Surah Kahf starts off with the story of the men who fled from the torture of their disbeliever king, and took refuge in a cave. The first ayah we read on these young believing men is their dua. Sheikh Sohail Hanif1, explains how beautiful this dua is.
Let's do a breakdown of the words used in this ayah:
When the young men fled for refuge to the Cave and said: Our Lord! Give us
mercy from Thy presence and shape for us right conduct in our plight.
إِذْ أَوَى الْفِتْيَةُ إِلَى الْكَهْفِ فَقَالُوا رَبَّنَا آتِنَا مِن لَّدُنكَ رَحْمَةً وَهَيِّئْ لَنَا مِنْ أَمْرِنَا رَشَدًا
- الْفِتْيَةُ fitya - young men. Another usage of this term- chivalrous (indicate strength of character)
- لَّدُن ladun - indicates a place near or next to something. They put the term “from you” in front of their dua. They're asking for a direct mercy, not from any intermediary distance.
The prayer they made- O Our Lord, O you who cares about us, grant us, from you, a special mercy, not the general mercy of life and gifts in life.
What they are asking for is all good- the good of this world and the hereafter, a mercy which will save them from all humiliation, a mercy which will free them from all hardships completely
Their circumstance at the time of supplication was that they were in dire need, in a time when every opposite thing was expected, starvation, their fate threatened to be taken away from them, and to be exiled forever from their loved ones.
- َهَيِّئْ hayyi' - The idea here is “to prepare something” [translated here as shape for us]
- أَمْر amr - Meaning their circumstances [Translated here as right conduct]
Make easy for us, our circumstance
- رَشَدًا rashad - The meaning encompasses (1) goodness or khair, (2) an-nafu: everything most beneficial to one, and (3) salaah: everything perfect and upright
Oh Allah make our circumstances, and grant us in it complete rashad
Subhanallah, this dua was answered by Allah subhana wa ta'ala.
How did Allah give the men rashad?
- By warding off the enemies from the cave.
- Also Allah showed them to the cave, the cave was in a perfect location
- He put them to sleep and they woke up in times of belief
- And finally, the most beautiful part to me is that, He made them a sign for all of mankind
What an immense reward Subhanallah!
Benefit of reciting this prayer :
- Gathers together all good of this world.
- It's a sign of Allah (swt) accepting the duas soon after they are made.
1. Commentary on Key Chapters of the Qur'an