by Team AYEINA and Rayeesa
الدعاء هو العبادة
The Prophet (ﷺ) said, “Du’a (supplication) is worship.” [Abu Dawud]
Dua – a beautiful word for “supplication” in Arabic. Its root words are د ع و ( Dal-Ayn-Waw ) which means to seek, desire, ask, demand, call upon, invoke, ascribe, cry out, call out to, pray, supplicate, etc.
It is a powerful weapon of the believer. If his/her dua gets accepted, there’s khair in it. If it doesn’t get accepted, it could either be a source of salvation in the Hereafter or a way to ward off evil from you.
In short, a dua can result in the following:
1) Allah will answer immediately.
2) Allah will postpone it for a better time and we’ll be rewarded for our patience in shaa Allah.
3) It will be rejected because Allah knows what’s best for us and it can help ward off harm in Dunya or Aakhirah (here or hereafter).
The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said, “Whenever a Muslim supplicates Allah, He accepts his supplication or averts any similar kind of trouble from him until he prays for something sinful or something that may break the ties of kinship.” Upon this, someone of the Companions said: “Then we shall supplicate plenty.” The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said, “Allah is more plentiful (in responding).” [At- Tirmidhi].
So, what are the secrets behind a dua that gets accepted?
1) Supplicate for others.
Make dua for others what you want for yourself. As Muslims, we are supposed to feel the pain of other Muslims and pray for them. Life can throw us into the same situation where we might need duas from others.
“He who supplicates for his brother behind his back (in his absence), the Angel commissioned (for carrying supplication to his Lord) says: Amen, and it is for you also”.[Sahih Muslim]
You can ask people to make dua for you as well. This is a tacky situation sometimes as there’s a fine line between depending on Allah alone or thinking that someone’s intercession is divine. Please know that nobody can fulfill your wishes except Allah so asking others to make dua for you can simply be a way to connect. This does not mean that you go to a righteous scholar etc. with the intention that their dua will ALWAYS be heard. By the end of the day, if Allah doesn’t will, nothing can be done. He has complete authority. But this does not mean that we can’t ask people to pray for us. We may not even have to ask people for a dua if we help them out, solve their problems, and be of use to them. Duas may pour out directly from their hearts. You can book your trial class with Mishkah Academy for online Quran, Arabic, and Islamic Studies with a tutor for better knowledge in shaa Allah.
Right-click the below image and click “save as…” to download the FREE Dua List Printable (without the watermark). If you print it, we’d love to see how you utilize it in shaa Allah.
2) Make duas mentioned in Qur’an & Sunnah
Most of us think that Allah knows what we want so we don’t make duas at all, but what we forget is that we have nothing to lose here. We don’t go empty-handed when we make a dua. We get a reward or we get acceptance.
If you don’t know whether you’re asking for the right thing or no, if it has khair or no, then pray Istikhara. As a matter of fact, pray istikhara for every small matter – asking Allah to put khair in whatever you ask from Him.
Making duas from the Qur’an and sunnah is the best way to cover all matters of your life in a compact form of words. As mentioned in our Hajj/Umrah article, THIS BOOK is a good compilation of the Qur’anic and masnoon duas.
Refer to the following links we’ve already done on the topic of dua:
3) Ask during the accepted times
Allah did not place a limit on the number or type of duas you can make. Show Allah your dependence on Him through constant supplications. Following is the list of best places and times to make duas (all references linked within):
7. In sickness/ pain/ oppression (during calamity)
4) Just Tahajjud it!
If you really want something and you haven’t prayed tahajjud, then do you really want it that much?
Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said, “Our Lord, the Blessed, the Superior, comes every night down on the nearest Heaven to us when the last third of the night remains, saying: “Is there anyone to invoke Me, so that I may respond to invocation? Is there anyone to ask Me, so that I may grant him his request? Is there anyone seeking My forgiveness, so that I may forgive him?” [Bukhari]
5) Istighfar (repentance)
“And said, ‘Ask forgiveness of your Lord. Indeed, He is ever a Perpetual Forgiver. He will send the sky upon you in showers. And give you increase in wealth and children and provide for you gardens and provide for you rivers.” [Quran; 71:10-12]
6) Give up a sin and do good instead
Begin supplication with the praise of Allah. Send peace and blessings upon Rasool Allah ﷺ.
Ibrahim bin Muhammad bin Sa`d narrated from his father, from Sa`d that the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: “The supplication of Dhun-Nun (Prophet Yunus) when he supplicated, while in the belly of the whale was: ‘There is none worthy of worship except You, Glory to You, Indeed, I have been of the transgressors. (Lā ilāha illā anta subḥānaka innī kuntu minaẓ-ẓālimīn)’ So indeed, no Muslim man supplicates with it for anything, ever, except Allah responds to him.” [Tirmidhi]
While reciting this ayah, think of at least one sin that you committed and are willing to give up for the sake of Allah.
For some people, the wordings of dua can make a huge difference. So if you feel awful and unproductive by dragging yourself through the guilt trip – by saying something like – ya Allah I’m sorry I didn’t pray. Instead, try making dua with the formation of words like – ya Allah I want to pray and I need Your help.
Regret sits on a fine line. As long as it encourages you to make a change, it’s good for you but if you think that shaitan will drag you into hopelessness due to the overwhelming amount of guilt, then try switching up the words you utter to yourself. And stick to what works for you. By the end of the day, the result we want to achieve is BETTERMENT.
7) Send Salawaat (blessings) upon the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ (also known as Durood)
Ubayy bin Ka’b (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: …I said: “O Messenger of Allah (ﷺ), I frequently invoke Allah to elevate your rank. How much of my supplications should I devote to you?” He said, “You may devote as much as you wish.” When I suggested a quarter, he said, “Do whatever you wish, but it will be better for you if you increase it.” I suggested half, and he said, “Do whatever you wish, but it will be better for you if you increase.” I suggested two- thirds, and he said, “Do whatever you wish but it will be better for you if you increase it.” I said, “Shall I devote all my supplications invoking Allah to elevate your rank?” He said, “Then you will be freed from your worries and your sins will be forgiven.” [Riyad as-Salihin]
8) Show gratitude
Be thankful for what you already have, no matter how meager it is, in order to receive more.
Allah says: “…If you give thanks, I will give you more….” [Qur’an 14:7]
If you want more wealth, give thanks for every dollar. If you need help in staying more grateful and positive (especially for the tiny things in your life that you usually take for granted), a gratitude journal catered for Muslims can be a great way to start this journey in shaa Allah.
When your dua is answered, say Alhamdulillah from the heart, make sujood, increase in your ibadah and decrease your disobedience. Show gratefulness through your actions and words both.
9) Try to gain your parents’ duas genuinely
Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “There are 3 supplications which are answered: the supplication of the person who is wronged, the supplication of the TRAVELER, and the supplication of a parent for his child. [Adab al-Mufrad]
10) Be proactive and remember Allah in times of ease as well
Along with prayers, make some effort as well. Do something about it. Do everything you can to make it possible. Show Allah you are working really hard. Consistent efforts combined with dua really does wonders.
The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: “Whoever wishes that Allah would respond to him during hardship and grief, then let him supplicate plentifully when at ease.” [Tirmidhi]
Make a vision board (as suggested in Visionaire Online) and visualize the steps on how you hope your dua to be accepted. You could assign colors to your specific duas – something that you want to make over and over, so whenever you see those colors, it may remind you to make that dua.
11) Fast for the sake of Allah
Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: “When the fasting person breaks his fast, his supplication is not turned back.” [Ibn Majah]
Do you have a favourite name of Allah from the 99 names?
Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) heard a man saying: O Allah, I ask Thee, I bear witness that there is no god but Thou, the One, He to Whom men repair, Who has not begotten, and has not been begotten, and to Whom no one is equal, and he said: You have supplicated Allah using His Greatest Name, when asked with this name He gives, and when supplicated by this name he answers. [Abu Dawud]
اللَّهُمَّ إِنِّي أَسْأَلُكَ أَنِّي أَشْهَدُ أَنَّكَ أَنْتَ اللَّهُ لاَ إِلَهَ إِلاَّ أَنْتَ الأَحَدُ الصَّمَدُ الَّذِي لَمْ يَلِدْ وَلَمْ يُولَدْ وَلَمْ يَكُنْ لَهُ كُفُوًا أَحَدٌ
“Al-Ahad” and “As-Samad” are one of the names of Allah. If you feel lost as to how to make a dua with Allah’s name or attribute in your daily life, then go through THIS ARTICLE WITH AN AUTHENTIC LIST OF 99 NAMES OF ALLAH and try this as an example:
I ask You for Your love and the love of those who love You, and for the action that will cause me to attain Your love so make Your love more beloved to me than myself and my beloved.
Rinse my soul of sins that hide beneath the skin – the sins that no one knows of, except You…Separate the layers around my bones and wash my heart from the evil that makes it dark.
Grant me mercy that I starve my soul of. You have more mercy in You than the sin in me so free my soul of self-limiting beliefs so I can feel as light as a feather.
Protect me from the perpetual civil war within me in which many souls are fighting to survive – torn between dunya and aakhirah, destroying each other in the process…
Colour me a purposeful self so I can comprehend the reason why am I here in this dunya and utilise this limited time in my hands for what yields forever…
Free me from the endless longing of human warmth, acceptance, and approval – so I can depend on no one but You, so I don’t chase after dunya and my heart long for you – even when I have everything from the dunya in my mortal hands.
Help me out of every constriction and reduction, obstruction and destruction, addiction and affliction. And help me hang onto the hope that the help is near when I rush through the process.
You’re Beautiful and You love beauty so beautify my soul that beautifies the vessel it’s kept in. Help me see the beauty in things when everything seems ugly.
You’re Gentle and Kind and you have put beauty in generosity, so when I lose my patience and I’m pushed to the edge of my kindness, pull me back and pour buckets of softness in my heart so it can pump with ease and let others breathe the breeze…
You’re closer to me than my jugular vein, but if I pull back and my heart disconnects, pump the blood through my veins so I can feel the pain – the pain of being far away from You and the pain of being so numb. The pain of apathy and the pain of a cold heart.
YA MUJEEB !
You respond whenever a servant calls upon You so please accept…accept…accept!
13) Earn and consume Halal only
Ibn al-Qayyim said: Thus eating haram things saps the strength of the dua and weakens it.
The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said, “O people! Allah is Pure and, therefore, accepts only that which is pure. Allah has commanded the believers as He has commanded His Messengers by saying: ‘O Messengers! Eat of the good things, and do good deeds.’ (23:51) And He said: ‘O you who believe (in the Oneness of Allah – Islamic Monotheism)! Eat of the lawful things that We have provided you…”‘ (2:172). Then he (ﷺ) made a mention of the person who travels for a long period of time, his hair are dishevelled and covered with dust. He lifts his hand towards the sky and thus makes the supplication: ‘My Rubb! My Rubb!’ But his food is unlawful, his drink is unlawful, his clothes are unlawful and his nourishment is unlawful, how can, then his supplication be accepted?” [Muslim]
14) Fulfill your obligations and try to perform as many extra good deeds as you can
Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said, “Allah said, ‘I will declare war against him who shows hostility to a pious worshipper of Mine. And the most beloved things with which My slave comes nearer to Me, is what I have enjoined upon him; and My slave keeps on coming closer to Me through performing Nawafil (praying or doing extra deeds besides what is obligatory) till I love him, so I become his sense of hearing with which he hears, and his sense of sight with which he sees, and his hand with which he grips, and his leg with which he walks; and if he asks Me, I will give him, and if he asks My protection (Refuge), I will protect him; (i.e. give him My Refuge) and I do not hesitate to do anything as I hesitate to take the soul of the believer, for he hates death, and I hate to disappoint him.” [Sahih Bukhari]
15) Do not be hasty
Prophet (ﷺ) said: “One of you will be responded to, so long as he is not hasty, saying: ‘I supplicated, and I was not responded to.’” [TIRMIDHI]
Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: “It is necessary that you do not become hasty.” It was said: “What does being hasty mean, O Messenger of Allah?” He said: “When one says: ‘I supplicated to Allah but Allah did not answer me.'” [Ibn Majah]
16) Hope for positive results and do not give up
Ask and you shall receive. Have firm faith that your dua will be answered and your wish will definitely be granted. You have asked the King – for Whom, nothing is impossible. No matter, how big your need is, or how difficult you think your problem is, or how messy your situation is, it is a matter of Kun fayakun for Him.
Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ) said: “A supplication should be made in full confidence and one should persistently express his desire (before Allah) in his supplication, for no bounty is too great for Allah to bestow (upon his slaves).” [Muslim]
If the dua leaves your lips without the feeling of excitement and hope of acceptance, then try tweaking your dua a little. Put anticipation in your dua. For eg: Instead of saying – “O Allah! Grant me, children”. Maybe you can ask “O Allah! Let me be a part of my Child’s wedding”. This may keep you more hopeful and excited every time you make this dua.
Don’t lower your standards, raise your DUA!
What is your experience with duas? What tips have worked for you? Do let us know in the comments below.
NEXT: All about Istikhara
Co-Author’s Bio: Rayeesa Tabassum is a Hyderabadi Muslimah residing in Jeddah, KSA. She loves reading, writing, public speaking, and homemaking. Her aim is to become an accomplished Muslim writer so that her writings can be a sadqah-e-jariyah for her. She blogs at https://reshuwrites.wordpress.com/