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them? I tell you he will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless when the son of man cometh shall find faith on the earth.”
Luke Chapter 15 (1-8)
- And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting and drunkenness and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares, for as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth. Watch ye therefore, and pray always that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the son of man.”
Luke Chapter 21 (34-36)
It was said by Prophet David:
“Hearken unto the voice of my cry, my king, and my God: for unto thee I will pray. My voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O Lord, in the morning will I direct my prayer unto thee and will look up. For thou art not a God that hath pleasure in wickedness.” Psalms No.5 (2-4)
Jesus The Christ said: “O my disciples pray continuously so that you may be given. Because he gets who asks. The door is opened for one who knocks. One who begs receives. Do not look at plenty of words because the Lord knows your hearts. The prophet Solomon was asked, O my slave, give me your heart. I assure you that those are rare who can rightly pray. I truly tell you that really the person who prays without concentration jokes with God. The person who goes for a prayer and does not make himself ready for it his act is no less than the former. He turns his back to the Lord and attends to the devil. Then Jesus Christ gives an example from general observation. He says; that when someone treats you badly and begs your pardon then he slaps you with both hands how will you forgive him? Similarly Lord does not show any mercy to those whose lips pray O God show mercy to us but they have a love for sin at their hearts and always think out the ways for new sins.
Some persons requested Jesus Christ to teach them some prayer. He replied, Consider, what will you say when Lord God orders to punish you with capital punishment? So when you pray say the similar. The words of your prayer should be like this: O our Lord, O when worship, thy name should be Hallowed. We may see your rule among us. Your will should be done in the earth as it is done in the heaven.”
When we review of the preceding prayers and preconditions for the acceptance of the same, we see that there is a small list of ‘dos’ and ‘don’ts’ that are prerequisites for the acceptance of prayers:
- To follow the orders of God in letter and spirit.
- Sincerity and concentration.
- To show humbleness, humility, and self-abasement.
- To pray with fast.
- To weep and mourn.
- Tender heartedness
- In addition to solitude and seclusion, to make congregational prayer.
- Not to show haste viz; not to give up the prayer if it is not fulfilled soon. There should be constancy in prayer.
- To repeat prayer time and again.
- Full concentration on the words of prayer.
- Meekness, Patience, and tolerance.
- To demand the vision of God and establishment of Divine rule in preference to personal demands and
- To be ever-ready for accountability.
To give up the following goes a long way for acceptance of prayer.
- To give up sins, even thinking about the same.
- To leave the affectation and hypocrisy.
- To give up the long long hopes.
- To eat only those things which are allowed by religion and are lawfully acquired.