Islam remember that life is short

How to Overcome Depression in Islam

Everyone including Muslims is susceptible to loneliness, sadness, hopelessness, despair,  depression but even those can overcome with Islam which is not just a religion but also a complete way of life. Depression is a situation where the heart feels sad, worthless, desperate and often blames himself. The main cause of depression is usually caused by stress. Stress can arise because there is a problem with family, friends and even romance. Allah says:

وَمَنْ أَعْرَضَ عَن ذِكْرِي فَإِنَّ لَهُ مَعِيشَةً ضَنكًا وَنَحْشُرُهُ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ أَعْمَىٰ

“And whoever turns away from My remembrance, then indeed, for him (is) a life straitened and We will gather him (on the) Day (of) the Resurrection blind.” (Surah Ta-Ha 20:124)

Ask yourself the following questions if you are worried about the state of the world: are you part of the peace movement? Is your Masjid part of the peace movement? Are you part of an interfaith group with an agenda of peace and justice? Are you working with a group fighting discrimination? If your answer is no, it is time that you sat down to plan your share of time and money in finding solutions to the problems you face. Allah says:

وَتَوَلَّىٰ عَنْهُمْ وَقَالَ يَا أَسَفَىٰ عَلَىٰ يُوسُفَ وَابْيَضَّتْ عَيْنَاهُ مِنَ الْحُزْنِ فَهُوَ كَظِيمٌ

“And he turned away from them and said, “Alas, my grief over Yusuf!” And became white his eyes from the grief, and he (was) a suppressor.” (Surah Yusuf 12:84).

Stress is life. Stress is anything that causes mental, physical, or spiritual tension. Turn each worry into a Du`a and each Du`a into an action plan. That will show your commitment to your request and will focus your energy in the right direction. Use the five daily prayers as a means to become more Hereafter-oriented and less attached to this temporary world. Start distancing yourself as soon as you hear Adhan, the call to prayer. Allah says:

وَنُرِيدُ أَن نَّمُنَّ عَلَى الَّذِينَ اسْتُضْعِفُوا فِي الْأَرْضِ وَنَجْعَلَهُمْ أَئِمَّةً وَنَجْعَلَهُمُ الْوَارِثِينَ

“And We wanted to bestow a favour upon those who were oppressed in the land and make them leaders and make them the inheritors” (Surah Al-Qasas 28:5)

While we need to carry out our duty to the best of our abilities, always remember that you don’t control the outcome of events. Even the Prophets did not control the outcome of their efforts. Some were successful, others were not. Once you have done your duty, leave the results to Allah. Regardless of the results of your efforts, you will be rewarded for the part you have played. Allah says:

وَكَأَيِّن مِّن دَابَّةٍ لَّا تَحْمِلُ رِزْقَهَا اللَّهُ يَرْزُقُهَا وَإِيَّاكُمْ وَهُوَ السَّمِيعُ الْعَلِيمُ

“How many are the creatures that carry not their sustenance? It is Allah Who feeds them and you, for He hears and knows all things.” (Surah Al-‘Ankabut 29:60)

We must return to Quran, the greatest remembrance, that our hearts will find rest and assurance. However, never underestimate your abilities. Understand the concept of Barakah (blessings from Allah) and remember that Allah can and Insha Allah will expand them if you are sincerely exerting your energies for the right path.

Here is how to overcome depression in the Islamic way:

  1. Islam have positive affirmations on our subconscious minds
  2. Islam never loses hope despite all the pain and grief
  3. Islam equip us with the tools to combat depression
  4. Islam helps someone who asks for your help
  5. Islam avoid the company of negative people
  6. Islam pray for others to heal yourself
  7. Islam make the Quran your partner
  8. Islam remember that life is short
  9. Islam relying on Allah: Tawakkul
  10. Islam connect with other human beings
  11. Islam strength of a believer in bad days
  12. Islam leave the world behind you five times a day
  13. Islam starts affecting our health and daily activities
  14. Islam remember that human responsibility is limited
  15. Islam tells us that a giving hand is better than a taking one

It is important to remind ourselves that we don’t control all the variables in the world. God does. He is the Wise, the All-Knowing. Sometimes our limited human faculties are not able to comprehend His wisdom behind what happens to us and others, but knowing that He is in control and that as human beings we submit to His Will, enriches our humanity and enhances our obedience (Uboodiah in Arabic) towards him. Allah says:

ادْعُوا رَبَّكُمْ تَضَرُّعًا وَخُفْيَةً إِنَّهُ لَا يُحِبُّ الْمُعْتَدِينَ

“Call upon your Lord humbly and privately. Indeed, He (does) not love the transgressors.” (Surah Al-A’raf 7:55)

Familiarize yourself with God’s 99 Names, which are also known as His Attributes. It is a powerful way of knowing Him. If you fear for your physical safety and security, remember that only Allah gives life and takes it back and, that He has appointed the time for it. No one can harm you except if Allah will. It’s easy to get caught up in our stress and anxiety.

Allah Almighty said in the Quran:

  • “Seek help through Sabr and Salat.” (Quran 2:45)
  • “If you are grateful, I will give you more.” (Quran 14:7)
  • Call on Me; I will answer your (prayer)…” (Quran 40:60)
  • “When you have taken a decision, put your trust in Allah.” (Surah 3: Ayah 159)
  • “Remember Me, and I shall remember you; be grateful to Me, and deny Me not.” (Quran 2:152)
  • “… without a doubt in the remembrance (Zikr) of Allah do hearts find tranquillity.” (Quran 13:28)
  • ” Indeed, those who disdain My worship will enter Hell (rendered) contemptible.” (Verse 40: 60)
  • “O humanity! There has come to you a direction from your Lord and a cure for all [the ills] in men’s hearts – and for those who believe, a Guidance and a Mercy.” (Quran 10:57)
  • “How many are the creatures that carry not their sustenance? It is Allah Who feeds them and you, for He hears and knows all things.” (Quran 29:60)
  • “Wherever you are, death will find you out, even if you are in towers built up strong and high!” (Quran 4:78)
  • “Read the story of the encounter of Moses with the mysteries behind God’s decision.” (Quran: 18:60-82)
  • “Verily Allah does not change men’s condition unless they change their inner selves.” (Surah 13: Ayah 11)

Depression and anxiety are getting common among individuals around the world as they are facing the race towards education and increased facilities in life. However, if we remember that our life is short and temporary and that everlasting life is in the Hereafter, this will put our worries in perspective. Tolerance is the one that requires performing our duty in times of sadness and depression.  Allah says:

وَاصْبِرْ وَمَا صَبْرُكَ إِلَّا بِاللَّهِ وَلَا تَحْزَنْ عَلَيْهِمْ وَلَا تَكُ فِي ضَيْقٍ مِّمَّا يَمْكُرُونَ

“And be patient and not (is) your patience but from Allah. And (do) not grieve over them and (do) not be in distress for what they plot.” (Surah An-Nahl 16:127)

Islam provides a solution towards depression, although prayers are important and when we feel depressed we should need to strengthen our belief in Allah. Before we do something we should arrange our intentions first. Be sincere in your intentions, so that whatever results will be obtained later will not make us depressed. Do this because of Allah Almighty, and only from Allah Almighty, we can get what we want. Below here, Allah says in the Quran. Allah says:

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا كُلُوا مِن طَيِّبَاتِ مَا رَزَقْنَاكُمْ وَاشْكُرُوا لِلَّهِ إِن كُنتُمْ إِيَّاهُ تَعْبُدُونَ

“O you who believe, eat from the wholesome things which We have provided for you and be grateful to Allah if it is Him that you worship.” (Surat al-Baqarah 2:172)

Islam is a complete religion and provides the solution towards every single problem and for those who are facing depression and anxiety, there is hope in Islam to overcome debilitating symptoms. Overcoming depression and anxiety, when they have a stranglehold over our lives, is a very difficult task. It will take patience, sustained effort, and perseverance to implement a long-term plan for well-being, yet there is hope for healing and a clear path forward in Islam.