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Prerequisites to Pleasure in Prayer

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*TL;DR*
Does Salat feel like a chore? It shouldn't. You have to do it anyways, so better make it pleasant. Like it should be.
*End TL;DR*

(1 min reading)
The beginning of surah mu'minun gives a list of attributes of, well, mu'minun. True believers.

The first is khusyu' in prayer. And honestly, i don't consistently focus in prayer.

But this morning I realized that the list is like a set of steps. You can't skip a step while going up.

Guarding the prayer is the last in the list. It's also the easiest. Above it is guarding promises/trust, then guarding private parts, then zakat.

I think Allah is implying that one who doesn't guard the prayer will struggle to keep promises. And one who doesn't guard their privates may be disinclined to pay zakat.

The ayat after khusyu' is about avoiding laghw'- useless activities and speech. This means that if one doesn't avoid time wasters, khusyu' in prayer will be difficult.

Now in case someone asks why khusyu&…

Nice Lies

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An old woman got on a train and all seats were full. An old man got up and asked her to sit down. She refused at first, but the man finally convinced her by saying "Binece─čim" -I'm going to get off. When the train reached the next stop, he didn't get off.
It was then I thought, "This old man lied. A nice lie, but a lie nonetheless".
He did get off at the stop after that. But it did make me consider: Are nice lies good?
Nice lies aren't necessarily lies by their wording alone. To elaborate, this old man did get off, so he didn't exactly lie. However, in a context where everyone would leave the train at some point, he implied he would be getting off so soon such that a seat was unnecessary for him. Thus, nice lies can be implicit while the explicit wording is true.
Furthermore, nice lies must aim to help or please someone else. For example, if a socially weak person is wrongly accused, a more respected individual may take the blame to prevent the for…

Would you have believed if...?

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A small thought.
If there was no veil between humans and Allah (and the rest of the unseen), wouldn't more humans believe and submit to Allah? Wouldn't that be better than having a large proportion of humans punished due to disbelief in the unseen?
Not really. Remember that the devil disobeyed Allah.
Not knowing everything is actually a mercy for humans. It allows sinners and wrongdoers room for repentance and return to faith. For if people could see Allah directly, only immediate condemnation would be fair - there would be no room for forgiveness in lapses and sin. Thus, one reason Allah placed the veil seems to be allowing us to turn to Him.
If humans were to see the Ghayb, would they all be pious? Allah knows best. Perhaps even more would be headed for Hell.

Focused Thinking

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Ever feel like you can’t concentrate? Like the stuff you gotta do seems too much work? Even though your body seems fine? Perhaps you’re lacking mental energy. You see, our brain is just like any part of the body- it can become tired if overworked and not given rest. So when you do anything that requires thinking- which is probably most of your tasks- then you spend mental energy. Switching between tasks uses up mental energy, like pushing a trolley- takes a lot to get started, quite easy to maintain speed. When switching tasks, you mentally lay out your new task. When you switch tasks every 5 minutes, you burn all your energy and time just prepping for the next task instead of doing anything! This also applies to thought switching. When your mind is like “I gotta do my English homework about literature. Hmm… in that anime, what was the Main Character’s backstory again? And what was on my Wattpad list… oh yeah, that fanfiction about cooking. I wonder how to make some trile├že cake?”, then …

Hide Your Sins: You're Setting an Example

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Others follow your actions, realize it or not. When you chatter in class, your friends will feel like talking and ignoring the boring teacher. When you study hard and get high marks, these same friends will feel like becoming serious too. 
So keep your sins under wraps. No human is an angel, but don't show off your mistakes either. A bad reputation doesn't only hurt you- it influences those around you to follow your mistakes too.
Allah covers your sins up to a point. There's the story of a thief who was caught and brought to Umar RA. The thief claimed this was his first time and should be forgiven, but Umar RA didn't believe him and said Allah doesn't expose first-time sinners. And he was right- the thief admitted later he had already stolen 20 times. So when we sin occasionally, worry about repenting more than being exposed.
Things are different, however, if you expose your sin when Allah has already covered it for you. With social media and our innate desire for…