Inner JourneySelf Development



If you really want to move on, however, the best way is to forgive the one who wronged you.

Do you think that Prophet Muhammad SAW was exempted from emotional pain? He was cast out of his home; ridiculed, insulted and abused by his community, and there were even several attempts on his life, both by assassination and in the battlefield. He was invited to deliver the Message in Taif but was driven out with stones and rocks by its inhabitants. What would we have done in his shoes? Would we be lamenting about it for years to come? Would we have plotted vengeance and the retaliated once we had the means to do so? Or would we have done what he did, which was to complain to Allah of his own shortcomings and to pray for the enlightenment and forgiveness of those who humiliated and attacked him?

When he was forced to migrate to Madina from his beloved birthplace and hometown, did our Prophet SAW spend days and nights weeping about all the injustice done to him? No, he stayed focused on the much bigger goal – his mission in life. When Mecca was ultimately conquered, did he make an example of his oppressors? No, he forgave, granted them amnesty, and moved on. He did not dwell on the past.

If you think that the standards set by the Prophet SAW are unrealistic, then examine the accomplishments of the Companions. In the early days of Islam, they suffered the worst possible persecution and betrayals by their own flesh and blood. It was brother against brother, father against son. They were tortured, assaulted, boycotted, starved and imprisoned, they had to see their loved ones perish in the brutal hands of the disbelievers. Yet when their persecutors repented and turned to Islam, they forgave. The slate was wiped clean. They moved on to achieve their goals in life, their unity in the Islamic brotherhood taking precedence above all else.

The difference between us and them is that their love and hate were only for the cause of Allah. They did not get waylaid by their own petty emotions and desires. They did not obsess over failed relationships, insignificant issues or emotional grievances. They had a goal in life, and did not allow any other agenda to distract them from that goal.

Would Islam have spread if the Companions had adopted our attitude of holding on to the past, harbouring grudges and being occupied with problems which are, in comparison to what they faced, wholly insignificant? When push comes to shove, how many of us treat our friends and families worse than we would a stranger on the street, because of some small issue that was blown out of proportion?

Have we, as Muslims, lost so much of our ultimate goal in life that we have let our emotional disasters dominate our thoughts and hearts? Have we let our own personal trivialities made us forget our ultimate purpose in life? If so, isn’t it time to move on?


What is forgiveness? This action has a deep significance. Forgiveness brings closure to the incident.

This is monumentally difficult and requires supreme emotional discipline. So why should we forgive, and let the other person get away scot free?

On an emotional level, when you forgive, it is a testament to the strength of your character. You have chosen to rise above the pain and instead of playing the victim. You have placed a clear barrier beyond which the past is no longer capable of hurting you. In this, you have fully assigned the matter to Allah to deal with the wrongdoer, but you yourself bear no grudge against them, and choose instead to take the more noble path.

You cannot claim that you have forgiven someone, and yet when the person is in your company, you glare at them or give them the silent treatment. Worse, when you still mention a past wrong. That means that you are still festering negativity against the wrongdoer, and still bringing the incident back to life, back to the forefront of your thoughts. True forgiveness requires developing emotional amnesia.

The effects of this are immense and liberating. For one thing, your mind will stop being cluttered with the past. With forgiveness, you wash away the hurt and close the chapter once and for all. The emotional cleansing complete, the true healing will begin, and your heart will be light and free. When you forgive, you display mercy, a characteristic beloved to Allah.

You forgive for your own salvation, for one of the ways of ensuring that Allah treats you with mercy is if you treat your fellow man with mercy. You unchain yourself from the weight of emotional baggage. When you forgive, you will stop thinking of the unpleasant incidents, and this in turns releases and enables you to occupy your heart, mind and time with things that are more refreshing and significant, such as focusing on the present and strengthening your ties with Allah.

When you forgive, that is when you stop oppressing yourself for the wrongs that others have done to you. Ultimately, the benefits of such forgiveness to yourself outweigh that of the person you forgave.

Forgiveness takes time. It takes effort. And in many cases, it takes several tries before one can sincerely admit to himself that all is forgiven. But it is worth it, for with forgiveness, you can then bring the matter to finality and write a new chapter for yourself.


There is also a higher level of forgiveness, which is erasing the wrong. There are narrated reports a man being granted Paradise, not because of any extraordinary amount of worship on his part, but because he slept with a clean heart (i.e. not harbouring any ill feelings to anyone) every night. There is also another report of a group of people entering jannah directly without reckoning – these are the people who not only forgave, but erased all traces of the wrongdoing from their hearts and thoughts  – as if the wrong never occurred in the first place. Erasing is evidenced when the person prays for Allah to forgive the sins of the wrongdoer and to wipe his record clean.

Of course this is not an easy act. Forgiving is a difficult task, and transcending this even more so. In Islam, the truly valuable things come with high price tags. It involves sacrifice – in this case, of our pride and need for vindication.

Do we think that Allah does not know the extent of our pain, the chain of injustice that led up to it? Of course He knows, for He knows the innermost contents of our hearts. He knows all the private and intimate details of our individual distress. Allah knows the measure of our suffering, and of our own inner conflict when we try to forgive and forget. It goes against all our natural instincts. That is why the corresponding reward is exceptionally high –  jannah without accountability.

Whether or not Allah accepts your supplication is a different matter. What is relevant is that you have done your part between you, the wrongdoer, and Allah. It is often said that one of the ways to taste the sweetness of iman is to pray for the forgiveness of someone who has oppressed you, and anyone who has undergone this will agree that this is one of the most beautiful tranquil feelings ever known.

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  1. beautiful article..

    beautiful article..
    We should always be thankful to Allah for giving us so many things that we never even asked for instead of looking at the things we couldn’t have..

  2. Excellent…!

    This is a well written article. One must read and understand this, Quran – the ultimate solution to problems in mankind.

  3. this is a very interesting

    this is a very interesting article and as a mature woman of a lot of lifes experience and a grandmother …i advice the same although not inthe same depth to a lot couples who are struggeling intheir relationships…..mostly we find that the women have had to make extreme cahnges in their life styles, their way of life and end up getting bullied by in-laws and husbands extended family.And yet the mannever seem to think that he has to make allowances for his wife , who has to adjust to living in strange household and with new people, sh ehas left her loving parents and family and moved into hostile territory.
    i wish more of our asians would accept that we are all muslims but come from different cultures and different parts of the world….some indiawala are still living the village mentality life, that they left in 1950s india…Islam is a pure and peaceful relegion.
    Knowledge and Ethics are needed

  4. Just what I needed to read to

    Just what I needed to read to understand what I have put myself through and how I can remedy and fix it rationally in good time.

    JZK..many thanks for the article.

  5. my fiances mothers death

    Hi. I love my fiance very much so does he. There are many shortcomings in our relationship too but we love unconditionally despite of all this ma sha Allah. He lost his mother several yrs back n cant get over it cz ge was extremely very close to her. I feel im perfect when it comes to handling him alhamdolillah but just that dnt know how to console him when he remembers his mother. Any suggestion/advice would be appreciated.

  6. Insightfull

    This article very true and in sight full,i am recently feeling some distress and cannot let go ,but reading this article made me realize that i am helping nobody,and destroying my self internally.

  7. Asm, insha Allah we will

    Asm, insha Allah we will publish an article on how to cope with loss soon. Please stay tuned, or alternatively, drop us an email at so that we can let you know when it’s online. You can also drop us an email at the same address and we will try to help you insha Allah.

  8. Subhanallah !!!!!! This

    Subhanallah !!!!!! This article is related to my life . I am trapped in materialistic world which ended in emotional ,psychological and mental torture . I learned to say Alhamdulillah S bhanallah recite quran and pray with the help of islamic postings on facebook . My wife is lost in western world she became workoholic dollar addict for which I partly blame myself i dont want my daughter to end up on streets Please pray for my family . Jazakallah

  9. Masha allah…such a soothing

    Masha allah…such a soothing and enlightening read…the writer simply projects all the possible situations the heart deals with at such times..may Allah bless you..ameen

  10. Alhamdullilah ,

    Alhamdullilah ,

    an eye opener , nice article ,

    yes its true that it is very difficult to forgive people who have hurt u to a v large extent but it is also true that when u move on in life and Allah gives U much better things then there comes a stage where those hurted emotions doesnt matter anymore to U …
    I just want to say dat some things obviously take time…. so as forgiveness .

  11. moving on

    After reading this great articles, I realised after 14 years had passed, I haven’t closed my chapter..sad but that is the truth…

  12. Thank you

    Thanks for the great article. I think i just needed this. True to what this article said,sometimes we ourselves go wrong and Allah has his own ways of showing that to us.

  13. Every pain has its end

    Assalam o alaykum
    Jazak ALLAH Khair for this article. I personally find it a good one in terms of relying Allah Alone and leaving the rest of the world aside. being a victim of domestic violence is really a hard reality not only in terms of suffering but also in terms of realizing that you are so vulnerable. The hardest moment comes when the circumstances are fabricated in a way to make you cry and shout but if you hold on your cries, your are tagged as being defensive as tortured for why you stay silent. what an irony.

    some people are really heartless, no matter what ever you sacrifice or forgo for them, they are never satiated. to them your silence is irritating, your cry is annoying and your speech is intolerable — where the woman should go they when each and every of her action is being labeled as pretension – Only ALLAH ALMIGHTY at that time is there to heal you and comfort you. So stay positive, focused and determined and hopefully you will end up as a person with good grades to enter Jannah..In Shaa ALLAH

  14. A very thought provoking

    A very thought provoking article. Something many of us know but must be reminded of nevertheless. Logically written.

  15. so much hurt

    thank you for the article.. thank you so much, i feel like this is really for me,.. thank you, Jazaakallah…

  16. Alhamdulillah.This is a well
    Submitted by Mutawakil Saliu (not verified) on Wed, 11/13/2013 – 06:14.

    Alhamdulillah.This is a well nourished spiritual diet.

  17. Moving on

    Wsm. We are all human beings, no one is perfect, and we all make mistakes. The key is to learn from those mistakes and to pick yourself up after.

    If you have reacted in anger after the incident, there are ways to make it right. Make taubah to Allah for your bad reaction, and also, try to mend the bridges with the person you have done the misdeed to. Make amends, apologise, seek his forgiveness. If this is not possible, then at the very least make dua for him and for his goodness.

    May Allah be with you and make it easy for you, ameen.

  18. Unable to forget?

    Asm, the human heart is very fragile and can easily be shattered. However, one of the best ways to get it together is to focus on your own happiness, not on the life of the person who ruined your life. Let Allah deal with him, and Allah is just. However, deal with yourself and focus on your own happiness and well being. Forgiveness takes time, but don’t hold back your own shot at having a happy life – instead emerge victorious despite all the hurt you’ve been through. May Allah be with you, ameen.

  19. Time to move on

    Asm. Bad things happen, that is a fact of life. You have been treated unjustly and Allah will punish those who have been unjust to you and who have placed you in this position. However, it will not help your own healing if you alre constantly reliving the bad memories. I’m not saying that you should pretend they never happened, but rather, look forward. Forget the others who have wronged you, for Allah will deal with them, but rather, focus on your own healing, repairing your emotional, physical and psychological scars. Look forward, sister, not backward. Live day by day, and don’t let a bad memory ruin your day, instead, strengthen yourself, strengthen your iman, and slowly replace all the bad memories with good ones insha Allah. May Allah make it easy for you to get over all these terrible things which have occurred in your past, ameen.

  20. Nonsense

    Why does do this to ourselves? Nobody allows a trigger to take over and let things fall apart. It’s not a controlled behaviour, it’s a reaction. You’re making people feel bad about feelings that we mostly can’t control.
    Have some shame.

  21. Move on

    Asm. There are those who want to grief and act as victim forever, and there are others that have moved on.
    Look at the life of Rasulullah SAW and the Companions. Can anyone honestly say that they have been through worse torture, humiliation, oppression, and from those closest to them? Yet they did not spend their lives stewing in hatred and pain. They forgave those that hurt them, tried to kill them, and even the ones who killed their loved ones. The difference is that they had their eyes on akhirah while we want to keep on our vindictive hold on the past. Therefore we think that what WE have been through is worse than anyone else, our sadness is greater, our hurt is greater, and no one feels as much pain as we do. Somehow many people think that carrying on with grief is an entitlement.
    A reaction cannot be helped, but it can be controlled. People shed tears of sadness, even our Prophet SAW. Yet, sunnah forbids us from going overboard in our grief. Sunnah tells us to be patient at the first hit. And numerous ahadith ask us to move on. The one who has done you wrong has probably moved on, meaning that if you are still hurt over a past incident, you are causing the emotional scars to yourself. If a wrong has been done to you, will carrying that hurt forever help you? Will weeping about it 5 years later get you anywhere? If you do not believe in the advice of Rasulullah SAW, then check out what the latest psychologists say about forgiveness and letting go.

  22. A must read for every believer!

    This is a well-compiled article and if applied in letter and spirit will have an overall affect on anyone’s personality.

  23. Dawatul Husna
    Submitted by Ahsan (not verified) on Tue, 11/12/2013 – 11:30.

    Jazakallah brother, I found this article in perfect time. I really am distress currently. Now I should return to Allah.

    But brother, what if I already did some misdeed angrily after the incident? How to come over that second mistake?

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