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How to repent from sins and ask for Allah’s forgiveness

How to repent from sins and ask for Allah’s forgiveness

The merits and rewards of ‘Tawbah’ (repentance to Allah), were discussed in an earlier post. This article focuses on how one can repent for the sins committed, and to earn Allah’s pleasure for asking for such forgiveness. As Allah the Most Caring assures us:

Surah Az-Zumar Verse 53

“Say: O My slaves who have transgressed against themselves (by committing evil deeds and sins)! Despair not of the Mercy of Allah, verily, Allah forgives all sins. Truly, He is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” (Surah Az-Zumar 39:53)

He also says in the Quran:

surah al-baqara verse 222

Indeed Allah loves those who repent and purify themselves. [Surah Al Baqarah, 2:222]

The following paragraphs summarize some of the steps one can  take to ask Allah for His forgiveness. However, along with the following, the sinner should ensure that he or she feels sorry for the sins, desist from committing them, and make a resolve not to recommit those sins. We should also attempt to move away from situations and environments that encourage sinful behavior.

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Ask for forgiveness after the Salat (prayers)

The best time for seeking Allah’s forgiveness is after the Salat. (It goes without saying that we should be regular in offering Salat). Allah guides us in this matter as well. He, the most Merciful, Says:
surah hud verse 114
“And perform Salaat, at the two ends of the day and in some hours of the night [i.e. the five compulsory Salaat].” (Hud 11:114).

dua forgiveness islam

Asking Allah for forgiveness day and night

Being steadfast in prayers day and night and constantly asking Allah for forgiveness can help us repent for our sins. Abu Musa Al-Ash`ari (R.A.A) reported: The Prophet (S.A.W.S) said: “Allah, the Exalted, will continue to stretch out His Hand in the night so that the sinners of the day may repent, and continue to stretch His Hand in the daytime so that the sinners of the night may repent, until the sun rises from the west (start of day of judgment)”. [Sahih Muslim].

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Using Allah’s names to ask for His forgiveness

While seeking forgiveness, Allah’s names concerning His Attributes of forgiveness and kindness should be used. Among the perfect Names of Allah, the Majestic and Most High, is Al-‘Afuww (He who pardons), and Al-Ghafoor (He who forgives), and Al-Ghaffaar (The Oft-Forgiving). Allah, the Majestic and Most High, loves our calling upon Him by His names and worshipping Him by that which His names demand. As He said:

Surah Al-A'raaf verse 180

“And Allah has the most excellent and perfect names, so worship and invoke Him by them” (Al-A’raaf ,7:180)

The Prophet has said in a hadith reported in the two Sahihs’ from Abu Hurairah , “Allah has ninety-nine names. Whoever memorizes and is mindful of them (ahsaahaa) will enter Paradise.” (Al-Bukhari, vo1. 8, no. 419 and Muslim, no.6476.)

However, ‘… memorizing and being mindful of them …’ (ihsaa), is not merely writing these names on a piece of paper and reciting them, as some people do. Scholars have explained that ‘ihsaa’ of the names comprises of three stages. The first of these is to memorize the names. The second is to understand their meanings. And the third is to call upon Allah by these names in context of the calling.

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Staying away from forbidden matters and performing the obligatory deeds

Allah tells us in the Quran that doing good deeds can help us in erasing our bad deeds. He says in the Quran:

Surah Hud 114

Verily, the good deeds remove the evil deeds (i.e. small sins). That is a reminder (an advice) for the mindful (those who accept advice).” (Hud 11:114)

Focusing on the obligatory acts and steering clear of what Allah has forbidden, thus helps one distance from sins.

Dua for admitting one’s mistakes and seeking forgiveness

If an evil action has been committed, it should be followed up with a good one. Righteous actions expiate the evil actions as the Prophet (S.A.W.S) said:

“The five daily prayers and one Jumu’ah to the next, and one Ramadan to the next Ramadan, is expiation for what lies between them as a long as one refrains from the major sins.” [Sahih Muslim]

And he said: “One Umrah to the next is an expiation for what is in between them” [Sahih Al-Bukhari]

Practicing self control

One can stay away from sins by practicing self control. We can practice self control using that the prophet (S) taught us. For example, we are asked to stem anger by reciting A’udhu Billahi min ash-shaytaan-i’r rajeem (I seek refuge in Allah against the accursed Satan), whenever we get angry and are about to do or say something in a fit of anger. Sins pertaining to fulfillment of desires in the haraam, forbidden way, require self control as well. This should be accompanied with supplications to Allah, as we constantly need His help to strengthen ourselves. To help us in such situations where self control needs to be brought forth, we should think of the rewards that Allah Most Merciful has promised those who exercise patience and restrain themselves from reacting with anger or in any negative manner. Those rewards should not be lost!

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Weeping out of fear of Allah

Anas bin Malik (R.A.A) reported: The Messenger of Allah (S.A.W.S) delivered a Khutbah to us the like of which I had never heard from him before. In the course of the Khutbah, he said: “If you knew what I know, you would laugh little and weep much”.  [Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

Abu Hurairah (R.A.A) reported: Messenger of Allah (S.A.W.S) said, “One who weeps out of fear of Allah, will not enter Hell till milk returns back in the udder…” [At-Tirmidhi].

Dua for general guidance and help

Other acts that can help the sinner in getting Allah’s Forgiveness

Dua for hardship

  • Supplication upon hearing the Athaan: Sa’d ibn Abi Waqqaas, (R.A.A), narrated that the Prophet (S.A.W.S) said, “He who says upon hearing the person calling the Athaan, ‘I also bear witness that none has the right to be worshipped except Allah alone without a partner, and that Muhammad is His slave and messenger. I accept Allah as a Lord, Muhammad as a messenger, and Islam as a religion’ – all his previous sins will be forgiven.” (Sahih Muslim).
  • Saying ‘Ameen’: Abu Hurayrah,(R.A.A) narrated that the Prophet (S.A.W.S) said, “When the Imaam says ‘Ameen’, say ‘Ameen’, because he who coincides with the angels when saying Ameen will get all his previous sins forgiven.” (Al-Bukhaari & Muslim).

quran dua inspiration

  • Praying two rak’aah of salaah attentively: The Prophet (S.A.W.S) said, “He who performs ablution properly, then prays any two rak’aah (of salaah) without being heedless, will get all his previous sins forgiven.” (Ahmad).
  • Gathering in circles of people mentioning Allah: Sahl ibn Hanthalah, R.A.A) narrated that the Prophet (S.A.W.S) said, “It is never that a group of people gather to mention Allah, but they will be told upon leaving the circle (after finishing): ‘Your sins have been forgiven.’” (Ahmad).
  • Being patient in Sickness (accepting it gracefully, without complaints): Aa’ishah (R.A.A), narrated that the Prophet (S.A.W.S) said, “Whenever a believer becomes sick, he will be purified from his sins, just as fire purifies steel.” (Al- Bukhaari).

Conclusion

Let us remember that Prophet Adam (alaihi salam) was misled by Satan into disobeying Allah. However, he regretted it considerably and repented very sincerely. Allah (SWT) showed His Mercy and revealed the words for seeking forgiveness from Him.surah hud 23

“Our Lord! We have wronged ourselves. If Thou forgive us not, and bestow not upon us Your Mercy, we shall certainly be of the losers.” (Al-A’raf; 7:23) and Allah forgave him.

Allah says:

surah hud 37

“……. And his Lord pardoned him (accepted his repentance). Verily, He is the One Who forgives (accepts repentance), the Most Merciful.” (Al-Baqara, 2:37)

Select Duas asking for forgiveness

Both the Quran and Hadith provide us with many Duas that one can use to ask for Allah’s forgiveness. Some of them are stated below:

One should recite Astaghfirullah‘ constantly. This includes saying it 3 times after every salat and a minimum of 100 times a day as was reported in Sahih Muslim

astaghfurallah

“I seek forgiveness from Allah”


hadith forgiveness

“My Rubb! Forgive me and pardon me. Indeed, You are the Oft-Returning with compassion and Ever Merciful.” (Reported in Abu Dawud and At-Tirmidhi).


Allah forgiveness

“O Allah! Forgive my sins, my ignorance, myintemperance in
my affairs and all that I amnot aware of but You know. O Allah!
Forgivemy play and my seriousness. Forgive my sins,be they
undeliberate or deliberate, for all ofwhich I am responsible.”
(Source: Sahih Al-Bukhari # 6398)


hadith sins

“O Allah, You are my Lord, there is no Godbut You. You have created me, and I amYour slave. I try my best to keep my covenant(faith) with You and to live in the hope ofYour promise. I seek refuge in You from theevil I have done. I acknowledge Your favorsupon me, and I admit my sins. Please, forgiveme, for none forgives sins but YOU.” (Source: Sahih Al-Bukhari # 6306)


Subhan Allahi wa bihamdihi; Astaghfirullaha wa atubu ilaihi -Allah is free from imperfection, and I begin with praising Him. I beg forgiveness from Allah and I turn to Him in repentance.” Reported by Aishah (R.A.A) that prior to his death, the Messenger of Allah (S.A.W.S) used to supplicate this dua frequently. [Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

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46 comments… add one
  • binta

    Jazakallahu khairan,it is a good remender to all muslims.may al_gafar for gives us all

  • Vicki Wilson

    Jazak Allah Khairan … Al Ham d-o-Allah for all your lessons for me … May Allah bless you … Ameen … Ya Rab ..

  • Sadiya

    Salaam,tanx.May we always follow the right path.AMEEN.

  • Anwar K. Zubairi

    You are doing a fantastic job ” IQRASENSE ” Keep up and dont stop. Yes we all are sinners and we need DUAS for fogiveness fromk ALLAH SWT.

  • Shahid Ali Khan

    First of all I would like to thank you all who are passing on to us such invaluable guidance. Allah S.T. will suitably reward you for your efforts.
    I pray Allah S.T. to enable me to follow the right path till I am alive.Would request to keep touch with us for guidance.

  • Jazakallahu khairan.May we implement these practices daily,doing so sincerely for the pleasure of Allah.Ameen

  • sani bala

    Allamdulillah! for this piece. It has helped me alot.

  • salahuddin mirza

    Jazakallah ho khaira. as a muslim i have deep regards for your noble instructionc on islam

  • Lamin Bojang

    AlhamdulillAh,for being born and brought up a Muslim, and AlhamdulillAh for Allah loving us so much that he is always forgiving his servants anytime they realize their mistakes and repent to him for his forgiveness and mercy. May Allah forgive us all

  • Ukashat Agbadu

    Assalamu Alaikum! Alhamdulillah Rabbil Alameen.Jazakumu Allahu khairan kabeeran! I learned alot from this acticle. May Allah forgive us and guides us all!

  • hafsa

    Alhamdulilah may Allah make it easy for us amen.

  • Rahma

    Jazakallah khayr, May Allah reward you for the beneficial article. Ameen ya rabb.

  • sarah

    AllahuAkbar,may Allah give you the strength&resources to continue reminding us&may Allah make us of those who hear&act upon what we have heard .AMEEN

  • sayed reshma

    You are doing a fantastic job ” IQRASENSE ” Keep up and dont stop. Yes we all are sinners and we need DUAS for fogiveness from ALLAH SWT.

  • Jazakallah, Its educative.

  • Phiri Douglas

    Thumah aameena, the depth of the whole reminder is so well narrated o that we can all see jannah. Shukhurlahhhh.

  • Ibrahim

    Asaalamu Alaikum all I can say to praise an give thanks to our LOAD ALLAH SWT and also that those putting this wonderful teachings on this site blessed love to you all keep the good work your is with the Most High Allah

  • islam is so
    beautiful. May we live as muslims and die as muslims. May He continue to 4giv us in our trespasses. Amin.

  • Landing

    I bear witness that there is no God but Allah the Almighty. Thanks to Allah The Almighty who can forgive our sins and is the only one who provides us our daily bread. May Allah guides us to the truth and help us to act on the right way. Amen

  • Nora

    Alhamdulillah beautiful article!!! May Allah forgive and guide all the believing men and women. It is really important to seek forgiveness often. May Allah protect us all from the punishment in the hear-after.

  • Ayub Badat

    May Allah SWTA reward IqraSense and those who have been contributing great knowledge of Islam, and also give us Taufiq and Hidaya to remember it and Act accordingly with intention to please Allah SWTA.

  • Khalid Mohib

    what can i say? we r nothing without Allah.
    may all muslims be forgiven and led to the straight path. salam alaikum

  • Tahera juma

    May Allah Reward you.Jazakallah-kheir we are increasing our speed for repentance (Toba). to ALLAH.

  • Salam Alaykum,
    This is a very interesting and informative article and I am sure if we follow it we would get immense benefit. However when I read the topic “How to Seek for Forgiveness” what immediately came to my mind was that I would first be given the basic requirement to seeking for forgiveness and then followed by some more detailed additional information presented in the article.
    For completeness I would like to add this. Both the Holy Qur’aan and Authentic Ahaadith have mentioned conditions for seeking for forgiveness which our learned Imams have summarized as saying that seeking for forgiveness has certain conditions and steps which they are:
    Step 1: One should seek for forgiveness before it is too late, that is when one is not at his last breaths of life. When one rushes for Allah forgiveness when he realizes he would inevitably die, he might not meet condition of Allah acceptance.
    Step 2: One should accept the fact that he has done a sin and regrets sincerely for doing so. Seeking for forgiveness may not be accepted when there is no remorse.
    Step 3: If one is committing a sin and wants forgiveness he should immediately stop and desist from continuing with the sin. A person seeking for forgiveness may not get it when he is continuing with the same sin.
    Step 4: One should take sincere commitment to himself with Allah (SWA) that he would not be repeating that particular sin as long as he lives and should also know that Allah knows our heart more than we know it ourselves and knows exactly if that sin would be repeated and when exactly. It is hoped that Allah would forgive a sincere heart – which he Himself created and with its weakness.
    Step 5: If the sin committed involves right of others, like their wealth, respect, etc, one should return the wealth or appease those whose right he took away or abused.
    Let me conclude saying: Oh Allah (SWA) forgive us if we wrongly interpret the teachings of Islam and reward us with your grace if we get it right, together with all those that read and benefit from sharing the good virtue we learnt from others before us and bless them too.
    Yours
    Mohammed Iliyas

    • Reem

      jazaak allah kheiran brother your feedback also added necessary elements may allah forgive us all and give us the guidance to correct our mistake in time to change our lifestyles to that which pleases allah and grows stronger faith and may our tears and sincere hearts be heard by allah our most forgiving Lord because we our nothing without his mercy..

  • Amidah

    May Almighty Allah increase ur knowledge has u create awareness about Islam to everyone…Jazakallah khayr

  • Imti

    Excellent article, may Allah Reward you.Jazakallah-kheir.
    However, a lot of muslims in the western world whose mother tounge is English still cannot read arabic, we rely on the tranliterations to memorise the Duas.

    Therefore, in your future articles can you also include this.

    Bless You,

    Imtiaz

  • Nadia N.

    JazakhAllahkheir, May ALLAH strengthen our Iman.

  • abdusakoor

    the world is well n wisely govern.Fate has been written already. To change let say to”release” on & off our fate/predestinations, we shud ask with ALLAH. No OTHER ALTERNATIVES.

  • Mariam

    Your messages are enlightening as always. JazakAllah.

  • salahuddin mirza

    jazakaallho khaira, i thank you for providing fundamentals of our faith and telling us about our religion.

  • Jazak Allah.Your articles refreshes our eemaan,Alhamdulilllah.

  • evelyn

    To abdullah rajab I repent my sins every day and I pray and ask God to please let you be happy and OK

  • Anonymous

    Thanks n Keep it up. For this article has really help me. God!! Islam is beautiful, may Allah forgive us all. Ameen.

  • shareefah

    Masha’Allah, may Allah forgive our sins and have mercy on us. Assalamu alaikum

  • Shahid Nadeem

    Masha Allah ,really nice reminder for all of us to seek forgiveness from Allah with complete sincerity.Ameen.

  • ALHASSAN FUSEINI

    I am really delighted for this wonderful article,may bless us with the everlasting heaven.AMEEN!

  • Jazak-Allah, very informative . May Allah bless you for your effort to spread Islamic information.

  • Naheed Iqbal

    Assalamualaikum, thank you for guiding us the right way to seek for Allah’s SWT forgiveness. Jazak-Allah for your efforts. May Al-Ghafoor forgive all of us who repents with sincerity. AMEEN.

  • Jazak-Allah, Your content refreshes our eemaan, Alhamdulillah. May Allah bless you for your effort.

  • Bint'

    Jazakallah khair. May Allah reward you abundantly, in every aspect of your life. Please how does one go about asking forgiveness from Allah for committing a major sin?

  • Musibau habeeb adio

    I thank Allah for making a Muslim…. I also say .. Jazakumlahu khayran… May Allah make it possible for me ….

  • Alveera

    ASSALAAMU ALAIKUM WARAHMATULLAH WABARAKATUHU
    ALHAMDULILLAH,always great knowledge!
    MAY ALLAH SUBHANU WATA AALA bless RASUL ULLAH SALAL LAHU ALAIHE WASSALAM,what he deserve and all the believers,Ya Gaffar-forgive till our last breath in this world,give good in this world -aand much better in next Aameen
    JAZAK ALLAHU KHAIRAN!
    ASSALAAMU ALAIKUM WARAHMATULLAH WABARAKATUHU

  • Asslam o alikum all my Muslim brothers, I’m glad God made me a Muslim, today my thought i share with you guys Prayers timing, because without offering prayers, humans are nothing, because prayer will keep your soft.

  • Hassan njuguna

    Islam is best region and beatiful , my ALLAH forgive all ummah

  • Alhayat Daware

    Masha Allah, barakallahu fiina wa fiikhum, may Allah forgive us and continue blessing our life.

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