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True Happiness Is Only Found in the Qurʾān and Sunnah

Imām Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah

The path to true happiness is not found in self-help books, motivational speakers or the pursuit of leisure.

Imām Ibn Al-Qayyim (d. 751 AH) said: “There are two matters that are among the reasons for true happiness: One of them is to have detailed knowledge of all the means of good and evil. One should gain insight into those [means] through observation of worldwide occurrences, and experimentation, both carried out by oneself and by others, and from what has been conveyed about past and current generations.
The most beneficial of all [these means] is to contemplate the Qurʾān. For it is, from every conceivable angle, the most sufficient and complete disposer of this need. As it expounds on and clarifies all the avenues of good and evil. Then the Sunnah, for it is like the blood sister of the Qurʾān, and the second revelation. Whomsoever can divert all their attention towards these two sources will find them adequate, removing the need to look elsewhere. For they will show you good and evil and the path towards both [clearly] as if you are able to see it before you.

After that, if you were to contemplate the stories of past generations and how Allāh rewarded those who believed and disposed of the wrongdoers, you would find it congruent with what you have learned from the Qurʾān and Sunnah. As an actualised elaboration of what Allāh has related and promised. You would know then that His signs surround you, proving that the Qurʾān and its Messenger (ﷺ) are the truth and that Allāh always fulfils his promise. For history is like an elaboration upon paths towards good and evil as taught to us by Allāh and His Messenger.”

Source: Al-Dāʾ wa-al-Dawāʾ:35-36
Translated by: Riyāḍ al-Kanadī

Published: March 29, 2022
Edited: January 21, 2023


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