Questioner: Mawlana, how do you know if, how do you know if you’re, you’re on the right path? Like how do you like, for example, let’s say, if you’re a student in school , you get a report card, it tells you how you’re doing. As a Muslim, how do know if you’re …
Shaykh Hisham: … [jokingly] sitting on the couch like you are? [laughter]
Questioner: You tell me.
Shaykh Hisham: As long as your heart feels peaceful, it is what you are doing , Alhamdulillah, is all right. When you begin to feel that your heart is worried, then you know that they are doing something wrong. [Asks questioner:] Are you happy with what you are doing?
Shaykh Hisham: Okay, Alhamdulillah, good. [To another audience member:] Are you happy with what you are doing?
Audience Member #1: Subhana Allah.
Shaykh Hisham: Alhamdulillah. [To another audience member] Are you happy with what you are doing?
Audience Member #2: What I’m doing? I’m happy. [laughs]
Shaykh Hisham: Alhamdulillah. [Now he asks himself] Are, you happy with what you are doing?
NO ! No, I’m not happy. [laughter]
This depends on how you feel, that are you doing something good for yourself by benefiting the, the ummah, by worshipping? So you have to judge for yourself. So if you find that you are happy, then, Alhamdulillah…
Questioner: To critique yourself is hard sometimes…
Shaykh Hisham: Yeah it’s hard, but it’s easy. You can think: “Today what I have done? Did I hurt anyone heart? Did I lie? Did I did something wrong? You think… you’ll find lots of mistakes! All right? So you know, that’s why Sayyidina ‘Umar said: “who, every day you evaluate you, your, what you have done. If you find that your work yesterday was better than your work today, better for you to be under ground than to be above ground.” It means every day you have to improve yourself. If you don’t improve, it means you are losing.
That’s why Sayyidina ‘Umar put one person in his, at his door, when he used to enter, to remind him of akhira [hereafter]. One day he said to that person: “I don’t need you anymore” – after many years: “I don’t need, I don’t need you , I don’t.” He said, “Sayyidina ‘Umar , why, why don’t you need me anymore?” He said, ” Me, I was sitting there for two, three years at your door telling you, remind ’Remember akhira, the next life, remember akhira’ whenever you enter your house, whenever you go.’ He said, “Now, I have already, Allah gave me two, two reminders for me for akhira.” He said, “What are they?” He said, “My beard has two white hairs. Now I know that I am on the way to die.”
So, if you have this consciousness, then, you know what you do and you can report yourself what you are doing. And that’s why sometimes you need a guide. Just now you said in the university they have reports. Who gives them the reports? Who gives them the grades? Not the guide? not the professor. So you need a guide, because he has more experience and a Shaykh to tell you “Okay , you improved this much, make more on this, on this side, make some more on that side.” And by this way you can…