Happiness cannot be purchased

Maulana Wahiduddin Khan I The Sunday Guardian I March 09, 2014

Robert Warne Wilson was born on 3 November 1926, in a lower upper-middle income family in Detroit. He started with humble beginnings and worked his way up to amass a wealth amounting to $800 million. Then came the other side of the picture.

According to reports, Wilson suffered a debilitating stroke a few months ago, which led to health problems. According to his friends, he always said he didn't want to suffer, and when the time came, he would be ready. He took his life by throwing himself from his 16th floor apartment in New York on 23 December 2013.

There are many cases of this kind of suicide. Why do these people opt for suicide when they have all kind of worldly things in their possession? The reason is that when a person begins his life, he believes that if he is able to earn money, he will also achieve happiness. According to him, happiness is a purchasable item. But after he amasses wealth, he discovers that money failed to give him a happy life. Then there are other problems, such as old age, accident, and disease.

This reminds us of a very relevant Quranic verse: "Surely, in the remembrance of God, hearts can find comfort." (13:28) To remember God is not to recite the word "God".

It is to make God one's sole concern. It is to discover the creation plan of God. It is to mould one's life according to the divine culture. It is to adopt Paradise as one's goal. In a single word, it is to adopt the God-oriented life. Finding God means to find one's real purpose in life. When a person discovers his real purpose in life, he develops his personality as what has been called in the Quran a "soul at peace" (89:27).