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The Artist

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The Purpose of Life from an Islamic Perspective

A calamity that makes you turn to Allah is better for you than a blessing which makes you forget the remembrance of Allah.

By Hafiz Asadullah Khan

Once upon a time, a well-known painter was finishing his painting. It was an incredibly beautiful painting, which was to be shown at the airport during the upcoming Hajj season.
The painter wanted this painting to be a masterpiece. He worked on it for weeks, while sitting on the top of a 24-storey building. He was so consumed by, and excited with his painting that he unconsciously took a few steps backwards while admiring it, to get a better view. He didn’t look back when he walked backwards. He kept on walking backwards until he was just a step away from the edge of the terrace. Just one more step backward and he could have fallen to his death!
A man saw what the painter was doing and was about to shout at him to warn him when he realized that his shout might surprise the painter and thus make him take that fatal one step backward and fall down. So, he rushed to where the painting was standing, and then, taking a brush and some paint, he began to paint on the beautiful painting until it was completely damaged!
Seeing what was happening to his painting, the painter got very angry and sought to move forward to hit the man. However, some other people who were also present in the vicinity held him and showed him his last position, which had almost made him fall to his death.
Moral: Sometimes, we have painted our future with such beauty and have dreamt of beautiful days that we will spend with our loved ones, but then Allah seems to destroy our beautiful painting when Allah sees what danger lies ahead of us. Sometimes, we are angry and annoyed by what Allah has done to us, but one thing we have to keep in our mind is that our Creator is Most Wise and always keeps our best interests in mind!
So, when Allah, in His Infinite Wisdom, tests us with a situation that we think is difficult or takes away something that in our mind was good for us, we need to remember that perhaps it may not as we had supposed. Perhaps if we had continued in our way, it might have been harmful for us. Whatever Allah decreed for us is actually better for us, for He is All-Wise and All-Knowing.
Allah says:””¦and it may be that you dislike a thing which is good for you and that you like a thing which is bad for you. Allah knows but you do not know.” (Surah Baqarah: 216)
A calamity that makes you turn to Allah is better for you than a blessing which makes you forget the remembrance of Allah.
(The writer is founder, Global Quran Academy, Bangalore, and can be reached at [email protected])