WHAT IS BARAKAH?
Barakah is a Divine Gift from Allah Ta’ala. He is the Bestower of all things. He is the Source of all Barakah.
تَبَارَكَ الَّذِي بِيَدِهِ الْمُلْكُ وَهُوَ عَلَىٰ كُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدِيرٌ
Blessed is He in whose hand is the Dominion,
and He is All Able over all things. ~ Surah Mulk 67:1
Definition of Barakah
والبركة ~ هي ثبوت الخير الإلهي في الشيء؛
فإنها إذا حلت في قليل كثرته، وإذا حلت في كثير نفع،
ومن أعظم ثمار البركة في الأمور كلها إستعمالها في طاعة الله عز وجل
“Barakah is the establishment of Divine Goodness to a thing,
so if it occurs in something little, it increases it. And if
it occurs in something much, it benefits. And the greatest
fruits of Barakah in all things is to use that Barakah
in the obedience of Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala”
BARAKAH IN RAMADAAN
Rasulullah Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam said: “Oh people! A very blessed, auspicious and great month dawns over you.
شَهْرٌ عَظِيمٌ مُبَارَكٌ
“Shahrun Azeemun Mubaarakun”
A month full of blessings, in which there is Barakah in the Rozi (sustenance) and livelihood of the Believer. The Hadith states:
شَهْرٌ يُزَادُ فِيهِ رِزْقُ الْمُؤْمِنِ
“Shahrun yuzaadu fihi rizqul mumin”
The Rizq (sustenance) of a Believer is increased (multiplied) in the month of Ramadaan. We see that the moment Ramadaan commences, our dastarkhaans and tables are filled with an abundance of food. We normally don’t see so many different types and quantities of food in other months.
Not only is there Barakah in our sustenance, but there is also an increase in our Ibaadah (worship). Normally it is difficult to engage in extra Nawaafil (optional) Salaah, but in the month of Ramadaan, Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala has made it such that He gives us the strength and the Himmat (courage) to excel in Ibaadah. We are focussed with Tilaawat (recitation) of the Qur’aan, Zikrullah and Dua (especially at the time of Iftaar, before Maghrib). The atmosphere is filled with Noor (illumination) and one can actually feel and sense the Barakah of Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala cascading down.
Furthermore, there is also ‘Barakah in the reward‘, which is significantly multiplied when performing good deeds. One who performs a Nafl act receives the reward equivalent of having performed a Fard act (out of the month of Ramadaan). Then what about the reward of performing a ‘Fard’ in Ramadaan?
The Hadith of Rasulullah Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam states :
مَنْ تَقَرَّبَ فِيهِ بِخَصْلَةٍ مِنْ خِصَالِ الْخَيْرِ كَانَ كَمَنْ أَدَّى فَرِيضَةً فِيمَا سِوَاهُ
وَمَنْ أَدَّى فِيهِ فَرِيضَةً كَمَنْ أَدَّى سَبْعِينَ فَرِيضَةً فِيمَا سِوَاهُ ،
Whoever draws nearer (to Allah) by performing any of the optional
good deeds (Nafl) in (this month) shall receive the same reward as
performing an obligatory deed (Fard) at any other time, and whoever discharges an obligatory deed (Fard) in (this month) shall receive the
reward of performing seventy obligations (70 Fard) at any other time. ~ Ibn Khuzaymah
Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala multiplies any Fard (compulsory) act performed in the month of Ramadaan by seventy times!
SOME WAYS TO ACQUIRE BARAKAH IN RAMADAAN
• 1 ~ By Adopting Imaan and Taqwa
The fundamental ingredients for Barakah are Imaan (Faith) and Taqwa (Piety).
Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala says :
وَلَوْ أَنَّ أَهْلَ الْقُرَىٰ امَنُوا وَاتَّقَوْا
“Walow Anna Ahlal Qura Aamanu Wattaqaw”
And if only the people of the cities had believed
and feared Allah, ~ Surah Al A’raaf 7:96
لَفَتَحْنَا عَلَيْهِم بَرَكَاتٍ مِّنَ السَّمَاءِ وَالْأَرْضِ
“Lafatahna Alayhim Barakaatin Minas Samaai Wal Ardhi”
We would have opened upon them Blessings from the
heaven and the earth; ~ Surah Al A’raaf 7:96
The explanation of this is that if the villagers, in all those towns around Makkah brought Imaan, had Taqwa, fulfilled the injunctions of Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala and refrained from all sins, then they would have received beneficial rain for their crops to grow.
They would have enjoyed a prosperous life with fresh and abundant produce. However, they rejected Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala and hence, He punished them. He totally destroyed them.
In a Hadith-e-Qudsi, Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala says :
إِنَّي إِذَا اُطِعْتُ رَضِيتُ
Inni Iza Uti’tu Radhitu ~
“(O my Servants)! When I am obeyed
I become happy (with you)”
وَإِذَا رَضِيتُ بَارَكْتُ
Wa Iza Radhitu Baaraktu ~
“When I become happy, then I Bless you”
وَلَيْسَ لِبَرَكَتَيْ نِهَايَةٌ
Wa Laysa Li Barakatee Nihaayah ~
“There is no limit to My Barakah”
When Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala decides to give, then those Blessings come pouring down on a person. There is no limit to those Blessings. This is because Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala is the Source of all Blessing. Allah Ta’ala says :
تَبَارَكَ الَّذِي بِيَدِهِ الْمُلْكُ
“Tabaarakal lazi Biyadihil Mulk”
Blessed is the ONE in whose HANDS is the Sovereignty
and in another verse :
فَتَبَارَكَ اللَّهُ أَحْسَنُ الْخَالِقِينَ
“Fatabaarak~Allahu Ahsanul Khaliqeen
So Most Blessed is Allah, The Best of Creators
Allah Ta’ala is the Source of all Blessing. The ability to grow is only from Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala. Productivity, being prosperous and having plentiful – not having a life of loss or suffering wretchedness and misery – is a blessing from Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala Alone.
He grants it to His Believing, loyal and obedient servants. Imaan, Taqwa and good deeds lead to Barakah in one’s life. A sinful person will live a life void of Barakah. He will suffer wretchedness and misery.
Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala says in the Qur’aan :
وَمَنْ أَعْرَضَ عَنْ ذِكْرِي فَإِنَّ لَهُ مَعِيشَةً ضَنْكًا
And whoever turns away from My remembrance – indeed,
he will have a narrow life ~ Surah Taha 20:124
That person who turns away from the remembrance of Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala, for him is a miserable, narrow and wretched life. He does not enjoy peace of mind, nor serenity, despite having abundant material possessions in his life. His life is narrow and tight. Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala deprives him of true Barakah. He is kept far away from the blessings of Allah Ta’ala. Some `Ulama have explained that the opposite of Barakah is L’anat (Curse), i.e. being far away from Allah’s Mercy and Blessings. May Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala protect us all.
• 2 ~ Joining FamilyTies
Barakah in one’s sustenance and life is achieved by joining family ties.
قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّم
مَنْ أَحَبَّ أَنْ يُبْسَطَ لَهُ فِي رِزْقِهِ، وَيُنْسَأَ لَهُ فِي أَثَرِهِ، فَلْيَصِلْ رَحِمَهُ
Whoever loves that he be granted more wealth and that his
lease of life be prolonged then he should keep good relations
with his Kith and kin.“~ Sahih Al Bukhari
The meaning of Barakah in Rozi :
A person may only possess little, but it will suffice all his needs and be of great benefit to him. A little food goes a long way and gives one abundant energy to obey Allah Ta’ala. One will be content and happy with one’s little earnings and not become overwhelmed by greed and avarice.
Remember a person’s earnings could be meagre, but it could bring him abundant happiness and comfort in his life, if he has been blessed with Barakah.
And, Barakah in life span :
This does not necessarily mean an extension in his lifespan, rather he will find blessings in his time. When one is able to obey Allah and make great contributions for His Deen within a short and limited lifespan, then he has been bestowed with Barakah. He is able to achieve in a short life, considerable amount of work, that would normally require one to have a very long life span. The examples of our Salafe Saaliheen are glaring examples of this Barakah.
• 3 ~ Giving Sadaqah (Charity)
Giving Sadaqah (Charity) is another way of acquiring Barakah. Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala says in the Holy Qur’aan :
يَمْحَقُ اللَّهُ الرِّبَا وَيُرْبِي الصَّدَقَاتِ
“Yamhaqullaahur Riba Wa Yurbis Sadaqaat”
Allah destroys interest and gives increase for charities
~ Surah Al Baqarah 2:276
Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala destroys interest and increases Sadaqah. In other words the effects of Sadaqah is that there is Barakah in the remainder of your wealth. When you took out money and gave it to somebody, your “eyes” saw your bank balance decreasing, but Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala promises Yurbis Sadaqaat, i.e. HE will increase the wealth that you have.
You may not see your money increasing, but Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala will most definitely place Barakah in what you have. So you will be able to fulfill all your expenses, tasks, responsibilities, and requirements with the money that you have.
On the other hand Yamhaqullahur Riba, if you are indulging in usury and interest, outwardly you are gaining in that your bank balance is rising, but Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala says that HE will destroy that wealth. You will be deprived of the Barakah of that wealth. How many a rich person has complained: “I have all the material possessions in the world, still whatever money I have got is just going into medical expenses, accidents, operations, sickness … it is just being wasted.”
Such a person does not enjoy his wealth.
• 4 ~ Seeking Repentance
Another way of gaining Barakah is through Istighfaar (Repentance).
قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّم
مَنْ لَزِمَ الاِسْتِغْفَارَ جَعَلَ اللَّهُ لَهُ مِنْ كُلِّ ضِيقٍ مَخْرَجًا
وَمِنْ كُلِّ هَمٍّ فَرَجًا وَرَزَقَهُ مِنْ حَيْثُ لاَ يَحْتَسِبُ
Rasulullah Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam said: If anyone continually
asks for pardon, Allah will make a way out of every distress,
a relief from every anxiety, and will provide for him
from unseen sources ~ Sunan Abi Dawud
Mun Lazimal Istighfaar : That person who adheres (clings) to Istighfaar, seeks repentance from Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala, makes Taubah, has a penitent heart, and turns to Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala saying Astaghfirullah sincerely – then Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala says : “We will make an opening for him from all grief, worry and sorrow and will make an opening for him from all difficult situations”.
Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala will even provide for him from unseen sources. We should have full Yaqeen (certitude) in the words of Rasulullah Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam.
• 5 ~ Partaking of Sehri
Hazrat Anas bin Malik Radiyallahu Anhu narrated that whenever they were fasting, Rasulullah Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam advised :
تَسَحَّرُوا فَإِنَّ فِي السُّحُورِ بَرَكَةً
“Partake of Sehri, for indeed there is a Blessing
in the Sehri.” ~ Tirmidhi
Tasahharu ~ ‘Make Sehri’ … because there is Barakah in partaking of Sehri. Even though we may have eaten just a few dates at Suhoor, the blessings of partaking of Sehri, enable one to keep the fast the entire day without getting hungry.
AN INSIGHTFUL ANALOGY PORTRAYING BARAKAH IN RAMADAAN
Our Salafe Sawliheen (pious predecessors) would prepare for Ramadaan well in advance. They would actually sense the Barakah of Ramadaan approaching and await the coming of Ramadaan, long before it commenced.
Rasulullah Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam himself, used to recite this Dua when the moon of Rajab was sighted, in anticipation of Ramadaan :
اللَّهُمَّ بَارِكْ لَنَا فِي رَجَبَ ، وَشَعْبَانَ ، وَبَلِّغْنَا رَمَضَانَ
“Allahumma baa-rik-lanaa fee-rajaba wa Sha’baana
wa bal-lig-naa Ramadhaana”
“O Allah, make the months of Rajab and Sha’baan blessed for us, and let us reach the month of Ramadhan.”~Tabarani
The `Ulama have also mentioned : The effect and Barakah of this one month, when spent properly, is such, that it wipes out all the minor sins of the person since the previous Ramadaan. The doors of Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala’s Rahmah, Maghfirah and Barakah are widely opened!
Hazrat Moulana Yunus Patel Rahmatullahi Alayh gave a beautiful example with respect to Barakah in Ramadaan. He said: “At the time of drought there is scarcity of water and every drop of it is precious. If there is a sudden downpour of rain, people will rush out with their buckets and fill them with this valuable rainwater. However, if any person goes outside with his bucket turned ‘upside-down’, then he will return with a completely ’empty’ bucket. Everyone will ridicule him and call him a fool!”
Similarly, in the month of Ramadaan, Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala’s Barakah pours down in torrents. It comes down in full force! We do not possess those spiritual eyes to “see” that Barakah coming down. However, we should treasure and value Ramadaan and not spend a second of it incorrectly, lest the Barakah is lost.
In order to enjoy Barakah, a person must :
~ Have Imaan, Taqwa and do righteous deeds
~ Join family ties
~ Accomplish his tasks in the early hours of the morning
~ Make Istighfaar
~ Partake of sehri
~ Say Bismillah when eating
~ Eat meals together
~ Eat from the sides of the plate
~ Lick one’s fingers after eating
~ Make Salaam when entering the home
However, staying away from all sins is of paramount importance, because sins obliterate Barakah.
Living our lives according to the commandments of Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala will bring us Barakah in our lives, our time, our actions, our dealings, our wealth, our families, and in all our activities Insha Allah.
May Allah Ta’ala grant us Barakah in Dunya and Aakhirah … Aameen
••• EXTRACTS from the book ~ The Reality of Barakah (Divine Blessings) In Islam
by ~ Moulana Naeem Motala DB