What Good is there in Distraction? (Hadith No. 756)
Volume 2, Book 13, Number 756:
Narrated Jabir bin ‘Abdullah:
While we were praying (Jumua Khutba & prayer) with the Prophet (p.b.u.h), some camels loaded with food arrived (from Sham). The people diverted their attention towards the camels (and left the mosque), and only twelve persons remained with the Prophet. So this verse was revealed: “But when they see some bargain or some amusement, they disperse headlong to it, and leave you standing.” (62.11)
وَإِذَا رَأَوْاْ تِجَـرَةً أَوْ لَهْواً انفَضُّواْ إِلَيْهَا وَتَرَكُوكَ قَآئِماً قُلْ مَا عِندَ اللَّهِ خَيْرٌ مِّنَ اللَّهْوِ وَمِنَ التِّجَـرَةِ وَاللَّهُ خَيْرُ الرَزِقِينَ
But when they saw a transaction or a diversion, [O Muhammad], they rushed to it and left you standing. Say, “What is with Allah is better than diversion and than a transaction, and Allah is the best of providers.” [Qur’an 62: 11]
To get some detail on this incident, read it in Tafsir Ibn Kathir.
Some important points:
- Companions were humans. They did commit mistakes and errors in their lives, NOT due to weakness in Iman, but general lack of training. This does not lower their rank or status in our eyes whatsoever because of Allah’s statement:
Allah is pleased with them and they are pleased with Him. Such people are the party of Allah. Truly it is the party of Allah who are successful. (Surat al-Mujadala, 22)
- Whenever something went wrong, Prophet (SAW) corrected it, and/or Allah (SWT) sent down revelation regarding it. All such incidents have been recorded in the books of Ahadith and history. It’s a blessing for us, because we can derive great benefit from them. We must learn from these incidents, teach others and make sure not to repeat those mistakes again.
- We must never come to any conclusions before knowing the background or both sides of the coin, to be more precise.
- When in a halaqah of Quran/Hadith/knowledge, NEVER be distracted. It is Shaytaan who wants to distracts you and does not want any good to come to you. No matter what comes up, the knowledge you’re gaining in that halqah is far more better and way more important than any worldly thing. So FOCUS!
- Generalize this rule: focus on what you’re doing. What good is there in distraction after all?
- Trust Allah when He says this:
“What is with Allah is better than diversion and than a transaction, and Allah is the best of providers.“
- Obey Allah. Follow the Sunnah. Be cool.
Your Musalla Should Be.. (Hadith No. 719)
Volume 1, Book 12, Number 719:
Once the Prophet prayed on a Khamisa with marks on it and said, “The marks on it diverted my attention, take this Khamisa to Abu Jahm and bring an Inbijaniya (from him.)”
The place where you pray: your musalla, or the saff at the masjid should be as plain as possible. ‘Marks’ or design on it distracts you from prayer. It’s true. One gets lost in the design instead of concentrating on the prayer.
Bring in a plain prayer mat for yourself and feel the difference in Salah. :)
Importance of Sutra & Woman Interrupts Man’s Prayer (Ahadith 473-474)
There have been a few corrections in Hadith no 472. Mistakes were due to my lack of knowledge. Don’t forget to check it out.
Narrated Ibn ‘Umar:
Whenever Allah’s Apostle came out on ‘Id day, he used to order that a Harba (a short spear) to be planted in front of him (as a sutra* for his prayer) and then he used to pray facing it with the people behind him and used to do the same while on a journey. After the Prophet , this practice was adopted by the Muslim rulers (who followed his traditions).
This Hadith shows us the importance of having a sutra in front of the Imaam while he leads a congregation in prayer. When praying alone, one should also try to develop the habit of defining his prayer space by keeping a sutra in front of him.
*Sutra is a screen that a person uses to define his prayer space, such as a wall, door etc. The bare minimum requirement for sutra is: that it should be as tall as the length of one hand.
Narrated ‘Aun bin Abi Juhaifa:
I heard my father saying, “The Prophet led us, and prayed a two-Rak’at Zuhr prayer and then a two-Rak’at ‘Asr prayer at Al-Batha’ with an ‘Anza (planted) in front of him (as a Sutra) while women and donkeys were passing in front of him (beyond that ‘Anza).”
The words “beyond that ‘anza” are of immense importance here. A woman passing in front of a man whose praying invalidates his prayer. It’s not because women are impure (najis) but scholars have said that it’s because she’s a temptation for men. [Ref: islmaqa.com, no. 12717]
It was reported from ‘Abd-Allaah ibn al-Saamit that Abu Dharr said: “The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: ‘If any one of you stands up to pray, then he has a sutrah [an item placed in front of a praying person as a “screen”] if he has something the height of the back of a saddle in front of him. If he does not have something the height of the back of a saddle in front of him, then his prayer is invalidated if a donkey or a woman or a black dog passes in front of him.’” I [‘Abd-Allaah] asked, “O Abu Dharr, what is the difference between a black dog and a red or yellow dog?” He said, “O son of my brother, I asked the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) the same question, and he said, ‘The black dog is a shaytaan (devil).’” (Narrated by Muslim, 510).