Work in Progress (No, really)

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Perspective on Dua

After completing my dua, I had a thought -- when we (read I) pray for our own success in something (education, work, sports, love, etc.), are we indirectly praying for the downfall of others?

The way I ended up rationalizing it is that we're not praying for others to fall, but rather for our own bolandi. To be the most successful. But, that answer doesn't really satisfy me either, to be honest.

Any thoughts Alexander and AJ? (Others can chime in too).


  1. Maybe God brings misfortune on those that were wrongdoers from the fortune He brings on you. Either way, if it is a prayer that is not selfish or un-Islamic or against God's plan, it will happen and that's all that matters. God cares for those best who remember Him.

    1. Two quick points.

      1. I'm not talking about bringing the punishment of God on a people or the transgressions of society (and so forth). I'm talking more personal and more "everyman" type of dua'in

      2. Continuing along from the end of point 1, I'd like to add these types of prayers are selfish (to an extent). Is there anything wrong in being selfish? I think, as with all things, to a certain extent you need (and should) be selfish. It's your problems, issues and most importantly, your God.

  2. I'll just also quote my tweet earlier today, for my own reference.

    uahmed1: Arguably the boldest dua I've ever made in my life. The 18,000 plus people with m may be the reason the dua is fulfilled.

    4 hours ago · reply · retweet · favorite

  3. The Holy Quran (2.149) says to "Vie with one another in doing good works".

    I think this can be taken to mean that God looks favorably upon you if you are striving for spiritual success but if I recall correctly, many of our religious leaders quote this verse during other competitions as well, such as sports tournaments. While you aren't really praying for downfall of others, you are still trying to out-do your other Muslim brothers, so in a sense, in the back of your mind, you are asking God to provide you with the success of the trophy rather than your brother. This probably could apply to a lot of situations like you mentioned, for example, securing a competitive job/promotion/grant, but I think this isn't really a means to an end. God won't really punish the people who didn't win the trophy or get the job that you got, but he might grant them something equal or better in a different situation.

    Anyways, those aren't the clearest of my thoughts, but hopefully they offer some more fuel for the discussion...