By Maulana Wahiduddin Khan for New Age Islam
06 September 2016
A hadith appears in the Sahih al-Bukhari, the Sunan Abi Dawud and the Musnad Imam Ahmad. In the Sahih al-Bukhari, this report reads: “God is amazed at those people who will enter Paradise in chains.” (Hadith no. 3010). In another hadith, the words “driven in chains” appear.
The experience of some believers that this hadith refers to is not something that will happen in the Hereafter. Rather, it is something that will happen in this world, before the Hereafter. Here, the word ‘chains’ actually refers to a compulsive situation. It means that some people will face such a compulsive situation that they will have no way out but to adopt a God-centred and Hereafter-oriented life, and in this way arriving in Paradise ‘in chains’, as it were.
This good fortune lies in store for those people whose hearts are aflame with sincerity and noble intentions. On seeing this sort of readiness in someone, God will bless him by arranging for such conditions that would, willingly or unwillingly, lead him to act in a manner that is pleasing to God. Problems become heavenly chains for a person who has the capacity to turn to God whenever he or she is faced with problems, whose heart has been so softened as a result of problems that he or she turns into a person who often remembers God.
If you allow the problems that you face to turn you into someone who is constantly grumbling and complaining, they will only destroy you. But if your problems lead you to develop the habit of introspection, they will become a source of mercy for you.