Worshipping In The Time Of Youth


Hadrat [1] Imam-i Rabbani says in the 35th letter of the third volume of his Maktubat:

When a person is young, the desires of the nafs [2] surround him. The time of youth, however, is the most profitable time for learning knowledge and worshipping. During this time, which is the time when lust and fury invade a person, to carry out one commandment of the Shari'at [3] is much more valuable than the same worship which is done when one is old. [Especially if other obstacles join them, the worship which is done by overcoming them will increase the blessings so much that only Allahu ta'ala knows how much. ] For the difficulty and trouble in doing a worship against obstacles will exalt the honour of a worship to the skies.

Acts of worship that are done easily and without any obstacles to prevent them will remain lower. It is for this reason that the higher ones among men have become higher than the highest ones of angels. This is because man worships among obstacles. But angels obey the commandments without any obstacles. During the time of war, the value of a soldier increases and his one insignificant deed done in combat becomes more valuable than all his efforts done in the time of peace.

The desires of youth are things which the nafs and the Devil like, but they are the enemies of Allahu ta'ala. The things that conform with the Shari'at are the things which Allahu ta'ala likes. It is not worthy of wise and intelligent people to please the enemies of Allahu ta'ala, while, by doing so, angering the real owner who gives all blessings. May Allahu ta'ala bless us with doing reasonable actions and protect us against being deceived by the nafs, by the Devil, or by the sayings and writings of the enemies of religion!

[1] Hadrat: title of respect used before the names of great people like and Islamic scholars.
[2] nafs: a force in man which wants him to harm himself religiously; an-nafs al-ammara. A negative force within man prompting him to do evil. (Nafs-i ammara). Nafs is ammara by creation, that is, it always wishes evil and harmful deeds to be done. It is reluctant to obey the Shari'at. The nafs of a man who obeys the Shari'at and makes progress in the way of tasawwuf becomes mutmainna. It wishes to obey the Shari'at.
[3] Shari'at: (pl. of Shari'a) i) rules and commandments as a whole of the religion. ii) religion.