Many a time have I felt this sentiment above. Especially as I am a full time student of Islam studying in Saudi Arabia, I have the opportunity to sit with and be around some amazing people. I have a chance to sit at the feet of true scholars. It truly is a blessing.
But at the same time, when I fall into comparisons with them and myself, despair sets in. Because I look at how pathetic my situation is with anxiety disorder, and then I compare it to the scholars and how much confidence and happiness they have and how amazing they are in their energy levels and intelligences and memories, it can make a person dealing with anxiety disorder feel really down.
Then you have teachers at school who say things like, “Don’t fear anything except for Allah. Don’t fear people. Don’t fear criticisms. A true scholar fears nobody except for Allah” And comments like that always make me despair as well that I have this big issue with social anxiety, that the root of which is fear of people and their judgments.
Then I see the scholars and how many good thoughts they have about Allah, and then compare it to my iman crises, where I oftentimes fall into very bad thinking of Allah, and not good feelings towards many of the things that happen to me.
Then I always feel I am bombarded with whispers of shaitan, further making me feel that there is burden in the religion, and feeling like this religion is the opposite of easy, which again brings me down, because I compare that with so many people here that are so pleased with Islam, and they are always motivated to continue working to get closer to Allah.
And even the muslims here that aren’t practicing so much, they don’t seem to be suffering very much with thinking Islam is difficult. They just live life normally like any other human being would. And the fact that there are so many of these people not suffering with these feelings of burdening in religion, it adds to my feelings of despair with anxiety disorder, to make me feel that I am screwed.
Let me encourage now.
Our upbringings; did we choose them? Did we choose to not know that Allah was there for us all along? Did we choose our parents with unhealthy parenting styles to set us on the path for anxiety disorder? Did we choose to become stressed out and anxious? Did we choose to have racing thoughts and depersonalisation?
And with all of this in mind, do we still forget that Allah still guided us to Islam when nobody else was there for us? That He still found enough goodness in us that He wanted to and still wants to bring us to the light of Iman and good health? That we were completely lost in life, not even knowing the purpose of our existence, and then showed us the light and purpose, and gave us ilm?
And we found you lost, so We guided you… 93:7
When we have a mentality that is set about how we view ourselves and how we view the One who planned things out for us, it is often times difficult to change the way you think. Let’s keep trying. There have been so many positive moments, and yes the negative moments still come often, but let’s keep on trying and chugging along, until we have purified ourselves with Allah’s help.