Strength or Weakness: What is Our Destiny?


“Some of you are called to die, and some are sent back to the feeblest old age, so that they know nothing after having known (much)” (Al-Hajj, 22:5)

This verse struck me. Because I couldn’t understand this aspect about older people, and the decline in mental strength and emotional capability as they age. I assumed that surely through life experience and years aged, a person would be mentally stronger and emotionally more secure. In reality of course – this is not always the case. The rise in age related diseases and memory decline, as well as other nervous system disorders ( directly linked to age) is testament to this.

Allah has told us clearly; some will not know anything after having known much.

The whole verse reads: “Surely we created you from dust, then from a small seed, then from a clot, then from a lump of flush, complete in make and incomplete, that we may make clear to you; and we cause what we please to stay in the wombs till an appointed time, then we bring you forth as babies, then that you may attain your maturity; and of you is he who is caused to die, and of you is he who is brought back to the worst part of life, so that after having knowledge he doesn’t know anything” (Al- Hajj 22: 5)

 This describes beautifully the life cycle of a human being and its various stages. We were all created weak.  We’re all vulnerable whilst young. Most of us are allowed to gain maturity. We develop intellect and strength. Some amongst us die, and are taken from this life whilst they are strong and healthy. Others return back to weakness and a decrease in knowledge and ability – almost as though they are reversing – and going back in terms of ability, vulnerability and intellect.

This is a huge test for us. Being old and weak can clearly be extremely difficult. Any of us can find ourselves in this position – as Allah highlighted in this verse. Just imagine how bad this time period must actually be… Allah has used such powerful wording here, which is translated as the “feeblest” or the “worst part of life” by translators.

How would a person feel in that position?

Many people in their prime years are strong, active, healthy and independent. Then as they age they get weaker, less mobile, suffer debilitating health issues and become dependent on others.

This could have detrimental effects. It could alter their emotional stability and self esteem. It could decrease their confidence levels and ability to rationalise. Perhaps this is why we are greatly rewarded for looking after, caring for and showing respect to our parents and elders. None of us are immune from this life cycle. If Allah wills it could happen to us when we are older — no matter how strong or intelligent we may be today. We must fear Allah and be humble; taking care not to judge others. We must remove our complacency of sound intellect — because, the one who gave us our ability can just as easily take it away —  if he wills. We must show gratitude and be thankful…

Making effort to be kind, obey and respect our parents is an Islamic obligation.

It may well be you tomorrow in that same scenario… Reflect. Treat the elderly as we would want to be treated.

This is an example of how just one verse of the Quran can drastically improve our homes – relationships and lives –  if we understand it and abide by Allah’s commands.

Without looking into the depth of the Quran, and reflecting on what we read, many of us remain deprived of the profound wisdoms behind every verse. Allah is the wisest and knows best in every regard. On an individual level, family level or societal level this obligation brings benefits and adhesion between us.

I seek refuge in Allah and supplicate to him to keep all our minds, hearts and bodies intact until we meet him on the Day He resurrects us, and calls us to account. Ameen.



Never give up. Never lose hope. Always have faith, it allows you to cope. Trying times will pass as they always do. Pray to Allah and just have patience, your dreams will come true. Insha'Allah. So put on a smile. You’ll live through your pain. Know it will pass and strength you will gain.

Some of us can fall deeply or occasionally get sucked in to negative, stressful, depressive feelings and thoughts  when facing difficulties. But, how can we overcome this?


The Quran clearly states:

“Do people think that they will be left alone because they say: “We believe,” and will not be tested?” (Quran, 29:2)

“We will test you with a certain amount of fear and hunger and loss of wealth and life and fruits of your toil.” (Quran, 2:155)

Life is temporary and is full of different tests for each individual; we are all in a series of tests, whether we consider ourselves liberated or trapped — whether we consider ourselves to be career or family orientated — or whether we wish to be politically correct and say that both are equally achievable simultaneously.

We don’t know what other people may be suffering with, so, we shouldn’t judge others, or assume that they are in 100% bliss, all day and every day. Everyone has had their own set of challenges embroiled on them. The testing, daily striving, struggling and challenges will always be there for all those who entered this life, until they cease to be in his life — whether we accept this or not.

This may feel like a sticking point or mental block that is difficult to digest or overcome. But, it’s an easy concept to grasp and remember. In life we know that we will continue to be tested every day and although we make so many choices, none of us have any proper control in the circumstances we will find ourselves in when we wake up, or even whether we will wake up or not. Yet we do make our own choices every day and try to feed our sense of control.

We may spend so long trying to work out what it was that would’ve made us happy if we could go back in time and choose all over again. No matter what we choose though, the outcome may not have necessarily been any better.

People looking in at our life may think that it is the most enviable life. Yet internally, we toil over the problems we want to eradicate and want to change, in order to eliminate the emptiness and sadness we feel; but, thinking and analysing too much can often create bigger problems than the ones we are trying to solve.

Some of us may conclude that we don’t want to change anything, but, the satisfaction and happiness is still missing. Some days may be worse than others, and the thought of having to rely on medications, if we let this negativity and stress linger  — may be petrifying. Turning to our faith as a stronghold can give us the strength to continue.

Life is temporary. Allah is the most powerful and can control every heart and mind. Our one true lord, Allah, who created us, and controls the entire universe is the only true source of comfort and peace. He is the only one who deserves to be worshipped and obeyed. He knows of every minute detail and worry in our lives.

Reflecting on the essence of our faith, and establishing a strong connection to it can transform our hearts and lives. This takes sincere effort; this effort is easy when we believe. We can only believe fully when we know; so, learning more about Allah and his commands is an essential prerequisite for the ability to believe. Through seeking that knowledge our hearts and minds get stronger.

He (SWT) can change everything; He just has to say ‘Be,’ and it is. There is light at the end of every tunnel and Allah can restore our happiness in a split second, if He wills.

“Whoever disbelieves in Taghut (false worship) and believes in Allah, then he has grasped the most trustworthy handhold that will never break. And Allah is All-Hearer, All-Knower.” (Quran, 2:256)

This belief and trust in Allah is a great source of strength, but, it can only come through increasing our Imaan by increasing our knowledge and good deeds.

To read more on this click here .