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What are we reading in Tashahhud?
We can divide the verses of Tashahhud into 6 parts, as shown below.
We can derive lessons from each part.
What is the summary of the first point, above?
“All Praise be to Allah”.
What is the summary of Points 2 & 3 above?
“Sending Salam (Peace) to Prophet (pbuh)”.
The Main DUAs within the Tashahhud starts here for us and for all the believers. There are two DUAs here:
What DUAs you can make, for example? (PS. I got the lists from my little students :-))
O’ Allah! Grant me a planet of Chocolate 🙂
Make me stronger (healthier)
Make me more knowledgeable
Make me wealthy
Grant me Jannah
Make me a great cook 🙂
Grant me safety, etc
However, all those DUAs are essentially boiled down to a single word – ‘PEACE’. Isn’t it?
For instance, if you have wealth but you don’t have the peace, what’s the point of having the wealth? Have you achieved anything?
All the DUAs you have thought of are supposed to give you internal peace, in order to get the best outcome.
A further illustration is as follows. Allah swt says:
“Whoever acts righteously, whether male or female, and believes, We will make them live a good life”. (16:97)
Here ‘Hayatun Tayyibah’ (“a good life”) in this verse does not refer to mundane, trivial actions, but instead refers to the spiritual life and the emotional well-being of an individual. Ali (R) has said that Hayatun Tayyibah is characterised by contentedness. Therefore, a Peaceful Life does not come from attaining material possessions or gathering wealth; it comes from having a heart that can be content with what one has, and it is this contentedness that Allah swt bestows upon his righteous servants. It is a secret of happiness, and one that is crucial for all of us to strive towards.
In the tashahhud, we are asking for ‘PEACE’!!
We are also asking Allah for peace for others (all believers).
What is the benefit in doing so?
If we really mean to send peace for others, the hatred and jealousy due to difference of opinions among the Muslims would go away immediately. Our speech and actions would improve and become more positive.
Is there any spiritual benefit in asking peace for others?
Prophet Muhammad (sm) said:
“O Allah, we are asking for the forgiveness for all Mu’meen men & women, all Muslim men & women”.
Here we are asking Allah to forgive ALL Muslims.
“Whoever seeks forgiveness for believing men and believing woman, Allah will write for him a good deed for each believing man and believing woman.” [Tabarani]
Hence, there is a reward in exchange for EVERY believer that we make dua for. When it is Ramadan, we get 70 good deeds for every believer we make dua for. So, a simple dua which takes a few seconds to supplicate will give us BILLIONS of good deeds!
Tashahhud ends with the declaration of La-Ilaha Illallah.. (shahadah).
What is the benefit of this if our last sentence before going back to Allah swt is the Shahadah itself?
It was narrated that Mu’aadh ibn Jabal (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: I heard the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) say:
“If a person’s last words are Laa ilaaha ill-Allaah, Paradise will be guaranteed for him.” Narrated by Ahmad, 21529; Abu Dawood, 3116; classed as saheeh by Albaani.
Another interpretation of looking at the Tashahhud in a different perspective is as shown below. If we look at the overall structure of tashahhud, we can derive the following sequences:
Table 1: 5 steps in Tashahhud
1. Praise Allah
2. Sending Salam (Peace) for the Prophet (sm)
3. OUR DUAs …… (In Tashahhud, we ask for the peace for ourselves and for all believers)
4. Declaring the Oneness of Allah (related to 1 – Praise to Allah)
5. Declaring Prophethoods (related to 2 – Sending Salam (Peace) for the Prophet (sm))
In a more succinct manner, we can derive the following 3 points:
Table 2: 3 steps directly identified in Tashahhud
1. Praising to Allah & sending peace to Prophet
1. Declaring Shahadah
Both structures (Table 1 & 2) are like a sandwiched-like DUA technique 😊.
Like a sandwich, where the top and bottom part are bread, in an efficient DUA, the beginning & end part must constitute praising Allah and sending peace upon Prophet (sm).
Even at the end of the DUA, we can make Shahadah.
And this is the main GEM!!
Imam al-Bayhaqi records in his famous compilation Su’ab al Imaan on the authority of Jabir (ra) the following:
“Place me at the beginning of your supplication as well as the end of your supplication.”
In both tables 1 & 2, Prophet (sm) is mentioned at the beginning & end portion of the DUA.
Therefore, Tashahhud indicates an idealized and efficient form of DUA that is recited in Salah.
May Allah enable you to make efficient DUAs.
May Allah fulfill all your needs and make you a better Muslim.