What Are The Best Deeds In The Eyes Of Allah SWT?June 21, 2021 2023-08-09 2:21
What Are The Best Deeds In The Eyes Of Allah SWT?
As Muslims, we strive to please Allah SWT and gain His blessings with as many good deeds as we can so that we may benefit in this life with success, ease, good health, and other blessings, but also and most importantly earn the ultimate reward: Jannah, Paradise.
You might have noticed that the Quran and the Ahadith are full of ideas when it comes to what kind of good deeds we could try to accomplish to meet these lofty goals. As a matter a fact, the more you will learn about the Quran and Sunnah, the more examples you will find, especially small deeds like greeting your Muslim brother/sister, doing dhikr, or removing a potentially harmful object from a path! This is because Allah SWT wants ease and success for us.
For many of us though, it can feel overwhelming to learn about all of these deeds. We start off with good intentions, we make lists of all the things we could do to please Allah SWT and grow closer to Him, but we might end up doing very little, or… nothing at all – or so we think! Let’s take a step back and look at some of the best deeds we can do – are you already doing them? Read on and let us know in the comments!
Some Of The Best Deeds In The Eyes Of Allah – This is NOT an exhaustive list!
Before we delve right in, let’s start with an important note about intention. Having the right intention when we do something – i.e. doing it solely for the sake of Allah SWT – is paramount to receiving the full reward for it. We all know the hadith: “Actions are (judged) by motives (niyyah), so each person will have what they intended.” (Hadith 1, 40 Hadith of Imam An-Nawawi, Bukhari & Muslim)
All of the deeds we have listed below will only help us draw closer to Allah and please Him if we do them for Him and Him alone, not to please others, pretend, boast, or anything else.
Obedience in Islam means that we listen to and obey Allah’s orders in all circumstances, not only when it’s easy or convenient. Being obedient to Allah SWT will grant you lots of good deeds, as you will be doing exactly what Allah ordered you. This means that, when you restrain yourself from doing something that Allah SWT has forbidden, you are doing a good deed!
This applies to everything in life, and many of the other deeds we have listed below fall under this category as well, so you could earn multiple rewards with one single good deed!
2. Fulfilling Obligatory Duties (Fard)
You will find it impossible to draw close to Allah if you do not perform the required duties that Allah has prescribed for us (Fourud). Even more importantly: contrary to most of the other deeds below which are considered “optional” acts, not fulfilling our obligatory duties without a valid reason will incur bad deeds and sins upon us. It is therefore very important that we first focus on fulfilling our obligations towards Allah before trying to do extra good deeds. And when we do fulfill our obligations, we also accumulate good deeds in our balance. Let’s look at the five pillars of Islam:
- attesting that there is no God but Allah, and that Prophet Muhammad is His Messenger (Peace Be Upon Him),
- performing the five obligatory prayers each day (Salah),
- giving out Zakat (obligatory alms-giving),
- going for Hajj (pilgrimage to the Ka’bah in Mecca),
- fasting during the Holy month of Ramadan.
Other things include being good to our parents, fulfilling the rights of our family members, and more.
3. Avoiding Prohibited (Haram) Things
There are particular things that Allah has ordered us to refrain from. These things pertain to different aspects of life such as food, social interactions, marriage, business, inheritance, and even clothing. By staying away from what is prohibited, we not only save ourselves from falling into sin, we also obey Allah SWT and follow His orders, which means that we are doing a good deed!
Therefore, the more we refrain from doing things that are prohibited, the more good deeds we gain. Prohibited acts include: adultery, consuming pork or alcohol, gambling, usury or interest, etc.
Other actions are considered disliked or discouraged (makruh), and while we would technically not be sinning if we were to occasionally engage in this type of action while not doing so purposefully, we would be rewarded if we decided to stay away from these acts as well.
4. Performing Nawafil Prayers
Nawafil prayers are supererogatory prayers in Islam. The Sunnah prayers done before and/or after the mandatory prayers for instance are supererogatory prayers. They are not regarded as mandatory but are supposed to confer an additional benefit on the person who does them.
Rabi’ah ibn Ka’b reported: I spent the night with the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, and I brought water him water for his ablution and his needs. The Prophet said to me, “Ask.” I said, “I ask for your companionship in Paradise.” The Prophet said, “And anything else besides that?” I said, “That is all.” The Prophet said, “Then help me do it for you by prostrating often.” (Sahih Muslim 489)
These Nawafil prayers include:
- Qiyam ul-Layl or Tahajjud prayers (night prayers): these nightly prayers do not have a fixed number of rakaat, instead, you should pray as much as you can. Tahajjud more specifically refers to nightly prayers that are done after any amount of sleep and before Fajr. The Prophet (Peace and Blessings be Upon Him) is reported to have said, “The best prayer one can perform apart from the obligatory prayers is one performed at night.” (Sahih Muslim 1993)
- Salat ud-Duha: it can be done at anytime in the morning, after the sun has risen and before it reaches its zenith. This is the name that appears the most frequently in the narrations.
- Salat al-Ishraq: is the “sunrise prayer” or the prayer performed about 20 minutes after sunrise, once the sun has completely risen.
- Tahiyyat ul-Masjid: the prayer to “greet” the mosque, the House of Allah. This voluntary prayer of 2 rakaat is done when entering the mosque.
- Dhuhr Sunnah: 4 rakaat before and/or after the Dhuhr prayer. The Prophet (Peace and Blessings be Upon Him) is reported to have said, “Whoever prays regularly four Rak’at before and four Rak’at after the Zuhr prayer, Allah will forbid for him (from entering) the Hellfire.” (Jami` at-Tirmidhi 428)
- Asr Sunnah: 4 rakaat after Asr prayers. The Prophet (Peace and Blessings be Upon Him) said: “May Allah have mercy upon a man who prays four before Al-Asr.” (Jami` at-Tirmidhi 430)
Those who learn, recite and teach Quran are considered the best among Muslims. There is a well-known Hadith by our beloved Prophet (Peace and Blessings be Upon Him) that says:
“[Whoever recites a letter] from Allah’s Book, then he receives the reward from it, and the reward of ten the like of it. I do not say that Alif Lam Mim is a letter, but Alif is a letter, Lam is a letter and Mim is a letter.” (Jami` at-Tirmidhi 3158)
Imagine the number of letters you read within just 10 minutes of reciting the Quran everyday! The benefits of reciting the Quran are various. In order to get closer to Allah, we need to try our best to recite the Quran, understand its teachings, refer to it whenever we feel lost, and implement its lessons in our daily lives.
6. Dhikr (Allah’s Remembrance)
Allah SWT said in the Holy Quran: “So remember Me; I will remember you.” (Surah Al-Baqarah, 2:152)
When we engage in the remembrance of Allah, Allah remembers us in return – this is His promise. By reciting dhikr (phrases that glorify and praise Allah), we gain a lot of good deeds. It can be done anywhere and anytime.
Prophet Muhammad (Peace and Blessings be Upon Him) once said to his companions: “Shall I tell you about the best of deeds, the purest in the sight of your Lord, about the one that is of the highest order and is far better for you than spending gold and silver, even better for you than meeting your enemies in the battlefield where you strike at their necks and they at yours?” The Companions replied, “Yes, O Prophet of Allah!” The Prophet, Peace Be Upon Him, said, “Remembrance of Allah.” (Jami` at-Tirmidhi 3377)
Some of these dhikr phrases are:
- Suhaan Allah
- Subhaan Allahi wa bihamdihi, subhaan Allahi l-‘Azeem
- Astaghfiru Allah
- Laa hawla wa laa quwwatta illa billah
- Laa illaha illAllah
- Allahu Akbar
7. Making Dua
Allah SWT says in the Quran: “Call on Me. I will answer your prayer, but those who are too arrogant to serve Me will surely find themselves humiliated in Hell.” (Surah Ghaafir, 40:60)
Making dua means to supplicate, to turn to Allah and ask for His help in everything. No matter how big or small, you can make dua for any matter. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) is reported to have said, “Supplication (du’a’) is itself the worship” due to how important it is in our deen.
Allah loves to listen to us asking for His help, and He rewards us whenever we do so. So, by making dua you’re not just gaining Allah’s support, but also good deeds associated with it.
8. Voluntary Fasting
Muslims are ordered to fast the month of Ramadan as it is considered Fard (obligatory). Allah SWT gives additional good deeds to whoever fast outside the Ramadan month voluntarily.
Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) used to fast on Mondays and Thursdays, and also encouraged us to fast the three white days:
Narrated Qatadah Ibn Malhan al-Qaysi: The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) used to command us to fast the days of the white (nights): thirteenth, fourteenth and fifteenth of the month. He said: This is like keeping perpetual fast. (Sunan Abi Dawud 2449)
9. Making Tawbah (Repentance)
Tawbah is when a person sins and then sincerely turns to Allah for forgiveness. Allah, being the Most Compassionate and Merciful, rewards us greatly when we make tawbah and promises to forgive whoever turns to Him sincerely, no matter what they did.
“And whoever does a wrong or wrongs himself but then seeks forgiveness of Allah will find Allah Forgiving and Merciful.” (Surah An-Nisa’, 4:110)
Repentance is a wonderful deed that cleanses the soul and brings the servant closer to Allah. It relieves the heart of guilt. It keeps one from yielding to their desires and passions, and it strengthens their faith.
Now you know some of the best deeds in the eyes of our Creator, Allah. Try to focus on this short list and build small but consistent habits to please Allah SWT and hope for the many rewards, in this life and the next.
May Allah SWT accept from you, ameen!