Leader's meeting with the President and cabinet members

Seeking forgiveness is compensating harms we have done to ourselves and others

Divine forgiveness results in correcting our mistakes and compensating for the harm that we have done to ourselves and to others. If human beings seriously go after rectifying their mistakes and sins, the divine path will be paved and human beings will have a good destiny.

Quranic mission is primarily the issue of monotheism. Returning to God and asking for His forgiveness are discussed immediately afterwards. This applies to people of all levels, ranging from prophets to people at lower levels, but the sin for which we repent is different in our case from the case of pious people. "Do not compare the affairs of the righteous with your own." However, even those people need to ask God for forgiveness. They too might make mistakes. "Disgraceful acts never separate from creatures in both worlds, only God knows." They, too, need to ask for forgiveness and compensate for their failure and relative hesitation. In our case mistakes and sins are not few: we commit different kinds of mistakes. This is the essence of what I want to say.

Let me quote a narration here: "Close the door to calamity by asking for forgiveness." In the Sura I recited before, God says: "He will provide you with a goodly provision." In other words, making good use of one's life will be possible through asking for forgiveness and repenting to Allah the Exalted.

There is another narration, which says: "The best praying is asking for forgiveness." This is from Dua Sha'baniyya: "O God, I have no doubt that you will not disappoint me in what I have demanded you all through my life." What is this need? This need -- on which a lifetime has been spent -- is asking for divine forgiveness.

Divine forgiveness results in correcting our mistakes and compensating for the harm that we have done to ourselves and to others. If human beings seriously go after rectifying their mistakes and sins, the divine path will be paved and human beings will have a good destiny. The main problem with us humans is that we neglect our mistakes, we fail to recognize the need for correction, we fail to reform ourselves and rectify our actions. If such cases of negligence are eliminated and this determination develops, all mistakes will be corrected. At the first stage -- which is the preliminary stage and among our greatest responsibilities -- we correct ourselves, which in fact is the basis. That is to say, everything we do is a prelude to reforming ourselves, a prelude to achieving divine satisfaction. "Take care of your souls. He who errs cannot hurt you when you are on the right way." [The Holy Quran, 5: 105] The purpose of all efforts and struggles is to make God satisfied with ourselves and to achieve the kind of perfection that has been ordained for us since the beginning of creation.

The other stage is communal forgiveness and social reform. We should reform the collective path and goal and collective performance to the best of our capabilities. This is the clearest example of the effect of asking God for forgiveness and the genuine meaning, content, and essence of asking for forgiveness. This should not be considered as difficult. If we have determination, it is easy and we can do it. These nights you have read in Dua Abu Hamza Thumali: "And truly traveling to You is short in duration." The main thing is determination, taking action and making efforts. "O God, You will not disclose Your creature's secrets except when they have already disclosed them in public." We create a rift between ourselves and God with our own hands, with our mistakes. There is no distance between us and Allah the Exalted. We are very close. If we achieve any success, this is a sign of God's mercy. If you manage to ask for forgiveness from the bottom of your heart, and then develop the determination to take action, be sure that divine grace and attention will be bestowed upon you, that you are being attracted and pulled towards God. In several places of the Holy Quran, God has attributed repentance to Himself: "Then he turned to them (mercifully) that they might turn (to Him)." [The Holy Quran, 9: 118] God repented so that human beings would repent. What is the meaning of repentance? Repentance means attention and return. God turned His attention to you, and this caused your hearts to become inclined towards Allah the Exalted.

 

October 30, 2005

Tags

  • Forgiveness
  • repentance

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