Islam emphasizes that we live a balanced life in this world

Balance in Life

Islam is a simple and straightforward religion, so it emphasizes all Muslims to live a simple and humble life as well. We are never asked to do something beyond our capacity, we are never asked to give up our genuine worldly desires, abilities, social lives or money, we are never asked to pray all day and night or fast the whole year…such things are prohibited. Moderation is the key to success. A true Muslim lives in this world harmonizing the spiritual and secular aspects of his life and keeping a balance between them well. Allah says:

وَكَذَٰلِكَ جَعَلْنَاكُمْ أُمَّةً وَسَطًا لِّتَكُونُوا شُهَدَاءَ عَلَى النَّاسِ وَيَكُونَ الرَّسُولُ عَلَيْكُمْ شَهِيدًا

Thus, We have made you a justly balanced community that you will be witnesses over the people and the Messenger will be a witness over you.” (Surah Al-Baqarah 2:143)

Islam emphasizes that we live a balanced life in this world, fulfilling our obligations and duties to Allah as well as our responsibilities towards society and even ourselves. Thus Islam obliges us to worship Allah only, to be good to the rest of the creation, never harm others, stay away from all types of prohibited matters and have honest character and personality. Allah says:

وَابْتَغِ فِيمَا آتَاكَ اللَّهُ الدَّارَ الْآخِرَةَ ۖ وَلَا تَنسَ نَصِيبَكَ مِنَ الدُّنْيَا

Seek the home of the Hereafter by that which Allah has given you, but do not forget your share of the world.” (Surah Al-Qasas 28:77)

None of these things is beyond human capabilities or unusual, there is nothing prohibited that is necessary for our lives, rather only that which is defeating to accomplished human life. Islam guides us to worship Allah only, pray five times a day, fast one month a year, give two and a half per cent of our excess wealth in charity, make Hajj once in a lifetime (if possible) and keep away from all forbidden acts. None of these is beyond human capability.

Are we able to devote ample energy to all areas? Here’s how to balance it all out:

  1. Make time for yourself every day, in a state, to relax
  2. Make that decision on a minute-to-minute schedule
  3. Your goals should cover mental development
  4. Your goals should cover spiritual alignment
  5. Get plenty of rest, exercise and eat properly
  6. Your goals should cover physical being
  7. Your goals should cover relationships
  8. Your goals should cover finances
  9. Take care of and nurture yourself
  10. Learn to roll with the punches
  11. Know what your priorities are
  12. Assess your life as it is now
  13. We are all instant forgetters
  14. Create an efficient mindset
  15. Be willing to take the risk
  16. Be prepared for the future
  17. Be organized and plan ahead
  18. Be able to adjust your game plan
  19. Set goals in every area of your life
  20. Maintain a positive mental attitude
  21. Allow yourself to unwind after a hectic day
  22. Assist yourself in ultimate goal is a balance
  23. Achieving balance allows us to reach our goals
  24. Make a conscious decision to become balanced
  25. Don’t feel that your decisions are made in concrete

A well-balanced life is essential for personal effectiveness, peace of mind and living well. The challenge is to balance what we must do with what we enjoy and choose to do. This is not always easy. If, however, we are unable to reduce stress and manage a well-balanced life there can be physical and/or emotional health consequences. Balance does not entail cramming in every activity possible. Examine your values and decide what’s important to you; then set your boundaries. Allah says:

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا كُونُوا قَوَّامِينَ لِلَّهِ شُهَدَاءَ بِالْقِسْطِ وَلَا يَجْرِمَنَّكُمْ شَنَآنُ قَوْمٍ عَلَىٰ أَلَّا تَعْدِلُوا اعْدِلُوا هُوَ أَقْرَبُ لِلتَّقْوَىٰ وَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ إِنَّ اللَّهَ خَبِيرٌ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ

“O you who believe! Be steadfast for Allah (as) witnesses in justice, and let not prevent you hatred (of) a people [upon] that not you do justice. Be just it (is) nearer to [the] piety. And consciously revere Allah; indeed, Allah (is) All-Aware of what you do.” (Surah Al-Ma’idah 5:8)

The truth is that life is difficult, and we face many challenges throughout our lives that Islam helps us through and gives us the means to success and inner strength to keep going when we think we can’t go on. The Muslim knows that Allah will never burden a believer with more than she can bear. That is not to say that we won’t face troubles that baffle us sometimes. Allah says:

وَإِذْ جَعَلْنَا الْبَيْتَ مَثَابَةً لِّلنَّاسِ وَأَمْنًا وَاتَّخِذُوا مِن مَّقَامِ إِبْرَاهِيمَ مُصَلًّى وَعَهِدْنَا إِلَىٰ إِبْرَاهِيمَ وَإِسْمَاعِيلَ أَن طَهِّرَا بَيْتِيَ لِلطَّائِفِينَ وَالْعَاكِفِينَ وَالرُّكَّعِ السُّجُودِ

“And when We made the House a place of return for mankind and (a place o) security and (said), “Take [from] (the) standing place (of) Ibrahim, (as) a place of prayer.” And We made a covenant with Ibrahim and Ismail [that], “[You both] purify My House for those who circumambulate and those who seclude themselves and those who bow down and those who prostrate.” (Surah Al-Baqarah 2:125)

Allah Almighty says in the Holy Quran:

وَأَنَّهُ هُوَ أَمَاتَ وَأَحْيَا

“And that He [He] causes death and gives life.” (An-Najm 53:44)

وَمَن نُّعَمِّرْهُ نُنَكِّسْهُ فِي الْخَلْقِ أَفَلَا يَعْقِلُونَ

“And (he) whom We grant him long life, We reverse him in the creation. Then will not use intellect?” (Ya-Sin 36:68)

لَعَمْرُكَ إِنَّهُمْ لَفِي سَكْرَتِهِمْ يَعْمَهُونَ

“By your life indeed, they were in their intoxication, wandering blindly.” (Al-Hijr 15:72)

وَقَالُوا إِنْ هِيَ إِلَّا حَيَاتُنَا الدُّنْيَا وَمَا نَحْنُ بِمَبْعُوثِينَ

“And they said, “Not it (is) except our life (of) the world and not we (will be) resurrected.” (Al-An`am 6:29)

إِنْ هِيَ إِلَّا حَيَاتُنَا الدُّنْيَا نَمُوتُ وَنَحْيَا وَمَا نَحْنُ بِمَبْعُوثِينَ

“Not it (is) but our life (of) the world, we die and we live, and not we (will be) resurrected.” (Al-Mu`minun 23:37)

الْمَالُ وَالْبَنُونَ زِينَةُ الْحَيَاةِ الدُّنْيَا وَالْبَاقِيَاتُ الصَّالِحَاتُ خَيْرٌ عِندَ رَبِّكَ ثَوَابًا وَخَيْرٌ أَمَلًا

“The wealth and children (are) adornment (of) the life (of) the world. But the enduring good deeds (are) better near your Lord (for) reward and better (for) hope.” (Al-Kahf 18:46)

وَمَا الْحَيَاةُ الدُّنْيَا إِلَّا لَعِبٌ وَلَهْوٌ وَلَلدَّارُ الْآخِرَةُ خَيْرٌ لِّلَّذِينَ يَتَّقُونَ أَفَلَا تَعْقِلُونَ

“And not (is) the life (of) the world except a play and amusement; but the home (of) the Hereafter (is) best for those who (are) God-conscious. Then, will you not reason?” (Al-An`am 6:32)

Islam never stresses hardships or giving up on social life; rather a balanced life is encouraged and taught. Commonly, we transgress in our worldly affairs. At times, we get so immersed in our social lives that we neglect our relationship with Allah. We need to keep a check on this. Islam encourages us to keep a balance and not lose ourselves in this temporary world. Allah says:

وَابْتَغِ فِيمَا آتَاكَ اللَّهُ الدَّارَ الْآخِرَةَ وَلَا تَنسَ نَصِيبَكَ مِنَ الدُّنْيَا وَأَحْسِن كَمَا أَحْسَنَ اللَّهُ إِلَيْكَ وَلَا تَبْغِ الْفَسَادَ فِي الْأَرْضِ إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَا يُحِبُّ الْمُفْسِدِينَ

“But seek, through what Allah has given you, the home (of) the Hereafter, and (do) not forget your share of the world. And do good as Allah has been good to you. And (do) not seek corruption in the earth. Indeed, Allah (does) not love the corrupters.” (Surah Al-Qasas, 28: 77)

It is obvious that the religious life needs to be given as important as the worldly life and the objective of a Muslim should be to strike a balance between the religious obligations and worldly duties to be a successful Muslim in this world and the world hereafter. Aim high in everything you do, but take care not to lose the balance. You have the challenge to balance your habits. And certainly, you can do it! May Allah bless you and strengthen you, for you are indeed special.