In the name of Allah, Most Merciful, Most Compassionate; blessings and peace be upon Prophet Muhammad s.a.w.
There is no god but He, Praise and glory to Him; Far is He from having the partners they associate unto Him. (Tauba 9:31)
At a ‘masjid’ near my house during a 'tazkirah' recently, 'jemaah’ (congregators) were kept awake by a fiery orator by one local top motivator. He began his lesson by questioning the ‘jemaah’ what they understand with the phrase ‘kejayaan dalam hidup’ (success in life).
"Is getting a lot of money an indicator as success in life? It’s sad when so many people shy away from ‘solat’ (prayers) just to gain those material gains.
“Hey, brother; let’s me stress again and again that your ringgit (wealth) will of no use when you were buried in your grave. Only your ‘iman’ (faith) and ‘amal’ (good deeds) would be able to help you. So what’s the key to be successful in life?”
The motivator said that the key to success is to take religion and practice all its teaching. “Those who upheld religion should have no worries because the world would be at his or her feet but those who are after the world, they would lose the world and worst of all, doomed in the Hereafter.”
He then gave 10 tips (keys) to have a successful life. They are:
1. Be a good listener and if you don’t know, don’t hesitate to ask experts on the subjects such as an ‘ustaz’ (religious teacher) or a scholar.
2. You have to practice ‘sabar’ (patience) and the ‘tonic’ to have this trait is to do ‘zikrullah’ (remember Allah SWT by reciting words in praise of Him).
3. Always be thankful (syukur) and the key to it is to expand charity (sadaqah).
4. Fear of Allah SWT (takwa).
5. Make du’a (offer prayers). 6. Do not be proud or arrogant (takabbur)
7. Do not skip your ‘solat’ (prayers).
8. Uphold to the truth, do good deeds as much as you can.
9. Uphold the oneness of God (Tauhid).
10. Perform hajj.
On the same topic, Malaysian Islamic Youth Movement (ABIM) listed 32 tips (ways and means) to be successful in this world and Hereafter. They are:
1. Believe in Allah: The one and only Creator, Sustainer, Giver of Life, Owner, Inheritor and God of the universe. Allah has no peer, while the universe is a tiny speck in the grandeur of Allah. Also believing in all His prophets from Adam, the first man to the final prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him, s.a.w.) The Qur’an which was revealed to Muhammad s.a.w. is 100 percent Allah’s words. Only one version, the Qur’an is being translated by many translators and memorized by millions. (Qur’an 23:1 and 24:31)
2. Sincerity: Doing good deeds to please only Allah and none else. Deeds done for other than Allah or along with Allah is not acceptable to Allah. Allah The Most Beautiful loves beauty. (Qur’an 30:38)
3. Worship Allah alone: None has the right to be worshipped but Allah, the One-And-Only. (Qur’an 22:77)
4. Guidance from Allah: From the unadulterated Al-Qur’an and authentic ways/sunnah of Muhammad s.a.w., the last prophet. We can never go astray when we follow the Qur’an and sunnah. (Qur’an 2:5 and 31:5)
5. Remember Allah always. Almighty Allah deserves to be remembered all the time. Only by remembering Allah, will our hearts experience true and lasting tranquility. (Qur’an 8:45 and 62:10)
6. Grateful to Allah: Be thankful and optimistic about everything Allah has prepared for us in this world by worshipping Allah zealously. A grateful person lives a meaningful life. (Qur’an 7:69)
7. Fear Allah (takwa): Venerate, love, have hope in while being anxious and concerned of Allah. The most honourable in the sight of Allah are those who fear Allah most. (Qur’an 3:130)
8. Perform regular worship of Allah (five times prayers) and duties like declaration of faith, fasting, tithe and hajj. (Qur’an Qur’an 22:77)
9. Listen and obey Allah’s law. Allah’s and His messenger’s words will lead to a perfect life.
10. Rationale: The Qur’an agrees very well with the sunnah of Muhammad s.a.w. matches well with the wise mind and fits the fitrah (innate instinct of humankind) – Qur’an 2:189 and 5: 100
11. Gives preference to Allah’s choices Allah Sees, Hears and Knows everything. (Qur’an 2: 189 and 5:100)
12. Scatter over the earth and seeks Allah’s bounty. Aren’t we Allah’s vicegerents on earth? (Qur’an 62:10)
13. Avoid evil deeds; like consuming intoxicants, gambling and ascribing partners to Allah. Satan promotes lawlessness among us but succumbs among us but succumbs to those who trust and fear Allah. (Qur’an 5:90)
14. Accumulate the rewards of the Hereafter: like the prophets, the truthful, the martyrs and the pious. They enjoy this life by doing good deeds and Allah’s paradise awaits them May all of us be among them. (Qur’an 7:8)
15. Jihad (strive); with speech, wealth and life to spread the truth and Islamic monotheism. (Qur’an 9:88)
16. Be generous for Allah’s sake, especially when in need of Allah’s Help.
17. Invite to righteousness, enjoin good and forbid evil. Good deeds invite Allah’s Blessings. (Qur’an 3:104)
18. Always be on Allah’s side. Unwavering dedication to Allah’s cause, wherever and whenever. (Quran 58:220
19. Patience and steadfastness: Firm in upholding the truth and Islamic monotheism till the end of our life. (Qur’an 3:200)
20. Repent from all sins and do righteous deeds: Only Allah is perfect and free from mistakes. (Qur’an 28:67)
21. Always be mindful of the enemy. For this reason we continuously seek and need Allah’s Help. (Qur’an 3:200)
22. Honour, assist and follow scholars (ulama) who truly practice Islam. (7:157)
23. Be charitable to oneself. A strong believer is dearer and more beloved to Almighty Allah. (Qur’an 64:16)
24. Avoid usury and illegal income. Usury and illegally gained income lead to hell. (Qur’an 3:130)
25. Seeking means and ways to approach Allah. May we meet Allah at the best moment! Ameen. (Qur’an 5:35)
26. Purifying our souls. Allah has given everyone a soul. A good soul will benefit oneself and others. (Qur’an 87:14 and 91:9)
27. Give kindred (especially parents), the poor and wayfarer their dues for Allah’s sake. (Qur’an 30:38)
28. Lower our gaze, protect our private parts and wear appropriate Islamic attire. Self respect is important in Islam. Insincerity and ignorance cause man to live in disunity, disarray and void of guidance. (Qur’an 24:31)
29. Love each other and have no jealousy, for Allah’s sake: Like the Ansar and Muhajirin. (Qur’an 59:9)
30. Choose friends who believe in the Last Day. Close friend influence our life. (Qur’an 58:22)
31. Say the truth from Allah and His Messenger even if it is unpopular. Truth will prevail. (Qur’an 5:100)
32. Ask the right people: Scholars, parents, experts, specialist, sincere friends and the like. (Qur’an 2: 189)