"Taqwa on the Tube"

Taqwa on the Tube Part 1 Patience

“TAQWA on the TUBE”

Part 1: Sabr (Patience)

Sabr Courtesy of Corinne Martin

One attribute required for internalisation when on the tube is “patience” (sabr). Patience is to hold firm and be strong in the face of hardship and difficulties and to remain in obedience to the Islamic injunctions (ahkam shar`iyya) – whatever kind or intensity the difficulty may be.[1]

Patience results from taqwa of Allah as mentioned in the Qur’an: {whoever has taqwa of Allah and keeps patient, then Allah will definitely not cause the deeds of the good-doers to be lost…}.[2] Meaning: “…‘whoever has taqwa of Allah and remains patient against all kinds of difficulties’; which was the opinion reported from Ibn `Abbas […] {Allah will not cause the deeds of the good-doers to be lost}, i.e. the reward of whoever has this state…”[3]

من يتق الله ويصبر على المصائب، رويت هذه الأقوال عن ابن عباس […] قوله تعالى: {فإن الله لا يضيع أجر المحسنين} أي: أجر مَنْ كان هذا حاله

Often, there are severe delays on the tube with already quite agitated commuters trying to get from one place to another in the station weaving in and out of their fellow commuters. One will also face regular knocks, bumps and pushes – especially during the rush hour and mainline stations – and hear irritated and irate individuals tutting, scowling as well as sighing in exasperation at periodic announcements of “delays occurring on several London underground lines”. In all this, a believer should remain calm, collected and accept such challenges with strong patience. H/she should take great comfort from the words of our beloved Messenger (saw) who said: “Whoever tries to have patience, Allah will grant him patience. And no-one has been given a more generous or better gift than patience…”[4]

ومن يتصبر يصبره الله، وما أعطي أحد عطاء خيرا وأوسع من الصبر

Thus, one must seek to have a state of patience and bear the difficulty on h/her travels and ask Allah for increase and strength in that as it is a gift from Allah out of his mercy as a means of eliminating sins and drawing one closer to Him as well as elevating his rank. Imam Ibn al-Qayyim comments: “The best life is attained by the blessed through their having patience and they rise to the highest ranks through their gratitude [s: to Allah]. So they fly on the wings of patience and gratitude to gardens of delight. That is the bounty of Allah that He bestows upon whoever He wants and Allah is the Owner of Great Bounty…”[5]

فخير عيش أدركه السعداء بصبرهم وترقوا إلى أعلى المنازل بشكرهم فساروا بين جناحي الصبر والشكر إلى جنات النعيم وذلك فضل الله يؤتيه من يشاء والله ذو الفضل العظيم

And with Allah is all success.


[1] See The Essential Elements of the Islamic Disposition, pp.75-76.

[2] See Q. 12:90.

[3] Ibn al-Jawzi, Zad al-Masir, 1:354.

[4] Bukhari, Sahih (#1469). See also al-Mundhiri, al-Targhib wa ’l-Tarhib, 4:274-302 for more narrations of the merits and excellence of having patience.

[5] Ibn al-Qayyim, `Uddat al-Sabirin, p.5.


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