We pray to Allah mornings and evenings, days and nights. After making our own prayers we request each other to remember us in their du’as (supplications). We yearn for the acceptance of our du’as. We have the obvious hope in Allah سبحانه وتعالى that our innermost desires, concerns and fears will be addressed and answered.
We plead with Allah and weep, we bow and prostrate to Allah, we spend so much time praying to Allah. We travel all the way to Makkah and Madinah, to the holy sites, with the intention of making du’a, so that our du’a is accepted by Allah. When people travel and they bring back gifts for us from the holy lands, we plead with them and say we do not wish for anything; the only thing we were hopeful of is that when they were in front of the Ka’ba, in the haram of Makkah, in the haram of Madinah, at these holy sites, that they remembered us in their pious prayers.
In many ahadeeth, Rasulullah صلى الله عليه وسلم has informed us of those things which ensure the acceptance of our prayers. One such thing is humbleness. We learn from the ahadeeth that simplicity, humbleness, humility before Allah سبحانه وتعالى ensure the acceptance of du’a. An example is Hajj; when we travel for Hajj or for Umrah, we are in the state of ihraam. How do we dress before Allah? We humble ourselves; we lower ourselves; we shun and abandon all embellishment, beauty, ornamentation, and beautification. We humble ourselves before Allah سبحانه وتعالى, showing our need of Allah and showing our simplicity before Him. So we put on two simple cloths of ihraam. We are forbidden from clipping our hair, from cleaning ourselves in such a way that we remove our dirt, dust and hair from our bodies. We cannot trim our nails, we cannot clip our hair, we cannot apply fragrance. We forcibly place ourselves in an unkempt state. All of this is designed to humble ourselves before Allah so that our dua’s are accepted in the state of ihraam.
[This short excerpt is based on the talk ‘The Need for Halal and Pure Intake’ which was delivered by Shaykh Abu Yusuf Riyadh ul Haq on 19th January 2008. For a more comprehensive understanding of this topic please refer to that lecture].