Distressed over his failure to study, and become an Imaam
Fatwa No: 89477


I have a problem that has been very stressful lately. I am a young man in my early 20's. I try my best to practice Islam. I have memorized more than 25 Juz' of the Qur'an. About 2 years ago my local Imaam here in the UK, sent me to study Islam overseas in a Arab country. He encouraged me and promises me a job as an Imaam when I come back. To be an Imaam is my dream, not for the name or show off, but to teach people the way of Allaah and guide them to the straight path. I went to this country and I didn't like it, the schools were mixed and Islam there is very weak. I decided to come back to the UK. When I came back everyone in the community was asking me what happened and I had to tell me story to a hundred people. I realized that many people were very happy things didn't work out for me, even before I went I realized they didn't wish the best. Others like the Imaam and a couple of other brothers were disappointed it didn't work out. Now I am studying in a local university, I am studying something I have no interest in. I am not interested in anything other than Islamic studies. I want to study Islam so bad, but I can't make the sacrifice. I feel it is too hard to leave my family and environment I grew up in to go and study. I learn a lot in my local area, we have many classes and lectures and I read many books, but it is not the same as studying Islam full time. I feel like a hypocrite because I couldn't sacrifice for the religion. There is also a younger brother in my community who is in his early high school years who is planning to go study in a couple years. For some reason I don't want things to work out for him, I know this is wrong. Now I am acting like the people who didn't want it to work out for me. What should I do? I am always so stressed, I can't focus on my prayer, or Qur'an. I don't know what to do. Before I left I prayed Istikhaara prayer at least one hundred times. I don't know if this is Allaah's decree or was it because my lack of sacrifice? I am very stressed, I lost my dream of studying Islam because I didn't want to sacrifice. I don't have it in me to go and live in another country. Please give me advice on what I should do.


All perfect praise be to Allaah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allaah, and that Muhammad is His slave and Messenger. We ask Allaah to exalt his mention as well as that of his family and all his companions.


First you should take it easy and refrain from thinking about something that had already happened because pondering about it may cause unpleasant consequences. You have to continue your life as normal and look forward to the future. Besides, you may continue attending religious lectures or courses that might be held in Islamic centres. You have to endeavour to acquire knowledge and devote this act sincerely to Allaah, and you have to be keen in teaching knowledge to others and calling them to Allaah with wisdom and good admonishing, while seeking the help of your Muslim brothers in doing so.

You have to know that nothing happens except by Allaah's decree. Allaah says (which means): {Indeed, We have created all things with predestination.}[54:49]. Leaving your studies is among what has been predestined; but this does not mean that you are not the cause of leaving the studies since you were not patient about them.

However, you are wrong in trying to discourage the other young person who was determined to travel for the sake of seeking religious knowledge. On the contrary, you should help him and encourage him to travel since these studies are in accordance to a correct methodology and belief. The fact that there are males and females in the course should not be a hindrance from attending it as long as the Muslim is in need of such studies, is safe from being tempted in his religion and cannot find another alternative where there is no mixing. In such a case a Muslim should fear Allaah as much as he can. 

Allaah knows best.

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