Book Review: The Key To Success
Book name: The Key to Success
Author: ￼Imam Ahmad Ibn Hanbal
This book is a very good book. It is easy to understand and talks about how to be a successful person in the eyes of Allah. These are some of the many useful advice that really touched my heart:
- Your deeds are always based on original intentions, so intend good and restrain yourself from all evil.
- Do not feel sad when struck with afflictions, for they clean the hearts, sharpen the minds and whet the resolutions.
- Hard work is the greatest way to attain good fortune. It is the balm for your ailments, and the remedy for all your diseases. It is also your treasure.
- A person’s value lays in that which they can do well. The idle person is valueless, the unsuccessful person is hateful, and the ineffective person is of little significance.
- Focus your attention on a single endeavor to which you devote yourself whole-heartedly, so that you can be creative.
- Begin with the most important, then the less important, and avoid the dissipating your energy on many jobs, for that leads to confusion and incompetence.
- The lazy person is deprived (of all good); the idle person is regretful; blessing lies in activity; and whoever goes forward and travels here and there surpasses other men (in experience).
These are some of the most successful people in the world mentioned in this book. Some I already look up to, but some I was also introduced to through this book. They are important to the History of Islam and should be our heroes and what we strive for in our daily lives. Without resources, without the ease we have today, they were able to do for Allah as individuals what whole nations today are unable to do. They deserve our due respect and our admiration more than anyone.
- Sayyidinah Abu Bakr (RA) was the first man to become Muslim and the first Khalifah of Islam. The second of two persons (in the cave of Thawr), he spent all his property (in the way of Allah The Almighty) and will be called (on the Day of Judgment) to enter Paradise from all of its eight gates. He was also the one who fought to suppress apostasy after the death of the Prophet Muhammad (SAW). He compiled the Qur’an into book form in his Khilafah to help preserve its message for generations to come.
- Sayyidinah Umar (RA) was the second Khalifah of Islam and the strongest advocate for justice and peace, aside from the Prophets (AS), that the world has ever seen. He oversaw the fall and rise of many empires and did the seemingly impossible by conquering Jerusalem without bloodshed and was personally welcomed by the people into her gates. His Faith was so strong that Satan himself used to flee when he saw him and the Divine Revelation concurred with his opinions more than once.
- Sayyidinah Uthman (RA) was the Third Khalifah of Islam. His beauty, modesty, and generosity are still spoken of today. He was a wealthy merchant, who spent his time, energy, and fortune in the way of Allah SWT and was always strong in his Faith. An example of his generosity was that he purchased the Well of Roomah for the advantage of all the Muslim inhabitants of Al-Madinah. His most important endeavor was that he had official manuscripts of the Qur’an made and had all unofficial copies destroyed, so there could be no room for errors. He also had accents added to the Qur’an for non-native speakers of the Arabic language, so that the meaning of the words would be preserved. Only these official manuscripts were to be distributed. This is the Qur’an as it exists today.
- Sayyidinah Ali (RA) was the first child to become Muslim and was the fourth Khalifah of Islam. He was a warrior, brave and strong. He was the one to sleep in the bed of the Prophet Muhammad SAW when the Quraysh wanted to kill him in his sleep. He was fearless when it came to fighting for the cause of Allah SWT. He was the first to raise a sword in the name of Allah in battle, by engaging in and winning the starting duel in the Battle of Badr. He conquered the fort of Khaybar and killed Marhab (the Jew). He slew ‘Amr Ibn Wudd, a man who towered over him, in the Battle of Al-Khandaq. Ali’s (RA) virtue led him to be one of the most influential men the world has ever seen.
Some scholars that are mentioned in this book, include:
- Imam An-Nawawi (Rahim’Allah) used to read, write, memorize, pray and exalt (Allah The Almighty) day and night. Whenever he was overpowered by slumber, he would take a little nap while sitting just to quickly recharge, so that he could continue his studies. His collection of the 40 Hadith are regarded as one of the best works of Islam and are still taught all around the world.
- Ibn Seena (Rahim’Allah) is known to be one of the most significant physicians, astronomers, thinkers and writers of Islam. He is also known as the “father of modern medicine”. The key to his success was his constant research and the fact that he used to write twenty-five pages per day. He wrote many books like “Head-to-Toe Diseases” that are still studied today.
- Ibn Taymiyyah (Rahim’Allah) was one of the most regarded scholars of Islam. He lived a very simple life, taught many students, and wrote a great amount of books. He was put in prison during a time of great Fitnah and produced the impressive “Al-Fatwa Al-Kubra”, which is thirty volumes. His work is still quoted and studied.
- Imam Al-Bukhaari (Rahim’Allah) is the author of As-Sahih Al Bukhari, for whom Allah SWT opened the path to knowledge. He worked, day and night, in travelling and collecting the traditions, until he became known as the Imam of Hadiths. His accurate memory was trusted and famous across the Muslim world. He was gifted with sound knowledge and precise understanding, along with noble moral conduct and an upright character. He left a blessed heritage in knowledge. As-Sahih Al Bukhari, the book of the authentic Hadiths, is regarded as the most glorious book after the Noble Qur’an.
- Imam Malik (Rahim’Allah) is known as the Imam of Madinah. He was the author of Al-Muwatta’, outdid the people in intellect, and spent his entire lifetime in the search of authentic Ahadith. He gained the witness of seventy scholars for his competence in giving Fatwa. People traveled to him from different directions in search of knowledge and understanding of Islam. He was gifted with respect, admiration and a pleasant appearance, beautiful outward and sincere inward. He is still revered to this day and his work is still used to teach scholars of all levels throughout the world.
These are some of the most successful people in the history of the world and their success only came from working in the way of Allah SWT sincerely and without expectation of rewards from anyone but Allah SWT. They spent their days in the remembrance of Allah SWT and never lost sight of their goals. So, Allah has made it so we remember them and learn from their examples.
I recommend this book to anyone who would like to learn how to be a successful person in this world and the Hereafter. We usually get the meaning of success from the Dunya through mainstream books, movies, superheroes, and TV, but that success is temporary and deceiving. The people that have this fake success will never be truly happy. The success through the Qur’an and Sunnah is everlasting and will give peace and joy, even in times of hardships. After all, the pleasure of Allah is our pleasure. Inner peace and happiness makes people do great things. That only comes through Allah and following the example of our very successful Prophet Muhammad SAW.
May Allah always guide us, let us never get tired of working in His Way, and may He give us success as He wants in this life and the Hereafter, Ameen.