Assalamu’alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh,
IN THE NAME OF ALLAH, THE MOST BENEFICENT, THE MOST MERCIFUL
Apathy involves a lack of interest in different aspects of life. There are several causes of apathy and before dealing with the problem we have to pause and find out the cause. There are several ways of finding out the cause and dealing with apathy.
Some of these causes are: a weak relationship with Allah, laziness in worship, keeping company with careless people, being distracted by this world and its delights, and not thinking about the end of this world and the consequences of being ill-prepared to meet Allah.
As for how to treat the Muslim who has been afflicted by apathy in worship, there are several ways of doing so including the following:
1 – Strengthening his relationship with his Lord, by reading the Qur’aan and pondering its meanings, realizing the greatness of Allah by seeing the greatness of His Book, thinking about the greatness of His names and attributes and actions.
2 – Regularly offering naafil prayers and persisting in doing so, even if they are few, because one of the greatest causes of the Muslim becoming apathetic is when he starts to do acts of worship and does a great deal in the beginning. This is not the way of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and is not what he advised his ummah to do. ‘Aa’ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) described his actions as ongoing, i.e., not interrupted or infrequent. And the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) told us that, “The most beloved of actions to Allah are those which are done persistently, even if they are little.” If a Muslim wants not to be afflicted by apathy, then let him strive to do a small action persistently, because this is better than doing a lot infrequently.
3 – Striving to keep company with righteous and active people. A man who is energetic (in worship and Islamic activities) will make you more active and lazy people do not like active companions. So look for active friends who strive to memorize Qur’an, seek knowledge and call people to Allah. Friends like that will encourage you to worship and will show you the way to good things.
4 – Read books that tell the stories of active people so that you will have good examples in your journey towards Allah. For example, ‘Uluw al-Himmah by Shaykh Muhammad ibn Ismaa’eel al-Muqaddim; Salaah al-Ummah fi ‘Uluw al-Himmah by Shaykh Sayyid ‘Afaani.
5 – We advise you to make du’aa’, especially in the latter part of the night. The one who turns to his Lord and seeks His help to remain steadfast in worshiping Him and to worship Him well will never be let down.
We ask Allah to help you to do that which pleases Him and to guide you to the best attitudes, words and deeds.
Allah knows best.