We want perfection in everything around us. We would all want the weather to be perfect, for example, but we have to learn that we have no control over it. When the weather is not the best, how do we react? If we accept, we may see beauty in what we accept. If not, there will be bad weather outside and there will be bad weather inside us.

If things are not perfect, we are aggrieved, agitated, unhappy and disillusioned. As a result our spirit suffers, our rūḥ and religion suffers. Allāh has told has what we need to do – to remember Allāh, to focus on Allāh, to accept that the world around us was never meant to be perfect. It is organised chaos. There are always highs and lows.

The Prophet ﷺ had a very beautiful and prized camel, Qaswa, which would always win in a race. Once Qaswa lost and the Sahabah became very saddened. The Prophet ﷺ said to them that it is a duty on Allāh that nothing rises in the world except that Allah brings it down again. This is the reality of the world. There are highs and lows. Everything that rises in the dunya, rises to fall. That is the cycle of life. We rise and we fall by the end of our life. Nothing lasts forever. Even the greatest of structures in the dunya have collapsed and will collapse. This is not a world of permanency and perfection. It is how we deal with things around us that is important.

[This excerpt is based on a talk entitled ‘The Pursuit of Perfection’ delivered by Shaykh Riyadh ul Haq on 16th December 2018]