Time has always been a focus in Islam. In Surah Al Asr, Allah (swt) says, ‘By Time. Indeed, man is ata Loss. Except those who believed and did righteous deeds and advised each other to truth and advised each other to patience.’ When Allah takes an oath of something, it is of utmost importance. Here in the first verse, when He says “By Time,” it makes Time a critical institute. It’s just a word but holds a lot more than we can imagine.
When it comes to Time, as mentioned, it is about the Time that has passed and the Time that is present and yet to come. The passing of every second is essential in our lives. We hear of sayings like ‘Time and tide wait for none,’ here, the Quran explains the same but more precisely, that passing Time is an essential fact of our life and the Time lost cannot be back. Whatever life span we have is to prepare for our better future in this world and the Hereafter.
Islam revolves much around Time. As Muslims, we must be conscious of Time in whatever we do, especially in various acts of worship like prayers, Hajj, fastings, etc. Allah has prescribed separate invocations for morning and evening. When we do actions on Time, we benefit from its blessings, and it is impactful.
Let me explain with an example if for no reason I want to pray my Fajr prayer at night or after sunrise, will it be acceptable? Can I perform Hajj during the month of Muharram? No, I can’t.
According to a Hadith of Sahih Muslim, Abu Dharr reported: The Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) said to me: O Abu Dharr, you would soon find after me rulers who would make their prayers dead. You should performa prayer at its prescribed Time.( Book 4, Number 1354). There are numerous hadith and verses of the Quran which emphasize that things should be done in the given Time.
Let us check how punctual and disciplined we are in following these prescribed timings. When we sit on the couch playing Xbox or a Play Station, or binge-watching our favorite show or a live sports match and we hear the azan (call for prayer). Are we quick enough to answer the call and rush to pray? That is food for thought. Think and act upon it.
In a hadith, Ibn Abbas reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace, and blessings be upon him, said, “Take advantage of five before five: your youth before your old age, your health before your illness, your riches before your poverty, your free time before your work, and your life before your death.”
(Source: Shu’ab al-Imān 9767, this is graded sahih according to Sheikh Al-Albani)
If we start focussing on Time Management, we will take advantage of the above five as advised by the Prophet peace be upon him, and we can see the blessings in our lives.
Every soul has to taste death, and not a single person is aware of his death. It is the knowledge of the unseen which only Allah, the Almighty, knows. Before we end this short journey in this world, let us prepare ourselves with the best provision for the Hereafter. Let us all strive together to perform all acts of worship and our daily activities on Time.