Reply of istakhara
Mu' meneen Brothers and Sisters,
As Salaam Aleikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh. (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)
One of our brothers/sisters has asked this question:
salam u alaikum.
I read your question and answer archive quite regularly and find it very helpful in better understanding Islam. Thank you for doing such a great service to us all. May Allah reward you. I have read in detail about Istikhara on your website and still have a few concerns. I hope that like always you will be able to help me out in the light of the quran and sunnah.
Just recently me and my husband both agreed that I should go back to school. In this regard, we were faced with a few very difficult choices. We both decided to do istikhara for the purpose. I have been doing the dua for over 7 days and my husband for a little less than 7 days. So far we are both equally confused. Infact both the options that we were considering seem to be becoming easier. So one moment I am tilted towards one option and the other moment I am completely tilted towards the other. What does this mean? If both the options seem to be getting easier then which one do you choose? How much longer should I continue to do istikhara and can i continue to do the istikhara even if i am menstruating?
Secondly last night (after fajr) I woke up due to a horrible nightmare. although the nightmare had nothing to do with the decision at hand, it left me wondering if there was any link with the istikhara. I have heard that dreams after fajr are from shaytan and should be ignored. Is that true?
Please help me out. We are faced with deadline and we are still totally confused. I dont understand how both the options seem to be getting easier. How do we determine which path to take?
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Reply of istakhara
In the name of Allah, We praise Him, seek His help and ask for His forgiveness. Whoever Allah guides none can misguide, and whoever He allows to fall astray, none can guide them aright. We bear witness that there is none worthy of worship but Allah Alone, and we bear witness that Muhammad (saws) is His slave-servant and the seal of His Messengers.
Hadrat Saad ibn abi-Waqas (r.a.) reported that the Prophet (saws) said, "Istikharah (seeking guidance from Allah) is one of the distinct favors (of Allah) upon man, and a good fortune for the son of Adam is to be pleased with the Judgment of Allah. And a misfortune of the son of Adam is his failure to make istikharah (seeking Allah's guidance), and a misfortune for the son of Adam is his displeasure with the Judgment of Allah."
Contrary to popular belief, it is not as if whenever one performs istakharah, one will get an immediate answer from the Merciful Lord in ones dream (although it may happen!), or something tangible; but what happens is, if one completely puts ones trust in Allah Subhanah and makes a choice between the permissible alternatives, one will easily be able to recognize the permissibility of their choice made.
If the choice made is right, Allah Subhanah will make that option easily available and clear all the difficulties in the path of obtaining that good option; and as one sees the ease with which the option is carried out, he/she will realize that this is indeed the right choice and the result of the istakhara was in the affirmative; and it is the fulfillment of this option which is acceptable and pleasing to Allah Subhanah.
But if the choice is wrong and detrimental in the future, Allah Subhanah will make the happening of the option difficult and one will experience blockages and difficulties in the way of achieving that option; and at some stage; when after trying everything in ones power the option is still not coming to a conclusion, one will realize that this was not the right choice and the result of the istakhara done was negative.
Respected sister, assuming that you did the istakhara seeking Guidance from your Lord whether or not you should join a school, and your heart is unable to decide with conviction one way or the other.the best thing to do would be to go ahead and apply to join the school of your choice.
If the school readily accepts you, and you find that everything in the path is made easy.know with conviction that this act of yours is with the Approval of your Lord and its path will be blessed for you.
But if during the application and enrollment process you find that at every turn your path is being blocked by one thing or another, that no matter how hard you try, a wall is being placed in front of you.know with absolute conviction that this path is neither approved nor blessed by your Lord and you should immediately take steps to not only stop the enrollment process, but make your heart content that this step was unprofitable for you in the Perfect Knowledge of your Lord Most Gracious.
Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allahs Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me alone. Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.
Your brother and well wisher in Islam,