Worshiping Desires-How can I control them?

Surah Al-Furqan: 35-50

Do I worship my own desires, giving them preference over the commands of Allah? Which are those desires which I find difficult to control? Make a plan to overcome these.

by Sana Ahmad

Yes, I think I definitely do this. I am aware of the commands of Allah, yet sometimes I choose to follow what my own nafs dictates to me. For e.g., I sleep more than I should and even if I am awake I find it difficult to get out of bed, especially in the winter. I know that five to six hours of sleep are enough for me, and anything above that is a waste of time, yet I find this desire difficult to control, and often give in to it. Also, I eat unhealthy things which are not ‘tayyib’, and I eat even after more than one third of my stomach is full, especially if what I am eating is very delicious. I realize that these are the very basic desires, and if I cannot even control them, then I will be powerless when confronting any other desires. My plan to over come these is to make du’a to Allah for help, and remind myself upon whom I am giving myself preference when I follow my desires. Insha’Allah I hope that Allah will give me the strength to overcome these faults.

In order for me to overcome this I will have to start by rushing towards salah and making the commands of Allah a priority over everything else. I will have to let go of my desires and train myself to follow a command even if I’m in the middle of something less important or feeling lazy. If I constantly do this I wil inshaAllah be able to overcome my desires.

I do fall prey to my own desires most of the time. I think the best way to find out whether we worship our desires or not is to check how fast we rush to salah. If regardless of what we’re doing we hasten towards salah, that’ll be a great sign that we don’t give preference to our desires over the command of Allah.

by A Student of the Quran

I know I’ve fallen prey to my desires when

  • I delay in waking up for fajr salah thinking I’ll sleep a bit more before getting up and ending up praying salah right before sunrise
  • I’ve made the intention of reciting the Quran but end up doing something else
  • I think I’ll watch TV for like five mins but end up watching it for half an hour or even more
  • I spend too much time shopping or waste money on things which I don’t even need
  • I get preoccupied with materialistic things or matters of the dunya and forget the akhirah
  • I waste time online
  • I spend too much time with my phone
  • If I desire something I put in every effort to attain it

by Safia Kemal

My anger is the worst of my desires and the most difficult to work on. I have found two ways that have helped me control my reactions: Fasting has helped me and turning to just even reading of the Qur’an.  When I am fasting, somehow, I feel my body has slowed down, my reactions have slowed and also anger is curbed. So subhanAllah for this weapon against the shaitan’s way of making a person angry and regretting it later.  I need to be consistent in my fasting.

Lately, in the winter season, my sleep has affected my getting up in the morning to get to reading Qur’an in the mornings or offering nafl of the morning. Or even If couldn’t get out of bed the other day and was late for class! It is too cold to get up! But then I realize that it is just my desires that is allowing me to snuggle in the bed more than necessary. Even when I plan to sleep early to get up early, I am not able to do as planned. So I am aware that I am letting my desire get in the way of my ibadah and I do not want to be the one to have started something for Allah and then to give in to my desires. I have to just remember that I can die tomorrow or even God forbid lose my health and may not be able to do the ibadah I am able to do so.

About Quran Reflections

Al-Huda's branch at Khayaban-e-Sehar is one of the few Quran courses being regularly conducted in Karachi, Pakistan, where the mode of instruction and examination is English. The students and teachers have decided to upload their reflections on the Quran and class notes on this blog, in order to be available to a global audience for the latter's benefit and inspiration.
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4 Responses to Worshiping Desires-How can I control them?

  1. Safia Kemal says:

    I think this was a very relevant list of “time-wasters” which we don’t even realize we have wasted so much time on it. You look at the clock and then when you look again – woosh 1 hour would have gone by. I am sure we all do this but don’t even realize we are doing it. So Jkk for sharing this list and for this realization.

    • Wa’alaykum aslaam,
      That’s so true Safia.One thing that might help us in controlling desires would be that we become conscious about the fact that each opportunity we lose to do good would take us away from the place that Allah has created for us- Jannah.
      Also, remembering that death could overtake us at any second would be really helpful.

  2. very detailed and helpful. that verse at top sums up every thing.

  3. mudasserajaz says:

    Very detailed and helpful. That verse on top sums up everything.

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