Waking up in the morning can be transformed into an amazing experience of worship if we follow the beautiful etiquettes from the Sunnah of the Prophet ﷺ. The same time which we usually spend in tossing and turning in bed, not wanting to get up and feeling burdened by laziness and lethargy… can be made most productive simply by following these simple but meaningful acts:
1- Remove the traces of sleep from the face…
Our Beloved Prophetﷺ used to wipe his hands over his face to remove the effects of sleep. The wisdom in this act of Sunnah is that the touch of the hands stimulates the nerves of the face and makes one feel alert and active. You can try it just now… at this moment… stop reading and wipe your hands over your face… how did you feel? For myself it makes me feel comforted, refreshed and re-energized. So remember to act on this Sunnah first thing in the morning to say goodbye to sleep and welcome to the new day with a new energy. This will not only refresh your mood but will also fill your heart with pleasure that you started your day with an act of worship…
2- To Remember Allah upon waking…
The first thing that a believer does after regaining consciousness is that he remembers Allah; because he knows that it is Allah who gave him life once again and it is Allah who deserves his first and foremost attention. Our Prophet ﷺ said, “Satan puts three knots at the back of the head of any of you when he is asleep. On every knot he reads and blows the following words, ‘The night is long, so stay asleep.’ When one wakes up and remembers Allah, one knot is undone; and when one performs ablution, the second knot is undone, and when one prays salah the third knot is undone and one gets up energetic with a good heart in the morning; otherwise one gets up with a lazy and polluted heart.”
It is important to note here that you are more likely to remember Allah if you went to sleep with His remembrance. Otherwise you will wake up with the same issues which were hovering over your heart the night before. That is why one rule which I try to live by is never to fall into arguments before sleeping. Because it will ruin your peace and you won’t feel good when you wake up. So always take special care of the time after Isha and make it as stress-free as possible. Focus on Allah and keep saying his name while you fall asleep so that when you wake up the next morning you will remember Him.
So what were the words with which our Prophet ﷺ remembered Allah in the morning?
Dua-1- Gratitude for Coming back to Life…
According to a Hadith the Prophet ﷺ used to say the following dua when he woke up from sleep:
الحَمْدُ لِلهِ الَّذِي أَحْيَانَا بَعْدَ مَا أَمَاتَنَا وَإِلَيْهِ النُّشُورُ
All praise is for Allah who gave us life after causing us to die, and unto Him is the resurrection.
Notice how in just a few words our Prophetﷺ has expressed his deep gratitude and awareness of Allah’s favour on us… that He makes us come back to life… and also the fact that one day we will face the final awakening… that is “the day” for which all our days should be spent. That is the day when we will “really” and truly wake up because there will be no more illusions… we will wake up to reality as never before. Therefore to remind ourselves of the ultimate awakening, first thing in the morning, is so crucial for us to straighten up our thoughts and to focus on spending our time wisely. Because when we remind ourselves of this up-coming event then all irrelevant thoughts are driven away from our hearts and we become alert and conscious not to lose any time on irrelevant activities which make us forget the reality.
Dua-2- Gratitude for the Restoration of health and abilities…
Another dua from the Prophet is also very beautiful and meaningful:
الْحَمْدُ لِلهِ الَّذِي عَافَانِي فِي جَسَدِي وَرَدَّ عَليَّ رُوْحِي وَأَذِنَ لِي بِذِكْرِهِ
All praise is for Allah who restored to me my health and returned my soul and has allowed me to remember Him.
The realization that Allah has “chosen” to give me back my health and “allowed” me to remember Him is such a powerful medicine which kills all the germs of arrogance and heedlessness. Normally we recognize health as Allah’s blessing but we never think that the ability to remember Allah is also a favour on us… so instead of feeling proud of our piety, we should be grateful to Allah that He has saved us from forgetting Him. So you see how beautiful is the Sunnah of our Prophet ﷺ that it makes us wise and thoughtful right from the start of the new day so that we don’t lose our way.
3- Recite the end of Surah Aal-e-Imraan…
When our Prophet ﷺ used to wake up from sleep he would recite the last ten verses of Surah Aal-e-Imran. If you contemplate on the meaning of these ayaat, you will see that they begin by acknowledging the fact that Allah has put tremendous signs in the universe for the people to understand Him and His power but only those people see these signs who use their intellect… who remember Allah at all times… whether they are standing, sitting or lying down… and their remembrance is not just restricted to use of words… but they ponder on the creation of the heavens and the earth; and they admit that Allah has not created all of this without any purpose. They are not deceived by the illusions of self praise because they realize that only Allah is perfect… so they pray to Him to be saved from the fire because they realize that none of their deeds are perfect.
So the first few verses really open the eyes of our hearts… And then there are some awesome duas in the remaining portion which make us connect to Allah in hope and fear… providing for us the perfect balance for walking on the tightrope of this world.
Learn these awesome ayaat (with their meaning) and experience the power and beauty of Allah’s words washing your heart and cleansing it to start a fresh new day.
(to be continued… in-sha-Allah)