Imagine you’re a student in your final year at university.
This year will decide the fate of your dreams once and for all — pass and you’re well on your way to achieving your dreams. Failure is simply not worth thinking about — your life wouldn’t be worth living if you did the unthinkable and flunked.
On day one, your professor lays out the criteria and all of the required assignments for students to pass the class. There are no exceptions to the rule.
Pay attention now, this is the important part!
It was made crystal clear that these required assignments include a mid-year exam, a group project assignment, two essays and a final exam.
You’re focused and ready for a year of hard study to pass with flying colours.
As the year passes, you find a certain module absolutely fascinating and get obsessed with it. You get deeper and deeper into this and start neglecting the other work. But for this mini subject, you produce an exceptional research paper which becomes a thesis-level body of work. You could probably write a book on it, the work is that profound.
You’re excited. This could lead to fame, riches and influence.
The end of the year comes.
The professor now reviews what you submitted before deciding to pass or fail you. The thesis is of great quality, possibly the best piece of work he’s seen submitted and you were a good student in general in terms of attendance and conduct. But you neglected most of the required assignments laid out at the start.
What should your professor do?
Most people would say that the professor in this instance has every right to fail the student.
You neglected the rules of the test from the very outset. How can you hope to pass?
You may think “But look at all of the extra work I did, I achieved more than anything else you requested!” the professor can very reasonably reply, “I did not tell you to focus on that, rather, you did this on your own. I gave you a very specific set of clear assignments to submit but you did not comply. So you fail.”
Your passing and failing now becomes solely dependent on the professor’s mercy alone. Now he holds your future and your fate in his hands.
Allah placed a set of required ‘assignments’ for us to follow and submit to Him. If someone were to neglect all of those required assignments and focus exclusively on the extra credit, then it can quite reasonably be considered that they did not fulfil the original assignment set out.
Too many of us today forget the original purpose we were created for and begin to think like the student, in terms of fame, influence and riches in the dunya. On the flipside, many forget the original assignments and stop ‘studying’ altogether, choosing to get high or follow their desires.
Rumi said it best when he said:
“It is as if a king had sent you to a country to carry out one special, specific task. You go to the country and you perform a hundred other tasks, but if you have not performed the task you were sent for, it is as if you have done nothing at all. So people have come into the world for particular tasks, and that is our purpose. If we don’t perform it, we will have done nothing.”
Are you fulfilling your assignments? Or do you want to rely solely on the mercy of the Ultimate ‘professor’?
Do you feel like you’ve been prioritising the wrong assignments? If you’d like some help with this, we can discuss your assignment at https://calendly.com/kypp/purpose