The Islamic perspective of Coronavirus Covid—19
All praise is for Allah Taála at all times and may peace and blessings be upon our beloved Prophet Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم
Across the world, people are worried about the spread of Coronavirus (Covid-19). Experts are working overtime as the death toll and the number of infected people spiral. Precautionary measures are being adopted worldwide to limit its spread. From an Islamic perspective, it is recommended to adopt precautions as long as they are proportionate and do not contravene Islamic teachings.
There is, however, an important dimension to this epidemic which has not been given the attention it deserves. As people of Imaan, it is our unshakable belief that such calamities and diseases come into existence only with the order and will of Almighty Allah, who uses a variety of methods to remind, and at times punish His creation for their flagrant violations. Allah Almighty mentions in the Quran: “And whatever affliction befalls you, it is due to what your actions have earned, and He pardons much.” (42:30) In another verse, Allah Almighty mentions: “Corruption has appeared in the land and the sea due to what the hands of people have earned, so that He may make them taste a part of that which they have done, so that they may return to righteousness.” (30:41)
It is therefore imperative for us to reflect and try to understand the possible underlying reasons for this crisis. In the specific context of this virus, the following portion from a lengthy statement of our beloved Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم comes to mind: “Immorality never appears among a people to such an extent that they commit it openly, but such plagues and diseases will spread among them that did not occur among their predecessors” (Ibn Mājah, 4019).
Anas ibn Malik R.A reported the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم as saying, “It is from the conditions of the Last Hour that knowledge would be taken away and ignorance would prevail (upon the world), alcohol would be drunk, and adultery would become rampant” (Muslim 34:6451)
These texts illustrate the importance of introspecting and correcting our actions when such epidemics occur. Reflecting on the state of Muslims and non-Muslims, who have all been enveloped in this epidemic, we find that there are some major sins that have increased substantially and openly over the past few decades. They include:
Disregard for the Sunnah of our Prophet Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم
Nudity, free-mixing and immodesty
Homosexuality and transgenderism
Adultery and fornication
Abuse of electronic devices, pornography, music
Murders, oppression and other crimes
Drugs, alcohol and other intoxicants
It is therefore imperative that along with adopting the precautions advised by health experts, we realize that such flagrant and blatant violations of Allah’s laws attract His anger and wrath. We must turn to Allah Almighty, repent for our sins and inaction and commit to His obedience. This epidemic should also strengthen our belief in Allah Almighty and serve as a reminder that Allah is The Almighty and Powerful, He created us and to Him we shall return, and the entire universe is powerless in front of him.
In addition to adopting precautions and abandoning sins, the following are some actions that will attract the mercy of Almighty Allah and end this epidemic:
1- Perform the five obligatory Ṣalāh daily; for healthy men perform them in Jamaat in the Masjid. Shariah has emphasized performing Salah with congregation. It is a sin to leave it without a valid excuse. However, individuals showing symptoms of the virus must not attend the Masjid and public places. Likewise, women and children, the elderly and those with weak immune systems are excused from performing Salah with congregation.
- Regularly do Istigfār and Tawbah (seek repentance). Almighty Allah says in the Quran: “And Allah would not punish them while they seek forgiveness”. (8:33)
- Regularly read Durūd (send salutations on the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم) Almighty Allah says in the Quran:
“Indeed, Allah confers blessings upon the Prophet, and His angels [ask Him to do so]. O you who have believed, ask [Allah to confer] blessings and peace upon him [the Prophet] ”. (33:56)
- Give optional charity. The Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم said: “Treat your sick ones by giving Sadaqah (charity)” (Tabraani)
- Exercise Ṣabr (patience), Shukr (gratitude) and Tawakkul (reliance o Almighty Allah). Almighty Allah says in the Quran: “O you who believe, seek help through patience and prayer.
Surely, Allah is with those who are patient”. (2:153) And: “Say, nothing shall ever happen to us except what Allah has decreed for us. He is our Maula (Lord, Helper and Protector). And in Allah let the believers put their trust”. (9:51)
- Supplicate to Allah with masnūn duas for well-being and protection, knowing with full conviction that everything is under the control of Allah. A few Duas that we should recite frequently are:
- Anas ibn Mālik (RA) narrates that the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم would say:
الَّلهُمَّ إِنّي أعُوذُ بكَ منَ اْلبَرَصِ وَالْجُُنونِ وَالْجُذَاِم وَِمنْ سَِّيئِ الَأسَْقاِم
“Allahumma inni a-oodhubika minal barasi, wal junooni, waljuzaami, wa min sayyil asqaam”
“O Allah, I seek refuge in You from vitiligo, madness, leprosy, and bad diseases” (Abu Dāwūd,1554)
- ʿUthmān ibn ʿAffān (RA) narrates that the Messenger of Allah صلى الله عليه وسلم said: “Whoever recites three times in the morning and evening:
بسِْم للهِ اَّ لذِي لَا يضُُّر معَ اسِْمِه شَيٌْء في الَأرْضِ وَلَا في السَّمَاِء وَهَُو السَّمِيعُ اْلَعِليم
Bismilla hillathi la yadurru ma’ismihi shayun fil ardhi walaa fissamaa e wahuwas Samee ul Aleem
“In the Name of Allah, with whose Name nothing in the earth or the heaven can be harmed, and He is the All-Hearing, the All-Knowing”, nothing will harm him. (Tirmidhī, 3388; Abu Dāwūd, 5088 )
- ʿAbdullāh ibn ʿUmar (RA) said, “The Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم would not abandon these words in the evening
and the morning:
الَّلهُمَّ إِنّي أسَْأُلكَ اْلَعفَْو وَاْلَعاِفَيةَ في الدُّْنيَا وَاْلآخِرَِة، الَّلهُمَّ إِنّي أسَْأُلكَ اْلَعفَْو وَاْلَعاِفَيةَ في دِيِني وَدُْنيَايَ وََأهِْلي وََماِلي، الَّلهُمَّ اسْتُْر عَوْرَاِتي وَآِمنْ رَوْعَاِتي، الَّلهُمَّ احَْفظِْني منْ بيِْن يدَيَّ، وَِمنْ خَلِْفي، وَعَنْ يِميِني، وَعَنْ شمَ اِلي، وَِمنْ فَوِْقي، وََأعُوذُ بَعظَمَِتكَ أَنْ أغْتَالَ مِنْ تَْحِتي
Allahumma inni as-alukal-‘afwa wal-‘aafiyah fid-dunya wal-akhirah. Allahumma inni asalukal-‘afwa wal-‘aafiyah fi deeni wa dunyaya wa ahli wa maali. Allahummastur ‘awraati, wa amin raw’aati. Allahummahfadhni min bayni yadayya, wa min khalfi, wa ‘an
yameeni wa ‘an shimaali, wa min fawqi, wa ‘a-oodhu bika an ughtaala min tahti .
O Allah, I ask You for forgiveness and wellbeing in this world and the hereafter. O Allah, I ask You for forgiveness and wellbeing in my religious and worldly affairs, and my family and my wealth. O Allah, conceal my faults and keep me safe from my fears. O Allah, protect me from in front and from behind, and on my right and on my left and from above, and I seek refuge in Your greatness from receiving unexpected harm from beneath me.’” (Abu Dāwūd, 5074)
- أعُوذُ بكِلمَاتِ لله الّتاّماتِ من شَّر ما خََلقَ –
A’udhu bi kalimaat tillaahit taammaati min sharri ma khalaq
I seek refuge in the Perfect Words of Allah from the evil of what He has created.” (Saheeh Muslim)
- أَ عُوذُ ﺑِﺎ ﻟَِّﻠﻪ وَقُدْرَِتِه منْ شَّرِ ما أجِدُ وَُأحَاذِرُ –
A’udhu billaahi wa qudratihi min sharri maa ajidu wa uhaadhiru
I seek refuge in Allah and in His Power from the evil that afflicts me and that which I apprehend (Saheeh Muslim)
- لا إَلهَ إَّلا أنتَ سُْبحَاَنكَ إِنّي كُنتُ منَ الظَّاِلمِين –
Laa ilaha illa anta sub-haanaka inni kuntu minadh dhalimeen
None has the right to be worshipped but You (O Allah), Glorified are You. Truly, I have been of the wrong-doers. (Quran 21:87)
- حَسِْبَي للهُ لا إَلهَ إلَّا هَُو عََلْيِه ت وَكَّلْتُ وَهَُو رَبُّ الَعرْشِ الَعظِيم –
Hasbiyal-laahu la ilaaha illaa huwa
alayhi tawakkaltu wa huwa rabbularshil-`adheem.
Allah is Sufficient for me. None has the right to be worshipped except Him, upon Him I rely and He is the Lord of the exalted throne. (Quran 9:129)
Remember that while an epidemic or virus does not spread by itself, rather it is decreed by Allah, the Shari’a orders us to protect our Imaan and our health by employing precautionary measures, which was the general practice of our beloved Prophet Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم. Once the Prophet Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم noticed a Bedouin leaving his camel without tying it. He صلى الله عليه وسلم asked him: “Why don’t you tie your camel”? The Bedouin answered “I place my trust in Allah.” The Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم told him: “Tie your camel first then place your trust in Allah”. (Tirmidhi)
Follow all professional, legal and medical guidance. If you have any symptoms, immediately seek medical advice from a doctor.
May Allah have mercy on us and protect us all. Aameen Some of the information in this brochure was adapted from an article by Mufti Yusuf Shabbir of islamicportal.co.uk
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