Convert your time into gold!



Convert your Time into Gold!


New Year, a time for self-accountability and not for forgetfulness


by Shaykh Ahmed Abdul Mujeeb Qasmi Nadvi (translated by Muhammad Owais Jafrey)



[Here are some things to ponder when greeting a new year]. As always we make new resolutions for the New Year.  We have new dreams to be realized and new hopes to be materialized. We set new goals for ourselves and our families. We plan new actions, chalk out new strategies and rededicate energies and efforts for our betterment in the coming year. We wish the best for ourselves and at the same time wish our friends and relatives greater success, prosperity, health and happiness through out the New Year.  The year that has gone by becomes a part of history. It has preserved all that we said, did or intended. A chapter which mirrors our moment to moment life is closed for ever. A time for sure is destined when we will revisit this and every chapter of our life, and will not be in a position to amend or correct any wrong. This phenomena of rolling years, this change of days into night and night into days, and this cycle of seasons, all are tied to and regulated by a grand and divine scheme. Aayah 190 of Surah Al’Imraan says:


There truly are signs in the creation of the heavens and the earth and in the alteration of night and day, for those with understanding.”


Aayah 62 of Al-Furqaan reads:


It is He, Who made the night and day follow each other – so anyone who wishes may be mindful or show their gratitude.”


 This on going change has a clear message for those who have “understanding” and are “mindful.” Such people know that this life is like tillage or farming for the Hereafter. Whatever one sows here, is going to reap the harvest in the Hereafter. Our actions during these fleeting moments of transient life form the very basis of our permanent and eternal life. As poet philosopher Iqbal said:


“It is but the action, which leads to Paradise or Hell

By his very nature man is neither from light nor fire.”


The Holy Qur’an emphasizes the value of life and time at different places in different ways.


At the outset of Surah Al-Fajr Allah (SWT) swears “By the Daybreak.”


From Aayah 1 to 14 in Surah Takweer the word “Iza” meaning “When” identifies a specific time in Allah’s scheme of things when such a mention is made:


 “When the sun is shrouded in darkness, when the stars are dimmed, when the mountains are set in motion…” Then again from Aayahs 15 to 19 Allah (SWT) mentions the predestined course of some of his creations by saying:


 “I swear by the planets that recede, move, and hide, by the night that descends, by the dawn that softly breathes…”


Aayahs 1-3 of Surah’Duha reads: “By the enshrouding night, by the radiant day, by His creation of male and female…”


The entire Surah Asr is a reminder:


By the declining day, man is [deep] in loss, except for those who believe, do good deeds, urge one another to the truth, and urge one another to steadfastness.”


Swearing at different occasions on different things, Allah (SWT) draws our attention to the importance of the investment of our present for the benefit of our future. Our obligatory prayers are time oriented like 5-time prayers, fasting, alms-giving, and pilgrimage are regulated by a schedule and indicate the importance of time.


Prophet (SAW) said: “Take good heed of five blessings before five things they are followed by: Life before death, health before sickness, leisure before preoccupation, youth before old age and prosperity before poverty.”


Hazrat Abu Bakr Siddique (RA) used to supplicate: “Yaa Allah, I submit toYou not to forsake us in adversity, hold us accountable while we are in the state of carelessness. Yaa Allah! Keep us away from those who are indifferent!” He (RA) said: “Vicissitudes of fortune are very strange phenomena, but man’s forgetfulness is far strange. One should cry over that particular day of his life, on which he did not do any good.”


Hazrat Abdullah bin Mas’ood (RA) used to say: “I am not ashamed of anything more than the day of my life I lost without adding anything good to it.”


Ameer-il-Momineen Umar bin Abdul Aziz (RehA) used to say: “This interchange of the night into a day and the day into the night is shortening your age, why than are you slow in action?” Some one once said to him: “Why don’t you defer this certain peace of work until tomorrow?” He (RehA) replied: “If I leave today’s work for tomorrow, how would I be able to do the work of two days in one?”


Hazrat Hasan Basri (RehA) addressing the mankind said: “You son of Adam, You are the total sum of days, a day spent takes a part of your life with it.”


Imaam Shafa’ee (RehA) exclaimed: “I lived for a long time among the devotees and lovers of Allah, and learned two things from their company: One, that time is like a sword, cut it with a good act, otherwise it will cut you with temptations. Second, keep your inner self busy in doing good, otherwise it will engage you in doing things bad.”


The dawn of the New Year should not be lost in celebrating it in frivolities; it should be utilized in doing constructive and positive work, in the praise and glorification of Allah (SWT), and in making supplications for peace within and peace without. Aayah 17-18 of Surah Rum says:


So celebrate Allah’s glory in the evening, in the morning – praise is due to Him in the heavens and the earth – in the late afternoon, and at midday.”


This is an occasion to express your gratitude to your Creator.  Aayah 54 of the same Surah declared:


It is Allah, Who creates you weak, then gives you strength, then weakens after strength, together with your grey hair: He creates what He will; He is the All Knowing, the All Powerful.”


Aayah 34 of Surah Ibrahim reminds us of Allah’s blessing:


“[He has] given you some of everything you asked Him for. If you tried to count Allah’s favors you could never calculate them: …”


This is the time for the accountability of the self as mentioned in Aayah 18 of Surah Al-Hashr:


“You, who believe, be mindful of Allah, and let every soul, consider carefully what it sends ahead for tomorrow; be mindful of Allah, for Allah is well aware of everything you do.”


Prophet (SAW) said: “Prudent and wise is he, who subjugated his self to obedience and worked for the life of the Hereafter, and helpless and woe-be-gone is he, who subjugated his self in the obedience of temptations and then had expectations from Allah for their fulfillment.” [Tirmidhi 6459]


Imaam Ahmad in his book “Kitaab-uz-Zuhd” quotes Umar Farooq (RA), who said: “Since it is easy for you to go, so go through self-accountability before you are held accountable, weigh yourself before you are weighed. Get prepared for the major and final hearing as nothing will remain secret when you will be brought for reckoning.”[p. 177]


Scholars have written that avoidance of self-accountability, carelessness, attitude of deferring self-reform, and belittling important issues lead to self-destruction. It is a state of self-deception of those who depend on the concept of divine pardon. Such a state facilitates commitment of sins and makes their avoidance hard.”[Ighasatullahfaan12:77]


Hafiz Ibn Qayyim recommends taking out some time before retiring to bed each night and going over the loss incurred and profit gained during the preceding day. Then

after having made an earnest repentance before Allah (SWT), go to bed determined not to commit a sin [or repeat a mistake]. Make it a habit. If one dies in such a state, he will die as a repentant, and if he lives, he will wake up focusing on good deeds.” [Kitab-ur-Ruh, p. 79].


Listen to Imaam Ghazali (RehA)’s advice. He warns in these words: “O man, be just! If a physician warns you to abstain from a certain food as being harmful, you display patience and commit to prevention while experiencing hardships. Do the messages of Prophets backed by miracles are less convincing for you than the physician’s advice? If a child scares you jokingly of a scorpion creeping in your dress, without a thought, you immediately take it off! Does the similarity in Prophets’ Messages and scholars is less important to you than the joke of a child? Why than knowing all the truth and having faith, you parry and evade though death is waiting in the ambuscade to pounce upon you without warning.” [Ahiya-ul-Uloom]


The gist of today’s talk is that this world with its splendors and beauty has a tremendous attraction to lure us and distract us from the very purpose of life. An aimless life is not liked by our Creator. The believers have been commanded in Aayah 5 of Surah Al-Bay’yina:


“…though all they are ordered to do is worship Allah alone, sincerely devoting their religion to Him as people of true faith, keep up the prayer, and pay the prescribed alms, for that is the true religion.”   


I conclude with a couplet of the celebrated 7th (H) Century Egyptian poet Allamah Muhammad bin Saeed Busayree (RehmA). He warns:


How long you will keep indulging in material pleasures? You will be responsible for whatever you do in this life!”


May Allah enable us to realize the importance of the gift of life and the countless blessings we have been bestowed with and utilize our time prudently and wisely and the way it pleases Allah (SWT) and His Messenger (SAW). Aameen!




SWT =  Subhanahu Wa Ta'Ala

SAW =  Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam

AS   =   AlehisSalam
RA =     Radhiyallaho anhu

RAnha= Radhiyallaho anha


The Friday Khutbahs are published to enhance your knowledge of Islam.  The references of Quran and Hadith are the approximate translation of the Arabic text.   The editors have not verified the accuracy of the the English translation.  The scholarly reader is encouraged to refer to the original Arabic script if there is any doubt.  Kindly notify us if the translation can be enhanced.