Deprivation

Instead of fixating on all that you couldn’t do, acknowledge how much it took to find ways to thrive past your handicaps and difficulties. Yeah, you may have been able to go farther and faster with a streamlined flow. But your ability to push through boulders and cut through rock like water, refusing to be held back by dams, that’s infinitely more important and awe-inspiring than reaching a certain destination. You can’t fake that. You made it through when everything was against you. You made it through when you got abandoned and stranded. You had to be abandoned and left to your own devices for you to discover the invincible fire in you. Everything else pales in comparison. This is what you were created for. Your ability to endure tension and have night vision with no night vision device. That’s the true genius. And you had to be blocked elsewhere in order for that hidden quality to come into fruition.

Don’t underestimate Allaah’s order and vision for you. Every single piece and move originated through His will. Everything is inertia in essence, immobility, inanimate until He breathes life and movement into things. So failure is just something reverting to its natural state, without divine dynamism. Don’t take progress and hustle for granted. None of us are shit without divine backup. And where Allaah ain’t backing us, it’s a sign to backtrack and retrace our steps to where the path felt vibrant with resonance.

وَإِذْ قَالَ مُوسَىٰ لِفَتَاهُ لَا أَبْرَحُ حَتَّىٰ أَبْلُغَ مَجْمَعَ الْبَحْرَيْنِ أَوْ أَمْضِيَ حُقُبًا

And (remember) when Moosaa said to his boy-servant: “I will not give up (travelling) until I reach the junction of the two seas or (until) I spend years and years in travelling.”

فَلَمَّا بَلَغَا مَجْمَعَ بَيْنِهِمَا نَسِيَا حُوتَهُمَا فَاتَّخَذَ سَبِيلَهُ فِي الْبَحْرِ سَرَبًا

But when they reached the junction of the two seas, they forgot their fish, and it took its way through the sea as in a tunnel.

فَلَمَّا جَاوَزَا قَالَ لِفَتَاهُ آتِنَا غَدَاءَنَا لَقَدْ لَقِينَا مِن سَفَرِنَا هَٰذَا نَصَبًا

So when they had passed further on (beyond that fixed place), Moosaa said to his boy-servant: “Bring us our morning meal; truly, we have suffered much fatigue in this, our journey.”

قَالَ أَرَأَيْتَ إِذْ أَوَيْنَا إِلَى الصَّخْرَةِ فَإِنِّي نَسِيتُ الْحُوتَ وَمَا أَنسَانِيهُ إِلَّا الشَّيْطَانُ أَنْ أَذْكُرَهُ وَاتَّخَذَ سَبِيلَهُ فِي الْبَحْرِ عَجَبًا

He said:“Do you remember when we betook ourselves to the rock? I indeed forgot the fish, none but Shaitaan made me forget to remember it. It took its course into the sea in a strange (way)!”

قَالَ ذَٰلِكَ مَا كُنَّا نَبْغِ فَارْتَدَّا عَلَىٰ آثَارِهِمَا قَصَصًا

Moosaa said: “That is what we have been seeking.” So they went back retracing their footsteps.

فَوَجَدَا عَبْدًا مِّنْ عِبَادِنَا آتَيْنَاهُ رَحْمَةً مِّنْ عِندِنَا وَعَلَّمْنَاهُ مِن لَّدُنَّا عِلْمًا

Then they found one of Our slaves, unto whom We had bestowed mercy from Us, and whom We had taught knowledge from Us.

(Al-Kahf :60-65)

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